Read the First 2 Chapters of Sleeping Truth
We Need You Now!

Jewish Descent Rules Are Not Biblical

According to Jewish law, the child of a Jewish woman is Jewish regardless of who the father is, while the child of a Jewish father is not Jewish if the mother is not Jewish. In other words, a Jewish woman has the ability to confer Jewishness, while a Jewish man does not. In practical terms, Judaism does not recognize the child of an intermarried Jewish man as Jewish unless the child converts to Judaism. But the child of an intermarried Jewish woman is Jewish regardless of what faith the child is raised in.

In my view, Jewish law on this point is completely insane, both genetically and sociologically. What possible point could there be in denying genetic Jews membership among the Jewish people? No other group works this way. For example, if you have an American parent, the American government does not care what gender your American parent is. It is happy to recognize you as an American citizen.

Oh, you say, Jewish law is different because we always know who the mother is, but we do not know for sure who the father is. Read more »

L’Shanah Tovah – For a Good Year

For Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, the High Holy Days in Judaism, sometimes Jews say “Happy New Year”, like we all do on December 31. Sometimes we say “Good Yontiff,” which is Yiddish for “Good Yom Tov,” which basically means “Good Holiday.” But most often, we say “L’Shanah Tovah,” which means “For a Good Year” and is short for “May You Be Inscribed in the Book of Life for a Good Year.”

According to a key prayer on the High Holy Days, we are told that on Rosh Hashanah (the Jewish new year), it is written, and on Yom Kippur (the Day of Atonement) it is sealed — who shall live and who shall die, who shall be healthy and who shall be sick, who shall have peace and who shall be harried, who shall die by fire and who by water, etc. etc.

Pretty scary stuff, which keeps Jews coming to synagogues on those days even if they don’t come any other time of the year. So when we say “L’Shanah Tovah”, we are wishing someone to be given a good decree by God for the coming year. It is much more significant than the “Happy New Year” we say on December 31, where we celebrate that we are still alive at midnight to see the coming of another calendar year. Read more »

Invite Them and They Will Come

According to a recent poll of church-goers, 82% of those who don’t go to or belong to a church would go to a church service this weekend if a friend or someone they know invited them. That is a huge number – 82%!

There is no reason to believe that the same number would be different for Jewish unaffiliated people.

So what is the problem? We all know what it is – Jewish prayer services are boring and unless the synagogue you’re inviting them to is friendly or makes a connection in some way, the people you invite are not likely to return, with the possible exception of the High Holidays. Read more »

Was President Lyndon Johnson Jewish?

A few months ago, the Associated Press reported that newly released tapes from U.S. president Lyndon Johnson’s White House office showed LBJ’s “personal and often emotional connection to Israel.” The news agency pointed out that during the Johnson presidency (1963-1969), “the United States became Israel’s chief diplomatic ally and primary arms supplier.”

But the news report does little to reveal the full historical extent of Johnson’s actions on behalf of the Jewish people and the State of Israel.

Read more »

Welcome to My Website!

This website has one primary purpose – to help stop and hopefully reverse the attrition of Jews from the American Jewish community. Many others are trying to do this too; some are trying to make Jewish prayer services more interesting and others are focused on improving Jewish education.

Those are laudable efforts that I agree with. However, those efforts only reach those who are actively in the Jewish community at the present time. So many of our numbers are not in the Jewish community, never go to prayer services and never attend Jewish educational classes. In other words, current efforts are like preaching to the choir and not connecting at all to everyone else.

So how do we reach them?

My hope is to reach them through the books I am and will be writing. Perhaps this website will also help. I hope so. I start from one basic assumption: If you have a product and it is not selling, you either have to change the buyers or you have to change the product. Read more »

Palestinians — Learn from Us

by Alan Bergstein

To the Palestinians:

I am a Jew who asks but a few minutes of your time to consider the following differences between Jews and Muslims. Learn from us.

Jews do not hate Muslims. They do not call for the death of Muslims nor do they pray to their G-d to destroy Islamic nations, their leaders or their people. Jews do not slip into Muslim homes to slit the throats of innocent men, women and children and then name streets, plazas and schools in honor of these terrorists. A Jew, Dr. Baruch Goldstein who slew 29 Muslims back in 1994, in an act of terror was defamed and dishonored by Israel, its leaders and Jews around the world. Terror is not our game. Learn from us. Read more »

No-Dues Synagogues Expanding

Factors that have changed Jewish life in the last decade — such as intermarriage, decreased affiliation with synagogues, and more options to practice Judaism outside of a temple — are forcing synagogues to create strategic plans to stay solvent.

Last month, Marblehead’s Temple Emanu-El became one of 15 traditionally affiliated synagogues nationwide, joining  Temple Israel of Sharon and Temple Ahavat Achim in Gloucester, to scrap its longstanding annual dues policy and institute a voluntary membership pledge. Read more »