This is My God: A Guidebook to Judaism

This is My God A Guidebook to Judaism This Is My God is Herman Wouk s famous introduction to Judaism completely updated and revised with a new chapter Israel at Forty A miracle of brevity it guides readers through the world s oldest pra

  • Title: This is My God: A Guidebook to Judaism
  • Author: Herman Wouk
  • ISBN: 9780802726438
  • Page: 482
  • Format: Paperback
  • This Is My God is Herman Wouk s famous introduction to Judaism completely updated and revised with a new chapter, Israel at Forty A miracle of brevity, it guides readers through the world s oldest practicing religion with all the power, clarity and wit of Wouk s celebrated novels.

    One thought on “This is My God: A Guidebook to Judaism”

    1. This is the perfect starting point for anyone-Jew or Christian -who wants to learn about Judaism. It is thoughtful, insightful, entertaining and sensitively explains Judaism to a broad readershipThis is not simply a guide to the Jewish religion .Herman Wouk-a well known novelist and playwright - is clearly a man of the world but is also an observant JewHe speaks about his own illuminating insights and experiencesWritten in 1959 it is still equally relevant today as then . He points out the contr [...]

    2. Probably my first formal introduction to Judaism. I read this in seventh grade. Bought for 25-cents from the withdrawn section at the library.A favorite quote:“Religious people tend to encounter, among those who are not, a cemented certainty that belief in God is a crutch for the weak and the fearful. It would be just as silly to assert that disbelief in God is a crutch for the immoral and the ill-readNow the belief in God may turn out at the last trump to be a mistake. Meantime, let us be qui [...]

    3. This is the perfect starting point for anyone-Jew or Christian -who wants to learn about Judaism. It is thoughtful, insightful, entertaining and sensitively explains Judaism to a broad readershipThis is not simply a guide to the Jewish religion .Herman Wouk-a well known novelist and playwright - is clearly a man of the world but is also an observant JewHe speaks about his own illuminating insights and experiencesWritten in 1959 it is still equally relevant today as then . He points out the contr [...]

    4. Herman Wouk's appeal for Orthodox Judaism is sincere, but ultimately uneven. He's at his finest when he's arguing against the naturalistic atheism that's come in and out of fashion, but is now absolutely dominant in the western world. He reminds us that naturalism can be just another form of received dogma, and there are matters for which science offers only axioms. He finds Judaism to be in accord with his values and his heritage. And it's a proven winner: Its rituals keep divinity constantly i [...]

    5. This was a good book to understand about the Jewish Way Of Living. Although, written work on Judaism can go into volumes of work, with this as a concise work of writing the author has done a pretty good job.The book is divided into four sections:1. THE REMARKABLE SURVIVAL OF THE JEWS deals with who the Jews are and their symbols.2. THE FAITH deals with the Sabbath, information on the various Nature Festivals (the Calendar, Passover, Sukkoth), the High Holy Days, the Minor Holy Days (Tisha B'Av, [...]

    6. This is an excellent book! I learned so much from it, and not just about the Judaism. I learned about principles that help one lead a good life, not always an easy life, but a life of value and depth. And yes, I learned a lot about judaism. Wouk is a thinker of the highest caliber and has a wonderful way of expressing his points. Still, this was not an easy read for me, nor was it a fast read, but the further I got into it the less that mattered. I was enjoying the journey through this book and [...]

    7. JUDAISM FOR EVERYONEA formidable book, written for everyone, from the pious Chassidim who seems to know all about Judaism to the secular Wall Street Jewish Banker who is far from his faith but feels every now and then the sweet but stern internal calling of his demanding heritage The best chapters,in my opinion, are related to the experiences related to the secular Jewish people when they got involved in the Jewish religious rituals at the synagogue or at home during childhood, "one feels like h [...]

    8. Herman Wouk is known for such Naval adventure novels as "War and Remembrance", "The Caine Mutiny" and "The Winds of War." Wouk's experience as a naval officer shaped his self-image and his writing, but another huge influence on Wouk was his Orthodox Jewish faith. In other novels such as "Marjorie Morningstar" and "Inside/Outside", Wouk delves into the experience of growing up Jewish in New York. In this, the only work of non-fiction Wouk ever published, he delves into the Jewish faith and explai [...]

    9. An introduction to the Jewish faith written for secular Jews and curious others. This was interesting. What struck me the most was the focus on how you act, rather than what you believe. (Basically pretty much the exact opposite of the religion I grew up in.) And then, perhaps as a result of that, the much greater emphasis on the common law coming about as a great conversation/debate that spans centuries. It was also interesting how the author would sometimes referred to a commentary author who [...]

    10. This book summarizes the Jewish religion, written "for people who have at least an open mind on God, and who would like to know something about the Jewish way to him." In it, Wouk reminds me of C.S. Lewis, using a clear, conversational writing style and employing numerous analogies to make his points accessible. He even engages in a great deal of apology, although he insists that Jews do not seek to convert anyone. The book is aimed at non-practicing Jews and gentiles who are "curious about the [...]

    11. This was a great book. It was recommended to me by one of my wife's orthodox colleagues as a good basic primer on the Jewish faith. Of course, even the updated version I read is a couple decades old at this point, and so I am sure that the information is not completely up to date in terms of modern practice. Nevertheless, it was a very interesting and informative read. As a Christian, my entire religion is based on the faith and scripture of Jews, and so I find it unfortunate that so many Christ [...]

    12. Herman Wouk was a literary giant of the post World War II fiction genre. But at one point, in the later days of his life, he sat down and wrote a book from his heart about his religion. It is undoubtedly the simplest yet most comprehensive work on Judaism that it has been my pleasure to read. Written as a devouit believer who felt that hsi religion was something that far transcended the Holacaust, having meaning and merit for all peoples to understand and admire. Using all of his writers skills [...]

    13. It's been a few years since I read this book, but one chapter still stands out to me: the chapter on the Sabbath. Wouk's depiction of the Jewish day of rest is equally as reverent for the ritual as it is unashamed of it. He describes his Sabbath experience as a truly empowering and spiritually nourishing sacrifice, and in a way that is unapologetic to our American 7-day-a-week, time-is-money paradigm. I hold other religious convictions close to me, but I wish I had an easier time being unapologe [...]

    14. I loved the theology in the first half (especially the chapter on the Sabbath), and it was refreshing to read the frankness of Wouk's personal beliefs. I had to trudge/fall asleep a bit through the legal theory and legal history; I'm out of practice I guess.

    15. I read this many years ago and have a purchased copy. It is valuable to both Jewish people and non-Jewish, as a means to acquaint and educate about a broad variety of religious practices and beliefs.

    16. Although Wouk initially wrote for a more casual Jewish audience, I admire this book from my point of view as a Christian. Wouk's passion for his faith's traditions and beliefs, and above all, his God, is contagious. It was a timely, energetic reminder for the parts of my own religion that I tend to be more casual towards.Wouk originally wrote the book in 1959, and has added a few footnotes to update his more recent commentary and his very brief history of the state of Israel (although his last u [...]

    17. I picked this book out on recommendation of my pastor because he referenced a story from it once in a conversation we had. The book is a primer on Judaism as it existed in the 1960's when Israel was new and the holocaust was an event fresh in the minds of Jews. Herman Wouk, a playwright and novelist, writes a general outline of the parts of the Jewish Faith he believes to be important, but he ends up giving a description of what is beautiful in Judaism. His description of his celebration of the [...]

    18. This was originally written in the 1950s and it shows in Wouk's complete disinterest in women's lives. That being said, I enjoyed reading it; some of what it covered was familiar to me, but there were definitely some new pieces. I do not agree with Wouk about any number of things, but I liked it as an overview & feel better prepared to dive in to deeper and more modern reading.

    19. A couple of months ago, I was talking to my nephew and he told me he was a Jew.I asked if he had ever been to a synagogue. No. I asked if he had ever read the Torah or the Talmud. No. I asked if he had ever read the complete Old Testament from the Bible. No. I asked if he had ever spoken to a Rabbi about the Jewish faith. No.After chuckling, I asked him why he thought he was Jewish. He advised me that Jesus was Jewish and he was a follower of Jesus, so he was Jewish, too. Needless to say (after [...]

    20. This book was a very interesting read. The author is very knowledgeable in the subject of Judaism, and yet is able to convey a large amount of information in a way that laymen such as myself can understand and connect to. A very fascinating subject!

    21. Not a bad book for someone who's taking a first look into Judaism. Mr. Wouk was born into a Jewish family but was not truly dedicated to his faith until his early adulthood; as a result he has seen the most frequent attacks against Judaism as well as a few new ones as well. He responds beautifully to each and does whatever someone who writes a book about his faith should do: he reminds us that no matter the differences between members of different faiths we will discover a good deal to admire in [...]

    22. I read this years ago. In 1999, I was on a search for a spiritual community. I visited a local Unitarian Universalist Society one Sunday. It seemed entirely directed at me. It was a Jewish themed service; I was a Judeophile. The reading was from my favorite chapter in this book about the Sabbath and Herman leaving the theatre and the director and producer freaking out because there was still a problem in the second act. He went home, cleaned up, prepared, enjoyed his family and the food, slept, [...]

    23. I have an older edition than the one listed. This book is a bit of an autobiograpy as well as the intended purpose: that of teaching the reader about the Jewish religion, the traditions as they relate to scripture, and its history. It took me a long time to read this small paperback, as I found myself finding something else - anything else - to do instead of finishing the book. The epilogue was interesting. As fascinating as I find the Old Testament, and as much as I love learning about the Jewi [...]

    24. This is an excellent overview/introduction to many things Jewish: history, customs, traditions, and the way things have involved. I'd recommend this book to anyone wanting more background information on Judaism. The only drawback is that it was written in the late 80s, and that dates some of his observations and remarks. Two updates to the chapters on Israel are included, and this helps. But there are still some changes worthy of noting, that are not included (for example,Reform Judaism is descr [...]

    25. Okay - I didn't actually read the large print version - my eyes aren't that bad yet. :-) You might remember Herman Wouk as the writer of Winds of War and such. This is a great book for the lay person of non-Jewish background who is interested in understanding the Jewish faith. Wouk wrote this orginally in 1959 after a secular friend asked him if he knew any good books about Hanukah as he wanted his son to learn about his heritage. It is an enjoable read written with a light hand and no small amo [...]

    26. An introductory view of Judaism. Wouk is an American Jew who comes from a traditionally Orthodox family. He has lived in America and Israel and writes about Judaism from these perspectives. The book explores the history and progression of Judaism and talks about various aspects including holidays, religious practices, prayer, and views on marriage, religion, food, etc. I found that Wouk would often digress from the topic into stories relating to his personal experiences and frequently I was left [...]

    27. I read this book for a class and was expecting a boring scholarly book, but Wouk has a way of making this feel more like a novel and I loved that. I learned so much about Judaism. I am a Mormon and I really enjoyed learning of another faith. It helped me better understand the Bible better, especially when you remember that Jesus was a Jew. I would highly recommend this book to others that are exploring other faiths or would merely like to know more. If you don't know that much about Jews and wan [...]

    28. This is a great book offering a explanation into the Jewish religion. Wouk does a great job of giving the history and evolution of the Jewish faith. If you have ever wondered at all about Judism this is a great book to start reading. Although some of the analogies the author uses are a bit date, the author talks about a home costing $25,000, I beleive the book is an relevant now as it was when it was written in 1959.

    29. I read this book for a world religions class in college ten years ago. After college I sold or gave away most of my textbooks and required reading books, except this one. I found it to be well-written and an enjoyable read. I love learning about religions that aren't my own but sometimes the books written on them are a little dull -this one was not. I appreciated the author's explanations, examples and personal experinces. It's a book I would, and should, read again.

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