- About Us
- Adult Education
- Family Education
- Our Community
The Reconstructionist movement is the result of Kaplan’s lifelong effort to create a Judaism that could bring the culture, community, and spirituality of the Jewish people forward and make it meaningful in a world of science, reason, and cultural diversity. “A people can live,” Kaplan said, “as long as it can reconstruct its life to meet changing conditions.” Striking a balance between respect for tradition, and the recognition that in the modern world not all aspects of tradition are relevant or meaningful, Reconstructionism seeks to do what Kaplan felt the Jewish people have done throughout our history — re-examine and re-invent tradition to make it vital in a particular time and place.
Kaplan described Judaism as the evolving religious civilization of the Jewish people, and he encouraged American Jews to live fully in two civilizations — the Jewish and the American. In practice this means respecting tradition — but having a willingness to modify it when that makes sense. It means working to preserve the Jewish “religious civilization” and to enhance it by borrowing the best of modern American civilization, as Kaplan did when he celebrated the world’s first bat mitzvah at the SAJ in 1922.
Come to the SAJ and experience our ongoing reconstruction of Judaism to mesh our desire for traditional observance with our 21st-century needs.
We’re very pleased to send each new member a free copy of Exploring Judaism: A Reconstructionist Approach, by Rabbis Rebecca T. Alpert and Jacob J. Staub, published by the Reconstructionist Press.
To find out more about Reconstructionism, visit the Jewish Reconstructionist Movement.
Tue, 25 April 2017
29 Nisan 5777
welcome to the sAJ community
We’re a community that believes it’s possible to lead a 21st-century life that is deeply rooted in both Jewish tradition and contemporary civilization. Judaism helps us find meaning and inspiration as we seek to lead lives committed to spiritual growth, social justice, and building community. We welcome the richness that diversity brings to this community, where we learn about, struggle with, and even question our Judaism as we continue to "reconstruct" it for our times.
Upcoming Events at SAJ
Shabbat, Apr 29th 10:00a to 12:30p
Shabbat, Apr 29th 10:30a to 12:30p
Shabbat, Apr 29th 10:30a to 11:30a
Sunday, Apr 30th 10:00a to 5:30p
Tuesday, May 2nd 4:00p to 6:00p
Shabbat, May 6th 10:00a to 12:30p
Shabbat, May 6th 10:30a to 12:30p
Tuesday, May 9th 4:00p to 6:00p
Tuesday, May 9th 8:00p to 10:00p
Wednesday, May 10th 12:00p to 1:30p
Lunch and Learn: “Women in the Torah and Midrash: Exploring Genesis” Taught by Rabbi Lauren Grabelle Herrmann Bring your own nash, SAJ will provide drinks. RSVPs helpful (but ok to come regardless!) In each session, we will explore women and women’s roles as written in the Torah and explored in rabbinic midrash and/or modern interpretation. Through each session, we will look at texts and think critically about why the torah was written as it was and its implications for today.
Join the SAJ Mailing List
Society for the Advancement of Judaism
15 West 86th Street, NYC 10024