In the Jewish tradition, rabbis
have always been involved in teaching the Jewish tradition to the members of their congregations. In modern times, it has
become apparent that the distinction between philosophers and educators that is clear in academic environments, is much less
clear among rabbis. At what point does the work of a rabbi extend beyond education into the realm of philosophy itself?
In an important sense, this is an artificial distinction that is more useful in the organization of websites than in the lives
of our rabbis or the congregations that they serve.
Sholem Aleichem 1859-1916
Rabbi Sherwin Wine 1928-2007
We wish to recognize the contributions
of some of our leading educators here, while recognizing that the International Federation for Secular & Humanistic Judaism
does not have a role in guiding the educational programs of the organizations that affiliate with us. That is the responsibility
of our member organizations. Any discussions of educational issues that occur at this level are discussions occurring outside
of the organizations that will finally act on any conclusions that may arise. On the other hand, it is the role of the International
Federation to foster communication between our member organizations. Sometimes this purpose can be served by some discussions
of educational issues.
It can also be useful to see the breadth of educational materials that are used throughout
our international movement. Like the other parts of the Jewish tradition, Humanistic Judaism is a remarkably cohesive school
of thought. Unlike science, however, it contains some disagreements and a range of thought. This range of thought often
has remarkable similarities to the thoughts that lie outside of Humanistic Judaism, but there is greater agreement on both
the starting points of Judaic thought and its conclusions within Humanistic Judaism than outside of it. These teachers have
played a key role in explaining this point of view to our people.
Rabbi Adam Chalom
Rabbi Greg Epstein
Rabbi Eva Goldfinger
Rabbi Nardy Grün