domain of the common table/altar. Rather than restricting authority, they disperse authority. All Israel is a nation of priests. The democratization of this “priestly” function ﬁ nds an instruc- tive parallel in the central activity of Rabbinic religion and piety, Torah study. According to the Rabbinic
, while the moral aspect is starved, so to speak, of life.,,31 See I. Gruenwald, Apocalyptic and Merkavah Afysticism (Leiden, 1980), p. 31. 30 See "The Rabbinic Attempt to Democratize Salvation and Revelation," in Stud- ies in Religion 12 (1983), pp. 27-33. 31 Scholem, Major Trends, p. 79.
every four years, was once an important gathering. But these meetings have become unrecognizable in recent years, providing a forum for an abundance of speakers and lectures of an uneven standard. If this is the price of democratizing research, the cost may be too high, as many Israelis now deride the
, correctly explains this exegesis from the words “ before his works of old ,” “before he created the world”. Also see M. Avot 3:14, where Aqiba teaches that the Torah served as the endeared instrument through which the world was created.
54 See H. Basser, “The Rabbinic Attempt to Democratize Salvation and
functioned as a passionate defense of Judaism (p. 3). Geiger represented the Pharisees, whom Christian scholarship por- trayed in violently hostile terms, as the Reform Jews of their day: "liberal democratizers of Judaism.... Modern liberal Protestants who seek the faith ofJesus...can find it in Reform
public peace and the existence of society itself are not undermined.
96 Jean A. Cahan That is, we should democratize society, become tolerant of pluralistic trends in religious practice and social mores, rather than attempting to modify the concept of God to adapt to changing social conditions. As we
challenges the nature of media consumption to the core. 8 Judaism prefigured much of this movement. 9 Many scholars have noted that the requirement of male literacy in Judaism led to a kind of democratization of the Word. Each individual subject becomes the arbiter of God’s Word; it is bottom-up, not top
Radical: Abraham Joshua Heschel in America, 1940 –1972 (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2007), chapter 6. 3 One might note that Heschel’s later claim in T he Earth Is T he Lord’s that Ashkenazic Jewry owed its vitality to “the democratization of Talmudic learning” (39) ampli ﬁ ed. Another famous thinker
its appreciation of the gap between the explicit Orthodox discourse of immutability, and the actual performing of changes in tradition. On current transformations of Daat Torah in some pragmatic directions, see Benjamin Brown, Toward Democratization in the Haredi Leadership? The Doctrine of Da