Kimberly Winston, “Judaism without God? Yes, say American atheists,” The Washington Post, 09/23/2011 (http://www.washingtonpost.com/on-faith/judaism-without-god-yes-say-american-atheists/2011/09/23/gIQAemL9qK_story.html)

Despite the fact that I do not know a lot about Judaism, the headline of this article was quite shocking to me because I thought that one of the primary facets of Judaism is belief in God. Since the title does not go along with what I believe, I thought it would be interesting to read.   The article is about how some Jewish people who attend synagogue often and take part in many Jewish traditions, do not actually believe in God. Some couples attend synagogue (even though they don’t believe in God) primarily because they want their children to be brought up in a Jewish culture and understand their heritage.  The overall conclusion of the article is that it is possible to be Jewish without believing in God.

The way in which the author wrote this article does not make her argument very convincing.  Throughout the article, there are many quotations from people who are Jewish and don’t believe in God.  The author uses these quotations to make her point, but does not give much outside support for her reasoning.  Therefore, a large percentage of the article is rather opinion and not facts that can be supported.  An example of how the author uses broad generalizations in this article is when she writes, “At the High Holy Days of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, many Jews who identify as atheists, secular humanists and other religious “nones” attend synagogue.”  What does the author mean when she writes “many”? It is not shown in this article the percentage of Jews who don’t believe in God, which shows that it is probably not a large percentage right now.  The author should not generalize these facts to all Jewish people.  The overall tone of the article towards Judaism is non-traditional and emphasizes that you can still be Jewish without belief in God.

 

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