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One People, Two Worlds: A Reform Rabbi and an Orthodox Rabbi Explore the Issues That Divide Them
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One People, Two Worlds: A Reform Rabbi and an Orthodox Rabbi Explore the Issues That Divide Them

3.78  ·  Rating Details ·  78 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews
After being introduced by a mutual friend in the winter of 2000, Reform Rabbi Ammiel Hirsch and Orthodox Rabbi Yosef Reinman embarked on an unprecedented eighteen-month e-mail correspondence on the fundamental principles of Jewish faith and practice. What resulted is this book: an honest, intelligent, no-holds-barred discussion of virtually every “hot button” issue on whic ...more
Paperback, 336 pages
Published August 26th 2003 by Schocken (first published August 20th 2002)
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Michael Benami Doyle
May 26, 2012 Michael Benami Doyle rated it really liked it
Shelves: judaica
I went into this book expecting a balanced debate between the Reform rabbi and the Orthodox rabbi, with the Reform rabbi defending elements of my own liberal Judaism. I ended the book with far more empathy towards the Orthodox rabbi and more than a little embarrassment about the Reform rabbi.

Throughout the book, Orthodox Rabbi Yosef Reinman describes an Orthodox Judaism that is more loving and less strident or closed to the world than we often hear our Reform rabbis tell us from the bimah. He di
Oct 03, 2012 Gutman rated it liked it
I found the book to be an entertaining and interesting snapshot in time, depicting the gap between Orthodox and Reform versions of Judaism. It's already a bit dated, 10+ years after it was written, which actually added to its appeal for me.
R' Reinman somewhat dominates the discussion, and therefore the book, and he tends to be speaking to the reader as opposed to R' Hirsch, while Hirsch seems to be speaking directly to Reinman. I think a moderator with some editorial control could have made thi
Neil Davis
Mar 09, 2014 Neil Davis rated it really liked it
Great concept, and very enlightening. It's a book that reminds us that even the most emotional debate can be had in a civil way if by mensches like these two Rabbis. A very worthwhile read.
Joseph Green
Mar 30, 2015 Joseph Green rated it really liked it
If you are interested in understanding the differences between Orthodox Jews and Reform Jews, this is the best book I found on the subject.
Dec 01, 2011 Jacqui rated it liked it
A very educational book! While I expected equal discussion from each rabbi, the Orthodox--or Classical--rabbi stole the show. His explanations were erudite, passionate, and backed up by Torah and Talmud. The Reform rabbi, while equally passionate and erudite, often fell back into some of the criticisms that liberal Jews have towards their more observant brethren. Both men had their assumptions about the other but, by the end of the book, many of these had been overcome. Certainly not all of them ...more
Frank Harris
May 23, 2012 Frank Harris rated it liked it
Shelves: spirituality
I had some trouble getting through this book, but almost exactly half of it - that is, I found the Orthodox writer to be increasingly condescending, rhetorically slippery, sarcastic, and sanctimonious. I suppose he did get his perspective as an Orthodox Jew across, even with all that, so there's that. The Reform rabbi, on the other hand, was much more pleasant to read, and also much more consistent and particular in his arguments and ideas, and there's a certain satisfaction each time he rebukes ...more
Sep 03, 2012 Eden rated it it was amazing
As a practicing Jew for my entire life, this book significantly altered the way I view some facets of Judaism. I often suggest this book to anyone I encounter who is undergoing any type of transitional process within his or her practicing/understanding of Judaism.
Apr 11, 2007 Barry rated it it was amazing
Shelves: jewish-musings
Really well done. Easy to go with pre-conceived notions- but all both points of view frequently well done. Braod choice of issues- role of women, role of orthodox in reform, G-d written or G-d inspired text, gay rights-- and more. worth reading more than once
May 04, 2011 Stephanie rated it liked it
A somewhat awkward debate between an Orthodox rabbi and a Reform rabbi (both males). Some valid points are made with appropriate sources provided. I'm doing a lot of underlining in pencil and thinking. Fairly good read so far.
Craig Bolton
"One people, two worlds : an Orthodox rabbi and a Reform rabbi explore the issues that divide them by Ammiel Hirsch (2002)"
Eddie Mochon
Jul 23, 2012 Eddie Mochon rated it it was ok
Pathetic, superficial and dogmatic discussion. I absolutely gain no valuable insights on the topics included. Some good points.
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