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The Way Into Judaism and the Environment

3.75  ·  Rating Details ·  12 Ratings  ·  3 Reviews
An accessible introduction to the Jewish understanding of the natural world and the key concepts central to Jewish environmentalism.

At a time of growing concern about environmental issues, this book explores the relationship Jews have with the natural world and the ways in which Judaism contributes to contemporary social/environmental issues. It also shows readers the ext
Hardcover, 260 pages
Published October 1st 2006 by Jewish Lights Publishing
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Aug 15, 2008 Tucker rated it really liked it
Shelves: finished
This book was recommended to me as "deep and nuanced" and it surpassed expectations. Benstein wrestles with varied historical Jewish attitudes towards the environment and paints a vibrant philosophical picture without manipulating some views to subsume or exclude others.

Although there is some grounding in actual environmental situations, including a direct quote from a 2000 report by Alon Tal that "[s]cientists predict that Jerusalem's air will soon be as polluted as that of Mexico City" (p. 215
The Way Into Judaism and the Environment is an excellent resource expanding on the current pertinent environmental and global issues. Benstein believes that “a sustainable society is one that integrates social, environmental, and economic concerns of health and justice, and can both sustain itself over time, living up to responsibilities to future generations…”

Consumption, destruction and waste is an important topic within the pages, and how we are responsible for not only what we consume in the
Aug 16, 2012 Ellen rated it really liked it
Benstein explores the interconnections between Judaism and environmentalism from the prospective of classic Jewish thought and texts, as well as from the environmental aspect. He covers a great deal of source material, some more familiar and some less so, with a light touch. Worthwhile reading for anyone interested in the topic, with careful notes and a thorough bibliography for further study.
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