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Judaism And Catholicism In America Essay

613 words - 3 pages

Assimilation refers to the adapting of ones’ ways to that of another culture or group in an effort to “fit into the mainstream.” This can be seen as a problem because people do not like change and therefore are hesitant to change their religious beliefs. While assimilation may be viewed as a negative, there are positives that can come from change. Believers will critique their religion to fit their ways, or if they are not satisfied they will convert or branch off (Goff and Harvey 31-35). Through assimilation, religions, such as Judaism and Catholicism, have shaped to meet the needs of the ever changing America.
Judaism in the United States expresses their religious freedom, along with the ability to change their traditions, in accordance to the challenges of modernity and citizenship. Reformed minded Jews were able to exercise their religious freedom in America to adapt practices to fit the needs of a modern, industrial society that was free from strict and community encompassing traditions of conservative self-regulating practices. They, therefore, discarded certain traditions viewed as archaic, modernized services, opened upsetting for families, and provided more open and inviting services. Reform Jews did not seek converts from outside Judaism, but rather they attempted to attract disaffected Jews to a faith that responded to the realities of living in American society. Reform Judaism itself, pioneered by Rabbi Isaac Mayer Wise in Cincinnati before the Civil War, was the recognition that Jew lives in an evangelical culture and would have to adapt accordingly. While Reform Jews in America did their best to become American, many Conservative Jews pressed the cause of Zionism (Goff and Harvey 56-57). Likewise, for some people, their form of assimilation includes the opportunity to drop practices and adopt such practices as women working and attending school, and a decline of kosher food practices. Such behaviors...

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