Ten Principles of Judaism

Ten Principles of JudaismIn collaboration with The Ollendorff Center, Rabbi Bemporad has created Ten Principles of Judaism, a new presentation — including a 20 minute video and comprehensive study guide — of core Jewish values for our modern world.

The following Ten Principles establish that Jews should believe in Judaism because they believe in these fundamental ideals:

  1. Judaism teaches us that all human beings are created in the divine image and therefore are linked to God by the Divine Spark within them.
  2. Judaism teaches us how to nurture the Divine Spark within us, elevating us in moral worth and dignity and linking us to The Divine.
  3. Judaism rejects intermediaries.  It is never the responsibility of any one individual to determine and define our lives. We can learn from a great many individuals, from prophets and sages to ordinary people.
  4. Judaism teaches us that the revelations of God cannot be limited to one document, person or time.  Life, knowledge and reality are alive and changing. Therefore, Judaism cannot be bound by any particular text without the possibility of modification. The improved status of women today is one result of this perspective.
  5. Judaism teaches us that ritual without ethics is not only fruitless, but idolatrous and anti-religious. Ritual serves the purpose of implementing and embodying the ethical and spiritual dimensions of Judaism.  Ritual should never be a substitute for ethics or charitable acts.
  6. Judaism teaches us that the world is a work in progress. Judaism is a call to creativity — a call to make ourselves, our society and the world into something better.
  7. Judaism deeply values the search for truth. It is a religion of strong ideals and ethical and spiritual principles.
  8. Judaism teaches us that the severest consequence of evil doing is that it separates one from God.  Such isolation not only becomes a spiritual death, but it ultimately destroys one’s creative potential.
  9. Judaism teaches us the importance of embodying democratic values and stresses the significance of education towards fulfilling our mission.
  10. Judaism teaches us to fulfill our obligations and our promise as a people. It compels us to see the world with all its faults and teaches us that its evils and injustices are a call to make the world a better place and to engage in charitable acts of loving kindness.