Sunday, May 4, 2014

The Rabbi’s Top 10 Jewish Modern Events

This past Monday, April 28th, was Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day, this coming Monday, May 5th, tomorrow that is, will be Yom HaZikaron, Israel's Memorial Day, and the day after that, Tuesday, May 6th, will be Yom HaAtzma'ut, Israel's Independence Day.

In honor of this sequence of highly significant commemorations, we are pleased to repost here on our blog Rabbi Schwartz's list of the ten most important modern Jewish events, which originally was published on April 24th in his online column for the Times of Israel, under the heading of The Rabbi’s Top 10 Jewish Modern Events:

As we approach Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day, I offer a history list – my compilation of the most consequential events of modern Jewish history. As always, I welcome your comments.

1. Spinoza’s Excommunication—Launched thinker’s epic contribution to “modernity” and the notion of the secular Jew.

2. Mendelssohn’s “Jerusalem”First modern attempt to reconcile faith and reason.

3. Rise of HasidismKabbalistic spirit becomes energizing movement.

4. Parisian SanhedrinChallenges of citizenship become evident.

5. Frankfort Rabbinical ConferenceReform of Judaism finds its place even as a backlash ensues that helps create Conservative and Modern Orthodox denominations.

6. Emigration to AmericaDemographic shift begins to the new world.

7. Dreyfuss TrialPersistence of anti-Semitism shook Herzl and Europe.

8. First Zionist CongressHerzl’s reply and the first achievement of modern Zionism.

9. HolocaustTragedy on an unimaginable scale.

10. Birth of Modern IsraelTriumph on an unimaginable scale.

Previous posts in this series include The Rabbi’s Top Ten: The Best of Everything Jewish, and The Rabbi’s Top 10 Jewish Foods

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