Donate Richard Lowell Rubenstein is a U. Rubenstein was born in New York City; his parents were non-observant Jews and he did not have a barmitzvah. He was tempted to enter the ministry but was told that he would have to change his name. Instead, he embraced his own tradition. He was ordained at the Seminary and received his MHL in
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Rubenstein Credit To preserve these articles as they originally appeared, The Times does not alter, edit or update them. Occasionally the digitization process introduces transcription errors or other problems; we are continuing to work to improve these archived versions. The problem is especially urgent within Judaism. The traditional Jewish doctrine of the chosen people, no matter how interpreted, is difficult to maintain in the face of Auschwitz.
Contemporary Biblical faith, whether Jewish or. Until recently, few establishment theologians acknowledged that Auschwitz in any way constituted a challenge to traditional formulations of religious belief.
Only after the issue had been widely discussed within academic departments of religion did the establishment theologians attempt response. Establishment Jewish theologians have tended to ignore the problem altogether or to dismiss it by denying its novelty. They failed to recognize the extent to which death camps are as much an expression of the innate potentialities of a technologically competent civilization as are jets and computers. At Auschwitz human beings were subjected to an unprecedented assault by uniformed technocrats who utilized sophisticated techniques of psychological manipulation first to strip their victims of dignity and then to exterminate them with an extraordinary economy of means.
Unless a. The incredible transformations thrust upon us by our own inventiveness have profoundly altered contemporary sensibility. There is a radical hiatus between traditional forms and contemporary culture in politics, art and the new styles. It ought not to be surprising that the same chasm between the old and the new is becoming manifest in religion. It is my conviction that the Biblical God has ceased to be credible after Auschwitz and that a religious situation of great fluidity is developing under the impact of contemporary technology.
Many Jews have elected continued submission to a God who inflicted extermination upon them rather than suffer the. By contrast, a growing number of both Jews and Christians are finding nontheistic forms of religion, often based on ancient pagan or Asian models, increasingly relevant to their life experience and their values. This writer has found the ancient earth gods and the realities to which they point extremely meaningful.
It is my faith after Auschwitz that we are chilidren of Earth, that all of us are degtined eventually to be consumed by our original progenetrix, that we have nothing to hope for beyond our bodily lives, and that our religions with their impressive rituals are but the distinctive ways we share and celebrate a condition entirely enclosed within the fatalities of an absurd earthly existence.
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Rubenstein Credit To preserve these articles as they originally appeared, The Times does not alter, edit or update them. Occasionally the digitization process introduces transcription errors or other problems; we are continuing to work to improve these archived versions. The problem is especially urgent within Judaism.
Richard L. Rubenstein
Education[ edit ] Rubenstein began his tertiary education at Hebrew Union College , an institution within the Reform Judaism tradition. He graduated from the University of Cincinnati with a B. He then was awarded the Master of Hebrew Literature from the Jewish Theological Seminary of America Conservative tradition and was also ordained as a rabbi by that institution. Finally, he pursued doctoral studies and received a Ph.