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Conservative Practices

Dorff, Elliott. Mitzvah Means Commandment. United Synagogue Bookservice. [A look into the question of "Why perform mitzvot?" This book traces the various views, from the Biblical to the philosophical. The book also includes a section on the Conservative Movement's viewpoints.]

Gordis, Robert. The Dynamics of Judaism: A Study in Jewish Law. Indiana Univ Pr; 1990. Hardcover. ISBN 0-253326-02-8. [Outlines the basic traits of Judaism. Discusses the enduring features of Jewish law, including the primacy of ethical and moral concerns; discusses revelation as an active encounter between God and human; the creative role of the Mishna and Talmud; and how the lay community and minhag (custom) help shape Jewish law. Examines how the law changed and developed through the medieval period. Shows how the reaction to the Enlightenment produced the modern denominations and examines their view towards halakha. Particularly addresses the concerns of women in Jewish law, especially marriage, divorce, annulment, and women as rabbis.]
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Greenberg, Simon (ed). The Ordination of Women As Rabbis: Studies and Responsa (Moreshet Series: Studies in Jewish History, Literature, and Thought, Vol XIV). Jewish Theological Seminary of Amer; 1988. Hardcover. ISBN 0-873340-41-8. [Collects the responsa and halakhic studies from members of the Conservative leadership; The papers in this volume led to the movement's decision to ordain women as rabbis and cantors.]
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Klein, Isaac. A Guide to Jewish Religious Practice. Jewish Theological Seminary of Amer; 1979. Hardcover. ISBN 0-873340-04-3. [Published by the Conservative movement, but based upon previous law codes, including the Mishneh Torah, Shulkhan Arukh, and later responsa by Conservative and Orthodox authorities. It is more than a list of do's and don'ts: Each chapter discusses the philosophy, history and the reasons why these laws and customs came to be. This guide covers daily prayer, tallit and tzitzit, tefillin, weddings, births, adoption, divorce, bar and bat miztvahs, death and mourning, the High Holy Days, the Jewish festivals and fast days, Shabbat, keeping kosher, the laws of family purity, abortion and other topics.]
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Kling, Simcha; Perkins, Carl M. Embracing Judaism. Rabbinical Assembly; 2nd Rev edition (December 30, 1999). ISBN: 0916219151
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Siegel, Seymour ed. Conservative Judaism and Jewish Law. Rabbinical Assembly, New York. 1977. Out of Print

Rabbinical Assembly. Emet Ve-Emunah: Statement of Principles of Conservative Judaism. The JTS, Rabbinical Assembly, and the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism. 1988.

Roth, Joel. The Halakhic Process: A Systemic Analysis. Jewish Theological Seminary of America, 1986. Out of Print. [Presents and analyzes the primary Talmudic and rabbinic sources relating to the legal and extra-legal factors that go into the process of halakhic decision-making, focusing on today's issues.]

Wolfson, Ron. The Shabbat Seder (Art of Jewish Living). Jewish Lights Pub; 1996. Paperback. ISBN 1-879045-90-7. [A concise step-by-step guide designed to teach people the meaning of this weekly celebration, as well as its practices. Activities and rituals are set out in a straightforward way, along with instructions on how to perform them. Each chapter corresponds to one of ten steps which together comprise the Shabbat dinner ritual, and focuses on the concepts, objects, and meanings behind the specific activity or ritual act. It is designed in an easy-to-read format for people with varying degrees of Hebrew skills. Conservative.]
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Wolfson, Ron. The Passover Seder (The Art of Jewish Living). Jewish Lights Pub; 1996. Paperback. ISBN 1-879045-93-1. [Explains the concepts behind Passover ritual and ceremony in clear, easy-to-understand language, and guides you with step-by-step procedures for observance and preparing the home for the holiday. The Haggadah texts are in Hebrew, English, and transliteration. A detailed description of the procedures involved in performing rituals is included, along with a section of practical questions and answers. "Innovations" offers imaginative ideas and customs for Seder celebration.]
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Wolfson, Ron. Hanukkah (The Art of Jewish Living). Jewish Lights Pub; 1996. Paperback. ISBN 1-879045-97-4. [Discusses the holiday's origins, reasons for the Hanukkah candles and customs, and provides everything from recipes to family activities. There are songs in English, Hebrew, and Yiddish (with clear transliterations), recipes for Hanukkah foods, information on the arts and crafts of Hanukkah, the calendar and its relationship to Christmas time, and games played at Hanukkah. Putting the holiday in a larger, timely context, "December Dilemmas" deals with ways in which a Jewish family can cope with Christmas.]
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Wolfson, Ron. A Time to Mourn, A Time to Comfort. A volume in The Art of Jewish Living Series. Jewish Lights Pub; 1996. Paperback. 320 pages. ISBN 1-879045-96-6. [This volume is a guide to those who are or will be mourning the loss of a loved one, those who will be comforting those who are mourning, and also contains information on advance planning for your own death and such end-of-life issues as ethical wills, advance health care directives, and estate planning.]
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