What Does It Mean to Be Jewish? Jewish identity is not solely religious, nor is it solely national. We have a long tradition and history as a people group that makes the Jewish an ethnicity, Yiddishkeit a culture, and Judaism a religion. Whether Jewish by birth or a convert, to be Jewish is not a simple checkmark on a survey.
One thing that many religions have in common is the concept of an all-knowing deity and free will of humankind.This is an interesting paradox, and is one that Judaism professes as well.
Since this site is grounded in a Jewish approach, we’ll stick to this lens for the conversation.
Life. Liberty. Health. The pursuit of happiness. All human rights…or are they? This is where we need to establish a distinction: are human rights endowed by a Creator, as America’s Declaration of Independence asserts, or are they self-endowed by creation?
Are Jews a people group or a religious group? One’s definition of what it means to be a Jew determines the definition of antisemitism.