A Life of Courage: Sherwin Wine and Humanistic Judaism by Dan Cohn-Sherbok, Marilyn Rowens, Harry Cook

By Dan Cohn-Sherbok, Marilyn Rowens, Harry Cook

Compiled by way of Dan Cohn-Sherbok, Harry prepare dinner & Marilyn Rowens, a lifetime of braveness is either a biography of and a tribute to the notable lifetime of Rabbi Sherwin T. Wine. founding father of Humanistic Judaism. Wine all started the move of Humanistic Judaism within the early Sixties on the Birmingham Temple in suburban Detroit, Michigan, with the idea that secular Jewish tradition and Jewish background form people's identification as Jews, instead of their trust in God.

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Members of a taxon are similar because they share a common heritage; they do not belong to the taxon because they are similar' (Mayr 1969, pp. 65f£). Similarly, vegetables are (primarily) any plants 'whose root or fruit or leaf is [in the judgement of English speakers] (a) savoury, and (b) edible by human beings. The set of all vegetables has as its subsets some but not all species of the Cruciferae family, some but not all of the Leguminosae family etc. ' (Wiggins 1980, p. 172). They are not savoury or edible because they are vegetables, any more than a man is unmarried because he is a bachelor.

Recognizing the emotive load that attaches to this barrier forces us to reconsider our own moral responsibilities towards non- human animals. Although she identifies the main emotion involved as one of fear, she does not attempt to explain how it arose, nor is it clear whether we are to regard it as a human universal or as a peculiarly Western affliction born of an ideological propensity to equate animality with the darker side of human nature and the threat that it apparently poses to cherished values of reason and civilization.

That is, the animal, insofar as it is conscious and aware, holds before its mind images of desired future states, chooses among the means to achieve them, and acts accordingly. Yet, as Ingold points out, it is rather ironic that- as a condition ofbeing considered conscious- the animal should be supposed always to think before it acts, when we know very well that much of what we ourselves do, quite consciously and intentionally, is not so premeditated While accepting the Cartesian premise that thinking in the sense of the construction of prior intentions, being dependent upon language, is a uniquely human capacity, Ingold rejects ~he view that such planning is a condition for the intentionality of action.

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