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Beliefs



Sacred Narratives

Consistent with the "positive-historical" and humanistic ideology of its founders, Reform Judaism views the history of Israel in naturalist terms. It interprets the biblical notions of Israel's status as a "nation of priests" and her mission as a "light unto the nations" as having emerged from the Jewish people's historical quest for holiness, not divinely ordained.

Ultimate Reality and Divine Beings

While upholding, in the most general sense, the fundamental Judaic belief in unity of the one "God of Israel," Reform Judaism rejects the doctrine of the divine revelation of the Torah, the election of Israel as a chosen people, and all other supernatural elements of classical Jewish faith.

Human Nature and the Purpose of Existence

Inspired by the ethical teachings of the ancient Hebrew prophets, Reform Judaism is most strongly committed to what it calls "Ethical Monotheism," stressing moral behaviors over ritual observances as the true fulfillment of human purpose on earth.

Suffering and the Problem of Evil

On account of its de-emphasis on supernatural elements of religion and focus on social action, Reform Judaism has not developed any official theodicy.

Afterlife and Salvation

Most Reform theologians place little, if any, emphasis on supernatural doctrines such as the eternity and salvation of the soul in the "future world," stressing instead salvation through the spread of universal moral ideals in this life.