World Faiths & Religions

Frequently Asked Questions

If there are women rabbis, then why are there synagogues ...

The place of women in Judaism is a fascinating study in the message of Judaism catching up with the society in which Jews live. The fact is that Judaism, like its sibling religions Islam and Christianity, is patriarchic. Women have played roles in religious education at home, but publically men have been the standard bearers of the banner. How does this jibe with a society that increasingly accepts women as co-partners with men? And how does this jibe with messages from the Torah that man and woman are partners in the Creation and that all were present when the Torah was given and that we are all equal creations of God? The answer is that in the non-Orthodox world, women have essentially taken their rightful co-equal place on the bimah (altar) and in all other aspects of Jewish life. Even in the modern Orthodox world women are increasingly getting involved in worlds of prayer and Torah learning that would have been unthinkable even 5 years ago.