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Jewish Tradition Quotes


"Neither Jewish morality nor Jewish tradition can be used to disallow terror as a means of war," - Yitzhak Shamir

"There is a Jewish tradition of family, too, but then not all Italian or Jewish families are close." - Richard Rogers

"I come from a tradition - from the Jewish tradition, which believes in words, in language, in communication." - Elie Wiesel

"It is obvious that the war which Hitler and his accomplices waged was a war not only against Jewish men, women, and children, but also against Jewish religion, Jewish culture, Jewish tradition, therefore Jewish memory." - Elie Wiesel

"The Jewish tradition of learning-is learning. Adam chose knowledge instead of immortality." - Elie Wiesel

"In Jewish tradition, death-defying devotion to scholarship was the stuff of saintliness." - Israel Shenker

"In Jewish tradition the Talmud is said to have been given on Sinai." - Elie Wiesel

"The Jewish tradition of learning - is learning. Adam chose knowledge instead of immortality." - Elie Wiesel

"The greatest Jewish tradition is to laugh. The cornerstone of Jewish survival has always been to find humor in life and in ourselves." - Jerry Seinfeld

"I'm a Jewish Jane Austen." - Howard Jacobson

"The highest principles for our aspirations and judgments are given to us in the Jewish-Christian religious tradition." - Albert Einstein

"There's never really been a tradition of making films about Jewish themes or using Judaism as a constant." - James Gray

"I don't really know of the Jewish tradition of comedy, only the Jewish tradition of not keeping your mouth shut. Complaining about all that is hard, unfair or ridiculous in life-having strong feelings, and not being able to suppress them. That, to me, is Jewish." - Fred Melamed

"I have nothing against the Jewish people." - Adolf Hitler

"The Jewish part of me is superstitious." - Gwyneth Paltrow

"We in the Jewish community are comparatively lucky. All of traditions have anti-gay pieces but the Jewish tradition doesn't have as many anti-sexuality and anti-body teachings. It's a lot easier to fit affirmation of sexuality and gender." - Jay Michaelson

"I have a broad but not an expert or scholarly background in the Jewish tradition. I've tried to learn what I can from childhood, but I am not an expert on Jewish teachings." - Michael Sandel

"I grew up in a Jewish family, and we have raised our children in a Jewish tradition. Religion gives a framework for moral enquiry in young minds and points us to questions beyond the material." - Michael Sandel

"I grew up in a tradition where having ideas and contributing to the community and creating art that had an impact on the world mattered. That's part of the Jewish tradition." - Eve Ensler

"My father was the Jewish half of the family, yet it was my mother who taught me to have pride in that tradition." - Gloria Steinem

"There are some religious traditions that view human beings as participants in creation. This is true of the Jewish tradition, from which I come." - Michael Sandel

"I felt there's a wealth in Jewish tradition, a great inheritance. I'd be a jerk not to take advantage of it." - Herman Wouk

"To be Jewish is to be specifically identified with a history. And if you're not aware of that when you're a child, the whole tradition is lost." - Joyce Carol Oates

"Tradition was safety; change was danger." - Mary Doria Russell

"Tradition is a challenge to innovation.." - Alvaro Siza Vieira

"Tradition will accustom people to any atrocity" - George Bernard Shaw

"Most seasonings are based on family tradition." - Wolfgang Puck

"All tradition is merely the past." - Jiddu Krishnamurti

"The American Jewish Committee has pioneered the German-Jewish-American dialogue." - Klaus Kinkel

"Major Trends [is] the canonical modern work on the nature and history of Jewish mysticism. For a sophisticated understanding, not only of the dynamics of Jewish mysticism, but of the exquisite complexities of Jewish history and tradition, Major Trends is a major port of entry through which one must pass." - Yosef Hayim Yerushalmi

"When you're in love, the whole world is Jewish." - Beverly Sills

"Lesson Number One: The Importance of Being Jewish" - Malcolm Gladwell

"I feel more Jewish than I do Iranian." - Said Sayrafiezadeh

"For me, peace should provide security to the Jewish people." - Ariel Sharon

"There is no Polish culture without Jewish culture." - Donald Tusk

"I am officially Jewish, but I'm Jewish in the same way the Olive Garden is an Italian restaurant." - A J Jacobs

"I was raised in the Jewish tradition, taught never to marry a Gentile woman, shave on a Saturday night and, most especially, never to shave a Gentile woman on a Saturday night." - Woody Allen

"The pursuit of knowledge for its own sake, an almost fanatical love of justice and the desire for personal independence - these are the features of the Jewish tradition which make me thank my stars that I belong to it." - Albert Einstein

"I come from a liberal tradition. I'm Jewish. My dad was a liberal. What I've found is that people who see themselves as thoughtful, caring, educated and informed have swallowed psychiatry as the way." - Peter Breggin

"is the servant, not of the British public, or of the British Empire, but of International Jewish Finance. This charge must be preferred against a man who has so signally violated British tradition in the course of this war." - William Joyce

"What are you going to do to preserve a tradition that is the peculiar and unique culture that Judaism inculcates? The American Jewish community is not going to survive by lining up against its common enemy." - Arthur Hertzberg

"Every Yom Kippur, Jewish tradition requires a strict spiritual inventory. You aren't supposed to just sit around feeling guilty, but to take action in the real world to set things right." - Naomi Wolf

" deep the ruts of tradition and conformity!" - Henry David Thoreau

"Art is collective. Always, it has a tradition behind it." - Joanna Russ

"Just because something is tradition doesn't make it right." - Anthony J. D'Angelo

"I'm not into division. I'm into coordination, discipline and tradition." - Sun Ra

"Perl has a long tradition of working around compilers." - Larry Wall

"I believe in tradition and innovation, authenticity and passion." - Jose Andres Puerta

"I'm from East Berlin. I grew up in the Bertold Brecht, Kurt Weil tradition, also in the old hippie tradition." - Nina Hagen

"We were born in a Jewish world, as part of a Jewish faith tradition. We had to translate ourselves into the neo-Platonic thinking Greek world; that took us about 400 years. Then, finally a man named Augustine, the Bishop of Hippo, recast Christianity in terms of neo-Platonic thought." - John Shelby Spong

"For neo-conservatism is a quintessentially Jewish project: a re-sanctification in everyday life of the core values of western civilisation, and the achievement of human potential through virtuous practice. The neo-cons' crucial insight is that public signals through law, custom and tradition are the key to getting people to behave well. And that is a Jewish insight." - Melanie Phillips

"Following the Rumanian tradition, garlic is used in excess to keep the vampires away... Following the Jewish tradition, a dispenser of schmaltz (liquid chicken fat) is kept on the table to give the vampires heartburn if they get through the garlic defense." - Calvin Trillin

"God is not good, or wise, or intelligent anyway that we know. So, people like Maimonides in the Jewish tradition, Eboncina in the Muslim tradition, Thomas Aquinas in the Christian tradition, insisted that we couldn't even say that God existed because our concept of existence is far too limited and they would have been horrified by the ease with which we talk about God today." - Karen Armstrong

"Koolaid is goyish. All Drake's Cakes are goyish. Pumpernickel is Jewish, and, as you know, white bread is very goyish. Instant potatoes - goyish. Black cherry soda's very Jewish. Macaroons are very Jewish - very Jewish cake. Fruit salad is Jewish. Lime Jell-O is goyish. Lime soda is very goyish. Trailer parks are so goyish that Jews won't go near them." - Lenny Bruce

"I'm Jewish. Went to a Jewish school." - Jonathan Glazer

"The Republican Party is not in the hands of the Jewish lobby in America as the Democratic Party must look quite often to Jewish money to finance candidates." - Pete Mccloskey

"San Francisco is really fun and liberal, and it's my kind of politics. It's like being Jewish in front of Jewish people." - Elayne Boosler

"Most people are blown away by the fact that Beck is Jewish... and Billy Joel. I didn't know he was Jewish." - Guy Oseary

"I view the major features of my own odyssey as a set of mostly fortunate contingencies. I was not destined by inherited mentality or family tradition to become a paleontologist. I can locate no tradition for scientific or intellectual careers anywhere on either side of my eastern European Jewish background. [...] I view my serious and lifelong commitment to baseball in entirely the same manner: purely as a contingent circumstance of numerous, albeit not entirely capricious, accidents." - Stephen Jay Gould

"There is only one thing better than tradition and that is the original and eternal life out of which all tradition takes its rise." - James Russell Lowell

"Tradition kills originality; you keep repeating the same things in tradition! Behave like the sky; always create new and different things; be original!" - Mehmet Murat Ildan

"the Jewish press in the USA is solely responsible for our poor publicity." - Mohammed Reza Pahlavi

"You know what I ask Jewish liberals? 'Why don't you preach what you practice?'" - Dennis Prager

"The sincere Christian knows that what died in Auschwitz was not the Jewish people but Christianity." - Elie Wiesel

"Guilt is a Jewish invention improved upon by Christians for the last two thousand years." - Rita Mae Brown

"The older we get, the more Jewish we become in my family." - Erica Jong

"I was raped by a doctor ... which is so bittersweet for a Jewish girl." - Sarah Silverman

"Sniviling worm (...) a Jewish Uncle Tom who would have turned rat on Anne Frank." - Mark Williams

"I'm a Jewish kid who grew up loving hip hop in NY." - Hoodie Allen

"In the matrimonial life of the Jewish male every day is Yom Kippur." - Howard Jacobson

"Reggae music isn't Jewish, but a lot of the ideas are." - Matisyahu

"Both Jewish and Roman sources and traditions admit an empty tomb." - Josh Mcdowell

"Silence, this will surprise you not, isn't really a Jewish concept." - Simon Schama

"I'm always very proud of belonging to three minorities: gay, Jewish, white South African." - Antony Sher

"The concept known as bal tashchit-'Do no destroy'-has a special significance in Jewish tradition...We are constantly being warned in our faith that the capricious, thoughtless, wasteful destruction of the elements and creatures of the earth is wrong...We should remind ourselves daily of our responsibility to all aspects of creation." - David Geffen

"Jews with unconventional identities should not have to wrestle alone at the intersection where their tradition seems to clash with their integrity as loving human beings. Like Moses responding to the travail of his brothers (Ex. 2:11), a caring halachic Jewish community should respond seriously to the heartfelt appeal of our contemporary sisters." - Vanessa L Ochs

"I am a judge born, raised, and proud of being a Jew. The demand for justice runs through the entirety of the Jewish tradition. I hope, in my years on the bench of the Supreme Court of the United States, I will have the strength and the courage to remain constant in the service of that demand." - Ruth Bader Ginsburg

"In the Jewish tradition of the Bible it says, "Speak to her softly, so that she will want to engage in sexual activity." In today's world, there's a little bit of a danger in that people don't really talk to each other. You see couples walking in the street, each one of them texting someone else. That worries me." - Ruth Westheimer

"It is true that the Jewish tradition emphasizes the moral mandate to save life. It also has a different position from the Catholic Church on the moral status of the embryo. It has a more developmental view of when human life, in the sense of personhood, begins than does the Catholic Church." - Michael Sandel

"The highest principles for our aspirations and judgments are given to us in the Jewish-Christian religious tradition. It is a very high goal which, with our weak powers, we can reach only very inadequately, but which gives a sure foundation to our aspirations and valuations." - Albert Einstein

"The Jewish tradition presents itself as the greatest revelation of God's truth that can be known in the world. That is why we call ourselves 'the chosen people.' It is not that we choose ourselves. It means that we have been elected by God and given the Torah." - David Novak

"When you look at food as an ethical issue in the Christian tradition, you don't find very much about it. You don't find, as you do in the Jewish or Islamic or Hindu traditions, a lot of restrictions saying you can eat this but you can't eat that." - Peter Singer

"When Zionism becomes co-extensive with Jewishness, Jewishness is pitted against the diversity that defines democracy, and if I may say so, betrays one of the most important ethical dimensions of the diasporic Jewish tradition: namely, the obligation of co-habitation with those different from ourselves." - Judith Butler

"The most important part of the process of mourning is regularly reciting kaddish in a synagogue. Kaddish is a doxology, which Jewish tradition has mandated children to recite daily in a synagogue during the year of mourning for a deceased parent and then on the anniversary of his or her death thereafter." - David Novak

"When men are oppressed, it's a tragedy. When women are oppressed, it's tradition." - Letty Cottin Pogrebin

"Prejudice is a product of ignorance that hides behind barriers of tradition." - Jasper Fforde

"Virtually every spiritual tradition teaches that your higher self is the presence of God within you." - Wayne Dyer

"Philosophers have a long tradition of marrying stupid women, from Socrates on. They think it clever." - Simon Gray

"He is as much a part of the Derby tradition as the Twin Spires themselves" - John Mallory Asher

"Rap has been a path between cultures in the best tradition of popular music." - Jay-Z

"But for tradition, we walk evermore to higher paths by brightening reason's lamp." - George Eliot

"Tradition and heritage are all dead peoples baggage. Stop carrying it. Move forward." - Doug Stanhope

"He who does not believe according to the tradition of the Catholic Church is an unbeliever." - John of Damascus

"The great works belong to no one nation, no one cultural tradition even. They are universal." - George Brandis

"When you're entrusted with a tradition, you've got to protect it." - George Steinbrenner

"Tradition is not the worship of ashes, but the preservation of fire." - Gustav Mahler

"Don't talk to me about naval tradition. It's nothing but rum, sodomy, and the lash." - Winston Churchill

"First time's a fluke; second time's a coincidence," said Velius. "Third time's tradition," finished Erik." - Alethea Kontis

"Christmas is not a myth, not a tradition, not a dream. It is a glorious reality." - Billy Graham

"Tradition is laziness." - Gustav Mahler

"Tradition is a kind of mental illness with a clear symptom of repetitiveness." - Mehmet Murat Ildan

"Homecoming means tradition." - Anonymous

"Tradition: how the vitality of the past enriches the life of the present." - T S Eliot

"Domains like Trade, Technology, Tourism, Talent and Tradition have the power to redefine existing paradigms." - Narendra Modi

"Tradition does not mean the living are dead, but that the dead are living." - Gilbert K Chesterton

"The bird that would soar above the plain of tradition and prejudice must have strong wings." - Kate Chopin

"There can be no doubt that archaeology has confirmed the substantial historicity of Old Testament tradition." - William F. Albright

"I'm not super-conservative, but a bit of tradition is nice." - Josephine De La Baume

"Tradition does not mean that the living are dead, it means that the dead are living." - Harold Macmillan

"The Faculty of Technology of Tohoku University is renowned for its tradition of practical studies." - Koichi Tanaka

"Darwin's idea of natural selection makes people uncomfortable because it reverses the direction of tradition." - Daniel Dennett

"With the advent of radio and recording, music became an industry rather than just a tradition." - Arlo Guthrie

"I've always loved musical theater. It's a bit of a family tradition." - Trey Anastasio

"I call myself a traditionalist, although I have fought against tradition all my life." - Philip Johnson

"Something is missing in our culture. We can't quite celebrate the scientific literary tradition." - Ian Mcewan

"Following the Romanian tradition, garlic is used in excess to keep the vampires away." - Calvin Trillin

"First I went to a Jewish school, when I was very little. But when I was 12, they put me in a school with a lot of traditions, and they were educated people and they were talking about Greece and the Parthenon and I don't know what. All the kids, all the girls they had already seen that and knew that from their family, and I would say, "What are you talking about, what's that?" It's not my world. My grandparents were very well-educated people, but in the Jewish tradition. They knew everything about the Bible." - Chantal Akerman

"When you mercilessly fire deadly bullets at innocent people taking part in a debate, when you attack the Jewish community, you attack our democracy, we will do everything possible to protect our Jewish community." - Helle Thorning-Schmidt

"Accept the true from whatever source it come, is sound rabbinic doctrine - even if it be from the pages of a devout Christian expositor or of an iconoclastic Biblical scholar, Jewish or non-Jewish." - Joseph H. Hertz

"My mom was Jewish, so some would call me Jewish." - Nathan Lane

"I'm part Jewish and part Christian, but I'm mostly Jewish." - Joey King

"As a first generation Jewish American, I have witnessed firsthand Jewish immigrants who have come to this Nation in order to create a better life for themselves, their families, and future generations." - Jan Schakowsky

"People often ask how I can reject the phrase 'woman writer' and not reject the phrase 'Jewish writer' - a preposterous question. 'Jewish' is a category of civilization, culture, and intellect, and 'woman' is a category of anatomy and physiology." - Cynthia Ozick

"I'm deeply curious about Jewish things. I've toyed around with the idea of going to rabbinical school." - Jonathan Safran Foer

"If you elect me the first Jewish justice of the peace, I'll reduce the speed limits to 54.95!" - Kinky Friedman

"Conscience is a Jewish invention." - Adolf Hitler

"Jewish men don't know anything." - Marilyn Monroe

"In reference to the area of the Jewish state: From the Brook of Egypt to the Euphrates." - Theodor Herzl

"I asked a Jewish man, "Do you know where Michigan Avenue is?" He said, "Yes", and walked away." - Henny Youngman

"A car hit a Jewish man. The paramedic says, "Are you comfortable?" The man says, "I make a good living."" - Henny Youngman

"I'm Jewish; I'm not religious at all, and I wouldn't pretend to know anything about Catholic politics." - Stephen Frears

"I'm half Jewish half WASP." - Lena Dunham

"I'm 100 percent Irish by birth, grew up Italian, and yet I constantly get cast as playing Jewish." - Heather Matarazzo

"My family was totally non-religious. There was no question we were Jewish, but we were not observant." - Elayne Boosler

"Jewish suffering is also a political factor, and whoever says that Hitler diminished our strength, is not telling the truth." - David

"Hey, I may loathe myself, but it has nothing to do with the fact that I'm Jewish." - Larry David

"Every year during their High Holy Days, the Jewish community reminds us all of our need for repentance and forgiveness." - Billy Graham

"I'm Jewish, and my family is Jewish. I was very interested in Woody Allen when I was growing up, but I don't think of myself as a Jewish writer. I'm more from suburbia, American suburbia. I'm more from the '70s than I am from Judaism." - Charlie Kaufman

"My dad was old school Jewish. Not do your taxes Jewish - steal your car Jewish." - Dov Davidoff

"When you look at food as an ethical issue in the Christian tradition, you don't find very much about it. You don't find, as you do in the Jewish or Islamic or Hindu traditions, a lot of restrictions saying you can eat this but you can't eat that. But what you do find is the idea that gluttony is a sin and that it's something that we ought to be ashamed of." - Peter Singer

"I would like to study Judaism. I feel that my own Jewish education was really quite superficial from a certain point of view. Although I think the values were very clear and were presented very clearly, there's - there were aspects of the whole tradition that were not emphasized. And, you know, I've come to those areas myself as I've grown older. But I would like to go deeper." - Leonard Cohen

"On areas like abortion where there is major disagreement among the mainstream religious groups in the Judeo-Christian tradition, I believe that requires a lot more caution. The Jewish position on abortion is very different from the Roman Catholic position. That is reason to be cautious about enacting laws rather than saying to the religious group: instruct your followers on these matters as matters of personal religious belief." - Bruce Babbitt

"[ To break the law] would still be an imperative. I guess we do it for both reasons. You try to be a Christian, you try to come from that tradition of the Jewish prophets and then Christ and everything since. That becomes your handbook. "Witness" is the key word. You witness against the injustice, against the atrocity, against the heavy-handedness, and all the rest. We try to make a statement to other people, and we try to say it's your responsibility, too." - Philip Berrigan

"I have never concealed the fact and said it before the court in 1938 that I came from an anti-Semitic past and tradition... I ask only that you look at my life historically and take it as history. I believe that from 1933 I truly represented the Lutheran-Christian outlook on the Jewish question as I revealed before the court but that I returned home after eight years' imprisonment as a completely different person." - Martin Niemoller

"Every tradition grows continually more venerable, and the more remote its origins, the more this is lost sight of. The veneration paid the tradition accumulates from generation to generation, until it at last becomes holy and excites awe." - Friedrich Nietzsche

"Warriorship does not refer to making war on others. Aggression is the source of our problems, not the solution. Warriorship is the tradition of human bravery, or the tradition of fearlessness." - Chogyam Trungpa

"Tradition means giving votes to the most obscure of all classes, our ancestors. It is the democracy of the dead. Tradition refuses to submit to the small and arrogant oligarchy of those who merely happen to be walking about." - Gilbert K Chesterton

"Tradition is what is in the heart and soul of your home, your country, and social environment. Tradition evolves, and it changes regardless of what you do to maintain it." - George Blake

"I think the approach to Islam as a tradition is helpful. Tradition helps us to focus on questions about authority and temporality, and about the language used in relation to the two." - Talal Asad

"Tradition is an aspiration to connect the Self with the Other. One "internalizes" the Other as one acquires a sense of what one's own tradition is, what one belongs to and what gives valid shape to one's life." - Talal Asad



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