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Participant Observation Assignment - Essay Example

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The orthodox Jewish synagogue or shul at 4102 El Camino Real, Palo Alto, CA 94306 is perhaps a real reminder of the grandeur and pomp of the US orthodox Jewry’s religious practices. This writer visited the shul on the Sunday last to observe what could be called a congregation…
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Download file to see previous pages s “committed to approaching the modern world through the perspective of Halakah (transliterated as halacha) embracing religious Zionism, and growing in Jewish learning and observance” ( Halakah is a collection of Jewish laws that have been handed down from the biblical times. Thus Emek Beracha is a synagogue of Orthodox Jews who have promised to uphold the religious traditions of Orthodox Judaism.
Orthodox Judaism has acquired a significant dimension as a social catalyst among the upwardly mobile Jews across the metropolitan US cities. This wave of pervasive religious behavior is a relatively newer phenomenon among the young Orthodox Jews who otherwise tend to regard religion as an ultra-conservative custom-centric behavioral tendency.
When the writer appeared at the entrance to the shul it was just 8.00 am and being a Sunday there were quite a few congregants for the morning assembly guided by the Rabbi. The assembly in Judaism was being conducted as if it were another sermon. The first thing to strike the writer was the type of architecture of the shul. In fact as almost every other synagogue in the US Emek Beracha, has been highly influenced by the typically American architectural traditions. The divergent features from the Christian church aren’t many. In fact similarities tend to be closer and more or less shared between the two. Such common features include arches and domes. The windows and doors are designed in the same way as those in the church. The structure has a striking resemblance to an open study, with a large hall for prayer. The writer didn’t see a separate beth midrash (or house of study). However the significance of worship at a shul lies in the fact that the participants in prayer are well-intentioned in their effort to understand the “word of God”.
Many of the participants at the shul were dressed according to the tradition and were in prayer posture. Their ages ranged from kids of threes and fours to elderly ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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