(Rabbi Daniel Judson)
PERSONAL: Married Sandy Falk (an obstetrician). Religion: Jewish.
ADDRESSES: Agent—c/o Author Mail, Jewish Lights Publishing, Sunset Farm Offices, Route 4, P.O. Box 237, Woodstock, VT 05091.
CAREER: Temple Beth David of the South Shore, Canton, MA, rabbi.
(Editor, with Kerry M. Olitzky) The Rituals and Practices of a Jewish Life: A Handbook for Personal and Spiritual Renewal, with a foreword by Vanessa L. Ochs, illustrated by Joel Moskowitz, Jewish Lights Publishing (Woodstock, VT), 2002.
(With Nancy H. Wiener) Meeting at the Well: A Jewish Spiritual Guide to Being Engaged, with a foreword by Lawrence A. Hoffman, UAHC Press (New York, NY), 2002.
(With wife, Sandy Falk, and Steven A. Rapp) The Jewish Pregnancy Book: A Resource for the Soul, Body, and Mind during Pregnancy, Birth, and the First Three Months, Jewish Lights Publishing (Woodstock, VT), 2004.
(With Kerry M. Olitzky) Jewish Ritual: A Brief Introduction for Christians, Jewish Lights Publishing (Woodstock, VT), 2005.
SIDELIGHTS: Daniel Judson is a rabbi and the author of several books on Judaism. Some of his books, including Meeting at the Well: A Jewish Spiritual Guide to Being Engaged (with coauthor Nancy H. Wiener) and The Jewish Pregnancy Book: A Resource for the Soul, Body, and Mind during Pregnancy, Birth, and the First Three Months (written in collaboration with his wife, obstetrician Sandy Falk, and yoga practitioner Steven A. Rapp), help Jews to use their religion for support during times of change in their life. In The Jewish Pregnancy Book, the three authors draw on their specialties to provide a guide that "supports and acknowledges the whole being of the expectant Jewish mother," wrote a Jewish Woman contributor. Falk explains the medical side of pregnancy and birth, tracing the development of the fetus and discussing prenatal tests that doctors might recommend. Rapp suggests the use of the aleph-bet form of yoga, which uses poses that mimic the letters of the Hebrew alphabet, to help stay in physical shape during pregnancy. Judson, meanwhile, provides a Jewish spiritual perspective on the process, including prayers, rituals, and discussions of such religious questions as at what point in development a baby receives his or her soul. The resulting book is "a delightful and spiritual celebration of life's beginnings," concluded a Publishers Weekly critic.
In Jewish Ritual: A Brief Introduction for Christians Judson and Rabbi Kerry M. Olitzky discuss the histories of various Jewish traditions, including wearing kippahs and tefillin, keeping the Shabbat and studying the Torah. The two authors examine the scriptural bases for each ritual, its history, and its parallel rituals in Christianity. "The format is easy to follow," George Cohen wrote in Booklist, "and the language quite accessible." "Given today's permeable religious boundaries and the cross-fertilization between traditions," wrote a Publishers Weekly contributor, "this handbook should be warmly welcomed on the religious bookshelf."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, January 1, 2005, George Cohen, review of Jewish Ritual: A Brief Introduction for Christians, p. 789.
Jewish Woman, spring, 2004, review of The Jewish Pregnancy Book: A Resource for the Soul, Body, and Mind during Pregnancy, Birth, and the First Three Months.
Publishers Weekly, November 24, 2003, review of The Jewish Pregnancy Book, p. 61; January 17, 2005, review of Jewish Ritual, p. 51.