g Text Version
Beauty & Self
Books & Music
Food & Wine
Health & Fitness
Hobbies & Crafts
Home & Garden
News & Politics
Religion & Spirituality
Travel & Culture
TV & Movies

Bored? Games!
Take a Quiz
Rate My Photo

Home Improvement
Women's Fashion
Small Office/Home Office
Holiday/Seasonal Cooking
Crafts for Kids

All times in EST

Full Schedule
g Judaism Site

BellaOnline's Judaism Editor


To Kindle A Soul - A Book Review

Guest Author - Lisa Pinkus

Lawrence Kelemen, the author of To Kindle A Soul, was drawn into observant Judaism after hearing a great sage speak to a group of men regarding child rearing. The author – with years of involvement in American secular education – had never witnessed such a large group of men come together to learn how to be good fathers. This talk and many talks that occurred after inspired Kelemen’s own book.

To Kindle A Soul is filled with statistics that may overwhelm or bore its readers. But, Kelemen ties this empirical research to the ancient traditions and codes in Judaism. Kelemen speaks of a tradition first shared at Mount Sinai – “G-d taught that all creation proceeds in two stages. First, potential must be brought into existence. Second, it must be realized. Both stages are necessary – this is the law of spiritual physics.”

This is the premise from which Kelemen’s perspective on child raising stems from. His book is not necessarily a “how to” book, though there are many suggestions for a variety of issues such as sleep, attention, food and exercise. He also focuses on building self-esteem and resilience, developing altruism and empathy and transmitting our values to our children.

The book is intended to grow better parents as much as it is to build “whole” children. It introduces concepts from which a parent can create a parenting style that will model appropriate values, set firm limits and develop firm boundaries.

One of the first notions that Kelemen introduces is that of ‘planting and building’. Planting seeds, an essential component of child rearing, does not render immediate effects. The slow, natural growth occurs over time – sprouting, extending and growing. Building, however, yields immediate results. Unlike planting seeds, building is somewhat limiting in that it does not give way to future crops. Nevertheless, the two are both important for successful child-raising.

Parents who witness the blooming buds from their seed sowing gather those moments to write down in the baby books. They smile with an “aha” as they observe something they “taught” finally sinking in. A child who steps in to stand up for another child who is being bullied or a child grasping the concept of Tzedakah and caring for others are examples from a seed-planting harvest. Parents providing structure for the nighttime routine or a suitable environment for studying are “building” proper structures for their children.

The remainder of Kelemen’s book applies the concepts of planting and building to all areas of childrearing. He concludes with the charge that human existence is based upon the drive to continuously better ourselves and that engaging consciously in this process allows us to plant and build the proper foundation from which the souls of our children can be ignited.

I purchased this book upon recommendation from my Rabbi.
This site needs an editor - click to learn more!

Add To+Kindle+A+Soul+%2D+A+Book+Review to Twitter Add To+Kindle+A+Soul+%2D+A+Book+Review to Facebook Add To+Kindle+A+Soul+%2D+A+Book+Review to MySpace Add To+Kindle+A+Soul+%2D+A+Book+Review to Del.icio.us Digg To+Kindle+A+Soul+%2D+A+Book+Review Add To+Kindle+A+Soul+%2D+A+Book+Review to Yahoo My Web Add To+Kindle+A+Soul+%2D+A+Book+Review to Google Bookmarks Add To+Kindle+A+Soul+%2D+A+Book+Review to Stumbleupon Add To+Kindle+A+Soul+%2D+A+Book+Review to Reddit

RSS | Related Articles | Editor's Picks Articles | Top Ten Articles | Previous Features | Site Map

For FREE email updates, subscribe to the Judaism Newsletter

Past Issues

Printer Friendly
tell friend
Tell a Friend
Email Editor

Content copyright © 2015 by Lisa Pinkus. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Lisa Pinkus. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact BellaOnline Administration for details.


g features
Archives | Site Map


Past Issues

Less than Monthly

BellaOnline on Facebook

| About BellaOnline | Privacy Policy | Advertising | Become an Editor |
Website copyright © 2015 Minerva WebWorks LLC. All rights reserved.

BellaOnline Editor