What is “Jewish” about Jewish Science?
Rabbi Morris Lichtenstein, founder of the Society, based his principles and methods primarily on the Torah, the Psalms, and the writings of the prophets. The method of affirmation, for example, by which people express their desires in affirmative terms in the belief that such expression will assist in bringing about the desired state, parallels the method of expression found in the Book of Psalms. The relationship between spirituality and health can be found in a variety of areas of Jewish thought, from the philosophical writings of Moses Maimonides to the poetry of Judah Halevi, from the traditions of Hasidism to the prayers of the kabbalists.
The ceremonial programs at the Society use abbreviated siddurim which emphasize Jewish Science philosophy, visualization, and silent meditation. Our weekly programs consisting of learning sessions and worship services have been held on Sunday mornings in order to avoid conflict with traditional synagogue attendance. Many of our members, however, do consider the Society their spiritual home, and so special celebrations for Shabbat and the major holidays have been added to the calendar.
Membership in the Society of Jewish Science is open to anyone who wishes to connect with its philosophy and with the power of Jewish spirituality. We are, and have always been, a progressive, inclusive community. Tehilla Lichtenstein, wife of the founder of Jewish Science, led the Society for 35 years, and is reputed to be the first woman to occupy a Jewish pulpit in the United States.