What is Reform Zionism?
Reform Zionism, also known as Progressive Zionism is the ideology of the Zionist arm of the Reform or Progressive branch of Judaism. ARZA Canada is the Canadian Reform Movement's Zionist organization, which has the mission of connecting Reform Jews with Israel. In Israel, Reform Zionism is associated with the Israel Movement for Progressive Judaism.
By the time of the establishment of the State of Israel, many Reform Jews saw the need for a Jewish national home in Eretz Yisrael, and began working to conceptualize a Zionism that took the progressive ideals of Reform Judaism, and the particularist needs of the Jewish people, into account.
"Reform Zionism views Israel as a nation in which the uniqueness of Judaism can bloom again and show itself in everyday life"
Reform Zionism sees the role of the State of Israel - as the means by which the messianic era can be achieved - as Or L'Goyim
, a "light unto the nations," a national example of ideal prophetic principles of justice and peace. For the Reform Zionist, this means that by working to make Israel a better place, one can lead the world in working towards a state of perfection. Due to this, the Reform Zionist movement is heavily involved in social activism in Israel.
As a religious, rather than political, ideology, Reform Zionism and its organizations do not see themselves as inherently political, although the Reform Zionist movement flexes its political muscles in the World Zionist Organization and in Israeli society to advance its progressive ideals.
"Reform Zionism presumes an ongoing interaction Netzer Olami is the Zionist youth movement of Progressive Jews throughout the World. It is the youth movement of the World Union for Progressive Judaism and of ARZENU, the Zionist arm of the worldwide Reform movement geared to high school students. Netzer נצ"ר is an acronym for Noar Tzioni Reformi, which means Reform Zionist Youth. (for high school aged students).
between Progressive Judaism in Israel and ...
in the Diaspora."
TaMaR (T'nuat Magshimim Reformim) is for university aged students. In North America, NFTY is officially a snif (branch) of Netzer, and KESHER is a partner organization of TaMaR. See the variety of Youth programs available.
"Without authentic Jewish community there can be
no authentic Jewish experience."
promotes Zionist education in our schools, congregations, youth movements, and camps to make Israel a part of the sacred identity of Reform Jews.
encourages and promotes aliyah, as well as the sacred obligation of first-hand experience in Israel through long and short term trips to Israel.
values a true Jewish democracy granting equal rights and giving voice to the majority while protecting the minority.
fights the Orthodox Monopoly held over Israel.
resists the weakening of civil society in Israel.
teaches us that extremism does not accomplish our goals
believes that the sanctity of Jewish life comes before the sanctity of Jewish land.
believes that the solution to the violence is the creation of two states with peaceful and secure borders.
believes in tikkun olam b'shem Adonai - repairing the world in the name of God - by helping the needy in our midst.
strives for a ratified Israeli constitution guaranteeing freedom of religion and freedom from religion.
strives for a Supreme Court that protects the rights of liberal Jews and recognizes the legitimacy of our clergy.
is not be divided along the lines of religion, race, politics, gender, or sexual orientation.