Reconstructionist Judaism (Hebrew: 'יהדות מחדשת) (Yiddish: יידישקייַט רקאָנסטראָאָקטיביט) is a modern American-based Jewish movement based on the ideas of Mordecai Kaplan (1881–1983). The movement views Judaism as a progressively evolving civilization. It originated as a branch of Conservative Judaism, before it splintered. The movement developed from the late 1920s to 1940s, and it established a rabbinical college in 1968.
There is substantial theological diversity within the movement. Halakha is not considered binding, but is treated as a valuable cultural remnant that should be upheld unless there is reason for the contrary. The movement emphasizes positive views toward modernism, and has an approach to Jewish custom which aims toward communal decision making through a process of education and distillation of values from traditional Jewish sources.
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