The process of converting to Judaism requires penetration of the innermost character as well as spiritual being, and demanding a thorough examination of one’s behavior and other things which can culminate in the conversion to a brand-new identity. Besides, due to the consequences to both the convert’s psyche and to Jewish people – especially at times when the conversion to Judaism was barred by most ruling powers – rabbis always urge those who want to convert to consider their motivations.
Step by Step of the conversion process
Step 1 – Learning
Candidates who are willing to convert to Judaism are encouraged to learn extensively about Jewish culture and religion, to know a variety of Jewish practices and to converse with a rabbi in the process. You will begin by enrolling in Judaism 101 or Introduction to Judaism classes, which are mostly offered at Jewish community centers, synagogues, and other institutions related to Jewish.
If you find an institution and comes into terms with a rabbi that you are ready for conversion, the formal procedure starts.
Step 2 – Circumcision
If you are male, the very first step is undergoing circumcision or brit milahs. If you are circumcised, you go through a ritual extraction of a drop of blood known as hatafat dam brit. The Reform and Reconstructionist rabbis provide you with a choice regarding hataft dam brit in case you are circumcised.
Step 3 – Rabbinic Court (Beit Din)
After circumcision has completely healed, a Rabbinic Court is then assembled. This is a 3-person court that is comprised of one rabbi and two observant Jews who have a deep knowledge of the laws of conversion. The court determines your sincerity by evaluating your motivation, knowledge, and your intentions to live as a Jew.
Furthermore, for traditional Jews, you must first ascent to the kabbalat ol ha-mitzvot, that is the acceptance of the yoke of commandments – the willingness to live under the validity and commitment to the performance of the commandments. Liberal rabbis ask for a commitment to perform the selected commandments.
Step 4 – Ritual Bath (Mikveh)
After the court is assured the convert’s sincerity, the convert then immerses into a mikveh or a ritual pool, as well as an ocean or the lake if the ritual pool is unavailable. In other cases, a swimming pool can be used although only specific non-Orthodox authorities allow a swimming pool. The water is usually symbolic of liminality, or the in-between state, of the candidate. The immersion referred to as tevillah cleanses the convert of the past misdeeds and prepares the candidate for a different destiny and future.
Following the immersion, the convert is then officially considered a Jew and can now recite legitimately the blessing for immersion which involves the words ‘who has sanctified us with the commandments.’
Step 5 – Hebrew Name
Now the convert takes a Hebrew name. However, the name only isn’t sufficient to find someone in the Jewish tradition. When the Jews are summoned to the Torah, or to sign legal documents, their parents’ names are included in their Hebrew name to find them in the Jewish spiritual space. Traditionally, the convert adopts Braham and Sara as their spiritual parents and in legal instances is known as ‘ben Avraham Avinu’, also known as ‘son of our Father, Abraham, as well as ‘bat Sarah Imenu’ also known as ‘the daughter of our Mother, Sarah.’
Step 6 – Post Conversion Period
Life after conversion can be challenging. This is because the convert is required to reestablish your relations with your birth parents and develop new ones with the newly acquired Jewish families. However, with persistence, patience, and the realization that the e
The process of converting to Judaism requires penetration of the innermost character as well as spiritual being, and demanding a thorough examination of one’s behavior and other things which can culminate in the conversion to a brand-new identity. Besides, due to the consequences to both the convert’s psyche and to Jewish people – especially at times when the conversion to Judaism was barred by most ruling powers – rabbis always urge those who want to convert to consider their motivations.Read More →