Finally Good News From Hollywood

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MSNBC is reporting that Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore have left the Kabbalah kraze:

“Ashton and Demi used to have an impeccable attendance record,â€? says one source with close ties to the Kabballah Centre in L.A. Another source close to the couple says it’s been “monthsâ€? since the two attended services or participated in the Shabbat dinner after Friday services. Adding fuel to the fire is the fact that Kutcher was just last week spotted shopping on Robertson Blvd. without his trademark red string. (MORE)

Could Madonna be next?

Posted on January 29, 2008

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9 thoughts on “Finally Good News From Hollywood

  1. lornewel

    Why does the writer of this blog entry call it “good news” for someone to miss Shabbat services? And may I assume the term “Kabbalah kraze” was not meant to be complimentary?

    As a gentile participating in reading articles on this website and participating in its discussion for the purpose of increased knowlege and understanding, I recall being congratulated by one of your regulars for “getting it” when I stumbled into some way of expressing myself that he perceived to be Kabbalistic.

    Is Kaballah not considered “real” Judaism? The article linked to the blog makes refence to Christian Science. Do mainstream Jews view Kabbalah like mainstream Christians view Christian Science – neither Christian nor science?

  2. Meredith Kesner Lewis Post author

    I don’t think that it’s good news when Jews miss Shabbat services. But neither Moore nor Kutcher are Jewish. And I don’t think that Hollywood’s superficial obsession with Kaballah, without understanding it, is good for Judaism. Kaballah is definitely one aspect of Judaism but it is not even close to being a main tenant, ritual or belief. Simply practicing Kaballah is not practicing Judaism.

  3. clara1


    I agree with you so much.

    The Hollywood crowd even got the attentaion of Benjamine Bleuch, a well-known Orthodox Jewish Rabbi, who thought non-Jews going ’Kaballah’ was great because it brought attention to Jews. I, to say the least was flabbergasted when he said this because he sure doesen’t like Reform Jews.

    At least Demi and Ashton seemed to keep quite about it, not like Madonnah who shouted it to the roof tops.

    Being new to Judaism, I think that Kaballah is a long way off for me if ever. I once investigated a site to get information about Kaballah and they have been calling and sending me emails ever sense. The group is in CA and having lived in CA, I know the type of groups that are there.

    Thanks for the info and good news

  4. clara1


    /////Why does the writer of this blog entry call it “good news” for someone to miss Shabbat services? And may I assume the term “Kabbalah kraze” was not meant to be complimentary?

    I am new to Judaism (almost three years a convert) and about 15 years of study. But the last place I would start would be Kabalah. I am curious about it, but I have a lot to learn about just ole plain Judaism yet.

    I found it presumputious that gentiles or non-Jews would be accepted into this part of Judaism. The Real Rabbis don’t uphold what Madonna and the others did. The place they go to in CA is in it for the money. I think they work like Scientology. I have talked with them and all they wanted was money for courses and they promised me that the problems in my life would get better and I would be happy. I guess if I had slept on the Kaballah book my Bi-Polar problems would go away. They still call me and email me. I chose to spend the money on other Jewish books, Dr.s and Meds. And, guess what, I’m getting better.

    I was raised Christian so I don’t really know how a new Christian is started out–I would presume with the Gospels and stories about Jesus, not at the end of the NT.

    If you remember, I didn’t trust you in the beginning but finally came to understand that you wanted to learn. So you have been at this a while and I could see how someone could perceive you to have thoughts that could be seen as Kabbalistic from the Jewish point of view. I was, at one time, studying to become a nun in the Franciscian Order in the Catholic church. We were taught to do contemplation and other deep thinking prayers which I am told not to do in Judaism. That’s only for Kabbalah???

    I understand that for one to study Kabbalah, one must be over 40, and study with a (Orthodox) Rabbi. I wonder if you should talk to a Rabbi for more information because I think you think deep and would understand.


  5. The Doctor


    Trust me, the Kaballah taught in the Kaballah centers, from what I can glean, is not the real kaballah, any more than TM teaches real Buddhism.

    And for the record, you can study Kaballah at the Conservative seminaries…

  6. mbczion


    Trying to study Kabbalah before Torah and Gemarra is like trying to study quantum mechanics before Introduction to Physics. You can try, but GOOD LUCK. Of course I want to study Kabbalah one day, but I would like to finish the Talmud first.

    מנחם בן צבי הכהן

  7. clara1

    Doc and MBC,

    I agree with both of you. When they push for the money and promise great things, I get suspicious.


  8. Ezekah

    A few days ago, I attended a lecture on the Kabbalah that was led by Professor Rabbi Pinchas Giller. He was a fascinating speaker, though he had a tendency to meander in his answers. Part of his talk was about the Kabbalah centers in Hollywood. While he didn’t outright denounce them, he explained that selling stuff was part of their history. Due to this strong mercantile component, he did question the Kabbalistic validity of some of their sales, like the charms. But, he doesn’t think that a comparison to Scientology is valid. The KC just focuses on selling stuff, they don’t try to exert control over all aspects of a person’s life like Scientology does.

  9. clara1

    As I said, When they push for the money and promise great things, I get suspicious.

    And I just hope I live long enough to finish studying the Talmud, let-a-lone Kabbalah.


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