Monday, October 25, 2004

World Divine Religions :Judaism

Judaism Introduction :

Judaism is the oldest and smallest of the world's four great monotheistic religions. About 12 million followers around the world. Most Jewish people in the world live in Israel or the USA. The largest European Jewish community is in France. Judaism does not seek converts. Those who convert to Judaism must undertake the adherence of Torah (Jewish Law), as well as, if they are men, circumcision. The symbol of Judaism is the Magen ( star ) of David.

Holy Book :

The Torah (which Christians call the Old Testament), and chiefly the first 5 books. At least one copy of the Torah, in Hebrew, is kept back in every synagogue in the form of a hand-written parchment tube. The Talmud, a law and explanation on the Torah applying it to life in later and changed circumstances.

Festivals :

In Judaism Hanukkah, the festival of illumination, is celebrated by the lighting of candles and the preparation of traditional potato cakes. Although it is often seen today as a sign of the endurance of the Jewish people, in Christian countries where Christmas is the major festival, Hanukkah has become the Jewish alike with presents given to children.

Sects of Judaism :

Jews are divided according to their beliefs and practices and according to their racial origins. * Ashkenazi Jews* Sephardi Jews

Orthodox Jews:

Orthodox Jews pursue the original knowledge and customs of the faith closely. They believe that the Torah and the Talmud were given by God directly to the Jewish People in, and so they look upon these documents as being God's real words and of the uppermost power, in setting down the traditions and laws of Judaism.
"Ultra-Orthodox" Jews comply with religious laws very firmly. They live in divided communities and follow their personal traditions. To some degree they keep distant from the world around them. The "Ultra-Orthodox" is not a expression that Jews like very much, and it is more acceptable to use the word "Harediā€.

Hasidic Jews :

Hasidic Jews are a sub-group of Haredi Jews, but the two terms are not exchangeable. The crucial basics of Hasidic Judaism are the elevated significance given to theology rather than learning, and the admiration given to the head of each of the many sects within the group.

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