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Stories of rape, murder, adultery, and conquest raise crucial issues in the Hebrew Bible, and their interpretation helps societies form their religious and moral beliefs. From the sacrifice of Isaac to the adultery of David, narratives of sin engender vivid analysis and debate, powering the myths that form the basis of the religious covenant, or the relationship between a people and their God.
Rereading these stories in their different forms and varying contexts, Alan F. Segal demonstrates the significance of sinning throughout history and today. Drawing on literary and historical theory, as well as research in the social sciences, he explores the motivation for creating sin stories, their prevalence in the Hebrew Bible, and their possible meaning to Israelite readers and listeners. After introducing the basics of his approach and outlining several hermeneutical concepts, Segal conducts seven linked studies of specific narratives, using character and text to clarify problematic terms such as "myth," "typology," and "orality." Following the reappearance and reinterpretation of these narratives in later compositions, he proves their lasting power in the mythology of Israel and the encapsulation of universal, perennially relevant themes. Segal ultimately positions the Hebrew Bible as a foundational moral text and a history book, offering uncommon insights into the dating of biblical events and the intentions of biblical authors.
When non-Orthodox Jews become frum (religious), they encounter much more than dietary laws and Sabbath prohibitions. They find themselves in the midst of a whole new culture, involving matchmakers, homemade gefilte fish, and Yiddish-influenced grammar. Becoming Frum explains how these newcomers learn Orthodox language and culture through their interactions with community veterans and other newcomers. Some take on as much as they can as quickly as they can, going beyond the norms of those raised in the community. Others maintain aspects of their pre-Orthodox selves, yielding unique combinations, like Matisyahu's reggae music or Hebrew words and sing-song intonation used with American slang, as in "mamish (really) keepin' it real." Sarah Bunin Benor brings insight into the phenomenon of adopting a new identity based on ethnographic and sociolinguistic research among men and women in an American Orthodox community. Her analysis is applicable to other situations of adult language socialization, such as students learning medical jargon or Canadians moving to Australia. Becoming Frum offers a scholarly and accessible look at the linguistic and cultural process of "becoming."
Neo-Hasidism applies the Hasidic masters' spiritual insights-of God's presence everywhere, of seeking the magnificent within the everyday, in doing all things with love and joy, uplifting all of life to become a vehicle of God's service-to contemporary Judaism, as practiced by men and women who do not live within the strictly bounded world of the Hasidic community. This first-ever anthology of Neo-Hasidic philosophy brings together the writings of its progenitors: five great twentieth-century European and American Jewish thinkers-Hillel Zeitlin, Martin Buber, Abraham Joshua Heschel, Shlomo Carlebach, and Zalman Schachter-Shalomi-plus a young Arthur Green. The thinkers reflect on the inner life of the individual and their dreams of creating a Neo-Hasidic spiritual community. The editors' introductions and notes analyze each thinker's contributions to Neo-Hasidic thought and influence on the movement. Zeitlin and Buber initiated a renewal of Hasidism for the modern world; Heschel's work is quietly infused with Neo-Hasidic thought; Carlebach and Schachter-Shalomi re-created Neo-Hasidism for American Jews in the 1960s; and Green is the first American-born Jewish thinker fully identified with the movement. Previously unpublished materials by Carlebach and Schachter-Shalomi include an interview with Schachter-Shalomi about his decision to leave Chabad-Lubavitch and embark on his own Neo-Hasidic path.
First published in 2004, The Jewish Study Bible is a landmark,
one-volume resource tailored especially for the needs of students
of the Hebrew Bible. It has won acclaim from readers in all
Whether on a national or a personal level, everyone has a complex relationship with their closest neighbors. Where are the borders? How much interaction should there be? How are conflicts solved? Ancient Israel was one of several small nations clustered in the eastern Mediterranean region between the large empires of Egypt and Mesopotamia in antiquity. Frequently mentioned in the Bible, these other small nations are seldom the focus of the narrative unless they interact with Israel. The ancient Israelites who produced the Hebrew Bible lived within a rich context of multiple neighbors, and this context profoundly shaped Israel. Indeed, it was through the influence of the neighboring people that Israel defined its own identity-in terms of geography, language, politics, religion, and culture. Ancient Israel's Neighbors explores both the biblical portrayal of the neighboring groups directly surrounding Israel-the Canaanites, Philistines, Phoenicians, Edomites, Moabites, Ammonites, and Arameans-and examines what we can know about these groups through their own literature, archaeology, and other sources. Through its analysis of these surrounding groups, this book will demonstrate in a direct and accessible manner the extent to which ancient Israelite identity was forged both within and against the identities of its close neighbors. Animated by the latest and best research, yet written for students, this book will invite readers into journey of scholarly discovery to explore the world of Israel's identity within its most immediate ancient Near Eastern context.
You are invited to enter the new-old pathway of Neo-Hasidism-a movement that uplifts key elements of Hasidism's Jewish revival of two centuries ago to reexamine the meaning of existence, see everything anew, and bring the world as it is and as it can be closer together. This volume brings this discussion into the twenty-first century, highlighting Neo-Hasidic approaches to key issues of our time. Eighteen contributions by leading Neo-Hasidic thinkers open with the credos of Zalman Schachter-Shalomi and Arthur Green. Or Rose wrestles with reinterpreting the rebbes' harsh teachings concerning non-Jews. Ebn Leader assesses the perils of trusting one's whole being to a single personality: can Neo-Hasidism endure as a living tradition without a rebbe? Shaul Magid candidly calibrates Shlomo Carlebach: how "the singing rabbi" transformed him and why Magid eventually walked away. Other contributors engage questions such as: How might women enter this hitherto gendered sphere created by and for men? How can we honor and draw nourishment from other religions' teachings? Can the rebbes' radiant wisdom guide those who struggle with self-diminishment to reclaim wholeness? Together these intellectually honest and spiritually robust conversations inspire us to grapple anew with Judaism's legacy and future.
This is a sweeping and powerful narrative history of the Jewish people from biblical times to today. Based on the latest scholarship and richly illustrated, it is the most authoritative and accessible chronicle of the Jewish experience available. Michael Brenner tells a dramatic story of change and migration deeply rooted in tradition, taking readers from the mythic wanderings of Moses to the unspeakable atrocities of the Holocaust; from the Babylonian exile to the founding of the modern state of Israel; and from the Sephardic communities under medieval Islam to the shtetls of eastern Europe and the Hasidic enclaves of modern-day Brooklyn. The book is full of fascinating personal stories of exodus and return, from that told about Abraham, who brought his newfound faith into Canaan, to that of Holocaust survivor Esther Barkai, who lived on a kibbutz established on a German estate seized from the Nazi Julius Streicher as she awaited resettlement in Israel. Describing the events and people that have shaped Jewish history, and highlighting the important contributions Jews have made to the arts, politics, religion, and science, "A Short History of the Jews" is a compelling blend of storytelling and scholarship that brings the Jewish past marvelously to life.
The intellectual legacy of one of the twentieth century s greatest religious thinkers explained by a leading theologian of our day.
It is only through experiencing the contradictions in human existence, through being overwhelmed by the divine presence, through the finite human being feeling terror-stricken by the infinite majesty of God that one can develop an authentic religious personality. David Hartman (From Chapter 6)
Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik (1903 1993) profoundly influenced modern Orthodox Judaism in the United States and Judaism as a whole by opening up a discourse between the tradition of Torah study and Western philosophical thought. The future of both religious Zionism in Israel and of Orthodoxy in America hangs to a great extent on how we interpret his intellectual legacy. Dr. David Hartman s penetrating analysis of Rabbi Soloveitchik s work reveals a Judaism committed to intellectual courage, integrity, and openness.
A renowned theologian and philosopher, Hartman meticulously explores the subtlety and complexity of Rabbi Soloveitchik s theological thought, exposing a surprising intersection of halakhic tradition and modern Western theology a confrontation that deepens and expands our spiritual understanding. Hartman s provocative interpretation bears witness to the legitimacy of remaining loyal to the Judaic tradition without sacrificing one s intellectual freedom and honesty.
The first complete English translation of the Hebrew classic Sefer Ha-Aggadah brings to the English-speaking world the greatest and best-loved anthology of classical Rabbinic literature ever compiled. First published in Odessa in 1908-11, it was recognized immediately as a masterwork in its own right, and reprinted numerous times in Israel.
In Zionism, the late Nathan Rotenstreich traces the dialectical connections between Zionism's past and present based on his contention that the Jewish nation comprises both the State of Israel and the Diaspora. He also addresses relations between both Israel and the Diaspora, on the one hand, and Israel and the Arab world, on the other. Written a short time before Rotenstreich's death, Zionism can be regarded as his spiritual and ideological legacy.
Mystical and practical wisdom for daily life.
The least known of the Hasidic masters teachings the "hanhagot, " or spiritual practices are at the heart of this book. These short lists of instructions were created for their followers, inspirational treasures intended to be carried with you at all times. They were to be read again and again providing spiritual guidance, centering, and aid in bringing joy and God s presence into daily life.
Practical, personal, and wise, these brief teachings range from straightforward instructions to visualization exercises, meditations, and mantras. Also included are the "hanhagot" of two neo-Hasidic thinkers: the modern journalist and mystic Hillel Zeitlin (1871 1942), and the contemporary theologian Arthur Green.
"Robert Feather has been able to uncover the first link between Akhenaten and the Qumran community, through the Copper Scroll. This new evidence will completely change our understanding of the relationship between biblical Moses and historical Akhenaten." Ahmed Osman, author of Moses and Akhenaten "Empowered with technical expertise and tenacious research, Robert Feather stimulates excited debate with The Mystery of the Copper Scroll of Qumran." Christopher Dunn, author of The Giza Power Plant The Dead Sea Scrolls comprise the oldest collection of biblical documents ever discovered. Of the Dead Sea Scrolls, none has baffled experts more than the Copper Scroll, discovered in 1952 by a team of Bedouin led by Henri de Contenson of the ecole Biblique in East Jerusalem. Appearing to be a list of buried treasure engraved on copper pieces, the Copper Scroll has long been considered to be the work of a devout, secretive Jewish sect, the Essenes, who lived by the Dead Sea around the time of Jesus. Metallurgist Robert Feather demonstrates, however, that the weights and numbering systems used in the Copper Scroll are actually Egyptian in origin. He further shows how Greek characters inserted into the text of the Copper Scroll make clear references to the Egyptian pharaoh Akhenaten. Feather's findings support theories that the original priests of Akhenaten continued to pass on his religious teachings of monotheism and that those teachings directly impacted the theological evolution of ancient Judaism. Decoded, the Copper Scroll also indicates the existence of a completely independent sect of pious Hebrew priests that preserved the original practices of Ahkenaten-influenced Judaism. This fascinatingstudy takes the reader on a journey from ancient Mesopotamia, through Canaan, into Egypt, and back to the shores of the Dead Sea in order to explore the wide-reaching implications of the Copper Scroll. The author suggests the locations of most of the treasures listed on the scroll; explores further links between the Essenes of Qumran and other Jewish sects, such as the Ethiopian Jews; and provides a fresh understanding of the origins of monotheism--the basis of the three great religions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Robert Feather is a metallurgist, journalist, and scholar of world religions. He is the founding editor of The Metallurgist and editor of Weighing and Measuring. He lives in London.
Since their discovery in 1947, the Dead Sea Scrolls have become an icon in popular culture that transcends their status as ancient Jewish manuscripts. Everyone has heard of the Scrolls, but amidst the conspiracies, the politics, and the sensational claims, it can be difficult to separate the myths from the reality. In this Very Short introductions, Timothy Lim discusses the cultural significance of the finds, and the religious, political and legal controversies during the seventy years of study since the discovery. He also looks at the contribution the Scrolls have made to our understanding of the Old Testament or Hebrew Bible, and the origins of early Christianity. Exploring the most recent scholarly discussions on the archaeology of Khirbet Qumran, and the study of the biblical texts, the canon, and the history of the Second Temple Period, he considers what the scrolls reveal about sectarianism in early Judaism. Was the archaeological site of Qumran a centre of monastic life, a fortress, a villa, or a pottery factory? Why were some of their biblical texts so different from the ones that we read today? Did they have 'a Bible'? Who were the Essenes and why did they think that humanity is to be divided between 'the sons of light' and those in darkness? And, finally, do the Scrolls reflect the teachings of the earliest followers of Jesus? ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.
Remember, retell, recreate, and relive the Exodus
This revised and expanded edition of the classic spiritual sourcebook offers updated information, more ideas, and new resources for every aspect of the Festival of Freedom.
An inspiring and practical how-to guide, Passoverclearly explains all the vital information that you need to fully honor and to fully enjoy this sacred celebration, including: History and meaning How to prepare, from shopping to "kashering" to selecting a "Haggadah" Rituals, prayers, and blessings (step by step) Songs and prayers in English and Hebrew (with clear transliterations) Innovative and imaginative new traditions to enliven your celebration Firsthand explanations and ideas from a variety of perspectives New information and ideas about how to involve everyone from toddlers to teens to grandparents in a meaningful Seder experience
Enriched by real-life voices sharing practical, useful suggestions and advice, this creative resource helps us to reacquaint ourselves with time-tested traditions and discover old and new ways to celebrate the birth and continuous renewal of the Jewish people.
Wander through the wilderness with the children of Israel. Stand up and be counted in the census of God's army or accept a special priestly task. Learn to trust God rather than spies who fear giants. This commentary: follows the weekly Torah (Pentateuch) readings with parallel passages from the Prophets and New Covenant, includes a beginner's look at the Hebrew language in a very easy-to-understand manner, emphasizes traditional Jewish and Messianic interpretation that focuses on personal application, and helps you relate the ancient Scriptures to your daily walk! 211 pages.
Did Yeshua observe the Law? Did Paul teach his congregations to abandon the Torah? Was the devout Jew, Peter, persuaded that the Commandments were cancelled? The answers you'll find in this book may surprise you! Even though many Jews believe that Paul taught against the Law, this book disproves that notion. Most Christians are disconnected from the Torah; reading this book will reconnect them. Dr. Friedman makes an excellent case for his premise that all the first followers of Messiah were not only Torah-observant, but also desired to spread their love for God's entire Word to the Gentiles to whom they preached. Part 1 Yeshua and the Torah Part 2 Yeshua's Talmidim and the Torah Part 3 Reactions to the Torah Observance of Yeshua and His Followers Part 4 Torah Observance: Legalism or Love? David Friedman, former academic dean of King of Kings College in Jerusalem, holds a Ph.D. in Judaic studies and an M.A. in Arabic.
From the Reform secession of the 1840s and the founding of Liberal Judaism six decades later, to the 'Jacobs Affair' and the rise of Conservative (Masorti) theology towards the end of the twentieth century, the British Chief Rabbinate has faced challenges and controversy on an ever-deepening scale. Using contemporary accounts, broadsides and hitherto unpublished archival material, Faith Against Reason is an incisive and indispensable contribution to an understanding of the fissures and fragmentation besetting Anglo-Jewry in modern times. At its core are the mavericks, ministers, grandees and God-fearers who grappled with the currents and complexities of the hour - and with each other - in their pursuit of communal power and pulpit supremacy. The chroniclers of Anglo-Jewry have not always been kind to Britain's Chief Rabbis. In truth, the verdicts have been mixed, and sometimes muted, but, with communal censure and strife continuing unabated, they have become increasingly forthright as the centuries have turned. In Faith Against Reason, some of these verdicts are subjected to scrutiny; others emerge and, with them, a clearer picture of the Chief Rabbinical stance on religious pluralism.
Spiritual and ethical lessons for the workaday world: how to do well and do good.
How can I find greater satisfaction in my work?
How can I lead my employees through difficult times?
If you get up each morning to go to work, this guide contains the reminder you need to succeed: you can do well and, at the very same time, you can do good.
Rabbi Wayne Dosick gives us tools to solve both the major moral dilemmas and the day-to-day questions of life at work. He offers ten new commandments that can transform our work and work environment into places for accomplishment and satisfaction, honesty and integrity, decency and dignity and success.
Through stories, real-life business situations, and artfully chosen spiritual texts, "The Business Bible" reminds us that principles don t have to be sacrificed for profits, that value means more than net worth, and that spiritual ethics can lead to business excellence.
You spend one-third of your life sleeping. Is spirituality a
part of that time?
This inspiring, informative guide shows us how we can use the often overlooked time at the end of each day to enhance our spiritual, physical and psychological well-being.
Each chapter takes a new look at traditional Jewish prayers and what they have to teach us about the spiritual aspects of preparing for the end of the day, and about sleep itself. Drawing on Kabbalistic teachings, prayer, the Bible and midrash, the authors enrich our understanding of traditional bedtime preparations, and show how, by including them in our bedtime rituals, we can gain insight into our lives and access the spiritual enrichment the world of dreams has to offer.
Clear illustrations and diagrams, step-by-step meditations, visualization techniques and exercise suggestions for fully integrating body, mind and spirit show us the way to: "Hashkivenu" Creating a safe space for sleep "Hareni Mochel" Clearing our hearts through forgiveness "Shema" Connecting to God in Love "Bircat Cohanim" Experiencing the reality of blessing "Hamapil" Thanking God for sleep and the illumination that comes in sleeps
This perfect nighttime companion draws on the power of Jewish tradition to help us enhance our spiritual awareness in both our waking and sleeping hours.
The "Mishnah," understood to be the written form of the Jewish Oral Law, was preserved by the rabbis following the destruction of the Jerusalem Temple in 70 CE, and was completed in approximately 200 CE. More than four centuries of Jewish religious thought and activity are found within this text, and it is as important to the development of Judaism as the New Testament is to the development of Christianity. Students of the New Testament will find it especially interesting because its contents reflect the Jewish religious tradition during the time of Jesus and the early Christian Church. The "Mishnah" historical value in understanding the first two centuries of the common era is comparable in its importance to the Dead Sea Scrolls, as well as the Apocrypha, Pseudepigrapha, and secular works of that time such as the writings of Josephus. This edition by Danby is the classic English translation of the "Mishnah" (which was originally written in Middle or "Mishnaic" Hebrew), and has been the standard for almost 80 years for scholars and other interested readers. Until the printing of this volume in the 1930s, the "Mishnah" was not available to study as a whole for the English speaker. Now it is available for the first time in a paperback edition.
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