Judaism: Who They Are And What They Believe. Judaism Has

1505 WordsApr 17, 20177 Pages
Judaism: Who they are and What they Believe Judaism has approximately 14 million adherents across all seven continents of the world (Rich, “Jewish Population”). Of the world’s 7 billion people, Judaism only makes up about 0.2% of the world’s population. However, for its small size it receives a disproportionately large amount of publicity. This could be due to the unfortunate fact that Jews throughout history tend to face a large amount of discrimination and persecution or because of their relation to the two largest religions in the world, Christianity and Islam. In my pursuit to understand Judaism, I learned about this small, but widely recognized, religion’s deep-rooted history, sacred traditions, and intentional worship-style. I…show more content…
Israel’s establishment brought the religious migration of millions of Jews, and it is still a site of pilgrimage for many Jews. A prominent prayer within Judaism is the return to their homeland, Israel (Rich, “Land of Israel”). Judaism began thousands of years ago when the father of Judaism, Abraham, entered into covenant with God. The Jews were God’s chosen people, and the Jews acknowledged God as the one and only God. It is a purely monotheistic religion that is centralized around the Torah (“Beliefs”). The Torah is the first five books of the Christian Bible. It recounts God’s relationship with his chosen people and the laws that his people are to follow. The whole of the sacred religious teachings of Judaism is referred to as the Tanakh. The Tanakh consists of all of the Old Testament of the Bible (Rich, “Torah”). The Torah is read weekly at Shabbat services, and the congregation will read the entirety of the Torah every year (Rich, “Torah Readings”). There are several branches within the religion of Judaism. The four main branches today are Orthodox, Reform, Conservative, and Reconstructionist. Orthodox Judaism is the oldest branch. They believe that the entirety of the Torah (Tanakh) was given to Moses by God at Mount Sinai. The Torah was entirely written by God, and it has remained unchanged throughout the centuries (Rich, “Movements”). In Orthodox synagogues, men and women sit separately as to prevent distraction from God (Rich, “Synagogues,
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