Learning Resources

Judaism

13.11.15

In this section of our website you will find all manner of information about the religion of Judaism and how it is practised today, as well as some pages about its past and development. Use the links below to take you to specific pages within this section of our website. Basic Judaism   Judaism Explained […]

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Basic Judaism

16.11.15

This section of our website has pages providing broad and basic information about Judaism. To view a page, please click on one of the links below. To find more specific information on a particular aspect of Judaism, please see our Judaism section and select an appropriate link there. Overview Different Streams of Judaism Judaism and […]

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Overview of Judaism

16.11.15

Judaism is the mother-faith from which Christianity and Islam developed. All three date back to Abraham, who discovered the one, true, invisible God. At Mount Sinai, several centuries later, Moses and the Israelites received the Torah (teaching), which revealed the way God wished to be served. Belief in one God, as taught by Moses, is […]

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Judaism and Israel

16.11.15

INTRODUCTION Jews have lived in the land of Israel for nearly 4000 years, going back to the period of the Biblical patriarchs (c.1900 BCE). The story of the Jewish people, Israel, its capital, Jerusalem, and the Jewish Temple there, has been one of exile, destruction and rebirth. In its 3000 years of history, Jerusalem has […]

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Mitzvot

16.11.15

The English translation of the word mitzvot is ‘commandments’. Judaism teaches that God revealed His will in the Torah in the form of mitzvot which have since been amplified by rabbis around the world. Mitzvotcontrol many aspects of human life, representing a network of obligations and prohibitions which govern  a Jew’s thoughts and actions. Mitzvot […]

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‘Jewish’ Items & Objects

16.11.15

This sub-section of our website contains pages about a number of ‘Jewish’ items or experiences. Challah Bagels Klezmer Music Chassidic Tales Chassidic Song

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Challah

16.11.15

Challah is the traditional plaited bread especially baked for Friday night and Saturday daytime (Shabbat) and other holidays. Although it is customary to home bake challah to emphasise the feeling of unity, warmth and love that the Sabbath and other holidays represent., these days most people prefer the convenience of store-bought challah. ‘Challah’ means ‘dough’, […]

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Bagels

16.11.15

Little more than dough boiled and baked into a circle with a hole in the middle, the humble bagel has become arguably the greatest Jewish contribution to world cuisine. The perfect bagel should be crusty on the outside and chewy on the inside. To make it, throw a ring of risen dough into boiling water […]

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Klezmer Music

16.11.15

Once denigrated as fit only for Jewish celebrations, klezmer has undergone a remarkable revival. It has metamorphosed beyond its East European roots, and now encompasses jazz, rock, reggae, punk and jazz hybrids. But what is klezmer, and what actually makes it Jewish? Klezmer literally means music or musician, and derives from the Hebrew kli zemer, […]

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Chassidic Tales

16.11.15

Chassidic Judaism has produced much weighty commentary and scholarship, yet simple folk tales have always been intrinsic to the movement. The Chassidic masters used stories to guide and inform their people and to open their hearts to God. Chassidic tales convey the doctrine of the universal eminence of God, and the message that everything contains […]

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Chassidic Song

16.11.15

“Serve the Lord with joy, and come before Him with singing,” wrote the psalmist. Music played a pivotal role in ancient Jewish observance. The advent of Chassidism in the 18th century reintroduced simcha (happiness) into Judaism, and with it came new melodies. For centuries, rabbis composed nigunim, personal, improvised spiritual tunes, later recalled by students. […]

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Synagogues

16.11.15

The Hebrew word for synagogue is not beth ha-tefilah, ‘house of prayer’, as might be expected. Rather, it is beth ha-knesset, ‘house of assembly’, proof that wherever Jews live, the synagogue lies at the very centre of communal life. The synagogue grew in importance after the Temple in Jerusalem was destroyed in 70 C.E. While […]

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