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Religion Analysis: Judaism - Research Paper Example

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Religion Analysis: Judaism

Like all other religions like Christianity and Islam, Jews have their own religious document which serves as a guideline to their faith, called the Torah. The Torah is supplemented by the halakhah, which is the Oral law of the Jewish tradition. Jews worship in worship places called synagogues and whose sessions are led by religious leaders called rabbis. It is estimated that there are at least 13 million Jews in the world, either strictly adhering to the laws of the religion or simply identifying themselves with Judaism without necessarily abiding in all the religion’s laws. Jews have a lot of beliefs and customs that set them apart from other world religions. Some of their beliefs are similar to those of Christianity; for instance, Jews believe in the existence of one, omnipotent and omnipresent God. Their beliefs are unique in that Judaism is a community rather than an individual religion and that it is imperative that the religious aspect of Judaism be seen in each believer’s daily life. It is easy to identify Jews because most wear a head gear known a yamullke, while others wear a religious adornment known as the Tefillin. Circumcision of 8-day old babies is also an important Jewish tradition. Jews celebrate festivals such as Passover, Hanukkah and Yom Kipur, which symbolize different aspects of their history. In the world, throughout history, Jews have always been viewed in a negative light. The worst atrocities the world ever witnessed was during the holocaust, where about 6 million Jews were murdered by the Nazis in Germany. Currently, the conflicts in the Middle East between Israel, a Jew dominated country and its Arabic neighbors have left the world torn on the stance to take. Above all, this conflict has been fuelled by differences in religious beliefs and practices. Flaws of the belief system Like all religions, Judaism is not without criticism from other religions or even some believer of the faith. Judaism has been viewed as a very conservative and almost exclusive religion. To become a Jew, one’s mother has to be a Jew, though in some cases children with Jewish fathers are considered Jews. Conversion to Judaism is almost impossible, unlike in other religions. This locks out many people who world prefer to convert to the religion. Jews also believe that they are the chosen people of God, thus they are holy. However, this contradicts with their belief that God created man in His image and that all are God’s children. Judaism also holds on to very old traditions, which may be seen to have no place in today’s society. For instance, mourning for the departed usually takes seven days during which very little activity on other areas in life, including work, takes place3. This could interfere with one’s source of income. Judaism also has very strong beliefs in some of the books in the Old Testament. Some of the writings in these books tend to be very demeaning to various groups in the society. For instance, the Old Testament seems to be leaning towards unfair practices on women. The Old Testament approves the marriages of small girls to old men, as well as being lenient to incest. Clearly, these practices are frowned upon in the modern society, as well as having serious repercussions on people’s well-being. Jews also believe that the world was created in 6 days and that God rested on the seventh day, which they hold as a Sabbath day. However, there is a lot of friction with scientists who believe that there was no divine intervention in ...Show more

Summary

Judaism is one of the major religions in the world. It is monotheistic, which basically means that Jews believe in the existence of one God, with whom they have entered a perpetual covenant…
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