Judaism Religious Life

Judaism Religious Life

In the evening and in the morning a Jew recites the scheme (“Hear Israel”) and prays the Amida, which is prayed a third time in the afternoon. In many cases, he wraps himself in the tallit (prayer shawl / prayer shawl) and on weekdays he puts the tefillin on it (Phylacteries) on. He can perform the prayers alone – for example at home – or in a synagogue community. Ten mature prayers (Hebrew minyan) constitute (as a minimum number) the public worship service, during which on certain days – especially on the Sabbath – the Torah is read after the morning and afternoon prayer. The sabbatical thoral reading takes place continuously in the annual cycle and is supplemented by a reading of the prophets. A subsequent sermon in the local language is common today. On Sabbaths and feast days, another prayer (in Hebrew Musaf) follows in the morning. Traditionally there is gender segregation in synagogues; In some conservative and usually in liberal or reform synagogues, the separate seating arrangements and sometimes all restrictions on the participation of women in worship have been lifted. Liturgical tasks can in principle be carried out by any adult Jew. Depending on the possibility, a congregation (in Hebrew Kehilla) has specialists for individual tasks or a group of tasks: prayer leaders (Chasan), Torah reader, synagogue servant (shammash), circumciser (mohel), butcher (shochet), assessor for kashrut (the “kosher” [ that satisfies the ritual regulations]), teacher, rabbi. At the time of the Jerusalem temple the priests (descendants of Aaron [ Cohen ]) and the other Levites (Levi) outside the temple were assigned certain (few) honorary functions.

In addition to the synagogue and the cemetery, a Jewish community usually maintains a bath for ritual cleansing (mikveh) and sometimes a teaching house (bet midrash; yeshiva). Of the various social institutions v. a. the poor fund (Zedaka), sick care (Bikkur Cholim [actually “sick visit”]) and the funeral society (Chewra Kaddischa) to be mentioned.

A Jewish boy receives circumcision eight days after his birth as a sign of acceptance into God’s covenant with the people of Israel. His father is obliged to provide for his schooling; In the diaspora, parents’ initiatives sometimes set up Jewish schools. In circles that are particularly strictly traditional, lessons begin at the age of three (cheder). After he is thirteen, a boy becomes a bar mitzvah (“son of the commandment”) and is considered an adult in the synagogue. With regard to its form and the customs associated with it – as in other religions – marriage is v. a. a festive legal act.

According to gradchem.com, a number of regulations concern the body, its clothing and diet ( kosher). Especially in contact with the limits of life and accordingly in the sexual area, purity regulations must be observed. The Bible forbids mixed fabrics for clothing (Leviticus 19:19; Deuteronomy 22:11) and prescribes tassels made of four threads (Zizit; Tallit) on square cloths. When praying, in worship rooms and during religious (holy) activities, men wear a head covering (kippah); some wear them all the time. Married women, v. a. of the Orthodox faith, hide their own hair under wigs or headscarves in public. The separation of milk and meat applies to kitchen equipment, crockery, cutlery and meals. In between lies the neutral category (Hebrew parwe [e.g. bread, vegetable fat, eggs, fruit, vegetables]). Meat food is only obtained from certain animals (e.g. no pigs) and through a traditional slaughter method ( shafts). The animal is then examined for internal defects before its meat is released for food. Post-treatment includes repeated salting and washing of the meat. At Passover, the ban on leavened foods applies to cereal products (chametz). In the State of Israel, these rules are binding for public institutions. Within Reform Judaism, the purity and dietary laws are not obeyed as a matter of course.

After the weekly Sabbath, the annual festivals are high points in the Jewish calendar. The three pilgrimage feasts remind (present) v. a. the exodus from Egypt and the subsequent stay on Sinai. They are also harvest festivals: Passover commemorates the exodus from Egypt (end of the rainy season, start of the wheat harvest), the covenant with the reception of the Torah Shavuot (start of the barley harvest), living in the desert under the cloud roof and the construction of the tabernacle, the feast of Tabernacles (completion of the wine and fruit harvest, announcing the rainy season). The “High Holidays” with the ten days of penance of Rosh Hashanah (as New Year’s Creation Reminder and Judgment) up to the “Day of Atonement” (Yom Kippur) are dedicated to accountability, conversion (repentance) and forgiveness. The memory of the second descent of Moses with the renewed covenant tables (Exodus 34) also links the Day of Atonement with Sinai. From the time of the second temple, Hanukkah commemorates the rededication of the temple by the Maccabees and the festival of Purim to the rescue of the Persian Jews (according to the description in Esther 9, 20–32). Orientation towards history, towards God’s saving action in history, forms the basis of Jewish theology and religiosity. Conversely, the religious-cultural peculiarity of Judaism has developed in the course of history and in interaction with the respective social and political circumstances, so that the political history of the Jews in Israel / Palestine and in exile or in the diaspora as well as their religious development are closely linked.

Judaism Religious Life