Archive for 'Jewish History'

The Septuagint’s Reading of the Shema

Q. This is my first post to this message board. My question is simple. When the sacred authors wrote the words in the Septuagint “Hear, O Israel” were they normally speaking to the local community of Israel or the scattered children of Israel?

Please explain the difference between Tanya and Zohar?

Q. Please explain the difference between Tanya and Zohar?

A. The Zohar (The Book of Splendor) is the central book in the literature of Jewish mysticism (Kabbalah). It is attributed to Shimon bar Yoh’ai, a second century Tanna, but modern scholarship has concluded beyond any shade of doubt, that the Zohar was compiled in Spain during thirteenth-century.

Citations from the Zohar first appeared in Kabbalistic writings after 1280, and analysis of the book’s terminology and prose style shows that its real author ...

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Conversation with Spinoza: Spinoza’s Interpretation of the Peshat.

No Jewish philosophy of biblical interpretation would be complete without mentioning the thoughts of Baruch Spinoza (1632–77), who deservedly is the one of the founding fathers of modern historical criticism. He was the first modern Judaic thinker to encourage the reader to move away from the traditional rabbinic and ecclesiastical authorities who defined the meaning of the text for their generations. He encouraged each person to make a scientific examination of the biblical ...

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