October 12, 2012

Judaism is a practical religion for individual people. It has no requirements or conditions that make normal life impossible or cannot be fulfilled in reality.

Minute regulation developed only in Levitical and especially in late rabbinic interpretation; the law of the Torah is not oppressive.
Judaism is not a religion in traditional sense. Jews need not believe in supernatural events like eternal nirvana or someone’s resurrection. Even ostensible miracles in Judaic epos may be explained according to the laws of nature. Judaism is a system of ethics which can be understood, evaluated, and consciously accepted. Atheists are uncomfortable with the Creation—strikingly similar to the Big Bang—but the issue is practically unimportant. Some critical people doubt that God dictated Moses the commandments, but what changes if Moses already knew the laws and wrote them down for the judges to apply, as Jethro told him? In the end, Judaism is the law; all events in Tanakh only demonstrate validity of the law. Any other view makes Judaism a pagan religion whose tribal deity favors one ethnic group above others. Jews are chosen to observe the law, and remain chosen insofar as they are expected to observe it. Unlike sectarian radicalism, Judaism is not maximalist. The world is not divided between good and evil. According to Talmudic tradition, it is enough for men to be one-thousandth good and enter the heavenly realm. The commandments do not require absolute obedience in the sense that transgression does not preclude righteousness. The more a man keeps, the better, the easier is the Way. Transgression is cause for repentance, aimed at not repeating the mistake.

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