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  #1  
Old Jan 9, '17, 1:53 pm
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mVitus mVitus is offline
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Default Two Jewish Questions

1: Christianity and Islam are both missionary religions with an emphasis to spread the word. Judaism by contrast is not even though it's the original Abrahamic religion. I've always wondered about that and I'm curious as to explanations.

2: Do Jews pray to saints? Would a Jewish person ask Elijah to pray for them for example?
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  #2  
Old Jan 9, '17, 5:19 pm
psalm90 psalm90 is offline
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Default Re: Two Jewish Questions

(1) I seem to have read that Judaism expects all people to be converted to Judaism in the end time, but they believe it is up to God to accomplish this.

(2) another guess, it would be too blasphemous to pray to anyone but G-d. I don't know the Psalms intimately enough to tell if there are prayers directed anywhere but to G-d. G-d is revealed as both transcendent (high above the heavens) and imminent (close enough to hear the prayer spoken most softly)

...but this is just from reading, not from experience
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  #3  
Old Jan 10, '17, 2:47 pm
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ltwin ltwin is offline
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Default Re: Two Jewish Questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by mVitus View Post
1: Christianity and Islam are both missionary religions with an emphasis to spread the word. Judaism by contrast is not even though it's the original Abrahamic religion. I've always wondered about that and I'm curious as to explanations.
It never possessed a strong missionary impulse because Judaism was always tied to Jewish ethnicity. To become a Jew, you essentially had to adopt a new ethnicity and nationality.

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2: Do Jews pray to saints? Would a Jewish person ask Elijah to pray for them for example?
As I understand it, the closest thing in Judaism to a saint in the Catholic sense are the hasidim. According to this Haaretz article, Jews don't pray to saints, but they may pray at their graves.
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  #4  
Old Jan 10, '17, 3:09 pm
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mVitus mVitus is offline
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Default Re: Two Jewish Questions

Thanks, Itwin, for the article. However when I clicked on the link, I didn't see a way to get beyond sentence two of the article so do you have another way of sharing it?
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  #5  
Old Jan 10, '17, 3:41 pm
ComplineSanFran ComplineSanFran is offline
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Default Re: Two Jewish Questions

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It never possessed a strong missionary impulse because Judaism was always tied to Jewish ethnicity. To become a Jew, you essentially had to adopt a new ethnicity and nationality.
.
Or perhaps another way of saying it is that the Jews are a covenanted people - God's Chosen. So, no, entering into that Covenant is rarely by adoption but rather by birth.
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  #6  
Old Jan 11, '17, 9:41 pm
pablope pablope is offline
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Default Re: Two Jewish Questions

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Originally Posted by mVitus View Post
1: s.

2: Do Jews pray to saints? Would a Jewish person ask Elijah to pray for them for example?
Yes,,,the communion of saints has direct jewish roots:

http://www.calledtocommunion.com/201...ption-of-mary/
The first real blow to this interpretation came when I read Peter Brown’s book, The Cult of Saints: Its Rise and Function in Latin Christianity.
Brown challenged my view that the place of saints and relics in the church was a mere holdover from paganism, and that the practice was somehow peripheral to true Christianity. Instead, Brown painted a picture of ancient Christianity and paganism in which relics were indispensable to the former, and repulsive to the latter. Far from a holdover from paganism, the place of relics in the Church appeared as something intensely Jewish, Hebraic, and Old Testament. Pagans, like Julian-the-Apostate, found the practice revolting and legislated against it. (Paganism, with its notions of ritual purity, had strictly delimited the realm of divine worship and neatly separated it from the realm of corpses and the dead.)




http://www.chabad.org/library/articl...m/mobile/false


We petition them to pray on our behalf--and they do and often their prayers are more effective than our own. After all, we often don't fathom the seriousness of these problems from our limited perspective as much as they might from their much more lofty view.


As you can see the from the excerpt, this is a very catholic belief and teaching.

Even our veneration of Mary has jewish roots:


http://ldsguy2catholic.wordpress.com/

Dr. Marshall was visiting someone as a priest), who told him that Jews believe that “if someone is suffering and you invoke the name of his or her mother in prayer, God will be more merciful in granting your prayer for that person“. ,,,,,,. Catholic devotion to Mary is not merely based on sound Christological arguments. Veneration for the Blessed Mother is not just only in the writings of the early Church. Reaching back even further, the Church reveres and invokes the Blessed Mother because it inherited the Jewish custom of showing profound reverence for the spiritual role of the mother in a family. The rabbi’s answer was a surprising confirmation that Catholic customs are rooted in a Jewish understanding of reality.
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  #7  
Old Jan 12, '17, 12:32 am
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Kaninchen Kaninchen is offline
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Default Re: Two Jewish Questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by mVitus View Post
1: Christianity and Islam are both missionary religions with an emphasis to spread the word. Judaism by contrast is not even though it's the original Abrahamic religion. I've always wondered about that and I'm curious as to explanations.
It's important to remember that we don't consider people disadvantaged by not being Jews (it's certainly not what the concept of 'chosen people' is about), a Christian or Muslim has as much hope for the 'World to Come' as we have and nobody is doomed for not wanting to be a Jew. We don't share Christian concepts of 'original sin' and 'salvation'.

Since we don't think people are doomed for not being Jewish, there's no equivalent to the Christian or Muslim belief in a need for others to 'accept Christ' or 'accept Islam.'

Quote:
2: Do Jews pray to saints? Would a Jewish person ask Elijah to pray for them for example?
No.
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  #8  
Old Jan 12, '17, 3:31 pm
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ltwin ltwin is offline
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Default Re: Two Jewish Questions

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Originally Posted by mVitus View Post
Thanks, Itwin, for the article. However when I clicked on the link, I didn't see a way to get beyond sentence two of the article so do you have another way of sharing it?
Sorry, I don't. In fact, I just tried to read the article again, and it wouldn't let me either.
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  #9  
Old Jan 12, '17, 3:44 pm
meltzerboy meltzerboy is offline
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Default Re: Two Jewish Questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by mVitus View Post
1: Christianity and Islam are both missionary religions with an emphasis to spread the word. Judaism by contrast is not even though it's the original Abrahamic religion. I've always wondered about that and I'm curious as to explanations.

2: Do Jews pray to saints? Would a Jewish person ask Elijah to pray for them for example?
Jews pray only to G-d, not to saints, although my Orthodox Jewish grandmother used to pray for guidance to her parents. This is NOT officially permitted, however.

With regard to being a missionary religion, Judaism is not this kind of religion although it welcomes converts. The reason is it is believed one must come to Judaism with an open heart and, even then, one must be certain of being willing and able to take on the challenges of converting to Judaism; not only the process of conversion itself but the obligations and responsibilities that entail being Jewish.
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  #10  
Old Jan 12, '17, 3:46 pm
meltzerboy meltzerboy is offline
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Default Re: Two Jewish Questions

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Originally Posted by psalm90 View Post
(1) I seem to have read that Judaism expects all people to be converted to Judaism in the end time, but they believe it is up to God to accomplish this.

(2) another guess, it would be too blasphemous to pray to anyone but G-d. I don't know the Psalms intimately enough to tell if there are prayers directed anywhere but to G-d. G-d is revealed as both transcendent (high above the heavens) and imminent (close enough to hear the prayer spoken most softly)

...but this is just from reading, not from experience
No conversion to Judaism is needed even in the end time.
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  #11  
Old Jan 16, '17, 6:46 pm
rinnie rinnie is offline
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Default Re: Two Jewish Questions

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Originally Posted by meltzerboy View Post
Jews pray only to G-d, not to saints, although my Orthodox Jewish grandmother used to pray for guidance to her parents. This is NOT officially permitted, however.

With regard to being a missionary religion, Judaism is not this kind of religion although it welcomes converts. The reason is it is believed one must come to Judaism with an open heart and, even then, one must be certain of being willing and able to take on the challenges of converting to Judaism; not only the process of conversion itself but the obligations and responsibilities that entail being Jewish.
we Catholic. We ask the Saints to pray for us. We believe that God accepts the prayers of those who are not in the state of mortal sin. Not that God does not accept our prayers, but we are taught in the book of Job God does not accept everyones.
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  #12  
Old Jan 17, '17, 6:09 am
SyroMalankara SyroMalankara is offline
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Default Re: Two Jewish Questions

Its important to remember that what Judaism entails today may not be a direct reflection of times past. As all religions, Judaism developed, splintered, evolved in various times and places. Its not uniform everywhere, and even less so in past centuries before the formation of Israel as a nation. The mainstream Judaism of today is heavily influenced by the Rabbinic schools, with no Temple worship, no Sadduccees, very limited to no Samaritans (none outside small pockets in Israel/Palestine), no Essenes, no monarchy, no Sanhedrin, and influenced by evangelical Christianity (Catholicism and Orthodoxy in places like Italy, Russia, Ethiopia, etc) and Islam to some extent.
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  #13  
Old Jan 18, '17, 12:34 am
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JPUSC JPUSC is offline
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Default Re: Two Jewish Questions

Jim, do you have brothers and sisters? If you do, I'm sure you'll agree that each of you is different. One of you may be musical, another a sports freak, and yet another more academically inclined. Each of you is an individual, and that should be encouraged. It would be wrong of parents to treat all their kids the same. If they would have forced you all to play violin, or soccer, or to read Shakespeare it would have been counter-productive. Good parents know that each child has to be allowed to develop in their own unique way.

The nations of the world are all G‑d's children. He doesn't treat them all the same because they aren't all the same. He wants each nation to develop in its own way. So each nation has a different path to reach their full potential. To the Jewish nation he gave the Torah as our way of expressing our souls. But Judaism is not for everyone. We don't believe that a non-Jew needs to become Jewish to find G‑d. Just like a musically-talented child shouldn't be forced to play soccer. Anyone is welcome to convert, but that is up to them.

G‑d created different nations because each has a unique contribution to offer the world. Maybe your "mission" should be to ensure that your nation fulfils that purpose.

from Chabad
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  #14  
Old Jan 18, '17, 12:47 am
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Default Re: Two Jewish Questions

Question:

I came across your site and wow--I really want to become Jewish. My mother was a fairly devout Italian Catholic and my father an Anglican skeptic who never went to church. I was always so confused. But now your site has really turned me on to Judaism, a real coming home for me. What's my next step?

Response:

Your next step is to become a better person. Develop greater faith in your soul, in your destiny, and in your Maker. Do more good, reach out to more people. Learn more wisdom, apply whatever you learn, and make life worth living.

But you don't need to become Jewish to do any of that. Plenty of wonderful people doing beautiful things in the world are not Jewish, and G‑d is nonetheless pleased with them. And if you're worried about going to heaven, Jewish belief is that all good people have a share in the World to Come, as long as they connect their lives to the oneness of G‑d and keep the Seven Laws of Noah.

You see, there's Judaism and there's Jewishness, and the two are not one and the same. Judaism is wisdom for every person on the planet and beyond. We call it the Torah, meaning "the teaching," and it's a divine message to all human beings containing the principles that much of humanity has already accepted as absolute truths. The idea that human life is beyond value is a teaching originating from Torah, as is the related concept that all human beings are created equal. So too, the right of every individual to literacy and education was brought to the world through Torah. And world peace as a value and goal was preached exclusively by the Torah and its prophets thousands of years before it became popular in the rest of the world. And of course, the idea that there is a single, incorporeal Being who creates and sustains all of reality, and is concerned over all that occurs with each individual, thereby giving each person, creature, event and object meaning, purpose and destiny--this is a core teaching upon which everything else rests, and the central teaching of the Torah.

This teaching was not only preserved, but unfolded, explained, illuminated and applied in so many different ways by Jewish sages since it was given, over 3300 years ago. They've applied it to serious matters of medical ethics, business ethics, politics, personal enlightenment--every facet of human life. Today it is all readily available for all humanity to partake of and learn from, as a beacon of light and an inspiration to all.

That's Judaism. Then there is Jewishness. To be Jewish means to belong to an ancient tribe, either by birth or by adoption (a.k.a. conversion). It's a strange and unique tribe, because it is the only one to have survived into modernity while retaining most of the characteristics of a Bronze Age tribe. Anthropologist Jared Diamond describes in his book, "Guns, Germs and Steel," how a New Guinea tribesman, when visiting a nearby village of the same tribe, will immediately start the conversation with an investigation of, "So, who are you related to? Do you know so-and-so?" to establish tribal relations. Well, that's exactly what Jewish people do today when they meet one another all over the world. Because, whether living in Manhattan or Joburg, Tel Aviv or Vladivostok, we are still all one tribe.

And for good reason: To preserve the teachings of an ageless Torah for the world, the Jewish People themselves need to be ageless, remaining outside of time, as it were, even while traveling within it.

Tribes have rituals. So do Jews. Males of the tribe wear particular items of clothing, such as tzitzit and kippot. Women keep a certain mode of modest dress and married women cover their hair. Men also wrap leather boxes containing parchment scrolls on the heads and arms every morning, while robed in woolen sheets with more of those tzitzit tassels. In our services, we chant ancient Hebrew and read from an ancient scroll. We have holidays that commemorate our tribal memories and establish our identity as a whole. Certain foods are taboo and other food is supervised and declared fit-for-the-tribe. Nope, you can't get much more ancient-tribal than any of that. (cont'd on next post)
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Old Jan 18, '17, 12:48 am
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Default Re: Two Jewish Questions

(cont'd)

The point is, none of that ritual stuff was ever meant as a universal teaching, except perhaps in a more generalized way. Modest dress--yes, a good idea for all. Why should the human being be reduced to a body icon? A chat with your Maker every morning? How can a human being do without it? And injecting some spirituality into your food consumption--what a great way to transcend the mundane. But as to the particular rituals in their Jewish form, as meaningful as they are to us, there's simply no meaning in someone outside the tribe taking them on. (If you don't believe me, take a look in the source-text, where G‑d tells Moses, "Speak to the Children of Israel and tell them to...")

Now, what I'm saying is not very PC nowadays. We live in a world of hypermobility. Not just because we own our own cars and reserve our own tickets online to go anywhere, anytime--but because we imagine our very identities to be just as mobile as our powerbook. Pick me up and take me anywhere. Today I'm a capitalist entrepreneur, tomorrow an Inuit activist, and the next day a Californian bohemian. And we can mix and match--today, you can be Italian, Nigerian, Chinese and Bostonian all in the same meal. So who is this Freeman character to tell me which tribe I belong to and which not?

To be frank, because this Freeman character considers the hyper-identity scheme to be a scam, a mass delusion and a social illness. You can switch your clothes, your eating habits, your friends, your social demeanor, your perspective on life and maybe you can even switch to a Mac. But G‑d decides who you are, and the best you can do is discover it.

Two friends of mine joined the Peace Corps back in the sixties and were posted in Southeast Asia. Together, they visited a little-known guru in the jungle to whom they announced, "We want to become Buddhists."

"Well, what are you now?" he asked them.

"Nothing," they replied.

"Where did you come from? What were your parents?"

"They were Jews."

"So why are you coming to me?" he asked. "Go and be Jews."

Now it's my turn to return the favor and tell the Southeast Asians, the Italians, the Nigerians, the Inuits and all the rest of humanity this little piece:

I believe that what G‑d wants from each person is that s/he examine the heritage of his ancestors, discover the truths hidden there and live in accordance with them, knowing that this is what his Creator wants from her/him. The truths are there because all of human society was originally founded upon the laws given to Adam and to Noah, along with those laws that all the children of Noah accepted upon themselves. These truths are found by examining one's heritage through the light of Torah. The Jewish Tribe are the bearers of that light. But you don't need to become Jewish to partake of it. Light shines for all who have eyes.

Enjoy our site. Help spread the light.

http://www.chabad.org/library/articl...to-Judaism.htm
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