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Read e-book online Everyman's Talmud: The Major Teachings of the Rabbinic Sages PDF

By Abraham Cohen

"To a few readers of this ebook, the Talmud represents little greater than a recognized Jewish publication. yet humans need to know a couple of booklet that, they're informed, defines Judaism. Everyman's Talmud is the fitting starting point not just to benefit approximately Judaism quite often yet to satisfy the substance of the Talmud specifically . . . In time to come back, Cohen's publication will locate its companion-though i don't count on it is going to ever require a successor for what it accomplishes with beauty and intelligence: a scientific theology of the Talmud's Judaism."
—From the Foreword via Jacob Neusner

Long considered as the vintage advent to the lessons of the Talmud, this accomplished and masterly distillation summarizes the knowledge of the rabbinic sages at the dominant issues of Judaism: the doctrine of God; God and the universe; the soul and its future; prophesy and revelation; actual existence; ethical lifestyles and social residing; legislation, ethics, and jurisprudence; legends and people traditions; the Messiah and the realm to come back.

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Extra resources for Everyman's Talmud: The Major Teachings of the Rabbinic Sages

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The following argument ensued. " Nimrod said: "Then worship the + I I . "' 1 (Gen. R. xxxv111. 13). line of reasoning leads to the hypothesis of an ultimate Creator. The other legend tells that Abraham had to be hidden away soon after his birth becausc astrologers had warned King Nimrod that a child was about to bc born who would overthrow his kingdom, and advised that he be killed while still a babe. The child lived with a nurse in a cavc for three years. Thc story continucs: 'When he left the cave, his heart kept reflecting upon the crcation of the Universe, and he detern~incdt o worship all the luminaries until he discovered which of them was God.

It was the province of the Halackah to build, upon the foundation of BiblicaI iaw, a legal supeistructure capable of resisting the ravages of time, and. unmindful of contemuoraneous distress and hardshio. *. to trace out: for future generatio&, the extreme logical consequences of the Law in its application. To the Haggadah belonged the high, ethical mission of consoling, edifying, exhorting, and teaching a nation suffering the D ~ E Sand , threatened with the spiritual stagnation, of exile; df p&claiming that the glories of the past ~xefimreda future of equal brilliancy, and that the very wretched;essYof the present was part of the- divine plan outlhed in the Bible.

Xu. 4). Other solutions that were suggested find illustration in such ' stories as these. 'A Samaritan asked R. ' (Jer. xxiii. zq)? " He saw it magnified. He next asked him to bring small mirrors and look into them, and. he saw his reflection diminished in size. R. "' (Gen. R. Iv. 4). ). " he was asked, and he replied, 'Because the sun is in the house of an infidel " "But the sun shines all over the world 1" evclaimed the heretic, and the Rabbi retorted "If the sun, whit 11 is only one out of a mill~onmyrlads of God's servants, can be in every part of the world, how much more so can the Shechrnalz radiate throughout the entire Universel"' (Sanh 3ga) A reason why such emphasis was l a ~ dupon the ~ d e aof D ~ v ~ n c omnipresence was to impress the human bemg w ~ t hthe conscious ness t h l t he a a s always under the supervision of God 'Reflect upon three things,' taught R Judah, the redactor of the M~shnah, 'and you ~ 1 1 1never fall into the power of sm Know what IS abovc vou--a seemg eye, and a hearmg ear, and all your detds ale iecorded' (Aboth 11 I ) The doctrine 1s lmpress~relyenunciated m the exhortat~onwhlch R Jorhannn b Zakkal addressed to h s disciples on his death bed He s a ~ dto them 'May ~t be His will that the few of Heatcn be upon you as great as the fear of flesh and blood ' rhey eudairnc.

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Everyman's Talmud: The Major Teachings of the Rabbinic Sages by Abraham Cohen


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