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Judaism And Western Civilization Essay

820 words - 4 pages

Judaism and Western CivilizationThe basic contribution of Judaism to Western civilization is monotheism. Understood from the standpoint of Jewish tradition, Abraham was the first monotheist. He left polytheism behind to follow the directions of the one God. The Tanakh itself gives evidence that significant numbers of ancient Israelites worshipped multiple deities.(Rabbi Shofet) Jewish leadership called upon Israel to worship the one God with whom they had a covenant relationship. But as Tanakh develops there is an increasing emphasis on the unreality of other "gods" in comparison to the one God.The God of Israel is the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, the God of Jacob. That is, he is the ...view middle of the document...

( This is less easily divided than others.), Orthodoxy(This includes various other Christian churches of ancient date, primarily the Eastern Orthodox church, but including others), Protestantism(This is not a single church or denomination, but includes a huge variety of churches that split from Roman Catholicism during the Reformation.), and Mormonism(This is best classed as a new branch of Christianity. It has a relationship with traditional Christianity that is approximately similar to the relationship Christianity has with Judaism.). Islam accepts much of Jewish and Christian tradition, but also accepts the writings of Mohammed, in the Koran, as authentic.( feel, Judaism is indeed a cultural world. To be a conscious member of that cultural world is to see life in a different way than members of other cultural worlds see it. It is a life in which everything is the creation of a single God, indeed of the only possible God. And this God is not just "an unmoved Mover", ( the God of the philosophers. He is the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, a God who has a name and who has bound himself in a relationship with the creatures.I am very proud to be a Jew, not because it is such an old rich religion, but because of the traditions which keep my family together. It is...

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