Download 20th Century Jewish Religious Thought by Arthur A. Cohen, Paul Mendes-Flohr PDF

By Arthur A. Cohen, Paul Mendes-Flohr

JPS is proud to reissue Cohen and Mendes-Flohr’s vintage paintings, possibly crucial, entire anthology to be had on twentieth century Jewish proposal. This striking quantity offers a hundred and forty concise but authoritative essays through well known Jewish figures Eugene Borowitz, Emil Fackenheim, Blu Greenberg, Susannah Heschel, Jacob Neusner, Gershom Scholem, Adin Steinsaltz, and so on. They outline and replicate upon such vital principles as charity, selected humans, demise, kinfolk, love, delusion, anguish, Torah, culture and extra. With entries from Aesthetics to Zionism, this ebook offers extraordinary insights into either the Jewish event and the Judeo-Christian culture.

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Example text

While j represents direct contact between God and the patriarchs, E tends to soften and refine this contact by introducing a dream or an angel as an intermediary (see, for example, Gen. , 28:12, 21:11-13), even though this difference is not to be viewed as absolute and decisive. The difficulties encountered in separating the sources stem from the fact that the redactor who combined them attempted to smooth out rough spots and create uniformity, creating the impression that we are dealing not with two independent sources but with only one (j), which was simply supplemented by a later source (E).

It should be noted that this extra element in the Christian anti-Semitic myth is derived from the mystery cults, which were themselves without any anti-Semitic orientation but provided the idea of salvation through the death and resurrection of a divine-human figure, and also even provided the idea of a dark, evil figure who brings about this necessary death (for example, Set, in Egyptian mythology~ Mot, in Phoenician mythology~ and Loki, in Scandinavian mythology). The Pauline-Christian anti-Semitic myth thus takes its tone from Gnosticism, but sharpens the drama of the evil Jewish role by adding the sacrificial motifs of the mystery cults.

The fall of Persia was not the end of paganism; a new pagan kingdom (Greece) arose and kept Israel in bondage. Antiochus Epiphanes' aggression against the Judaic religion and Jerusalem called for an interpretation. The pious Jews of this dark period saw in it the End of Days and expected the coming of the Messiah. But neither the Hasmonaean kingdom nor the rebellion against the mighty Roman rule pointed in the direction of messianic fulfillment. E. The visionary is deeply convinced of divine providence, of God's hand as guiding history in all its details; he sees four world empires rising and succeeding each other yet forming a united "world history"; the end is clearly predetermined and the present generation is to be the last.

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