By Martin Buber
“The query I positioned prior to you, in addition to earlier than myself, is the query of the which means of Judaism for the Jews. Why can we name ourselves Jews? i need to talk to you now not of an abstraction yet of your individual lifestyles . . . its authenticity and essence.” With those phrases, Martin Buber takes us on a trip into the guts of Judaism—its spirit, imaginative and prescient, and relevance to fashionable lifestyles.
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A arguable nationwide top vendor upon its preliminary booklet, The e-book of J is an audacious paintings of literary recovery revealing one of many nice narratives of all time and unveiling its mysterious writer. J is the identify that students ascribe to the anonymous author they suspect is liable for the textual content, written among 950 and 900 BCE, on which Genesis, Exodus, and Numbers relies. within the booklet of J, accompanying David Rosenberg's translation, Harold Bloom persuasively argues that J used to be a woman—very most likely a lady of the royal condominium at King Solomon's court—and a author of the stature of Homer, Shakespeare, and Tolstoy. Rosenberg's translations from the Hebrew convey J's tales to existence and show her towering originality and snatch of humanity. Bloom argues in numerous essays that "J" was once now not a non secular author yet a fierce ironist. He additionally deals old context, a dialogue of the idea of the way the various texts got here jointly to create the Bible, and translation notes.
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Extra resources for On Judaism
In the synagogue, each Jew is the high priest of his heart’s temple. Our rabbis are our teachers and masters, but they do not intercede for us, and their prayers are no diﬀerent from ours. We do not need or want any priestly caste to stand between us and our God. One would suppose that the Jews would have learned their lesson in history’s strict school. What they learned was the wrong lesson—that if the Temple could be destroyed, it could also be rebuilt—from which they concluded that because it had been rebuilt once after seventy years, this would inevitably happen again, and in another seventy years there would be another Temple.
The Roman legions were about to resume their campaign when word arrived that Nero had committed suicide. Galba succeeded him. Galba was killed, and Otho succeeded him. Vitellius marched down to Rome from Germany with his legions to defeat Otho’s forces and assume the purple. Vitellius ate four or ﬁve meals a day and then vomited so that he could eat more. His brother Lucius once gave him a banquet with two thousand diﬀerent dishes of ﬁsh and seven thousand of poultry. Even Rome was disgusted.
It was for this as much as anything else that he destroyed Jerusalem. Josephus addressed the Jews,* speaking for the Romans but saying what was clearly the truth: ‘‘It would be a Scandalous Bondage in deed to serve a Master that a Man of Honour would be ashamed to own; but it is Another Case to be Subject to a People that have the whole World at their Feet. And where is that Spot in the Universe that has scap’d the Dominion of the Romans; saving only where Extreme Heats or Colds have render’d the Place Intolerable and Useless.