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Author Topic: Ornery U - History of Judaism
seekingprometheus
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quote:
Invisible, maybe, but not undetectable
I'm assuming it's a dating thing--but I guess that I'm just one of those guys who needs a DTR talk. [Wink]
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starLisa
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quote:
Originally posted by kenmeer livermaile:
" Galactus rules.

Fixed that for you."

Donka schoen. I haven't read comix since childhood.

Your loss, dude. Not that Marvel is worth reading, but still, Galactus? That's classic.
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starLisa
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quote:
Originally posted by seekingprometheus:
Can one of you explain the significance of the solar/lunar calendar spat?

Is this just a trivial nitpick with a lot of gas, or are there further ramifications invisible to the outsider?

The latter. If Ricky can find something, however far a stretch it may be, to try and undermine Judaism and call BS on it, he'll leap at the opportunity.
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Adam Masterman
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A suggestion:

Its clear to me and, I imagine, everyone else, which points of view you and starLisa are coming from. Yours is a secular historical narrative, and hers is an insider theological perspective. Both are, IMO, interesting and informative. So why the debate? Why not simply present your view here, let her present hers their, and let each stand on their merits. That would seem to me more in accord with the idea of Ornery U. Just my $.02.

Adam

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Kent
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I agree, this is getting annoying.
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starLisa
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quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Seriously. Cite it. Or retract it. I say there are no such references. Bear in mind as well that the book of Ezra/Nehemiah was a single book, like Kings and Samuel and Chronicles. The break into two books was a much, much later innovation.

That the break of the books came later is true. The Nehemiah reference I cannot find at this time, and I am willing to modify my claim that Nissan wasn't used as the beginning of the year after Nehemiah, since it happens in Esther.

I hope you don't mind me nailing you to the wall on this point, but I'm going to keep going until you either cite something or retract the claim. Nowhere in Esther does it say that Nisan is the beginning of the year. If it did, it wouldn't be significant, because this was taking place in Persia and the Persian calendar did start in the spring, but it's not relevant, because calling Nisan "the first month" doesn't make it the beginning of the year. Even now, we call Nisan the first month and Tishri the seventh, despite Rosh Hashana being in Tishri.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
The monarchy didn't exist after that, Ricky. Nisan was the beginning of the Jewish regnal year.

Nissan was decreed by god as the first month of the year long before the monarchy. It's true that there were different counts, different calendars and different new years, but the point remains that at a certain point, Nissan was abandoned as first month.

No, Ricky, it never was. It's still the first month. In fact, you may not be aware of this, but many Orthodox Jews refuse to use numbers for months when they write the date, because they view it as going against the fact that Nisan is the first month.

Does it bug you that the Jewish New Year starts at the beginning of the seventh month of the Jewish calendar? Because that's the way it is.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
I can easily point out that the “Nissan is first month of kings” passage smacks of apologetism

Yeah, but Ricky, anything that explains away one of your kvetches against Judaism is going to smack of apologetics to you.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
but please note this is NOT the type of argument I rely on. However, this (the moving of the new year) is a minor point compared to the calendar itself, or even the names of the months. Definitely minor compared to the script.

The script is minor. The months are minor. Judaism has always acknowledged that we changed the names of the months and the commonly used script around that time. Why does it seem so major to you?

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Apparently? Would you like me to quote that Mishnah in its entirety, and you can show me where it says anything about a solar calendar? Which was never used by Jews, except possibly by the tiny Dead Sea sect (not that I'm even willing to accept that until some evidence is shown)?

Obviously if we go solely by the Mishna, we'd have no debate [Smile]

Well, there you go. <grin>

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
You must understand that I am not, a-priori, accepting the dead sea priests' claims. Nor do I think they were the majority and somehow, trickily dispossessed. I do think they were a minority, that most of the people preferred the pharisee way, but they were not as vanishing small as you would make it, and there are indications that they were of non trivial impact on the nation as whole.

Saying so doesn't make it so, Ricky. You've avoided substantiating this claim.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
[b]I disagree. There's no evidence that it was brought back from Mesopotamia, and you can't prove that it wasn't in use among our people before that, because it's pretty much impossible to prove a negative. All you can say is that the inscriptions that have been found were in Ktav Ivri.


No evidence? That's kinda pushing it.

I don't think so.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
But the difference is, if a Hebrew stele is found from the 800's BCE in Ashuri, I'll change my opinion. No backbone, you know. Just prove them wrong and they change the theory... [Smile] I mean, do you seriously contend that the Hebrews always had the Ashuri script, before there even was an Ashur? That the original Torah of Moses was written in that, and not Ivri?

Yes. Here's a good discussion of the issue (it starts about halfway down the page).

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
You do realize that very little of any written material is extant from before the exile. Or after the exile, for that matter, for centuries. We wrote on degradable materials for the most part. You know that. Hide parchment. The fact that the Dead Sea scrolls were found is due solely to the fact that they were in such a dry place. It was unusual in the extreme. There's next to no written material preserved from the First Commonwealth, and much of what there is isn't even from us. It's Moabite.

See above. I mean, I couldn't find it in a quick search, but what is the earliest this script was found anywhere?

Ktav Ivri, you mean? Probably the Mesha Stele. Around the time of Jehoshaphat. Or Shalmaneser III in Assyria.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Hold on there. Idolatry was the exception, and not the rule, at least in Judah.

And yet it happened quite a bit. Even in Judah.

Define "quite a bit". Any bit was too much, and the prophets focused on it. It doesn't mean that it was common.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Besides, even in Judah you find zero examples of interpretive, scholarly authority.

Or, you know, going to the bathroom.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
People aren't singled out for spiritual authority because they exhibit great learning. It doesn't even say (as far as I remember, I could be wrong on this detail) that god chose them to speak to because of that. It is not presented as the top virtue the way it is in rabbinical literature. At all. The Nevi'im and Ketubim do not have precisely the same values as rabbinical literature.

Sure they do.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
It didn't need to be in Second Temple times, either, until fairly far in. Disputes were few and far between, and many of them first started when the Saduccees took over the Sanhedrin and made it impossible for rare disputes to be decided decisively.

First, you make it sound like intra-pharisee dispute didn't exist. Not only did it, it sometimes got violent.

I'm not saying that as well. That's the only kind of dispute that matters. But it didn't happen until the mechanism we used to resolve such disputes was unavailable.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Second, yes, the Sadducee-Pharisee rift only starts in earnest more than 300 years after the 2nd temple is built. That's a testament to Ezra's greatness <g>

Or a testament to the fact that Tzadok didn't start his little sect until then.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Second, halachot began being handed down before the appearance of Sadducees as such, in the Grand Knesset. It was a long, slow process, and priests were at the forefront for many years. The Seleucid years brought that to an end.

I'm not sure what you mean by that. No, the priests were not. There were no Sadducees at the time of the Great Assembly.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
God said, yes. God said "bring this sacrifice" or God said "do this or do that", no. If you think otherwise, cite it.

I don't understand this.

You're claiming that the prophets gave laws. They did not. They had no status, as prophets, to engage in issues of Jewish law. Those of them who were Torah scholars (which granted, was most of them) engaged in issues of Jewish law as such, but the two roles were kept separate.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Again, you're talking about a separatist sect that was on the level of David Koresh's group in Texas. Don't make them something they weren't.

Again you relegate them to Koresh size without a shred of evidence.

Excuse me? They were tiny. They were off in the desert. They were extreme. There's no evidence, anywhere, of any antecendents or descendents of their sect. The only reason they're such a big deal is that it was hot and dry there, so their documents happened to be preserved.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
No one writing about the major religious movements in America in the early-mid 90's would have mentioned the Davidians. The Essenes were mentioned.

You're cheating. There's no proof that the Dead Sea sect were Essenes. There are many differences between what we know about the Dead Sea folks and what we know about the Essenes. Norman Golb, for one, strongly disputes the connection.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
I mean, it's kinda disingenuous of you to pretend that the scrolls don't mean anything, when if it was only up to your sources we wouldn't even know that much. And your answer is basically “trust us, we know the only unvarnished truth”. Does not work like that.

Why not? Unless you're starting from a critical need to reject what we say?

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
“The various dissenters had versions of their own. Is part of the point. The Sadducees had the torah and bible too and reached different conclusions...

And...?”

And they had the bible just like your tradition. Just being “of the tradition that begat the bible” doesn't guarantee seeing things your way, which is precisely what you were implying.[/QB][/QUOTE]

The Bible is a tiny drop in the ocean of the Torah, Ricky. If you drop all documented authorial intent, you can interpret anything any way you want. That's what the Sadducees did.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Without God. With God considered to be an extraordinary claim that runs counter to Occam's Razor. That's hardly objective, Ricky.

Like I said, this be a history class. It's more objective than your approach, which requires to accept things because Judaism says so.

You mean holding that Judaism probably knows more about its own origins than the axe grinding of scholars who are desperate to find a no-god version of those origins.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Just because it's Judaism's take on Judaism doesn't make it the truth. Would you accept a Vatican published edition as the definitive history of the RC church?

"Not everything is true, therefore nothing is true". I don't accept that process, Ricky.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Well, actually, I don't think you had. But if you'd prefer, I'll do that.

On the “OM – Urgent request” thread [Smile]

Didn't see it. Sorry. I haven't read that thread.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
First thing that showed up for me was some "Yeshua" nuttiness. And I maintain what I said. Even if Daniel is considered to be a prophet by some, what is in his book is not considered prophecy. Or it would have been put in the Neviim section of Tanakh.

<sigh> Such distinctions are beyond me. I see texts by rabbis on websites by recognized yeshivas referring to “The prophet Daniel”. Mongo him just read words, and alla that [Smile]

Not a problem. I'm glad I could clear that up for you. <grin>

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Nope. That's not how it works. There is a dispute between Jewish and Greek chronology over how long the Persian period lasted. A dispute of about 166 years. If the First Temple was destroyed in 587 BCE, the Exodus was in 1476 BCE. If it was destroyed in 421 BCE, the Exodus was in 1310 BCE. But if it was destroyed in 421, all of ancient near eastern chronology would have to be brought down equally by 166 years, which would bring Akhnaton down as well. It's all of a piece. The Exodus was definitely before Akhnaton, even according to the conventional chronology.

No. <g> You admit yourself that the Jewish count of years is fatally flawed, unless one pushes the entire accepted dating of the ancient near east by 166 years.

Correct.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Who says those “missing” years aren't before Moses? Or between Moses and David?

No one disputes where those years are, Ricky. There's even a Wikipedia article on the subject. A book was written about it called Jewish History in Conflict, by Mitchell First. The dispute is over the length of the Persian Empire. Jewish history, and local Persian history, both put about 50 years between the fall of Babylon to Cyrus and the fall of Persia to Alexander. The Greeks made it about 210 years.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Or are you seriously suggesting that the Jewish count is correct and all others mistaken?

Yes. That irks you, doesn't it. I'm more than suggesting it. I'm saying that the local count is more reliable than the count brought back to Greece by historian/entertainers who collected folk tales and cherry picked the ones that were more entertaining. Hell, even Herodotus says he heard 4 separate and contradictory stories of the history of Cyrus the Great. He just picked the one he liked best.

There's no real reason to prefer the Greek reconstructions over the Jewish and Persian views, which were local and had historical continuity. Other than the fact that western civilization is based on Greco-Roman culture.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
That the Persian era lasted only some 30 years? That Alexander lived 2160 years ago and not 2330?

The Persian era was longer than that, but it overlapped with the Babylonian Empire.
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starLisa
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quote:
Originally posted by Adam Masterman:
A suggestion:

Its clear to me and, I imagine, everyone else, which points of view you and starLisa are coming from. Yours is a secular historical narrative, and hers is an insider theological perspective. Both are, IMO, interesting and informative. So why the debate? Why not simply present your view here, let her present hers their, and let each stand on their merits. That would seem to me more in accord with the idea of Ornery U. Just my $.02.

Adam

I'll gladly do that. If Ricky posts to this thread in a way that isn't responding to what I wrote, I won't argue with him.
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kenmeer livermaile
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"Your loss, dude. Not that Marvel is worth reading, but still, Galactus? That's classic."

Aye, as in a classic memory of my mid-60s childhood. Works for me. Like Mary Poppins. Seeing it now isn't the same.

seek: what's DTR? You younguns and your acronyms.

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seekingprometheus
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quote:
seek: what's DTR? You younguns and your acronyms.
Define The Relationship.

The "talk" young dating couples have to establish how serious/monogamous their relationship is.

I was trying to be punny.

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RickyB
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Well, it's hard not to respond when there are inaccuracies, besides, this is what we do here. I mean, how do you present your view if not by responding to points? [Smile] Just ignore those posts and post questions if you like. However, i'm gonna refrain from a long scroll right now.

Just one obvious point on which I was to be nailed to the wall - of course it says in Esther that Nissan was the first month - by calling the month before it (Adar) the twelfth month. Also, Lisa has this tendency of presenting things as applying to all Orthodox Judaism. I have never, ever heard a religious Jew call Nissan "the first month" unless referring to the biblical passages that make it so.

And one more, from the end of your post, since it deals with none-Jewish material: You care to show me where local Persian reckoning puts only 50 years from Cyrus to Darius III? I mean, where did the entire history in between go? How much time between Marathon and Alexander? For this to be true, not only do the Greeks have to be wrong about Persian history, they have to be wrong about their own.
How do you put all the kings that are known to have exist between Cyrus and Darius III into 50 years? It makes zero sense. And notice that it's not just "the Greeks" - it's accepted dating since then. No-one who doesn't NEED to prove that Jewish dating is correct sees any reason to accept this theory of overlapping. It's not like Herodotus' word is accepted as gospel, that modern research isn't fully aware of his sideshow aspects, or that his data hasn't been analyzed over and over - and his own dating found wrong in places. We don't pick just one source and say "this is the truth".

Finally, I can't find the list right now, but you'd have a hard time squeezing all the high priests, from the one when the 2nd temple was opened to the one who was said to have met with Alexander, into 50 years.

As for the significance of the "spat" - Orthodox Judaism, as exemplified by Lisa here, likes to pretend that the way it is now is the way it's always been, and that there were no major theological disputes arising from the innovations of the rabbis. It changes the entire way you look at the history. Was the oral toarah a development, or was the oral torah handed at Mount Sinai, not even breathed about for over a millenium, and then suddenly turned into the major issue and guiding light.

OK, I'm not gonna fisk the rest of your scroll till Thursday. You may of course respond to this post.

This issue is very central to any historical examination of Jewish history, but there are others. Other questions, anyone?

[ February 26, 2008, 12:35 AM: Message edited by: RickyB ]

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Athelstan
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Well I’d like to know how modern Israel started out as a model Socialist State yet ended up best friends with the United States of America. Israel, in the shape of Ben Gurion, was looking for the big protector and eventually through well known circumstances the Soviet Union was no longer considered friendly. But at some point in time the Socialists in Government and the Army must have been ousted for a particular local reason. The story I was told, admittedly by Trade Union sources, was that the Religious Right drove all the Socialists out of Israel.
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Jesse
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Nobody drove Ricky out of Israel!!!

[Big Grin]

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RickyB
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Wow, all be sure to tell all the socialists I know [Smile]

That's a different class. I'm opening it right now.

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hobsen
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What difference does the question whether the present teachings of Orthodox Judaism were known to Moses more than three thousand years ago make today? My understanding - which could well be wrong - is that they have in any case been much the same for at least 1500 years. Would it make a big difference if they were proved to be from the time of Moses, or from only 1500 years ago?
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Pete at Home
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Following Lisa's link, I'm surprised to see the assertion that God gave Moses the Torah. Would that include the parts that describe how Moses died and was buried by the hand of God? Or is there some concession that that part at least was written by a human hand, and not Moses' hand?

"Yes. That irks you, doesn't it. I'm more than suggesting it. I'm saying that the local count is more reliable than the count brought back to Greece by historian/entertainers who collected folk tales and cherry picked the ones that were more entertaining."

Oh, I'll definitely buy that. The Tenach is testament to the fact that its chroniclers were more interested in recording facts as they perceived them than in engaging in tribal apologetics. The oral traditions, from what I've seen, seem to engage in tribal apologetics, e.g. explaining how Joseph didn't really intermarry as suggested in Torah, mitigating the sin of David, etc.

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starLisa
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quote:
Originally posted by hobsen:
What difference does the question whether the present teachings of Orthodox Judaism were known to Moses more than three thousand years ago make today? My understanding - which could well be wrong - is that they have in any case been much the same for at least 1500 years. Would it make a big difference if they were proved to be from the time of Moses, or from only 1500 years ago?

Yes. Judaism stands or falls on an unbroken chain of continuity stretching from Sinai until today.
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starLisa
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quote:
Originally posted by Pete at Home:
Following Lisa's link, I'm surprised to see the assertion that God gave Moses the Torah. Would that include the parts that describe how Moses died and was buried by the hand of God? Or is there some concession that that part at least was written by a human hand, and not Moses' hand?

Well, Moses' hand was a human one, but I know what you mean.

There is a very minority view that says Joshua wrote the last eight verses of Deuteronomy. The primary view is that Moses wrote them, in tears.

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Pete at Home
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quote:
Originally posted by starLisa:
quote:
Originally posted by hobsen:
What difference does the question whether the present teachings of Orthodox Judaism were known to Moses more than three thousand years ago make today? My understanding - which could well be wrong - is that they have in any case been much the same for at least 1500 years. Would it make a big difference if they were proved to be from the time of Moses, or from only 1500 years ago?

Yes. Judaism stands or falls on an unbroken chain of continuity stretching from Sinai until today.
Continuity of some things, yes. But continuity of everything now recognized as Jewish? All 613 mitzvot? I thought that even most Orthodox Jews recognized that at least some of the 365 Negative Commandments grew out of Ezra's project to build a hedge about the law.
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hobsen
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Lisa is nice, and smart, and her views appear to be about as central to Judaism as the views of those who believe God created the world at nightfall preceding 23 October 4004 BC are to Christianity. But she seems to be often right on details, so I should treat her views with extreme respect. That "hedge about the law" reference is a good question; if the words do not mean an elaboration of practices in the time of Moses, what do they mean?
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Pete at Home
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quote:
Originally posted by hobsen:
Lisa is nice, and smart, and her views appear to be about as central to Judaism as the views of those who believe God created the world at nightfall preceding 23 October 4004 BC are to Christianity. But she seems to be often right on details, so I should treat her views with extreme respect.

I greatly enjoyed Lisa's thoroughness in her exchange with Ricky above. After her response to my question on Moses, I see her as a scholar with a heart of a poet and if you don't know that was high praise then you do not know me. [Smile] If my respect for Lisa does not come out in my language then I misspoke.

quote:
That "hedge about the law" reference is a good question; if the words do not mean an elaboration of practices in the time of Moses, what do they mean?
Thank you; that's a much better phrasing of my question. I did not mean to marginalize Lisa's views but rather to make clear what I knew and what I did not know, so that Lisa did not feel obliged to provide me with Remedial Judaism 098. [Smile]

[ February 26, 2008, 06:29 PM: Message edited by: Pete at Home ]

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starLisa
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quote:
Originally posted by Pete at Home:
quote:
Originally posted by starLisa:
quote:
Originally posted by hobsen:
What difference does the question whether the present teachings of Orthodox Judaism were known to Moses more than three thousand years ago make today? My understanding - which could well be wrong - is that they have in any case been much the same for at least 1500 years. Would it make a big difference if they were proved to be from the time of Moses, or from only 1500 years ago?

Yes. Judaism stands or falls on an unbroken chain of continuity stretching from Sinai until today.
Continuity of some things, yes. But continuity of everything now recognized as Jewish? All 613 mitzvot? I thought that even most Orthodox Jews recognized that at least some of the 365 Negative Commandments grew out of Ezra's project to build a hedge about the law.
A few mistakes here. First of all, it wasn't Ezra's project; it was something said by the Men of the Great Assembly. Granted, Ezra was one of them, but still.

Second of all, I probably should address this on the other thread, but briefly, all of the 613 commandments are Sinaitic. The rabbinic extensions are a wholly different category of laws. For example, the Torah forbids us to cook beheima meat and beheima milk together. But the rabbis extended that to all meat and all dairy products.

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starLisa
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quote:
Originally posted by hobsen:
Lisa is nice, and smart, and her views appear to be about as central to Judaism as the views of those who believe God created the world at nightfall preceding 23 October 4004 BC are to Christianity.

I don't know enough about such Christians to say, but you can take my word for it that what I've posted here is the mainstream view of every Orthodox Jewish group on earth. Or you could find some Orthodox Jews to ask, but you'll find that I'm being accurate here.

quote:
Originally posted by hobsen:
But she seems to be often right on details, so I should treat her views with extreme respect. That "hedge about the law" reference is a good question; if the words do not mean an elaboration of practices in the time of Moses, what do they mean?

I've been asked to keep stuff like that in the other thread. Ask me there.

PS: I'm not always nice.

[ February 26, 2008, 07:49 PM: Message edited by: starLisa ]

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starLisa
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quote:
Originally posted by Pete at Home:
I greatly enjoyed Lisa's thoroughness in her exchange with Ricky above. After her response to my question on Moses, I see her as a scholar with a heart of a poet and if you don't know that was high praise then you do not know me. [Smile] If my respect for Lisa does not come out in my language then I misspoke.

I felt no disrespect. And as much as I'd like to take credit for the "he wrote it, in tears", that's actually what the rabbis say about it.
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RickyB
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All the difference in the world. For one, if they are the product of development they can be gainsaid, whereas if they were handed down by god same as the written torah, then every last halacha receives the same amount of inviolability. That's spiritually. Historically, well, aside from the counting problem, to accept Lisa's version you have to accept that the history of the Jews operated according to dynamics totally unheard of anywhere else. Not just a unique story, but one that makes no sense whatsoever unless you believe it was so.

Understand: The Prophets and Scriptures parts of the old testament (everything after deuteronomy) cover a period of roughly 1,000 years. None of that documentation contains a shred of evidence to support any existence of a sacred oral law beyond the five books of moses. None. There is even strong argument the Deuteronomy was only written when "found" during the reign of king Josiah, which if you believe totally changes views on Jewish history.

But even if not - if the oral torah always existed, then anyone who objected to it is pretty much a crackpot who just couldn't handle all the commandments and concocted some silly claim to get to stop. If the oral torah was a historical process, then we have a totally different story. This also majorly impacts the history of Christianity, since that was inspired some by the Dead Sea guys and was embraced by a lot of Jews who didn't find the oral torah holy.

I want to make this clear - Rabbinical Judaism is followed by the absolute, overwhelming majority of Jews for the last 1500 years or more. Not only that - I don't think the path of Judaism was somehow usurped by th rabbis. I think their version represents the slow and evolving choice of the people, and I also find it preferable to a society dominated by any of the other approaches. Definitely preferble to the hideous Dead Sea priests.

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RickyB
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"Granted, Ezra was one of them, but still."

Just one of them? Leader and founder, more like.

"but you can take my word for it that what I've posted here is the mainstream view of every Orthodox Jewish group on earth."

I'm sorry, I gotta dispute that. I['ve already shown how totally orthodox sources use a phrase that Lisa, for one, totally jumped at and called incorrect. Mostly, but there are points on which this is not true.

"Oh, I'll definitely buy that. The Tenach is testament to the fact that its chroniclers were more interested in recording facts as they perceived them than in engaging in tribal apologetics. The oral traditions, from what I've seen, seem to engage in tribal apologetics, e.g. explaining how Joseph didn't really intermarry as suggested in Torah, mitigating the sin of David, etc."

Pete, so you believe that the fall of the 1st temple waas at 421 BCE? That the Persian empire existed, west of the Euphrates, alongside the Babylonian one? That the Greeks at Marathon and Salamis were actually fighting the Babylonian empire, as represented by Persian vassals? Cause you gotta buy all those to agree with Lisa.

The fact that the bible is pretty accurate about facts doesn't mean it has to be accurate about precise chronology

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RickyB
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Lisa, a friend just offered a hypotheses that can reconcile the dates and obviate the Babylonian empire stretching deep into the 5th century idea. He shows that if you count the years until Noah with the assumption that they didn't use leap years until then, that cuts the requisite 150 or so years. Do you subscribe to this?

That doesn't reconcile Daniel, but means the Jewish chronology isn't fundamentally out of whack with that of everyone else.

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Pete at Home
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quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
"Oh, I'll definitely buy that. The Tenach is testament to the fact that its chroniclers were more interested in recording facts as they perceived them than in engaging in tribal apologetics. The oral traditions, from what I've seen, seem to engage in tribal apologetics, e.g. explaining how Joseph didn't really intermarry as suggested in Torah, mitigating the sin of David, etc."

Pete, so you believe that the fall of the 1st temple waas at 421 BCE? That the Persian empire existed, west of the Euphrates, alongside the Babylonian one? That the Greeks at Marathon and Salamis were actually fighting the Babylonian empire, as represented by Persian vassals? Cause you gotta buy all those to agree with Lisa.

The fact that the bible is pretty accurate about facts doesn't mean it has to be accurate about precise chronology

I said that I agree with Lisa with respect to trusting a Biblical authority over a Greek "Historian," at least where issues of tribal self-interest may have conflicted with truth.

OTOH, the Tenach writers, especially Isaiah, had a poetic tendency to conflate enemies with Israel, and to speak in symbols and types.

If a matter is settled by a variety of reputable sources, then you won't find me arguing that the Bible should supercede on Chronology.

I suspect that Deuteronomy was the previous "Oral Torah" until written down during the time of Josiah and that the traditions considered less reliable were continued and elaborated on afterwards before eventually becoming the Gemara, etc.

And obviously as LDS I don't even have a problem with the scholarship arguing that the Torah itself was stitched together from two major accounts (one pro-Joseph and one pro-Judah) as well as some minor accounts. (one could read Ezekiel's remarks about the sticks of Judah and Joseph as calling for precisely that reconcilliation, although obviously as a mormon I read it otherwise.) In contrast, (correct me if I'm wrong, Lisa) there's no Tenach authority for the proposition that all five books of the Torah were written down together prior to Josiah's time.

Personally, I find the Tenach *more* persuasive, not less persuasive, as human testimony of our early interactions with God.

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seekingprometheus
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quote:
He shows that if you count the years until Noah with the assumption that they didn't use leap years until then, that cuts the requisite 150 or so years. Do you subscribe to this?
Huh??? Maybe I'm just not following along correctly, but 150 years is well over 50,000 days. At a single day every 4 years, that's over 200,000 years for a calendar to get off that far.
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RickyB
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the Jewish leap year is an entire month once every 3 years or so [Smile] In a Jewish leap year, the month of Adar is doubled. Like this year.
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starLisa
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quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Lisa, a friend just offered a hypotheses that can reconcile the dates and obviate the Babylonian empire stretching deep into the 5th century idea. He shows that if you count the years until Noah with the assumption that they didn't use leap years until then, that cuts the requisite 150 or so years. Do you subscribe to this?

That's just silly. The Flood was in 1656. Divide that by 19 and multiply it by 7, and you get 610 months. That's 50 years. Second of all, the 166 "missing" years are definitely between Nebuchadnezzar and Alexander.
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starLisa
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quote:
Originally posted by seekingprometheus:
quote:
He shows that if you count the years until Noah with the assumption that they didn't use leap years until then, that cuts the requisite 150 or so years. Do you subscribe to this?
Huh??? Maybe I'm just not following along correctly, but 150 years is well over 50,000 days. At a single day every 4 years, that's over 200,000 years for a calendar to get off that far.
In the Jewish calendar (and in the ancient Babylonian one as well), a month is added 7 out of every 19 years. Not a day every four. It's a lunar calendar, not a solar one.

As a matter of fact, we're in the middle of an added month right now.

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seekingprometheus
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quote:
the Jewish leap year is an entire month once every 3 years or so In a Jewish leap year, the month of Adar is doubled. Like this year.
I see. Color me embarrassed. [Smile]

Perhaps one of you could provide some basic background info on the jewish calendar.

(I suppose I could just go to wikipedia, but that would defeat the purpose of OU [Smile] ).

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RickyB
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Lisa, you're right. I did the math and it comes out as you say. But you do know that the dating of the entire history from Nebuchadnezzar and Alexander is not dependent solely or even majorly on Herodotus alone? That there are coins and a plethora of orthographic evidence? Of mentionings of various events? I mean, I don't think there are missing years. Your side does [Smile]
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RickyB
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"Second of all, the 166 "missing" years are definitely between Nebuchadnezzar and Alexander."

OK, wait. using the current calendar (gregorian) as a benchmark, please date the following events:

Fall of Shomron

Fall of Jerusalem to Nebuchadnezzar (you said 421 BCE, according to your calendar, yes?)

Alexander

If the missing years are between Nebuchadnezzar and Alexander, then accepted dating for Alexander is wrong too [Smile]

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starLisa
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quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
"Second of all, the 166 "missing" years are definitely between Nebuchadnezzar and Alexander."

OK, wait. using the current calendar (gregorian) as a benchmark, please date the following events:

Fall of Shomron

Fall of Jerusalem to Nebuchadnezzar (you said 421 BCE, according to your calendar, yes?)

Alexander

If the missing years are between Nebuchadnezzar and Alexander, then accepted dating for Alexander is wrong too [Smile]

Yes. By 10 years. Sorry, I should have said that the "missing years" are between the fall of Nineveh and the beginning of the Seleucid Era. I was being imprecise.
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starLisa
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quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Lisa, you're right. I did the math and it comes out as you say. But you do know that the dating of the entire history from Nebuchadnezzar and Alexander is not dependent solely or even majorly on Herodotus alone? That there are coins and a plethora of orthographic evidence? Of mentionings of various events? I mean, I don't think there are missing years. Your side does [Smile]

Actually, that's not true. There's a so-called "Dark Age" in Persia where absolutely no orthographic evidence exists for well over a century. And there is next to no archaeological evidence for the Persian period in Israel. It's so sparse that it's also considered a "dark age".
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starLisa
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quote:
Originally posted by seekingprometheus:
quote:
the Jewish leap year is an entire month once every 3 years or so In a Jewish leap year, the month of Adar is doubled. Like this year.
I see. Color me embarrassed. [Smile]

Perhaps one of you could provide some basic background info on the jewish calendar.

(I suppose I could just go to wikipedia, but that would defeat the purpose of OU [Smile] ).

Well, a lunar year is about 354 days. A solar year is about 365.25 days. That .25 (it's a little less, actually) is why we have an extra day added every four years.

But the lunar calendar is about 11 days short. And a lunar month is about 29.5 days. So seven out of every 19 years, we add an extra month to the calendar. There are always either 2 or 3 years between leap months.

The Babylonians sometimes added an extra version of Elul, the 6th month, and sometimes an extra version of Adar, the 12th month. We only do an extra Adar. The current month according to the Jewish calendar is called Adar Rishon, or First Adar. Next month will be Adar Sheni, or Second Adar.

Curiously enough, it's Adar Rishon which is the added month. Adar Sheni is the month that's the equivalent of regular Adar in a non-leap year.

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RickyB
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Probably to keep annual events (I dunno, Purim, Moses's b-day and death day) in their regular relation to passover. Just a guess.

Lisa - here's a teaser. No looking up, just logic: Why'd Maimonides write all his books in Arabic, but Mishne Torah in Hebrew?

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RickyB
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"And there is next to no archaeological evidence for the Persian period in Israel."

Sorry, that's just not true at all. I happened to translate papers (Ed. to add: by tenured professors, not theses papers trying to get noticed. Accepted scholarship) on sites from the Persian era. Not conjecture. Definitive dating. There's an explosion of orthographic data once you enter the Persian era. A lot of coins. A lot of written pottery. a whole lot more trade lists and the like. The Persians opened up their empire for movement and activity increased.

Again - when did Shomron fall? Not 722 BCE as commonly accepted? When did Alex defeat Darius? Not 333? Because 10 years still leaves 156 to account for.

[ February 27, 2008, 11:51 AM: Message edited by: RickyB ]

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starLisa
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quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Probably to keep annual events (I dunno, Purim, Moses's b-day and death day) in their regular relation to passover. Just a guess.

Lisa - here's a teaser. No looking up, just logic: Why'd Maimonides write all his books in Arabic, but Mishne Torah in Hebrew?

That's easy. The whole point of his Mishneh Torah was to be easily accessible to all Jews. Not just those in Arabic lands. Do you have another reason?
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