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Torah Basics
#1
saidjake Wrote:In the Chumash, are the commentaries [explanations] by Rashi, Rambam, Ramban, Onkelos, etc. considered Oral Torah?

The explanations by Rashi, Rambam, Ramban, and other authoritative Rishonim and Acharonim Rabbis were universally accepted into the body of Oral Torah texts. What Onkelos provided was a translation of the Hebrew text into Aramaic.

saidjake Wrote:If so, how do we explain the different renderings on the same topic? Often times there will be a commentary followed by, "alternatively, ..." My mother-in-law is finding this to be inconsistency and I'm not sure how to answer as I can see her point.

Moses received and transmitted many different explicit and implicit interpretations from G-d for every word of the Chumash, each connected with the breadth and depth of the Divine Wisdom. These alternative interpretations are embodied within the four levels, or dimensions, of Torah knowledge, abbreviated as "PaRDeS."

"PaRDeS" [literally "orchard"] is the Hebrew acrostic for the names of the four dimensions of Torah wisdom, respectively:

P'shat - the simple meanings
Remez - the meanings hinted by numerical values, spellings of words etc.
D'rush - the homiletic meanings.
Sod - the "secret," i.e. kabbalistic, meanings.
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#2
Director Michael Wrote:Moses received and transmitted many different explicit and implicit interpretations from G-d for every word of the Chumash, each connected with the breadth and depth of the Divine Wisdom. These alternative interpretations are embodied within the four levels, or dimensions, of Torah knowledge, abbreviated as "PaRDeS."

"PaRDeS" [literally "orchard"] is the Hebrew acrostic for the names of the four dimensions of Torah wisdom, respectively:

P'shat - the simple meanings
Remez - the meanings hinted by numerical values, spellings of words etc.
D'rush - the homiletic meanings.
Sod - the "secret," i.e. kabbalistic, meanings.

Are all these levels acceptable for a Noahide to learn? I've been taught that a Noahide shouldn't study Kabbalah or Gemetria, but if they come across one of these interpretations while studying it's OK to read it, just not to delve into it.

Thanks,
Donny
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#3
A Noahide may learn the "p'shat" of the Hebrew Bible (Tanakh), and if once in a while the "p'shat" explanation happens to briefly mention a teaching from one of the other levels, it is not a problem.
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#4
Shalom Rabbis and Dr. Schulman,
I have a question about the 613 laws that a Jewish person should follow. Are all of them laws that a Jewish person has to follow when the Temple will be rebuilt, or will just a smaller number of laws be followed when the Holy Temple is reconstructed?
Another question is, when Moshiach comes, is it possible that the set of rules would change, or the number of them would be increased or decreased after the entire nation of Israel is back in the Holy Land? And if so would that be through Moshiach himself?
Yours sincerely
Elinor
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#5
oceanoah Wrote:Shalom Rabbis and Dr. Schulman,
I have a question about the 613 laws that a Jewish person should follow. Are all of them laws that a Jewish person has to follow when the Temple will be rebuilt, or will just a smaller number of laws be followed when the Holy Temple is reconstructed?

There are some concepts here which are not intuitive, so some explanation and thought is required to appreciate the special conditions of Torah Law.

1) The 613 Jewish commandments (and the 7 Noahide commandments) that were given within the Torah at Mount Sinai are eternal. This means that each of these commandments stands forever, regardless of whether or not the particular conditions of its application may be existing or possibly existing.

2) The 613 Jewish commandments are comprised of 248 "postive" commandments (things that are commanded to be done under specific conditions), and 365 "negative" commandments (things that are commanded to not be done under specific conditions).

3) The negative commandments are always in effect. Thus, for example, a Jew is continuously forbidden to eat the meat of a burnt-offering, even now when Jews are forbidden to bring burnt offerings (which they may only bring in the Holy Temple in Jerusalem).

4) Many of the positive Jewish commandments have limited application. Some only apply to men, some only to women, some only to the priests (kohanim), some only to judges, some only to the king, etc. Some only apply during the existence of the Holy Temple, some only apply to those who farm the land in Israel, etc.

5) Some of the positive Jewish commandments are absolutely obligatory on every adult male Jew, at all times, everywhere. The total number of these "unconditional" positive Jewish commandments is 60, for a Jewish man who is living in normal conditions. Of these, 46 are also unconditionally obligatory on an adult Jewish woman.

6) All of the Torah's commandments will continue to apply in the Messianic era, when the Temple is rebuilt and all of the 12 Tribes of Israel are returned and resettled in their designated areas within the Holy Land. However, some of them will not have any occasion to actually be carried out. For example, it is commanded that a Jew who is convicted by the Great Sanhedrin of a capital sin (which can only be during the existence and functioning of the Holy Temple) is to be executed by one of four methods. However, after Moshiach comes no Jew will sin, so this will never have occasion to be carried out in actual practice.

oceanoah Wrote:Another question is, when Moshiach comes, is it possible that the set of rules would change, or the number of them would be increased or decreased after the entire nation of Israel is back in the Holy Land? And if so would that be through Moshiach himself?

As explained above, the 613 Jewish commandments (no more and no less) are eternal, although a number of them will not apply in actual practice after Moshiach comes, and a number of them which don't apply now will apply then, after the Temple is rebuilt and all of the 12 Tribes are returned.

However, the Rabbinical injunctions do not have eternal permanence, per se. When Moshiach comes, some Rabbinical injunctions may be lifted, some may be changed, and others may be added. The supreme earthly Torah-law authority for Rabbinical injunctions and rulings on the correct observance of the Torah's commandments will be the Great Sanhedrin when it is re-established by Moshiach in its designated place adjacent to the rebuilt Holy Temple. Moshiach will preside over the future Sanhedrin as its leading sage (the Nasi).
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#6
Shalom our revered rabbis and dr. Schulman,
The commandments were written and handed out to Moses on the mount, or he wrote them himself as he heard a divine voice and writing down what he heard?
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#7
The process of the transmission of the Divine commandments through Moses is explained in detail in two of our web pages:

https://asknoah.org/essay/written_torah

https://asknoah.org/essay/oral_torah

When Moses and the Jewish people encamped at Mt. Sinai, G-d first dictated to Moses the Book of Genesis and the Book of Exodus covering the events up until their arrival at Sinai, and Moses also wrote down the commandments which they had received at the encampment of Mara, after they miraculously passed through the Sea of Reeds on dry land. That included the Seven Noahide Commandments.

The only written "text" that Moses received on Mt. Sinai during his three successive ascensions of 40 days each was the tablets of the Ten Commandments (which are 10 of the 613 Jewish commandments).

For the next nearly 40 years, Moses taught the details of the Jewish Commandments to the future leaders, to the Elders, and to the entire Jewish people orally, and they all made their own personal notes. These teaching were from the Oral Torah which G-d taught to Moses on Mt. Sinai.

Shortly before the end of Moses' physical life, he transcribed the entire Five Books of Moses as the first Torah scroll, as G-d dictated the text to him. He also wrote one Torah scroll for each Tribe, and another one which was kept in the Tabernacle and later in the Holy Temple.
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#8
Hello, when studying Torah is it OK to read the words internally (in one's head) or is it better for a person to mouth each word and/or speak each word out loud as one would in the manner of prayer?
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#9
It is OK for a Noahide to study Torah in either manner, since in either way the objective can be achieved, which is to study, learn and understand the material. This is an intellectual activity, and it can be accomplished with thought only.

Prayer on the other hand should be spoken verbally. This can be done quietly, but at least loudly enough so the person himself can hear the words that he is saying.
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#10
Quote:Shortly before the end of Moses' physical life, he transcribed the entire Five Books of Moses as the first Torah scroll, as G-d dictated the text to him. He also wrote one Torah scroll for each Tribe, and another one which was kept in the Tabernacle and later in the Holy Temple.

What about the remaining 19 books of the Tanach? Is it known which people wrote or transcribed these books? I know the book of Psalms was written by King David and Proverbs by Solomon, but I've never heard of who wrote the other books (Joshua, Judges, Samuel, Kings, etc.)
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