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The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want. 23rd Psalm

TorahDating from approximately 2000 BC according to evidence in the Old Testament, Judaism is historically the "mother" of the two other major world religions, Christianity and Islam, which trace its roots back to Judaism, the world's oldest religion after Hinduism.

The book of Genesis begins the epic story with the lives of Judaism's original founders, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, followed by Moses who brought the Jews out of captivity in Egypt with the help of Joshua, who in turn led the tribes into Canaan, or The Promised Land.

Samuel later organized the various tribes into a kingdom which was originally led by Saul, followed by King David and King Solomon, who established Jerusalem as its center.

In 922 BC, the death of Solomon signaled the country's split into two kingdoms, Israel to the north and Judah to the south - both of which fell in subsequent centuries to Assyria and Babylonia respectively. The Greeks would later assume control, succeeded by the Roman Empire which claimed Judea and Israel as its own in 63 BC.

Concurrent with the rise of Christianity, the center of world Judaism fell with the destruction of Jerusalem and its temple in 70 AD.

During the early Dark Ages and continuing throughout the whole of the medieval period, Jews later became the subject of outrageous accusations and persecuted throughout Christian Europe.

The 20th century later saw the rise of the German Nazis who, in the name of racial purity, were responsible for 6 million Jewish lives lost during the Holocaust of the 1930's and '40's.

As a result of the Holocaust, a permanent Jewish homeland was created in Palestine following World War II. The state of Israel was officially formed on May 18, 1948. Since then, border wars and skirmishes continue to be played out in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in an increasingly intense Middle East.

also see in Holidays & Observances -> Chanukah | Passover | Yom Kippur | Rosh Hashana

More about Judaism around the Web:

Elsewhere on the Web, find out more about the long history of Judaism and its beliefs and tenets established in the Old Testament and the Torah, plus how the faithful continue to observe the ancient customs & traditions on annual Jewish holy days, along with images & photo galleries that tell the story of ancient Jewish art & culture ...


Judaism 101 - An introduction to the faith covering Jewish beliefs, holidays, language, scripture, practices & customs, with related links & resources. - The Judaism Site - Take an online course, or ask a question on Jewish law & teachings, with more information on related history, holidays, related feature stories on women's perspectives, family life, and first-person essays, active online discussion forum.

Jewish Virtual Library - Cyber encyclopedia with facts & information on Jewish & Israeli history, culture & politics worldwide with specific sections highlighting the Holocaust, Judaic treasures in the Library of Congress, plus general related references, statistics, maps.

Simple to Remember - An extensive collection of informative articles, MP3s and videos on Judaism with a directory of related resources.

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