Ritual and Morality by Hyam Maccoby
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Ritual and Morality
By Hyam Maccoby

Ritual and Morality

The Ritual Purity System and its Place in Judaism

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Format: Hardback

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Ritual and Morality by Hyam Maccoby

Book Description

The book describes in detail the ritual purity system of the Hebrew Bible, and its development into the system of the rabbis. Certain human conditions require purification before contact is made with holy foods or areas. Recent scholarly theories (Milgrom, Neusner, Douglas) are discussed, and new theories are proposed for the origin of the Red Cow and Scapegoat rites. It is argued that the impurities concerned all derive from the human cycle of generation, birth and death, from which the Sanctuary is to be guarded; not because it needs protection from demonic powers (as in other ancient purity systems), but because of the reverence due to the divine presence. While the priestly code of holiness displays traces of earlier conceptions, its ritual has lost urgent salvific force, and has become a protocol for the Temple and a dedicatory code for a priestly people; the sources distinguish it from universal morality.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780521495400
ISBN-10: 0521495407
Format: Hardback
(216mm x 138mm x 17mm)
Pages: 246
Imprint: Cambridge University Press
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publish Date: 15-Jul-1999
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

Other Editions...


Books By Author Hyam Maccoby

Philosophy of the Talmud by Hyam Maccoby Philosophy of the Talmud, Paperback (August 2010)

A presentation of the philosophy of the "Talmud".

Ritual and Morality by Hyam Maccoby Ritual and Morality, Paperback (January 2009)

Clear explanation of non-dietary ritual purity laws of the Hebrew Bible; intelligible to non-specialist readers.

Early Rabbinic Writings by Hyam Maccoby Early Rabbinic Writings, Paperback (May 1988)

This book introduces the student to the full range of the early rabbinic writings with a thorough introduction and notes.

» View all books by Hyam Maccoby

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