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The Star of David (Hebrew magen david) is one of the symbols of Judaism.

Judaism is the religion and culture of the Jews.[1][2] Please note that not all Jews are religious but live the Jewish culture.


Judaism was developed in the Middle East by the ancient Hebrews.[3]


Judaism is characterized by belief in one transcendent God who has revealed himself to Abraham, Moses, and the Hebrew prophets and by a religious life in accordance with Scriptures and rabbinic traditions.[3] Rabbi Emeritus Kaughmann Kohler described Judaism as "the religion of joy, hope, and love."[1]


The symbol of Judaism is the Star of David, which is a six-pointed star design.[4]

Religious officials

Rabbis (teachers, masters) carry out teaching and educational functions[5] while mohels carry out the ritual circumcision called Brit Milah in accordance with the Abrahamic covenant.

Controversial practice

Judaism has historically held a belief in the so-called Abrahamic covenant which purports to require that every newborn boy be circumcised on the eighth day of life.[6] This has now become controversial, because of surgical risks, because of the certain intense pain and trauma suffered by the boy, because of the certain lifetime loss of foreskin function, and because of the violation of the child's human rights.

Questioning circumcision

The alleged Abrahamic covenant is found in the Pentateuch (Torah) book of Genesis, chapter 17. Reform Jews in Germany stated questioning circumcision in 1843.[6] Circumcision today is being questioned for several reasons.[7] The practice of circumcision conflicts with many other Jewish values. Moreover, textual criticism indicates that this chapter appears to be a later insertion into the text of this Hebrew book.[8]

A non-cutting alternative to Brit Milah, usually called Brit Shalom, is gaining in popularity.[9] Mark D. Reiss, M.D.[a 1], has sponsored the Mark D. Reiss, M.D. Inclusion Directory, where more information on Brit Shalom may be found.

Hirsch et al. (1906) state, "An uncircumcised Jew is a full Jew by birth.[6]

Wine (1988) argued that the medical aspects (surgical excision of functional penile tissue) should be separated from the naming ceremony.[10]

There appears to be increasing sentiment for reform of ritual circumcision practice with several organizations, such as Society for Humanistic Judaism, Association of Humanistic Rabbis, and Ritualwell proposing changes. Bruchim was founded in 2021 by Lisa Braver Moss and Rebecca Wald with a goal of making non-circumcision acceptable in American synagogues.

See also

External links


  1. REFweb Doctor of Medicine, Wikipedia. Retrieved 14 June 2021. In the United Kingdom, Ireland and some Commonwealth countries, the abbreviation MD is common.


  1. a b REFjournal Kehler K. Judaism. Jewish Encyclopedia. 1906; Retrieved 4 May 2022.
  2. REFweb Judaism, Merriam-Webster. Retrieved 2 May 2022.
  3. a b REFweb Gaster TH. Judaism, Britannica. Retrieved 1 May 2022.
  4. REFweb Rogador, Christine (30 May 2021). Star Of David Symbol – History And Meaning, Symbols Archive. Retrieved 1 May 2022.
  5. REFweb (15 May 2020). rabbi, Britannica. Retrieved 1 May 2022.
  6. a b c REFjournal Hirsch EG, Kohler, Kaufmann, Jacobs, Joseph, Friedenwald, Aaron, Broydé, Isaac. Circumcision. Jewish Encyclopedia. 1906; Retrieved 4 May 2022.
  7. REFbook Goldman R (2012): Questioning Circumcision: A Jewish Perspective. 144 pages. Vanguard Publications. ISBN 978-0964489561. Retrieved 1 May 2022.
  8. REFbook Glick LB (2005): Chapter One, in: Marked in Your Flesh: Circumcision from Ancient Judea to Modern America. Edition: 1st. Oxford University Press. Pp. 15-18. ISBN 9780195176742. Retrieved 8 May 2022.
  9. REFnews Ahituv, Netta (14 June 2021)."Even in Israel, More and More Parents Choose Not to Circumcise Their Sons", Haaretz. Retrieved 2 May 2022.
    Quote: The survey also found that nearly a third of the parents would prefer to forgo circumcision but nevertheless have it done for social reasons ‏(16.6 percent‏), health reasons ‏(10.4 percent‏) and because it is important for the grandparents ‏(2.1 percent‏).
  10. REFweb Wine ST (2022). Bibliography, Sherwin T. Wine. Retrieved 11 February 2024.