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soc.culture.jewish FAQ: Torah and Halachic Authority (3/12)
Section - Question 4.1: What is "Halacha?" How is it determined?

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                                  Answer:
   
   Halacha means "Way" or "Path". Halacha is the application of the Law
   (Torah) to everyday living.
   
   The traditional viewpoint is that Halacha should be decided by those
   who are most knowledgable in all aspects of Jewish law. Since the
   Halacha of each generation is decided by its greatest Torah scholars,
   and the Torah doesn't change, there is usually little change in the
   Halacha from one generation to the next. The development of Halacha is
   most evident when new situations arise for which rulings must be made,
   such as the destruction of the Temple, the development of electricity,
   and the increasing complexity of modern food processing technology.
   
   Since the non-traditional viewpoint is that the the Torah itself was
   written by people, both the interpretation of the Law and its
   application are re-evaluated in each generation, using the
   interpretations of the past to serve primarily as non-binding guidance
   in how to continue this process.
   
   Both viewpoints encourages all Jews to study halacha, and apply it to
   their daily lives in order that they be brought closer to G-d.

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Top Document: soc.culture.jewish FAQ: Torah and Halachic Authority (3/12)
Previous Document: Question 3.48: What is the Mekhilta on Deuteronomy?
Next Document: Question 4.2: Traditionally, what are the levels of halacha?

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Last Update March 27 2014 @ 02:11 PM