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      • In general, Orthodox Jews are followers who believe in a fairly strict observance of the rules and teachings of the Torah, as compared to the more liberal practices of members of modern Reform Judaism. Within the group known as Orthodox Jews, however, there are degrees of conservatism.
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  2. Modern Orthodox Jews are sometimes indistinguishable in their dress from general society, although they, too, wear kippahs and tzitzit; additionally, on Shabbat, Modern Orthodox men wear suits (or at least a dress shirt) and dress pants, while women wear fancier dresses or blouses. Orthodox Jews also follow the laws of negiah, which means touch ...

  3. Jews and Orthodox Jewish culture - A Cultural Profile on Jewish Clothing, traditions, beliefs and practices Orthodox Jewish Culture, Lifestyle, Traditions and Customs Learn and get acquainted with the unique Orthodox Jewish Culture, get to know their dress style, education, views on life and more

  4. Orthodox Judaism views itself as the continuation of the beliefs and practices of normative Judaism, as accepted by the Jewish nation at Mt. Sinai and codified in successive generations in an ongoing process that continues to this day. Orthodox Judaism believes that both the Written and Oral Torah are of divine origin, and represent the word of ...

    • Orthodox Demographics
    • Orthodox History
    • Diversity Within Orthodoxy

    Approximately 10 percent of American Jews identify as Orthodox according to Pew — fewer than Reform and Conservative— however they tend on average to be younger and have larger families, which has led some to conclude that they will represent a growing share of the American Jewish community in the years to come. Approximately 21 percent of Israeli Jews are Orthodox, according to a 2016 Pew study, though non-Orthodox religious movements are less widespread in Israel than they are in the United States. Though it is by far the smallest grouping within American Judaism, Orthodoxy is demographically strong. According to a 2015 Pew analysis, Orthodox Jews are younger on average than the broader Jewish community, with roughly a quarter between the ages of 18 and 29 (32 percent for ultra-Orthodox), compared to 17 percent of Reform Jews and 12 percent of Conservative Jews. They tend to have more children — 4.1 on average for Orthodox Jews between the ages of 40-59 compared to 1.7 for all Jew...

    The term Orthodox came to be applied to a more traditionalist attitude toward Jewish practice only in the 19th century, when more liberal approaches to Judaism emerged. The term itself came from Christianity, where it was used to describe faithfulness to the creeds of the early church. In the Jewish context, the term came into common use only in response to the introduction of Reform Judaism, which rejected the divine origins of the Torah and denied the obligatory nature of Jewish ritual observance. Samson Raphael Hirsch, a leading 19th-century German Orthodox rabbi and one of the chief opponents of the emergent Reform movement at that time, wrote in 1854: “It was not ‘Orthodox’ Jews who introduced the word ‘orthodox’ into Jewish discussion. It was the modern ‘progressive’ Jews who first applied the name to ‘old,’ ‘backward’ Jews as a derogatory term. This name was … resented by ‘old’ Jews. And rightfully so.” Eventually, the term came to be embraced by the traditionalists as an ind...

    Today, Orthodox Judaism encompasses a vast terrain of religious outlook and practice. Some 62 percent of American Orthodox Jews identify as ultra-Orthodox (haredi), a group whose adherents are typically marked by their distinctive black hats (for men) and scrupulously modest attire (for women). Ultra-Orthodox Jews are the most stringent in their commitment to Jewish law and tend to have the lowest levels of interaction with the wider non-Jewish society. They can be further subdivided into Hasidic Jews, heirs of the spiritual revivalist movement that began in Eastern Europe in the 18th century that emphasizes Jewish mysticism and communion with the divine, and Yeshivish (sometimes Litvish), which emphasizes the intellectual aspects of Jewish life, particularly rigorous Talmud Pronounced: TALL-mud, Origin: Hebrew, the set of teachings and commentaries on the Torah that form the basis for Jewish law. Comprised of the Mishnah and the Gemara, it contains the opinions of thousands of rabb...

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