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The Integrity Of The Rabbinic Law Of Purity (Mishnah Teharot)

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Chapter Summary

The diverse laws codes, from Scripture through the Mishnah, produced by various communities of Judaism in ancient times share facts in common but use them, each in its own system and setting. The context in which ancient facts are utilized in a later document permits us to see how enduring data serve successive Judaic systems and affords perspective on the entire cultural and religious composite comprised by those Judaisms. When the rabbinic sages wished in Mishnah. Teharot to organize a basic category called puritiesTeharot in Hebrewas was their way, they identified data that, for reasons they discerned, cohered. These data were turned from rules into exemplifications of encompassing and systemic principles, with the result that through a repertoire of concrete laws, the sages produced a remarkably abstract statement of natural philosophy, a work of coherence and integrity.

Keywords: ancient Judaism; cultic purity; mishnah. Teharot; Rabbinic law



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