Philosophy of Mitzvot

Sons of Aaron - Do it "My Way" - Why are there so many rules in Judaism? Can’t I just “do it my way?” More »
Learning and not Observing - I am a woman who was a Reform Jew my entire life and have begun Jewish learning over the past few years. Now that I am learning, I am feeling bad about some things I’m not observing. For example, I… More »
Kosher Bacon Bits - I have recently begun keeping kosher, and had a philosophical debate with a friend who does not. I want to use soybean "sausage and bacon" products that have kosher symbols, because as long as they're kosher, why not? But my… More »
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Principles

Travel Agent – Booking Shabbat Travel for Jews - I work in the travel industry and regularly book flights and reservations for customers. Many of them I’m sure are Jewish but not religious. If a Jew wants to book a flight on Shabbat, am I allowed to do it… More »
Divorcee – Husband’s Customs - I am divorced now. Do I still have to follow the customs of my ex-husband – such as not eating out on Passover? More »
Ba’al Teshuva, Convert – Which Customs to Follow? - My parents are Jewish but I grew up with almost no observance in my home. In fact, I would have to go back several generations to find religious ancestors. I began becoming religious as an adult and I have generally… More »
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613 Mitzvot

613 Mitzvot - What is the earliest reference to the Torah having 613 mitzvot? Where does this list come from? This is a matter of dispute here in South Africa, where a radio talk show host made some inaccurate statements about Judaism by… More »
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Punishments

Cruelty of Capital Punishment - I have heard people claim that the death penalty of the Torah was barbaric, and man has progressed since that time, which is why it is no longer done. It doesn’t sound right to me that laws of the Torah… More »
Hitler's Level of Accountability - I have been wondering about the status of someone like Hitler who did not actually kill the 6 million with his own hands, but ordered it done by his emissaries. Does murder by his agents put him into the category… More »
Rape - I was reading in an online forum that Judaism advocates that a rapist marry his victim. This sounds so backward and oppressive, and difficult to reconcile with the compassionate Judaism that I know and love. Is what I read accurate? More »
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