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Orthodox Judaism

Orthodox Judaism. Traditional Judaism. The term ‘Orthodoxy’ was first applied in Judaism in 1795 as a distinction between those who accepted the written and oral law as divinely inspired and those who identified with the Reform movement. The Orthodox believe that they are the sole practitioners of the Jewish religious tradition and regard non-Orthodox rabbis as laypeople and non-Orthodox proselytes as gentiles. Orthodoxy involves submission to the demands of halakhah as enshrined in the written and oral law and in the subsequent codes (see CODIFICATIONS OF LAW) and responsa. Notable institutions and organizations are or have been: Torah Umesorah, which organized schools and yeshivot from 1944 onward; the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America (which certifies, internationally, reliable kosher food); Yeshiva University and the Hebrew Theological College in Chicago; the Union of Orthodox Rabbis and the Rabbinical Alliance.

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