Theology of the Chinese Jews, 10001850 (BOK)

Jordan Paper

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A thousand years ago, the Chinese government invited merchants from one of the Chinese port synagogue communities to the capital, Kaifeng. The merchants settled there and the community prospered. Over many centuries, with government support, the Kaifeng Jews built and rebuilt their synagogue, which became perhaps the world's largest. Some studied for the rabbinate; others prepared for civil service examinations, leading to a disproportionate number of Jewish government officials. While continuing orthodox Jewish practices, they added rituals honouring their parents and the patriarchs in accord with Chinese customs. Thus they remained fully Jewish while harmonising with the family-centred religion of China. Based on the theology they brought from Baghdad, the Chinese Jews developed a theology that bypassed the horrors of Christian persecution and expressed it in literary Chinese using Daoist terminology. This book traces the history of Jews in China and explores how their theology's focus on love, rather than on the fear of a non-anthropomorphic God, may speak to contemporary liberal Jews. By the mid-eighteenth century, cut off from Judaism elsewhere for two centuries, their synagogue destroyed by a major flood, their community impoverished and dispersed by a civil war that devastated Kaifeng their Judaism became defunct. It is co-published with the Centre for Studies in Religion and Society.


Språk Engelsk Engelsk Innbinding Innbundet
Utgitt 2012 Forfatter Jordan Paper
ISBN 9781554583720
Antall sider 175 Dimensjoner 23cm x 15,5cm x 1,5cm
Vekt 305 gram