Understanding the Jewish Religion: Important and Common Practices


24 May 2019


Jewish Religion

Judaism is a religion that focuses much more on deeds of individuals, rather than beliefs. It’s also called a practice, rather than just a religion.

Since Judaism is a set of practices, many refer to it as a Way of Life. Those who aren’t familiar with Jewish believes and practices often don’t understand how everything works.

For those who are interested in learning more, they can find some helpful and enlightening information about this religion here. Keep reading to learn more.

Mitzvot: Religious Act or Commandment:

Since WWII, the population of American Jewish individuals has grown significantly. There’s also information about Jewish practices available at KehilatHaNahar.org; however, learning some basic or common principles first can be beneficial.

The practices of Judaism, especially when they are used as vehicles to connect to God, are officially called mitzvot. This is the plural of the mitzvah, which is a word more people are familiar with.

The word mitzvah actually means a religious act or commandment. It consists of both ethical acts and ritual, and they always follow the codifications of the principles outlined in the Torah.

There are some practices that are under the umbrella category minhag (custom). An example of this is wearing the head covering (yarmulke or kippah).

The most well-known mitzvot are the “Decalogue” or the “Ten Commandments.” The Bible never actually refers to these particularly as commandments. The thought behind this is because these are extremely fundamental and basic to the community.

The ten principles, when numbered based on Jewish tradition, actually differ a bit from the Christian numbering.

Ethical Behavior: 

Ethical behavior principles that are elaborated by Jewish thinkers typically start with assumptions related to God along with the expectations God has for Jews, and generally human beings as a whole. This often makes it challenging to separate the quest for holiness from ethical behavior.

While this is true, the Jewish literary tradition offers several works that effectively explore these underlying principles of ethics and that provide detailed explorations of various interpersonal ethics.


Leviticus 18:2 calls on the children of Israel to be holy. The concept of kedushah (holiness) is considered a theological concept.

Specifically, it refers to the quest to live in a manner that brings individuals or that emulates the goal to contact the realm of the divine and the realm of existence that goes beyond what is considered verifiable and objective.

The actual act of living a life of kedushah is considered a practical matter. It means that ideals related to generating codes of behavior, divinity, and alignment are identified and used to bring individuals into harmony with those specific ideals. There are many Jewish thinkers that have provide many suggestions on how to accomplish this, which often goes beyond the “letter” of Jewish law.

Understanding the Jewish Religion:

As anyone can see, there is complicated concept within the Jewish religion that may take time and practice to fully understand. However, for those who live and practice this way of life, it isn’t complicated. In fact, they considerate second nature.

For those thinking about converting to Judaism, getting to know more about religion is important. It can help them better understand if this is something they agree with and believe that they can adhere to or follow now and in the future.

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Prayer Beads

Uses and History of Prayer Beads in Various Traditions

You can find prayer beads in vast religions and cultures all over the world. The universal prayer items serve mainstream work in religions such as Hinduism, Islam, Christianity, Sikhism, Judaism, and Baha I faith. They are solely used to recite prayers, devotions, and chants. You can understand it with an example- Misbah and dhikr in Islam, and rosary in Catholicism. Countries such as turkey and Greece make use of Prayer Beads so as to relieve stress, tension, and passing time. Prayer beads are constructed through strings and beads thus the creation of a smooth beaded necklace is possible. Nearly all religions and traditions make use of the same typical style. They are fingered one by one in an automatic manner with the least effort. This allows the supporter to pay full attention without any distraction. You can find some of these through holy art nowadays. History of the Prayer Beads: The original exact of the prayer beads in unknown however in the late 500 BC it is said that Hindu follower in India makes use of it. It is whispered in the air that Buddhist followers invented it and later it got borrowed by Hinduism. You can see its evidence in the 3rd century BC a statue of a man holding beads. The concept of prayer bead got aired to the Middle East, China, and Japan from India. Originally it has its foot in Hinduism religion as well as tradition such as Japa Mala. Deity or mantra is termed as Japa and mala implies garland or wreath. In Muslim people call it Sufi, Tasbih, or Misbah. Worry beads are popularly known as prayer beads in Greece. Practitioners of Catholics make use of it in early tradition. Structure and style of prayer beads: The total number of beads found in a single string depends on usage and religion. For example, in Hindus and Hindus and Buddhists, the Japa mala has around 108 beads- 27 beads respectively which mean around 4 counts while in Islam, the Misabah could have 99 or 33 beads. 108 beads prayer beads are owned by the Sikh and the Baha'i prayer bead contains 95 – 19 beads with addition 5 beads. The rosary of Roman Catholic has 59 beads. The Orthodox Christians don’t have any prayer beads however it has knotted prayer rope. The rope is popularly known as Komboskini or chotki. In general, there are around 50- 33 knots in all chotki versions. In the 1980s, rev. Lynn Bauman introduced the rosary for Anglican. It has 33 beads. Worry bead is also known as greek Komboloi. It can be used for relaxation purposes and stress relief. What is the use of prayer bead in religion? Traditional prayer beads got made or constructed through strings with similar seeds, knots, and sized beads. Some of the prayer beads got made through crushed rose petals.  It is generally a way of keeping track of prayer and recording. It is an important factor so as to keep the count of religion with symbolic structure. There are structured prayers beside the other bead types, they are symbolized as commitment. Interconnectedness among people can be symbolized via a circular bead. Each religion has its own style that is unique and thus you need to understand why it is so. Muslim prayer beads: At the core of Islamic tradition and religion, prayer beads are used for ages. It is well known that the concept of using a prayer bead is borrowed or taken from the Hindus religion. The bead could have 99 beads or 33 beads with one lead bead. The prayer bead represents or symbolizes each of the beads in name of Allah. The prayer bead string is called as misbaha or masbaha that implies “to praise”. It is basically made through date pits or wood from Mecca. They are even crafted using the olive seeds, ivory, plastic, amber, pearl, and stones. Earlier they are made using the pebbles and stones. Hindus Prayer beads: In 500 BC, the prayer bead origin can be tracked in Hinduisms. It is popularly known as “JAPA MALA” and has 108 beads. The prayer beads are used mainly for counting during repeating specific Mantra, Reciting, or chanting. They are solely created through “Rudraksha seeds”. The most common material used is pearl and plastic. Christian Prayer beads: Roman Catholic makes use of prayer beads in Anglican Churches. Rosary got originated from the Latin word rose garden or rosarium. It has 59 beads and that counts can be done in a specific sequence. Judaism prayer beads: Judaism considers prayer beads as Pagan. They are known as “Tallit” and have specific knots. The white and blue silk of Tallit contains 5 and 4 knots respectively. Sikhism prayer beads: The Sikh devotee makes use of prayer beads in the name of Guru Granth Sahib. They also wear attire that suits the bead. The prayer bead can be worn around the wrists. The Baha I faith: The Baha I faith recite around 95 times a day. Prayer beads can be often used to assist requirements. It contains 95 beads. Pagan faiths: The followers of pagan faith began using the prayer bead. They can be used to worship, or spell casting. They are basically attributed to one subject. Relaxation prayer beads: In Turkey and Greece, you can see the prayer bead and this helps in relaxing, relieving stress, and pass time. It improves cognition as well as mental power. It can cure allergies, headaches, and head diseases. Conclusion: No matter which tradition you belong to, you can know about the various prayer beads available in the market. This will help you in understanding more about it, and how it can be used. It is an integral part of one’s life. It keeps the practitioner during the chanting. It thus serves them full devotion toward the religion and protects them from corruption and harm. The modern beads are available online and you can see it. They are purely made of natural materials that are used in olden times. This may include Choerospondias axillaris, vyjanti, precatorious, and afzelia species. Read Also: Everything You Need To Know About Healing Gemstones And Materials Health Benefits Of The Amber Teething Necklace


5 Tips for Turning Your Church Around

Recent years have seen a rapid decline in church attendance. One of the harsh facts of the current climate is that the institution has become all but irrelevant to many Americans, especially the younger generations, and so congregations have shrank. There are many reasons that church membership is down, and not all of them even relate directly to the clergy or to the church. One contributing factor is that Millennials and Gen-Zers are more averse to a commitment to any institution, including marriage and religion. However, another major factor is that America is becoming less religious as fewer people claim to have any religious affiliation. Ignoring these facts will do nothing to change the trends, but turning your church around isn't impossible. Read on to get some tips to help you revive your church and make it more durable. Here are 5 Tips for Turning Your Church Around: 1. Acknowledge that your church has a problem. As a church leader, you're probably accustomed to helping people through life's hardships. As a counselor and minister, you know that the first and most important step of solving a problem is admitting that there is one. You have to apply that same principle inwards, especially when it comes to turning your church around. It's equally important to be able to recognize the signs that your church is in trouble. One of the crucial signs that your church is trending downward is that you have a lack of young people in your congregation. Growth is important for the survival of any organization, and you can't grow without an infusion of youth. Also, if there is no talk of the church's direction and goals for the future, then it is going in the wrong direction. The goal shouldn't be to simply exist and maintain the status quo--you need to always have a vision for how to make it something greater. 2. Hire people with skills that can help your mission to grow. Even though the goal of your church isn't to make money, you need to approach turning it around with a business mindset. In business, you need to have the right personnel in place to facilitate growth, and you need to take the same business-like approach to revive your ministry. Growing your church should be a project with many steps and initiatives that you put forth with the goal of revitalizing the ministry. You should consider hiring a project manager who has successfully completed PMP certification training. A project management professional undergoes years of schooling to get their project management certification, or PMP certificate, and they specialize in planning, and in managing the funding of projects. You may even want to consider sponsoring one of your members for the PMP certification process as a way to facilitate growth from within your flock. By helping them get the credentials needed, through on-site project experience, they can quickly gain their own project management certification, and help you in return. The more qualified hands you have on deck, then the more ready your church will be to undertake the task of turning the ministry around. 3. Get the youth involved. One of the major issues facing churches around the United States is that young people are losing interest in church. If this trend continues, then from where will the clergy and church leaders of the future come? One way you can attract youth to your ministry is to give them responsibilities. Adolescents are on the cusp of adulthood, and the desire to have a role in shaping the institutions of which they're apart. Create programs specifically for the younger people in your church, and also empower them to give suggestions and spearhead small projects. 4. Encourage members to become leaders. One of the most important prerequisites for ministers to remember is that you can't build a ministry alone. If you want your members to become more engaged in church, then you need to get them active. One way to get members to become more interested in growing the ministry is to facilitate their personal spiritual growth. Creating a school of ministry for members who dream of someday wearing priest shirts is an excellent way to help your members grow, as well as attracting potential new members to step into the church for the first time. Put your credentials and years of experience in ministry to work by becoming a trainer for future ministers and leaders. 5. Get active in the community. One of the unfortunate trends in the U.S. is that people are beginning to feel like the church is irrelevant in modern society. One of the main reasons for that sentiment is that many churches are inactive in their community. If you want to revitalize your church, then community service is one of the best ways. Programs like neighborhood cleanups and food drives are excellent ways to ingratiate your church to the community through service. Read Also: Uses and History of Prayer Beads in Various Traditions

Carbon Capture Projects

10 Carbon Capture Projects Around the World

Carbon capture projects, and storage projects, abbreviated as (CCS projects), is a climate change mitigation process whereby CO2 emitted into the atmosphere from industrial processes or power plants is recycled. The availability of carbon capture enables the continued use of fossil fuel in generating electricity as it is possible to reduce carbon emissions. For us to achieve a significant reduction in carbon emission, large amounts of CO2 need to be captured and stored. CO2 gas emission is the leading cause of global warming as it brings about the greenhouse effect, which negatively impacts the environment. Globally there are three main carbon capture methods which are: post-combustion, oxy-combustion, and pre-combustion. These capture methods are applicable in various industrial processes like cement and clinker production, water desalination, oil and gas refinery, iron, and steel industry. Don't forget to reach out, why we should care about the environment. Drawing from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 2020 data, carbon capture helped capture and store about 40 million tonnes of CO2 globally from power plants and industrial facilities. In order to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050, the carbon capture and storage rate should increase at least 100 folds. Many countries in the world embrace carbon capture like Australia, China, Korea, Algeria, Norway, Netherlands, the Middle East, New Zealand, and the most being in the United States and Europe. Most of the carbon dioxide captured and stored in natural gas plants, iron and steel industries, or coal fields is transported via pipelines to oil fields and used in Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR). The wise decision for oil and gas field owners is to consult with professionals with a vast knowledge of CO2 enhanced oil recovery. Consulting companies like Melzer Consulting offer their services to clients like oil producers, CO2 source companies, and research organizations. Some of the resources and projects include transmissive fracture detection, wettability, residual oil zones. CO2 EOR and C02 ROZ school. Carbon Capture Projects Around the World Let's explore some of the carbon capture and storage projects around the world: 1. Petrobras Lula, Brazil Lula oil field is one of the largest ultra-deepwater oil and gas producing fields in the Santos Basin. This oil field produces about a million barrels of oil per day as of 2019 and is expected to reach its peak by 2021. Since 2013, the oil and gas field has incorporated carbon capture; about 0.7 million tonnes of CO2 are recycled and used in enhanced oil recovery annually. 2. Boundary Dam, Saskatchewan, Canada The Boundary Dam is a coal-fired plant located in Estevan, Saskatchewan, Canada, and has six production units. The coal-fired plant was commissioned in 1959. In 2014, the Boundary Dam Power Station completed its carbon capture unit. The captured project used carbon for Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR). Installation of the carbon capture and storage equipment helped convert Unit 3 into a reliable producer of clean-base electricity in the province. The plant is responsible for capturing a million tonnes of CO2 emissions per year. 3. Petra Nova CCS project, Texas, US The WA Parish power station burns coal and gas. The plant has partially retrofitted post-combustion carbon capture equipment. This unit generates 240 MW and captures about 1.4 million tonnes of carbon per annum. The gas is transported via pipeline to West Ranch Oil Field and used for enhanced oil recovery. 4. Abu Dhabi CCS Project, United Arab Emirates Abu Dhabi is the pilot plant with commercial carbon capture and storage facilities in the iron and steel industry. Carbon dioxide is a by-product of the production of steel and iron metals. Instead of emitting the CO2 into the atmosphere, it is captured and transported via pipeline to the region's National Oil Company and used for EOR. Over 40% of the gas emitted proves helpful in crude oil production. 5. In Salah, Algeria Salah is an operational onshore gas plant that began its carbon dioxide stripping and storage back in 2004. The CO2 is captured and filtered during natural gas extraction. The plant was suspended in 2011 over concerns of possible leakage. The plant had stored about 3.5 million tonnes of CO2 in a saline aquifer. The site is currently valuable for monitoring, modeling, and verification for future storage. 6. Uthmaniyah Demonstration Project, Saudi Arabia The Uthmaniyah demonstration project was operational from 2015. Its primary purpose was to capture about 0.8 million tonnes of carbon dioxide released at the world’s largest oil field, Ghawar. The captured gas is transported via a 70km pipeline to the oil fields and used in EOR. 7. CNPC Jilin Oil Field, China The CNPC Jilin oil field was China’s first carbon capture project in Jilin province. The source of CO2 is a nearby gas field responsible for extracting about 22.55% of natural gas. The separated carbon dioxide is transported via pipeline and injected in EOR at the low-permeability oil field. So far, the project has injected over 1.1 million tonnes of carbon dioxide. 8. Quest, Alberta, Canada The Quest carbon capture project is a joint venture between Marathon, Shell, and Chevron Oil designed to capture about a million tonnes of CO2 gas. The hydrogen production facility was designed to convert bitumen from oil sands into synthetic crude oil. CO2 gas is a by-product in the hydrogen production process, and the unit captures, transports, and stores the gas in a deep saline aquifer. 9. Gorgon Injection Project, Australia The Gordon Project is one of the most significant natural gas projects in the world. As of 2020, the project produces an average of 2.1 billion cubic feet of natural gas. The carbon capture unit will capture about 3.3 million tonnes of CO2 stripped from the natural gas. The carbon dioxide is stored in a saline aquifer. 10. Sleipner, Norway Sleipner is an offshore gas field initiated in 1996. The CO2 separated from the natural gas is stored in the Utsira saline aquifer, about 800-1000m below the ocean floor. This large-sized reservoir accounts for about 600 billion tonnes of stored CO2. It is safe to say that carbon capture, utilization, and storage are being embraced by many countries globally. The acknowledgment of the importance of capture, removal, and storage of carbon leads to the launch of carbon capture projects around the world. With the help of new policies and carbon capture, the results may have a significant climate impact. Carbon Capture Efforts in the Future Although carbon capture technologies have yet to be deployed on a large scale, the number of projects under development across the world has been steadily increasing. This is due to a combination of greater private sector ambition and more supportive policies. However, we will need much greater investments and governmental assistance to successfully decarbonize by implementing CSS at the scale required. Read Also: The Effect of Climate Change on Human Health The Benefits of Solar Lighting in a Nutshell