Worship of foreign deities, one of the three cardinal sins.

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5
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4answers
988 views

Is “siman tov u'mazal tov” a halachically problematic phrase?

Literally translated, this is what is commonly said in the Jewish community, upon hearing very good news (typically life-cycle events as such as engagement, marriage, birth). "A good sign and a good ...
2
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1answer
53 views

Cherubim & Ark of Cov. description paralleled to (or inspired by) Egyptians?

I'm wondering why the cherubim atop the Ark of the Covenant, as referenced in Exodus 25:20, 1 Kings 8:6, 2 Chronicles 5:7, etc., are explicitly described with outstretched wings? I believe that ...
5
votes
1answer
137 views

Aesthetics and chukoseihem

In general, there is a prohibition to adopt practices from other cultures (See, e.g., Maimonides' Laws of Idolatry 11; see also here) if there is no clear, reasonable, non-idolatrous justification for ...
2
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1answer
95 views

Working for a company that sells a product for idol-worship institutions?

This is similar to a question I saw on here about working for a idolatrous organization. The difference here is, the person isn't working for the institution directly, but rather works for a company ...
4
votes
1answer
119 views

Asking a Human to Interecede with God

Rambam writes (Hil. Avoda Zara) that it is forbidden to utilize any entity as an intermediary between oneself and God (more accurately that one who does so is a heretic who loses his share in the ...
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1answer
77 views

Abram's worship of El Elyon [closed]

In Genesis 14:18-20 Abram recognizes the deity El Elyon of the Jebusite monarch Melchizedek. Some scholars have investigated into the meaning of this name El Elyon and propose that it actually ...
7
votes
2answers
266 views

Pokemon Go and Churches

This is intended to be an academic question. All practical halachic questions should be decided based on a consult with your local Orthodox rabbi. Pokemon Go is a new game for smartphones where you ...
2
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4answers
415 views

Is one permitted to study other religions?

Is one allowed to study other religions? If not, how is one supposed to know that Judaism is correct? If yes, is such study encouraged?
1
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1answer
201 views

Unkosher sheitel's / wigs?

Is it permissible for a married woman to wear a wig if the hair was sacrificed to an idol or foreign deity? There is a temple in India, dubbed the "Richest temple in the World" where pilgrims shave ...
15
votes
4answers
1k views

May a Jew be a Freemason?

According to what I've been told by several people who have inquired of "practicing" (is that the right word?) Freemasons, and supported by Wikipedia, "Freemasonry explicitly and openly states that it ...
0
votes
0answers
29 views

Is a Jew allowed to sell tours to visit ruins of pagan temples? What if they're part of a bigger tour package?

I'm curious if Jews are allowed to sell tours to places like the Angkor Wat temples, which were places of idol worship (and apparently still have monks wandering about, presumably for some religious ...
2
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1answer
57 views

Is there a blessing for destroying avodah zarah?

It is a positive commandment to destroy, preferably by fire, false deities. It is a positive commandment to destroy false deities, all their accessories, and everything that is made for their ...
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2answers
2k views

What to do with the Cross on the Chess King?

Many (perhaps most) Chess sets come with a King piece that has a cross on the top of it. Is there any problem with owning or using such a chess set? Should one break off the cross?
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votes
5answers
1k views

Should the Christian cross be seen as an idol?

As Christianity is Avodah Zarah, is a Christian cross which people kiss, pay respect to, and face toward when praying, considered to be an idol? Here is a brief excerpt from a scholarly Christian ...
7
votes
3answers
186 views

May Jews create sculpture, and under what restrictions?

I do not know if a realistic or abstract freestanding or hanging sculpture of any creature as art (for a museum or store) is permitted me to create or for Jews to view, or whether it would be ...
4
votes
3answers
504 views

Halachic status of Sikhism as Avoda Zara

Are there any sources that explicitly discuss the halachic status of Sikhism regarding to what extent it follows the Noahide laws, and if it is considered avoda zara or shittuf?
33
votes
13answers
8k views

Is Christianity Avodah Zara?

It is commonly accepted that Islam is not Avodah Zarah (idolatry) since Islam has a clear monotheistic theology with a belief in Allah that parallels our view of "kail" or Hashem. It is even ...
1
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0answers
18 views

Does the first Noahide Law prohibit idolatry or being an atheist? [duplicate]

Does the first Law of Noach prohibit idolatry or being an atheist, or both? In some formulations of the 7 Noahide Laws, the first law is given as "Denying G-d" (or similar). In others, it is ...
4
votes
2answers
88 views

What will happen to all other religions places of worship and scripture when moshiach comes

Does it say anywhere in Jewish scripture what will happen to the places of worship and religious scripture of all the other religions of the world when moshiach comes?
1
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1answer
66 views

Would a Jew be allowed to partake in pudding that symbolized a divinity

Would a Jew be allowed to partake in the festivities of Nowruz which involves 7 haft-seen, 7 different foods that each symbolize a different divinity?
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0answers
70 views

How to disprove J witness [duplicate]

So someone I know (former Jew now Jehovah witness) has been debating me and my brother, and each time we school this person on something, they stop talking. They claim that the Oral Tradition is false ...
3
votes
0answers
31 views

Atonement and the Death Penalty

"Ordinary murderers are allowed to achieve atonement for their souls in their execution. Only especially vile murderers - such as a false witness whose lies are discovered after the person who was ...
11
votes
3answers
268 views

Does Maimonides Allow Prayer to Angels?

In his Mishna Commentary to Sanhedrin 10:1 Maimonides lists as his 5th principle the prohibition to pray to an angel even as an intermediary. He counts this in his enumeration of his 13 principles in ...
6
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0answers
67 views

Are Tibetan Prayer Flags a form of Avodah Zara?

I recently received in the mail a set of prayer flags as part of a mailer, which got me thinking (and researching). Without a question, using the flags normally would be an act of darchei emorie or ...
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votes
1answer
87 views

How could the Jews have been sure the Golden Calf wasn't actually G-d?

This probably sounds like a ridiculous question, but in all seriousness, many Jews lost their lives in the aftermath of the worship of the Golden Calf (Shemos 32:27-28). While I understand only 40 ...
5
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3answers
90 views

Why didn't Rochel just destroy the idols?

Instead of stealing Lavan's idols (Bereshis 31:19), why didn't she merely destroy them?
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3answers
88 views

Who are considered “avot” who worshipped idols?

In the beginning of the Amidah, we identify "avoteinu" our forefathers and we list them as Avraham, Yitzchak and Yaakov. But in the Haggadah, we begin by saying "Mitchilah, ovdei avodah zara hayu ...
18
votes
4answers
1k views

Why isn't the Kabbalistic doctrine of Sefirot considered Shittuf if the Christian Trinity is?

From the answers to this question it seems that most if not all Jewish sources treat Trinitarian Christianity (in particular, their doctrine of the Trinity) as either Shittuf or outright Avoda Zara, ...
16
votes
3answers
1k views

Is a Jew allowed to be knighted? Problem with kneeling?

Is there any halachik problem with going through the knighting (or Damehood for women) process of kneeling etc? The current ceremony does not contain many of the Christian or pagan overtones of the ...
4
votes
1answer
57 views

נשים דעתן קלה versus נזמי הזהב אשר באזניהם

The Mishna, Kidushin chapter 4: A man cannot be alone with two women, but one woman can be alone with two men. The Bavli thereon, 80 amud 2: What's the reason? A Mishna-explainer of the ...
0
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0answers
47 views

Are Jews allowed to use the expression “fingers crossed”?

Not to worship idols is one of the 10 commandments; according to a quick Google search "finger crossed" originates from either the Christian cross or other superstitious beliefs. Does this mean that ...
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0answers
49 views

Would an Islamic Bank Account be preferable to a Jew?

Islamic bank accounts do not involve interest or fees for loans of money and prevents the bank from investing your money in various questionable businesses, like the pork and sex industries. Would it ...
11
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2answers
402 views

Did all of Bnei Israel worship the golden calf?

When Prophet Moses went up to the mountain, did all the people end up worshiping the cow, or were there some who remained aloof? What happened to such people who did not become idolaters? Were they ...
1
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1answer
74 views

Are “dream catchers” considered to be avodah zarah?

Are "dream catchers" considered to be avodah zarah? Dreamcatcher: a small hoop containing a horsehair mesh, or a similar construction of string or yarn, decorated with feathers and beads, believed to ...
5
votes
1answer
146 views

Are there any halachic problems with visiting a secular museum?

When visiting a secular museum with paintings and sculptures from Egypt, Europe and Asia (usually influenced by idol worshipping ideas and if not that then elements of immodesty), are there any tips ...
0
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1answer
51 views

Where is it written that anger is like idolatry

There is a gemara that says that anger is like a form of idolatry. Which gemara says this and where in the gemara is it written?
21
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5answers
3k views

Is practicing Yoga against Torah?

What does Halacha and Halachic Authorities have to say about the permissibility of a Jew practicing Yoga? Is it Avodah Zarah? If it is problematic, are there methods of doing it where it would be ...
1
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0answers
58 views

Are there Jewish sources regarding this degradation of the Jews of Prague

Are there Jewish sources regarding this degradation of the Jews of Prague? (Allowing it, protesting it (they should have been killed and not do it)) From https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/...
4
votes
1answer
150 views

Apostate Jew performing mitzvahs

It has been discussed many times on this site that a non-Jew may not observe Shabbat (in addition to various other mitzvot that are prohibited to non-Jews). We have also seen that a Jew who renounces ...
3
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0answers
69 views

Is a Jew allowed to collect royalties on a song that glorifies Jesus?

You may not, offhand recognize the name Norman Greenbaum until you realize that he composed the One-Hit wonder song "Spirit in the Sky" first released in 1969, and played often on radio and other ...
1
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1answer
107 views

where if anywhere, does rashi refer to christianity as idolatry?

I remember hearing that rashi does not consider christianity idolatry. In researching it on google I have read here Isaac On Jewish and Christian Altars:Polemic and Exegesis in Rashi and the ... ...
4
votes
1answer
55 views

is idolatry one of the noachide laws? there is a discrepancy between websites

is idolatry one of the noachide laws? there is a discrepancy between websites. wikipedia says The seven Noahide laws as traditionally enumerated are: Do not deny God. Do not blaspheme God. Do not ...
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votes
2answers
60 views

Is idolatry and adultery the same thing, spiritually? [closed]

Is idolatry and adultery the same thing, spiritually? Can you say that if you do adultery you are worshiping the zodiac? (maybe that was not your intention, but that's the reality?) "They sacrifice ...
8
votes
6answers
943 views

How to Resolve Kiddush Levana and Celestial Worship, (Avodas Kochavim)?

In general Kiddush Lavanah has always seemed to me to be akin to "Avodas Kochavim" - so does anyone know of a satisfying answer that works with Occam's razor? More specifically: We say Just as I can ...
4
votes
1answer
223 views

If a food product has a heretical/idol worship image on it, and a hechsher as well, may one partake of it?

There is this food/drink product that has a Christian symbol and other associated things, and yet there is also a hechsher. Assuming the hechsher is accepted to be reliable etc., may one consume (i....
19
votes
5answers
985 views

Did the Rambam believe in magic?

If you read through Chapter 11 of the Rambam's laws on Idol Worship, you'll see what seems to be the Rambam forbidding anything that even resembles magic, all while calling such practices foolish and ...
5
votes
1answer
104 views

Is Exodus 20:4 a command about icons or idols?

When The Lord says, "Do not make for yourself an image," does he mean an image for the purpose of worship, that is an idol, or any image whatsoever, such as the depiction of a narrative or a ...
1
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0answers
41 views

Is it prohibited to say a bracha near an idol?

In the trades, some times home owners will have statues of Buddha or catholic stuff like saints and such. I've heard some rule idolatry today is not the same as before. Are there any prohibitions ...
2
votes
1answer
66 views

Shovavim and idolatry

The initials of parashat Shemot to Mishpatim form the word Shovavim, which connect this period to Teshuva based on the verse of Jeremia 3:14 where the word Shovavim occurs. I also read this is a ...
3
votes
1answer
72 views

Is one allowed to visit a temple or place of worship of a religion no longer in existence?

There seems to be an issue with visiting a house of worship or temple or possibly a cemetery of other religions. Where does that come from and what are the parameters of any interdiction? Assuming ...