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The Tanakh


What we call Tanakh |תנ"ך| is a library consisting of 24 books divided in three collections. This library was canonized by Jewish sages in the 1st century CE. It became sacred to Judaism and Christianity (although the latter has included in its canon some other Hebrew texts); they have also deeply influenced Islam.

The word "Tanakh" is an acrostic formed by the first Hebrew letters of each of the parts of this collection: T for Torah |תורה| (also know as the Pentateuch or the Five Books of Moses), N for Neviyim |נביאים| (Prophets) and K, Kh ou Ch for Ketuvim |כתובים| (Writings).

Today, thanks to the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, we know that the Israelites had many more books that might have been considered inspired by God. The sages of the 1st century, though, might have not been aware of all those different books, once they were hidden from the Romans in the caves of Qumran and vicinities; or else, they might have simply believed that those 24 were fundamental to organize the Jewish faith wherever the Jews lived in the diaspora. 

Thus, The Book became The Temple, The Book became The Land.

The Tanakh is also called Miqra |מקרא|, which means "reading" or "that which is read".

The "Teaching" is the first collection and it deals with the Creation of the Earth, of Mankind and the first families. The whole of the Tanakh tells the story of a God who wants to dwell among mankind and in this first collection the biblical author tells many stories concerning the difficulties encountered by God in this endeavor.

The Sacred Texts used in this website is graciously offered by Sefaria. It is an incredible endeavor with tons of texts of the Hebrews produced along the millenia.

Two chapter references are given in the Torah section:

  1. Torah chapters

  2. Haftarah chapters (readings of the Prophets that follow the reading of the Torah on shabbat)

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