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Problem with Pope's comments

Reader comment on item: Pope Benedict XVI and the Koran

Submitted by J Pincus (United States), Jan 17, 2006 at 21:50

The Pope seemed to say, according the second-hand remark reported in Dr. Pipes' article, that Jews believe that the transmission of their holy texts was through intermediaries. As such, each book is capable of being changed through time by human beings. The Pope, if he really believes this, is wrong.

Normative Judaism states that the Torah is the word of God and not the transmission of information through human beings. That includes the content of the Mishnayos. The Torah and the Talmud indicate, both directly and indirectly, that the law is now in our hands to interpret and apply. There are limitations on our ability to interpret, but we are still commanded to do so. It's somewhat synonymous with a constitutional lawyer writing a brief based on the Constitution as it is, with no thought to modifying it to meet his argument.

Does Islam have a similar tradition? If it does, what have been the barriers to acceptance of those interpretations and redactions? Is it cultural?


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