Other religions based on the Torah

We’re are an egalitarian community that loves Torah Lishma – תורה לשמה – study for it’s own sake. We’re one of the few places where Jews can discuss Torah, Mishnah, Midrash, etc. without partisan politics or fundamentalism.  Think Open Orthodoxy, Conservative Judaism, Havurah movement, and the friendly-to-tradition wing of Reform.  Click here to see our Facebook group. Join in the conversations!


Here is a family tree of religions that claim to be descended from the ancient Israelites and the Torah. What we call Judaism is only a tiny slice of this large family tree.

We see that the Torah itself, out of context, does not lead exclusively to Judaism. Why not? Judaism is based on the Hebrew Bible read through the lens of Judaism’s oral law (Torah she-be’al peh תורה שבעל פה). How much of the Oral Law was given at Sinai is up for debate, even in rabbinic literature. But all forms of Judaism agree that the oral Torah is what makes Judaism, Judaism. Without it, we end up with any of the hundreds of other faiths shown here.

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Инфографика “ДЕРЕВО МИРОВЫХ РЕЛИГИЙ” – The World Religions Tree Infographics . 

This infographic is from a project created by Dzvenislavy Novakivsky incooperation with the Kyiv-Mohyla Business School, at funki.com.ua

To look more specifically at the branches of Judaism, and closely related offshoots, see https://merrimackvalleyhavurah.wordpress.com/about/denominations/