The 613 Forgotten Commandments
We are living in chaotic times right now and so it is becoming more and more imperative that we make the crucial choice to walk a righteous and Godly path. Most people have only heard about the ten commandments. But did you know that according to the Jewish Tradition (Judaism) there are actually 613 commandments! These commandments are called “The 613 Mitzvot - Commandments - of the Torah.” There's also 613 Mitzvos according to Sefer Hamitzvot of Rambam.
The Jews refer to themselves as the chosen people. I never understood why this is until now. The Jews are the chosen people because they have chosen to follow all of the commandments that were given to them! That's it! It is not because they are egotistical and believe that they are better than everyone else. Although some Jews may think and act this may. However I would attribute this egotistical attitude moreso to an individual's personality as opposed to their religious affiliation. For instance, a person with the astrological sun sign of Leo may appear more egotistical and self absorbed than other astrological signs. But really...it depends on the individual, the environment they grew up in and the rest of their astrological chart along with other factors... But back to the topic at hand...
So there's 613 commandments in Judaism... but in reality, I've been told that there's over a thousand commandments that were handed down to the Jews. That's a topic for another article though! What's interesting is that most people have only heard about the 10 commandments, and unfortunately we are living in a world where most people don't even follow all 10 of these commandments. 10 compared to 613 is really nothing! Now, you don't necessarily have to follow all 613 commandments, but one should at least make an effort to follow more than 10!
Now technically I've been sworn to silence regarding divulging these commandments to the public, however, even if I shared all of the commandments with you this article would amount to over 25 pages...and even more pages with my commentary! So that's not going to work anyway! I don't know too many people who are willing to read through a 25 page or more article. But, I would like to share with you some of the commandments that I personally find to be quite interesting.
Now this list of commandments is a pretty comprehensive list that dates so far back that some of these commandments are a bit obscure and the language used may be somewhat difficult to understand. At least that's the case for me! These commandments are listed in categories. Some of these categories do not even seem to pertain to modern day society. They are somewhat outdated... But many of these commandments do still pertain to everyone even now in 2020! It's a fascinating list to say the very least. So I would like to share with you some simple and easy commandments on this list that have caught my attention.... Some of these commandments really resonate with me while others simply have me saying “Wow”~! At the very least these commandments will get you thinking...
The first commandment on the list is in the God section and is pretty simple, • “To know that God exists (Exodus 20:2; Deuteronomy 5:6).” This commandment is followed by “Love God” (Deuteronomy 6:5) and “To imitate His good and upright ways” (Deuteronomy 28:9). This all sounds pretty great to me! I believe in a higher power, feel love and unity with this higher power and I try my best to emulate this awesome energy.
• “Praying to God” (Exodus 23:25; Deuteronomy 6:13) and “Reciting grace after meals” (Deuteronomy 8:10) is also mentioned. Okay, so I will start reciting grace after my meals!
• “Not to stand by idly when a human life is in danger” (Leviticus 19:16). I do my best to help people. I would especially try to lend a hand if I felt someone's life was in danger.
• “Not to wrong any one in speech” (Leviticus 25:17). I do my best not to talk sh*t! Lol
• “Not to cherish hatred in one's heart” (Leviticus 19:17). .. Well, I used to carry hatred for certain people but thankfully I've learned to let that go. I am a much better person now for having done so!
• “Not to take revenge” (Leviticus 19:18) With scorpio moon and scorpio rising in my astrological chart I have a tendency to be vengeful, but thankfully I've woken up to the realization that vengeance is not mine. I let the spirit handle people's bad karma now!
• “Not to bear a grudge” (Leviticus 19:18) I've learned to forgive and move on!
• “Not to put any person to shame” (Leviticus 19:17) I don't have to put anyone to shame... people do this to themselves by acting inappropriately!
• “Not to refrain from maintaining a poor man and giving him what he needs” (Deuteronomy 15:7) I do my best to help the poor and I always give money to the homeless.
• “To give charity according to one's means” (Deuteronomy 15:11) I started a non profit so I could help provide charity to those in need.
• “To love the stranger” (Deuteronomy 10:19) There is no difference between a stranger and myself. We are all reflections of one another. If I love myself, which I do, then I can't help but love my reflection- which is everyone I come into contact with.
• “Not to wrong the stranger in speech” (Exodus 22:20) I try not to wrong anyone in speech.
• “Not to wrong the stranger in buying or selling” (Exodus 22:20) I personally own a few businesses. I provide services and sell products... I would never wrong anyone with my businesses! I would not want that done to me!
• “To honor the old and the wise” (Leviticus 19:32) I have great respect for my elders and the wise.
• “To honor father and mother” (Exodus 20:12) I have great love and respect for my father and mother. They may not be perfect, but I wouldn't be here right now if it wasn't for them... and they've helped me become who I am today. And I like who I am. So I'm grateful!
• “Not to indulge in familiarities with relatives, such as kissing, embracing, winking which may lead to incest ” (Leviticus 18:6) Hell no lol!
• “That a woman shall not have intercourse with a beast” (Leviticus 18:23)
I love my cats... but not that much! Ha Ha!
• “Not to castrate the male of any species; neither a man, nor a domestic or wild beast, nor a fowl” (Leviticus 22:24) Ahh, I did get my cat Felix neutered! But I personally didn't do the neutering. The vet did! So am I off the hook?
• “To be fruitful and multiply” (Genesis 1:28) Well, I haven't multiplied yet... but one of these days that will happen perhaps!
• “Not to commit sodomy with a male” (Leviticus 18:22) I've always been very open minded and non judgmental when it comes to an individual's sexuality and sexual preferences. I think people should do as they please as long as it's consensual. But it's very interesting that this is mentioned in the commandments. Perhaps it has something to do with the previous commandment “To be fruitful and multiply (Genesis 1:28)”. Two men engaging in sexual relations together or two women engaging in sexual relations together are technically unable to multiply! So that may have been the big concern!
• “Not to have intercourse with a beast” (Leviticus 18:23) Yeah, I think we just covered this one! I love my cats but not in that way! Ha ha!
• “Not to eat the flesh of unclean beasts” (Leviticus 11:4) Any animal that "chews the cud" and has a completely split hoof is ritually clean, but those animals that only chew the cud or only have cloven hooves are unclean. Four animals are specifically impure: 1) camel, 2) hyrax, 3) hare (that's a rabbit) and 4) pig.
• “Not to eat unclean fish” (Leviticus 11:11) Anything residing in "the waters" (which Leviticus specifies as being the seas and rivers) is ritually clean if it has both fins and scales. So you can't eat eel, lamprey, hagfish, lancelet; crustaceans: lobster, crab, prawn, shrimp, barnacle; molluscs: squid, octopus, oyster, periwinkle, sea cucumbers, jellyfish; cetaceans: dolphins, whales; crocodilians: alligators, crocodile, sea turtles, sea snakes and all amphibians!
• “Not to eat a worm found in fruit” (Leviticus 11:41) Well, if I was a worm and someone found me in a fruit I sure wouldn't want to be eaten! Can't a worm dine in peace?
• “Not to eat the flesh of a beast that died of itself”(Deuteronomy 14:21) Yaaa, I'm not much into roadkill myself!
• “Not to eat blood” (Leviticus 7:26) I'm not a vampire... Although I did party all night long and slept through many days when I was younger!
• “Not to eat or drink like a glutton or a drunkard” (not to rebel against father or mother) (Leviticus 19:26; Deuteronomy 21:20) I really do love food! I've had to get that under control. As for a drunkard, well... I can't tolerate alcohol so that's not going to happen! I did rebel against my parents quite a bit though in my youth!
• “Not to boil meat with milk” (Exodus 23:19) I don't eat dairy so that ain't gonna happen!
• “Not to eat flesh with milk” (Exodus 34:26) Yup! Not gonna happen!
• “Not to do wrong in buying or selling” (Leviticus 25:14) I think we spoke of this already previously.
• “To lend to a poor person” (Exodus 22:24) I don't lend to poor people... I just give. I don't expect a repayment!
• “Not to commit fraud in measuring” (Leviticus 19:35) Nope!
• “To ensure that scales and weights are correct” (Leviticus 19:36) I don't really weight anything ever, but I agree!
• “Not to possess inaccurate measures and weights” (Deuteronomy 25:13-14) Ofcourse!
• “Not to delay payment of a hired man's wages” (Leviticus 19:13) Agreed!
• “That the hired laborer shall be permitted to eat of the produce he is reaping” (Deuteronomy 23:25-26) He or she should be allowed to eat the produce!
• “That the hired laborer shall not take more than he can eat” (Deuteronomy 23:25) Yeah... don't be a glutton though!
• “That a man should fulfill whatever he has uttered” (Deuteronomy 23:24) Yes, we should all do as we say we will do!
• “Not to swear needlessly” (Exodus 20:7) Ahhh... I'm from New York. That's a tough one sometimes!
• “Not to violate an oath or swear falsely” (Leviticus 19:12) Agree!
• “Not to leave something that might cause hurt” (Deuteronomy 22:8) Agree! I don't intend to hurt anyone.
• “To save the pursued even at the cost of the life of the pursuer” (Deuteronomy 25:12) Wow! What happened to “thou shalt not kill?” lol Okay, so maybe sometimes we should kill if need be...
• “Not to spare a pursuer, but he is to be slain before he reaches the pursued and slays the latter, or uncovers his nakedness” (Deuteronomy 25:12) Yeah... It's interesting to note that many of the commandments do give permission to kill in certain instances!
• “Not to steal personal property” (Leviticus 19:11) Never that!
• “To restore that which one took by robbery” (Leviticus 5:23) I agree with this!
• “To return lost property” (Deuteronomy 22:1) Yes!
• “Not to pretend not to have seen lost property, to avoid the obligation to return it” (Deuteronomy 22:3) Yeah, don't be a lazy ass! Return the property!
• “Not to slay an innocent person” (Exodus 20:13) Okay...here we go... thou shalt not kill... an innocent person! That makes sense to me!
• “Not to rob by violence” (Leviticus 19:13) Yeah... or perhaps don't rob at all?
• “Not to defraud” (Leviticus 19:13) Agreed!
• “Not to covet what belongs to another” (Exodus 20:14) Nope, I've never been an envious type of person.
• “Not to crave something that belongs to another” (Deuteronomy 5:18) Not my style!
• “Not to indulge in evil thoughts and sights” (Numbers 15:39) Tough one to follow when living in such an evil world, but I've managed to reprogram my mind with better thoughts and visions. It also helps not to watch television or the news!
• “Not to punish any one who has committed an offense under duress” (Deuteronomy 22:26) I think nowadays most of us are under duress!
• “Not to make a graven image; neither to make it oneself nor to have it made by others” (Exodus 20:4) Are pictures of Jesus not a graven image? That's something to consider now isn't it?
• “Not to cross-breed cattle of different species” (Leviticus 19:19) Ahh... I have no experience farming animals...
• “Not to sow different kinds of seed together in one field” (Leviticus 19:19) Nor am I familiar with farming crops!
• “That a man shall not wear women's clothing” (Deuteronomy 22:5) Interesting! Doesn't it seem like our society is promoting this more and more these days!
• “That a woman should not wear men's clothing” (Deuteronomy 22:5) Well, I did wear men's clothing in high school. I'm past that phase now though. We also have to consider that fashion is an ever evolving phenomenon.
• “That foods become defiled by contact with unclean things” (Leviticus 11:34) Yeah...wash your hands before handling food!
• “That anyone who touches the carcass of a beast that died of itself shall be unclean” (Leviticus 11:39) Yeah, I try not to go around touching dead animals!
• “Not to destroy fruit trees (wantonly or in warfare)” (Deuteronomy 20:19-20) Ahh, if only I had a fruit tree! Well, there's a lemon tree across from my balcony!
• “That an intoxicated person shall not enter the Sanctuary nor give decisions in matters of the Law” (Leviticus 10:9-11) Makes perfect sense! Nobody should take advice from an intoxicated person... especially not in matters of the law! Ya might end up in jail!
• “Not to pass a child through the fire to Molech” (Leviticus 18:21) Okay, well, this Molech being sounds pretty messed up. He wants children passed through fires... I will definitely pass on this one!
• “Not to suffer any one practicing witchcraft to live” (Exodus 22:17) I think if I lived back in these times I would probably be considered a witch. I'm a pretty witchy lady!
• “Not to enquire of an ob (a ghost)” (Deuteronomy 18:11) Yeah, I've talked to ghosts before...
• “Not to seek the maytim (dead)” (Deuteronomy 18:11) And I've talked to the dead!
• “Not to adopt the institutions of idolaters nor their customs” (Leviticus 18:3; Leviticus 20:23) I wouldn't really consider myself to be an idol worshipper... although my best guy friend seems to think I idolize my cats! Lol
• “Not to cut oneself or make incisions in one's flesh in grief, like the idolaters” (Leviticus 19:28; Deuteronomy 14:1) Wow! People were even cutting themselves in ancient times!
• “Not to tattoo the body like the idolaters” (Leviticus 19:28) My friend's rabbi told him that times have changed and tattoos are acceptable now! Very good! I still don't have any myself though!
• “Not to practice kisuf (magic using herbs, stones and objects that people use)” (Deuteronomy 18:10) Like I said... I think I would've been considered a witch for sure back in the day. I practice reiki energy healing. I use herbs, stones and crystals. But you know what, my life has improved since incorporating these alternative healing methods... so be it!
• “Not to practice kessem (a general term for magical practices)” (Deuteronomy 18:10) Yeah... Reiki! Universal life force energy! Is it magic? Feels like it! Oh well! Whatcha gonna do?
• “Not to practice observing times or seasons as favorable or unfavorable, (using astrology)” (Leviticus 19:26) Ahh darn it! I follow astrology too! It's interesting to note that kabbalah (Jewish mysticism) incorporates astrology. So can astrology really be that bad? It's helped me!
• “Not to practice nachesh [doing things based on signs and portents; using charms and incantations]” (Leviticus 19:26) More witchy stuff!
Okay, well were on page 10 now. And I've listed 77 commandments! Somehow I've overwritten this article! lol
But pretty interesting commandments huh? If you wish to learn more about these commandments I suggest signing up for a Judaism class! Til next time... Do your best to be a good person and try following as many of these commandments as you can! It shouldn't be too difficult! Most of these commandments are no-brainers! Ok! Stay safe! Peace and Blessings!
Jennie H is a Reiki Master Energy Healer, Co-Founder of Self Saviorz Society California Non-Profit 501(c)(3), Poet, Author and Entertainer with goals to help raise the vibration and consciousness of humanity!