As we all know, Judaism is based on a strict Unitarian monotheism.
In order to be Jewish you have to accept the word of God (the Torah), follow the 10 commandments and be circumcised. However, there are no specific instructions on “how to be a Jew”.
Many attempts to create such a guide have been made, but the most widely spread and popular of all creeds is that of Rabbi Moses Ben Maimon (Maimonides or The Rambam).
The 13 Principles of Faith can be found in the Rambam’s introduction to the tenth chapter of Talmud Sanhedrin. The Rambam listed those principles of faith to help guide the Jewish people through the ages.
The Rambam’s thirteen principles of faith, which he thought were the minimum requirements of Jewish belief, are:
1. G-d is the Creator and Ruler of all things.
2 G-d is one.
3. G-d is incorporeal.
4. G-d is first and last.
5. It is proper to pray only to G-d. One may not pray to anyone or anything else.
6. All the words of the prophets are true.
7. The prophecy of Moses is absolutely true.
8. The entire Torah that we now have is that which was given to Moses.
” וַיָּבֹא מֹשֶׁה, וַיְסַפֵּר לָעָם אֵת כָּל-דִּבְרֵי יְהוָה, וְאֵת, כָּל-הַמִּשְׁפָּטִים; וַיַּעַן כָּל-הָעָם קוֹל אֶחָד, וַיֹּאמְרוּ, כָּל-”הַדְּבָרִים אֲשֶׁר-דִּבֶּר יְהוָה, נַעֲשֶׂה
” And Moses came and told the people all the words of the LORD, and all the ordinances; and all the people answered with one voice, and said: ‘All the words which the LORD hath spoken will we do.”
9. There will be no other Torah.
10. G-d knows all of man’s deeds and thoughts.
11. G-d rewards those who keep His commandments, and punishes those who transgress Him.
12. The Messiah will come one day.
13. The dead will be brought back to life when G-d wills it to happen.
According to the Rambam, each person must acknowledge these principles as truths, in order to be considered a Jew, and to have a place in the World to Come.
Today, many scholars disagree with the Rambam and claim that there are only 3 principles: Belief in God, in Creation and in providence.
Main phrases of the post + transcription + translation
Hebrew Transcription Translation
י”ג עִקָּרִים Yod- gimek ‘iqqārîm Thirteen principles of faith In Judaism
מֹשֶׁה mōšeh Moses
אֵל ‘ēl G-d
אֶחָד ‘ehād One
בְּרִית מִילָה Berît mîlāh Circumcision