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Kenneseth Eliyahu Synagogue--kalaghoda--Bombay--India (One of Bombay's Oldest)



Shaar Hashamaim Synagogue--Thane--India



 

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A nice thread and great pics Hindustani.
I have refered this thread to some of my friends at work and they were really amazed! Thanks on their behalf also!.

I guess, there is a Synagogue some where in Secunderabad (Prendergaust road?)
Hope you can get some pics from there and post here too.
 

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A Jew priest blowing the sacred ram's horn at Judah Hyam Synagogue. Photo: S. Arneja
URL: http://www.thehindu.com/thehindu/mp/2003/01/09/stories/2003010900190300.htm
To serve the needs of the tiny Jewish community staying in Delhi, Judah Hyam Synagogue on the Humayun Road, built nearly half a century ago, is the only place of worship. MADHUR TANKHA pays a visit to this little-known piece of the ci ty's rich heritage....

STANDING SILENTLY on Delhi's Humayun Road, the sole Jewish synagogue of the city easily slips one's notice. But, if one digs into its history, a need springs up to tread back nearly half a century.

"The Jewish community, which has been habituating in the Capital for long built this Judah Hyam Synagogue nearly half a century ago. Besides Middle-East traders, who had regular contacts with India and several Jewish merchants from Persia, Iraq and Afghanistan pouring into Delhi of olden times, a few German and Polish families, who were facing persecution and atrocities at the hands of Nazi dictator, Adolf Hitler, also settled down here," informs Ezekiel Issac Malekar, who conducts religious services at the shrine. With the years and years of turning of history pages, the community is today reduced to a mere 5,000 sprinkled across the country, with only 50 people residing in Delhi at present.

"Today, we are a small community here. About 30 to 40 worshippers visit the synagogue during the Sabbath," adds Malekar. The place of worship also sees sometimes visitors from the Israeli embassy, the most noted foreign dignitary who ever visited it included the late Israeli President, Shimon Peres in 1993.

Letting out information about the synagogue's past, Malekar says, the late Jacob Solomon, the stationmaster of Delhi railway station, acquired a plot of land in 1932 from the Government to build a burial ground for the Jews, next to the Christian cemetery. Erza Kolet was one of the founder members. G.M. Benjamin, the architect who constructed the Parliament annexe and the Delhi High Court, was the chief architect of the synagogue, juxtaposed to the Jewish cemetery.

Today, the small Jewish community finds it difficult to afford a paid Hazan and so, Malekar has volunteered to conduct the religious services. On the entrance of the synagogue, it is inscribed, "Fear of God is beginning of knowledge." When one expresses amazement over this, Malekar says, "This actually means reverence of God is the beginning of wisdom." He conducts all the prayers, including ceremonies like bar-mitzvah - son of Commandment - for boys when they attain the age of 13 and for girls, when the become 12.

On the significance of these ceremonies, Malekar says, "This means that children are ethically and morally adult". Tsisith, a shawl is given to the children in which there are 613 precepts and each silken thread connotes one commandment. Jewish prayers bear some resemblance to Hindu temple prayers in the sense that here too; the head priest blows ram's horn, which is analogous to conch. During New Year or Day of Atonement ram's horn is blown 100 times as worshippers offer benediction, asking God for forgiveness.

But the similarities end here. Inside the hallowed precincts there are no frankincense, idols or pictures. Torah, the holy books of Jews, has been strategically placed towards east, so that it faces Jerusalem. Torah - which contains the first five books of Old Testament - has been kept on the wooden compartment called Hekhal. There is diya or Ner-E-Tamid - the eternal light - which contains coconut oil lamp that flickers throughout the day. For Saturday morning prayers, there have to be a minimum 10 people. During Sabbath, which starts from Friday, when the sun sets to Saturday, the Jews try to resist the temptation of lighting a cigarette or even a necessity like driving a vehicle. They don't pluck a flower.

"This is done so that rest is given to Mother Earth," adds Malekar. Before entering and leaving the synagogue, worshippers, who cover their heads with Kippa, a skull cap, kiss the Mezuzah. Inside this plastic casket there is a scroll on which verses from Deuteronomy have been inscribed. There is Thanksgiving on Friday evening. During sanctification, grape juice is served to the members. Members bring Siddur, the Delhi prayer book.

Since Judaism believes in oneness of the Almighty, there is an interfaith study centre within the synagogue precincts, where religions of various dominations are studied. It contains a collection of about 5,000 books. Meanwhile, outside the synagogue life goes on as usual with Delhiites scurrying across to meet their worldly targets.
 

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Location : Mattancherry, Kerala
Attractions : 1568 A.D.
Famous As : Oldest Synagogue In The Common Wealth Countries

The Jewish synagogue in Kochi was built in 1568 AD. Scrolls of Old Testament and a number of copper plates inscribed in the Hebrew script are preserved in this Synagogue. This synagogue stands out as a testimony of communal harmony in the state for centuries.

The Jewish Synagogue, the oldest Synagogue in the common wealth countries was built in 1568 AD. Located at Mattancherry, the Synanogue still has the scrolls of the Old Testament and the copper plates, which recorded the grants of privilege, bequeathed by the Kochi rulers.

Not one of the nearly two hundred year old tiles resembles another. There are several finely wrought gold and silver crowns gifted to the synanogue by the various patrons.

The Synagogue is open from 10 am to 12 noon and 3 pm to 5 pm on all days except Saturdays and Jewish holidays
 

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The Ohel-David Synagogue , Pune

"The Ohel-David Synagogue was built by David Sassoon in 1863 in Poona, where he had his resort home. The synagogue is a well-known landmark in Poona, of impressive architecture in spacious grounds in a central location in Poona cantonment. David Sassoon's Poona home, where he died in 1864 much mourned by Jews and Indians alike, was across the street from the synagogue. His sons buried him in the synagogue grounds in a fine mausoleum. The synagogue and mausoleum were visited by the President of India, Dr. Zakir Hussein, at a special Memorial Service on 10 December 1968, on the occasion of the Centenary celebration of the Sassoon General Hospitals in Poona established by the Sassoons."

 

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Mumbai
Copyright Nick Dowling


Kolkata
Copyright Kanyad Sanyal


Kochi
Copyright Dobry Vojak
 

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Magen David Synagogue, Byculla, Mumbai
copyright Humayunn N A Peerzaada



___________
outside Cochin's Synagogue
copyrightt jbenson2


 

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the original (black-middle eastern) jews who went to india in the 1st century AD suffered greatly when the second wave (white-european)landed in the 1400s, the two communaties living almost completetly seperatly.
Inerestingly enough my family - heres the hint to my carefully gaurded ethnicity...- has a surname from a root name that is almost identical to the name of the main 'isrealite'family that ariived in cochin in the 1400's & there from the same place in spain & have the same 'title'.
The historians in my family seem to be more willing to trace us back to Turkey, Crete & to start with Bagdhad.
i think only Cochin & bombay have/had communities that pre dated colonialism, the rest came over with the brits.
being completely non religious my self i probably didnt feel as much as i out when i visited the jewish temples in kerala & bombay. such is the life.
Oi Vay
 

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I think Gujarat has some communities as well, originally Iranian Jews, who fled with the Zoroastrians
 

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I think Gujarat has some communities as well, originally Iranian Jews, who fled with the Zoroastrians
thats interesting though as i understood it the Iranian jews were not persecuted at all till the 'revolution'.
(Infact jews & muslims have historicaly got on better than jews & christians. How times change...)
D'you know any more 'bout the ones in gujurat?
 

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Sorry, don't have more info.. was something one of my Jewish friends told me. His family can be traced back to India as well, though his ancestry is mainly African
 

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Sorry, don't have more info.. was something one of my Jewish friends told me. His family can be traced back to India as well, though his ancestry is mainly African
Wot u mean hes gujarati jewish settled in Uganda?
Or hes Negro /falasha jew that went via gujarat?
Wild
 

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Just some trivia-

There are some lost jewish tribes in South India as well as North-East India. I remember around an year ago some 200 members of the North-eastern tribe moved to Isreal.
 

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^yup, i think theyre called the Bani Menashe
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
A nice thread and great pics Hindustani.
I have refered this thread to some of my friends at work and they were really amazed! Thanks on their behalf also!.

I guess, there is a Synagogue some where in Secunderabad (Prendergaust road?)
Hope you can get some pics from there and post here too.
the secunderabad one you mentioned. looked everywhere. cant find it. meanwhile enjoy this.

Magen Abraham Synagogue - Ahmedabad - Gujarat




Megan David Synagogue - Bombay - Maharashtra

 

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Jews=Jains?

What are parsis then?

Judaism isn't an Indian religion, is it?

So Jains are Indian Jews?
Jews and jains are not the same. Judaism is a religion originated in Israel.

jainism from Hinduism.Hence it is an Indian religion.

Parsis have their ancestors in Iran. Their religion is Zoroastrian.
Tatas, Godrej, Wadia etc are some parsi communities. See, they are truly Indians, have contributed to India in various fields.
It is one of the 4 revealed religions (Judaism, Christianity, Islam and Zorastrian).

I think, with my limited knowledge, i've cleared your doubts. If there's some error, it may be due to my ignorance.
 
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