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Home -- Content: Series 7 (Laws) -- Translation: English -- Book: 1 (Tora) -- Part: 2 (Negative) -- Prohibition: 8 -- Text
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The Sharia of Moses in the TORA
Part 2 - The 365 Prohibitions of the Tora

8 - PRACTICING THE SORCERY OF THE OB


Leviticus 19:31 -- “Give no regard to mediums and familiar spirits; do not seek after them, to be defiled by them: I am the LORD your God.”

This commandment prohibits practicing the sorcery of an ob, who, after burning a certain incense and performing a certain ritual, pretends that he hears a voice speaking from under his armpit, and answering his question – this practice being a form of idolatry. In his “Mishneh Torah” Maimonides adds: “Or he takes a dead man’s skull, burns incense to it, and uses arts of divination, till one seems to hear a voice, exceedingly low, come from under his armpit and reply to him.”*

* Mishneh Torah, Mada, Hilchoth Abodath Kochabim VI, 1

According to Maimonides, the practices of both the ob and the yidde’oni (see following commandment) are species of idolatry and not merely of witchcraft.*

* Mishneh Torah, Mada, Hilchoth Abodath Kochabim VI, 2

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