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How Many Israelis Read the Torah? You May Be Surprised

No less than 95% of Jews in Israel have a Tanakh in their home, with 68% of the total population revering it as a holy book.
Just how many Jews in Israel own a Tanakh, the core text of Judaism comprised of the Torah, Prophets and Writings?

A survey conducted by the Herzog Academic College in Judea’s Alon Shvut ahead of its “Opening the Tanakh” conference reveals surprising figures, which were reported Tuesday by Yedioth Aharonoth.

A full 95% of Israelis have a Tanakh in their home, according to the poll conducted for the college by the Yifat Gat Brand institute among 501 adult respondents.

Regarding how frequently they read from the Tanakh, 42% said they only do so at infrequent times, with a small portion saying the last time they studied it was ahead of the high school Tanakh matriculation exams.

Meanwhile, 13% said they read the Tanakh, and particular Psalms, in times of crisis; 15% said they never read Tanakh – among secular Jews that figure was at 30%.

Breaking the results down by region, the poll found that a full 71% of residents in the Jerusalem area frequently read Tanakh, while between 32-40% of the rest of the country reads the text frequently. Only 2% of Jerusalem area residents never read Tanakh, as opposed to 16% in the rest of Israel.


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