Everybody, reading together, yet each individual reading on their own. Through the app, on the website, or with a printed volume of Tanakh in your hand; on the train, at a cafe, or at home; with your morning coffee, or at night, in bed; with friends, with children, or as a personal challenge.
On Chanukah 5775, December 21, 2014, the first cycle (ever!) of the joint reading of Tanakh began. Every day, at midnight, the daily chapter on the 929 website changes, and the next chapter appears, along with interesting information, brief explanations, video clips, pictures, and even narration of the text, for those who prefer to listen.
The lively discourse surrounding the chapter of the day takes place both on social networks and in study groups, encounters and events in the real world. Taking part are Israel’s leading academics, cultural icons, public figures, artists, and writers, both men and women. 929 offers all participants the chance to open their eyes and be curious about new and varied approaches.
929 calls on you to rediscover the riches of the bestselling book in history.
To listen to it, to converse with it, to find ourselves within it and it within us, and to uncover what Tanakh has to offer us, here and now.
In between work, family, friends, and life’s other major and minor tasks, 929 is an opportunity for a personal challenge that is full of interest, meaning, learning, curiosity and enjoyment. A challenge that many others are partnering in, as they walk this long and fascinating trail, and share the abundance that it offers us as individuals and as a learning community.
So, if you seek to know more, or are searching for insight, if you want to bring new meaning into your daily life, or would like to discover new voices within yourselves, while being part of a broad community that is marching along the same road: then reading Tanakh with 929 was created just for you!
Tanakh offers an unrivaled broad basis for self-discovery, for relevant, and for individual, social and cultural discourse. And above all – it’s just a great story.
Countless words have already been written about it. It is a foundational text, a common denominator on an international level, whose stories and ideas reach out and echo within our own lives, to this very day. As a book, Tanakh is amazingly rich: enjoyable, adventurous, and moving – but also contradictory, thought-provoking and controversial. It encompasses a kaleidoscope of subjects: from history, politics and geometry through to design and cuisine. It offer us the journeys of individuals and families, private loves and national empire-building, moments of kindness and epic world wars, amusing anecdotes and myths that transcend cultures, angry prophecies alongside tender poetry, stirring legends and words of deep philosophy.
From Sunday to Thursday, we read one chapter each day, in sequence, and in line with a common, uniform timetable. Every day, at midnight, the chapter of the day will change on the 929 website, and the home page will show the new date and the chapter that we are reading on that day.
The weekend (Friday and Shabbat/ Saturday) is an opportunity to complete the chapters that we have missed, or go more deeply into those that we have already read. The website will have a weekly summary of the main points in the chapters that we have read, along with some additional content.
Every day we read one complete chapter. It doesn’t matter if it is short or long, complex or simple, or even if the subject matter leaves us at a climax – only one chapter a day.
We begin the first cycle of reading the 929 chapters of Tanakh on Sunday, the fifth day of Chanukah, December 21, 2014. On that day, we will read Chapter 1 of Bereshit/Genesis.
We will end in the summer of 2018, as part of the celebrations for Israel’s 70th anniversary.
This reading together will continue sequentially, with each and every individual choosing whether to read it all, to join in for just one chapter or one particularly interesting book, or to jump from one chapter to another based on ability and inclination.
The daily reading of Tanakh is based on the text’s division into 929 chapters, a division that came into being in the late Middle Ages, and which is attributed to Christian theologian, Archbishop Stephen Langton. This division is the most commonly used one today, and is generally in use among Jews as well, along with the Torah reading which is divided into weekly parshiot, and other divisions.
The idea of a daily learning program also has deep roots. It was in 1923, at the behest of Rabbi Meir Shapira of Lublin, that Jews around the world began studying the Daf Hayomi, or daily page, of Gemara. This is a method of studying one folio page (two sides) from the Babylonian Talmud every day, with the whole of the Talmud completed every seven and a half years. This daily study of Talmud quickly caught on, and is now in the middle of its 13th study cycle, encompassing thousands of students throughout the world, on the web, in study groups or independently.
For many years, the Jewish study tradition has promoted the approach of the daily study of foundational texts, and now the daily chapter of Tanakh joins this culture of reading Jewish sources.
The discourse being carried on in virtual space, surrounding the daily chapter of Tanakh, reflects all of the points of view of those on the journey. It is like seeing the same vista from different angles. It takes place within an atmosphere of tolerance and inclusiveness, and invites all participants to open their eyes and be curious about new and varied approaches.
The living spirit behind the discourse on 929 is made up of academics, philosophers, writers, artists, public figures and leading personalities from the artistic and creative spheres in Israel, both men and women, who use social networks to post status updates, poetry and images relating to the chapter of the day from a personal point of view.
Every share becomes a starting point that invites discourse, discussion and thought.
The reading of Tanakh touches every aspect of life, and can create a discourse that connects people and puts depth and interest into any encounter: at home or in the local neighborhood, at work or at the local community center, within educational frameworks or at private gatherings, among children, youth or adults.
929 therefore encourages the establishment of study groups throughout Israel, meeting regularly to read the chapter of the day, or for weekly study of the five chapters being read that week. Dozens of organizations, institutions and pre-Army academies have already set up daily or weekly study groups following the 929 method, Cultural circles throughout Israel are basing their study programs on 929, We look forward to joining with youth movements, commercial entities, local authorities, and more. 929 provides assistance by connecting groups with the rhythm of the joint reading program and by supporting group facilitators in their task.