Tradition is important. In Judaism we have customs and we have law. Both are considered tradition. Like I said, there are core components which have function, irrespective on their sources. No where in the law does it say one has to know Hebrew to be a Jew, but without Hebrew one can not fully engage in all the activities that make Judaism Judaism. Brit is an initiation ceremony. Thats what makes the people. How truthful, using Western standards, that the bible may be is irrelevant. Its done. It has a function.(and as far I as know it has benign consequences) You should watch Fiddler in the Roof.<quoted text>
You seem a little loose on the whole belief in god thing though (and please don't say again how practice is more important - I get it). The whole thing is built on an underlying belief. A faith.(The belief in something WITHOUT evidence.)
Moses. The Commandments etc. These were the words of god - no? If not, then your whole belief system could just as easily be built on what a bunch of wise old men wrote down thousand of years ago. And what really makes you think these guys were any wiser and smarter than you.
Maybe one of them, on a whim, jotted down once that you should all lop of your babies' foreskin and this will help to make him a man.
And so for thousands of years, you've blindly been perpetuating the "tradition?!"
Either two choices: these were the actual words of god or you have to entertain the very real possibility that the scenario the line above is true.
And then what is the importance of Scripture?
And yes, Judaism is based on practice. And peoplehood. The only real canon is that God is one. Thats the core belief. The rest is commentary.
Different Jewish movements have different viewpoints about the authenticity of the Torah ranging from literal word of god to ...mans recollection or interpretation of what man thought God was saying.....But yet all the main movements believe in following (some semblance of) the tradition, regardless.