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Beyond the requirelnents of prayer, the sociological exigencies of Jewish existence also made for community. In some areas of the diaspora anti-Semitic legislation compelled Jews to live in certain districts, but even in areas where ghettos were not mandated by law, the Jews' relation to the larger political order was mediated through the Jewish community. Local communities (kehillot) operated semi-autonomously both in relation to each other and the wider Gentile culture, offering their members a range of services that today would be provided by a combination of charitable, religious, and state institutions (Encyclopedia ]udaica) "Community"; IZatz). Just as the Jew's relationship to God is mediated through membership in the Jewish people, so the Jew's relationship to society was mediated through the kehillah) which, in addition to providing for individual and communal needs, levied the taxes to be paid to the government and generally managed relations with the non-Jewish world.