Prophecy: The History of an Idea in Medieval Jewish by Howard Kreisel

By Howard Kreisel

More than the other subject, prophecy represents the purpose at which the Divine meets the human, absolutely the meets the relative. How can a person reach the notice of God? In what demeanour does God, while conceived as everlasting and transcendent, handle corporeal, transitory creatures? What occurs to God's divine fact whilst it truly is beheld through minds restricted of their energy to recognize, and motivated by means of the highbrow currents in their time and position? How have been those concerns seen via the nice Jewish philosophers of the previous, who took the divine verbal exchange and all it includes heavily, whereas whilst wanted to know it up to humanly attainable during facing a myriad of different matters that occupied their attention?

This e-book deals an in-depth research of prophecy within the considered seven of the best medieval Jewish philosophers: R. Saadiah Gaon, R. Judah Halevi, Maimonides, Gersonides, R. Hasdai Crescas, R. Joseph Albo and Baruch Spinoza. It makes an attempt to trap the `original voice' of those thinkers via the highbrow milieus within which they built their philosophies, and via conscientiously studying their perspectives of their textual contexts. It additionally offers with the relation among the sooner methods and the later ones. total, this publication offers an important version for narrating the heritage of an idea.

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Nevertheless, I present this book as a plausible historical reconstruction of medieval Jewish philosophers' approaches to th e topic of prophecy in the broader context of their thought and intellectual milieu. Taken together, their approaches form the Jewish philosophic "highway" this idea has traveled in the medieval period. Much of what I write suggests primarily a picture of earlier "great books" influencing the writing of later "great books". If for Descartes, "I think therefore I am", and for Aristotle, "I am what I think", I would add, "I think what I read".

There ex ists two excelle nt treatments of Ibn Daud 's tr eati se th at d eal also with his ap p roac h to pr ophecy, an d I find that I h ave littl e to ad d to th em . M. (Resia n ne ) Fon tain e , In Defense ofJudaism: Abraham Ibn Daud (Asse n / Maastri cht, the Nethe rlan ds : Van Go rc u m , 1990) : 137-1 67 ; Ami ra Er an , From Simple Faith to Sublime Faith [H e b. ] (Israel: H akibu tz H ameu ch ad , )998) : 207-227. INTRODUCTION 23 the treatises that I discuss. It is hard to overestimate the historical significance of these commentaries and the philosophic comments he weaves into them.

Just as many human activities involve an arduous process to reach their goal, so it is with rational investigation in the quest for the truth.!? Precisely for this reason , revelation is indispensable to humanity in his view. It imparts the fundamental truths immediately to everyone - those who are incapable of completing the process of reason, and those who are capable but would be left in the interim without true beliefs. Without revelation, people may also experience uncertainty regarding their conclusions, or arrive at false ones.

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