New PDF release: 20th Century Jewish Religious Thought

ISBN-10: 0827608926

ISBN-13: 9780827608924

JPS has reissued Cohen and Mendes-Flohr’s vintage paintings, probably an important, complete anthology on hand on twentieth century Jewish suggestion. This amazing quantity provides one hundred forty concise but authoritative essays through well known Jewish figures Eugene Borowitz, Emil Fackenheim, Blu Greenberg, Susannah Heschel, Jacob Neusner, Gershom Scholem, Adin Steinsaltz, and so forth. They outline and replicate upon such crucial principles as charity, selected humans, loss of life, relations, love, fable, ache, Torah, culture and extra. With entries from Aesthetics to Zionism, this e-book offers awesome insights into either the Jewish event and the Judeo-Christian tradition.


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The very term kofer suggests that it is truth itself that is being denied. Actually, Maimonides carefully distinguishes between two kinds of denial. The kofer just mentioned is kofer be'ikkar, since the existence of God is the ikkar, that is, the first principle "that all depends on it" (MT Yesodei haTorah 1: 6). The "all" includes the Torah. Yet Maimonides is chiefly concerned to denounce as kofrim not simply those who deny God's existence but also those who hold wrong views about God, for example, that God is not one in the sense he specifies, or that God is corporeal (Guide 1, 36).

AGGADAH 9 served various functions in other contexts: as an apologetic response to the hostile question why the Torah, if it was indeed the word of God, was possessed only by the Jews, as well as a polemical proof of the unworthiness of the gentile nations (Mekh. Ba1:lodesh 5); as a rationalization for God's justice in punishing Israel for disobeying his law (Ex. R. 27:9), and as the basis for Israel's complaint to God that he has treated her unworthily (Lam. R. 3: 1). In each of these cases, the meaning of the aggadah is a direct function of its context.

Yet most people would not say that they are agnostics with respect to the existence of the little green man, but rather would flatly deny ATHEISM 25 that there is any such thing, meaning thereby that they have not the slightest reason for holding that he exists. It is perfectly rational, and thus quite common, to take the same attitude toward the God of established religion and hold that there is no more reason for supposing that there exists, for example, a God under the description of an all-benevolent, all-powerful creator who takes a special interest in the behavior of the jews than there is for believing in the existence of any of the personages of classical mythology.

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20th Century Jewish Religious Thought

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