On Negative Theology

Faith and Philosophy 14 (4):407-422 (1997)
Abstract
In addition to being arguably the greatest Jewish philosopher, Moses Maimonides was also the most radical of the medieval proponents of “negative theology”. Building on some recent important work by Ehud Benor, I propose to discuss the puzzles and paradoxes of negative theology not as simply peculiar to Maimonides’ thought, but as revealing something that can assume great importance for religious life at virtually any time. My discussion will begin with a brief review of well known aspects of Maimonides’ view; following that I will say something about Wittgensteinian views of religious language; then I will return to Maimonides’ negative theology; and finally I will consider some philosophical criticisms, not only of Maimonides’ view but of the medieval discussion as a whole
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