The year 1492 is only the last in a series of “ends” that inform the representation of medieval Spain in modern Jewish historical and literary discourses. These ends simultaneously mirror the traumas of history and shed light on the discursive process by which hermetic boundaries are set between periods, communities, and texts. This book addresses the representation of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries as the end of al-Andalus (Islamic Spain). Here, the end works to locate and separate Muslim from (...) Christian Spain, Jews from Arabs, philosophy from Kabbalah, Kabbalah from literature, and texts from contexts. The book offers a reading of texts that emerge from its Andalusi, Jewish, and Arabic cultural sphere: Maimonides’ Guide of the Perplexed; the major text of Kabbalah, the Zohar; and the Arabic rhymed prose narrative of Ibn al-Astarkuwi. The author argues that these texts are written in a language that disrupts the possibility of locating it in a pre-existing cultural situation, a recognizable literary tradition, or a particular genre. At stake are issues – texts and contexts – that have gained particular urgency in the writings of such recent thinkers as Walter Benjamin, Jacques Derrida, Giorgio Agamben, Jean-Luc Nancy, and Avital Ronell. The book reads the place and taking place of language, interrogating the notion of disappearing contexts and the view that language is derivative of its true place, the context that, having ended, is mourned as silent and lost. (shrink)
The Hebrew Bible: glimpses of immortality -- Early post-biblical literature: gateways to heaven and hell -- The mishnah: who will merit the world to come? -- The Talmud: what happens in the next world? -- Medieval Jewish philosophy: faith and reason -- Mysticism: reincarnation in Kabbalah -- Modernity: what do we believe? -- The Messiah: the eternal thread of hope.
This article aims to study the origin, nature and development of eschatology and apocalyptic in the post-exilic Judaism over the centuries III and II BC. Its theoretical reference is based on two scientific analyzes about the two phenomena: the historical-critical analysis of Friedrich Dingermann and the analysis from the history of religions made by Johann Maier. As a method of approach is used the deductive method, whereby it is possible, from the main present theories, analyze each one within their own (...) ethos. Besides this one, it used as the procedure method the comparative method, through the intertwining of the studied theories that allows a glimpse at the evolution that the two phenomena experienced in the religious history of Ancient Israel and Judaism. (shrink)
This essay presents an integrated account of Michael Wyschogrod's Zionism as a function of his broader theological anthropology, eschatology, and carnal interpretation of Israel's election. Against Leora Batnitzky, I show that Wyschogrod's Zionism, while definitively messianic, is decidedly not fanatical or fundamentalist. Against Meir Soloveichik, I show that Wyschogrod has maintained this non-fanatical messianism consistently throughout his career, and so his pacific political prescriptions are organically at one with his vigorous calls for Jewish sovereignty over the land.
Abstract Proceeding from Jewish philosophy's origins in the convergence and divergence of Greek and Jewish thought and the resulting possibilities of construing Judaism and philosophy as heterogeneous or homogeneous, and ranging across the three major “ages“ or linguistic matrices of Jewish philosophizing (Hellenistic, Judeo-Arabic, and Germanic), the essay describes Jewish philosophy as an unresolvable entanglement in a dialectic of heteronomy and autonomy.
Whether extrovertive, introvertive, or some further hybrid, the process of the soul touching the fullness of its divine origins is itself undergoing transformation in the twenty-first-century cultural matrices of Israel. A remarkable exemplar of devotional Hebrew cultures can be found within the hybrid networks of haredi worlds in Israel today. R. Yitzhaq Maier Morgenstern, author of Yam ha-okhmah, Netiv ayyim, and De'i okhmah le-nafshekha, is arguably the most innovative mystical voice in Israel. Why are his works resonating so strongly both (...) inside and outside their haredi communities of origin? How is his innovative thinking affecting the devotional praxis of Devekut both inside and outside the unfolding Hasidic networks? This exploration of mystical apperception through Devekut builds upon studies of Garb, Huss, and Meir, while challenging the idea that Morgenstern's expanding impact is solely a function of his mystical-magical charisma and hypernomian spiritual practice. This study argues that it is Morgenstern's hybridized thinking through key theoretical issues in Kabbalah and Hasidism as they apply to the lived practice of a devotional life of Devekut that will likely remain his strongest innovation and contribution to contemporary Jewish mysticism. (shrink)
This essay revisits the significance of Kaufmann's Toledot ha-emunah ha-yisre'elit in Jewish intellectual history, as its reception has hitherto been somewhat reductive. His work is generally viewed as an anti-Christian polemic with a Zionist agenda that sought to glorify the formative period of his people. A closer look at his intellectual background, as well as his theoretical framework, leads us to a different understanding of his work in general and of its alleged nationalistic features in particular. The essay shows, (...) inter alia, that Kaufmann was already making a Diltheyan hermeneutic turn decades before others in his field. (shrink)
Duty and Healing positions ethical issues commonly encountered in clinical situations within Jewish law. The concept of duty is significant in exploring bioethical issues, and this book presents an authentic and non-parochial Jewish approach to bioethics, while it includes critiques of both current secular and Jewish literatures. Among the issues the book explores are the role of family in medical decision-making, the question of informed consent as a personal religious duty, and the responsibilities of caretakers. The exploration (...) of contemporary ethical problems in healthcare through the lens of traditional sources in Jewish law is an indispensable guide of moral knowledge. (shrink)
Medieval Jewish intellectuals living in Muslim and Christian lands were strongly concerned to recover what they regarded as a ‘lost’ Jewish philosophical tradition. As part of this project they transmitted and produced many philosophical and scientific works and commentaries, as well as philosophical commentary on scripture, in Judaeo-Arabic and Hebrew, the principal literary languages of medieval Jewry. This volume presents new or revised translations of seven prominent medieval Jewish rationalists: Saadia Gaon, Solomon ibn Gabirol, Moses Maimonides, Isaac (...) Albalag, Moses of Narbonne, Levi Gersonides, Hasdai Crescas and Joseph Albo - including, for the first time in English, the complete Falaquera abridgement of Gabirol's Source of Life. These works range over topics that are both theological (e.g. the creation of the world) and philosophical (e.g. determinism and free choice), but they are characterized by two overarching principles: the unity of truth, and its accessibility to human reason. (shrink)
1. Introduction: a name, not an essence -- 2. Why Jewish thought and what makes it Jewish? -- 3. Deadly philosophical abstraction -- 4. The stranger in your midst -- 5. Nefesh: the soul as flesh and blood -- 6. The environmentalist contribution to genocide -- 7. Torture -- 8. Hunger and homelessness -- 9. Philosophy, religion, and genocide -- 10. A concluding reflection on body and soul.
Judaism in the twentieth century began to return to its scriptural, communal roots after a centuries-long detour through Greek-influenced natural philosophy, a detour during which science and ethics were assumed to be partners and Jewish ethics drew heavily on natural philosophy and science. Twentieth-century philosophical ethics and science, particularly biological science, have developed in such a way as to make any continuation of that historical partnership problematic. This is not altogether regrettable because the problematizing of this long-standing partnership has (...) driven Jewish ethics back to its real roots: covenantal relationship, and moral wisdom and discernment. (shrink)
In much environmentally concerned literature, there is a burgeoning concern for the status and sustainability of human hope. Within Christian circles, this attention has often taken the form of eschatological reflection. While there is important warrant for attention to eschatology in Christian examinations of hope, I claim that to move so quickly from hope to eschatology is to confuse a species of Christian hope for a definition of hope itself; as such, it is important for theological ethicists to examine hope (...) also from the experiential perspective of the human hoper. In particular, this is important today given the shortcomings of an eschatological focus in addressing anxieties arising due to the environmental crisis. Through examining hope as a fallible human activity, one can come to better understand hope's importance to human life, its profound ambiguity, and the potential threat that the environmental crisis poses to it. (shrink)
Why was the great philosopher Spinoza expelled from his Portuguese-Jewish community in Amsterdam? Nadler's investigation of this simple question gives fascinating new perspectives on Spinoza's thought and the Jewish religious and philosophical tradition from which it arose.
Jewish learning and thought in Languedoc -- 1250-1300: implications of original philosophic work and the diffusion of philosophic learning in Languedoc -- 1250-1300: Jewish contacts with Christian intellectuals and Jewish thought regarding Christianity -- Meiri's transformation of Talmud study: philosophic spirituality in a halakhic key -- 1300: on the eve of the controversy -- 1300-1304: knowledge and authority in dispute -- 1304-1306: the controversy peaks -- The effects of the expulsion: Jewish philosophic culture in Roussillon and (...) Provence. (shrink)
Halakhah and ethics in the Jesus tradition -- Matthew's divorce texts in the light of pre-rabbinic Jewish law -- Let the dead bury their dead : Jesus and the law revisited -- James, Israel, and Antioch -- Natural law in Second Temple Judaism -- Natural law in the New Testament? -- The Noachide commandments and New Testament ethics -- The beginning of Christian public ethics : from Luke to Aristides and Diognetus -- Jewish and Christian public ethics in (...) the early Roman Empire. (shrink)
The Jewish Philosophy Reader is the first comprehensive anthology of classic writings on Jewish philosophy from the Bible to postmodernism. The Reader is clearly divided into four separate parts: Foundations and First Principles, Medieval and Renaissance Jewish Philosophy, Modern Jewish Thought, and Contemporary Jewish Philosophy. Each part is clearly introduced by the editors. The readings featured are representative writings of each era listed above and are from the following major thinkers: Abrabanel, Baeck, Bergman, Borowitz, Buber, (...) Cohen, Crescas, Fackenheim, Geiger, Gersonides, Goodman, Graetz, Halevi, Hartman, Heschel, Hess, Hirsch, Ibn Ezra, Ibn Gabirol, Ibn Paquda, Kellner, Kook, Krochmal, Leibowitz, Levinas, Maimonides, Maybaum, Mendelssohn, Novak, Philo, Plaskow, Rosenzweig, Saadia, Scholem, Seeskin, Soloveitchik, Spinoza, Strauss, Wolf, Zunz. (shrink)
The central debate of natural theology among medieval Muslims and Jews concerned whether or not the world was eternal. Opinions divided sharply on this issue because the outcome bore directly on God's relationship with the world: eternity implies a deity bereft of will, while a world with a beginning leads to the contrasting picture of a deity possessed of will. In this exhaustive study of medieval Islamic and Jewish arguments for eternity, creation, and the existence of God, Herbert Davidson (...) provides a systematic classification of the proofs, analyzes and explains them, and traces their sources in Greek philosophy. Throughout the study, Davidson tries to take into account every argument of a philosophical character, disregarding only those arguments that rest entirely on religious faith or which fall below a minimal level of plausibility. (shrink)
Leading contemporary Jewish thinker David Novak has here compiled ten of his essays on a variety of issues in Jewish ethics. Drawing constantly on classical Jewish tradition, Novak also looks at a wide range of modern critical scholarship on the ancient sources. He aims to point out certain common features of Jewish and Christian ethics and the normative implications of this overlapping of traditions; he assumes the reality of a "Judeo-Christian ethic," while refusing to minimize the (...) doctrinal differences between the two traditions. The essays address such major normative issues in social justice as ecology, war and peace, the treatment of minorities, and the approach to AIDS patients. This combination of theoretical reflection and practical application, along with careful and detailed analysis of classical Jewish texts, makes the book a welcome contribution to contemporary ethical theory and normative ethics as well as a work of original Jewish theology. (shrink)
In the modern consideration of historical time, reason is the driving force of progress through a homogenous, linear and continuum time. In fact, during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries humanity was witnessing a history of progress in which it appeared that history was progressing towards a better world. However, the tragedies of the twentieth century indicate the opposite. Western reason proved unable to stop the barbarism of war. At the heart of this panorama, according to Emmanuel Levinas and Johann Baptist (...) Metz, was the idealism of the Greek logos presented in the philosophical and theological mode of thinking. Theology and philosophy would share in this way the same idealist vocation towards totality which, in Levinas’s categories, is the forgetting of singularity and their concrete situation in favour of universality. I will show how by resorting to the Jewish legacy, and particularly to the concepts of eschatology, apocalypse, and messianism, Levinas and Metz define a new relationship with historical time. In this way they not only oppose the mainstream consideration of history as a vector of continuous progress towards its own realization, but also introduce in history the contingency of individual experiences and particularly those of the victims of such history. (shrink)
Over the past decade much significant new work has appeared in the field of Jewish ethics. While much of this work has been devoted to issues in applied ethics, a number of important essays have explored central themes within the tradition and clarified the theoretical foundations of Jewish ethics. This important text grew out of the need for a single work which accurately and conveniently reflects these developments within the field. The first text of its kind in almost (...) two decades, Contemporary Jewish Ethics and Morality presents wide-ranging and carefully organized recent essays on Jewish ethical theory and practice. Serving as an introduction to Jewish ethics, it acquaints the student with the distinctive methodological issues involved and offers a sampling of Jewish positions on contemporary moral problems. The book features work from both traditionalist and liberal contributors, making this the only volume which encompasses the full range of contemporary Jewish ethical perspectives. Writers such as Harold Schulweis, Judith Plaskow, David Novak, David Hartman, and Blu Greenberg discuss law and ethics, natural law, humility, justice, sex and the family, euthanasia, and other vital issues relating to modern Judaism. Many of the readings appear here for the first time, making this important text the most timely sourcebook in its field. Uniquely qualified to reflect the high level and depth of contemporary work in this area of study, Contemporary Jewish Ethics and Morality is an essential contribution to any course dealing with Jewish ethics. (shrink)
The problems of evil and suffering have been extensively discussed in Jewish philosophy, and much of the discussion has centred on the Book of Job. In this study Oliver Leaman poses two questions: how can a powerful and caring deity allow terrible things to happen to obviously innocent people, and why have the Jewish people been so harshly treated throughout history, given their status as the chosen people? He explores these issues through an analysis of the views of (...) Philo, Saadya, Maimonides, Gersonides, Spinoza, Mendelssohn, Hermann Cohen, Buber, Rosenzweig, and post-Holocaust thinkers, and suggests that a discussion of evil and suffering is really a discussion about our relationship with God. (shrink)
The purpose of this paper is to present the Qumran conception of temple as an intermediate stage between the understanding of temple in Jewish eschatology and the Ismaili innerness of the “temple of light.” All of it in the frame of the conception of temple as Garden of Eden based in the “alternative memory”2 yielded by parabiblical priestly traditions.
The paper represents a consideration of the influence of G.W.F. Hegel’s dialectical method on Marx’s analysis of the debate over Jewish political rights in 19th Century Germany. As a follow on, I will consider how Marx’s analytical insights and perversions on “The Jewish Ques- tion” may provide us with guidance towards an enriched understanding of the currently confounded standoff be- tween the State of Israel and the Palestinian indepen- dence movement.
This essay examines the relevance of eschatological themes to the political theory of Michael Walzer. A distinctive eschatological hope is identified, which functions as a guide to thought throughout Walzer's writings, even though he seldom expresses it (and sometimes denies it). This analysis of Walzer's work demonstrates that eschatology is relevant to the contemporary discussion of justice, and conversely, that contemporary political theory can be a guide for the construction and evaluation of theological doctrines of eschatology. Any eschatology that enters (...) into political debate in a modern, pluralistic society like the United States, however, must have at least one important characteristic: it must be informed by a profound sense of limitation. (shrink)
Traditional eschatology clashes with the theory of entropy. Trying to bridge the gap, Robert John Russell assumes that theology and science are based on contradictory, yet equally valid, metaphysical assumptions, each one capable of questioning and impacting the other. The author doubts that Russell's proposal will convince empirically oriented scientists and attempts to provide a viable alternative. Historical‐critical analysis suggests that biblical future expectations were redemptive responses to changing human needs. Apocalyptic visions were occasioned by heavy suffering in postexilic times. (...) Interpreted in realistic terms, they have since proved to be untenable. The expectation of a new creation without evil, suffering, and death is not constitutive for the substantive content of the biblical message as such. Biblical future expectations must be reconceptualized in terms of best contemporary insight and in line with a dynamic reading of the biblical witness as God's vision of comprehensive optimal well‐being that operates like a shifting horizon and opens up ever new vistas, challenges, and opportunities. (shrink)
Many studies written about the Jewish-Christian relationship are primarily historical overviews that focus on the Jewish background of Christianity, the separation of Christianity from Judiasm, or the medieval disputations between the two faiths. This book is one of the first studies to examine the relationship from a philosophical and theological viewpoint. Carefully drawing on Jewish classical sources, Novak argues that there is actual justification for the new relationship between Judaism and Christianity from within Jewish religious tradition. (...) He demonstrates that this new relationship is possible between religiously committed Jews and Christians without the two major impediments to dialogue: triumphalism and relativism. One of the very few books on this topic written by a Jewish theologian who speaks specifically to modern Christian concerns, it will provide the groundwork for a more serious development of Jewish-Christian dialogue in our day. (shrink)
This essay argues that schooling in Israel is tied too closely to ideology. This results in an indoctrinary orientation that contributes to divisiveness and imperils Israeli democracy. After reviewing and critiquing the roots of this orientation, I advance an alternative that understands education as an agent of the good rather than ideology. Israeli schooling requires a vision of goodness broad enough to encompass competing conceptions of Jewish life espoused by the majority as well as non-Jewish orientations affirmed by (...) various minorities. Such a vision can be grounded, I contend, in a democratic Jewish theology that emphasizes God as teacher rather than tyrant. (shrink)
This study charts the development of creed formulation in Judaism from its inception with Moses Maimonides (1135-1204) to the beginning of the 16th century, when systematic attention to the problem disappeared from the agenda of Jewish intellectuals. Kellner describes, analyzes, and compares the dogmatic systems of Maimonides, Duran, Crescas, Albo, Bibago, Abravanel, and many others, and provides English translations of several previously unexamined or untranslated texts.
This article examines the, hitherto comparatively unexplored, reception of Greek embryology by medieval Muslim jurists. The article elaborates on the views attributed to Hippocrates (d. ca. 375 BC), which received attention from both Muslim physicians, such as Avicenna (d. 1037), and their Jewish peers living in the Muslim world including Ibn Jumayʽ (d. ca. 1198) and Moses Maimonides (d. 1204). The religio-ethical implications of these Graeco-Islamic-Jewish embryological views were fathomed out by the two medieval Muslim jurists Shihāb al-Dīn (...) al-Qarāfī (d. 1285) and Ibn al-Qayyim (d. 1350). By putting these medieval religio-ethical discussions into the limelight, the article aims to argue for a two-pronged thesis. Firstly, pre-modern medical ethics did exist in the Islamic tradition and available evidence shows that this field had a multidisciplinary character where the Islamic scriptures and the Graeco-Islamic-Jewish medical legacy were highly intertwined. This information problematizes the postulate claiming that medieval Muslim jurists were hostile to the so-called ‘ancient sciences’. Secondly, these medieval religio-ethical discussions remain playing a significant role in shaping the nascent field of contemporary Islamic bioethics. However, examining the exact character and scope of this role still requires further academic ventures. (shrink)
Jewish ethics like Judaism itself has often been charged with being "particularistic," and in modernity it has been unfavorably compared with the universality of secular ethics. This charge has become acute philosophically when the comparison is made with the ethics of Kant. However, at this level, much of the ethical rejection of Jewish particularism, especially its being beholden to a God who is above the universe to whom this God prescribes moral norms and judges according to them, is (...) also a rejection of Christian (or any other monotheistic) ethics, no matter how otherwise universal. Yet this essay argues that Jewish ethics that prescribes norms for all humans, and that is knowable by all humans, actually constitutes a wider moral universe than does Kantian ethics, because it can include non-rational human objects and even non-human objects altogether. This essay also argues that a totally egalitarian moral universe, encompassing all human relations, becomes an infinite, totalizing universe, which can easily become the ideological justification (ratio essendi) of a totalitarian regime. (shrink)
The article is devoted to the historical-philosophical analysis of the problem of ambivalence as a fundamental principle of Derrida’s philosophical thinking. It shows how such primordial philosophical questions as ones of limits of philosophies and of limits of philosophy define the basic problem dimensions of Derridean conception. It consideres the correlation of the theme of marginality with both the problem of Derrida’s cultural self-identification and the idea of the metaphoricity of language as the initial premise of différance logic. Also the (...) article examines the role of transcendentalistic implications in Derridean thought that determine a his-torical and philosophical context of Derrida’s philosophy. The analogy between quasi-transcendental and metaphorical aspects of deconstructive thinking is drawn. The identifica-tion of Jewish and metaphorical in Derrida’s conception is demonstrated. The author introduces the concept of "literal metaphor" as the quintessence of Derrida’s philosophical thought which structures its basic forms, namely: aporia, hyperbole, question, commentary. (shrink)
Il est toujours tentant de diviser l'histoire de la recherche en époques, surtout lorsqu'un groupe ou une tendance s'en fait le repère avec la « troisième quête », fût-ce au prix de pratiques exégétiques et de présupposés méthodologiques pour le moins discutables . Divers modèles et figures du Christ surgissent de cette quête multiforme Jésus philosophe cynique itinérant, sapiential, homme de l'Esprit, prophète de la restauration d'Israêl, militant du changement social...), ce qui ne suffit pourtant pas à jeter le soupçon (...) sur tous les auteurs ou sur la totalité de leurs travaux dont certains, par leur connaissance du milieu juif contemporain et des mouvements historiques, éclairent singulièrement le contexte politique dans lequel s'inscrit le destin du Christ. Témoignant d'une « relative cohérence », la « troisième quête », par l'usage des sources , la question de l'eschatologie et la valorisation de la judéité de Jésus, ravive la question de l'enjeu théologiquement fort de la quête du Jésus historique.It is always temping to divide historical research into periods, especially when a group or a tendency makes the division with a “ third quest », even at the price of exegetical practices and methodological presuppositions at the least debatable . Diverse models and figures of Christ arise from this multiform quest . This does not suffice, however, to throw suspicion on all the authors or on all theïr works , some of whom, by their knowledge of the contemporaneous Jewish milieu and historical movements hed singular light on the political context in which the destiny of Christ was written. Giving witness to a “relative coherenc”, the « third quest “ by using sources , the question of eschatology, and the valorization of the jewishness of Jesus, gives new life to the question of the strong theological stakes involved with the quest of the historical Jesus. (shrink)
This article combines the disciplines of textual/linguistic analysis, anthropology, and perceptual psychology to examine selected ancient Jewish mystical texts that claim to describe the praxis for ascents into heaven and encounters with angelic spirits in order to reconstruct the psychosocial context of these literary works. Specifically, the article examines Hekhalot or "Divine Palaces" texts that deal with hydromancy, giving attention to their mythic–symbolic assumptions, their described preparatory and triggering rituals, and their accounts of the ASC (altered states of consciousness) (...) visions resulting from these rituals that are experienced by the practitioners. The article suggests that these accounts correlate with ASC practices identified in the literature and additionally suggests that although the mystical texts are written to resemble biblical accounts of revelatory experiences, the texts under consideration are more than works of fabulous imagination; they are literary artifacts of an actual ecstatic ASC praxis among the Jews of Late Antiquity. (shrink)
This paper depicts the meanings of human dignity as they unfold and evolve in the Bible and the "Halakhah". I posit that three distinct features of a Jewish conception of human dignity can be identified in contrast to core characteristics of a liberal conception of human dignity. First, the original source of human dignity is not intrinsic to the human being but extrinsic, namely in God. Second, it is argued that the "dignity of the people" has precedence over personal (...) autonomy and liberty, which are core liberal pillars. The third characteristic pertains to the potential conflict between personal autonomy and liberty, and God's commandments. The theoretical analysis of human dignity is then examined in light of several Supreme Court decisions in Israel during the 1990s. I illustrate that Jewish religious and secular-liberal conceptions pull in different directions in the rulings of liberal and religious Justices in Israel. (shrink)
This essay offers a Jewish approach to ethnography in religious ethics. Following the work of other ethnographers working in religious ethics, I explore how an ethnographic account of reproductive ethics among Haredi Jewish women in Jerusalem enhances and improves Jewish ethical discourse. I argue that ethnography should become an integral part of Jewish ethics for three reasons. First, with a contextual approach to guidance and application of law and norms, an ethnographic approach to Jewish ethics (...) parallels the way ethical decisions are made on a daily basis in Jewish communities. Second, ethnography bolsters the voices of those involved in ethical discourse. Third, ethnography facilitates the bridge between local ethical questions and global ethical discourse. (shrink)
The purpose of this essay is to show how, on a wide variety of issues, Rabbi Moshe Feinstein broke new ground with the established Orthodox rabbinic consensus and blazed a new trail in Jewish medical ethics. Rabbi Feinstein took power away from the rabbis and let patients decide their treatment, he opened the door for a Jewish approach to palliative care, he supported the use of new technologies to aid in reproduction, he endorsed altruistic living organ donation and (...) recognized brain death (thus laying the groundwork for Orthodox Jewish acceptance of heart transplantation), he downplayed the value of social worth in triage decisions, and was a fierce defender of the rights of the fetus. I develop broader theological principles from Rabbi Feinstein's ethical positions and compare them to those of his Jewish and Christian contemporaries. (shrink)
_ Source: _Volume 23, Issue 2, pp 236 - 255 In this article I compare some elements of Eric Gans’s thought with a few aspects of the philosophy of Hermann Cohen—first and foremost, Gans’s concept of the origin and Cohen’s concept of Ursprung—while revealing the deep affinity between these two lines of thinking.
SUMMARYThis article analyzes Hans Urs von Balthasar's account of the rise of modernism in his Apokalypse der deutschen Seele . Balthasar's narration of the history of eschatology and the rise of the modern age is critical preparation for his rejection of modernism. It is also a forerunner for his definition of German culture through anti-Semitic adversary-markers. According to Balthasar, in the 18th century there was a fall from a romantic age when German culture was Christian. In the 19th and 20th (...) century Balthasar sees a dramatic deterioration of religious and intellectual sensibilities and an alienation from these earlier foundations. Balthasar presents “the Jewish” as an adversary of these foundations. Balthasar's claims are here presented and critiqued.ZUSAMMENFASSUNGDer vorliegende Aufsatz betrachtet die Entstehungsgeschichte der Moderne, wie sie Hans Urs von Balthasar in seiner Apokalypse der deutschen Seele darstellt. Balthasars Verständnis der Geschichte der Eschatologie und der Entstehung des modernen Zeitalters ist kritische Vorarbeit für seine Ablehnung der Moderne. Balthasars Kulturkritik leitet auch zu einer Definition der deutschen Kultur durch antisemitische Feindmarkierung hin. Nach Balthasars Auffassung »entfremdete« sich die deutsche Kultur im 19. und 20. Jahrhundert »immer mehr von ihren Grundlagen« und brach damit mit einem romantischen 18. Jahrhundert, in dem die deutsche Kultur noch christlich war. Balthasar sieht im »Jüdischen« einen Feind der Grundlagen der deutschen Kultur. Balthasars Behauptungen werden im vorliegenden Aufsatz dargestellt und kritisch beurteilt. (shrink)
In this enlightening study, a noted scholar elucidates the distinguishing characteristics of the works of several Jewish thinkers of the Middle Ages. In addition to summaries of the main arguments and teachings of Moses Maimonides, Isaac Israeli, Judah Halevi, Abraham Ibn Daud, Hillel ben Samuel, Levi ben Gerson, Joseph Albo, and many others, the author offers insightful analyses and commentary. Of particular value to beginners, this volume is also an ever-relevant resource for many issues of scholarly debate.