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object:Maimonides
object:Moses Maimonides
class:author
subject class:Philosophy
subject:Philosophy

--- GOODREADS
  Born ::: Cardoba, Spain
  Died ::: October 10, 1204
  Genre ::: Philosophy, Religion & Spirituality
  Influences ::: Aristotle, Al-Farabi, Avicenna, Avempace, Averroes, Al-Ghazali (less)
  Moses ben-Maimon, called Maimonides and also known as ... Hebrew acronym for "Rabbi Moshe ben Maimon"), was a preeminent medieval Jewish philosopher and one of the greatest Torah scholars and physicians of the Middle Ages. He was born in Crdoba, Spain on Passover Eve, 1135, and died in Egypt (or Tiberias) on 20th Tevet, December 12, 1204.[6] He was a rabbi, physician and philosopher in Morocco and Egypt.

  His year of birth is disputed, with Shlomo Pines suggesting that he was born in 1138. He was born during what some scholars consider to be the end of the golden age of Jewish culture in Spain, after the first centuries of the Moorish rule. At an early age, he developed an interest in the exact sciences and philosophy. In addition to reading the works of Muslim scholars, he also read those of the Greek philosophers made accessible through Arabic translations. Maimonides was not known as a supporter of mysticism. He voiced opposition to poetry, the best of which he declared as false, since it was founded on pure invention - and this too in a land which had produced such noble expressions of the Hebrew and Arabic muse. This Sage, who was revered for his saintly personality as well as for his writings, led an unquiet life, and penned his classic works with the staff of the wanderer in his hand.[7] Maimonides studied Torah under his father Maimon, who had in turn studied under Rabbi Joseph ibn Migash.



--- WIKI
  Moses ben Maimon ( ), commonly known as Maimonides and also referred to by the acronym Rambam, was a medieval Sephardic Jewish philosopher who became one of the most prolific and influential Torah scholars of the Middle Ages. In his time, he was also a preeminent astronomer and physician. Born in Crdoba, Almoravid empire (present-day Spain) on Passover Eve, 1138, he worked as a rabbi, physician, and philosopher in Morocco and Egypt. He died in Egypt on December 12, 1204, whence his body was taken to the lower Galilee and buried in Tiberias. During his lifetime, most Jews greeted Maimonides' writings on Jewish law and ethics with acclaim and gratitude, even as far away as Iraq and Yemen. Yet, while Maimonides rose to become the revered head of the Jewish community in Egypt, his writings also had vociferous critics, particularly in Spain. Nonetheless, he was posthumously acknowledged as among the foremost rabbinical decisors and philosophers in Jewish history, and his copious work comprises a cornerstone of Jewish scholarship. His fourteen-volume Mishneh Torah still carries significant canonical authority as a codification of Talmudic law. He is sometimes known as "ha Nesher ha Gadol" (the great eagle) in recognition of his outstanding status as a bona fide exponent of the Oral Torah. Aside from being revered by Jewish historians, Maimonides also figures very prominently in the history of Islamic and Arab sciences and is mentioned extensively in studies. Influenced by Al-Farabi, Avicenna, and his contemporary Averroes, he became a prominent philosopher and polymath in both the Jewish and Islamic worlds.

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OBJECT INSTANCES [0] - TOPICS - AUTHORS - BOOKS - CHAPTERS - CLASSES - SEE ALSO - SIMILAR TITLES

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SEE ALSO


AUTH

BOOKS
Infinite_Library
The_Guide_for_the_Perplexed

IN CHAPTERS TITLE

IN CHAPTERS CLASSNAME

IN CHAPTERS TEXT
1.01_-_Historical_Survey
1.08_-_The_Historical_Significance_of_the_Fish
1.09_-_The_Ambivalence_of_the_Fish_Symbol
1.14_-_Bibliography
1.15_-_Index
5.03_-_ADAM_AS_THE_FIRST_ADEPT
A_Secret_Miracle
BOOK_II._--_PART_I._ANTHROPOGENESIS.
BOOK_II._--_PART_II._THE_ARCHAIC_SYMBOLISM_OF_THE_WORLD-RELIGIONS
BOOK_I._--_PART_II._THE_EVOLUTION_OF_SYMBOLISM_IN_ITS_APPROXIMATE_ORDER
ENNEAD_06.05_-_The_One_and_Identical_Being_is_Everywhere_Present_In_Its_Entirety.345
The_Act_of_Creation_text
the_Eternal_Wisdom

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Maimonides

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TERMS STARTING WITH

Maimonides, Moses. The Guide for the Perplexed, (tr.)

Maimonides, or Moses ben Maimon (1135-1204)

Maimonides. (Rambam) :::
See Rambam



TERMS ANYWHERE

Abravanel, Don Isaac: Exegete and philosopher (1437-1508), was born in Lisbon, Portugal, emigrated to Toledo, Spain, and after the expulsion settled in Italy. He wrote a number of philosophical works, among them a commentary on parts of the Guide. He follows in most of his views Maimonides but was also influenced by Crescas. -- M.W.

Almost all Jewish philosophers with the exception of Gabirol, ha-Levi, and Gersonides produce proofs for the existence of God. These proofs are based primarily on principles of physics. In the case of the Western philosophers, they are Aristotelian, while in the case of the Eastern, they are a combination of Aristotelian and those of the Mutazilites. The Eastern philosophers, such as Saadia and others and also Bahya of the Western prove the existence of God indirectly, namely that the world was created and consequently there is a creator. The leading Western thinkers, such as Ibn Daud (q.v.) and Maimonides employ the Aristotelian argument from motion, even to positing hypothetically the eternity of the world. Ha-LevI considers the conception of the existence of God an intuition with which man is endowed by God Himself. Crescas, who criticized Aristotle's conception of space and the infinite, in his proof for the existence of God, proves it by positing the need of a being necessarily existent, for it is absurd to posit a world of possibles.

A major medieval rabbi, physician, scientist, and philosopher, known by the acronym RaMBaM (Rabbi Moses ben Maimon). Born in Spain, Maimonides fled from persecution to Morocco and finally settled in Egypt. His Major works include a legal commentary on the Mishnah, a law code called Mishnah Torah, and the preeminent work of medieval Jewish rational philosophy, The Guide of the Perplexed.

Another means of revelation is prophecy. The authenticity of prophecy, says Saadia, is not based on the miracles by which it is demonstrated but on its intrinsic worth. Maimonides says the prophet must possess great intellectual ability, rich phantasy, and perfect ethical conduct; only then he may be called by the divine spirit.

Maimonides, Moses. The Guide for the Perplexed, (tr.)

Maimonides, or Moses ben Maimon (1135-1204)

Maimonides. (Rambam) :::
See Rambam


by Maimonides in his Mishna Thora. The Berith

Crescas, Don Hasdai: (1340-1410) Jewish philosopher and theologian. He was the first European thinker to criticize Aristotelian cosmology and establish the probability of the existence of an infinite magnitude and of infinite space, thus paving the way for the modern conception of the universe. He also took exception to the entire trend of the philosophy of Maimonides, namely its extreme rationalism, and endeavored to inject the emotional element into religious contemplation, and make love an attribute of God and the source of His creative activity. He also expressed original views on the problems of freedom and creation. He undoubtedly exerted influence on Spinoza who quotes him by name in the formulation of some of his theories. See Jewish Philosophy. Cf. H. A. Wolfson, Crescas' Critique of Aristotle, 1929. -- M.W.

Divine providence is admitted by all Jewish philosophers, but its extent is a matter of dispute. The conservative thinkers, though admitting the stability of the natural order and even seeing in that order a medium of God's providence, allow greater latitude to the interference of God in the regulation of human events, or even in disturbing the natural order on occasion. In other words, they admit a frequency of miracles. The more liberal, though they do not deny the occurrence of miracles, attempt to limit it, and often rationalize the numerous miraculous events related in the Bible and bring them within the sphere of the rational order. Typical and representative is Maimonides' view of Providence. He limits its extent in the sublunar world to the human genus only on account of its possession of mind. As a result he posits a graded Providence, namely, that the one who is more intellectually perfect receives more attention or special Providence. This theory is also espoused, with certain modifications, by Ibn Daud and Gersonides. Divine providence does by no means impair human freedom, for it is rarely direct, but is exerted through a number of mediate causes, and human choice is one of the causes.

Elijah, Aaron ben: Karaite exegete and philosopher (1300-1369). The Ez Hayyim, i.e. Tree of Size, his philosophical work, deals with all problems of philosophy and displays the influence of both Maimonides and of the teachings of the Mutazilites. -- M.W.

Guide for the Perplexed ::: Maimonides masterpiece of Jewish philosophy and theology, written from the perspective of an Aristotelian philosopher. (Heb. Moreh N'vuchim). See also Maimonides.

Halakhah ::: Literally means “Way of going” — but refers to Jewish law. Traditionally, the halakhah is made up of the Written Law, as recorded in the Pentateuch, and the oral law, which includes later responsa as well as established customs. During the period of the Temple the Sadducees denied the authority of the oral law; this view was also adopted later by the Karaites. However, the oral law was collected by Judah Ha-Nasi in the Mishnah, and the discussions of the amoraim are recorded in the Talmud. Subsequently Jewish law was codified in such works as the Mishneh Torah by Maimonides and the Shulhan Arukh compiled by Joseph Caro. While Orthodoxy claims to regard the halakhah as unchanging, both it and Progressive Judaism continue to adapt law to modern life, with different emphases.

Hence in its widest sense Scholasticism embraces all the intellectual activities, artistic, philosophical and theological, carried on in the medieval schools. Any attempt to define its narrower meaning in the field of philosophy raises serious difficulties, for in this case, though the term's comprehension is lessened, it still has to cover many centuries of many-faced thought. However, it is still possible to list several characteristics sufficient to differentiate Scholastic from non-Scholastic philosophy. While ancient philosophy was the philosophy of a people and modern thought that of individuals, Scholasticism was the philosophy of a Christian society which transcended the characteristics of individuals, nations and peoples. It was the corporate product of social thought, and as such its reasoning respected authority in the forms of tradition and revealed religion. Tradition consisted primarily in the systems of Plato and Aristotle as sifted, adapted and absorbed through many centuries. It was natural that religion, which played a paramount role in the culture of the middle ages, should bring influence to bear on the medieval, rational view of life. Revelation was held to be at once a norm and an aid to reason. Since the philosophers of the period were primarily scientific theologians, their rational interests were dominated by religious preoccupations. Hence, while in general they preserved the formal distinctions between reason and faith, and maintained the relatively autonomous character of philosophy, the choice of problems and the resources of science were controlled by theology. The most constant characteristic of Scholasticism was its method. This was formed naturally by a series of historical circumstances,   The need of a medium of communication, of a consistent body of technical language tooled to convey the recently revealed meanings of religion, God, man and the material universe led the early Christian thinkers to adopt the means most viable, most widely extant, and nearest at hand, viz. Greek scientific terminology. This, at first purely utilitarian, employment of Greek thought soon developed under Justin, Clement of Alexandria, Origin, and St. Augustine into the "Egyptian-spoils" theory; Greek thought and secular learning were held to be propaedeutic to Christianity on the principle: "Whatever things were rightly said among all men are the property of us Christians." (Justin, Second Apology, ch. XIII). Thus was established the first characteristic of the Scholastic method: philosophy is directly and immediately subordinate to theology.   Because of this subordinate position of philosophy and because of the sacred, exclusive and total nature of revealed wisdom, the interest of early Christian thinkers was focused much more on the form of Greek thought than on its content and, it might be added, much less of this content was absorbed by early Christian thought than is generally supposed. As practical consequences of this specialized interest there followed two important factors in the formation of Scholastic philosophy:     Greek logic en bloc was taken over by Christians;     from the beginning of the Christian era to the end of the XII century, no provision was made in Catholic centers of learning for the formal teaching of philosophy. There was a faculty to teach logic as part of the trivium and a faculty of theology.   For these two reasons, what philosophy there was during this long period of twelve centuries, was dominated first, as has been seen, by theology and, second, by logic. In this latter point is found rooted the second characteristic of the Scholastic method: its preoccupation with logic, deduction, system, and its literary form of syllogistic argumentation.   The third characteristic of the Scholastic method follows directly from the previous elements already indicated. It adds, however, a property of its own gained from the fact that philosophy during the medieval period became an important instrument of pedogogy. It existed in and for the schools. This new element coupled with the domination of logic, the tradition-mindedness and social-consciousness of the medieval Christians, produced opposition of authorities for or against a given problem and, finally, disputation, where a given doctrine is syllogistically defended against the adversaries' objections. This third element of the Scholastic method is its most original characteristic and accounts more than any other single factor for the forms of the works left us from this period. These are to be found as commentaries on single or collected texts; summae, where the method is dialectical or disputational in character.   The main sources of Greek thought are relatively few in number: all that was known of Plato was the Timaeus in the translation and commentary of Chalcidius. Augustine, the pseudo-Areopagite, and the Liber de Causis were the principal fonts of Neoplatonic literature. Parts of Aristotle's logical works (Categoriae and de Interpre.) and the Isagoge of Porphyry were known through the translations of Boethius. Not until 1128 did the Scholastics come to know the rest of Aristotle's logical works. The golden age of Scholasticism was heralded in the late XIIth century by the translations of the rest of his works (Physics, Ethics, Metaphysics, De Anima, etc.) from the Arabic by Gerard of Cremona, John of Spain, Gundisalvi, Michael Scot, and Hermann the German, from the Greek by Robert Grosseteste, William of Moerbeke, and Henry of Brabant. At the same time the Judae-Arabian speculation of Alkindi, Alfarabi, Avencebrol, Avicenna, Averroes, and Maimonides together with the Neoplatonic works of Proclus were made available in translation. At this same period the Scholastic attention to logic was turned to metaphysics, even psychological and ethical problems and the long-discussed question of the universals were approached from this new angle. Philosophy at last achieved a certain degree of autonomy and slowly forced the recently founded universities to accord it a separate faculty.

Joseph, Albo: (1380-1444) Jewish philosopher. His Ikkarim, i.e., Dogmas is devoted primarily to the problem of dogmatics. He differs with Maimonides who fixed the Articles of Creed at thirteen, and posits only three fundamental dogmas. Belief in the existence of God; Divine origin of the Torah; Reward and punishment. The others are of secondary importance. See Jewish Philosophy. -- M. W.

Leibowitz, Yeshayahu (1903-1994) ::: Orthodox scholar known for radio lectures on weekly Torah readings and on Maimonides.

Maimon, Moses ben: (better known as Maimonides) (Abu Imram Musa Ibn Maimun Ibn Abdallah) (1135-1204) Talmud commentator and leading Jewish philosopher during the Middle Ages. Born in Cordova, left Spain and migrated to Palestine in 1165 and ultimately 1160, settled in Fez, N. Africa, whence he settled in Fostat, Egypt. His Guide for the Perplexed (More Nebukim in Heb.; Dalalat al-hairin, in Arab.) contains the summa of Jewish philosophic thought up to his time. It is written in the spirit of Aristotelianism and is divided into three parts. The first is devoted to the problems of Biblical anthropomorphisms, Divine attributes, and exposition and criticism of the teachings of the Kalam; the second to the proof of the existence of God, matter and form, creatio de novo, and an exposition of prophecy; the third to God and the world including problems of providence, evil, prescience and freedom of the will, teleology, and rationality of the precepts of the Torah. Maimonides exerted great influence not only on the course of subsequent Jewish speculation but also on the leaders of the thirteenth century scholastic philosophy, Albertus Magnus and Thomas Aquinas. -- M.W.

miah) is listed as chief of the order. Maimonides

Mishna Thora. See Maimonides.

Mishnei Torah ::: Maimonides' codification of Jewish law.

Nabathean Agriculture was translated about 1860 by Orientalist Chwolsohn into German from the Arabic translation of the Chaldean, widely considered a forgery. The Jewish scholar Maimonides (1135-1204), however, spoke pointedly of it as a specimen of archaic literature, though he disagreed with its teachings. Chwolsohn describes the book as a complete initiation into the mysteries of the “pre-Adamite” nations, and a compendium of Chaldean and other ancient lore. But the book shows periods of incalculable duration and numberless dynasties preceding the so-called Adamic race. The doctrines propounded therein were originally told by Saturn to the Moon, who communicated them to her eidolon, who revealed them to the author of the original work, Qu-tamy.

of the Lord.” Maimonides in Moreh Nebuchim

Of the many theological doctrines included in this philosophy, there are to be noted those of the Torah and prophecy. The Torah is considered by all philosophers divinely revealed. The Sinaitic revelation was accomplished by means of a specially created voice which uttered the commandments. The Torah is therefore immutable and is eternal. Its purpose is to train men for a good life. According to Maimonides, the Torah aims at both the improvement of the soul and of the body. The first is accomplished the second by numerous laws which regulate the by inculcating right conceptions about God, and life of the individual and society.

On the whole, there can be distinguished two currents in the entire stream of Jewish philosophy which flowed for about five hundred years, the Oriental and the Occidental. The first was limited to the lands of the East, such as Babylonia and the neighboring countries, and the leading representatives of which were Saadia (q.v.) among the Rabbanites and Aaron ben Elijah (q.v.) among the Karaites. The second developed primarily in Spain and the Provence, and among its leading thinkers were Bahya (q.v.), Gabirol (q.v.), Maimonides (q.v.), Gersonides (q.v.) and Crescas (q.v.). Since Jewish philosophy, during a large part of its existence, was developed within the Arabic world, it consequently reflects the influence of the various systems of thought dominant within that sphere.

pp. 54-55.] According to Maimonides in his

Rambam (&

Re’shith (Hebrew) Rē’shīth [from rosh head, chief, principal, first, beginning] Beginning, headship, the most excellent or highest of a series; wisdom. The first word in the Bible (prefixed by the prepositional letter B, meaning in, through, or by means of). “The fathers . . . dreaded above all to have the esoteric and true meaning of the word Rasit [re’shith] unveiled to the multitudes; for if once the true sense of this sentence, as well as that of the Hebrew word asdt . . . were understood rightly, the mystery of the Christian trinity would have crumbled, carrying in its downfall the new religion into the same heap of ruins with the ancient Mysteries”; “Origen, Clemens Alexandrinus, Chalcidius, Methodius, and Maimonides, on the authority of the Targum of Jerusalem, the orthodox and greatest authority of the Jews, held that the first two words in the book of Genesis — b-rasit, mean Wisdom, or the Principle. And that the idea of these words meaning “in the beginning” was never shared but by the profane, who were not allowed to penetrate any deeper into the esoteric sense of the sentence” (IU 2:34, 35). The beginning of Genesis is quite correctly translated “by wisdom,” or “by means of wisdom,” (cf Fund 98-102). See also BERE’SHITH

Sabeanism was unquestionably the main religious belief of the ancient Chaldeans and Assyrians, but likewise the very foundation stone of practically all the great religions of all the great peoples of the past. Upon the authority of the Jewish scholar Maimonides, scholars have considered the Sabeans as an ancient race whose principal religion was that of star-worship and closely affiliated with the Babylonians and Syrians. But the Sabeans were not a race, but those who followed and practiced the divine astrological astrolatry of the hoariest antiquity. Mohammed in the Koran mentions a sect between the Jews and Christians called Sabi una — to whom certain privileges were granted; older Moslem theologians were agreed that the Sabeans possessed manuscripts which they regarded in the light of a revelation, and the Mandeans came under the same protection granted to the Sabeans; hence the Mandeans also came to be regarded as Sabeans. Another sect of polytheists, the Harranians (830 AD), also affiliated with the Sabeans and shielded themselves under the same privileges; they were a remnant of a Mesopotamian cult, and star-worship had a prominent place in their system.

Simon Glazer. New York: Maimonides Pub. Co.,

Teraphim (Hebrew) Tĕrāfīm The household, family, or domestic idols or gods of the Jews, popularly consulted for divination; in many respects closely similar to the lares and penates of the ancient Latins. Blavatsky cites Maimonides: “The worshippers of the Teraphim (the Jewish Oracles) ‘carved images and claimed that the light of the principal stars (planets) permeating these through and through, the angelic Virtues (or the regents of the stars and planets) conversed with them, teaching them many most useful things and arts.’ And Seldenus explains that the Teraphim were built and composed after the position of certain planets . . .” (SD 1:394).

The differences begin when the questions of the mode of creation and mediators between God and the world are dealt with. In these matters there are to be noted three variations. Saadia rejected entirely the theory of the emanation of separate intelligences, and teaches God's creation from nothing of all beings in the sublunar and upper worlds. He posits that God created first a substratum or the first air which was composed of the hyle and form and out of this element all beings were created, not only the four elements, the components of bodies in the lower world, but also the angels, stars, and the spheres. Bahya's conception is similar to that of Saadia. The Aristotelians, Ibn Daud, Maimonides, and Gersonides accepted the theory of the separate intelligences which was current in Arabic philosophy. This theory teaches that out of the First Cause there emanated an intelligence, and out of this intelligence another one up to nine, corresponding to the number of spheres. Each of these intelligences acts as the object of the mind of a sphere and is the cause of its movement. The tenth intelligence is the universal intellect, an emanation of all intelligences which has in its care the sublunar world. This theory is a combination of Aristotelian and neo-PIatonic teachings; Ibn Daud posits, however, in addition to the intelligences also the existence of angels, created spiritual beings, while Maimonides seems to identify the angels with the intelligences, and also says that natural forces are also called angels in the Bible. As for creation, Ibn Daud asserts that God created the hyle or primal matter and endowed it with general form from which the specific forms later developed. Maimonides seems to believe that God first created a substance consisting of primal matter and primal form, and that He determined by His will that parts of it should form the matter of the spheres which is imperishable, while other parts should form the matter of the four elements. These views, however, are subject to various interpretations by historians. Gabirol and Gersonides posit the eternal existence of the hyle and limit creation to endowing it with form and organization -- a view close to the Platonic.

The next step is to demonstrate God's unity for which various proofs are given. Saadia and the followers prove it from the conception of creator; the others, including Maimonides, deduce it from the concept of an unmoved mover from which His incorporeality is also deduced. The argument that harmony of the universe is due to one creator or one first cause is also frequently employed.

The origin, nature, and the continued existence or immortality of the soul is widely discussed in Jewish philosophy. As to origin, Saadia believes that each individual soul is created by God -- considering, of course, creation a continuous process -- and that it is of a fine spiritual substance. As to its faculties, he accepts the Aristotelian-Platonic division of the soul into three parts, namely, the appetitive, emotional, and cognitive. Ibn Daud thinks that the soul exists prior to the body potentially, i.e., that the angels endow the body with form; he further considers it a substance but says that it undergoes a process of development. The more it thinks the more perfect it becomes, and the thoughts are called acquired reason, it is this acquired reason, or being perfected which remains immortal. Maimonides does not discuss the origin of the soul, but deals more with its parts. To the three of Saadia he adds the imaginative and the conative. Gersonides' view resembles somewhat that of Ibn Daud, except that he does not speak of its origin and limits himself to the intellect. The intellect, says he, is only a capacity residing in the lower soul, and that capacity is gradually developed by the help of the Active Intellect into an acquired and ultimately into an active reason. All thinkers insist on immortality, but with Saadia and ha-Levi it seems that the entire soul survives, while the Aristotelians assert that only the intellect is immortal. Maimonides is not explicit on the subject, yet we may surmise that even the more liberal thinkers did not subscribe to Averroes' theory of unitas intellectus, and they believed that the immortal intellect is endowed with consciousness of personality. To this trend of connecting immortality with rational reflection Crescas took exception, and asserts that it is not pure thought which leads to survival, but that the soul is immortal because it is a spiritual being, and it is perfected by its love for God and the doing of good.

The problem of attributes gave rise to extensive discussions. In general, the attempt is made to convey some knowledge about God and yet maintain that His essence is inconceivable. The number of attributes varies with individual philosophers, from three of Bahya to eight of Ibn Daud. Saadia counts one, living, potent and wise as essential attributes; Bahya one, existent, and eternal. Ha-Levi substitutes living for existent. Ibn Daud adds to those of Saadia and Bahya three more: true, willing, and potent. Maimonides considers living, potent, wise, and willing as those agreed upon by philosophers. The difficulty, however, does not consist in the number but in their content, or in other words, how to speak of essential attributes and not to impair the simplicity of God's essence. Bahya was the first to assert that their content is negative, e.g., existent means not non-existent. He was followed in this by all others. Maimonides is especially insistent upon the negative meaning and asserts that they are to be applied to God and man in an absolute homonymic manner, i.e., there is no possible relation between God and other beings. Gersonides and Crescas, on the other hand, believe that the essential attributes are positive though we cannot determine their content. There are, of course, other attributes which are descriptive of His action, but these are not essential.

There is, however, greater difficulty in making freedom of the will compatible with divine prescience of human action. The question arises, does God know beforehand what man will do or not? If he does, it follows that the action is determined, or if man can choose, His knowledge is not true. Various answers were proposed by Jewish philosophers to this difficult problem. Saadia says that God's knowledge is like gazing in a mirror of the future which does not influence human action. He knows the ultimate result. Maimonides says that God's knowledge is so totally different from human that it remains indefinable, and consequently He may know things beforehand, and yet not impair the possibility of man to choose between two actions. Ibn Daud and Gersonides limit God's knowledge and say that He only knows that certain actions will be present to man for choice but not the way he will choose. Crescas is more logical and comes to the conclusion that action is possible only per se, i.e., when looked upon singly, but is necessary through the causes. Free will is in this case nominal and consist primarily in the fact that man is ignorant of the real situation and he is rewarded and punished for his exertion to do good or for his neglect to exert himself.

The view of freedom of the will and the soul influenced to a great extent the ethics of the Jewish philosophers. A large number of thinkers accepted the Aristotelian norm of the golden mean as the rule of conduct, but considered that the laws and precepts of the Torah help towards obtaining right conduct. Maimonides, however, stated that the norm of the mean is only for the average man, but that the higher man should incline towards an extreme good way in conduct. Crescas' view of the good way follows from the theory of the soul, he stresses the emotional element, namely the necessity of the love of the Good and the desire to actualize it in life.

Thirteen Principles ::: Statement of classical Jewish outlook by Maimonides.

to the contrary, that angels are incorporeal include Dionysius the Areopagite, John of Rochelle, Moses Maimonides,



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1:Hold firmly to your word. ~ Maimonides,
2:Silence is the maturation of wisdom. ~ Maimonides,
3:God who preceded all existence is a refuge. ~ Maimonides,
4:Commune with your own heart upon your bed, and be still. ~ Maimonides,
5:You must accept the truth from whatever source it comes. ~ Maimonides,
6:At times the truth shines so brilliantly that we perceive it as clear as day." ~ Maimonides Guide,
7:Teach thy tongue to say 'I do not know,' and thou shalt progress. ~ Maimonides,
8:One must receive the Truth from wheresoever it may come. ~ Maimonides, the Eternal Wisdom
9:In accordance with the divine wisdom, genesis can only take place through destruction. ~ Maimonides,
10:That which is produced with intention has passed over from non-existence to existence. ~ Maimonides,
11:God is identical with His attributes, so that it may be said that He is the knowledge, the knower, and the known. ~ Maimonides,
12:Since the words of the sages all deal with supernatural matters which are ultimate, they must be expressed in riddles and analogies. ~ Moses Maimonides,
13:Truth does not become more true by virtue of the fact that the entire world agrees with it, nor less so even if the whole world disagrees with it. ~ Maimonides,
14:Do not consider it proof just because it is written in books, for a liar who will deceive with his tongue will not hesitate to do the same with his pen. ~ Maimonides,
15:If a person studies too much and exhausts his reflective powers, he will be confused, and will not be able to apprehend even that which had been within the power of his apprehension. ~ Moses Maimonides,
16:The just suffer injury without returning it; they hear reproach without replying; they act only out of love and keep the serenity of their soul in the midst of torments. ~ Maimonides, the Eternal Wisdom
17:... prophecy is, in truth and reality, an emanation sent forth by Divine Being through the medium of the Active Intellect, in the first instance to man's rational faculty, and then to his imaginative faculty. ~ Maimonides,
18:When a person meditates on these matters and recognizes all the creations, the angels, the spheres, man, and the like, and appreciates the wisdom of the Holy One, blessed be He, in all these creations, he will add to his love for God. His soul will thirst and his flesh will long with love for God, blessed be He.
   He will stand in awe and fear from his humble, lowly, and base [nature] when he compares himself to one of the great and holy bodies, how much more so when comparing himself to the pure forms which are separate from matter and do not share any connection with it. He will see himself as a vessel full of embarrassment and shame, empty and lacking.
   ~ Maimonides,

*** WISDOM TROVE ***

*** NEWFULLDB 2.4M ***

1:Hold firmly to your word. ~ Maimonides,
2:Hold firmly to your word. ~ Maimonides,
3:Silence is the maturation of wisdom. ~ Maimonides,
4:Silence is the maturation of wisdom. ~ Maimonides,
5:Astrology is a disease, not a science. ~ Maimonides,
6:Anticipate charity by preventing poverty. ~ Maimonides,
7:Astrology is not an art, it is a disease. ~ Maimonides,
8:God who preceded all existence is a refuge. ~ Maimonides,
9:God who preceded all existence is a refuge. ~ Maimonides,
10:All forces that reside in the body are angels. ~ Maimonides,
11:A truth does not become greater by repetition. ~ Maimonides,
12:Everyone entrusted with a mission is an angel. ~ Maimonides,
13:God cannot be compared to anything. Note this. ~ Maimonides,
14:A wise man is a greater asset to a nation than a king. ~ Maimonides,
15:Commune with your own heart upon your bed, and be still. ~ Maimonides,
16:Gone too from the world, Averroes and Moses Maimonides, ~ James Joyce,
17:I will destroy my enemies by converting them to friends. ~ Maimonides,
18:One must receive the Truth from wheresoever it may come. ~ Maimonides,
19:The true work of God is all good, since it is existence. ~ Maimonides,
20:You must accept the truth from whatever source it comes. ~ Maimonides,
21:Commune with your own heart upon your bed, and be still. ~ Maimonides,
22:You must accept the truth from whatever source it comes. ~ Maimonides,
23:Nobody is ever impoverished through the giving of charity. ~ Maimonides,
24:In finances, be strict with yourself, generous with others. ~ Maimonides,
25:The goal of good health is to enable a person to acquire wisdom. ~ Maimonides,
26:[…] one should accept the truth from whatever source it proceeds. ~ Maimonides,
27:Teach thy tongue to say 'I do not know,' and thou shalt progress. ~ Maimonides,
28:Teach thy tongue to say 'I do not know,' and thou shalt progress. ~ Maimonides,
29:Let nothing which can be treated by diet be treated by other means. ~ Maimonides,
30:Newton was a judaic monotheist of the school of Maimonides ~ John Maynard Keynes,
31:Lose with truth and right rather than gain with falsehood and wrong. ~ Maimonides,
32:The risk of a wrong decision is preferable to the terror of indecision. ~ Maimonides,
33:For that which is without a beginning, a final cause need not be sought. ~ Maimonides,
34:Every man whose character traits all lie in the mean is called a wise man. ~ Maimonides,
35:In the realm of Nature there is nothing purposeless, trivial, or unnecessary ~ Maimonides,
36:No disease that can be treated by diet should be treated with any other means. ~ Maimonides,
37:What is lofty can be said in any language. What is mean should be said in none. ~ Maimonides,
38:God cannot be compared to anything. Note this. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
39:Man's obsession to add to his wealth and honor is the chief source of his misery. ~ Maimonides,
40:Your purpose...should always be to know...the whole that was intended to be known. ~ Maimonides,
41:The physician should not treat the disease but the patient who is suffering from it ~ Maimonides,
42:Silence is a fence around wisdom.~ Maimonides, in The Ethical Writings of Maimonides (Dover:1975),
43:There are eight rungs in charity. The highest is when you help a man to help himself. ~ Maimonides,
44:In accordance with the divine wisdom, genesis can only take place through destruction. ~ Maimonides,
45:That which is produced with intention has passed over from non-existence to existence. ~ Maimonides,
46:Giving is most blessed and most acceptable when the donor remains completely anonymous. ~ Maimonides,
47:In accordance with the divine wisdom, genesis can only take place through destruction. ~ Maimonides,
48:That which is produced with intention has passed over from non-existence to existence. ~ Maimonides,
49:For how long is it a duty to study the Law? To the day of death. ~ Maimonides, Mishneh Torah (c. 1180),
50:The true work of God is all good, since it is existence. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
51:It is man's duty to love and to fear God, even without hope of reward or fear of punishment. ~ Maimonides,
52:He who does not understand that a dead lion is more alive than a living dog will remain a dog. ~ Maimonides,
53:Nature, like Maimonides said, is mainly a good place to throw beer cans on Sunday afternoons. ~ Edward Abbey,
54:Do not imagine that these most difficult problems can be thoroughly understood by any one of us. ~ Maimonides,
55:For every force charged by God, may He be exalted, with some business is an angel put in charge. ~ Maimonides,
56:Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime. ~ Maimonides,
57:All attributes ascribed to God are attributes of His acts, and do not imply that God has any qualities. ~ Maimonides,
58:Inspire me with love for my art and for thy creatures. In the sufferer let me see only the human being. ~ Maimonides,
59:No matter how small his portion, let him rejoice in it.~ Maimonides, in The Ethical Writings of Maimonides (Dover:1975),
60:For that which is without a beginning, a final cause need not be sought. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
61:God is identical with His attributes, so that it may be said that He is the knowledge, the knower, and the known. ~ Maimonides,
62:Be angry only for a grave cause that rightly calls for indignation,’ Maimonides wrote in his Mishneh Torah. What ~ Simon Schama,
63:God is identical with His attributes, so that it may be said that He is the knowledge, the knower, and the known. ~ Maimonides,
64:It is better and more satisfactory to acquit a thousand guilty persons than to put a single innocent one to death. ~ Maimonides,
65:Management [ Providence ], knowledge, and intention are not the same when ascribed to us and when ascribed to God. ~ Maimonides,
66:Astrology is a sickness, not a science ... It is a tree under the shade of which all sorts of superstitions thrive. ~ Maimonides,
67:A scholar ... should turn his ears from the talk of the illiterate and not take it to heart. ~ Maimonides, Mishneh Torah (c. 1180),
68:The whole object of the Prophets and the Sages was to declare that a limit is set to human reason where it must halt. ~ Maimonides,
69:Work before eating, rest after eating. Eat not ravenously, filling the mouth gulp after gulp without breathing space. ~ Maimonides,
70:God's knowledge extends to things not in existence, and includes also the infinite. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
71:It is of great advantage that man should know his station, and not imagine that the whole universe exists only for him. ~ Maimonides,
72:No form remains permanently in a substance; a constant change takes place, one form is taken off and another is put on. ~ Maimonides,
73:An artisan busies himself with his work for three hours each day and spends nine hours in study. ~ Maimonides, Mishneh Torah (c. 1180),
74:Far from it be the notion that the Supreme Being is corporeal, having a material form. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
75:That which is produced with intention has passed over from non-existence to existence. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
76:The being which has absolute existence, which has never been and will never be without existence, is not in need of an agent. ~ Maimonides,
77:Those who grieve find comfort in weeping and in arousing their sorrow until the body is too tired to bear the inner emotions. ~ Maimonides,
78:Actions are divided as regards their object into four classes; they are either purposeless , unimportant , or vain , or good . ~ Maimonides,
79:It is man's duty to love and to fear God, even without hope of reward or fear of punishment. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
80:He, however, who begins with Metaphysics, will not only become confused in matters of religion, but will fall into complete infidelity. ~ Maimonides,
81:There are eight levels of charity.... The highest is when you strengthen a man's hand until he need no longer be dependent upon others. ~ Maimonides,
82:If one avoids haughtiness to the utmost extent and is exceedingly humble, he is termed a saint, and this is the standard of saintliness. ~ Maimonides,
83:To the totality of purposes of the perfect Law there belong the abandonment, depreciation, and restraint of desires in so far as possible. ~ Maimonides,
84:Man's shortcomings and sins are all due to the substance of the body and not to its form; while all his merits are exclusively due to his form. ~ Maimonides,
85:In the beginning we must simplify the subject, thus unavoidably falsifying it, and later we must sophisticate away the falsely simple beginning. ~ Maimonides,
86:We suffer from the evils which we, by our own free will, inflict on ourselves and ascribe them to God, who is far from being connected with them! ~ Maimonides,
87:Truth does not become more true by virtue of the fact that the entire world agrees with it, nor less so even if the whole world disagrees with it. ~ Maimonides,
88:Those who believe that... detailed rules originate in a certain cause, are as far from the truth as those who assume that the whole law is useless. ~ Maimonides,
89:Truth does not become more true by virtue of the fact that the entire world agrees with it, nor less so even if the whole world disagrees with it. ~ Maimonides,
90:Management [ Providence ], knowledge, and intention are not the same when ascribed to us and when ascribed to God. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
91:The first kind of evil is that which is caused to man by the circumstance that he is subject to genesis and destruction, or that he possesses a body. ~ Maimonides,
92:In so far as the soul is a force residing in the body; it has therefore been said that the properties of the soul depend of the condition of the body. ~ Maimonides,
93:When Maimonides says that the Messiah will come but that 'he may tarry,' we see the origin of every Jewish shrug from Spinoza to Woody Allen. ~ Christopher Hitchens,
94:Do not consider it proof just because it is written in books, for a liar who will deceive with his tongue will not hesitate to do the same with his pen. ~ Maimonides,
95:The more necessary a thing is for living beings, the more easily it is found and the cheaper it is; the less necessary it is, the rarer and dearer it is. ~ Maimonides,
96:Maimonides taught that it is better that 10 criminals go free than let one innocent man be executed. The Innocence Project represents that point of view. ~ Norman Lamm,
97:No form remains permanently in a substance; a constant change takes place, one form is taken off and another is put on. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
98:The same is the case with those opinions of man to which he has been accustomed from his youth; he likes them, defends them, and shuns the opposite views. ~ Maimonides,
99:Actions are divided as regards their object into four classes; they are either purposeless, unimportant, or vain, or good. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
100:A sensible man should not demand of me, or hope that when we mention a subject, we shall make a complete exposition of it. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
101:Be convinced that, if man were able to reach the end without preparatory studies, such studies would not be preparatory but tiresome and utterly superfluous. ~ Maimonides,
102:The being which has absolute existence, which has never been and will never be without existence, is not in need of an agent. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
103:A small amount of wine such as three or four glasses is of benefit for the preservation of the health of human beings and an excellent remedy for most illnesses. ~ Maimonides,
104:Astrology is a disease, not a science... It is a tree under the shadow of which all sorts of superstitions thrive. ... Only fools and charlatans lend value to it. ~ Maimonides,
105:We are obligated to be more scrupulous in fulfilling the commandment of charity than any other positive commandment because charity is the sign of a righteous man. ~ Maimonides,
106:The just suffer injury without returning it; they hear reproach without replying; they act only out of love and keep the serenity of their soul in the midst of torments. ~ Maimonides,
107:It is hard for a woman with whom an uncircumcised man has had sexual intercourse to separate from him. In my opinion this is the strongest of the reasons for circumcision. ~ Maimonides,
108:I believe with perfect faith that the Creator, blessed be his name, is not a body, and that he is free from all accidents of matter, and that he has not any form whatsoever. ~ Maimonides,
109:The soul is subject to health and disease, just as is the body. The health and disease of both . . . undoubtedly depend upon beliefs and customs, which are peculiar to mankind. ~ Maimonides,
110:According to Maimonides, one should always walk the King's Road, staying away from the extremes, neither surrendering completely to one's emotions nor rejecting them entirely. ~ Ilona Andrews,
111:Man's shortcomings and sins are all due to the substance of the body and not to its form; while all his merits are exclusively due to his form. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
112:To try to be at once a Lithuanian yeshiva and a New England prep school: that was the unspoken motto of the Maimonides School of Brookline, Mass., where I studied for 12 years. ~ Noah Feldman,
113:We suffer from the evils which we, by our own free will, inflict on ourselves and ascribe them to God, who is far from being connected with them! ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
114:The question, "What is the purpose thereof?" cannot be asked about anything which is not the product of an agent; therefore we cannot ask what is the purpose of the existence of God. ~ Maimonides,
115:Those who believe that... detailed rules originate in a certain cause, are as far from the truth as those who assume that the whole law is useless. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
116:Bit by bit they slipped back into their old strange talk. Maimonides, Yehuda Halevi’s Kuzari, Philosophy, Spinoza, and other such nonsense which went in one ear and out the other. ~ Sholom Aleichem,
117:The first kind of evil is that which is caused to man by the circumstance that he is subject to genesis and destruction, or that he possesses a body. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
118:The great sickness and the grievous evil consist in this: that all the things that man finds written in books, he presumes to think of as true-and all the more so if the books are old. ~ Maimonides,
119:Transient bodies are only subject to destruction through their substance and not through their form, nor can the essence of their form be destroyed; in this respect they are permanent. ~ Maimonides,
120:You must consider, when reading this treatise, that mental perception, because connected with matter, is subject to conditions similar to those to which physical perception is subject. ~ Maimonides,
121:In so far as the soul is a force residing in the body; it has therefore been said that the properties of the soul depend of the condition of the body. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
122:There are four different theories concerning Divine Providence; they are all ancient, known from the time of the Prophets, when the true law was revealed to enlighten these dark regions. ~ Maimonides,
123:All this is applicable to the intellectual faculties of man. There is a considerable difference between one person and another as regards these faculties, as is well known to philosophers. ~ Maimonides,
124:The more necessary a thing is for living beings, the more easily it is found and the cheaper it is; the less necessary it is, the rarer and dearer it is. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
125:If a person studies too much and exhausts his reflective powers, he will be confused, and will not be able to apprehend even that which had been within the power of his apprehension. ~ Moses Maimonides,
126:It is forbidden to dwell in the vicinity of any of those with an evil tongue, and all the more to sit with them and listen to their words.~ Maimonides, in The Ethical Writings of Maimonides (Dover:1975),
127:Medical practice is not knitting and weaving and the labor of the hands, but it must be inspired with soul and be filled with understanding and equipped with the gift of keen observation . . . ~ Maimonides,
128:As an old friend of mine once said when I brought him some interesting brownies, ‘You must accept the truth from whatever source it comes,’” she replied. “Haven’t you read your Maimonides? ~ Gregory Maguire,
129:Consequently he who wishes to attain to human perfection, must therefore first study Logic, next the various branches of Mathematics in their proper order, then Physics, and lastly Metaphysics. ~ Maimonides,
130:Contrast the experience with something worse and you cannot help feeling happy and grateful because... The change from trouble to comfort gives us more pleasure than uninterrupted comfort does. ~ Maimonides,
131:It is the function of the intellect to discriminate between the true and the false—a distinction which is applicable to all objects of intellectual perception. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
132:The difference between that which is ascribed to God and that which is ascribed to man is expressed in the words... "And your ways are not my ways." (Is. lv. 8-9) ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
133:The knowledge of God, the formation of ideas, the mastery of desire and passion, the distinction between that which is to be chosen and that which is to be rejected, all these man owes to his form. ~ Maimonides,
134:The philosophers likewise assume that in Nature there is nothing in vain, so that everything that is not the product of human industry serves a certain purpose, which may be known or unknown to us. ~ Maimonides,
135:The key to the understanding and to the full comprehension of all that the Prophets have said is found in the knowledge of the figures, their general ideas, and the meaning of each word they contain. ~ Maimonides,
136:Now, we occupy a lowly position, both in space and rank in comparison with the heavenly sphere, and the Almighty is Most High not in space, but with respect to absolute existence, greatness and power. ~ Maimonides,
137:It is thus necessary to examine all things according to their essence, to infer from every species such true and well established propositions as may assist us in the solution of metaphysical problems. ~ Maimonides,
138:Eliphas never abandoned his belief that the fate of man is the result of justice, that we do not know all our shortcomings for which we are punished, nor the way how we incur the punishment through them. ~ Maimonides,
139:There is no difference between the worry of a human mother and an animal mother for their offspring. A mother's love does not derive from the intellect but from the emotions, in animals just as in humans. ~ Maimonides,
140:It should not be believed that all beings exist for the sake of the existence of man. On the contrary, all the other beings too have been intended for their own sakes and not for the sake of anything else. ~ Maimonides,
141:The more we desire for that which is superfluous, the more we meet with difficulties; our strength and possessions are spent in unnecessary things, and are wanting when required for that which is necessary. ~ Maimonides,
142:For it is said, "You shall strengthen the stranger and the dweller in your midst and live with him," that is to say, strengthen him until he needs no longer fall upon the mercy of the community or be in need. ~ Maimonides,
143:If all the places with which he is familiar and of which he hears reports follow improper paths, as in our times, ... he should remain alone in seclusion. ...~ Maimonides, in The Ethical Writings of Maimonides (Dover:1975),
144:... prophecy is, in truth and reality, an emanation sent forth by Divine Being through the medium of the Active Intellect, in the first instance to man's rational faculty, and then to his imaginative faculty. ~ Maimonides,
145:You will find that there is no other difference of opinion as regards any portions of the Universe, except that the philosophers believe in the Eternity of the Universe and we believe in the Creation. Note this. ~ Maimonides,
146:You will certainly not doubt the necessity of studying astronomy and physics, if you are desirous of comprehending the relation between the world and Providence as it is in reality, and not according to imagination. ~ Maimonides,
147:There shall always be much silence in a man's conduct. He shall speak only about a matter concerned with wisdom or matters that are necessary to keep his body alive.~ Maimonides, in The Ethical Writings of Maimonides (Dover:1975),
148:Further, there are things of which the mind understands one part, but remains ignorant of the other; and when man is able to comprehend certain things, it does not follow that he must be able to comprehend everything. ~ Maimonides,
149:The question, "What is the purpose thereof?" cannot be asked about anything which is not the product of an agent; therefore we cannot ask what is the purpose of the existence of God. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
150:Transient bodies are only subject to destruction through their substance and not through their form, nor can the essence of their form be destroyed; in this respect they are permanent. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
151:All the evils that men cause to each other because of certain desires, or opinions or religious principles, are rooted in ignorance. [All hatred would come to an end] when the earth was flooded with the knowledge of God. ~ Maimonides,
152:It is namely distinctly stated in Scripture and handed down by tradition that the first commandments communicated to us did not include any law at all about burnt offering and sacrifice. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
153:There are four different theories concerning Divine Providence; they are all ancient, known from the time of the Prophets, when the true law was revealed to enlighten these dark regions. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
154:Maimonides is of opinion that the arguments based on the properties of things in Nature are inadmissible, because the laws by which the Universe is regulated need not have been in force before the Universe was in existence. ~ Maim nides,
155:The fundamental imperative about idolatry was that worship was not to be paid to any created thing such as a messenger, a planet, a star, one of the four elements, or to anything produced from them. ~ Maimonides, Mishneh Torah (c. 1180),
156:How individuals of the same species surpass each other in these sensations and in other bodily faculties is universally known, but there is a limit to them, and their power cannot extend to every distance or to every degree. ~ Maimonides,
157:If they are wicked and sinful and do not allow him to reside there unless he mingle with them and follow their evil behavior, he should go out to caves, thickets, and deserts.~ Maimonides, in The Ethical Writings of Maimonides (Dover:1975),
158:We each decide whether to make ourselves learned or ignorant, compassionate or cruel, generous or miserly. No one forces us. No one decides for us, no one drags us along one path or the other. We are responsible for what we are. ~ Maimonides,
159:It is well known among physicians that the best of the nourishing foods is the one that the Moslem religion forbids, i.e., Wine. It contains much good and light nourishment. It is rapidly digested and helps to digest other foods. ~ Maimonides,
160:Thus they shall not miss this particular branch of the many branches of the Law and will have no need to roam and ramble about in other books in search of information on matters set forth in this treatise. ~ Maimonides, Mishneh Torah (c. 1180),
161:The so-called evils are evils only in relation to a certain thing, and that which is evil in relation to a certain existing thing, either includes the non-existence of that thing or the non-existence of some of its good conditions. ~ Maimonides,
162:The philosophers likewise assume that in Nature there is nothing in vain, so that everything that is not the product of human industry serves a certain purpose, which may be known or unknown to us. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
163:For it is said, "You shall strengthen the stranger and the dweller in your midst and live with him," that is to say, strengthen him until he needs no longer fall upon the mercy of the community or be in need. ~ Maimonides, Mishneh Torah (c. 1180),
164:The key to the understanding and to the full comprehension of all that the Prophets have said is found in the knowledge of the figures, their general ideas, and the meaning of each word they contain. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
165:The knowledge of God, the formation of ideas, the mastery of desire and passion, the distinction between that which is to be chosen and that which is to be rejected, all these man owes to his form... ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
166:Eliphas never abandoned his belief that the fate of man is the result of justice, that we do not know all our shortcomings for which we are punished, nor the way how we incur the punishment through them. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
167:There is one disease which is widespread, and from which men rarely escape: that every person thinks his mind more clever and more learned than it is. I have found that this disease has attacked many an intelligent person. — Maimonides ~ Erec Stebbins,
168:Every Israelite has a duty to study whether he is poor or rich, whether healthy or suffering, whether young or very old and in failing strength, even if he is poor and supported by charity or begs from door to door. ~ Maimonides, Mishneh Torah (c. 1180),
169:If a person studies too much and exhausts his reflective powers, he will be confused, and will not be able to apprehend even that which had been within the power of his apprehension. For the powers of the body are all alike in this respect. ~ Maimonides,
170:The more we desire for that which is superfluous, the more we meet with difficulties; our strength and possessions are spent in unnecessary things, and are wanting when required for that which is necessary. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
171:You will find that there is no other difference of opinion as regards any portions of the Universe, except that the philosophers believe in the Eternity of the Universe and we believe in the Creation. Note this. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
172:That which is impossible has a permanent and constant property, which is not the result if some agent, and cannot in any way change, and consequently we do not ascribe to God the power of doing what is impossible. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
173:He who immerses himself in sexual intercourse will be assailed by premature aging, his strength will wane, his eyes will weaken, and a bad odour will emit from his mouth and his armpits, his teeth will fall out and many other maladies will afflict him. ~ Maimonides,
174:If men possessed wisdom, which stands in the same relation to the form of man as the sight to the eye, they would not cause any injury to themselves or to others, for the knowledge of the truth removes hatred and quarrels, and prevents mutual injuries. ~ Maimonides,
175:Every man should view himself as equally balanced: half good and half evil. Likewise, he should see the entire world as half good and half evil.... With a single good deed he will tip the scales for himself, and for the entire world, to the side of good. ~ Maimonides,
176:A person who lives in a place where the norms of behavior are evil and the inhabitants do not follow the straight path should move to a place where the people are righteous and follow the ways of the good.~ Maimonides, in The Ethical Writings of Maimonides (Dover:1975),
177:The Prophets even express their surprise that God should take notice of man, who is too little and too unimportant to be worthy of the attention of the Creator; how, then, should other living creatures be considered as proper objects for Divine Providence! ~ Maimonides,
178:Whatever form it has, it [matter] will be disposed to receive another form; it never leaves off moving and casting off the form which it has in order to receive another. ...It is therefore clear that all corruption, destruction, or defect comes from matter. ~ Maimonides,
179:While one man can discover a certain thing by himself, another is never able to understand it, even if taught by means of all possible expressions and metaphors, and during a long period; his mind can in no way grasp it, his capacity is insufficient for it. ~ Maimonides,
180:All the great evils which men cause to each other because of certain intentions, desires, opinions, or religious principles, are likewise due to non-existence, because they originate in ignorance, which is absence of wisdom. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
181:There is no difference between the pain of humans and the pain of other living beings, since the love and tenderness of the mother for the young are not produced by reasoning, but by feeling, and this faculty exists not only in humans but in most living beings. ~ Maimonides,
182:After a long time the great and awful Name was forgotten and the people, men, women and children, only recognized an image of wood or stone and the temple of wood or stone which they had been brought up from infancy to serve by bowing down. ~ Maimonides, Mishneh Torah (c. 1180),
183:Men frequently think that the evils in the world are more numerous than the good things; many sayings and songs of the nations dwell on this idea. ...Not only common people make this mistake, but even many who think they are wise. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
184:The fact that laws were given to man, both affirmative and negative, supports the principle, that God's knowledge of future events does not change their character. The great doubt that presents itself to our mind is the result of the insufficiency of our intellect. ~ Maimonides,
185:Even the existence of this corporeal element, low as it in reality is, because it is the source of death and all evils, is likewise good for the permanence of the Universe and the continuation of the order of things, so that one thing departs and the other succeeds. ~ Maimonides,
186:The so-called evils are evils only in relation to a certain thing, and that which is evil in relation to a certain existing thing, either includes the non-existence of that thing or the non-existence of some of its good conditions. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
187:The business conduct of the disciples of wise men is truthful and faithful.... He does not allow himself to be made a surety or a guarantor and does not accept the power of attorney.... He lends money and is gracious. He shall not take away business from his fellow man. ~ Maimonides,
188:Do not imagine that what we have said of the insufficiency of our understanding and of its limited extent is an assertion founded only on the Bible: for philosophers likewise assert the same, and perfectly understand it,- without having regard to any religion or opinion. ~ Maimonides,
189:One should see the world, and see himself as a scale with an equal balance of good and evil. When he does one good deed the scale is tipped to the good - he and the world is saved. When he does one evil deed the scale is tipped to the bad - he and the world is destroyed. ~ Maimonides,
190:In accordance with the divine wisdom, genesis can only take place through destruction, and without destruction of the individual members of the species the species themselves would not exist permanently. Thus the true kindness, and beneficence, and goodness of God is clear. ~ Maimonides,
191:Every ignoramus imagines that all that exists, exists with a view to his individual sake; it is as if there were nothing that exists except him. And if something happens to him that is contrary to what he wishes, he makes the trenchant judgement that all that exists is an evil. ~ Maimonides,
192:Abraham was the first to teach the Unity of God, to establish the faith, to cause it to remain among coming generations, and to win his fellow-men to his doctrine; as Scripture says of him: "I know him, that he will command," &c. (Gen. xviii. 19) ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
193:First Theory . There is no Providence at all for anything in the Universe; all parts of the Universe, the heavens and what they contain, owe their origin to accident and chance; there exists no being that rules and governs them or provides for them. This is the theory of Epicurus. ~ Maimonides,
194:In the past some of the most influential Jewish, Christian and Muslim theologians, such as Maimonides, Aquinas and Ibn Sina, made it clear that it was very difficult to speak about God, because when we confront the ultimate, we are at the end of what words or thoughts can do. ~ Karen Armstrong,
195:Maimonides likewise recommended immediate vomiting after consuming suspect food and praised rooster dung as one of the most effective means to bring this about. “It is said that excrements of roosters have a specific property to eliminate every poison by vomiting,” he proclaimed. ~ Eleanor Herman,
196:The second class of evils comprises such evils as people cause to each other, when, e.g. , some of them use their strength against others. These evils are more numerous than those of the first kind... they likewise originate in ourselves, though the sufferer himself cannot avert them. ~ Maimonides,
197:If men possessed wisdom, which stands in the same relation to the form of man as the sight to the eye, they would not cause any injury to themselves or to others, for the knowledge of the truth removes hatred and quarrels, and prevents mutual injuries. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
198:Maimonides therefore undertook to compile a complete code, which would contain, in the language and style of the Mishnah, and without discussion, the whole of the Written and the Oral Law, all the precepts recorded in the Talmud, Sifra, Sifre and Tosefta, and the decisions of the Geonim. ~ Maim nides,
199:The theory that Divine Providence does not extend to man, and that there is no difference between man and other animals, implies very bad notions about God; it disturbs all social order, removes and destroys all the moral and intellectual virtues of man. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
200:The Prophets even express their surprise that God should take notice of man, who is too little and too unimportant to be worthy of the attention of the Creator; how, then, should other living creatures be considered as proper objects for Divine Providence! ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
201:Whatever form it has, it [matter] will be disposed to receive another form; it never leaves off moving and casting off the form which it has in order to receive another. ...It is therefore clear that all corruption, destruction, or defect comes from matter. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
202:If I had omitted setting down something of that which has appeared to me as clear, so that the knowledge would perish when I perish, as is inevitable, I should have considered that conduct as extremely cowardly with regard to you and everyone who is perplexed. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
203:Just as a person is commanded to honor and revere his father, so he is under an obligation to honor and revere his teacher, even to a greater extent than his father; for his father gave him life in this world, while his teacher instructs him in wisdom, secures for him life in the world to come. ~ Maimonides,
204:It is possible that the meaning of wisdom in Hebrew indicates aptitude for stratagems and the application of thought in such a way that the stratagems and ruses may be used in achieving either rational or moral virtues, or in achieving skill in a practical art, or in working evil and wickedness. ~ Maimonides,
205:The fact that laws were given to man, both affirmative and negative, supports the principle, that God's knowledge of future events does not change their character. The great doubt that presents itself to our mind is the result of the insufficiency of our intellect. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
206:Even the existence of this corporeal element, low as it in reality is, because it is the source of death and all evils, is likewise good for the permanence of the Universe and the continuation of the order of things, so that one thing departs and the other succeeds. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
207:The Torah sage ... does not encroach upon another's occupation, nor does he ever cause someone discomfort. The rule is that he should be among the pursued and not the pursuers, among those who accept humiliation but not among those who humiliate others.~ Maimonides, in The Ethical Writings of Maimonides (Dover:1975),
208:Know that for the human mind there are certain objects of perception which are within the scope of its nature and capacity; on the other hand, there are, amongst things which actually exist, certain objects which the mind can in no way and by no means grasp: the gates of perception are closed against it. ~ Maimonides,
209:After having explained this division, I contend that no intelligent person can assume that any of the actions of God can be vain, purposeless, or unimportant. According to our view and the view of all that follow the Law of Moses, all actions of God are "exceedingly good." ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
210:In accordance with the divine wisdom, genesis can only take place through destruction, and without destruction of the individual members of the species the species themselves would not exist permanently. Thus the true kindness, and beneficence, and goodness of God is clear. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
211:First Theory.—There is no Providence at all for anything in the Universe; all parts of the Universe, the heavens and what they contain, owe their origin to accident and chance; there exists no being that rules and governs them or provides for them. This is the theory of Epicurus... ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
212:The second class of evils comprises such evils as people cause to each other, when, e.g., some of them use their strength against others. These evils are more numerous than those of the first kind... they likewise originate in ourselves, though the sufferer himself cannot avert them. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
213:At times the truth shines so brilliantly that we perceive it as clear as day. Our nature and habit then draw a veil over our perception, and we return to a darkness almost as dense as before. We are like those who, though beholding frequent flashes of lightning, still find themselves in the thickest darkness of the night. ~ Maimonides,
214:Now I wonder what our knowledge has in common with God's knowledge according to those who treat God's knowledge... Is there anything else common to both besides the mere name? ...there is an essential distinction between His knowledge and ours, like the distinction between the substance of the heavens and that of the earth. ~ Maimonides,
215:I had learned something, something not found in Hippocrates, Maimonides, or Osler: the physician's duty is not to stave off death or return patients to their old lives, but to take into our arms a patient and family whose lives have disintegrated and work until they can stand back up and face, and make sense of, their own existence. ~ Paul Kalanithi,
216:A man shall not be full of laughter and mockery, nor sad and mournful, but joyful. ... His desire shall not be so great that he rushes for wealth, nor shall he be lazy and refrain from working. But he shall live in contentment, have a modest occupation, and be occupied mainly with the Torah.~ Maimonides, in The Ethical Writings of Maimonides (Dover:1975),
217:The evil into which these philosophers have fallen is greater than that from which they sought to escape, because they refuse to say that God neglects or forgets a thing, and yet they maintain that His knowledge is imperfect, that He is ignorant of what is going on here on earth, that He does not perceive it. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
218:The soul, when accustomed to superfluous things, acquires a strong habit of desiring things which are neither necessary for the preservation of the individual nor for that of the species. This desire is without limit, whilst those which are necessary are few in number and restricted within certain limits; but what is superfluous is without end. ~ Maimonides,
219:Another fundamental principle taught by the Law of Moses is this: Wrong cannot be ascribed to God in any way whatever; all evils and afflictions as well as all kinds of happiness of man, whether they concern one individual or a community, are distributed according to justice; they are the result of strict judgement that admits no wrong whatever. ~ Maimonides,
220:Those who desire to be men in truth, and not brutes, having only the appearance and shape of men, must constantly endeavor to reduce the wants of the body, such as eating, love, drinking, anger, and all manners originating in lust and passion; they must feel ashamed of them and set limits to them for themselves. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
221:The generation of Isaiah did not require the detailed description; his account, "I saw the Lord," &c., sufficed. The generation of the Babylonian exile wanted to learn all the details. ...Isaiah was so familiar with it that he did not consider it necessary to communicate it to others as a new thing, especially as it was well known to the intelligent. ~ Maimonides,
222:This is the way how we have to understand the accounts of trials; we must not think that God desires to examine us and to try us in order to know what He did not know before. Far is this from Him; He is far above that which ignorant and foolish people imagine concerning Him, in the evil of their thoughts. Note this. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
223:This must be our belief when we have a correct knowledge of our own self, and comprehend the true nature of everything; we must be content, and not trouble our mind with seeking a certain final cause for things that have none, or have no other final cause but their own existence, which depends on the Will of God, or, if you prefer, on the Divine Wisdom. ~ Maimonides,
224:Now I wonder what our knowledge has in common with God's knowledge according to those who treat God's knowledge... Is there anything else common to both besides the mere name? ...there is an essential distinction between His knowledge and ours, like the distinction between the substance of the heavens and that of the earth. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
225:The prophet Isaiah ... points out what will be the cause of this change; for he says that hatred, quarrel, and fighting will come to an end, because men will have a true knowledge of God. "They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters which cover the sea" (Isa. xi. ver. 9) Note it. ~ Maimonides,
226:He who thinks he can have flesh and bones without being subject to any external influence, or any accidents of matter, unconsciously wishes to reconcile two opposites, viz., to be at the same time subject and not subject to change. If man were never subject to change there could be no generation; there would be one single being, but no individuals forming a species. ~ Maimonides,
227:To sum up: I am the man who when the concern pressed him and his way was straitened and he could find no other device by which to teach a demonstrable truth other than by giving satisfaction to a single virtuous man while displeasing ten thousand ignoramuses - I am he who prefers to address that single man by himself, and I do not heed the blame of those many creatures. ~ Maimonides,
228:According to the theory of those weak minded persons, man is more perfect than his Creator. For what man says or does has a certain object, whilst the actions of God are different; He commands us to do what is of no use to us, and forbids us to do what is harmless. Far be this! On the contrary, the sole object of the Law is to benefit us. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
229:But if I did not know what I wanted, I had learned something, something not found in Hippocrates, Maimonides, or Osler: the physician’s duty is not to stave off death or return patients to their old lives, but to take into our arms a patient and family whose lives have disintegrated and work until they can stand back up and face, and make sense of, their own existence. ~ Paul Kalanithi,
230:Anticipate charity by preventing poverty; assist the reduced fellow man, either by a considerable gift or a sum of money or by teaching him a trade or by putting him in the way of business so that he may earn an honest livelihood and not be forced to the dreadful alternative of holding out his hand for charity. This is the highest step and summit of charity's golden ladder. ~ Maimonides,
231:Rabbi Moses ben Maimon (1135–1204, also known as Maimonides), put it: Every time you find in our books a tale the reality of which seems impossible, a story which is repugnant both to reason and common sense, then be sure that tale contains a profound allegory veiling a deeply mysterious truth…and the greater the absurdity of the letter the deeper the wisdom of the spirit.16 ~ Dean Radin,
232:He will punish all the evil deeds of men, although they have not been prohibited by a prophet, if common sense warns against them, as e.g., injustice and violence. ...it is distinctly added that he who does a good thing without being commanded, receives nevertheless his reward. The same principle is expressed in all the sayings of our Sages. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
233:According to Maimonides, the moral faculty would, in fact, not have been required, if man had remained a purely rational being. It is only through the senses that “the knowledge of good and evil” has become indispensable. The narrative of Adam’s fall is, according to Maimonides, an allegory representing the relation which exists between sensation, moral faculty, and intellect. ~ Maim nides,
234:The error of the ignorant goes so far as to say that God's power is insufficient, because he has given to this Universe the properties which they imagine cause these great evils, and which do not help all evil-disposed persons to obtain the evil which they seek, and to bring their evil souls to the aim of their desires, though these, as we have shown, are really without limit. ~ Maimonides,
235:Another fundamental principle taught by the Law of Moses is this: Wrong cannot be ascribed to God in any way whatever; all evils and afflictions as well as all kinds of happiness of man, whether they concern one individual or a community, are distributed according to justice; they are the result of strict judgement that admits no wrong whatever. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
236:God is not good, or wise, or intelligent anyway that we know. So, people like Maimonides in the Jewish tradition, Eboncina in the Muslim tradition, Thomas Aquinas in the Christian tradition, insisted that we couldn't even say that God existed because our concept of existence is far too limited and they would have been horrified by the ease with which we talk about God today. ~ Karen Armstrong,
237:The soul, when accustomed to superfluous things, acquires a strong habit of desiring things which are neither necessary for the preservation of the individual nor for that of the species. This desire is without limit, whilst those which are necessary are few in number and restricted within certain limits; but what is superfluous is without end... ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
238:The generation of Isaiah did not require the detailed description; his account, "I saw the Lord," &c., sufficed. The generation of the Babylonian exile wanted to learn all the details. ...Isaiah was so familiar with it that he did not consider it necessary to communicate it to others as a new thing, especially as it was well known to the intelligent. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
239:Even when a person suffers pain in consequence of a thorn having entered into his hand, although it is at once drawn out, it is a punishment that has been inflicted on him, and the least pleasure he enjoys is a reward; all this is meted out by strict justice; as is said in the Scripture, "all His ways are judgement" (Deut. xxxii. 4); we are only ignorant of the working of that judgement. ~ Maimonides,
240:I didn’t know. But if I did not know what I wanted, I had learned something, something not found in Hippocrates, Maimonides, or Osler: the physician’s duty is not to stave off death or return patients to their old lives, but to take into our arms a patient and family whose lives have disintegrated and work until they can stand back up and face, and make sense of, their own existence. ~ Paul Kalanithi,
241:This must be our belief when we have a correct knowledge of our own self, and comprehend the true nature of everything; we must be content, and not trouble our mind with seeking a certain final cause for things that have none, or have no other final cause but their own existence, which depends on the Will of God, or, if you prefer, on the Divine Wisdom. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
242:You will see the mercy of God toward His creatures, how He has provided that which is required, in proper proportions, and treated all individual beings of the same species with perfect equality. ...for it is an act of great and perfect goodness that He gave us existence; and the creation of the controlling faculty in animals is a proof of His mercy towards them, as has been shown by us. ~ Maimonides,
243:Divine Providence is connected with Divine intellectual influence, and the same beings which are benefited by the latter so as to become intellectual, and to comprehend things comprehensible to rational beings, are also under the control of Divine Providence, which examines all their deeds with a view of rewarding or punishing them. ...the method of which our mind is incapable of understanding. ~ Maimonides,
244:The prophet [ Isaiah ]... points out what will be the cause of this change; for he says that hatred, quarrel, and fighting will come to an end, because men will have a true knowledge of God. "They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters which cover the sea" (Isa. xi. ver. 9) Note it. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
245:The error of the ignorant goes so far as to say that God's power is insufficient, because he has given to this Universe the properties which they imagine cause these great evils, and which do not help all evil-disposed persons to obtain the evil which they seek, and to bring their evil souls to the aim of their desires, though these, as we have shown, are really without limit. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
246:My object in adopting this arrangement is that the truths should be at one time apparent and at another time concealed. Thus we shall not be in opposition to the Divine Will (from which it is wrong to deviate) which has withheld from the multitude the truths required for the knowledge of God, according to the words, "The secret of the Lord is with them that fear Him." (Psalm 25:14) ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
247:If the whole earth is infinitely small in comparison with the sphere of the stars, what is man compared with all these created beings? How, then, could any one of us imagine that these things exist for his sake and benefit, and that they are his tools! This is a result of an examination of the corporeal beings: how much more so will be the result of an examination of the Intelligences! ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
248:Even when a person suffers pain in consequence of a thorn having entered into his hand, although it is at once drawn out, it is a punishment that has been inflicted on him, and the least pleasure he enjoys is a reward; all this is meted out by strict justice; as is said in the Scripture, "all His ways are judgement" (Deut. xxxii. 4); we are only ignorant of the working of that judgement. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
249:You will see the mercy of God toward His creatures, how He has provided that which is required, in proper proportions, and treated all individual beings of the same species with perfect equality. ...for it is an act of great and perfect goodness that He gave us existence; and the creation of the controlling faculty in animals is a proof of His mercy towards them, as has been shown by us. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
250:The Mutakallemim... apply the term non-existence only to absolute non-existence, and not to absence of properties. A property and the absence of that property are considered by them as two opposites, they treat, e.g. , blindness and sight, death and life, in the same way as heat and cold. Therefore they say, without any qualification, non-existence does not require any agent, an agent is required when something is produced. ~ Maimonides,
251:Abraham ... was sunk in Ur of the Chaldees among foolish idolaters. His father and mother and all the people worshipped the stars. ... He knew that all were mistaken and that what caused them to err was worship of the images which drove the Truth out of their minds. ... It was proper to destroy and smash the idols so that the people should not err by them like those who think there is no god save images. ~ Maimonides, Mishneh Torah (c. 1180),
252:Divine Providence is connected with Divine intellectual influence, and the same beings which are benefited by the latter so as to become intellectual, and to comprehend things comprehensible to rational beings, are also under the control of Divine Providence, which examines all their deeds with a view of rewarding or punishing them. ...the method of which our mind is incapable of understanding. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
253:It is natural for a man's character and actions to be influenced by his friends and associates and for him to follow the local norms of behavior. Therefore, he should associate with the righteous and be constantly in the company of the wise, so as to learn from their deeds. Conversely, he should keep away from the wicked who walk in darkness, so as not to learn from their deeds.~ Maimonides, in The Ethical Writings of Maimonides (Dover:1975),
254:There is no difference whether a person stand at the centre of the earth or at the highest point of the ninth sphere... he is no further away from God in the one case, or nearer to Him in the other; those only approach Him who obtain a knowledge of Him; while those who remain ignorant of Him recede from Him. ...I shall further elucidate... what constitutes the difference in our perception of God. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
255:Every one of the six hundred and thirteen precepts serves to inculcate some truth, to remove some erroneous opinion, to establish proper relations in society, to diminish evil, to train in good manners, or to warn against bad habits. All this depends on three things: opinions, morals, and social conduct. ...these three principles suffice for assigning a reason for every one of the Divine commandments. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
256:Zohar-kabbalah is heresy of the most pernicious kind. Yet it is a fact that this kind of mystic pantheism exercises a curious appeal to very clever people whose customary approach to thought is soberly rational. By a remarkable paradox, the current of speculation which was to carry Spinoza out of Judaism brought him to pantheism too, so that he was the end-product both of the rationalism of Maimonides and the anti-rationalism of his opponents. ~ Paul Johnson,
257:The corporeal element in man is a large screen and partition that prevents him from perfectly perceiving abstract ideals; this would be the case even if the corporeal element were as pure and superior as the substance of the spheres ; how much more must this be the case with our dark and opaque body. However great the exertion of our mind may be to comprehend the Divine Being or any of the ideals, we find a screen and partition between God and us. ~ Maimonides,
258:He [ Ezekiel ] further says, "As the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud in the day of the rain, so was the appearance of the brightness round about. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory," (i. 28). The substance and the true essence of the bow described here is well known. The simile and comparison is in this case very extraordinary, and is undoubtedly part of the prophecy; and note it well. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
259:It was necessary that the very noble form of man, which is the image and likeness of God... should be joined to the substance of dust and darkness, the source of all defect and loss. For these reasons the Creator gave to the form of man power, rule, and dominion over the substance;—the form can subdue the substance, refuse the fulfillment of its desires, and reduce them, as far as possible, to a just and proper measure. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
260:Know that the difficulties which lead to confusion in the question what is the purpose of the Universe or of any of its parts, arise from two causes: first, man has an erroneous idea of himself, and believes that the whole world exists only for his sake; secondly, he is ignorant both about the nature of the sublunary world, and about the Creator's intention to give existence to all beings whose existence is possible, because existence is undoubtedly good. ~ Maimonides,
261:It is not unreasonable to assume that the works of God, their existence and preceding non-existence, are the result of His wisdom, but we are unable to understand many of the ways of His Wisdom in His works. On this principle the whole Law of Moses is based; it begins with this principle: "And God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good" (Gen. i. 31); and it ends with this principle: "The Rock, perfect is His work" (Deut. xxxii. 4). Note it. ~ Maimonides,
262:The Mutakallemim... apply the term non-existence only to absolute non-existence, and not to absence of properties. A property and the absence of that property are considered by them as two opposites, they treat, e.g., blindness and sight, death and life, in the same way as heat and cold. Therefore they say, without any qualification, non-existence does not require any agent, an agent is required when something is produced. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
263:The people who are abroad are all those that have no religion, neither one based on speculation nor one received by tradition. Such are the extreme Turks that wander about in the north, the Kushites who live in the south, and those in our country who are like these. I consider these as irrational beings, and not as human beings; they are below mankind, but above monkeys, since they have the form and shape of man, and a mental faculty above that of the monkey. ~ Maimonides,
264:It is no wrong or injustice that one has many bags of the finest myrrh and garments embroidered with gold, while another has not those things, which are not necessary for our maintenance; he who has them has not thereby obtained control over anything that could be an essential addition to his nature, but has only obtained something illusory or deceptive. ...This is the rule at all times and in all places; no notice should be taken of exceptional cases, as we have explained. ~ Maimonides,
265:When I have a difficult subject before me - when I find the road narrow, and can see no other way of teaching a well established truth except by pleasing one intelligent man and displeasing ten thousand fools - I prefer to address myself to the one man, and to take no notice whatever of the condemnation of the multitude; I prefer to extricate that intelligent man from his embarrassment and show him the cause of his perplexity, so that he may attain perfection and be at peace. ~ Maimonides,
266:I find it expressed in various passages of Scripture that the fact that God knows things while in a state of possibility, when their existence belongs to the future, does not change the nature of the possible in any way; that nature remains unchanged; and the knowledge of the realisation of one of several possibilities does not yet effect that realisation. This is likewise one of the fundamental principles of the Law of Moses concerning which there is no doubt nor any dispute. ~ Maimonides,
267:The corporeal element in man is a large screen and partition that prevents him from perfectly perceiving abstract ideals; this would be the case even if the corporeal element were as pure and superior as the substance of the spheres; how much more must this be the case with our dark and opaque body. However great the exertion of our mind may be to comprehend the Divine Being or any of the ideals, we find a screen and partition between God and us. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
268:Having concluded these introductory remarks I proceed to examine those expressions, to the true meaning of which, as apparent from the context, it is necessary to direct your attention. This book will then be a key admitting to places the gates of which would otherwise be closed. When the gates are opened and men enter, their souls will enjoy repose, their eyes will be gratified, and even their bodies, after all toil and labour, will be refreshed. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
269:In my larger work, the Mishnah Torah, I have contented myself with briefly stating the principles of our faith and its fundamental truths, together with such hints as approach a clear exposition. In this work, however, I address those who have studied philosophy and have acquired sound knowledge, and who while firm in religious matters are perplexed and bewildered on account of the ambiguous and figurative expressions employed in the holy writings. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
270:An ignorant man believes that the whole universe only exists for him: as if nothing else required any consideration. If, therefore, anything happens to him contrary to his expectation, he at once concludes that the whole universe is evil. If, however, he would take into consideration the whole universe, form an idea of it, and comprehend what a small portion he is of the Universe, he will find the truth. There are many ... passages in the books of the prophets expressing the same idea. ~ Maimonides,
271:Know that the difficulties which lead to confusion in the question what is the purpose of the Universe or of any of its parts, arise from two causes: first, man has an erroneous idea of himself, and believes that the whole world exists only for his sake; secondly, he is ignorant both about the nature of the sublunary world, and about the Creator's intention to give existence to all beings whose existence is possible, because existence is undoubtedly good. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
272:It is not unreasonable to assume that the works of God, their existence and preceding non-existence, are the result of His wisdom, but we are unable to understand many of the ways of His Wisdom in His works. On this principle the whole Law of Moses is based; it begins with this principle: "And God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good" (Gen. i. 31); and it ends with this principle: "The Rock, perfect is His work" (Deut. xxxii. 4). Note it. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
273:There is one [disease] which is widespread, and from which men rarely escape. This disease varies in degree in different men … I refer to this: that every person thinks his mind … more clever and more learned than it is … I have found that this disease has attacked many an intelligent person … They … express themselves [not only] upon the science with which they are familiar, but upon other sciences about which they know nothing … If met with applause … so does the disease itself become aggravated. ~ Maimonides,
274:For the elements have the property of moving back to their place in a straight line, but they have no properties which would cause them to remain where they are, or to move otherwise than in a straight line. The rectilinear motions of these four elements when returning to their original place are of two kinds, either centrifugal, viz., the motion of the air and the fire; or centripedal, viz., the motion of the earth, and the water; and when the elements have reached their original place, they remain at rest. ~ Maimonides,
275:It is no wrong or injustice that one has many bags of the finest myrrh and garments embroidered with gold, while another has not those things, which are not necessary for our maintenance; he who has them has not thereby obtained control over anything that could be an essential addition to his nature, but has only obtained something illusory or deceptive. ...This is the rule at all times and in all places; no notice should be taken of exceptional cases, as we have explained. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
276:I find it expressed in various passages of Scripture that the fact that God knows things while in a state of possibility, when their existence belongs to the future, does not change the nature of the possible in any way; that nature remains unchanged; and the knowledge of the realisation of one of several possibilities does not yet effect that realisation. This is likewise one of the fundamental principles of the Law of Moses concerning which there is no doubt nor any dispute. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
277:This idea is confirmed in Scripture; it is distinctly stated that one sole thing, fear of God, is the object of the whole Law with its affirmative and negative precepts, its promises and its historical examples, for it is said, "If thou wilt not observe to do all the words of this Law that are written in this book, that thou mayest fear this glorious and fearful name, the Lord thy God" (Deut. xxviii. 58) This is one of the two purposes of the Akedah (sacrifice or binding of Isaac). ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
278:Fourth Theory.—Man has free will; it is therefore intelligible that the Law contains commands and prohibitions, with announcements of reward and punishment. All acts of God are due to wisdom; no injustice is found in him, and he does not afflict the good. The Mu'tazila profess this theory, although they do not believe in man's absolute free will. They hold that God takes notice of the falling of the leaf and the destruction of the ant, and that his Providence extends over all beings. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
279:An ignorant man believes that the whole universe only exists for him: as if nothing else required any consideration. If, therefore, anything happens to him contrary to his expectation, he at once concludes that the whole universe is evil. If, however, he would take into consideration the whole universe, form an idea of it, and comprehend what a small portion he is of the Universe, he will find the truth. There are many... passages in the books of the prophets expressing the same idea. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
280:I have composed this work neither for the common people, nor for beginners, nor for those who occupy themselves only with the Law as it is handed down without concerning themselves with its principles. The design of this work is rather to promote the true understanding of the real spirit of the Law, to guide those religious persons who, adhering to the Torah, have studied philosophy and are embarrassed by the contradictions between the teachings of philosophy and the literal sense of the Torah. ~ Maimonides, Mishneh Torah (c. 1180),
281:Know that the figures employed by prophets are of two kinds: first, where every word which occurs in the simile represents a certain idea: and secondly, where the simile, as a whole, represents a general idea, but has a great many points which have no reference whatever to that idea: they are simply required to give to the simile its proper form and order, or better to conceal the idea: the simile is therefore continued as far as necessary, according to its literal sense. Consider this well. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
282:One should see the world, and see himself, as a scale with an equal balance of good and evil. When he does one good deed, the scale is tipped to the good — he and the world are saved. When he does one evil deed, the scale is tipped to the bad — he and the world are destroyed.’” “Interesting. Who said that, your grandmother?” “Maimonides. The great Jewish scholastic.” “I didn’t know you read Jewish philosophers.” “It is said, ‘You must accept the truth from whatever source it comes.’” “And who said that?” “Also Maimonides. ~ Gregory Maguire,
283:This gift... which God gave us in order to enable us to perfect ourselves, to learn and to teach, must not be employed in doing that which is for us most degrading and perfectly disgraceful... Those who employ the faculty of thinking and speaking in the service of that sense which is no honour to us, who think more than necessary of drink and love, or even sing of these things; they employ and use the divine gift in acts of rebellion against the Giver, and in transgression of his commandments. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
284:It is of great advantage that man should know his station, and not imagine that the whole universe exists only for him. We hold that the universe exists because the Creator wills it so; that mankind is low in rank as compared with the uppermost portion of the universe, viz., with the spheres and the stars; but, as regards the angels, there cannot be any real comparison between man and angels, although man is the highest of all beings on earth; i.e., of all the beings formed of the four elements. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
285:Second Theory.—Whilst one part of the Universe owes its existence to Providence and is under control of a ruler and governor, another part is abandoned and left to chance. This is the view of Aristotle about Providence... He holds that God controls the spheres and what they contain; therefore the individual beings in the spheres remain permanently in the same form. ...From the existence of the spheres other beings derive existence, which are constant in their species but not in their individuals. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
286:The chief object of the Law, as has been shown by us, is the teaching of truths; to which the truth of the creatio ex nihilo belongs. It is known that the object of the law of Sabbath is to confirm and to establish this principle, as we have shown in this treatise (Part II. chap. xxxi.) In addition to the teaching of truths the Law aims at the removal of injustice from mankind. We have thus proved that the first laws do not refer to burnt-offering and sacrifice, which are of secondary importance. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
287:Galen , in the third section of his book, "The Use of the Limbs," says correctly that it would be in vain to expect to see living beings formed of the blood of menstruous women and the semen virile, who will not die, will never feel pain, or will move perpetually, or shine like the sun. This dictum of Galen is part of the following more general proposition: Whatever is formed of matter receives the most perfect form possible in that species of matter; in each individual case the defects are in accordance with that individual matter. ~ Maimonides,
288:Those who wash their body and cleanse their garments whilst they remain dirty by bad actions and principles, are described by Solomon as "a generation that are pure in their own eyes, and yet are not washed from their filthiness; a generation, oh how lofty are their eyes!" &c. (Prov. xxx. 12-13). Consider well the principles which we mentioned... as the final causes of the Law; for there are many precepts, for which you will be unable to give a reason unless you possess a knowledge of these principles... ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
289:The strange and wonderful Book of Job treats of the same subject as we are discussing; its contents are a fiction, conceived for the purpose of explaining the different opinions which people hold on Divine Providence. ...This fiction, however, is in so far different from other fictions that it includes profound ideas and great mysteries, removes great doubts, and reveals the most important truths. I will discuss it as fully as possible; and I will also tell you the words of our Sages that suggested to me the explanation of this great poem. ~ Maimonides,
290:Know that for the human mind there are certain objects of perception which are within the scope of its nature and capacity; on the other hand, there are, amongst things which actually exist, certain objects which the mind can in no way and by no means grasp: the gates of perception are closed against it. Further, there are things of which the mind understands one part, but remains ignorant of the other; and when man is able to comprehend certain things, it does not follow that he must be able to comprehend everything. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
291:Spinoza follows Maimonides in rejecting the ordinary meanings which attach to words, and in asking his readers to attend, not to language, but to the ‘ideas’ which he is attempting to convey by means of it. Common usage is governed by the imagination, which associates words, not with clear and distinct ideas, but with the confused conceptions of experience. In the language of imagination nothing can be truly described, and nothing is more misleadingly rendered by the imagination than the ultimate subject matter of philosophical speculation – God himself ~ Roger Scruton,
292:Maimonides was a zealous disciple of Aristotle, although the theory of the Kalām might seem to have been more congenial to Jewish thought and belief. The Kalām upheld the theory of God’s Existence, Incorporeality, and Unity, together with the creatio ex nihilo. Maimonides nevertheless opposed the Kalām, and, anticipating the question, why preference should be given to the system of Aristotle, which included the theory of the Eternity of the Universe, a theory contrary to the fundamental teaching of the Scriptures, he exposed the weakness of the Kalām and its fallacies. ~ Maim nides,
293:The third class of evils comprise those which everyone causes to himself by his own action. This is the largest class, and is far more numerous than the second class. It is especially of these evils that all men complain, - only few men are found that do not sin against themselves by this kind of evil. ...This class of evil originates in man's vices, such as excessive desire for eating, drinking, and love; indulgence in these things in undue measure, or in improper manner, or partaking of bad food. This course brings diseases and afflictions upon the body and soul alike. ~ Maimonides,
294:The strange and wonderful Book of Job treats of the same subject as we are discussing; its contents are a fiction, conceived for the purpose of explaining the different opinions which people hold on Divine Providence. ...This fiction, however, is in so far different from other fictions that it includes profound ideas and great mysteries, removes great doubts, and reveals the most important truths. I will discuss it as fully as possible; and I will also tell you the words of our Sages that suggested to me the explanation of this great poem. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
295:The quest for this unwearied peace is constant and universal. Probe deeply into the teaching of Buddha, Maimonides, or a Kempis, and you will discover that they base their diverse doctrines on the foundation of a large spiritual serenity. Analyze the prayers of troubled, overborne mankind of all creeds, in every age-and their petitions come down to the irreducible common denominators of daily bread and inward peace. Grown men do not pray for vain trifles. When they lift up their hearts and voices in the valley of tears they ask for strength and courage and understanding. ~ Joshua L Liebman,
296:WHEN reading my present treatise, bear in mind that by "faith" we do not understand merely that which is uttered with the lips, but also that which is apprehended by the soul, the conviction that the object [of belief] is exactly as it is apprehended. If, as regards real or supposed truths, you content yourself with giving utterance to them in words, without apprehending them or believing in them, especially if you do not seek real truth, you have a very easy task as, in fact, you will find many ignorant people professing articles of faith without connecting any idea with them. ~ Maimonides,
297:My opinion is this: the cause of the error of all these schools is their belief that God's knowledge is like ours; each school points to something withheld from our knowledge, and either assumes that the same must be the case in God's knowledge, or at least finds some difficulty how to explain it. ...they likewise demonstrated... that our intellect and our knowledge are insufficient to comprehend the true idea of His essence. ...they came to the absurd conclusion that that which is required for our knowledge is also required for God's knowledge. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
298:Those who observe the nature of the Universe and the commandments of the Law, and know their purpose, see clearly God's mercy and truth in everything; they seek, therefore, that which the Creator intended to be the aim of man, viz., comprehension. Forced also by claims of the body, they seek that which is necessary for the preservation of the body, "bread to eat and garment to clothe," and this is very little; but they seek nothing superfluous; with very slight exertion man can obtain it, so long as he is contented with that which is indispensable. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
299:This shows the kindness of God to His creatures, even to us weak beings. His righteousness and justice as regards all animals are well known; for in the transient world there is among the various kinds of animals no individual being distinguished from the rest of the same species... all physical, psychical, and vital forces and organs that are possessed by one individual are found also in the other individuals. If any one is somehow different it is by accident, in consequence of some exception, and not by a natural property; it is also a rare occurrence. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
300:The third class of evils comprise those which everyone causes to himself by his own action. This is the largest class, and is far more numerous than the second class. It is especially of these evils that all men complain,—only few men are found that do not sin against themselves by this kind of evil. ...This class of evil originates in man's vices, such as excessive desire for eating, drinking, and love; indulgence in these things in undue measure, or in improper manner, or partaking of bad food. This course brings diseases and afflictions upon the body and soul alike. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
301:[T]he principal part in the human body, namely, the heart, is in constant motion, and is the source of every motion noticed in the body; it rules over the other members, and communicates to them through its own pulsations the force required for their functions. The outermost sphere by its motion rules in a similar way over all other parts of the universe, and supplies all things with their special properties. Every motion in the universe has thus its origin in the motion of that sphere; and the soul of every animated being derives its origin from the soul of that same sphere. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
302:According to each one of the different theories there are things which are impossible, whose existence cannot be admitted, and whose creation is excluded from the power of God, and the assumption that God does not change their nature does not imply weakness in God, or a limit to his power. Consequently things impossible remain impossible, and do not depend on the action of an agent. It is now clear that a difference of opinion exists only as to the question to which of the two classes anything belongs; whether to the class of the impossible, or to that of the possible. Note it. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
303:How great is the usefulness of every precept that delivers us from this great error, and leads us back to the true faith: that God, the Creator of all things, rules the Universe; that He must be served, loved, and feared, and not those imaginary deities. According to this faith we approach the true God, and obtain His favour without having recourse to burdensome means; for nothing else is required but to love and fear Him; this is the aim in serving God, as will be shown. Comp. "And now, Israel, what doth the Lord thy God require of thee but to fear the Lord?" &c. (Deut. x. 12) ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
304:In accordance with the Sabean theories images were erected to the stars, golden images to the sun, images of silver to the moon, and they attributed the metals and the climates to the influence of the planets, saying that a certain planet is the god of a certain zone. They built temples, placed in them images, and assumed that the stars sent forth their influence upon these images, which are thereby enabled (to speak) to understand, to comprehend, to inspire human beings, and to tell them what is useful to them. They apply the same to trees which fall to the lot of these stars. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
305:One who is in a dying condition is regarded as a living person in all respects. It is not permitted to bind his jaws, to stop up the organs of the lower extremities, or to place metallic or cooling vessels upon his navel in order to prevent swelling. He is not to be rubbed or washed, nor is sand or salt to be put upon him until he expires. He who touches him is guilty of shedding blood. To what may he be compared? To a flickering flame, which is extinguished as soon as one touches it. Whoever closes the eyes of the dying while the soul is about to depart is shedding blood. One should wait a while; perhaps he is only in a swoon. ~ Maimonides,
306:When [ Abraham ] the "Pillar of the World" appeared, he became convinced that there is a spiritual Divine Being, which is not a body, nor a force residing in a body, but is the author of the spheres and the stars; and he saw the absurdity of the tales in which he had been brought up. He therefore began to attack the belief of the Sabeans, to expose the falsehood of their opinions, and to proclaim publicly in opposition to them, "the name of the Lord, the God of the Universe" (Gen. xxi. 33), which proclamation included at the same time the Existence of God, and the Creation of the Universe by God. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
307:To give a full explanation of the mystic passages of the Bible is contrary to the law and to reason; besides, my knowledge of them is based on reasoning, not on divine inspiration [and is therefore not infallible]. ...It is... possible that my view is wrong, and that I misunderstand passages referred to. ...Those, however, for whom this treatise has been composed, will, on reflecting on it and thoroughly examining each chapter, obtain a clear insight into all that has been clear and intelligible to me. This is the utmost that can be done in treating this subject so to be useful to all without fully explaining it. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
308:It is frequently expressed in all parts of Scripture, that the worship of the stars would be followed by absence of rain, devastation of the land, bad times, diseases, and shortness of life. But abandonment of that worship, and the return to the service of God, would be the cause of the presence of rain, fertility of the ground, good times, health and length of life. Thus Scripture teaches, in order that man should abandon idolatry, the reverse of that which idolatrous priests preached to the people, for, as has been shown by us, the principal object of the Law is to remove this doctrine, and to destroy its traces. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
309:This [fourth] theory likewise implies contradictions and absurdities. The absurdities are these: The fact that some persons are born with defects, although they have not sinned previously, is ascribed to the wisdom of God, it being better for those persons to be in such a condition than to be in a normal state, though we do not see why it is better; and they do not suffer thereby any punishment at all, but, on the contrary, enjoy God's goodness. In a similar manner the slaughter of the pious is explained as being for them the source of an increase in reward in future life. They go even further in their absurdities. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
310:You are no doubt aware that the Almighty, desiring to lead us to perfection and to improve our state of society, has revealed to us laws which are to regulate our actions. These laws, however, presuppose an advanced state of intellectual culture. We must first form a conception of the Existence of the Creator according to our capabilities; that is, we must have a knowledge of Metaphysics. But this discipline can only be approached after the study of Physics: for the science of Physics borders on Metaphysics, and must even precede it in the course of our studies, as is clear to all who are familiar with these questions. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
311:You will not find it strange that I mention the explanation of Jonathan, son of Uzziel, whilst I give a different explanation myself; for you will find many of the wise men and the commentators differ from him in the interpretation of some words and in many things respecting the prophets. Why should it be otherwise in these profound matters? Besides, I do not decide in favour of my interpretation. It is for you to learn both—the whole of his explanation, from what I have pointed out to you, and also my own explanation. God knoweth which of the two explanations is in accordance with that which the prophet intended to say. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
312:In short, the opinion of Aristotle is this: Everything is the result of management which is constant, which does not come to an end and does not change any of its properties, as e.g., the heavenly beings, and everything which continues according to a certain rule... But that which is not constant, and does not follow a certain rule... is due to chance and not to management; it is in no relation to Divine Providence. Aristotle holds that it is even impossible to ascribe to Providence that management of these things. ...It is the belief of those who turned away from our Law and said: "God hath forsaken the earth." (Ezek. ix. 9) ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
313:When a person meditates on these matters and recognizes all the creations, the angels, the spheres, man, and the like, and appreciates the wisdom of the Holy One, blessed be He, in all these creations, he will add to his love for God. His soul will thirst and his flesh will long with love for God, blessed be He.
   He will stand in awe and fear from his humble, lowly, and base [nature] when he compares himself to one of the great and holy bodies, how much more so when comparing himself to the pure forms which are separate from matter and do not share any connection with it. He will see himself as a vessel full of embarrassment and shame, empty and lacking.
   ~ Maimonides, #index,
314:I do not ascribe to God ignorance of anything or any kind of weakness; I hold that Divine Providence is related and closely connected with the intellect, because Providence can only proceed from an intelligent being, from a being that is itself the most perfect Intellect. Those creatures, therefore, which receive part of that intellectual influence, will become subject to the action of Providence in the same proportion as they are acted upon by the intellect. This theory is in accordance with reason and with the teaching of the Scripture, whilst the other theories previously mentioned either exaggerate Divine Providence of detract from it. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
315:We must consider the words, "the heavens were opened" (Ezek. i. 1); they give the key to the understanding of the whole. The figure of opening, also that of opening the gates, occurs frequently in the books of the prophets... When he commences to describe the firmament in detail, he says, "the firmament," without adding the words "the likeness of," for he says, "And I looked, and behold, in the firmament that was above the head of the cherubims there appeared over them as it were a sapphire stone, as the appearance of the likeness of a throne" (Ezek x. 1). Here the prophet speaks of "the firmament" and not of "the likeness of the firmament,"... ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
316:The proposition has... been laid down in the most general terms, "All evils are negations." Thus for man death is evil; death is his non-existence. Illness, poverty, and ignorance are evils for man; all these are privations of properties. ...The destruction of other things is likewise nothing but the absence of their form. After these propositions, it must be admitted as a fact that it cannot be said of God that He directly creates evil, or He has the direct intention to produce evil; this is impossible. His works are all perfectly good. He only produces existence, and all existence is good; whilst evils are of a negative character, and cannot be acted upon. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
317:Fifth Theory.—This is our theory, or that of our Law. ...The theory of man's perfectly free will is one of the fundamental principles of the Law of our teacher Moses, and of those who follow the Law. According to this principle man does what is in his power to do, by his nature, his choice, and his will; and his action is not due to any faculty created for the purpose. All species of irrational animals likewise move by their own free will. This is the Will of God; that is to say, it is due to the eternal divine will that all living beings should move freely, and that man should have the power to act according to his will or choice within the limits of his capacity. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
318:The likeness of man above the throne is divided, the upper part being the colour of chashmal, the lower part like the appearance of fire. As regards the word chashmal, it has been explained to be the compound of two words chas and mal, including two different notions, viz., chash signifying "swiftness," and mal denoting "pause." The two different notions are here joined in one word in order to indicate figuratively the two different parts,—the upper part and the lower. We have already given a second explanation, namely, that chashmal includes the two notions of speach and silence; in accordance with the saying of our Sages, "At times they are silent,at times they speak." ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
319:Galen, in the third section of his book, "The Use of the Limbs," says correctly that it would be in vain to expect to see living beings formed of the blood of menstruous women and the semen virile, who will not die, will never feel pain, or will move perpetually, or shine like the sun. This dictum of Galen is part of the following more general proposition:—Whatever is formed of matter receives the most perfect form possible in that species of matter; in each individual case the defects are in accordance with that individual matter.    Compare Gottfried Leibniz argument for the "best of all possible worlds" in his Essays on the Goodness of God, the Freedom of Man and the Origin of Evil ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
320:When a man reflects on these things, studies all these created beings, from the angels and spheres down to human beings and so on, and realizes the divine wisdom manifested in them all, his love for God will increase, his soul will thirst, his very flesh will yearn to love God. He will be filled with fear and trembling, as he becomes conscious of his lowly condition, poverty, and insignificance, and compares himself with any of the great and holy bodies; still more when he compares himself with any one of the pure forms that are incorporeal and have never had association with any corporeal substance. He will then realize that he is a vessel full of shame, dishonor, and reproach, empty and deficient. ~ Maimonides, Mishneh Torah (c. 1180),
321:I agree with Aristotle as regards all other living beings and à fortiori as regards plants and all the rest of earthly creatures. For I do not believe that it is through Divine Providence that a certain leaf drops, nor do I hold that when a certain spider catches a certain fly, that this is a direct result of a special decree and will of God in that moment; it is not by a particular Divine decree that the spittle of a certain person moved, fell on a certain gnat in a certain place, and killed it; nor is it by the direct will of God that a certain fish catches and swallows a certain worm on the surface of the water. In all these cases the action is... entirely due to chance, as taught by Aristotle. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
322:By following entirely the guidance of lust, in the manner of fools, man loses his intellectual energy, injures his body, and perishes before his natural time; sighs and cares multiply; there is an increase of envy, hatred, and warfare, for the purpose of taking what another possesses. The cause of all this is the circumstance that the ignorant considers physical enjoyment as an object to be sought for its own sake. God in His wisdom has therefore given us such commandments as would counteract that object, and prevent us altogether from directing our attention to it, and has debarred us from everything that leads only to excessive desire and to lust. This is an important thing included in the objects of our Law. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
323:I rely on two precedents: first, to similar cases our Sages applied the verse, "It is time to do something in honour of the Lord: for they have made void thy law"... Secondly, they have said, "Let all thy acts be guided by pure intentions." ...Lastly, when I have a difficult subject before me—when I find the road narrow, and can see no other way of teaching a well established truth except by pleasing one intelligent man and displeasing ten thousand fools—I prefer to address myself to the one man, and to take no notice whatever of the condemnation of the multitude; I prefer to extricate that intelligent man from his embarrassment and show him the cause of his perplexity, so that he may attain perfection and be at peace. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
324:Scripture says:—If a man should rise, pretend to be a prophet, and show you his signs by which he desired to convince you that his words are true, know that God intends thereby to prove to the nations how firmly you believe in the truth of God's Word, and how well you have comprehended the true Essence of God; that you cannot be misled by any tempter to corrupt your faith in God. Your religion will then afford a guidance to all who seek the truth, and of all religions man will choose that which is so firmly established that it is not shaken by the performance of a miracle. For a miracle cannot prove that which is impossible; it is useful only as a confirmation of that which is possible, as we have explained in our Mishneh-torah. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
325:Aristotle was guided by that which appears to be the nature of things. The Ashariyah refused to ascribe to God ignorance about anything... they preferred to admit the above-mentioned absurdities. The Mu'tazilites refused to assume that God does what is wrong and unjust; on the other hand, they would not contradict common sense and say that it was not wrong to inflict pain on the guiltless, or that the mission of the Prophets and the giving of the Law had no intelligible reason. They likewise preferred to admit the above-named absurdities. But they even contradicted themselves, because they believe on the one hand that God knows everything, and on the other that man has free will. By a little consideration we discover the contradiction. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
326:Those who are ignorant and perverse in their thought are constantly in trouble and pain, because they cannot get as much of the superfluous things as a certain other person possesses. They as a rule expose themselves to great dangers... for the purpose of obtaining that which is superfluous and not necessary. When they thus meet with the consequences of the course which they adopt, they complain of the decrees and the judgements of God; they begin to blame the time, and wonder at the want of justice in its changes; that it has not enabled them to acquire great riches... for the purpose of driving themselves to voluptuousness beyond their capacities, as if the whole Universe existed only for the purpose of giving pleasure to these low people. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
327:You must know that if a person, who has attained a certain degree of perfection, wishes to impart to others, either orally or in writing, any portion of the knowledge which he has acquired of these subjects, he is utterly unable to be as systematic and explicit as he could be in a science of which the method is well known. The same difficulties which he encountered when investigating the subject for himself will attend him when endeavouring to instruct others: viz., at one time the explanation will appear lucid, at another time, obscure: this property of the subject appears to remain the same both to the advanced scholar and to the beginner. For this reason, great theological scholars gave instruction in all such matters only by means of metaphors and allegories. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
328:He who thinks he can have flesh and bones without being subject to any external influence, or any accidents of matter, unconsciously wishes to reconcile two opposites, viz., to be at the same time subject and not subject to change. If man were never subject to change there could be no generation; there would be one single being, but no individuals forming a species.    Compare Galileo, "...for my part I consider the earth very noble and admirable precisely because of the diverse alterations, changes, generations, etc. that occur in it incessantly. If, not being subject to any changes... I should deem it a useless lump in the universe, devoid of activity and, in a word, superfluous and essentially non-existent." Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems (1632) ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
329:Time is composed of time-atoms, i.e., of many parts, which on account of their short duration, cannot be divided. The Mutakallemim undoubtedly saw how Aristotle proved that time, space, and locomotion are of the same nature. ...They, therefore, knew that if time were continuous and divisible ad infinitum, their assumed atom of space would of necessity likewise be divisible. Similarly, if it were supposed that space were continuous... the time-element... could also be divided. This has been shown by Aristotle in... Acroasis [Aristotelis stagyritae acroases physicae]. ...An hour is, e.g., divided into sixty minutes, the second into sixty parts and so on; at last after ten or more successive divisions by sixty, time-elements are obtained which are not subjected to division, and in fact are indivisible. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
330:Bernard Lewis, a lifelong student of Jews and Islam and himself a Jew, reflected on the fourteen centuries of Jewish life under Islamic rule, eight centuries after Maimonides’ damning verdict. Lewis wrote: ‘The Jews were never free from discrimination, but only rarely subject to persecution.’ He noted that the situation of Jews living under Islamic rulers was ‘never as bad as in Christendom at its worst, nor ever as good as in Christendom at its best.’ Lewis observed that ‘there is nothing in Islamic history to parallel the Spanish expulsion and Inquisition, the Russian pogroms, or the Nazi Holocaust.’ But he also commented that, on the other hand, there was nothing in the history of Jews under Islam ‘to compare with the progressive emancipation and acceptance accorded to Jews in the democratic West during the last three centuries.’11 ~ Martin Gilbert,
331:The portion of the materia prima which is... is endowed with the intellectual faculty, possesses a special property by which each individual, according to the degree of his perfection, is enabled to manage, to calculate, and to discover what is conducive both to the temporary existence of the individual and to the preservation of the species. All other movements... by the individual members of the species are due to accident; they are not, according to Aristotle, the result of rule and management... Aristotle sees no difference between the falling of a leaf or a stone and the death of the good and noble people in the ship; nor does he distinguish between the destruction of a multitude of ants by an ox depositing on them his excrement and the death of worshippers killed by the fall of the house when its foundations give way. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
332:The most evident of the wonders described in the book On the Use of the Limbs [by Galen]... is clearly perceived by all who examine them with a sharp eye. In a similar manner did God provide for each individual animal of the class of mammalia. When such an animal is born it is extremely tender, and cannot be fed with dry food. Therefore breasts were provided which yield milk, and the young can be fed with moist food which corresponds to the condition of the limbs of the animal, until the latter have gradually become dry and hard. Many precepts in our Law are the result of a similar course adopted by the same Supreme Being. It is, namely, impossible to go suddenly from one extreme to the other; it is therefore according to the nature of man impossible for him suddenly to discontinue everything to which he has been accustomed. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
333:Consider in how many ways His knowledge is distinguished from ours according to all the teaching of every revealed religion. First, His knowledge is one, and yet embraces many different kinds of objects. Secondly, it is applied to things not in existence. Thirdly, it comprehends the infinite. Fourthly, it remains unchanged, though it comprises the knowledge of changeable things; whilst it seems that the knowledge of a thing that is to come into existence is different from the knowledge of the thing when it has come into existence; because there is the additional knowledge of its transition from a state of potentiality into that of reality. Fifthly, according to the teaching of our Law, God's knowledge of one of two eventualities does not determine it, however certain that knowledge may be concerning the future occurrence of the one eventuality. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
334:You know from the repeated declarations in the Law that the principal purpose of the whole Law was the removal and utter destruction of idolatry, and all that is connected therewith, even its name, and everything that might lead to any such practices, e.g., acting as a consulter with familiar spirits, or as a wizard, passing children through the fire, divining, observing the clouds, enchanting, charming, or inquiring of the dead. The law prohibits us to imitate the heathen in any of these deeds, and a fortiori to adopt them entirely. It is distinctly said in the Law that everything which idolaters consider as service to their gods, and a means of approaching them, is rejected and despised by God... Thus all precepts cautioning against idolatry, or against that which is connected therewith, leads to it, or is related to it, are evidently useful. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
335:By the end of medical school, most students tended to focus on "lifestyle" specialities - those with more humane hours, higher salaries, and lower pressures - the idealism of their med school application essays tempered or lost. As graduation neared and we sat down, in a Yale tradition, to re-write our commencement oath - a melding of the words of Hippocrates, Maimonides, Osler, along with a few other great medical forefathers - several students argued for the removal of language insisting that we place our patients' interests above our own. (The rest of us didn't allow this discussion to continue for long. The words stayed. This kind of egotism struck me as antithetical to medicine and, it should be noted, entirely reasonable. Indeed, this is how 99 percent of people select their jobs: pay, work environment, hours. But thats the point. Putting lifestyle first is how you find a job - not a calling). ~ Paul Kalanithi,
336:Third Theory.—According to this theory, there is nothing in the whole Universe... that is due to chance; everything is the result of will, intention, and rule. It is a matter of course that he who rules must know. The Mohametan Ashariyah adhere to this theory, notwithstanding evident absurdities implied in it. ...The Ashariyah were therefore compelled to assume that motion and rest of living beings are predestined, and that it is not in the power of a man to do a certain thing or to leave it undone. ...It follows also from this theory, that precepts are perfectly useless, since the people to whom any law is given... can neither do what they are commanded nor abstain from what they are forbidden. ...According to this theory, it must also be assumed that the actions of God have no final cause. All these absurdities are admitted by the Ashariyah for the purpose of saving this theory. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
337:Some consider... all wants of the body as shame, disgrace, and defect to which they are compelled to attend; this is chiefly the case with the sense of touch, which is a disgrace to us according to Aristotle, and which is the cause of our desire for eating, drinking, and sensuality. Intelligent persons must, as much as possible, reduce these wants, guard against them, abstain from speaking of them, discussing them, and attending to them in company of others. Man must have control over all these desires, reduce them as much as possible, and only retain of them as much as is indispensable. His aim must be the aim of man as man, viz., the formation of ideas, and nothing else. The best and sublimest among them is the idea which man forms of God, angels, and the rest of the creation according to his capacity. Such men are always with God, and of them it is said, "Ye are princes, and all of you are children of the Most High." (Ps. lxxxii. 6) This is man's task and purpose. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
338:The Aryan identity got broken off and forked historically in ancient Egypt where we witness the Osirian identity being passed down to the Jew while the Atenian one being inherited by their Christian successors. The Jew for example keeps his sidelocks (i.e. Payot) as his Egyptian plagiarized heritage states in Leviticus 19:27. This is the very same hair style worn by Horus The Child (Harpocrates/Heru-P-Khart) while sitting protected between the Aker lions; he also had seven manifstations just as Yahweh has seven authentic names (which are not to be classified as, attributes, according to Maimonides' magnum opus 'Mishneh Torah' as we read in Sefer Madda - Yesodei haTorah). The significance of this form of Horus is that it became the type of new birth starting from the New Kingdom onwards when the triads of gods got renewed and rejuvenated as Budge informs us. Horus, hence, became the Lion of Judah who was called by the ancient Egyptians as the 'Great Protector' and was also depicted as a lion with a head of a hawk. ~ Ibrahim Ibrahim,
339:Everything in the varying human affairs is due to chance, according to Aristotle, to the Divine Will alone according to the Ashariyah, to Divine Wisdom according to the Mu'tazilites, to the merits of man according to our opinion. It is therefore possible, according to the Ashariyah, that God inflicts pain on a good and pious man in this world, and eeps him forever in fire, which is assumed to rage in the world to come; they simply say it is the will of God. The Mu'tazilites would consider this an injustice, and therefore assume that every being, even an ant, that is stricken with pain, has compensation for it... and it is due to God's Wisdom, that a being is struck and afflicted in order to receive compensation. We, however, believe that all these human affairs are managed with justice; far be it from God to do wrong, to punish any one unless the punishment is necessary and merited. It is distinctly stated in the Law, that all is done in accordance with justice; and the words of our Sages generally express the same idea. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
340:I understood where I had come from: from a dreary tangle of sadness and pretense, of longing, absurdity, inferiority and provincial pomposity, sentimental education and anachronistic ideals, repressed traumas, resignation, and helplessness. Helplessness of the acerbic, domestic variety, where small-time liars pretended to be dangerous terrorists and heroic freedom fighters, where unhappy bookbinders invented formulas for universal salvation, where dentists whispered confidentially to all their neighbors about their protracted personal correspondence with Stalin, where piano teachers, kindergarten teachers, and housewives tossed and turned tearfully at night from stifled yearning for an emotion-laden artistic life, where compulsive writers wrote endless disgruntled letters to the editor of Davar, where elderly bakers saw Maimonides and the Baal Shem Tov in their dreams, where nervy, self-righteous trade-union hacks kept an apparatchik's eye on the rest of the local residents, where cashiers at the cinema or the cooperative shop composed poems and pamphlets at night. ~ Amos Oz,
341:He fully knows His unchangeable essence, and has thus a knowledge of all that results from any of His acts. If we were to try to understand in what manner this is done, it would be the same as if we tried to be the same as God, and to make our knowledge identical with His knowledge. Those who seek the truth, and admit what is true, must believe that nothing is hidden from God; that everything is revealed to His knowledge, which is identical with His essence; that this kind of knowledge cannot be comprehended by us; for if we knew its method, we would possess that intellect by which such knowledge could be acquired. ...Note this well, for I think that this is an excellent idea, and leads to correct views; no error will be found in it; no dialectical argument; it does not lead to any absurd conclusion, nor to ascribing any defect to God. These sublime and profound themes admit of no proof whatever... In all questions that cannot be demonstrated, we must adopt the method which we have adopted in this question about God's Omniscience. Note it. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
342:The custom which was in those days general among all men, and the general mode of worship in which the Israelites were brought up, consisted in sacrificing animals in those temples which contained certain images to bow down to those images, and to burn incense before them; religious and ascetic persons were in those days the persons that were devoted to the service in the temples erected to the stars... It was in accordance with the wisdom and plan of God, as displayed in the whole Creation, that He did not command us to give up and to discontinue all these manners of service, for to obey such a commandment it would have been contrary to the nature of man, who generally cleaves to that to which he is used... By this Divine plan it was effected that the traces of idolatry were blotted out, and the truly great principle of our faith, the existence and Unity of God, was firmly established; this result was thus obtained without deterring or confusing the minds of the people by the abolition of the service to which they were accustomed and which alone was familiar to them. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
343:It is difficult to know how anyone, even the most bitter anti-Catholic, could truly have believed any of this! By itself, the biography of Moses Maimonides (1135–1204) makes a travesty of all these claims. In 1148, the Maimonides family pretended to convert to Islam when the Jews of Córdoba were told to become Muslims or leave, upon pain of death. Note that when most historians mention that in 1492 Ferdinand and Isabella ordered the Jews of Spain to convert to Christianity or leave, they forget to mention that the Muslims had imposed the same demand in the twelfth century. Nor do they mention that many Jews who opted to leave Moorish Spain rather than pretend to convert settled in the Christian areas of northern Spain. In any event, after eleven years of posing as converts, the Maimonides family became so fearful of discovery that they fled to Morocco where they continued their deception. Thus, throughout his adult life, the most celebrated medieval Jewish thinker posed as a Muslim.64 His story clearly reveals that, as Richard Fletcher has put it so well, “Moorish Spain was not a tolerant and enlightened society even in its most cultivated epoch. ~ Rodney Stark,
344:Through the constant revolution of the fifth element, with all contained therein, the four elements are forced to move and to change their respective positions, so that fire and air are driven into the water, and again these three elements enter the depth of the earth. Thus are the elements mixed together; and when they return to their respective places, parts of the earth, in quitting their places, move together with the water, the air and the fire. In this whole process the elements act and react upon each other. The elements intermixed, are then combined, and form at first various kinds of vapours; afterwards the several kinds of minerals, every species of plants, and many species of living beings, according to the relative proportion of the constituent parts. All transient beings have their origin in the elements, into which again they resolve when their existence comes to an end. The elements themselves are subject to being transformed from one into another; for although one substance is common to all, substance without form is in reality impossible, just as the physical form of these transient beings cannot exist without substance. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
345:What prevented Him from making His primary object a direct commandment to us, and to give us the capacity of obeying it? ...As it is the chief object and purpose of God that we should believe in the Law, and act according to that which is written therein, why has He not given us the capacity of continually believing in it, and following its guidance, instead of holding out to us reward for obedience, and punishment for disobedience, or of actually giving all the predicted reward and punishment? For [the promises and the threats] are but the means of leading to this chief object. What prevented Him from giving us, as part of our nature, the will to do that which He desires us to do, and to abandon the kind of worship which He rejects? There is one general answer to these three questions, and all questions of the character; it is this: Although in every one of the signs [related in Scripture] the natural property of some individual being is changed, the nature of man is never changed by God by way of miracle. ...it is in His power, according to the principles taught in Scripture, but it has never been His will to do it, and it never will be. If it were part of His will to change [at His desire] the nature of any person, the mission of prophets and the giving of the Law would have been altogether superfluous. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
346:The philosophers have uttered very perverse ideas as regards God's Omniscience of everything besides Himself; they have stumbled in such a manner that they cannot rise again, nor can those who adopt their views. ...They continued thus: If he perceives and knows all individual things, one of the following three cases must take place: (1.) God arranges and manages human affairs well, perfectly, and faultlessly; (2.) He is overcome by obstacles, and is too weak and powerless to manage human affairs; (3.) He knows [all things] and can arrange and manage them, but leaves and abandons them, as too base, low, and vile... Those who have a knowledge of a certain thing necessarily either (1.) take care of the thing they know, and manage it, or (2.) neglect it; or (3.) while taking care of it, have not sufficient power and strength for its management, although they have the will to do so. ...the philosophers emphatically decided that of the three cases... two are inadmissible in reference to God—viz., want of power, or absence of will... Consequently there remains only the alternative that God is altogether ignorant of human affairs, or that He knows them and manages them well. ...we conclude that God has no knowledge of them in any way of for any reason. This is the argument which led philosophers to speak such blasphemous words. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
347:Throughout the Middle Ages, Jews had no part in the culture of Christian countries, and were too severely persecuted to be able to make contributions to civilization, beyond supplying capital for the building of cathedrals and such enterprises. It was only among the Mohammedans, at that period, that Jews were treated humanely, and were able to pursue philosophy and enlightened speculation. Throughout the Middle Ages, the Mohammedans were more civilized and more humane than the Christians. Christians persecuted Jews, especially at times of religious excitement; the Crusades were associated with appalling pogroms. In Mohammedan countries, on the contrary, Jews at most times were not in any way ill treated. Especially in Moorish Spain, they contributed to learning; Maimonides (1135–1204), who was born at Cordova, is regarded by some as the source of much of Spinoza’s
philosophy.Mohammedan civilization in its great days was admirable in the arts and in many technical ways, but it showed no capacity for independent speculation in theoretical matters. Its importance, which must not be under-rated, is as a transmitter. Between ancient and modern European civilization, the dark ages intervened. The Mohammedans and the Byzantines, while lacking the intellectual energy required for innovation, preserved the apparatus of civilization—education, books, and learned leisure. Both stimulated the West when it emerged from barbarism—the Mohammedans chiefly in the thirteenth century, the Byzantines chiefly in the fifteenth. ~ Bertrand Russell,
348:Throughout the Middle Ages, Jews had no part in the culture of Christian countries, and were too severely persecuted to be able to make contributions to civilization, beyond supplying capital for the building of cathedrals and such enterprises. It was only among the Mohammedans, at that period, that Jews were treated humanely, and were able to pursue philosophy and enlightened speculation. Throughout the Middle Ages, the Mohammedans were more civilized and more humane than the Christians. Christians persecuted Jews, especially at times of religious excitement; the Crusades were associated with appalling pogroms. In Mohammedan countries, on the contrary, Jews at most times were not in any way ill treated. Especially in Moorish Spain, they contributed to learning; Maimonides (1135–1204), who was born at Cordova, is regarded by some as the source of much of Spinoza’s
philosophy. (..) Mohammedan civilization in its great days was admirable in the arts and in many technical ways, but it showed no capacity for independent speculation in theoretical matters. Its importance, which must not be under-rated, is as a transmitter. Between ancient and modern European civilization, the dark ages intervened. The Mohammedans and the Byzantines, while lacking the intellectual energy required for innovation, preserved the apparatus of civilization—education, books, and learned leisure. Both stimulated the West when it emerged from barbarism—the Mohammedans chiefly in the thirteenth century, the Byzantines chiefly in the fifteenth. ~ Bertrand Russell,
349:As there is a difference between works of nature and productions of human handicraft, so there is a difference between God's rule, providence, and intention in reference to all natural forces, and our rule, providence, and intention in reference to things which are the objects of our rule, providence, and intention. This lesson is the principal object of the whole Book of Job; it lays down this principle of faith, and recommends us to derive a proof from nature, that we should not fall into the error of imagining His knowledge to be similar to ours, or His intention, providence, and rule similar to ours. When we know this, we shall find everything that may befall us easy to bear; mishap will create no doubts in our hearts concerning God, whether He knows our affairs or not, whether He provides for us or abandons us. On the contrary, our fate will increase our love of God; as is said in the end of this prophecy: "Therefore I abhor myself and repent concerning the dust and ashes" (xlii. 6); and as our Sages say: "The pious do everything out of love, and rejoice in their own afflictions." If you pay to my words the attention which this treatise demands, and examine all that is said in the Book of Job, all will be clear to you, and you will find that I have grasped and taken hold of the whole subject; nothing has been left unnoticed, except such portions as are only introduced because of the context and the whole plan of the allegory. I have explained this method several times in the course of this treatise. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
350:Do not imagine that these most difficult problems can be thoroughly understood by any one of us. This is not the case. At times the truth shines so brilliantly that we perceive it as clear as day. Our nature and habit then draw a veil over our perception, and we return to a darkness almost as dense as before. We are like those who, though beholding frequent flashes of lightning, still find themselves in the thickest darkness of the night. On some the lightning flashes in rapid succession, and they seem to be in continuous light, and their night is as clear as the day. This was the degree of prophetic excellence attained by (Moses) the greatest of prophets, to whom God said," But as for thee, stand thou here by Me" (Deut. v. 31), and of whom it is written" the skin of his face shone," etc. (Exod. xxxiv. 29). [Some perceive the prophetic flash at long intervals; this is the degree of most prophets.] By others only once during the whole night is a flash of lightning perceived. This is the case with those of whom we are informed," They prophesied, and did not prophesy again" (Num. xi. 25). There are some to whom the flashes of lightning appear with varying intervals; others are in the condition of men, whose darkness is illumined not by lightning, but by some kind of crystal or similar stone, or other substances that possess the property of shining during the night; and to them even this small amount of light is not continuous, but now it shines and now it vanishes, as if it were" the flame of the rotating sword." ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
351:The reason of a commandment, whether positive or negative, is clear, and its usefulness evident, if it directly tends to remove injustice, or to teach good conduct that furthers the well-being of society, or to impart a truth which ought to be believed either on its own merit or as being indispensable for facilitating the removal of injustice or the teaching of good morals. There is no occasion to ask for the object of such commandments; for no one can, e.g., be in doubt as to the reason why we have been commanded to believe that God is one; why we are forbidden to murder, steal, and to take vengeance, or to retaliate, or why we are commanded to love one another. But there are precepts concerning which people are in doubt, and of divided opinions, some believing they are mere commands, and serve no purpose whatever, whilst others believe that they serve a certain purpose, which, however is unknown to man. Such are those precepts which in their literal meaning do not seem to further any of the three above-named results: to impart some truth, to teach some moral, or to remove injustice. They do not seem to have any influence upon the well-being of the soul by imparting any truth, or upon the well-being of the body by suggesting such ways and rules as are useful in the government of a state, or in the management of a household. ...I will show that all these and similar laws must have some bearing upon one of the following three things, viz., the regulation of our opinions, or the improvement of our social relations, which implies two things, the removal of injustice, and the teaching of good morals. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
352:The words of God are justified, as I will show, by the fact that Job abandoned his first very erroneous opinion, and himself proved that it was an error. It is the opinion which suggests itself as plausible at first thought, especially in the minds of those who meet with mishap, well knowing that they have not merited them through sins. This is admitted by all, and therefore this opinion was assigned to Job. But he is represented to hold this view only so long as he was without wisdom, and knew God only by tradition, in the same manner as religious people generally know Him. As soon as he had acquired a true knowledge of God, he confessed that there is undoubtedly true felicity in the knowledge of God; it is attained by all who acquire that knowledge, and no earthly trouble can disturb it. So long as Job's knowledge of God was based on tradition and communication, and not on research, he believed that such imaginary good as is possessed in health, riches, and children, was the utmost that men can attain; this was the reason why he was in perplexity, and why he uttered the... opinions, and this is also the meaning of his words: "I have heard of thee by the hearing of the ear; but now mine eye seeth thee. Wherefore I abhor myself, and repent because of dust and ashes" (xlii. 5, 6); that is to say, he abhorred all that he had desired before, and that he was sorry that he had been in dust and ashes; comp. "and he sat down among the ashes" (ii. 8) On account of this last utterance, which implies true perception, it is said afterwards in reference to him, "for you have not spoken of me the thing that is right, as my servant Job hath." ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
353:Whatever God desires to do is necessarily done; there is nothing that could prevent the realisation of His will. The object of His will is only that which is possible, and of the things possible only such as His wisdom decrees upon. When God desires to produce the best work, no obstacle or hindrance intervenes between Him and that work. This is the opinion held by all religious people, also by the philosophers; it is also our opinion. For although we believe that God created the Universe from nothing, most of our wise and learned men believe that the Creation was not the exclusive result of His will; but His wisdom, which we are unable to comprehend, made the actual existence of the Universe necessary. The same unchangeable wisdom found it as necessary that non-existence should precede the existence of the Universe. Our Sages frequently express this idea in the explanation of the words, "He hath made everything beautiful in his time" (Eccl. iii. 11)... This is the belief of most of our Theologians; and in a similar manner have the Prophets expressed the idea that all parts of natural products are well arranged, in good order, connected with each other, and stand to each other in the relation of cause and effect; nothing of them is purposeless, trivial, or vain; they are all the result of great wisdom. ...This idea occurs frequently; there is no necessity to believe otherwise; philosophic speculation leads to the same result; viz., that in the whole of Nature there is nothing purposeless, trivial, or unnecessary, especially in the nature of the spheres, which are in the best condition and order, in accordance with their superior substance. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
354:Know that this Universe, in its entirety, is nothing else but one individual being; that is to say, the outermost heavenly sphere, together with all included therein, is as regards individuality beyond all question a single being like Said and Omar. The variety of its substances—I mean the substances of that sphere and all its component parts—is like the variety of the substances of a human being: just as, e.g., Said is one individual, consisting of various solid substances, such as flesh, bones, sinews of various humours, and of various spiritual elements; in like manner this sphere in its totality is composed of the celestial orbs, the four elements and their combinations; there is no vacuum whatever therein, but the whole space is filled up with matter. Its centre is occupied by the earth, earth is surrounded by water, air encompasses the water, fire envelopes the air, and this again is enveloped by the fifth substance (quintessence). These substances form numerous spheres, one being enclosed within another so that no intermediate empty space, no vacuum, is left. One sphere surrounds and closely joins the other. All the spheres revolve with constant uniformity, without acceleration or retardation; that is to say, each sphere retains its individual nature as regards its velocity and the peculiarity of its motion; it does not move at one time quicker, at another slower. Compared with each other, however, some of the spheres move with less, others with greater velocity. The outermost, all-encompassing sphere, revolves with the greatest speed; it completes its revolution in one day, and causes every thing to participate in its motion, just as every particle of a thing moves when the entire body is in motion; for all existing beings stand in the same relation to that sphere as a part of a thing stands to the whole. These spheres have not a common centre; the centres of some of them are identical with the centre of the Universe, while those of the rest are different from it. Some of the spheres have a motion independent of that of the whole Universe, constantly revolving from East to West, while other spheres move from West to East. The stars contained in those spheres are part of their respective orbits; they are fixed in them, and have no motion of their own, but participating in the motion of the sphere of which they are a part, they themselves appear to move. The entire substance of this revolving fifth element is unlike the substance of those bodies which consist of the other four elements, and are enclosed by the fifth element. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),
355:Hartung tells of a horrifying study by the Israeli psychologist George Tamarin. Tamarin presented to more than a thousand Israeli schoolchildren, aged between eight and fourteen, the account of the battle of Jericho in the book of Joshua:   Joshua said to the people, ‘Shout; for the LORD has given you the city. And the city and all that is within it shall be devoted to the LORD for destruction . . . But all silver and gold, and vessels of bronze and iron, are sacred to the LORD; they shall go into the treasury of the LORD.’ . . . Then they utterly destroyed all in the city, both men and women, young and old, oxen, sheep, and asses, with the edge of the sword . . . And they burned the city with fire, and all within it; only the silver and gold, and the vessels of bronze and of iron, they put into the treasury of the house of the LORD.   Tamarin then asked the children a simple moral question: ‘Do you think Joshua and the Israelites acted rightly or not?’ They had to choose between A (total approval), B (partial approval) and C (total disapproval). The results were polarized: 66 per cent gave total approval and 26 per cent total disapproval, with rather fewer (8 per cent) in the middle with partial approval. Here are three typical answers from the total approval (A) group:   In my opinion Joshua and the Sons of Israel acted well, and here are the reasons: God promised them this land, and gave them permission to conquer. If they would not have acted in this manner or killed anyone, then there would be the danger that the Sons of Israel would have assimilated among the Goyim.   In my opinion Joshua was right when he did it, one reason being that God commanded him to exterminate the people so that the tribes of Israel will not be able to assimilate amongst them and learn their bad ways.   Joshua did good because the people who inhabited the land were of a different religion, and when Joshua killed them he wiped their religion from the earth.   The justification for the genocidal massacre by Joshua is religious in every case. Even those in category C, who gave total disapproval, did so, in some cases, for backhanded religious reasons. One girl, for example, disapproved of Joshua’s conquering Jericho because, in order to do so, he had to enter it:   I think it is bad, since the Arabs are impure and if one enters an impure land one will also become impure and share their curse.   Two others who totally disapproved did so because Joshua destroyed everything, including animals and property, instead of keeping some as spoil for the Israelites:   I think Joshua did not act well, as they could have spared the animals for themselves.   I think Joshua did not act well, as he could have left the property of Jericho; if he had not destroyed the property it would have belonged to the Israelites.   Once again the sage Maimonides, often cited for his scholarly wisdom, is in no doubt where he stands on this issue: ‘It is a positive commandment to destroy the seven nations, as it is said: Thou shalt utterly destroy them. If one does not put to death any of them that falls into one’s power, one transgresses a negative commandment, as it is said: Thou shalt save alive nothing that breatheth! ~ Richard Dawkins,
356:There are seven causes of inconsistencies and contradictions to be met with in a literary work. The first cause arises from the fact that the author collects the opinions of various men, each differing from the other, but neglects to mention the name of the author of any particular opinion. In such a work contradictions or inconsistencies must occur, since any two statements may belong to two different authors. Second cause: The author holds at first one opinion which he subsequently rejects: in his work, however, both his original and altered views are retained. Third cause: The passages in question are not all to be taken literally: some only are to be understood in their literal sense, while in others figurative language is employed, which includes another meaning besides the literal one: or, in the apparently inconsistent passages, figurative language is employed which, if taken literally, would seem to be contradictories or contraries. Fourth cause: The premises are not identical in both statements, but for certain reasons they are not fully stated in these passages: or two propositions with different subjects which are expressed by the same term without having the difference in meaning pointed out, occur in two passages. The contradiction is therefore only apparent, but there is no contradiction in reality. The fifth cause is traceable to the use of a certain method adopted in teaching and expounding profound problems. Namely, a difficult and obscure theorem must sometimes be mentioned and assumed as known, for the illustration of some elementary and intelligible subject which must be taught beforehand the commencement being always made with the easier thing. The teacher must therefore facilitate, in any manner which he can devise, the explanation of those theorems, which have to be assumed as known, and he must content himself with giving a general though somewhat inaccurate notion on the subject. It is, for the present, explained according to the capacity of the students, that they may comprehend it as far as they are required to understand the subject. Later on, the same subject is thoroughly treated and fully developed in its right place. Sixth cause: The contradiction is not apparent, and only becomes evident through a series of premises. The larger the number of premises necessary to prove the contradiction between the two conclusions, the greater is the chance that it will escape detection, and that the author will not perceive his own inconsistency. Only when from each conclusion, by means of suitable premises, an inference is made, and from the enunciation thus inferred, by means of proper arguments, other conclusions are formed, and after that process has been repeated many times, then it becomes clear that the original conclusions are contradictories or contraries. Even able writers are liable to overlook such inconsistencies. If, however, the contradiction between the original statements can at once be discovered, and the author, while writing the second, does not think of the first, he evinces a greater deficiency, and his words deserve no notice whatever. Seventh cause: It is sometimes necessary to introduce such metaphysical matter as may partly be disclosed, but must partly be concealed: while, therefore, on one occasion the object which the author has in view may demand that the metaphysical problem be treated as solved in one way, it may be convenient on another occasion to treat it as solved in the opposite way. The author must endeavour, by concealing the fact as much as possible, to prevent the uneducated reader from perceiving the contradiction. ~ Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed (c. 1190),

IN CHAPTERS [9/9]



   1 Psychology
   1 Philosophy
   1 Occultism
   1 Christianity


   3 Carl Jung


   3 The Secret Doctrine
   2 Aion


1.08 - The Historical Significance of the Fish, #Aion, #Carl Jung, #Psychology
  62 A passage in Moses Maimonides (Guide for the Perplexed, trans, by M. Fried-
  lander, p. 303) has bearing on the interpretation of Leviathan. Kirchmaier (Dis-

1.09 - The Ambivalence of the Fish Symbol, #Aion, #Carl Jung, #Psychology
  of Moses Maimonides, who writes that in the Book of Job (ch. 41) Yahweh
  "dwells longest on the nature of the Leviathan, which possesses a combination of

5.03 - ADAM AS THE FIRST ADEPT, #Mysterium Coniunctionis, #Carl Jung, #Psychology
  [571] The Jewish sources are even more explicit. Adam understood all the arts,96 he invented writing, and from the angels he learnt husbandry and all the professions including the art of the smith.97 A treatise from the eleventh century lists thirty kinds of fruit which he brought with him from paradise.98 Maimonides states that Adam wrote a book on trees and plants.99 Rabbi Eliezer credits Adam with the invention of the leap-year.100 According to him, the tables on which God later inscribed the law came from Adam.101 From Eliezer, probably, derives the statement of Bernardus Trevisanus that Hermes Trismegistus found seven stone tables in the vale of Hebron, left over from antediluvian times. On them was a description of the seven liberal arts. Adam had put these tables there after his expulsion from paradise.102 According to Dorn, Adam was the first practitioner and inventor of the arts. He had a knowledge of all things before and after the Fall, and he also prophesied the renewal and chastening of the world by the flood.103 His descendants set up two stone tables on which they recorded all the natural arts in hieroglyphic script. Noah found one of these tables at the foot of Mount Ararat, bearing a record of astronomy.104
  [572] This legend probably goes back to Jewish tradition, to stories like the one mentioned in the Zohar:

BOOK II. -- PART I. ANTHROPOGENESIS., #The Secret Doctrine, #H P Blavatsky, #Theosophy
  mystery, as explained elsewhere, and it is so expressed in Maimonides, "In More Nevochim" (chapter
  xxvi., p. 8). "There is an impenetrable mystery in the narrative concerning Azazel." And so there is, as

BOOK II. -- PART II. THE ARCHAIC SYMBOLISM OF THE WORLD-RELIGIONS, #The Secret Doctrine, #H P Blavatsky, #Theosophy
  the same. The work was as well known in antiquity as it was during the Middle Ages. Maimonides
  speaks of it, and refers more than once to this Chaldeo-Arabic MS., calling the Nabatheans by their coreligionary name, i.e., "star-worshippers," or Sabeans, but yet failing to see in this disfigured word
  --
  that Maimonides calls their doctrines "hea thenish foolishness" and their archaic literature "Sabaeorum
  foetum," he places their "agriculture," the Bible of Qu-tamy, in the first rank of Archaic literature; and
  --
  truth, even "hea thenish foolishness." Maimonides, however, while expressing scorn for the esotericism
  in the religion of other nations, confessed esotericism and symbology in his own, preached

BOOK I. -- PART II. THE EVOLUTION OF SYMBOLISM IN ITS APPROXIMATE ORDER, #The Secret Doctrine, #H P Blavatsky, #Theosophy
  (vide Book III.) Seldenus tells us the secret as well as Maimonides (More Nevochim, Book III., ch.
  xxx). The worshippers of the Teraphim (the Jewish Oracles) "carved images and claimed that the light

ENNEAD 06.05 - The One and Identical Being is Everywhere Present In Its Entirety.345, #Plotinus - Complete Works Vol 04, #Plotinus, #Christianity
  Among the Arabian philosophers that follow in his steps are Maimonides and Ibn Gebirol.741
  Of the Christian fathers we first have two who paraphrased, rather than quoted him.

The Act of Creation text, #The Act of Creation, #Arthur Koestler, #Psychology
  the belief that the earth was round. The Jews had their Maimonides,
  the Arabs their Alkhazen, Christendom the Venerable Bede, before

the Eternal Wisdom, #unset, #Anonymous, #Various
  7) One must receive the Truth from wheresoever it may come. ~ Maimonides
  8) Accept what is good even from the babbling of an idiot or the prattle of a child as they extract gold from a stone. ~ Mahabharata
  --
  5) The just suffer injury without returning it; they hear reproach without replying; they act only out of love and keep the serenity of their soul in the midst of torments. ~ Maimonides
  6) Wherefore, O my brothers, if men blame you, condemn you, persecute or attack you, you shall not be indignant, you shall not be discouraged and your spirit shall not be cast down. ~ Buddhist Text

WORDNET



--- Overview of noun maimonides

The noun maimonides has 1 sense (no senses from tagged texts)
                  
1. Maimonides, Moses Maimonides, Rabbi Moses Ben Maimon ::: (Spanish philosopher considered the greatest Jewish scholar of the Middle Ages who codified Jewish law in the Talmud (1135-1204))


--- Synonyms/Hypernyms (Ordered by Estimated Frequency) of noun maimonides

1 sense of maimonides                        

Sense 1
Maimonides, Moses Maimonides, Rabbi Moses Ben Maimon
   INSTANCE OF=> philosopher
     => scholar, scholarly person, bookman, student
       => intellectual, intellect
         => person, individual, someone, somebody, mortal, soul
           => organism, being
             => living thing, animate thing
               => whole, unit
                 => object, physical object
                   => physical entity
                     => entity
           => causal agent, cause, causal agency
             => physical entity
               => entity


--- Hyponyms of noun maimonides
                                    


--- Synonyms/Hypernyms (Ordered by Estimated Frequency) of noun maimonides

1 sense of maimonides                        

Sense 1
Maimonides, Moses Maimonides, Rabbi Moses Ben Maimon
   INSTANCE OF=> philosopher




--- Coordinate Terms (sisters) of noun maimonides

1 sense of maimonides                        

Sense 1
Maimonides, Moses Maimonides, Rabbi Moses Ben Maimon
  -> philosopher
   => nativist
   => Cynic
   => eclectic, eclecticist
   => empiricist
   => epistemologist
   => esthetician, aesthetician
   => ethicist, ethician
   => existentialist, existentialist philosopher, existential philosopher
   => gymnosophist
   => libertarian
   => mechanist
   => moralist
   => naturalist
   => necessitarian
   => nominalist
   => pluralist
   => pre-Socratic
   => realist
   => Scholastic
   => Sophist
   => Stoic
   => transcendentalist
   => yogi
   HAS INSTANCE=> Abelard, Peter Abelard, Pierre Abelard
   HAS INSTANCE=> Anaxagoras
   HAS INSTANCE=> Anaximander
   HAS INSTANCE=> Anaximenes
   HAS INSTANCE=> Arendt, Hannah Arendt
   HAS INSTANCE=> Aristotle
   HAS INSTANCE=> Averroes, ibn-Roshd, Abul-Walid Mohammed ibn-Ahmad Ibn-Mohammed ibn-Roshd
   HAS INSTANCE=> Avicenna, ibn-Sina, Abu Ali al-Husain ibn Abdallah ibn Sina
   HAS INSTANCE=> Bacon, Francis Bacon, Sir Francis Bacon, Baron Verulam, 1st Baron Verulam, Viscount St. Albans
   HAS INSTANCE=> Bentham, Jeremy Bentham
   HAS INSTANCE=> Bergson, Henri Bergson, Henri Louis Bergson
   HAS INSTANCE=> Berkeley, Bishop Berkeley, George Berkeley
   HAS INSTANCE=> Boethius, Anicius Manlius Severinus Boethius
   HAS INSTANCE=> Bruno, Giordano Bruno
   HAS INSTANCE=> Buber, Martin Buber
   HAS INSTANCE=> Cassirer, Ernst Cassirer
   HAS INSTANCE=> Cleanthes
   HAS INSTANCE=> Comte, Auguste Comte, Isidore Auguste Marie Francois Comte
   HAS INSTANCE=> Condorcet, Marquis de Condorcet, Marie Jean Antoine Nicolas Caritat
   HAS INSTANCE=> Confucius, Kongfuze, K'ung Futzu, Kong the Master
   HAS INSTANCE=> Democritus
   HAS INSTANCE=> Derrida, Jacques Derrida
   HAS INSTANCE=> Descartes, Rene Descartes
   HAS INSTANCE=> Dewey, John Dewey
   HAS INSTANCE=> Diderot, Denis Diderot
   HAS INSTANCE=> Diogenes
   HAS INSTANCE=> Empedocles
   HAS INSTANCE=> Epictetus
   HAS INSTANCE=> Epicurus
   HAS INSTANCE=> Haeckel, Ernst Heinrich Haeckel
   HAS INSTANCE=> Hartley, David Hartley
   HAS INSTANCE=> Hegel, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel
   HAS INSTANCE=> Heraclitus
   HAS INSTANCE=> Herbart, Johann Friedrich Herbart
   HAS INSTANCE=> Herder, Johann Gottfried von Herder
   HAS INSTANCE=> Hobbes, Thomas Hobbes
   HAS INSTANCE=> Hume, David Hume
   HAS INSTANCE=> Husserl, Edmund Husserl
   HAS INSTANCE=> Hypatia
   HAS INSTANCE=> James, William James
   HAS INSTANCE=> Kant, Immanuel Kant
   HAS INSTANCE=> Kierkegaard, Soren Kierkegaard, Soren Aabye Kierkegaard
   HAS INSTANCE=> Lao-tzu, Lao-tse, Lao-zi
   HAS INSTANCE=> Leibniz, Leibnitz, Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz, Gottfried Wilhelm Leibnitz
   HAS INSTANCE=> Locke, John Locke
   HAS INSTANCE=> Lucretius, Titus Lucretius Carus
   HAS INSTANCE=> Lully, Raymond Lully, Ramon Lully
   HAS INSTANCE=> Mach, Ernst Mach
   HAS INSTANCE=> Machiavelli, Niccolo Machiavelli
   HAS INSTANCE=> Maimonides, Moses Maimonides, Rabbi Moses Ben Maimon
   HAS INSTANCE=> Malebranche, Nicolas de Malebranche
   HAS INSTANCE=> Marcuse, Herbert Marcuse
   HAS INSTANCE=> Marx, Karl Marx
   HAS INSTANCE=> Mead, George Herbert Mead
   HAS INSTANCE=> Mill, John Mill, John Stuart Mill
   HAS INSTANCE=> Mill, James Mill
   HAS INSTANCE=> Montesquieu, Baron de la Brede et de Montesquieu, Charles Louis de Secondat
   HAS INSTANCE=> Moore, G. E. Moore, George Edward Moore
   HAS INSTANCE=> Nietzsche, Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche
   HAS INSTANCE=> Occam, William of Occam, Ockham, William of Ockham
   HAS INSTANCE=> Origen
   HAS INSTANCE=> Ortega y Gasset, Jose Ortega y Gasset
   HAS INSTANCE=> Parmenides
   HAS INSTANCE=> Pascal, Blaise Pascal
   HAS INSTANCE=> Peirce, Charles Peirce, Charles Sanders Peirce
   HAS INSTANCE=> Perry, Ralph Barton Perry
   HAS INSTANCE=> Plato
   HAS INSTANCE=> Plotinus
   => Popper, Karl Popper, Sir Karl Raimund Popper
   HAS INSTANCE=> Pythagoras
   HAS INSTANCE=> Quine, W. V. Quine, Willard Van Orman Quine
   HAS INSTANCE=> Radhakrishnan, Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, Sir Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan
   HAS INSTANCE=> Reid, Thomas Reid
   HAS INSTANCE=> Rousseau, Jean-Jacques Rousseau
   HAS INSTANCE=> Russell, Bertrand Russell, Bertrand Arthur William Russell, Earl Russell
   HAS INSTANCE=> Schopenhauer, Arthur Schopenhauer
   HAS INSTANCE=> Schweitzer, Albert Schweitzer
   HAS INSTANCE=> Seneca, Lucius Annaeus Seneca
   HAS INSTANCE=> Socrates
   HAS INSTANCE=> Spencer, Herbert Spencer
   HAS INSTANCE=> Spengler, Oswald Spengler
   HAS INSTANCE=> Spinoza, de Spinoza, Baruch de Spinoza, Benedict de Spinoza
   HAS INSTANCE=> Steiner, Rudolf Steiner
   HAS INSTANCE=> Stewart, Dugald Stewart
   HAS INSTANCE=> Tagore, Rabindranath Tagore, Sir Rabindranath Tagore
   HAS INSTANCE=> Teilhard de Chardin, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
   HAS INSTANCE=> Thales, Thales of Miletus
   HAS INSTANCE=> Theophrastus
   HAS INSTANCE=> Weil, Simone Weil
   HAS INSTANCE=> Whitehead, Alfred North Whitehead
   HAS INSTANCE=> Williams, Sir Bernard Williams, Bernard Arthur Owen Williams
   HAS INSTANCE=> Wittgenstein, Ludwig Wittgenstein, Ludwig Josef Johan Wittgenstein
   HAS INSTANCE=> Xenophanes
   HAS INSTANCE=> Zeno, Zeno of Citium
   HAS INSTANCE=> Zeno, Zeno of Elea




--- Grep of noun maimonides
maimonides
moses maimonides



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