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The Maimonides Library for Philosophy and Religion aims to present a wide spectrum of studies and texts that cover philosophy and religion in a Jewish context, broadly construed. The series seeks to explore connections, tensions, and dialectics between philosophy and religion in Jewish tradition through monographs, collected volumes, scholarly translations, and critical editions of key texts. Special emphasis will be given to unearth sceptical elements within Jewish thought and in relation to other traditions, as well as to its interactions with the scientific and intellectual climate in which it is situated.
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Does God Doubt? shows that Rabbi Gershon Henoch Leiner of Radzin considered God to be revealed as doubt. Thus, according to this profound and important nineteenth-century Hasidic leader, doubt is an essential aspect of the human condition, and especially of religious life. His position is shown to be remarkably bold and unique compared to kabbalistic writing, and especially to the Hasidic worlds to which he belonged. At the same time, the roots of his thought are located in earlier discussions of doubt as one of the highest parts of the divine world. Doubt about, in, and of God is part of the Hasidic contribution to modernity.
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Much of the most recent research on Jewish scepticism was inspired by the work of the early modern Venetian rabbi Simone Luzzatto, the first thinker in the history of Jewish thought to declare himself a sceptic and a follower of the New Academy. This collected volume shines new light on the intimate relationship between Luzzatto’s sceptical thinking and an era marked by paradoxes and contrasts between religious devotion and scientific rationalism, as well as between the rabbinic-biblical Jewish tradition and the open tendency towards engagement with non-Jewish philosophical, literary, scientific, and theological cultures. It plots out an original path along which to understand Luzzatto’s scepticism by pointing to the various facets of being a Jewish sceptic in seventeenth-century Italy.
This series is no longer published by Brill
Johann Albrecht Widmanstetter (1506–1557), humanist and privy councillor to popes and kings, has remained an enigmatic figure among Christian Hebraists whose views were little understood. This study leverages Widmanstetter's remarkable collection consisting of hundreds of Jewish manuscripts and printed books, most of which survive to this day. Explore in the first half the story of Jewish book production and collecting in sixteenth-century Europe through Widmanstetter's book acquisitions, librarianship, and correspondence. Delve into his unique perspective on Jewish literature and Kabbalah as the latter half of the study contextualizes the marginal notes in his library with his published works.
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The Andalusian Muslim philosopher Averroes (1126–1198) is known for his authoritative commentaries on Aristotle and for his challenging ideas about the relationship between philosophy and religion, and the place of religion in society. Among Jewish authors, he found many admirers and just as many harsh critics. This volume brings together, for the first time, essays investigating Averroes’s complex reception, in different philosophical topics and among several Jewish authors, with special attention to its relation to the reception of Maimonides.
A New Philosophical Dialogue in Hebrew
All can agree that the achievement of Moses Maimonides (d. 1204) set the standard for subsequent works of “Jewish philosophy”. But just what were the contours of philosophical-scientific inquiry that Maimonides replaced? A fairly large array of diverse texts have been studied, but no comprehensive picture has yet emerged. The newly discovered Hebrew dialogue published here has points of contact of various depth with most of the major works of pre-Maimonidean thought. It shares as well influences from without, especially from the Islamic kalam. The dialogue thus presents, in an engaging literary form, a clear and detailed snapshot of pre-Maimonidean philosophy and science.
The present volume contains articles based on papers delivered at the two international conferences organized as part of the Between Two Worlds research project in 2017 and 2019. Obadiah Sforno was an influential Jewish thinker of sixteenth-century Italian Renaissance, whose religious and exegetical authority has had an enduring legacy. The collected essays offer an unprecedented and much desired overview of his life and thought with an emphasis on the neglected philosophical dimension of his oeuvre, as seen in both his biblical commentaries and his sole philosophical treatise Light of the Nations.