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Abstract

Inasmuch as new Coptic evidence for 2 Enoch lends confirmation to the priority of the shorter recension and adds plausibility to the theory of its Egyptian provenance, this discovery invites us to shift from the compilation of parallel motifs towards more integrative approaches to contextualizing this enigmatic apocalypse. This essay is an experiment in situating 2 Enoch within the intellectual culture of early Roman Egypt. It explores the possibility that the short recension reflects the translation of the Mesopotamian astronomy and Jewish cosmology of earlier Aramaic Enoch writings into Greek language and idiom in interaction with philosophical and “scientific” concerns with the cosmos current in early Roman Egypt.

In: The Journal of Jewish Thought and Philosophy

Abstract

Abraham Joshua Heschel's oeuvre deals with the continuum of Jewish religious consciousness from the biblical and rabbinic periods through the kabbalistic and Hasidic ones with regard to God's concern for humanity. The goal of this study is to show how such a “Nachmanidean” reading has partially displaced the discontinuous “Maimonidean” reading promoted by Yehezkel Kaufman, Ephraim Urbach, and Gershom Scholem. The result is that Heschel's understanding of the development of Jewish theologizing is more influential now than it was during his lifetime. This study traces the growth of that development and explores how Heschel became the scholar-theologian who most succeeded in bridging the gap between scholarship and constructive theology.

In: The Journal of Jewish Thought and Philosophy

This article discusses the anonymous early kabbalistic work Sefer Maʿayan ha-Ḥokhmah (The Book of the Fountain of Wisdom), one of the pivotal works of ʿIyyun literature. The first part deals with the book’s historical and literary aspects. The second part interprets a specific formulation in light of the basic ideas of the book itself, presenting the twofold pattern as a mystical type and as a grounding for linguistic-theological theory. The third part discusses the term “positive theology” in the theosophical and religious dimension, from the phenomenological perspective of extrovertive mysticism, and as a linguistic structure that provides the layer of signs as a stable basis for the restrained progress of Tongue. Acquiring the source as hidden but attendant by its constant grounding as a part of linguistic progression, uses the bifocal sight of binary extrovertive mysticism to denote the twofold structure of each being and each part of speech.

In: The Journal of Jewish Thought and Philosophy

Abstract

Writing in 1935 as "Hugo Fiala," Karl Löwith not only connected Martin Heidegger and Carl Schmitt to an apparently contentless "decisionism" but drew attention to the fact that his correspondent Leo Strauss (1899–1973) had attacked Schmitt—like Heidegger an open Nazi since 1933—from the Right in 1932. In opposition to the views of Peter Eli Gordon, Heidegger's bellicose stance at the Davos Hochschule of 1929 is presented as "political" in Schmitt's sense of the term while Strauss's embrace of Heidegger, never regretted, showed that he ceased to be Nietzsche's "Good European" in his thirtieth year. A more significant "change of orientation" is revealed in Strauss's 1932 version of the "second cave," a pseudo-Platonic image of Verjudung. Revelation had disrupted a nihilistic "natural ignorance" that could only be reversed by an elite's secret decision for a self-contradictory content: only an atheistic religion provides a post-liberal solution to "the theological-political problem."

In: The Journal of Jewish Thought and Philosophy
In: The Journal of Jewish Thought and Philosophy