Category: Philosophy

People should be reasonable, not moral

                                                                                                                                                                By Israel Drazin   In my discussion on “Are intelligent people moral,” I wrote that Moses Maimonides (1138-1204) taught in his Guide of the Perplexed 1:2 that people should work to develop their thinking and understanding by studying the sciences and logic, and make life decisions based on what they learnt, on […]

An explanation of the biblical Book of Job

    The book Job is composed of three parts: a prologue, an epilogue, and the main body of the tale. Many scholars are convinced that the prologue and epilogue are later additions to the original, the body of the tale; it is different in tone and portrays God in a radically distinctive manner. These […]

Who is Gersonides?

Torah in the Observatory: Gersonides, Maimonides, Song of Songs                                         By Menachem Kellner Academic Studies Press, 2010, 374 pages   Reviewed by Israel Drazin   Menachem Kellner is one of the most knowledgeable scholars of Maimonides and Gersonides, the author of many books and articles about them and philosophy generally, and his new book is a […]

Maimonides vs. Rashi – Maimonides wins

Between Rashi and Maimonides Themes in Medieval Jewish Thought, Literature and Exeg Edited by E. Kanarfogel and M. Sokolow Ktav Publishing House, 2010, 341 pages   Reviewed by Israel Drazin   This is a collection of fifteen scholarly articles discussing the two great sages Rashi (1040-1105) and Maimonides (1138-1204) who lived almost exactly a century […]

Maimonides teaches that intellectuals should not be moral

An Intelligent Person is not Moral                                                                                                       By Israel Drazin       Morals are rules of proper conduct, what is good and what is bad. They inform people how to live a proper and safe life. Moral deeds seem to be what all people should do. But is this true?       Moses Maimonides (1138-1204) seems […]

Maimonides’ descendants rejected his philosophy

  The Treaties of the Pool By Obadyah son of Abraham son of Maimonides Translated with commentary by Paul Felton The Octagon Press, 1981, 146 pages   Maimonides (1138-1204), was the rationalist par excellence, the greatest Jewish thinker. Yet neither his son Abraham nor grandson Obadyah, who wrote this book, nor any of his descendants, […]

My Favorite Review

Readers of Gil Yehuda’s review of my book Maimonides: Reason Above All will understand why I like it better than all the other reviews about my writings.   I enjoying Dr. Israel Drazin’s book, Maimonides: Reason Above All, and I wanted to share this review.  First I’ll summarize the structure and content of the book.  Then I’ll […]

Does the Soul Survive the Body’s Death?

The Concept of the Soul and the After-Life                                       By                            Israel Drazin   Many people are afraid of death. Although there is no indication, not even a hint, in the Hebrew Bible about a soul, life after death, and an abode for people in a place called heaven, they convince themselves that […]

Why Bad Occurs to Good People

Where’s My Miracle Exploring Jewish Traditions for Dealing with Tragedy By Morey Schwartz Gefen Publishing House, 2010, 191 pages   Reviewed by Israel Drazin   Schwartz examines the many answers that Jewish sages offered to the age-old question, “Why do bad things happen to good people?” He writes in easily understandable English with full, but […]

Conversations about Maimonides

Conversations about Maimonides With Israel Drazin In view of the anniversary of Moses Maimonides’ death on December 27, 2010 – he died in 1204, 806 years ago – a reader of Dr. Israel Drazin’s four books on Maimonides asked him the following questions. Question: People say about Maimonides that “from Moses to Moses there was none […]

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