MAIMONIDES, the common name of RABBI MOSES BEN
He carefully establishes the necessity of revelation as a source of knowledge, not merely because it aids us in comprehending in a somewhat better way the truths already furnished by reason, as some of the Arabian philosophers and Maimonides had acknowledged, but because it is the absolute source of our knowledge of the mysteries of the Christian faith; and then he lays down the relations to be observed between reason and revelation, between philosophy and theology.
With this third Moses (the other two being the Biblical lawgiver and Moses Maimonides) a new era opens in the history of the Jewish people.
About 1180), in philosophy an Aristotelian (through Avicenna) and the precursor of Maimonides, is chiefly known for his Sepher haqabbalah, written as a polemic against Karaism, but valuable for the history of tradition.
The greatest of all medieval Jewish scholars was Moses ben Maimon (Rambam), called Maimonides by Christians.
Maimonides also wrote an Arabic commentary on the Mishnah, soon afterwards translated into Hebrew, commentaries on parts of the Talmud (now lost), and a treatise on Logic. His breadth of view anti- and his Aristotelianism were a stumbling-block to the orthodox, and subsequent teachers may be mostly classified as Maimonists or anti-Maimonists.
His whole tendency was as conservative as that of Maimonides was liberal, and like all conservatives he may be said to represent a lost though not necessarily a less desirable cause.
His greatest work is the commentary on the Pentateuch in opposition to Maimonides and Ibn Ezra.
In the first half of the 13th century, Abraham ibn Ilasdai, a vigorous supporter of Maimonides, translated (or adapted) a large number of philosophical works from Arabic, among them being the Sepher ha-tappuah, based on Aristotle's de Anima, and the Mozene Zedeq of Ghazzali on moral philosophy, of both of which the originals are lost.
He wrote numerous translations, of Galen, Aristotle, Ilariri, IIunain ben Isaac and Maimonides, as well as several original works, a Sepher Anaq in imitation of Moses ben Ezra, and treatises on grammar and medicine (Rephuath geviyyah), but he is best known for his Talzkemoni, a diwan in the style of Ilariri's Magimat.
His son Samuel, who died at Marseilles about 1230, was equally prolific. He translated the Moreh Nebhukhim during the life of the author, and with some help from him, so that this may be regarded as the authorized version; Maimonides' commentary on the Mishnah tractate Pirge.Abhoth, and some minor works; treatises of Averroes and other Arabic authors.
His son Moses, who died about the end of the 13th century, translated the rest of Maimonides, much of Averroes, the lesser Canon of Avicenna, Euclid's Elements (from the Arabic version), Ibn al-Jazzar's Viaticum, medical works of IIunain ben Isaac (Johannitius) and Razi (Rhazes), besides works of less-known Arabic authors.
France, probably for the same reason which caused the flight of Maimonides, and died there about 1170.
About 1270), who had studied in France, wrote the fan.ous Or Zarua` (from which he is often called), an halakhic work somewhat resembling Maimonides' Mishneh Torah, but more diffuse.
About 1340), wrote poems (Behinath ha-`olam), commentaries on agada and a defence of Maimonides against Solomon Adreth.
Joseph's son Shem Tobh was, on the contrary, a follower of Maimonides and the Aristotelians.
1865), a distinguished scholar and opponent of the philosophy of Maimonides, wrote much in Italian; M.
The Milhamoth is throughout modelled after the plan of the great work of Jewish philosophy, the Moreh Nebuhim of Moses Maimonides, and may be regarded as an elaborate criticism from the more philosophical point of view (mainly Averroistic) of the syncretism of Aristotelianism and Jewish orthodoxy as presented in that work.
So, too, the greatest Jew of the middle ages, Maimonides, was a Spaniard.
If Maimonides represented Judaism on its rational side, Rashi was the expression of its traditions.
In Jewish practice the concluding feast is not held in booths, and Maimonides (More*, iii.
Maimonides had brought Jewish thought entirely under the domination of Aristotle.
I I) is difficult to explain, though Maimonides perhaps correctly regarded the law as a protest against heathenism (on the magical use of representatives of the animal and vegetable kingdom, in conjunction with a metal ring, see I.
The famous Rabbi Maimonides (A.D.
Maimonides, in his More Nevochim, states that the use of intense in the worship of the Jews originated as a corrective of the disagreeable odours arising from the slaughter and burning of the animals offered in sacrifice.
The descendant of men learned in rabbinic lore, Abba Mari devoted himself to the study of theology and philosophy, and made himself acquainted with the writing of Moses Maimonides and Nachmanides as well as with the Talmud.
In Montpellier, where he lived from 1303 to 1306, he was much distressed by the prevalence of Aristotelian rationalism, which, through the medium of the works of Maimonides, threatened the authority of the Old Testament, obedience to the law, and the belief in miracles and revelation.
From 1838 to 1863 he lived in Breslau, where he organized the reform movement in Judaism and wrote some of his most important works, including Lehrand Lesebuch zur Sprache der Mischna (1845), Studien from Maimonides (1850), translation into German of the poems of Juda ha-Levi (1851), and Urschrift and Obersetzungen der Bibel in ihrer Abhangigkeit von der innern Entwickelung des Judentums (1857).
Maimonides suggested that the episode of the Angel and the conversation with the ass is an account of a vision; similar views have been held by E.
Zu Moses Maimonides (Breslau, 1863).
(c) Midrash ha-Gadol (" the great "), an extensive thesaurus, but later (quoting from Ibn Ezra, Maimonides, &c.); the arrangement is not so careful as in (a) and (b).
With letters of recommendation from Saladin's vizier, he visited Egypt, where the wish he had long cherished to converse with Maimonides, "the Eagle of the Doctors," was gratified.
Averroes, rejected by his Moslem countrymen, found a hearing among the Jews, to whom Maimonides had shown the free paths of Greek speculation.
It was amongst them, especially in Maimonides, that Aristotelianism found refuge after the light of philosophy was extinguished in Islam; and the Jewish family of the Ben-Tibbon were mainly instrumental in making Averroes known to southern France.
A century later Maimonides was to give a new turn to Jewish thought, by the assimilation of Aristotelianism with Mosaism, but Rashi was a traditionalist pure and simple.
Maimonides owed a good deal to him.
The Hebrew part (commented on by Maimonides), in which numerous fasts are recommended, is of considerably later date.
He endeavoured to steer a middle course between the worshippers and the excommunicators of Maimonides, but he did not succeed in healing the breach.
He occupies an important position in the history of the acceptance by medieval Jews of the Kabbala (q.v.); for, though he made no fresh contributions to the philosophy of mysticism, the fact that this famous rabbi was himself a mystic induced a favourable attitude in many who would other- 'wise have rejected mysticism as Maimonides did.
A large number of charitable and other public institutions have been established in the United States and elsewhere by the order, of which may be mentioned the large orphan asylum in Cleveland, the home for the aged and infirm at Yonkers, N.Y., the National Jewish hospital for consumptives at Denver, and the Maimonides library in New York City.
Under these teachers he became familiar with the Talmud and, what was probably more important for his own development, with the philosophical writings of Ibn Ezra and Maimonides, Levi ben Gerson, Hasdai Crescas, and other representatives of Jewish medieval thought, who aim at combining the traditional theology with ideas got from Aristotle and his Neoplatonic commentators.
Important also are the introduction to and commentary upon the Mishnah by Maimonides (q.v.), and the commentary of Rabbenu Obadiah di Bertinoro (died 1510).