Jewish philosophy as well as Jewish perspectives - i.e. not only formal philosophy. NOT for questions about Jewish practice unless there's a philosophical component.

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5
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2answers
159 views

Modern Traditionalist Scholars Combatting Critical Approaches to the Tanach

I know that Shadal, David Hoffman, and many others tried very hard to combat the claims of scholars that criticized the Torah (both in terms of Higher and Lower Criticism). Can anyone help me find ...
16
votes
4answers
533 views

Why is Sha'ar Ha'Yichud of Chovos Ha'Levavos so “controversial”?

I have heard that Sha'ar Ha'Yichud of Chovos Ha'Levavos is controversial, and that one needs a rebbe in order to learn it. What does the author say that is so difficult to understand?
2
votes
4answers
193 views

“Law of Attraction”?

Are there any Jewish responses to the "Law of Attraction" or analyses of this idea in the context of Jewish thought?
11
votes
5answers
611 views

Do Jews believe in Heaven and Hell?

In yeshiva I was always told about gan eden and gehinnom, and how the good go to the former place while the bad go to the latter. However, in popular culture, Jews are always said to not believe in ...
2
votes
2answers
75 views

When can we daven for a neis? [closed]

Riddle version of the question: When can we daven for a neis Hashkafic version of the question: Why does it seem that we can daven for a neis, when this is explicitly forbidden in masechet Brachot?
3
votes
3answers
496 views

Bad Jew or Good Gentile?

Whom does Hashem love more: Gentiles who love Jewish people and Israel or Jews who are against Jewish people and Israel?
14
votes
6answers
796 views

does one have to take a Midrash/Aggadah literally?

Does one have to take a Midrash/Aggadah literally?
14
votes
7answers
329 views

“I never saw a tzaddik be abandoned…” - how do we understand this?

At the end of bentching we say that "I was young, and I also became old, and I never saw a righteous person be abandoned, and his children asking for bread". How do we reconcile that with the ...
12
votes
4answers
334 views

Voting for a person that will not uphold Torah values

It is well known that Rabbi Avigdor Miller Zatzal strongly condemned those that voted for candidates that would not uphold Torah values. Yet there were many Gedolim that had no problem voting for such ...
7
votes
4answers
184 views

If the odds are against you in life (Bais Shammai's opinion), why did G-d bother?

I'm asking this question only because I recall hearing an answer, but unfortunately I don't remember the answer, or from which rabbi. Help me please? Mesilas Yesharim says G-d made creation out of ...
4
votes
1answer
69 views

Why does the Rambam require repentance, and not just more good deeds, before Yom Kippur?

The Rambam says if someone's virtues-vs-sins balance is even as of Rosh Hashanah, their verdict happens on yom kippur. If they did teshuva in those ten days, they get a pass; if not, they don't. ...
3
votes
2answers
268 views

How do you understand the Rambam on Free choice in Teshuvah 5:5?

What is the Rambam really bothered by in Teshuvah 5:5? רמב"ם הלכות תשובה פרק ה הלכה ה שמא תאמר והלא הקב"ה יודע כל מה שיהיה וקודם שיהיה ידע שזה יהיה צדיק או רשע או לא ידע, אם ידע שהוא יהיה צדיק אי ...
13
votes
5answers
10k views

What does Kadosh really mean?

What do the terms קדוש (Kadosh), קדושים, קדושה, and קדיש really mean?
9
votes
2answers
177 views

Yearning for Moshiach while the Temples stood

Did we (the Jewish people) yearn for the complete Redemption (with the Techias HaMasim, etc) like we do today, at the time the either Temple was standing? It can't be that we just assumed "This is ...
10
votes
2answers
357 views

Different types of Nevuah

What are the differences between the "typical" navi's prophecy, Moshe Rabbeinu's prophecy, and Bil'am HaRasha's prophecy? (Answers with sources [and preferably links to sources] only please!)
6
votes
3answers
161 views

How to define success in life?

What defines success in life (in a Jewish outlook)?
6
votes
2answers
148 views

Is diversity a Jewish value?

We hear a lot about the value of diversity these days, especially in academic settings. What about in hashkafa? Does "shivim panim l'Torah" teach that diversity is to be valued, and to what degree? ...
3
votes
4answers
705 views

Are Jews racist against non-Jews? [closed]

Are Jews racist against non-Jews?
2
votes
2answers
121 views

Choices before birth

Before we are born do we pick who will be our parents, guides, and rebbaim in life?
-3
votes
3answers
222 views

Why did Hashem make some non-Kosher animals look like Kosher ones?

Why did Hashem make animals like the pig, camel, etc. that have one exact character trait of kosher animals and then write in the Torah that they aren't kosher? If He's trying to trick us, shouldn't ...
10
votes
3answers
244 views

Can our deceased relatives observe us?

People often say (e.g. at s'machot and other such events) things like "Grandpa Chaim would have loved to be here today, but we know he is smiling down on us from shamayim" Is this really a ...
4
votes
3answers
77 views

Helping others succeed

What do you do when you are trying to help friends get themselves on a good track, but you are afraid that by helping them you yourself might fall...what is the Torah obligation here?
7
votes
6answers
311 views

Will money fall from the sky if you pray for it?

If you daven for a parnasah and then just sit back will money come to you?
0
votes
2answers
75 views

is it right to set goals?

is it right to set goals for yourself? how do you know that hashem knows you can accomplish more than the goal you have now? how do you know that hashem knows you bit more than you can chew?
2
votes
2answers
155 views

Geihinom and Gan Eden

What are Gohenom and Gan Eden? Is it common to go to Gohenom before Gan Eden?
6
votes
4answers
369 views

Hashem is here and there and everywhere?

Is Hashem really in front of us, behind us, next to us, etc?
11
votes
9answers
657 views

do we really have free choice?

I was told Hashem created us with free will; so we can make a choice to do good or evil, right? Well, Hashem knows what we are going to do in 10 minutes. So do we really have free will? Hashem can see ...
2
votes
2answers
66 views

A persons potential

It says that a persons potential keeps rising as his spiritual level rises. If so, how does a person reach his potential?
6
votes
4answers
233 views

do we get another chance to reach shamayim if we missed our goal once?

I have heard that there is a task for everyone to fulfill before they enter shamayim, but what happens if you had a chance to fulfill your task in life and you missed it? do you get a different task? ...
11
votes
10answers
455 views

Any primary sources that all Jewish males should l'chatchila stay in learning forever?

Does anyone know of any specific sources in Chazal or Rishonim (or even earlier achronim) that indicate that l'chatchila all Jewish males should learn full time forever? I know that this is the ...
6
votes
2answers
191 views

Image of God: Equality and Discrimination

I have heard from many unreliable sources that the Torah's description of mankind as being "in the Image of God" implies some level of equal standing of all humans and therefore the expectation ...