The Rambam, or Maimonides, was a famous 12th century Rabbi, philosopher, and physician. He wrote the Mishneh Torah and the Moreh Nevuchim (Guide to the Perplexed).

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

20
votes
9answers
3k views

If Christianity is avodah zarah and Islam is not, why has the Christian world triumphed over the non-Christian, and why do Jews prefer to live among Christians and not Muslims?

The Rambam quite clearly considered Christianity to be avodah zarah. He did not feel the same way about Islam, however, going so far as to condone praying within a mosque, and many Orthodox Jewish ...
19
votes
3answers
807 views

How can the Rambam's Eighth Principle of Jewish Faith be believed in light of Hazal?

The Rambam's eighth Principle of Jewish Faith states that the entire Torah in our possession - every verse - was dictated to Mosheh Rabbenu and that it has not changed. However, we have explicit ...
19
votes
5answers
981 views

Did the Rambam believe in magic?

If you read through Chapter 11 of the Rambam's laws on Idol Worship, you'll see what seems to be the Rambam forbidding anything that even resembles magic, all while calling such practices foolish and ...
16
votes
5answers
466 views

What are Rambam's “עיקרים”?

Rambam, in his Commentary to the Mishna (Sanhedrin 10), enumerates 13 "עיקרים" or "יסודות", which he holds are the core "principles" that every Jew is expected to believe. (Summary in English.) But ...
14
votes
7answers
1k views

How can the Rebbe be considered Moshiach?

I've talked to various Chabad Rabbis, and I can say for certain that at least 1 definitely believes that the Rebbe could be Moshiach. In trying to prove this, he cites Rambam's Mishneh Torah (...
12
votes
2answers
108 views

Did Rabbeinu Yonah write Shaarei Teshuva in response to the burning of the Gemara?

It is widely believed that Rabbeinu Yonah played a part in having the Rambam's works burned around 1232, and that after the 1242 burning of twenty-four wagonloads of Gemaras he felt that it was a ...
11
votes
3answers
903 views

Why are people going back to paskining like the Rambam?

I have heard personally (and seen in chat) people (who are not Teimanim [for whom there is a tradition to rule like the Rambam]) ruling like the Rambam. I have heard that he has the authentic ...
11
votes
3answers
268 views

Does Maimonides Allow Prayer to Angels?

In his Mishna Commentary to Sanhedrin 10:1 Maimonides lists as his 5th principle the prohibition to pray to an angel even as an intermediary. He counts this in his enumeration of his 13 principles in ...
11
votes
1answer
455 views

Are Segulot a Prohibition of Nichush?

Rambam Hilchot Avodat Kochavim 11:12 writes: הלוחש על המכה וקורא פסוק מן התורה, וכן הקורא על התינוק שלא יבעת, והמניח ספר תורה או תפילין על הקטן בשביל שיישן - לא די להם שהם בכלל מנחשים וחוברים, אלא ...
10
votes
1answer
466 views

Differences between RaMbaM and RaMbaN's mitzvah count

I know both of the Rambam and Ramban listed all 613 mitzvos, and they differ in some (I think like 16ish?) What are the ones upon which they differ? If possible please include why they differ in ...
10
votes
2answers
149 views

Why didn't the Tur discuss traditional Jewish philosophy?

Of all classical works of Halacha, only the Rambam has a section dedicated "Hilchos Deos". For example, he begins with the most fundamental Jewish belief, the belief in one G-d, that G-d is the ...
10
votes
2answers
375 views

Is it ever a Chillul Hashem to discuss Torah principles?

The Rambam explains one type of Chillul Hashem as follows (מיי' הל' יסודי התורה פ"ה הי"ד): ויש דברים אחרים שהם בכלל חילול השם, והוא שיעשה אדם גדול בתורה ומפורסם בחסידות, דברים שהברייות מרננים ...
10
votes
0answers
676 views

Where did the “a cat will always be a cat” story about the Rambam come from?

I've seen and heard a story about the Rambam told multiple times along the lines of this particularly concise retelling: There is a beautiful story of a disagreement that Maimonides had with a ...
9
votes
1answer
338 views

Is one allowed to become a Talmid HaRambam?

There is a movement of people (including several MiYodeya users I've seen) who believe in following the teachings of the Rambam exclusively, basing their practical halachot off the Mishneh Torah, ...
9
votes
7answers
237 views

Beginning a comprehensive study of Moreh N'vuchim

A friend of mine would like to begin learning Moreh N'vuchim seriously and is unsure of exactly where/with what to start. What is the best version out there of the book itself? Are there any ...
9
votes
2answers
429 views

How did Rambam eliminate “ben gilo” from the halacha?

The gemara in Elu Metzios (Bava Metzia 30b) says: אמר מר (אשר) ילכו - זה ביקור חולים. היינו גמילות חסדים! לא נצרכה אלא לבן גילו ,דאמר מר בן גילו נוטל אחד מששים בחליו ,ואפי' הכי מבעי ליה ...
9
votes
1answer
362 views

What shape were the branches on the Menorah in the Beit Hamikdash?

What shape were the branches on the Menorah in the Beit Hamikdash? I have seen the diagram by the Rambam where he depicts it with angular branches. I am looking for sources in halacha (i.e. sources ...
9
votes
1answer
726 views

Is there positive proof that the Rambam did not accept Kabbalah?

I have heard many times that the Rambam's omission of mystical ideas is proof, or evidence, of his rejection thereof. However, if one accepts the authenticity of Kabbalah as being a legitimate ...
8
votes
2answers
112 views

Source for a story: Rambam paskening people out of heaven

I'm sorry to ask a source-seeking question (because I don't like seeing them myself), but I'm at a loss here in trying to find what I think is a theologically important Hassidic story. The story goes ...
8
votes
1answer
294 views

What does Maimonides say about geocentrism?

I have read that Maimonides described the universe in a geocentric fashion, but I have not been able to find the specific passages to which they refer. What does Maimonides say about geocentrism?
8
votes
2answers
442 views

Moreh Nevuchim: To learn or not to learn?

I have come across many people who believe that it is inappropriate to learn Moreh Nevuchim especially at a younger inexperienced age. However, it seems that many important issues are discussed in the ...
8
votes
1answer
355 views

Yemenite shofar not from sheep

I've heard that Yemenite Jews follow the Rambam for halacha generally, and Wikipedia concurs. The Rambam writes that one must use a sheep's horn as the shofar on Rosh Hashana. Shulchan Aruch is less ...
8
votes
2answers
151 views

Why does the 5th verse of “Yigdal”, not mention prayer as does the 5th principle of faith of the Rambam?

The piyyut, “Yigdal”, seems to put the 13 principles of faith of the Rambam in poetic form. With number 5, the author of Yigdal seems to have made a slightly different point to the Rambam by leaving ...
8
votes
5answers
350 views

Why does the belief in Mashiach require that one be anxious for his coming?

The question of why belief in Mashiach should be a fundamental belief (an ikkar/yesod of Judaism of the Rambam's 13) is asked here, and I answered it myself here. However, when it comes to this ...
8
votes
1answer
132 views

Who is the author of the Pirush on the first four chapters of Rambam's Hilchos Yesodei HaTorah?

The first four chapters of Hilchos Yesodei HaTorah have a lengthy commentary that is titled simply "פירוש". In standard editions of the Rambam, it wraps around the text, facing the "כסף משנה" (see ...
8
votes
1answer
118 views

Did Rambam have Rashi's works?

While the Rambam lived a century after Rashi, I cannot recall ever seeing or hearing the Rambam cite or mention Rashi or any of his works. Is there any evidence that Rambam had access to Rashi's ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

The meaning of Tzadik

I am having difficulty in understand the meaning of Tzadik. Maimonides says "One whose merit surpasses his iniquity is a tzadik". I have trouble in understanding this sentence. Can someone explain the ...
7
votes
4answers
574 views

Uncensored Mishneh Torah

Where can I find the uncensored Mishneh Torah online, or cheap in print?
7
votes
2answers
93 views

“Hagahos MaimoniYOS”?

Is the correct title for the work abbreviated "ה"מ" "Hagahos Maimoni" or "Hagahos Maimoniyos"?
7
votes
1answer
131 views

Which came first the Mishnah Torah or the Pirush HaMishnayos

Which sefer did the Ramabm author first, was it his Mishnah Torah (Yad HaChazaka) or his commentary to Mishnayos?
7
votes
5answers
335 views

Why is resurection of the dead a fundamental of faith according to the Rambam?

The Rambam defines the resurrection of the dead as a fundamental of Judaism. However, unlike the Ramban, the Rambam holds that first there is Moshiach, then resurrection, and then the final result of ...
7
votes
2answers
164 views

What financial arrangement did Rambam have with his jeweler brother?

I was taught in yeshiva that as a young man, Rambam just studied Torah and was supported by his brother, who was a jewel merchant. Then his brother died at sea, so Rambam became a physician. Recently ...
7
votes
3answers
720 views

Rambam on Olam Haba, Mashiach, and Techiyat haMeitim

Could somebody explain to me briefly what the Rambam's opinion is about the sequence of events with Olam HaBa, the Mashiach and Techiyat haMeitim? It seems that he's saying that when a person dies ...
7
votes
3answers
476 views

Is there any precedent to read the first 11 chapters of Genesis as metaphorical?

I believe this will be related to a similar question about a statement by Rabbi Sacks. Rabbi Jeremy Wieder said in a lecture titled Non Literal Interpretation of Scripture in Jewish Tradition (and ...
7
votes
3answers
581 views

Was Rambam affected by Islam?

Was Rambam's philosophy affected in any way by Islamic culture or religion? If so, could that influence have influenced his interpretation of halacha? This question is inspired by an ongoing ...
7
votes
2answers
503 views

Maimonides and Sacrifices as G-d's concession to Mankind

I've been bothered by this contradiction in Rambam: He says in Moreh Nevuchim 3:32 that sacrifices are a concession and that it would not have been good to introduce the truthest most pure form of ...
7
votes
2answers
125 views

How would the splitting of the sea have been done with magic if magic is just trickery?

In the spirit of the recent Mi Yodeya discussion of the Rambam's view of magic, a question that has bothered me for some time: The Rambam ostensibly doesn't accept that there is any reality to magic, ...
7
votes
1answer
111 views

Where can I find an English version of Rambam's Introduction to Mishnah?

I am looking for an online copy of an English translation to Rambam's introduction to the whole Mishna. I have found a few copies in Hebrew, but I am looking for something legible and understandable ...
7
votes
1answer
241 views

Rambam claiming some of Hazal were superstitious

I forgot where, but I remember reading the Rambam z"l saying that some Hazal believed in superstitions, ideas such as ayeen haro because they lived in small villages with lack of science, and ...
6
votes
4answers
3k views

Jews allowed to pray and join Muslim congregation in Mosques and Experiences

I had read somewhere in Maimonidian literature that Jews are allowed to pray in Mosques. Is it even allowed for them to Join the Muslim congregation and pray the Salat for they worship the same God (...
6
votes
6answers
791 views

Why don't we just follow the shittah of Moshe Rabeinu?

My question can apply to virtually all mitzvos where there is a disagreement in the standard way to fulfill them. If one reads the hakdama (introduction) to the Rambam's peirush mishnayos (commentary ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

How often should one have marital intercourse with his wife?

What is the frequency of marital intercourse prescribed by Halacha? I am confused as the Talmud in Ketubot 61b says that for men of independent means it is every day. But the Rambam in Mishneh ...
6
votes
3answers
162 views

Are the works of Maimonides treated as divinely inspired?

How are the writings of Moses Maimonides typically "seen" by Jews? Are his works considered to be directly inspired by God (such as the Tanakh) and therefore infallible, or are they considered to be "...
6
votes
1answer
113 views

Rambam Quote About Books

Where can this quote be found in Rambam: "Do not consider it proof just because it is written in books, for a liar who will deceive with his tongue will not hesitate to do the same with his pen."?
6
votes
1answer
153 views

Mishneh Torah Artwork

In my yeshiva there is a library that has many very old seforim. While exploring the library I came across a volume of the Mishneh Torah which seems to be from 1574. I opened it and was surprised to ...
6
votes
2answers
56 views

Sources for Rambam

Is there a commentary on Mishneh Torah that connects the Rambam's words to his source in the gemara? I'm looking for something similar to the Be'er Hagola to the Shulhan Arukh, or an inverse En ...
6
votes
2answers
163 views

How is knowledge of G-d different from any other knowledge?

The Rambam, in his Morei Nevuchim, says that when it comes to knowledge about G-d, we can only know what G-d is not. I.e. He is not limited in space, or time, He does not have property A, nor does he ...
6
votes
2answers
156 views

Rambam on Planting non-fruit trees on Shemita

The Yerushalmi in Sheviit 4:4 says: וכן היה רשב״ג אומר נוטעין אילן סרק בשביעית So too Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel would say - one may plant non-fruit trees on the seventh then RaMBa"M goes and ...
6
votes
0answers
105 views

Eliyahu HaNavi's role in Moshiach's arrival according to the Rambam

The Rambam says in Hilchos Malachim 12:2: There are some Sages who say that Elijah's coming will precede the coming of the Mashiach. All these and similar matters cannot be definitely known by man ...
6
votes
0answers
61 views

Losing concentration in the middle of the first blessing of Shemoneh Esrei

First, a little background information: According to halakhah, there are two types of berakhoth: "long" and "short." "Long" *berakhoth" are those that have a pethihah ("opening", i.e. "Barukh Atah ...