Questions tagged [hashkafah-philosophy]

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.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
-4
votes
0answers
91 views

Correlation? Interpreters are not Poskim and vice verse [on hold]

After asking about Yonathan Ben Uziel, Hillel's most prominent student that wrote his Targum on the Torah but left no Halachik traces in the Talmud, I have noticed that there's a pretty clear trend: ...
5
votes
0answers
216 views

The treatment of Jewish unbelievers in Halacha

There is a man, not an am ha'aretz by any means nor a Tinok Shenishba who has become an Apikores by any definition. He is not evangelical about his unbelief and is observant. He does not publicly ...
-2
votes
1answer
57 views

Contesting the line between Torah and secular knowledge [closed]

Isn't it the case that the Rambam, for one, thought that astronomy, medicine, mathematics, for examples, were a part of Torah knowledge? At least the line for him is not simple and clear cut (eg see ...
-2
votes
0answers
51 views

Understanding G-d's heroism (Gvurah)

Glorifying G-d for His heroism is an important part of our culture. Despite numerous enemies and difficulties we experience, G-d manages to save us all the time. Take the Exodus: G-d takes us to the ...
5
votes
1answer
65 views

Why are some sins counted twice?

I am looking to understand the theology behind a negative commandment being repeated in the Torah in order to make whomever transgresses it punishable for 2 sins. See for example Rashi on Vayikra 25:...
1
vote
1answer
62 views

Understanding the teaching of a person who says “I have labored in Torah study and haven't found success- don't believe him”

Megillah 6b states: ואמר ר' יצחק אם יאמר לך אדם יגעתי ולא מצאתי אל תאמן לא יגעתי ומצאתי אל תאמן יגעתי ומצאתי תאמן הני מילי בדברי תורה אבל במשא ומתן סייעתא Rabbi Yitzḥak said: If a person says ...
5
votes
8answers
1k views

Sinning and G-d's will, what's wrong with this logic?

Nothing happens against Hashem's will. Ergo, when one sins, that's also Hashem's will. Yet we know that Hashem wants us not to sin, so it's against His will. Contradiction?
0
votes
2answers
72 views

Tamim tihye and predicting the future

On the pasuk "Tamim tihye im Hashem Elokecha" (Devarim 18:13), Rashi says : Conduct yourself with Him with simplicity and depend on Him, and do not inquire of the future; rather, accept whatever ...
0
votes
0answers
27 views

Why no positive feedback from Moses in his reproof for everything Israel did good?

I'm a big fan of Positive Psychology approach to education, reinforcing positive behaviors instead of discouraging negative ones. When Moses is scolding the nations for the sins [of the previous ...
-2
votes
0answers
50 views

Why didn't Dor Hamidbar have 20 kids per family?

The Torah describes the miracles and the overall bliss and abundance of life in the desert - free unlimited food, clothes, footwear, no illnesses incl. infant mortality, etc. On the other hand, no ...
-3
votes
0answers
119 views

Could angels fall on a different planet and become aliens?

Following my answer here on aliens and Torah: G-d created (there are) extra-terrestrial celestial bodies (astronomical fact) Torah raises a possibility (according to some Midrashim/interpreters) that ...
1
vote
0answers
58 views

Why the fact that the Earth is spherical is a deep secret according to Zohar?

Following "zohars-knowledge-about-earths-shape" and related to my other question "why-did-G-d-create-the-earth-spherical": Zohar (Vayikra 10a) states the following, seemingly pointing to the fact ...
1
vote
2answers
111 views

Are people rational?

Does it say anywhere in the Sources that people are not rational? By that I mean: A certain course of action may be the most logical and common-sensical from all angles, and people do something else. ...
4
votes
0answers
106 views

Can anyone explain R. Nissim of Marseilles's seemingly problematic opinion on longevity in Genesis?

Recently, I have been looking into the idea of longevity in Genesis. Today, I stumbled upon R. Nissim of Marseilles's opinion of it, but no matter how many times I read over the article that mentioned ...
3
votes
4answers
309 views

Egalitarian references in Chazal

I'm trying to find references in Chazal to the principle that people are judged/rewarded based on the choices they make, regardless of their specific role in society. For example, I believe I have ...
3
votes
1answer
84 views

Does Judaism advise us to do one thing at a time?

After reading this article in Aish by a Professor of Jewish Studies at Yeshiva University, sadly and surprisingly bereft of Jewish sources, I asked myself: Is there a general Jewish teaching that ...
-1
votes
4answers
109 views

If it is not mentioned in the Torah as a miracle - can it be interpreted as one?

Many events in the Torah were explicit miracles - meaning that G-d's super-natural intervention was mentioned, e.g. Sarah giving birth at 100 or splitting the sea or Mannah. For many other events, no ...
0
votes
0answers
27 views

Does G-d have expiration on His tolerance?

וַיֹּאמֶר ה' אֶל־מֹשֶׁה עַד־אָנָה יְנַאֲצֻנִי הָעָם הַזֶּה וְעַד־אָנָה לֹא־יַאֲמִינוּ בִי בְּכֹל הָאֹתוֹת אֲשֶׁר עָשִׂיתִי בְּקִרְבּוֹ׃ And the LORD said to Moses, “How long will this people ...
0
votes
0answers
28 views

Was the sin of the Spies more severe than the Golden Calf? [duplicate]

IIRC, in the story of the Golden Calf, people not only actually MADE the idol but worshipped it, while in the story of Meraglim people only BELIEVED in what the Spies said. Nevertheless, after the G"...
3
votes
1answer
83 views

Legal status of one sentenced to death until execution?

What's the legal status of one who's sentenced to death by a court (say smoked on Shabbos) from the moment of the verdict till the actual death: What're his economical rights (his property, estate, ...
1
vote
0answers
47 views

Weren't Dor Hamidbar exempt from all Mitzvos as “already sentenced to death”? [duplicate]

IIRC, one who was sentenced to death is considered already dead (גברא קטילא)(San 85a, but exact source needed) (or is it only about losing his property?). When G-d sentenced all 20-60 y.o. Jews to ...
1
vote
1answer
49 views

Why Dor Hamidbar weren't given a chance to repent?

This probably echoes "why-G-d-didnt-give-adam-chance-to-repent". I'm trying to empathize Dor Hamidbar and try to imagine how would they feel, doomed by G-d Himself to die pointlessly in the ...
0
votes
0answers
34 views

Sefarim about how to respond or debate an apikores?

A friend of mine told me either the Steipler (or another gadol, my friend was not certain but recalled) wrote a Sefer concerning responding to an apikores. My main question inquires if any Sefer ...
2
votes
2answers
206 views

What did G-d do before Creation?

Is it possible to know what G-d was doing before this creation? While, as Maimonides states, that we cannot know anything about G-d except for what G-d is not (G-d has no body and is one), ...
17
votes
2answers
5k views

Do Rabbis get punished in Heaven for wrong interpretations or claims?

I had a Zchus of serving a great Rabbi Z"l here in Jerusalem who wrote lots of books on Torah as well as on Halacha and Shu"t. I helped him publishing his books for a decade and for his last years I ...
3
votes
1answer
127 views

Source for “everyone has a specific area of Torah that they're naturally drawn to”

While we have to learn the entire Torah, I remember once learning that "everyone has a specific area of Torah that they're specifically drawn to/ naturally comes easier to them" (for example: monetary ...
3
votes
2answers
158 views

Do slaves owned by jews observe shabbat (day of rest)?

To my understanding it is a commandment of God that those who live among jews observe Shabbat. Historically, slaves owned by jews must have lived among them. Does Gods commandment apply to slaves, if ...
1
vote
0answers
22 views

Suppose you hear a commandment how do you know it’s God and not your own mind, or Satan? [duplicate]

Considering God asked Abraham to kill his son, it seems difficult to differentiate the word of God from that of Satan, how is one to know from whom a commandment is given? Is there a way to ...
2
votes
0answers
62 views

How MiYodea and other knowledge-sharing sites influence the future of Judaism?

The previously unknown availability and abundance of knowledge, both religious, and scientific surely impose a serious challenge to the existing structure of Torah study. I hear many Rabbis, Ram"im, ...
0
votes
1answer
36 views

Whose spirit and whose lips are referred to in Psalms 106:33?

32וַיַּקְצִיפוּ עַל־מֵי מְרִיבָה וַיֵּרַע לְמֹשֶׁה בַּעֲבוּרָם ׃ 33: כִּי־הִמְרוּ אֶת־רוּחוֹ וַיְבַטֵּא בִּשְׂפָתָיו׃ 32: They provoked wrath at the waters of Meribah and Moses suffered on ...
1
vote
0answers
62 views

Can we know the absolute truth?

I've encountered Jewish and non-Jewish thinkers suggest that we, as finite creatures, cannot know the absolute, objective truth. All we can do (in This World), I've heard suggested, is to approach (in ...
7
votes
6answers
222 views

Are there examples of Tanaim, Amoraim,Rishonim, Achronim using secular sources for Limud Torah?

For instance, although I cannot find the source-I do believe the Vilna Gaon told a Talmid of his to translate the Elements of Euclid (Geometric proofs, inter Alia) to Hebrew in order to augment ...
4
votes
1answer
738 views

Is it possible to pray to Hashem for a specific person as your prospective spouse?

I understand in the first Amud of Masechet Sotah, an individual’s future [first] spouse is predestined. Is there a possibility of praying to Hashem, such that one may change the decree and designate a ...
-6
votes
1answer
87 views

How G-d can be distinguished from AI?

One day, after the Moshiach comes, the Earth will be filled with "knowledge of G-d". On the other hand, technologically, one day the Earth will be filled with "knowledge of AI". I'm trying to prepare ...
2
votes
0answers
46 views

Relation between brain damage and the soul

Physical damage to the brain can lead to various psychological and cognitive phenomena, like drastic changes in character, selective memory loss (like forgetting faces but remembering names or vice ...
1
vote
1answer
66 views

Does “Ein Ye'ush” apply to everything or just spiritual related things?

I have recently heard about a concept called "Ein Ye'ush Baolam Clal" ("אין יאוש בעולם כלל") which translates as "There is never a time of despair". I was wondering if this is referring to all ...
0
votes
2answers
127 views

What is the Jewish view of “work”?

What is the mainline Jewish view of "work"? (1) Work is an just an option for those who have enough money to live on. The Torah may say "Six days shall you labor and do all your work", but none of ...
0
votes
0answers
54 views

When does a person transcend to status “Tzadik sets his bar”?

Background: we had a motivational lecture in our Kollel today, with a Rabbi praising virtues of studying Torah (towards Shavuos). He brought a couple of stories about prominent Rabbis dedicating their ...
3
votes
2answers
409 views

Sources for Greek philosophy being influenced by Judaism [closed]

I'm aware of multiple sources describing exactly the opposite - the sheer influence of the Greek culture, language, economy, science and general worldview on the Sages and Judaism. The Greek culture ...
4
votes
1answer
83 views

Motivation for Miztvot

According to Bava Kamma 79b, the penalty difference between a ganav and a gazlan is that the robber does not disrespect Hashem -- he commits his crime in full view of anyone, man or God but the thief ...
-2
votes
1answer
42 views

How the crown of a good name (כתר שם טוב) was Halachicly left out?

רַבִּי שִׁמְעוֹן אוֹמֵר, שְׁלשָׁה כְתָרִים הֵם, כֶּתֶר תּוֹרָה וְכֶתֶר כְּהֻנָּה וְכֶתֶר מַלְכוּת, :וְכֶתֶר שֵׁם טוֹב עוֹלֶה עַל גַּבֵּיהֶן Rabbi Shimon said: There are three crowns: the ...
2
votes
2answers
82 views

Belief in the resurrection of the dead

I am puzzled by this line in the Mishna [Sanhedrin 10:1]: וְאֵלּוּ שֶׁאֵין לָהֶם חֵלֶק לָעוֹלָם הַבָּא, הָאוֹמֵר אֵין תְּחִיַּת הַמֵּתִים מִן הַתּוֹרָה And these are the ones who have no ...
2
votes
1answer
60 views

In the interest of being mekarev somebody is it permitted to minimize the spiritual & focus on the practical?

Are you allowed to convince an agnostic Jew to start keeping parts of the Torah for purely practical purposes like: prayer & faith have a calming effect, learning Torah sharpens the mind, Shabbos ...
3
votes
1answer
121 views

Rem"a on Socrates being Achitophel's disciple

Rama mentions that Achitophel was a teacher of Socrates, as per the Moses Isserles, Torat ha-Olah 1:11): "Socrates was said to have been his disciple" I'm not lucidly fluent in Hebrew, but here's ...
-2
votes
1answer
120 views

Why human procreation is not voluntary?

Physiologically, the process of procreation is all "out of our control", whether on the side of men or women. For example, women don't have a choice of deciding whether to get pregnant or not (think ...
5
votes
5answers
1k views

Can a person still be an Orthodox Jew and believe that the Torah contains narratives that are not scientifically correct?

I am taking the position that perhaps the Torah does contain narratives that are not scientifically correct, such as the creation and early human history narratives found in the first 11 chapters of ...
2
votes
1answer
276 views

Why is Abraham considered the “Founder of Judaism”?

Why is Abraham called 'the founder of Judaism' given that he didn't write its founding legislation, which is what 'founders' of other religions did (for example, Paul and Muhammed)? What place does ...
2
votes
0answers
63 views

A question of theodicy

A lot of people are bothered by the fact that bad things happen to good people and good things happen to bad people. Chazal answers by saying that it all averages out in the World to Come. But I don'...
1
vote
1answer
32 views

What גילוי פנים (G-d's closeness) looks like unlike הסתר פנים?

Besides some formal signs of "גילוי פנים" like the Temple or the prophecy that Am Israel enjoyed for about 1000 years from Matan Torah to the destruction of the first Temple. What are some general, ...
-3
votes
1answer
70 views

Authenticity of Zohar--Bitul Torah?

As indicated in a prior thread on this site, there is good reason to doubt the authenticity of the Zohar, i.e., that it is attributable to Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai. Question: if that is the case, ...