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The Creation of the World According to Gersonides (Brown Judaic Studies 24) Paperback – 1982

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Product Details

  • Series: Brown Judaic studies
  • Paperback: 422 pages
  • Publisher: Scholars Pr (1982)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0891305262
  • ISBN-13: 978-0891305262
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,548,101 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Paperback
It is worth one's time to read about Gersonides, including this book by a noted scholar. Gersonides' books are not very easy to read, but they are very thoughtful. He was one of several great Jewish rationalistic philosophers, along with Maimonides and Abraham ibn Ezra. He was not as a deep a thinker as these two men, but he was far more intellectual than most people. He lived in Provence, France, between 1288 and 1344. He wrote books on philosophy, science, and Bible commentary. He had unconventional opinions that the public doesn't know or misunderstands: ideas about God, creation, miracles, prophecy, life, death, the functioning of the world, and human responsibilities. Some of his ideas would be considered terrible today, such as his notion that women are mediocre creations between animals and men. But other ideas are quite sound and still others thought-provoking.

He stressed that human perfection is based on an improved and effective use of reason, not tradition or beliefs. Individuals should study the sciences, how the world functions. He was convinced that the Bible teaches philosophy, not only history and laws. He felt that God created the world out of preexisting matter, which God formed into the currently existing universe. He felt certain that the world will last forever. He wrote that people should reject superstitions, but he accepted many of them. He also accepted as true many biblical tales that are contrary to reason, tales that Maimonides said were untrue, just parables or dreams, such as Jacob wrestling with an angel. Gersonides rejected the generally held view that a person's soul survives the body's death. He felt that only people's intellect lives after them.
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The Creation of the World According to Gersonides (Brown Judaic Studies 24)
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