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#81 Guest_melech_*

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Posted 12 June 2005 - 03:28 PM

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#82 shim

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Posted 12 June 2005 - 03:31 PM

Shim, since halachah changes, does it matter that 3000 years ago a certain concept wouldn't have been considered heresy if today it is?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Probably not. But of course I want the answer to be yes, since I don't want the dor ha-midbar not to have olam habaah. But I also want the answer to be no, since I don't want people to not have olam habaah if in the future they believe dinosaurs lived 200 million years ago, for example. So one wished there was some sort of objective standard.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Why would what we rule today impact retroactively the dor ha-midbar?
If during a certain time the halachah would be something, I'd imagine that generation would be judged by the standards of that particular generation, not ours. So someone pre-Rambam, when lots of different ideas concerning the nature of God were circulating, such as those concerning anthropomorphism, would not have lost her portion in olam ha-ba for what today would be heresy. However, since halachah changes, I can no longer entertain ideas about the nature of God that had been acceptable pre-Rambam.
I haven't thought this through, but maybe same thing concerning the age of the world. Let's say, for argument's sake, many holy commentators used to feel comfortable declaring the age of the world to be over 6000 years. Now let's say, for argument's sake, the new Sanhedrin declares the world to be 5765 years old and all the Jews of the world accept this ruling. I'd imagine that henceforth any declaration of a 6000+ year old world would be heresy, even if it hadn't been heresy in the time of the Tifereth Yisrael or R. Schwab.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

That list bit is what I meant by the end of my post.

#83 Guest_melech_*

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Posted 12 June 2005 - 04:01 PM

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#84 TipuseiHarim

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Posted 12 June 2005 - 06:30 PM

Denial of any one of the ikkarei emunah.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Do you mean the 13 or any ikkarei emunah?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


You know of others? Acc. to the Rambam, those are the ikkarei emunah.

The definition I gave is a good working one, but is somewhat imprecise. The Rambam in Hilkhos Teshuva distinguishes among different types of heretics -- a min, an apikorus, a kofer, etc.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Many gedolim wrote ikrei emunah, and many disagreed with the Rambam. A selection:

1. God's corporeality.

We've already mentioned the Ravad's objection. Moshe ben Hasdai Taku, who was a ba'al hatosfot, believed that God could take physical form. The Shadal also defended the belief that God has a body.

2. God existed before everything else, and created the world ex nihilo.

The Ibn Ezra and Ralbag both believed that God sculpted the world out of eternal matter (a view which also better comports with current scientific theory, but that's another topic).

3. Only God should be the subject of worship and prayer. One should not pray to intermediaries, but should appeal directly to God.

Many selichot, as well as shalom aliechem (in particular barchuni leshalom) are directed to angels. See also Otzar HaGeonim, Shabbat 4-6 for a Geonic opinion defending turning to angels to ask them to intercede with God. Also see various midrashim in which people pray to avot or tazdikim and ask them to intercede with God, most famously, Calev, who prays in Chevron to the avot, asking them to interced with Hashem and protect him from the plot of the meraglim. Yakov Emden also defends the practice, and the Ran says that there is one specific angel you can pray to.

4. Moshe as the greatest prophet ever.

Ramban and Ralbag hold that the Mashiach will have more knowledge of Hashem then Moshe. The Ba'al Hatanya, r' Shneur Zalman, held that the Ari Hakadosh had better nevuah than Moshe.

5. Torah is from heaven, and the text of the torah we have is the the text of the torah tha Moshe got at Sinai.

Depends on how exactly you understand this. Ibn Ezra held that it is not the same text, b/c Yehoshua wrote the last 12 pesukim. Other opinions in the gemara hld that he wrote the last 8 pesukim. Midrash Tanchuma tells us about tikkueni sofrim, so at least at some historical point the anshei knesset hagedola did not believe this ikar. The Rashba talks about whether we should chance our Torah so that it would be the same as the Talmud's torah, which is a bit different. In addition, Aryeh Loeb Guenberg held that the commandment to write a torah doesn't apply today b/c of our doubts as to how certain words should be written. Moshe Sofer hled that you shouldn't say a bracha on writing the torah b/c it's possible that our version is incorrect, and it would be a bracha levatala.

I'll stop here - if you're interested in more, read Marc Shapiro's book, from which I took much of the above.

What's certain is this: IP's fantasy that everyone accepts all of the Rambam's principles entirely is just that: fantasy. The Rambam himself didn't advocate treating the Karaites like Apikorsim, even though they clearly did not beleive in all the Ikrei emunah.
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#85 lambda

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Posted 14 June 2005 - 09:25 PM

4. Moshe as the greatest prophet ever.

Ramban and Ralbag hold that the Mashiach will have more knowledge of Hashem then Moshe.


Why does this mean that they think that Moshiach is a greater novi than Moshe?

The Ba'al Hatanya, r' Shneur Zalman, held that the Ari Hakadosh had better nevuah than Moshe.


No he didn't. In the 19th letter of Iggeres HaKodesh, the Ba'al HaTanya quotes the Arizal in Likutei Torah that says that the perception of Moshe was only as far as a particular spiritual level. The Ba'al HaTanya asks the obvious question -- how could the Arizal and others speak of levels above this if Moshe didn't perceive it? He quotes Bava Basra 12b, which says that a talmid chochom is superior than a prophet, and explains the different between nevuah and the knowledge of the mekubalim. Nowhere does he say that the Arizal was a navi or had better nevuah than Moshe. If Marc Shapiro understands the Ba'al HaTanya that way, then I am not sure I want to read any more "scholarship" like that.

#86 TipuseiHarim

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Posted 15 June 2005 - 02:45 AM

4. Moshe as the greatest prophet ever.

Ramban and Ralbag hold that the Mashiach will have more knowledge of Hashem then Moshe.


Why does this mean that they think that Moshiach is a greater novi than Moshe?

The Ba'al Hatanya, r' Shneur Zalman, held that the Ari Hakadosh had better nevuah than Moshe.


No he didn't. In the 19th letter of Iggeres HaKodesh, the Ba'al HaTanya quotes the Arizal in Likutei Torah that says that the perception of Moshe was only as far as a particular spiritual level. The Ba'al HaTanya asks the obvious question -- how could the Arizal and others speak of levels above this if Moshe didn't perceive it? He quotes Bava Basra 12b, which says that a talmid chochom is superior than a prophet, and explains the different between nevuah and the knowledge of the mekubalim. Nowhere does he say that the Arizal was a navi or had better nevuah than Moshe. If Marc Shapiro understands the Ba'al HaTanya that way, then I am not sure I want to read any more "scholarship" like that.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


First off, I was not quiting precisely. I suggest you read Shapiro to evaluate his scholarship, rather than writing him off based on a post you read on the internet. His scholarship speaks for itself.

There may be some way to read the examples I quoted as not being in conflict with one particular interpretation of how to read the Rambam's ikkarim. However, it is impossible to take all the examples and conclude that, in fact, all of our revered gedolim believed in all of the Rambam's ikkarim in the same manner.

In other words, it may be possible to say that all the gedolim believed in the ikkarim, but differed over exactly what they meant (and those differences could be vast), but I'm not even certain that apporach works. I mean, the Ibn Ezra still believes that matter was eternal, and that's in direct opposition to the plain meaning of the Rambam. Simliar problems exist regarding the Torah that Moshe got being identical to the one we have - this is clearly untrue, and the Rambam KNEW it wasn't true, b/c he'd surely learned the portions of the gemara that say so.

One can understand the Ba'al Hatanya as you do, and to understand the Rambam as you do. But the only reason that you read them that way, rather than taking the position that the Ba'al HaTanya was cholek with the Rambam on this issue, is b/c of an a prior decision that everyone believes in the ikkarim. Given how controversial the Rambam was in his own time, particularly with regards to ikkarie emunah and the definition of what the Mesorah is, it's extremely difficult to believe that the Rambam's ikkarim were or are universal.
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#87 lambda

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Posted 15 June 2005 - 03:21 AM

One can understand the Ba'al Hatanya as you do, and to understand the Rambam as you do. But the only reason that you read them that way, rather than taking the position that the Ba'al HaTanya was cholek with the Rambam on this issue, is b/c of an a prior decision that everyone believes in the ikkarim.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


That is completely false. How would you even think that he is being cholek on the Rambam in the first place? Have you read what he says? He is explaining how the Arizal had comprehension of spiritual levels that Moshe did not. His explanation is based on the fact that the Arizal didn't receive his knowledge through nevuah, so how could he be cholek on the Rambam?

#88 stopwastingtimegolern

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Posted 15 June 2005 - 04:53 PM

[/quote]I can no longer entertain ideas about the nature of God that had been acceptable pre-Rambam.[/quote]

So why are you still entertaining the idea that “Halacha changes” after the Rambam made up a new idea that “this Torah does not change”?

#89 Yehudi

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Posted 15 June 2005 - 05:56 PM

Many gedolim wrote ikrei emunah, and many disagreed with the Rambam. A selection:

1. God's corporeality.

We've already mentioned the Ravad's objection. Moshe ben Hasdai Taku, who was a ba'al hatosfot, believed that God could take physical form. The Shadal also defended the belief that God has a body.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


I have noticed that most people who quote him actually do so to prove the opposite of what he actually says...see here: http://www.hashkafah...pic=7365&st=180 (and the following posts)

2. God existed before everything else, and created the world ex nihilo.

The Ibn Ezra and Ralbag both believed that God sculpted the world out of eternal matter (a view which also better comports with current scientific theory, but that's another topic).


You apparently have not seen the Ralbag inside...

....he holds the world was created in a manner between "yesh miyesh" and "yeash miayin" and for that matter he holds that "time" IS a creation...Now being that "time” and "space" go together if there was actual matter, time would not be a creation... IOW my point is that I don't think he holds it was actual physical matter rather something else which he calls "Geshem bilti shomer es temunuso" and goes on to explain that it is imposible to comprehend...[VKM]

As to the Ibn Ezra just because he says that the word "bora" does not show on creation "ex nihilo" does not mean that he holds the world was not created "ex nihilo" for all I know he holds like the Ramban [i.e. R’ avraham ibn chiya] that the pre existing matter was created ex nihilo and from that g-d created\formed the world…

IOW what made you decide that he holds the world was not created ex nihilo ?

Whatever the case is to say that:

“a view which also better comports with current scientific theory, but that's another topic”

means you either do not understand the Ralbag or you do not know what science claims…(I would say the former).

3. Only God should be the subject of worship and prayer. One should not pray to intermediaries, but should appeal directly to God.

Many selichot, as well as shalom aliechem (in particular barchuni leshalom) are directed to angels. See also Otzar HaGeonim, Shabbat 4-6 for a Geonic opinion defending turning to angels to ask them to intercede with God. Also see various midrashim in which people pray to avot or tazdikim and ask them to intercede with God, most famously, Calev, who prays in Chevron to the avot, asking them to interced with Hashem and protect him from the plot of the meraglim. Yakov Emden also defends the practice, and the Ran says that there is one specific angel you can pray to.


This has been discussed numerous times on this board [do a search], but it will suffice to say that those who do so hold that it is not against the 13 ikrim and that there is a difference VKM

4. Moshe as the greatest prophet ever.

Ramban and Ralbag hold that the Mashiach will have more knowledge of Hashem then Moshe. The Ba'al Hatanya, r' Shneur Zalman, held that the Ari Hakadosh had better nevuah than Moshe.


As pointed out this is simply not true [if you would have seen what the baal hatanya actually writes you would see that he writes EXPLICTLY the opposite].

5. Torah is from heaven, and the text of the torah we have is the the text of the torah tha Moshe got at Sinai.

Depends on how exactly you understand this. Ibn Ezra held that it is not the same text, b/c Yehoshua wrote the last 12 pesukim. Other opinions in the gemara hld that he wrote the last 8 pesukim. Midrash Tanchuma tells us about tikkueni sofrim, so at least at some historical point the anshei knesset hagedola did not believe this ikar.


You might want to read the 8th ikkur a few more times [in its ENTRETY]

The Rashba talks about whether we should chance our Torah so that it would be the same as the Talmud's torah, which is a bit different.


You obviously did not see the Rashba inside so I will leave it alone…

In addition, Aryeh Loeb Guenberg held that the commandment to write a torah doesn't apply today b/c of our doubts as to how certain words should be written. Moshe Sofer hled that you shouldn't say a bracha on writing the torah b/c it's possible that our version is incorrect, and it would be a bracha levatala.


If you can’t even put a simple “rabbi” in front of their names then there is nothing to discuss!

I'll stop here - if you're interested in more, read Marc Shapiro's book, from which I took much of the above.

What's certain is this: IP's fantasy that everyone accepts all of the Rambam's principles entirely is just that: fantasy.


Let me just quote what the Rambam writes in the end of his 13 ikrim that you should go over what he writes mant times and if someone thinks\says that even after ten times he understood what he wrote…

The Rambam himself didn't advocate treating the Karaites like Apikorsim, even though they clearly did not beleive in all the Ikrei emunah.


really ???

ps. I would have gone in to some of the answeres more at legnth -and not just say you obviosly did not see this or that- but it is hard to discuss something with someone when you know that the other person is just quoting without actually knowing what those that he is quoting say!!!
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#90 Interested Party

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Posted 16 June 2005 - 10:26 AM

Yehudi has already done a good job of replying to much here, but let me add a few thoughts:

1. I did not say that every one of the ikkarei emunah was universally held (although most are). What I did say is that the consensus among the poskim and gedolei yisroel is that they are true. There may be a daas yachid here and there, but, as in any other area of halakha this should not be relied upon.

2. The problem in relying on scholarly treatment is that they treat anyone who was Jewish as part of the masorah. IIRC, it is the Ramban who points out that to have a valid opinion on these issues, one must be familiar with the corpus of masorah in the Torah she be al Peh before one's opinion can be accepted as masoras Yisroel. The Rambam, Raavad and Ramban clearly qualify; the Ibn Ezra and Ralbag do not. (I know some are going to be set off by this, but no matter the value of their contribution to Biblical scholarship and parshanut, they are not baalei masorah.) When one eliminates these views, the number of those who are truly cholek on the Rambam dwindles even more.

3. Let us take a simple halakha in the Rambam, in Hilkohos Teshuva, I believe it is Perek 4 Halakha 1, but I may be off. If someone believes in more than one God, or denies the existence of God, or accepts that God exists but claims that he is not involved in running the world (i.e. a Deist) then he is a Min. Apart from losing his olam ha ba, that person's shechita is neveila min ha Torah, since these views are akin to Avoda Zara.*

Is anyone who is part of the masora choleik in this Rambam? I know of no one who is. I think it may be fairly said that belief in one God who is involved in running the world is universally held to be obligatory, and one who denies that in some way is a heretic, or, as the beginning of this thread would have it, an apikorus.


______________________
* There is a machlokes between the Rambam and the Rosh as to whether the shechita of a goy who does not worship AZ is neveila min ha Torah or miderabanan. Acc. to the Rosh, the pesul is that the goy is not obligated in shechita, and so his shechita is invalid. That view is not relevant to this thread. The Rambam's view is that min ha Torah being an idolater is what makes one's shechita neveila; it is the rabbanan who made a gedder as to all goyim.

#91 Yehudi

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Posted 16 June 2005 - 08:49 PM

2.  The problem in relying on scholarly treatment is that they treat anyone who was Jewish as part of the masorah.  IIRC, it is the Ramban who points out that to have a valid opinion on these issues, one must be familiar with the corpus of masorah in the Torah she be al Peh before one's opinion can be accepted as masoras Yisroel.  The Rambam, Raavad and Ramban clearly qualify; the Ibn Ezra and Ralbag do not.  (I know some are going to be set off by this, but no matter the value of their contribution to Biblical scholarship and parshanut, they are not baalei masorah.)  When one eliminates these views, the number of those who are truly cholek on the Rambam dwindles even more.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


The Ibn Ezra and the Ralbag were not familiar with the "corpus of mesorah in Torah she bal peh" ?

3.  Let us take a simple halakha in the Rambam, in Hilkohos Teshuva, I believe it is Perek 4 Halakha 1, but I may be off.  If someone believes in more than one God, or denies the existence of God, or accepts that God exists but claims that he is not involved in running the world (i.e. a Deist) then he is a Min.  Apart from losing his olam ha ba, that person's shechita is neveila min ha Torah, since these views are akin to Avoda Zara.*

Is anyone who is part of the masora choleik in this Rambam?  I know of no one who is.  I think it may be fairly said that belief in one God who is involved in running the world is universally held to be obligatory, and one who denies that in some way is a heretic, or, as the beginning of this thread would have it, an apikorus.


And your point with this is....?
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#92 Interested Party

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Posted 17 June 2005 - 09:48 AM

2.  The problem in relying on scholarly treatment is that they treat anyone who was Jewish as part of the masorah.  IIRC, it is the Ramban who points out that to have a valid opinion on these issues, one must be familiar with the corpus of masorah in the Torah she be al Peh before one's opinion can be accepted as masoras Yisroel.  The Rambam, Raavad and Ramban clearly qualify; the Ibn Ezra and Ralbag do not.  (I know some are going to be set off by this, but no matter the value of their contribution to Biblical scholarship and parshanut, they are not baalei masorah.)  When one eliminates these views, the number of those who are truly cholek on the Rambam dwindles even more.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


The Ibn Ezra and the Ralbag were not familiar with the "corpus of mesorah in Torah she bal peh" ?

3.  Let us take a simple halakha in the Rambam, in Hilkohos Teshuva, I believe it is Perek 4 Halakha 1, but I may be off.  If someone believes in more than one God, or denies the existence of God, or accepts that God exists but claims that he is not involved in running the world (i.e. a Deist) then he is a Min.  Apart from losing his olam ha ba, that person's shechita is neveila min ha Torah, since these views are akin to Avoda Zara.*

Is anyone who is part of the masora choleik in this Rambam?  I know of no one who is.  I think it may be fairly said that belief in one God who is involved in running the world is universally held to be obligatory, and one who denies that in some way is a heretic, or, as the beginning of this thread would have it, an apikorus.


And your point with this is....?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


1. No, they weren't.

2. There at least some things which are universally held to be obligatory beliefs. You can easily expand this list to cover most of the Rambam's 13.

#93 Yehudi

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Posted 17 June 2005 - 10:42 AM

The Ibn Ezra and the Ralbag were not familiar with the "corpus of mesorah in Torah she bal peh" ?

1. No, they weren't.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


:blink:

And you know this from.....!?

(I originally wrote more but I decided to exercise self restraint [that is, at least until you have a chance to reply])

2.  There at least some things which are universally held to be obligatory beliefs.  You can easily expand this list to cover most of the Rambam's 13.


OK.
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#94 TipuseiHarim

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Posted 17 June 2005 - 12:14 PM

One can understand the Ba'al Hatanya as you do, and to understand the Rambam as you do. But the only reason that you read them that way, rather than taking the position that the Ba'al HaTanya was cholek with the Rambam on this issue, is b/c of an a prior decision that everyone believes in the ikkarim.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


That is completely false. How would you even think that he is being cholek on the Rambam in the first place? Have you read what he says? He is explaining how the Arizal had comprehension of spiritual levels that Moshe did not. His explanation is based on the fact that the Arizal didn't receive his knowledge through nevuah, so how could he be cholek on the Rambam?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


It is reasonable to read the Rambam as saying that Moshe's level of knowledge of Hashem, regardless of source, is the highest level of knowledge of God that a human can attain. It's not the only way to read the Rambam, but it is certainly a way in which some mefarshim read him. According to this read, the Ba'al Hatanya is cholek on the Rambam, and seems to agree with the Ramban, who was also cholek on the Rambam on this point.

Like I said, it's not the only read, and you can be meyashev the Rambam and the Ba'al Hatanya. But in doing so, you're just going to wind up saying that other peopel, who understand the Rambam as I wrote above, are cholek on him. Regardless, like I said, the Ibn Ezra and Ralbag are certainly cholek on the rambam over the issue of eternal matter.
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#95 TipuseiHarim

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Posted 17 June 2005 - 12:22 PM

Many gedolim wrote ikrei emunah, and many disagreed with the Rambam. A selection:

1. God's corporeality.

We've already mentioned the Ravad's objection. Moshe ben Hasdai Taku, who was a ba'al hatosfot, believed that God could take physical form. The Shadal also defended the belief that God has a body.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


I have noticed that most people who quote him actually do so to prove the opposite of what he actually says...see here: http://www.hashkafah...pic=7365&st=180 (and the following posts)

2. God existed before everything else, and created the world ex nihilo.

The Ibn Ezra and Ralbag both believed that God sculpted the world out of eternal matter (a view which also better comports with current scientific theory, but that's another topic).


You apparently have not seen the Ralbag inside...

....he holds the world was created in a manner between "yesh miyesh" and "yeash miayin" and for that matter he holds that "time" IS a creation...Now being that "time” and "space" go together if there was actual matter, time would not be a creation... IOW my point is that I don't think he holds it was actual physical matter rather something else which he calls "Geshem bilti shomer es temunuso" and goes on to explain that it is imposible to comprehend...[VKM]

As to the Ibn Ezra just because he says that the word "bora" does not show on creation "ex nihilo" does not mean that he holds the world was not created "ex nihilo" for all I know he holds like the Ramban [i.e. R’ avraham ibn chiya] that the pre existing matter was created ex nihilo and from that g-d created\formed the world…

IOW what made you decide that he holds the world was not created ex nihilo ?

Whatever the case is to say that:

“a view which also better comports with current scientific theory, but that's another topic”

means you either do not understand the Ralbag or you do not know what science claims…(I would say the former).

3. Only God should be the subject of worship and prayer. One should not pray to intermediaries, but should appeal directly to God.

Many selichot, as well as shalom aliechem (in particular barchuni leshalom) are directed to angels. See also Otzar HaGeonim, Shabbat 4-6 for a Geonic opinion defending turning to angels to ask them to intercede with God. Also see various midrashim in which people pray to avot or tazdikim and ask them to intercede with God, most famously, Calev, who prays in Chevron to the avot, asking them to interced with Hashem and protect him from the plot of the meraglim. Yakov Emden also defends the practice, and the Ran says that there is one specific angel you can pray to.


This has been discussed numerous times on this board [do a search], but it will suffice to say that those who do so hold that it is not against the 13 ikrim and that there is a difference VKM

4. Moshe as the greatest prophet ever.

Ramban and Ralbag hold that the Mashiach will have more knowledge of Hashem then Moshe. The Ba'al Hatanya, r' Shneur Zalman, held that the Ari Hakadosh had better nevuah than Moshe.


As pointed out this is simply not true [if you would have seen what the baal hatanya actually writes you would see that he writes EXPLICTLY the opposite].

5. Torah is from heaven, and the text of the torah we have is the the text of the torah tha Moshe got at Sinai.

Depends on how exactly you understand this. Ibn Ezra held that it is not the same text, b/c Yehoshua wrote the last 12 pesukim. Other opinions in the gemara hld that he wrote the last 8 pesukim. Midrash Tanchuma tells us about tikkueni sofrim, so at least at some historical point the anshei knesset hagedola did not believe this ikar.


You might want to read the 8th ikkur a few more times [in its ENTRETY]

The Rashba talks about whether we should chance our Torah so that it would be the same as the Talmud's torah, which is a bit different.


You obviously did not see the Rashba inside so I will leave it alone…

In addition, Aryeh Loeb Guenberg held that the commandment to write a torah doesn't apply today b/c of our doubts as to how certain words should be written. Moshe Sofer hled that you shouldn't say a bracha on writing the torah b/c it's possible that our version is incorrect, and it would be a bracha levatala.


If you can’t even put a simple “rabbi” in front of their names then there is nothing to discuss!

I'll stop here - if you're interested in more, read Marc Shapiro's book, from which I took much of the above.

What's certain is this: IP's fantasy that everyone accepts all of the Rambam's principles entirely is just that: fantasy.


Let me just quote what the Rambam writes in the end of his 13 ikrim that you should go over what he writes mant times and if someone thinks\says that even after ten times he understood what he wrote…

The Rambam himself didn't advocate treating the Karaites like Apikorsim, even though they clearly did not beleive in all the Ikrei emunah.


really ???

ps. I would have gone in to some of the answeres more at legnth -and not just say you obviosly did not see this or that- but it is hard to discuss something with someone when you know that the other person is just quoting without actually knowing what those that he is quoting say!!!

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Like I said, you can engage in a process in which you attempt to resolve all of these contradictions, but the only reason you would force these often-difficult readings on the sources is if you already believe, a priori, that all of them believed the Rambam. There is no reason to believe this, either theologically or historically though.

Btw, I have read many, if not all of these sources inside, and in many cases have heard many shiurim from respected rabbanim on them. Apparently, you and I are capable of reading the same thing and coming to different conlcusions as to its meaning. If you wish, I can engage in a discussion in which I explain how I reach the conclusions I reach based upon the material inside. Let me know if you'd like to go down this path - but understand, I can't prove to you that I'm write, all I can do is explain to you how I've learned these sources.

Also, your point on my not using 'rabbi' before somebody's name is silly. Even the Gemara says 'Gadol Mi rabban shmo', which should be sufficient proof that leaving off the title is not necessarily a sign of disrespect, and I certainly did not intend it in that manner. This is an internet board - we type fast and don't always proof what we write. I hope that you will suspend making value judgments about me based upon spelling and diction.
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#96 Interested Party

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Posted 17 June 2005 - 12:32 PM

The Ibn Ezra and the Ralbag were not familiar with the "corpus of mesorah in Torah she bal peh" ?

1. No, they weren't.

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:blink:

And you know this from.....!?

(I originally wrote more but I decided to exercise self restraint [that is, at least until you have a chance to reply])

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First of all, I should have been clearer. "Familiar" is an understatement. I should have said thoroughly familiar, i.e. a boki.

I believe the Ramban himself says this about the Ibn Ezra. Neither the Ibn Ezra nor the Ralbag, though they were creative thinkers, were experts in the sea of Talmud and other writings of Chazal. How many teshuvos or chiddushim on Shas did either produced. So their hashkafas, while they may be interesting, are not necessarily masoras yisroel.

Bli neder I will try to find the Ramban.

#97 TipuseiHarim

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Posted 17 June 2005 - 12:54 PM

Yehudi has already done a good job of replying to much here, but let me add a few thoughts:

1.  I did not say that every one of the ikkarei emunah was universally held (although most are).  What I did say is that the consensus among the poskim and gedolei yisroel is that they are true.  There may be a daas yachid here and there, but, as in any other area of halakha this should not be relied upon.


What you said was that "Denial of any one of the ikkarei emunah" makes you a kofer. Now you're saying that people like Ibn Ezra, Ralbag, and so forth are a da'as yachid. So the question to you is are these people kofrim? If not, why do you consider them to be an acceptable da'as yachid?

2.  The problem in relying on scholarly treatment is that they treat anyone who was Jewish as part of the masorah.  IIRC, it is the Ramban who points out that to have a valid opinion on these issues, one must be familiar with the corpus of masorah in the Torah she be al Peh before one's opinion can be accepted as masoras Yisroel.  The Rambam, Raavad and Ramban clearly qualify; the Ibn Ezra and Ralbag do not.  (I know some are going to be set off by this, but no matter the value of their contribution to Biblical scholarship and parshanut, they are not baalei masorah.)  When one eliminates these views, the number of those who are truly cholek on the Rambam dwindles even more.


Maybe you are unfamiliar with Shapiro, who is a learned Orthodox Jew before he is a professor, and who speaks at yeshivot and communal learning centers around the country.

I also think that you're going to need to provide some evidence. What makes someone a ba'al hamasoret? Please lay out the qualifications. Right now, you're just reinterpreting your position in the face of any new challenge. If you could lay it out in its entirety, we could have a more honest and productive discussion over it. I, for one, am surprised that you could say that mefarshim who appear in nearly evey chumash that has more than rashi and Onkelos are not considered baalei masorah. I would also like to know what the halchic implications of your statement are, and who holds like this.

3.  Let us take a simple halakha in the Rambam, in Hilkohos Teshuva, I believe it is Perek 4 Halakha 1, but I may be off.  If someone believes in more than one God, or denies the existence of God, or accepts that God exists but claims that he is not involved in running the world (i.e. a Deist) then he is a Min.  Apart from losing his olam ha ba, that person's shechita is neveila min ha Torah, since these views are akin to Avoda Zara.*

Is anyone who is part of the masora choleik in this Rambam?  I know of no one who is.  I think it may be fairly said that belief in one God who is involved in running the world is universally held to be obligatory, and one who denies that in some way is a heretic, or, as the beginning of this thread would have it, an apikorus.

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Circular arguments much? Since you define anyone who is cholek on the Rambam's ikkarim as not a part of the Mesorah, obviously, nobody who you consider part of the Mesorah is cholek on the Rambam.
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#98 Interested Party

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Posted 17 June 2005 - 01:09 PM

Yehudi has already done a good job of replying to much here, but let me add a few thoughts:

1.  I did not say that every one of the ikkarei emunah was universally held (although most are).  What I did say is that the consensus among the poskim and gedolei yisroel is that they are true.  There may be a daas yachid here and there, but, as in any other area of halakha this should not be relied upon.


What you said was that "Denial of any one of the ikkarei emunah" makes you a kofer. Now you're saying that people like Ibn Ezra, Ralbag, and so forth are a da'as yachid. So the question to you is are these people kofrim? If not, why do you consider them to be an acceptable da'as yachid?

2.  The problem in relying on scholarly treatment is that they treat anyone who was Jewish as part of the masorah.  IIRC, it is the Ramban who points out that to have a valid opinion on these issues, one must be familiar with the corpus of masorah in the Torah she be al Peh before one's opinion can be accepted as masoras Yisroel.  The Rambam, Raavad and Ramban clearly qualify; the Ibn Ezra and Ralbag do not.  (I know some are going to be set off by this, but no matter the value of their contribution to Biblical scholarship and parshanut, they are not baalei masorah.)  When one eliminates these views, the number of those who are truly cholek on the Rambam dwindles even more.


Maybe you are unfamiliar with Shapiro, who is a learned Orthodox Jew before he is a professor, and who speaks at yeshivot and communal learning centers around the country.

I also think that you're going to need to provide some evidence. What makes someone a ba'al hamasoret? Please lay out the qualifications. Right now, you're just reinterpreting your position in the face of any new challenge. If you could lay it out in its entirety, we could have a more honest and productive discussion over it. I, for one, am surprised that you could say that mefarshim who appear in nearly evey chumash that has more than rashi and Onkelos are not considered baalei masorah. I would also like to know what the halchic implications of your statement are, and who holds like this.

3.  Let us take a simple halakha in the Rambam, in Hilkohos Teshuva, I believe it is Perek 4 Halakha 1, but I may be off.  If someone believes in more than one God, or denies the existence of God, or accepts that God exists but claims that he is not involved in running the world (i.e. a Deist) then he is a Min.  Apart from losing his olam ha ba, that person's shechita is neveila min ha Torah, since these views are akin to Avoda Zara.*

Is anyone who is part of the masora choleik in this Rambam?  I know of no one who is.  I think it may be fairly said that belief in one God who is involved in running the world is universally held to be obligatory, and one who denies that in some way is a heretic, or, as the beginning of this thread would have it, an apikorus.

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Circular arguments much? Since you define anyone who is cholek on the Rambam's ikkarim as not a part of the Mesorah, obviously, nobody who you consider part of the Mesorah is cholek on the Rambam.

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1. No, I said the Raavad was a daas yachid. The others are not masores yisroel.

2. I said I will look up the Ramban, which I do not have now. Basically, however, once must at the very least be a talmid chacham she higgiyah le horaah, which mean a thorough familiarity of Shas and Poskim, and, since we are discussing ikkarei emunah, the sources in Chazal. Since we are treading on such fundamental grounds, it probably means a great deal more learning than that.

Ibn Ezra and Ralbag do not qualify. I rather doubt Professor Shapiro does either, although he may well be an ehrliche yid.

The problem is that not anyone who was (or is) Jewish and who wrote something about hashkafa or Tanakh is necessarily part of masoras yisroel. They may have meaningful insights into Tanakh or philosophical issues, but their opinions do not necessarily have the automatic respect that a person who is a baal masorah has.

As I said, the Raavad does indeed qualify, it is quite clear that he had a thorough mastery of Shas and Poskim, so he is a legitimate, albeit minority view, about that one ikkar in emunah.

3. No, what I said was that denial of ikkarei emunah makes one a kofer (or, loosely, an apikorus). As you know, there is a dispute betweent the Raavad and the Rambam on one ikkar.

There is no circularity for the reasons explained.

Are you seriously suggesting that there is anyone who is part of masoras yisroel who holds that one is not a kofer if he denies that there is a God, that there is one and not more or less, and that He is involved in running the world? I would like to see such a source. If you cannot find one, then you have admitted that there is at least one (or three, depending how you count them, which is a technicality) ikkar in emunah.

You can probably say the same for most of the other 13 ikkarim, other than the one which is a machlokes between the Rambam and Raavad.

#99 shim

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Posted 17 June 2005 - 03:00 PM

It's all so logical.

#100 Yehudi

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Posted 17 June 2005 - 03:06 PM

Like I said, you can engage in a process in which you attempt to resolve all of these contradictions, but the only reason you would force these often-difficult readings on the sources is if you already believe, a priori, that all of them believed the Rambam. There is no reason to believe this, either theologically or historically though.

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Never said that, if you would read my posts from the begining of this thread you will see that I said the opposite...


Btw, I have read many, if not all of these sources inside, and in many cases have heard many shiurim from respected rabbanim on them. Apparently, you and I are capable of reading the same thing and coming to different conlcusions as to its meaning. If you wish, I can engage in a discussion in which I explain how I reach the conclusions I reach based upon the material inside. Let me know if you'd like to go down this path - but understand, I can't prove to you that I'm write, all I can do is explain to you how I've learned these sources.


You saw the Ralbag, Ibn Ezra, Tanya and Rashba etc. inside and Still came to those conclusions !? yes I would be intrested to go through it with you...


Also, your point on my not using 'rabbi' before somebody's name is silly. Even the Gemara says 'Gadol Mi rabban shmo', which should be sufficient proof that leaving off the title is not necessarily a sign of disrespect, and I certainly did not intend it in that manner. This is an internet board - we type fast and don't always proof what we write. I hope that you will suspend making value judgments about me based upon spelling and diction.


Let me make myself clear...

The Chasam Sofer is usually called just that, when he isn't he is at least called "Rabbi" the only ones who leave off the "Rabbi" and call him [well this has really nothing to do with him per say] by his name are those that think it is more "scholarly" to call people just by their names in order that everyone be equal [everyone meaning our talmidei chachomim together with (lehavdil) a non-jewish scholar etc.

As for the gemora you know as well as I do that that was not the case here, further more although the gemora says "gadol meraban shmai" most people even in the gemora are still called "Rabbi" [or its variation].

Let me put it this way, I think very few people will be convinced that some one nowadays called someone just his name out of deep respect...Vda"L

As for judging by spelling trust me I don't do that as I can hardly spell myself...
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