Akedat Yitzchak

The Wisdom of Dreams

by R. Gidon Rothstein ‘Akedat Yitzhak, Sha’ar Twenty-Nine R. Arama dedicates this sha’ar to the insights given by the intellect or dreams on the one hand and prophecy on the other. Yosef tells Par’oh dream interpretation comes from Hashem, for R. Arama raising the question of how prophecy is any different. What light is shed by prophecy we cannot get ...

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Human Freewill and the Course of History

by R. Gidon Rothstein Akedat Yitzhak, Sha’ar Twenty-Eight The tension between freewill and Divine foreknowledge has a long history in Jewish thought. In this sha’ar, R. Arama takes a position on a detail of the issue, Hashem’s plan for history does not force people into particular actions (history accommodates many versions, leaving people with choice about almost all their actions). He ...

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Hashem’s Ethics Are Not Always Ours

by R. Gidon Rothstein Akedat Yitzhak, Sha’ar Twenty-Seven, Part 2 The Exceptionalism of Learning from Hashem Directly R. Arama returns to his original analogy of a human being as a tree. Trees root in the ground, and their branches extend from their trunks. Humans generally must rely on their intellects to understand the world around them, to evaluate their choices, ...

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Character Follows Faith

by R. Gidon Rothstein Akedat Yitzhak, Sha’ar Twenty-Seven People of Torah values build their faith foundation first, then construct the content of their character, R. Arama intends this sha’ar to explain, in contrats to philosophers, who allow their intellectual examination of issues to shape their pre-exidsting character [an idea and issue certainly acute in our times, when many people assume ...

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