We owe it especially to our scholars and theologians, who endeavor to teach us what is the truth according to the best of their ability. Maimonides reflects:. When I have a difficult subject before me — when I find the road narrow, and can see no other way of teaching a well established truth except by pleasing one intelligent man and displeasing ten thousand fools — I prefer to address myself to the one man, and to take no notice whatever of the condemnation of the multitude; I prefer to extricate that intelligent man from his embarrassment and show him the cause of his perplexity, so that he may attain perfection and be at peace.
The Guide for the Perplexed goes on to explore the path to truth, reaching which Maimonides argues is essential for attaining such peace from perplexity.
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Complement this particular portion with physicist Lisa Randall on the different paths art, science, and religion take to meaning and Hannah Arendt on the crucial distinction between truth and meaning. Brain Pickings participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn commissions by linking to Amazon.
Truth: A Guide for the Perplexed
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Maimonides (Rambam) and His Texts
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Premium Articles. Gadamer: A Guide for the Perplexed is the ideal text for anyone trying to get to grips with Gadamer's work. Providing a clear account of the central tenets of Gadamer's philosophy, the book does not shy away from the more complex material and provides an invaluably thorough and fully engaged account of Gadamer's hermeneutics.
There is clear exposition and analysis of such key terms - often problematic for the reader - as 'fusion of horizons', 'effective historical consciousness' and 'the logic of question and answer', as well as Gadamer's redefinition of such concepts as 'prejudice', 'authority' and 'tradition'. The book also discusses Gadamer's influence in other areas of philosophy; the response of other philosophers to his work; and criticisms of his work on the grounds of relativism. It admirably fulfils the task of Continuum's series, Guides for the Perplexed, of offering 'clear, concise and accessible introductions to thinkers, writers and subjects that students and readers can find especially challenging - or, indeed, downright bewildering', but it is much more than that It is amazing that Lawn, who apparently never met Gadamer, has such as acute understanding of the man and his thought - something that Gadamer himself, who really disliked the biographical approach, would have very much appreciated.
In fact, one of the qualities of the book is that it is truly hermeneutical and indeed Gadamerian, oriented, as such a book should be, towards understanding.
Perhaps Lawn's combination of sympathy and distance was ideal for this task.