Philosopher, physician, and master of rabbinical literature, Moses ben Maimon (1135-1204) strove to reconcile biblical revelation with medieval Aristotelianism. His writings, especially the celebrated Guide for the Perplexed,
exercised considerable influence on both Jewish and Christian scholasticism and brought him lasting renown as one of the greatest medieval thinkers.
This volume contains his most significant ethical works, newly translated from the original sources by Professors Raymond L. Weiss and Charles E. Butterworth, well-known Maimonides scholars. Previous translations have often been inadequate — either because they were not based on the best possible texts or from a lack of precision. That deficiency has been remedied in this text; the translations are based on the latest scholarship and have been made with a view toward maximum accuracy and readability. Moreover, the long "Letter to Joseph" has been translated into English for the first time.
This edition includes the following selections:
I. Laws Concerning Character Traits (complete)
II. Eight Chapters (complete)
III. On the Management of Health
IV. Letter to Joseph
V. Guide of the Perplexed
VII. The Days of the Messiah
Taken as a whole, this collection presents a comprehensive and revealing overview of Maimonides' thought regarding the relationship of revelation and reason in the sphere of ethics. Here are his teachings concerning "natural law," secular versus religious authority, the goals of moral conduct, diseases of the soul, the application of logic to ethical matters, and the messianic era. Throughout, the great sage is concerned to reconcile the apparent divergence between biblical teachings and Greek philosophy.
Reprint of the New York University Press, 1983 edition.
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