AJS Review (The Journal of the Association for Jewish by Norman A. editor Stillman

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By Norman A. editor Stillman

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Extra resources for AJS Review (The Journal of the Association for Jewish Studies), Vol 19 No. 2 1994

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See, for example, Treatise on Logic, and his Commentary to the Mishnah, particularly his introductions to Seder Zera'im, Avot (Eight Chapters), and Sanhedrin 10 (Pereq Heleq). 172 HOWARD KREISEL philosophersin formulatinghis approachto particularissues, not always himself to a specific view. 9 In general, Maimonidesprovides a basic frameworkfor a solution to the issues with which he deals, perhapssensing many of the problems which remain whose details he had not fully workedout. The Guide should be viewed as the productof an authorin the processof thinkingand rethinkingsome of the importantissues he discusses, even while writinghis work.

On Babylonian Jewish society, see Jacob Neusner, A History of the Jews in Babylonia, 5 vols. (Leiden:Brill, 1965-70); I. Gafni, Ye/hudeBavel bi-Tequfatha-Talmud(Jerusalem:Zalman ShazarCenter,1990). 143. " ANDMAGIC RITUALAND PURITYIN EARLYJEWISHMYSTICISM 167 Magiciansand Monks To attainthis success, the magicianmust sequesterhimselffromsociety andespeciallytheoppositesex. The humancreatureis a son of a stinkingdrop,bornin impurity, who eats and excretes-in other words,a physicallyobnoxiousbeing who has no right to keep companywith the angels.

DEl IN MAIMONIDES' GUIDE OF THE PERPLEXED IMITATIO 173 Maimonidesintroducescertaininconsistencieson purpose,at times he only realizesin the courseof writinghis workthattherearecertaininconsistencies between some of his views and he seeks to offer a solution;still at other times certaininconsistenciesappearto escape his notice altogether,or he is not convincedof the finalanswer. "Clearlyany attempt develop conceptionof humanperfection and inzitatioDei drawingupon the Greekand Islamicphilosophicalsources had to address a range of questions concerningGod and the essence of the humansoul, questionson which these sources were hardlyunanimous or unequivocalin their answers.

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