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Moses Maimonides  1135 - 1204

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The Guide of the Perplexed by Moses Maimonides, Leo Strauss (Illustrator), Shlomo Pines (Translator)
Maimonides, Physician and Medical Scholar

Moses Ben Maimon, whom we know today as Maimonides or Rambam, was born in 1135 in Cordoba, Spain to a scholarly family. His father, a physician, Rabbi, and judge, saw to it that his precocious son was thoroughly educated and conversant in both Hebrew and Arabic. While Maimonides was still young his family moved several times, fleeing first to Morocco to escape religious persecution and then to Palestine. They finally settled in Cairo, Egypt which welcomed religious refugees. This was to be Maimonides' home for the remainder of his life. His varied background significantly contributed to his expertise in three separate fields for which he enjoyed prominence: medicine, religion, and philosophy. Not only did Maimonides lend breadth and depth to the existing knowledge of each of these disciplines, but it was his particular genius to synthesize all three...


Moses Maimonides


Moses Maimonides (1135-1204). The foremost intellectual figure of medieval Judaism, Maimonides was a prolific writer whose ideas about philosophy, religion, and medicine had vast influence. He is best known for three works: his commentary on the Mishna, his code of Jewish law, and his 'Guide of the Perplexed'.

Moses Maimonides was born Moses ben Maimon in Cordoba, Spain, on March 30, 1135, to an educated, distinguished family. In 1159 the family left Spain for Fez, Morocco, because of the persecution of the Jews of Cordoba at the hands of a fanatical Islamic sect. In Fez, Maimonides began his study of medicine, but again his family fled persecution and moved to Palestine. They finally settled in the 1160s in Fostat, Egypt, near Cairo. Here they were free to practice Judaism. Soon after their arrival Maimonides' father and brother died, and Maimonides began to practice medicine to support his family. His fame as a physician spread, and he soon became the court physician for Sultan Saladin and his family. Maimonides also lectured at the local hospital, maintained a private practice, and was a leader in the Jewish community...


Morality and the Law in Moses Maimonides

Essay by Daniel H. Shulman

Scholarly paper on morality and the law in the philosophy and theology of Moses Maimonides.


...Despite the rejection of a natural law theory, it would be incorrect to say that reason were absent from Jewish philosophy. Maimonides, like most theologians of his day, inherited the Aristotelian tradition. Wedded as he was to the philosophical tradition, Maimonides could not have taken up any philosophical issue without first determining whether it were within man's power to grasp the issue, and if so, applying reason to its fullest extent.  The application of reason, in turn, requires that a proposition be accepted if it can be demonstrated, and that propositions can be demonstrated based upon principles of Logic, Mathematics and Physics...


The Thirteen Principles and the Resurrection of the Dead

Maimonides, in his commentary on the Mishnah, compiles what he refers to as the Shloshah-Asar Ikkarim, the Thirteen Articles of Faith, compiled from Judaism's 613 commandments found in the Torah.


Moses Maimonides (Short) Biography


(1135 Cordoba, Spain- 1204 Fustat, Egypt). Jewish philosopher and physician. Maimonides was also known as Rabbi Moses ben Maimon, or Rambam. With worsened living conditions for Jews, after the Almohads captured Cordoba in 1148, the family of Maimonides emigrated, and eventually they settled in Egypt. Maimonides worked as chief rabbi in Cairo, and as physician for Saladin.


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