Skepticism, Belief, and the Modern: Maimonides to Nietzsche

Skepticism, Belief, and the Modern: Maimonides to Nietzsche

Skepticism, Belief, and the Modern: Maimonides to Nietzsche

Skepticism, Belief, and the Modern: Maimonides to Nietzsche

Synopsis

Drawing upon diverse disciplines--political theory, metaphysics, analytic philosophy, intellectual history, and Jewish studies--Aryeh Botwinick calls into question cherished boundaries of western thought, specifically those that isolate religion. In developing his argument, he applies deconstructionist approaches to such classic texts as Plato's REPUBLIC, Maimonides' GUIDE OF THE PERPLEXED, and Hobbes's LEVIATHAN.

Excerpt

In the story I have to tell, Plato theorizes the limitations of reason in such a way as to set the stage for the emergence of the monotheistic God who is conceived as being wholly other than man—totally dissimilar from the categories and vocabularies that we invoke to describe him. Moses Maimonides, the twelfth-century Jewish legalist and philosopher, in his Guide of the Perplexed reembeds the monotheistic God in a Platonic philosophical context, thereby exposing its conceptual and referential vacuousness. Thomas Hobbes in the seventeenth century appropriates Maimonides' theorizing of the monotheistic God (or independently arrives at an analogous position) for the purpose of affirming a completely secular, this-worldly universe, in which the pursuit of "felicity" and "commodious living," descriptively and normatively speaking, predominate. David Hume and Immanuel Kant in the eighteenth century seek in different ways to philosophically disenchant the centrality of skepticism, and Friedrich Nietzsche in the nineteenth century attempts to evolve a philosophical discourse situated beyond preoccupation with truth and therefore also beyond the spell of skepticism. in this book I argue that despite these valiant attempts either to resolve the problematic of skepticism or to move beyond it in recognizable or utterly transformed ways, a common set of dilemmas remains to haunt formulations of skepticism and antiskepticism in the course of their multiple metamorphoses throughout Western thought.

On a depth psychological level, the story I have to tell is about the pervasiveness of the search for "equivalences" in ancient and medi-

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.