The Self, the Other, and God in 20th Century Jewish Philosophy: <br>Cohen, Buber, and Levinas

The Self, the Other, and God in 20th Century Jewish Philosophy:
Cohen, Buber, and Levinas

Mar 8, 2021 By Yonatan Y. Brafman | Public Event video

her, and where does our relationship to the other Other—God—fit in? Modern Jewish philosophers, including Hermann Cohen, Martin Buber, and Emmanuel Levinas placed the intersubjective relationship—the relationship between persons–at the center of their thinking. Dr. Yonatan Brafman explores their reflections—their similarities and differences—in order to grapple with its implications for Jewish ethics.

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Mitzvot and the Path to Human Flourishing

Mitzvot and the Path to Human Flourishing

Dec 14, 2020 By Yonatan Y. Brafman | Public Event video

The medieval decisor and philosopher Moses Maimonides claimed that the mitzvot (commandments) are a divine law. By this, he meant not only that the mitzvot originate with God, but that they were a medium by which people could flourish both politically and personally—which for Maimonides meant the attainment of intellectual comprehension. This session explores the significance of Maimonides’ view and how two modern Jewish thinkers, Mordecai Kaplan and Eliezer Berkovits, built on Maimonides’ ideas to develop their own understandings of how observance of the mitzvot can advance human growth and the attainment of perfection.  

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The Spirit and the Letter

The Spirit and the Letter

Feb 5, 2016 By Yonatan Y. Brafman | Commentary | Mishpatim

After the heights of the revelation at Sinai, Parashat Mishpatim settles down to more mundane topics, including a lengthy discussion of torts. Perhaps motivated by this sudden change of altitude, Nahmanides interprets these details as expansions on the Ten Commandments, such as the prohibitions on coveting and theft: “For if a man does not know the laws of the house and field or other possessions, he might think that they belong to him and thus covet them and take them for himself”.

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