Commentaries on the Exhibit’s Works




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A brief commentary prepared by Patrick Thomas, PhD, Assistant Professor, English, on the following work:

Moses Maimonides
Moreh Nebukhim (The Guide of the Perplexed)
Possibly Rome, ca. 1469; first edition; translated from Judeo-Arabic into Hebrew by Samuel Ibn Tibbon


A seemingly constant question in our search for knowledge is, “What is the relationship between faith and reason?” Maimonides, a physician and one of the greatest rabbinic scholars of the medieval era, explores the intersection of faith and reason in The Guide of the Perplexed. Written as a three-volume series as letters to his student, Maimonides provides guiding precepts on the nature of God, the physical universe, and the reconciling of Aristotelian philosophy with the religious teachings of the Torah.

With his emphasis on building faith through reason, Maimonides’s Guide was highly influential, not only for Jewish scholars, but also for Christian and Muslim religious philosophers, most notably Thomas Aquinas.

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Jennifer Speed of the College of Arts and Sciences discusses Moses Maimonides’s exploration of the intersections of faith and reason in medieval Jewish thought; she also reflects on the impact of Maimonides’s work on theological and philosophical thinking in Christian and Islamic traditions.

Maimonides: ‘The Guide of the Perplexed’


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