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Myth As Metaphor: Halakhic Man As A Creator Of Worlds

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Chapter Summary

Halakhic Man focuses on the question of whether the intra-cognitive hiddush reaches extracognitive expression and, if so, what does Halakhic Man create in the concrete-qualitative world? Ostensibly, Rabbi Joseph Baer Soloveitchik answers the first question affirmatively. In other words: creativity is both epistemic-objective and sensorial-qualitative. The creativity of scholarly cognition is reflected in the hiddush, a term used to describe innovative halakhic interpretations. R. Soloveitchik addresses the pure will and the creativity of Halakhic Man or, more precisely, the realms of ethics and aesthetics, and indeed leaves room for extra-cognitive activity. He addresses two areas in Halakhic Man, pure thought and pure will, adopting in both Hermann Cohen's solution for Kant's basic duality. R. Soloveitchik's new interpretation of the messianic idea as the purpose of is unfolded in this chapter. According to R. Soloveitchik, creativity and striving for creativity are features that characterize human existence.

Keywords: halakhic hiddush; Halakhic Man; messianic idea; Rabbi Joseph Baer Soloveitchik

10.1163/ej.9789004157668.i-376.81
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