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On Providence And Prophecy

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Chapter Summary

At the closure of Halakhic Man, Rabbi Joseph Baer Soloveitchik deals with providence and prophecy. This chapter shows that Halakhic Man creates his personality, including his prophetic dimension, by developing a priori halakhic cognition. R. Soloveitchik chooses to present Maimonides's view of providence as a solution to the problem of individual immortality. The gist of Maimonides's view is that man occupies a unique position in the kingdom of existence and differs in his ontological nature from all other creatures. R.Soloveitchik's discussions of prophecy in connection with Halakhic Man renounce a priori the prophet's social-political function, which had played an important role in the work of thinkers such as Maimonides. The quasi-medieval theory, with which R. Soloveitchik opens and closes the discussion about the peak of personal creativity, is the framework and the key for understanding halakhic creativity. Idealist-epistemic philosophy is the instrument for understanding Halakhic Man's epistemic and moral personality.

Keywords: Halakhic Man; Maimonides's view; personal creativity; prophecy; providence; Rabbi Joseph Baer Soloveitchik



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