Third Day of Passover – Foods Rich in History, Tradition, and Symbolism

Day Three

Today is the Third Day of Passover and thought this would be a good time to discuss some of the Jewish Traditions and Laws of Passover. Before I get onto this, I want to remind you that it was only after God inflicted Egypt with the Tenth and final plague that the Pharoah set the Israelites free. It is this Exodus that led to this celebration of freedom. Passover is referred to as the Feast of Unleavened Bread in the Torah. Removing leavened bread from Jewish homes during Passover is known as the chametz, and all grains both dry and wet are removed, so what do the Jews eat? Well, let’s look at some of the traditional Jewish meals.

Seder Plate

The Passover Seder

On the first night of Passover, the 15 step Seder (order) is overserved.  The components of the Seder Plate:

  1. Matzah – Unleavened bread.
  2. Beitzah – Roasted egg a symbol of spring and the festival sacrifice.
  3. Chazeret – Often Romaine lettuce, symbolizing the harshness of slavery.
  4. Zeroah – The shank bone represents the Paschal lamb sacrificed in Biblical times.
  5. Charoset – Apples, spices and nuts ground in wine symbolize the mortar used by Hebrew slaves.
  6. Karpas – Parsley which is dipped in salt water symbolizes the tears of Jews during Egyptian slavery.
  7. Maror – Bitter Herbs such as horseradish symbolize the bitterness of slavery.
  8. Salt Water.

The Matzah Ball Soup

Kneidlach, another word for Matzah Ball is often served up in Chicken soup.  The Matzah Ball is made with rendered chicken fat, eggs, chicken broth, salt, pepper, ginger nutmeg and matzo meal.  There are many recipes choose from here, here and here.

Traditional Passover Foods

Potato Kugel

Gefilt Fish

Braised Brisket (not roasted)

Coconut Macaroons

and many more…

An Opportunity for Christians

Passover offers Christians a wonderful opportunity to learn so much from our Jewish friends.  From foods rich in tradition, to their linkage with story’s we know from the Old and New Testaments.  I’ll say it again because it bears repeating; “if we don’t know our rich history that is linked at the hip with Judiasm, then understanding Gospel of Jesus Christ becomes impossible to know in fulness.”

Third Traditional Scripture Reading of Passover

Exodus 13:1-16 – King James Version

13 And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,

Sanctify unto me all the firstborn, whatsoever openeth the womb among the children of Israel, both of man and of beast: it is mine.

And Moses said unto the people, Remember this day, in which ye came out from Egypt, out of the house of bondage; for by strength of hand the Lord brought you out from this place: there shall no leavened bread be eaten.

This day came ye out in the month Abib.

And it shall be when the Lord shall bring thee into the land of the Canaanites, and the Hittites, and the Amorites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites, which he sware unto thy fathers to give thee, a land flowing with milk and honey, that thou shalt keep this service in this month.

Seven days thou shalt eat unleavened bread, and in the seventh day shall be a feast to the Lord.

Unleavened bread shall be eaten seven days; and there shall no leavened bread be seen with thee, neither shall there be leaven seen with thee in all thy quarters.

And thou shalt shew thy son in that day, saying, This is done because of that which the Lord did unto me when I came forth out of Egypt.

And it shall be for a sign unto thee upon thine hand, and for a memorial between thine eyes, that the Lord’s law may be in thy mouth: for with a strong hand hath the Lord brought thee out of Egypt.

10 Thou shalt therefore keep this ordinance in his season from year to year.

11 And it shall be when the Lord shall bring thee into the land of the Canaanites, as he sware unto thee and to thy fathers, and shall give it thee,

12 That thou shalt set apart unto the Lord all that openeth the matrix, and every firstling that cometh of a beast which thou hast; the males shall be the Lord’s.

13 And every firstling of an ass thou shalt redeem with a lamb; and if thou wilt not redeem it, then thou shalt break his neck: and all the firstborn of man among thy children shalt thou redeem.

14 And it shall be when thy son asketh thee in time to come, saying, What is this? that thou shalt say unto him, By strength of hand the Lord brought us out from Egypt, from the house of bondage:

15 And it came to pass, when Pharaoh would hardly let us go, that the Lord slew all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both the firstborn of man, and the firstborn of beast: therefore I sacrifice to the Lord all that openeth the matrix, being males; but all the firstborn of my children I redeem.

16 And it shall be for a token upon thine hand, and for frontlets between thine eyes: for by strength of hand the Lord brought us forth out of Egypt.

2 thoughts on “Third Day of Passover – Foods Rich in History, Tradition, and Symbolism

  1. The morning of the 4th day of the Pesach, we Jews stand on the 3rd day of the Omer count.   The Omer count teaches a נמשל mussar whereby Jews count the day cleansed of avoda zara.   The count distance from biur chametz and the night of the Sedar Pesach where we Jews acknowledge that HaShem alone brought Israel out of Egypt.    The משל of biur chametz sanctifies as קודש.   Which means exactly what?  That Jews commit to remove and distance themselves from chametz, similar to a nazir who likewise does so with grapes, what Jews do with chametz the entire chag of Pesach.    The נמשל of biur chametz, Jews search their houses and property to remove any and all foreign Gods.    Something as did Israel before  the revelation of the Torah at Sinai; comparable to La’van searching the tents of Yaacov looking for his God.  Bottom line, the Haggadah teaches faith in the justice of HaShem which ipso facto rejects prayer offered to both idols or other Gods.    The 11th middle Blessing of the Shemone Esri,

    ולירושלים עירך ברחמים תשוב, ותשכן בתוכה כאשר דברת וכו’ וכסא דוד מהרה לתוכה תכין…
    Its central k’vanna makes discernment between oath brit sworn to HaShem from the worship of foreign imposter Gods/chametz.    The revelation of the Torah at Sinai excludes all other Gods.  Both rational or mystic belief based theologies, mussar mitzvot exclude from the inheritance of the brit Cohen nation.  Rational or mystic theology compares to avoda zara which once worshipped the stars in the Heavens as Gods; the latter – an inheritance given to all Mankind.    Only Israel accepted the Torah revelation of HaShem at Sinai.  Mussar commands middot, tohor middot.  

    Ingestion of tohor middot causes the emotional irrational mind to mature due to developing wisdom, consequent to acquired life experience; lessons learned over and over again and again, until that novice becomes a master.    Enslaved Israel had to learn how to make and work with bricks.  Wisdom enlightenment, attained through labor with bricks, likewise produced two great “tuma” Temples: courtroom righteous justice has priority over korbanot.    The logic skill that applies knowledge of bricks and their purposes, equally applies to many other subjects and walks of life.  On this basis stands all Common Law courtrooms of justice.  

    Rule #1 of the Torah faith:  Erect the Torah world – – through validation of established precedents.    A novice that reads T’NaCH and Talmud, basically limited his understanding to what his eyes immediately read from those books.    The style of the Baali-Tosafot – they brought precedents from other places within the Sha’s Talmud; their T’NaCH and Talmudic commentaries learn by way of bringing comparative precedents, comparative case/law, from other places within the Sha’s Talmud.    A novice can not duplicate the sh’itta of learning done by the Baali Tosafot; a commentary which consistently follows the sh’itta of learning through precedents; expressed throughout the Baali Tosafot’s commentary upon the Sha’s Bavli.

    The קודש of the Haggadah: it separates tefilla from prayer.    Both the worshipers of idols and the disciples of the Scientific method limit the reality of their Gods to 3 physical dimensions.    On par with the Ancient Greeks as expressed through the flaw of Euclid’s 5th axiom of geometry, or the absolute necessity required by all branches of Xtian theology, which demands that a physical Jesus once lived as a man within the lands of Judea over 2000 years ago.    Neither the idea of a myth or an imaginary Jesus can Church theology ever accept.  Therefore persons who pray, they – by definition – worship other Gods.  Why?    Because persons who pray have long ago embraced Goyim customs, cultures, practices and behaviors – all Goyim refused to accept the revelation of the Torah at Sinai; assimilated Jewry have likewise abandoned and rejected the cultures and customs practiced by the Cohed nation.  

    The רשע who asks one of the 4 questions, he excludes himself not only from the liberation from Egyptian g’lut, but even worse he excludes himself from the eternal Cohen inheritance of the Jewish people.    G’lut comes when the Cohen nation abandons tohor practices and assimilates unto foreign alien cultures and customs.    Year by year Yidden repeats the salvation from Egyptian bondage.    Slowly the dawn breaks and Yidden perceive much more than the טפש פשט of remembering the suffering and salvation from the bondage of Egyptian slavery, an event that happened thousands of years in the past, yet whose meaning applies to our situational lives.     Specifically, that HaShem and no other God or Angel, redeemed slaves from g’lut.  

    In the beginning: Yosef reveals his hidden identity unto his brothers, to the latter dedication of korbanot by the sons of Aaron, avodat HaShem stands separate and apart from prayers offered unto other Gods.  קודש.    The Haggadah of Seder Pesach teaches the קודש: HaShem commands the 613 mitzvot over the tuma of the worship of other Gods.    Do not follow after the culture or customs practiced by the Goyim who refused to accept the revelation of the Torah at Sinai.    To understand the 613 requires a strong knowledge of classic Jewish cultural practices and customs.    Tuma attempts to divorce the 613 from the cultural background of Jewish culture, customs, practices, and ways.    The Torah refers to this crime by the name of avoda zarah.  Prayer – the opposite of tefilla.  Persons who worship other Gods …… they pray.

    Persons who worship other Gods, they know nothing of the pre-condition which tohor makes upon both mitzva observance in general and tefilla in particular.    They assume that korbanot compare to primitive Bar BQ’s offered up to Gods who live in the Heaven – rationally comparable to the stars in the skies.  They do not grasp that tefilla functions as a sign of the brit faith, on par with brit melah, shabbot, and tefillen.    Tefilla means the dedication of tohor middot unto HaShem alone, as learned directly from the Chumash and NaCH: that HaShem accepts our korban tefilla middot dedications as קודש, and rejects the prayers Goyim pray unto their foreign Gods, by judging those alien Gods with curses and plagues.An interesting Pesach commentary,

    that Rabbi David Bar-Hayim, he based his lecture upon the Reshon halacha established by Rambam.     He makes efforts to explain Talmudic opinions of origination, based upon the order by which Rambam organized his halachic code.     Not to follow after the way of the Goyim, it seems to me, defines the mussar mitzva of “Jewish modesty”: not to follow or copy the customs, manners, and ways that Goyim accustom their social neighborly affairs.    The Rambam listed these halachot located within his legal code – Hilchos Avodat Kochavim.    And therein lays the rub, what defines avoda zara?    A lack of modesty.  As opposed & contradicted by the worship of idols and other God(s).    Of the two, which has מלכות priority?  The midda of modesty learns its definition, tohor humility stands upon the יסוד, the life lived by the prophet – king Moshe. Versus the 2nd Commandment revelation of the Torah at Sinai.

    Rabbi David Bar-Hayim failed to bring the mussar commandment attached to the halachic rulings that forbade to follow the practices customs or manners – both personal and dress – of the Goyim.    He likewise failed to mention the specific, yet clearly לאו דוקא Torah commandment –  After the ways of Egypt or Canaan, do not follow.  

    Alas the Rambam erred, his Code destroyed the פרדס kabbalah established by Rabbi Akiva and all his talmidim.    Rabbi David Bar-Hayim, in his turn, also failed to discuss the 13 tohor middot revelation of the Torah sh’Baal pe – Master of Torah logic – in his amplification of the Rambam’s Halachic opinions:  “his” errors doubled and compounded, “he” ripped apart the worp from its woof in the fabric of the Sha’s Bavli.    “He” divorced prophetic mussar learned directly from the aggadic drosh of logic unto the T’NaCH Primary Sources which teach the kabbala of our musar masoret, known as prophecy.

    Rabbi David Bar-Hayim follows the err made by the Rambam, similar to the prophet Chaggai who taught a tuma prophecy, consequent to the domino effect error made by the Shlomo the king – who failed to listen and to heed the mussar mitzva which the prophet Natan commanded, and which king David opened his last address to another Man in this world.    Chaggai links construction of the Temple as the mitzva of keeping and doing the curse included in the 2nd paragraph of kre’a shma.    Natan, the prophet of king David, advised the king of the k’vanna of thatTorah kre’a shma commandment:  Justice Justice pursue but the ways and customs of the Goyim – do not follow.    The construction of the Temple by king Shlomo:  this erroneous action\decision…initiated the path whereby the soul of king Shlomo walks before HaShem unto all eternity; avoda zara, reliance upon wood and stone as a blessing from Heaven, results in Civil War.   Herein defines the term: destiny of Temple Shlomo.

    The curse decree pronounced upon king David by Natan the prophet, this mussar passed as an eternal inheritance which king David’s sons for ever inherit – comparable to DNA – War among Brothers, also known from the evil sinister alias: “Civil War”.  Civil War – –  no greater plague of destruction and cruel death.    King Shlomo erred, he failed to establish the rule of law through the judicial decisions reached through aFederal Sanhedrin lateral Common Law court system.    The din by which king Shlomo launched his reputation of fame, that “courting” [people in dispute] came before the Court of king Shlomo – not before the lateral Common-law Sanhedrin Court.  

    [Common-law courtrooms stand upon logical precedents which the opposing lawyers introduce as “legal” evidence – made by two of the three Torts Court Justices – these opposing Torts court justices argue the merits of that specific Case, before the 3rd Judge of the same Torts Court.    Upon this יסוד\kabbala stand the Order of Organization of both the Small and Great Sanhedrin Capital Crime courts of law.    When the opposing Justices argued pro & con “legal”, meaning:  (the obligation to acquire similar yet earlier opinions made by all previous courtrooms; specifically – from all other Sanhedrin courtrooms across the country.    Law by means of valid precedents successfully compares previous Case/Rule cases.    The 3rd judge of a Torts court makes his ruling after reading the legal briefs and hearing the arguments of the 2 opposing judges of the court.  From this sh’itta – of precedents required – the 3 Justices of the Torts court rooms determine judicial justice), earlier halachic precedents, meaning: legal rulings made by earlier\previous Case/Rule Common-law court rulings].

    The prophets teach the strong mussar commandment: justice justice pursue.    From this tohor concept of mussar, Natan the prophet interpreted the k’vanna of the 2nd paragraph – acceptance of the curse obligation within the mitzva of kre’a shma.    Specifically the dedication to do all mitzvot, tohor mussar middot mitztvot לשמה.    Herein explains why rabbis in Judea did not have to wear distinctive garments to acknowledge their righteousness.    Rather these Court Rabbis enjoy the potential to transform their lives unto the madraega/level of Baal Shem Tov\master of the Good Name – –  meaning – –  fear of heaven.  Doing mitzvot לשמה the reputation and Good Name of Judean Jews.    Doing mitzvot oblivious of what means לשמה – the slandered reputation and Bad Name whereby Goyim condemn g’lut Jews – throughout human history.    This distinction learns from the opening opinion on the first Mishna of גיטין.

    Tonight begins the 10 day of the Omer count: One Week and 3 days of the Omer, wherein Yidden makes a search to remove all avoda zara from our midsts prior to acceptance of the Torah revelation on Chag Shevuoth.

    What distinguishes between Aggadita from Midrashim.    Simply stated, Midrashim function as Gaonic commentary which teaches how to study Talmudic Aggadita.    Aggadita follows the Order of the Mishna, whereas Midrash follows the Order of the T’NaCH.    Both this and that scholarship learns through the פרדס combination, specifically of דרוש ופשט.  The combination of רמז וסוד attaches the learned פשט gained from the דרוש mussar study made upon T’NaCH literature.

    All fabrics woven contain a warp and a weft.    The fabric of the Talmud contrasts Halacha with Aggadita.  Rabbi Akiva’s פרדס kabbala, specifically רמז וסוד, these two essential aspects of the פרדס kabbala weave the mussar commanded by the T’NaCH prophets into the ritual observance of halachic mitzvot ritual observances.    Mussar, derived from T’NaCH sources, defines the k’vanna of all Torah commandments, prophetic mitzvot, and rabbinic halachot.    A process comparable to the multiple steps required to make bread.    The framers of the Talmud based all their Torah scholarship upon the פרדס kabbala taught by rabbi Akiva and ALL his talmidim.

    The Tzeddukim and later Karaite heretics, both movements sought to limit the masoret of Jewish culture and traditions restricted strictly to the simple פשט reading of the T’NaCH.    This error, it seems to me, comes under the heading known as טיפש פשט.    Yet Yeshiva’s across Israel, never learned in any Yeshiva in g’lut ב”ה, brainwash students to ask: what’s the פשט, what’s the פשט mantra!    Little wonder that karaite heretics today, nothing really separates them from traditional Jewry.    The latter no more bases halacha upon the Talmud than do the Karaites.

    The דרוש component of פרדס makes a logical comparison of T’NaCH sources with other T’NaCH sources.  The דרוש aspect of פרדס, how it learns T’NaCH literature directly compares to the style which defines all the 6 Orders of the Mishna whose format follows a Case/Rule common law system.    Common law stands upon the יסוד of close, valid logical precedents – case study comparisons.    Comparing precedential case studies of halacha directly compares to how דרוש, expressed through both Aggadita and Midrash, which makes measured “middot” comparisons between sugiot/sub chapters in the organization of T’NaCH literature.    Modern day Yeshivot, in Israel, pay no more attention to the organization of sugiot within the T’NaCH than does Dof Yomi give respect to the order of the sugiot within the Talmud.    The יסוד by which Torah logic works: order.

    Comes a new assimilated rabbi upon the scene, the Rambam, this heretic did not understand the kabbala taught by rabbi Akiva and ALL his talmidim, the פרדס Divine Chariot mysticism, which the framers of the Talmud universally embraced as the basis, how to teach the Oral Torah revelation revealed at Horev – 40 days after the sin of the Golden Calf.    The Rambam therefore held and publicly taught that the study of Aggadita and Midrash should limit the impact of the Jewish cultural masoret (Aggadita and Midrash) to philosophical allegorical and symbolic interpretations.    Utterly false and total narishkeit.  

    The Rambam abandoned the lights of Hanukkah.    The p’rushim dedicated the Cohen nation to interpret the Written Torah limited strictly and only to the פרדס Oral Torah lights of Hanukkah.    Assimilated to the foreign and alien rediscovery of ancient Greek philosophy, the Rambam, like the Tzeddukim before him, organized his tuma halachic code upon Aristotle’s philosophy of logic.    A terrible Civil War ensued.  G’lut Jewry did not general armies to fight it’s Civil Wars.    But like all Civil Wars, Jewish anarchy invited foreign interventions, comparable to the Yatzir of dogs who sniff the butts of other dogs.

    The Goyim burned the Talmud in Paris and entire Jewish communities in England, France, Spain, Germany, virtually all Western European countries, these war criminal barbarian governments, robbed, plundered, and expelled stateless Jewish refugees from virtually all Western European countries.    This vile oppression of stateless unarmed Jewish refugee minority populations caused a huge population transfer of Jews fleeing from Nazi like Western European tyranny unto Easter Europe and Russia.  The utter hypocrisy of European leaders, both religious and secular, today post Shoah Europe piously denounces Israel for the crime of refusing to give Balestinians a homeland, carved out of the guts of the post ’48 Jewish state.  European nation states remain the eternal enemy of the Jewish people, from ancient Greeks and Romans to the current EU abomination.

    The Torah dedicates the service of the Moshiach – the House of Aaron – to service of avodat HaShem, restricted to times of breathing tohor middot spirits.  Ancient Greek schools of philosophy based their logic systems upon mathematics, not tohor middot.  A cohen who attempted avodat HaShem while breathing tuma spirits, the din of כרת condemns them to charem.  Just as Ishmael and Esau have no portion in the world to come, so too do all Cohonim who worship HaShem, through korbanot or mitzvot observance, while breathing tuma spirits.  The Talmud teaches this ‘fear of heaven’ when it compares anger to avoda zarah.

    To expect worshippers of avoda zara to behave with ‘fear of heaven’, sooner would a bear crap sitting on a toilet than Goyim mature their emotions with ‘fear of heaven’.  Therefore it’s simply not reasonable to simply condemn Goyim war crimes and utter barbarism.  It takes two hands to clap.  Jews did not descend unto the depravity of g’lut because we did mitzvot observance לשמה.  On Yom Kippur Yidden scattered across g’lut, they open the doors to the Ark and cry out unto the 13 middot of HaShem.  Yet never once does g’lut Jewry ask: what separates this tohor midda from its brothers?  Obviously, a man can not dedicate tohor middot unto HaShem, while standing before a Safer Torah during tefilla, if never once throughout his life does he seek Torah definitions which separate and distinguish one tohor midda from its brothers, both דאורייתא ודרבנן.

    The difference between mussar and theology, the latter teaches people what they should believe concerning the Gods; contrasted by the former which commands tohor middot unto all generations of the chosen Cohen nation.  The latter most essentially defines avoda zara whereas the former teaches the most essential properties of prophecy.  No one generation, much less a lone Jesus like individual can “fulfill” the mussar commandments of the prophets.  Mussar, never given to an individual to sprout and grow within his heart alone.  Through the mussar commandments, HaShem commanded the prophets to instruct and rebuke the Yatzir Ha’Rah of all generations of the Cohen nation forever and unto eternity, like the stars in the heavens.

    The Omer count traditionally counts the 49 days between the day after Pesach to Shevuoth.  However, it seems to me that since both the two other regalim last for 7 days.  That it’s possible to mimic the holiness of these Chaggim by continuing the Omer count throughout the year.  50 x 7 = 350.  Hence a person can concentrate to purge avoda zara from his life and lifestyle throughout the entire year, thereby making himself worthy to accept the revelation of the Torah at Sinai 7 times throughout a single year.

    The style of Talmudic law employs a Case/Rule system which compares Case/halachic rulings compared one to other precedential Courtroom rulings.  To what does this system of Oral Torah logic compare?  Mimicry: the synchronization of one’s expressions, vocalizations, postures and movements with those of another person;  when people duplicate or mirror their companions’ expressions of emotion, they come to feel reflections of those companions’ emotions.  Oral Torah logic stands upon the יסוד of tohor emotional middot.  This logic system strives to build social harmony through people duplicating among themselves these tohor emotional expressions and/or feelings within and throughout the society as a whole.

    The focus of Oral Torah middot of logic endeavors for the Cohen nation to dedicate tohor middot unto the service of faith in HaShem our God.  The heart of this logic system format works to develop and mature the emotional mind together with rational thought processes.  Ancient Greek philosophers by stark contrast, their logic systems stand solely upon rational mathematics.  The latter system does nothing to develop and mature the emotional mind.  For this reason alone the lights of Hanukkah limit the interpretation of the Written Torah strictly and only to the Oral Torah middot of logic.

    Tohor middot of logic, they “trigger”, comparable to a person who yawns which causes other people to likewise yawn.  Human social interactions involve much more than simple word communications.  A fundamental flaw in modern social media cell phone communications, people communicate without seeing or responding to non rational “trigger” behaviors expressed by others in real time, actual social interactions.  

    As previously repeatedly stated tohor middot a person dedicates to the service of HaShem as part of the brit Cohen nation faith.  It sharply contrasts with ’emotional contagion’ witchcraft which employs tuma: selfish tuma, self serving techniques to control and influence other people; to entice and seduce others to achieve self gratification purposes and designs.

    This logic system studies the Torah in order to define tohor middot and then encourages others, in all social interactions, to mirror these tohor middot dedicated unto HaShem as holy.  For example: a fundamental tuma midda – anger; the expression of this tuma midda causes an immediate change in how other people react and consequently change their emotions – almost instantaneously.  Emotions project non-verbal signals of communications.

    The nature of virtually all human beings, to stronger or lesser degrees, we all can feel a certain degree of empathy with other people.  Nazi propaganda employed the tuma midda of anger to hypnotize all the peoples of Europe to feel feelings of hatred and disgust toward Jews.  The latter half of the 20th Century changed the definition of anti-Semitism away from opposing Jewish integration into European society to loathing hatred of Jews.

    Avodat HaShem strives to spread, throughout the bnai brit communities and societies, planned, dedicated, defined tohor middot, among and between members of Jewish society.  The anti-thesis of tohor middot – – tuma middot.  Nazi witchcraft spread tuma middot across Germany and Europe in only a few years.  Businesses across the planet today employ advertising techniques which mimics positive human emotions to sell their products.

    Mimesis has variable definitions.  But it seems to me that it compares to how a predatory virus duplicates and spreads within host cells, it dominates and consumes the host prey.  The Beatles revolution on Western culture in the 1960s serves as a powerful example.  Elvis Presley likewise mezmorized millions.  The anti-war movement which recognized the evils of US imperialism which criminal leadership sitting in Washington initiated predatory wars in Vietnam, Afghanistan, and Iraq.

    Some 20th century scholars argue that ‘social contagion’ triggers a spontaneous imitation by others, the opposite of rational conscious based thinking and decision making.  The dedication of tohor middot to HaShem through tefilla seeks to impact the spread of these Torah defined tohor middot which affects and changes attitudes or behaviours of how and what others feel within any given bnai brit society – independent of the rational awareness of these tohor middot by the common man.

    Ancient Greek society sought to channel and control societal Order through employment of rhetoric.  Obama employed this rhetoric technique in 2008 with his political slogan: “CHANGE”.  Public leadership to a large degree inspires within a larger audience a social influence, like for instance the rapid spread of counter culture movements within a society or the election of John Kennedy and camelot.

    The dedication of tohor  middot unto HaShem through the mitzva of tefilla, his non verbal communication of tohor middot function as non verbal spirits which promotes social conformity and/or harmony.  They assist to create an emotional climate, a morale among and between people.  The dedication of tohor middot seeks to cause others to mimic these non verbal tohor spirits in their daily lives.  Mussar defines T’NaCH prophecy.  It plants non verbal ‘seed’ feelings into the hearts of others living in all generations for ever.

    In 1959, the year of my birth, a Ukrainian Jewish descendant, Erving Goffman, conceptualized in his masterpiece: The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life.  There he introduced the use of imagination triggered by the medium of theatre, to portray the importance of human social interaction.  He argues that when individuals come in contact with other people, they attempt to control or guide the impression that others perceive about themselves, by changing or fixing his or her setting, appearance, and manner – something like a job interview.

    Tohor middot validates human dignity and consequently opposes all attempts to humiliate others, as l’shon ha’ra so powerfully proves and demonstrates.  Tuma middot by stark contrast centers self aggrandizement accomplished through the degradation and shame of other individuals and/or groups; Yom HaShoah validates this premise and definition.  Goffman perceived human life as comparable to dramatic theater.  In his theatrical metaphor, he argues that a person presents himself to others based upon cultural values, norms, and beliefs.  The presentation has a set goal of self acceptance from the audience through a carefully conducted performance.  This idea works well in harmony with halachic ritual observances.  A scantily dressed woman, regardless of her natural beauty and charms, receives an immediate negative reaction if she walks through the streets of Mea Shearim in Jerusalem.  Therefore the framers of the Talmud combine mussar Aggadita together with Halachic ritualism.  Herein defines the correct way and intent of the Framers as to how to correctly learn the Sha’s Bavli.

    Amida, Jewish tefilla: what does a Man stand before?  A Torah scroll.  Why?  Blessings, contrasted by praises like Tehillim, exist as toldoth of oaths.  Notice that the Shemone Esri lacks שם ומלכות, don’t be shocked, so does the Cohen blessing דאורייתא!!!  So what did rabbi Yochanon in ברכות mean when his posok halacha ruled that a blessing requires שם ומלכות?  Tefilla dedicates tohor middot b/c tefilla has replaced korbanot, and the primary pre-condition for korbanot …. a tohor status.  And that’s the rub … how can a person dedicate tohor middot unto HaShem when Yidden fail to discern the distinction between the 13 tohor middot דאורייתא?  What differentiates אל from רחום from חנון etc?  Neither you, nor your husband, nor his friends in the bet knesset nor your Jewish family scattered across America have ever thought about defining tohor middot from the Torah!  On the basis of tohor middot stands the Oral Torah logic system.  

    But assimilated American Jewry relies upon the logic of Aristotle and Plato, of Hegel’s dialectics and Marx.  For you the lights of Hanukkah mean nothing more than an empty ritual observance of lighting candles.  But Hanukkah commemorates the P’rushim vs. Tzeddukim Civil War.  The latter Cohenim has embraced and assimilated to Greek culture as did the Spanish rabbis with the Rambam as their head.  Never once have any assimilated American Jew ever questioned:  Just how did the Rambam code radically change the halacha as recorded in the Talmud!  Notice that modern day Yidden, as a rule, refers directly to Reshon scholarship divorced from the Talmud.  Why?  B/c the Rambam code abandoned the Oral Torah logic system based upon middot (Derech Aretz precedes the Torah) in favor of Greek logic formats!  

    For most Jews tefilla and prayer mean the exact same thing.  But translations never define terms.  Brit does not mean covenant.  Brit most essentially entails swearing a Torah oath.  All T’NaCH translations made by goyim — they all translate the Name of HaShem to some other word.  Father or Allah etc etc that’s the sin of the Golden Calf where Aaron translated the Name unto אלהים.  Neither the Bible nor Koran ever once brin the Name of HaShem revealed at Sinai.  A Torah oath requires swearing in the Name of HaShem.    The error of this avoda zara: HaShem lives as Spirit and the Name does not exist as a word.  That’s why Abba Shaul, a great Tanna forbade pronouncing the Name according to its letters on pain of the din of כרת.  Rabbi Akiva teaches that simple folk who pronounce the Name Yahweh and other such narishkeit, that they have no portion in the world to come!  Hence we replace the Name with Adonai.  

    The Goyim translate the Name as Lord.  Adonai translates into Lord.  But our sages replaced the Name with Adonai so as not to treat the Spirit of Life as a word.  Goyim make no such distinction, and therefore the Bible and the Church violate the 1st and 2nd commandments of Sinai!  Islam too does the exact same error.  Its really rather humorous in a pathetic sort of way.  Explain the “10 commandments”, when after the opening 2 Commandments that Israel demanded from Moshe that he go up Sinai (26th day, 3 weeks and 5 days, of the Omer)????  

    Every 7th to 10th word in the Koran — prophet.  LOL Never once does the Koran distinguish between a prophet and an Angel.  The Torah refers to Moshe sent to Egypt as an Angel.  Yaacov went “Angels” unto Esau.  The Torah defines prophet as a person who commands mussar.  The mussar of the 10 commandment editing of the Torah instructs a connection between the 10 plagues to the revelation of the Name of HaShem at Sinai.  We learn (mitzvot learn from other mitzvot) how to pronounce the Name from the mitzva of blowing the Shofar!  The 3 notes of the shofar affix to positive, negative, positive time oriented mitzvot.  When you come to the Name in da’avening ya blow it.  Based upon the brit which Avram swore to HaShem, that the Spirit of HaShem would eternally live within the hearts of the chosen brit Cohen people.  For a Cohen to do avodat HaShem (tefilla in place of korbanot) the Cohen had to breath tohor spirits.

    Tohor spirits, they function as a trigger – something like a yawn.  The framers of the Talmud wove a warp weft fabric of halacha and aggadita.  This format of learning follows the kabbala of rabbi Akiva, how פרדס defines the revelation of the Oral Torah 13 middot on Horev, 40 days after the sin of the golden calf, on Yom Kippur.  Drosh and P’shat a couple, Remiz and Sod a couple.  The former affixes to Aggadita while the latter affixes to halacha.  The Rambam code divorced Aggadita from Halacha and that רשע did not even give Aggadita her get!  Consequently, halacha changed from a ritual observance attached with a prophetic mussar as its k’vanna unto codes of religious law that Yidden do because its written in the Shulchan Aruch!  Small wonder that the Reform rabbis despised halacha and publicly profaned the Name of HaShem among the Jewish people and the entire world.

    To what does the disaster of the Rambam halachic code compare?  To the volcanic Krakatoa eruption in 536 which over the course of 300 years caused a world wide drought and climate change which witnessed the rise of Islam (Mecca and Medina had water) and the collapse of major cities in King Arthur’s Britain unto Mexico due to disease and drought!  

    The cousin of the Ramban, the Rabbeinu Yona put the Rambam into herem!  A disastrous Civil War ensued among exiled Jewish refugee populations scattered across Western European countries.  The anarchy and chaos which ensued witnessed the expulsion of Jews from England, the public burning of all Talmudic literature/manuscripts (before the printing press) in Paris France, the expulsion of all Jews from France, which permanently destroyed the Rashi/Tosafot schools on how to correctly learn the Talmud.  The imposition of crushing taxation upon the Jews of Germany which destroyed the Jewish trades and livelihood.  Followed up by the war crime of placing all Jews into Ghetto prisons.  This act caused a huge population transfer of Jews living in Western Europe; these refugee populations fled to Eastern Europe and Russia!

    The Rif, not the Talmud, introduced waiting between eating meat and milk. The Rif imposed his “fence around the Torah’ due to the powerful influence of the Karaites in his generation. Today Karaites hardly exist, not so in the days of the Rif. After eating meat, if you wash your mouth, the Torah there afterwards permits the consumption of milk, with no waiting time intervention. Chicken while not cooked with Milk, like the recipe of Kentucky Fried Chicken, which soaks the chicken in milk, obviously forbidden according to Rabbi Akiva. Nonetheless, immediately after eating chicken a person can enjoy ice-cream, even without rinsing the mouth. The same reason as stated above. The Karaites emphasized the permission, according to the simple reading of the Torah, that a person could choose to consume milk products immediately after eating meat.  The טיפש פשט of the Karaites negated the kabbala taught by Rabbi Akiva by which פרדס explains how to employ and learn the Oral Torah revelation made at Horev on Yom Kippur.

    Why the Torah prohibition against cooking meat and milk together?  The Torah defines prophecy as mussar.  What mussar does this commandment teach?  Fear of Heaven, also known as Baal Shem Tov.  Mixture of meat and milk in the flesh pots destroys the reputation of both meat and milk, despite the fact that both separately qualify as kosher.  A man with fear of heaven always strives to build his ‘Good Name’.  Mussar applies unto all generations of bnai brit, and therefore defines the Torah term: prophecy.
    Why did Saadia Gaon place the Karaites into charem? Perhaps for the identical reason that Rabbeinu Yonah, the cousin of the Ramban, placed the Rambam into charem!  Neither this nor that understood the kabbala taught first by rabbi Akiva and thereafter embraced by all rabbinic opinions included within the Sha’s Talmud! Specifically rabbi Akiva interpreted the k’vanna of the Oral Torah as expressed through the discipline of Torah scholarship known as פרדס, P’shat, remiz, drosh, and sod.  The fabric of Talmudic scholarship employs a warp/weft of Halacha/Aggadita.  The halacha of the Rambam divorced the halacha from its aggadita.  That רשע refused to give aggadita her get.  The consequence of this gross error, Yidden observes halacha like robots rather than affix prophetic mussar unto defined ritual observances.
    The Karaite heretics limited the study of the Torah into a טיפש פשט, something like modern day “rabbis” who say you must da’aven the Siddur according to the פשוטו של מקרא. Narishkeit, tefilla starkly contrasts with the avoda zara of prayer because all positive time oriented commandments require k’vanna. Rabbi Yochanon ruled that in order to make a blessing, a blessing requires שם ומלכות, ברוך אתה ה’ אלוקנו מלך העולם. Another mountain hanging by a hair … what defines דאורייתא the term מלך?The Gra argues that the term המלך as found in the Book of Ester, that it makes a רמז to the Creator of the Universe. This interpretation bothers me, because המלך has the exact Gematria as המן!! Purim contrasts the tuma middot expressed through extreme anger as demonstrated by the king when the Queen refused to show up naked to the party, and Haman because Mordecai refused to stand before his honor…דרך ארץ קדמה לתורה.  The interpretation of the Gra, it seems to me, differentiates between HaShem and all other Gods worshipped by Goyim.   This key understanding explains why the B’hag ruled that the reading of Megillat Esther qualifies as a mitzva from the Torah! נכנס יין יצא סוד. Purim reveals which middot drives a person – tohor or tuma. The latter terms exist as spirits as fermented drinks also go by the name “spirits”.How does the Torah define: מלכות. The Birkat Kohanim, the language from the Torah of kre’a shma, and the Shemone Esri, one and all lack שם ומלכות!!! All 3 clearly qualify as Torah blessings! Therefore מלכות as a term cannot define מלכות any more than the word green can define the color green to a man born blind.

    The opening Gemara of ברכות to the Sha’s Bavli qualifies as the “hair” upon which hangs all discussions throughout the Talmud Bavli! The Talmud begins with ברכות to distinguish the quality of blessings, from that of saying Tehillim. A blessing exists as a toldah of swearing an oath; both can transgress, and say the Name of HaShem in vain. Not so reciting Tehillim. The Shemone Esri, ideally a person da’avens in a Bet Knesset in front of a Sefer Torah. Why? A person must “stand”/Amida before a Sefer Torah in order to swear a Torah oath! Tefillen, like a Sefer Torah – on what specific? On the פרט of swearing oaths. The distinction between the two: a person swears an oath, like the mitzva of kre’a shma, sitting and not standing. Herein explains the dispute between Beit Hillel and Beit Shammai. The latter said kre’a shma standing also.How does the Torah define מלכות? The dedication of tohor middot. Any man who dedicates tohor middot unto HaShem, that man qualifies as the Moshiach. Hence the Gemara of Sanhedrin teaches that כלל ישראל, in all generations,qualify as the Moshiach! The opening Mishna of גיטין differentiates between Israel and g’lut. In g’lut the Yidden, including the rabbis, do not know how to do mitzvot לשמה. Doing mitzvot לשמה, meaning dedicating tohor middot unto the service of HaShem, through how a Jew behaves towards his peers. 

    A Cohen, for example, had to breath tohor spirits before the Torah permitted that Cohen to do avodat HaShem. Tefilla stands in the place of korbanot, as Israel lives as the chosen Cohen nation. What distinguishes, from the Torah, ה’ אל רחום וחנון וכו’ וכו? If a Jew can not discern the distinction which separates one tohor midda from another, then that Jew has never kept any commandment from the Torah ie מלכות! And consequently, based upon this understanding of the term מלך, likewise explains the long g’lut which culminated in the Shoah.

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  2. A few contemporary reviews of the Rambam and his impact on Yiddishkeit today. טוב

    Before learning the 6th Mishna, based upon how the Rif halachic commentary learned the Talmud. It appears necessary to introduce positive comments contemporaries have made on the Rambam. The contrast to what they write with what this super commentary on the Rif brings as evidence. In his introduction to the Mishna Torah, the Rambam never once mentions the kabbala of Rabbi Akiva and how it defines the Oral Torah – which the Mishna and Gemara works codify. This fact represents a significant omission.

    Who questions the “RULES” established by the Rambam and his peers, which determines which and which rabbis in the Talmud – from these restricted opinions comes present day halacha? As a young student, acceptance of these rules became mandatory upon all Yeshiva students! Why? During the Dark Ages, where the conditions to travel, both difficult and dangerous – in those times these rules permitted rabbis living in isolated communities to poskin halacha for their “Island” communities of Jewish refugees. These rules of how to poskin halacha, effectively maintained a consistent tradition for all g’lut Jewry. But when travel became far less difficult and dangerous, why maintain a dictatorship of how to poskin halacha?

    Remember scratching my head, wondering how the Tannaim and Amoraim scholars ever derived the concept of “Halacha” in the first place. Halacha, existed as, at least to me, an undefined and troubling “given”. As an atheist – praise HaShem, have always challenged the validity of rhetoric which Universally never defines its key terms upon which that same rhetoric thereafter hangs “mountains of theology” upon floating strings – never once ever defined. Then Rav Aaron Nemuraskii came into my life. He taught me that the Torah teaches mussar NOT theology. Neither halacha nor the rules by which later scholars poskin halacha from rabbinic authorities within the Sha’s Talmud qualify as mussar. This caused me to challenge the validity of the ever so popular, “mandatory rules” by which the famous halachic codes poskined “their” halacha.

    How does halacha define mussar? This question caused me to likewise reject the rhetoric premises by which virtually all rabbinic authorities blindly accept halacha, as a dogmatic act of faith. This put me on a head on collision course with Yiddishkeit. Almost from day one in the Yeshiva, through a comparative study first of the Rif, Rosh, and Rambam codes, and later expanded my search to find a definition for halacha, studied the B’hag, Beit Yosef, and Tur\ Shulchan Aruch codifications as well. None of these works truly wet my whistle. After making a close study of them, still had no clarity just how the Tannaim and Amoraim developed the concept of “halacha”.

    Then came Rabbi Nemuraskii, his instruction made a study Midrashic sources. And suddenly out of the blue, it dawned upon me the meaning of Rabbi Akiva’s פרדס chariot mysticism! How the פרדס format of logic defined the revelation of the Oral Torah at Horev; how through this logic system, how to derive and define “halacha” such that this definition learned hand in glove with mussar. Rav Aaron then introduced me to the Yerushalmi which teaches that over 247 prophets occupied themselves in writing the Shemone Esrei … and at a stroke, like an apple falling upon my head, it all came together!

    To da’avin with k’vanna requires mussar. Because Torah teaches mussar NOT theology and definitely, emphatically NOT dogmatism. It bothered me after reading Rambam’s introduction to the Mishna Torah wherein he declared that the Babylonian Talmud exists as an obligation upon all Israel. He lumped the Gemara up together with the Mishna, and made no distinction between the two! Furthermore, the Rambam makes not a single reference to the Siddur! Halacha and the Siddur work hand in glove together – a most basic definition of terms. When the Rambam introduction addressed the subject of the Gaonim scholarship, he fails to mention their works of Midrashim! Rav Aaron’s sh’itta of learning centered around how Midrash interprets the Talmud. It became clear to me, from thereon that the Rambam had not learned Midrash. He did not grasp how Midrash interprets the Talmud. Visited many Yeshivot in Jerusalem and Bene Beraq, not one of those institutions make a study of Midrash!
    Rav Avigdor Miller on The Rambam and Aristotle

    Q:
    You quoted from the Rambam that we should stay away from the gentiles and wicked people. But the Rambam himself was very much involved with gentiles, in particular with Aristotle. Why?

    A:
    I’ll explain it to you. When you’re sitting now by that tape recorder recording this lecture, you’re taking something made maybe by goyim and thought up perhaps by goyim. You ride on buses driven by goyim. If you have a car, so the car and the gasoline are made and supplied by goyim. Before

    The answer is, whatever useful things goyim have to give you, you take it; if it’s an implement, technology, you can use it. And Aristotle to the Rambam was just a useful mechanism. He supplied him with information. But the Rambam wouldn’t sit with him. He wouldn’t sit with him!

    Now the truth is that the Rambam wouldn’t advise us even to read Aristotle’s books. He was able to read the books and pick out of them the things that seemed to him useful. And the truth is, after all is said and done, the Rambam took from Aristotle things which he thought were completely true but they weren’t. You know, today it’s a pity because we learn the Rambam in Hilchos Yesodei HaTorah and everything there is perfect except for the few things that come from Greek philosophy. Today they’re meaningless.

    So what the Rambam took from Torah is forever and ever. But what the Rambam took by following the ways of Aristotle are useless today. That’s why certain parts of Moreh Nevuchim are meaningless today. And the Vilna Gaon, the Gra, says about the Rambam: הפילוסופיה הארורה הטתו ברוב לקחה, that the cursed philosophy deceived him. The Gra says that; the accursed philosophy deceived the Rambam! So even when the Rambam tried to pick out the useful things, in some cases he was deceived.

    But that was the Rambam’s approach to Aristotle. It’s like our approach, let’s say, to medicine. If a gentile specialist tells you that this and this diet or this or this medicine is good for you, so it’s not associating with him. It’s just like using his tape recorder.

    Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

    Moses ben Maimon [known to English speaking audiences as Maimonides and Hebrew speaking as Rambam] (1138–1204) is the greatest Jewish philosopher of the medieval period and is still widely read today. The Mishneh Torah, his 14-volume compendium of Jewish law, established him as the leading rabbinic authority of his time and quite possibly of all time. His philosophic masterpiece, the Guide of the Perplexed, is a sustained treatment of Jewish thought and practice that seeks to resolve the conflict between religious knowledge and secular. Although heavily influenced by the Neo-Platonized Aristotelianism that had taken root in Islamic circles, it departs from prevailing modes of Aristotelian thought by emphasizing the limits of human knowledge and the questionable foundations of significant parts of astronomy and metaphysics. Maimonides also achieved fame as a physician and wrote medical treatises on a number of diseases and their cures. Succeeding generations of philosophers wrote extensive commentaries on his works, which influenced thinkers as diverse as Aquinas, Spinoza, Leibniz, and Newton.

    Conclusion

    How one assesses Maimonides’ philosophy depends on one’s own philosophic view. For a traditional theist like Aquinas, he is right to say that there are issues, e.g. creation, that cannot be resolved by demonstration and to insist that all attempts to anthropomorphize God are misguided. The problem is that in rejecting anthropomorphism, he may have gone too far. If God bears no likeness to the created order, and if terms like wise, powerful, or lives are completely ambiguous when applied to God and us, the conception of divinity we are left with is too thin for the average worshipper to appreciate.

    For a naturalist like Spinoza, Maimonides is too willing to dismiss science and take refuge in traditional concepts like creation and divine volition. Granted that medieval astronomy did not have a good explanation of planetary motion; with the advent of the scientific revolution, it found one – at least in Spinoza’s opinion. If Maimonides were to remain true to his word and accept the strongest argument wherever it leads, as far as Spinoza’s is concerned, he would have to embrace the new science, the eternity of the world, and the necessity of every event that takes place in it. In order to do this, he would have to abandon the idea that the Bible is a source of philosophic and scientific truth and look to it only for the light it sheds on how to live. Needless to say, this would be a disaster for Maimonides.

    Even if Maimonides were to make this move and read the Bible for its ethical content, problems would remain. Maimonides is an elitist. Closeness to God is measured by how much knowledge one acquires. The result is that people whose situations prevent them from pursuing advanced studies cannot be close to God or love God. Whether it is right or wrong, this view offends modern sensibilities, which are much more democratic.

    Finally for an atheist, Maimonides’ philosophy shows us what happens if you remove all anthropomorphic content from your conception of God: you remove all content of any kind. In the end, you are left with a God whose essence is unknowable and indescribable. Of what possible value is such a conception either to philosophy or religion?

    At his trial for impiety in 399 B.C., Socrates was asked how it is that the wisest person in Athens claims to be ignorant of the knowledge he seeks. His answer (Apology 23a-b) is that he is wise because unlike others, he recognizes that when measured against divine wisdom, human wisdom is of little or no value. Although it is doubtful that he read Socrates’ words, there is little question that this is the insight Maimonides is trying to preserve. That person is wisest who recoils in awe and humility in the face of something infinitely greater than he or she can fathom. This insight explains why, despite his best efforts, Maimonides was unable to find airtight demonstrations for many of his insights about God, creation, and revelation and is often content just to tip the scales in one direction or present an honest assessment of the problem. In a recent work, Alfred Ivry (2016, 4) contends that Maimonides himself is one of the perplexed for whom the Guide was written.

    Viewed in a sympathetic light, Maimonides’ elitism stems from the recognition that few people will be satisfied with this. Although not everyone in the history of philosophy would agree, there is no question that Maimonides’ view has a long history and remains a powerful alternative.

    Maimonides (Rambam) and His Texts | My Jewish Learning

    Maimonides lived under Islamic rule for his entire life, and he both benefited and suffered greatly because of it. Maimonides spent his formative years in a society in which tolerant Muslim leadership catalyzed vibrant cultural exchange with its Jewish and Christian minorities. Islamic scholarship in particular influenced him, especially later in his life. Unfortunately, when Maimonides was 10 years old, a fundamentalist Berber tribe called the Almohads entered Córdoba and presented Jewish residents with three choices: conversion, exile or death. The Maimoni family chose exile, leaving Córdoba and eventually emigrating to Morocco in about 1160, when Maimonides was in his early 20s. Many scholars believe Maimonides may have outwardly practiced Islam during this period, not out of belief but in order to protect himself, and that he continued to practice Judaism secretly. In 1165, the Maimoni family set sail for Palestine. After a brief yet formative visit to the land of Israel, then under Crusader rule, they finally settled in Egypt in 1166 — first in Alexandria, and eventually in Fustat (part of present-day Cairo). Maimonides lived there until his death in 1204.
    Mishneh Torah (written 1168-1178)

    Maimonides composed the Mishneh Torah (literally, a “repetition” or “second” Torah) over a 10-year period, continuing to edit it until his death. Comprising 14 books and nearly 1,000 chapters, it was the first ever comprehensive code of halakha (Jewish law). In writing the MT, Maimonides drew from earlier source, such as the Mishnah, Tosefta, Midrash,

    and Talmud, with an encyclopedic memory and considerable attention to both intertextuality and literary aesthetics. His admiration for these works notwithstanding, he designed the MT to be so exhaustive and accurate that it would make all but the Torah itself obsolete. In his introduction, he instructs, “One should read the written Torah and then read [the MT]. Then he will know the oral Torah in its entirety, without needing to read any other text beside.”

    In order to make the Mishneh Torah accessible to the entire Jewish world, Maimonides organized it topically and composed it in clear, concise Hebrew. In a radical departure from tradition, Maimonides omitted from the MT both the names of earlier scholars and most of their opinions, preserving only those rulings he deemed correct. Critics attacked him for this decision, spawning an even greater literature that grows even to this day. Among his fiercest critics was Abraham ben David, the Ravad, (c. 1125-1198) a great Provençal Talmudist who criticized Maimonides for omitting his sources, among other things. Nonetheless, the Mishneh Torah inspired important scholars such as Rabbi Jacob ben Asher (c. 1269 – 1343) and Rabbi Joseph Caro (c. 1488 – 1575), two of the most important later codifiers, changing the landscape of Jewish thought forever.

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