The Guide for the Perplexed (Hebrew:מורה נבוכים, translit. Moreh Nevuchim, Arabic: dalālat alḥā’irīn דלאל̈ה אלחאירין دلالة الحائرين) is one of the major works of Rabbi Moshe ben Maimon, better known as Maimonides or "the Rambam". Transliteration is the practice of Transcribing a Word or text written in one Writing system into another writing system or system of rules for such practice Arabic (ar الْعَرَبيّة (informally ar عَرَبيْ) in terms of the number of speakers is the largest living member of the Semitic language Rabbi (pronunciation, although in English usually) in Judaism, means a religious ‘teacher’ or more literally ‘my great one’ when addressing any master Moses Maimonides ( March 30 1135 – December 13 1204) also known as the Rambam, was a Rabbi, Physician, and Moses Maimonides ( March 30 1135 – December 13 1204) also known as the Rambam, was a Rabbi, Physician, and It was written in the 12th Century in the form of a three-volume letter to his student, Rabbi Joseph ben Judah ibn Aknin, the son of Rabbi Judah, and is the main source of the Rambam's philosophical views, as opposed to his opinions on Jewish law. Joseph ben Judah ibn Aknin (c1150–c1220 was a Jewish writer of numerous treatises mostly on the Mishnah and the Talmud. Halakha ( הלכה; alternative transliterations include Halocho and Halacha) is the collective body of Jewish Religious law Since many of the philosophical concepts, such as his view of theodicy and the relationship between philosophy and religion, are relevant beyond strictly Jewish theology, it has been the work most commonly associated with Maimonides in the non-Jewish world and it is known to have influenced several major non-Jewish philosophers. Theodicy (θiːˈɒdɪsi (adjectival form theodicean) is a specific branch of Theology and Philosophy that attempts to reconcile the existence of Philosophy is the study of general problems concerning matters such as existence knowledge truth beauty justice validity mind and language A religion is a set of Tenets and practices often centered upon specific Supernatural and moral claims about Reality, the Cosmos Theology is the study of a god or the gods from a religious perspective  Following its publication, "almost every philosophic work for the remainder of the Middle Ages cited, commented on, or criticized Maimonides' views. " Within Judaism, the Guide became widely popular and controversial, with many Jewish communities requesting copies of the manuscript. Judaism (from the Greek Ioudaïsmos, derived from the Hebrew יהודה Yehudah, " Judah " in Hebrew יַהֲדוּת Yahedut PLEASE TAKE NOTE************
The Guide for the Perplexed was originally written in Arabic and was first translated into Hebrew by a contemporary of Maimonides, Samuel ben Judah ibn Tibbon. Arabic (ar الْعَرَبيّة (informally ar عَرَبيْ) in terms of the number of speakers is the largest living member of the Semitic language Samuel ben Judah Ibn Tibbon, more commonly known as Samuel ibn Tibbon ( Hebrew: שמואל בן יהודה אבן תבון, Arabic: The work is divided into three books. According to Maimonides, he wrote the Guide "to promote the true understanding of the real spirit of the Law, to guide those religious persons who, adhering to the Torah, have studied philosophy and are embarrassed by the contradictions between the teachings of philosophy and the literal sense of the Torah," and his main purpose is to expound on Maaseh Bereishit and Maaseh Merkavah, works of Jewish mysticism regarding the theology of Creation from Genesis and the passage of the Chariot from Ezekiel, these being the two main mystical texts in the Tanakh (Hebrew Bible). For the series of Israeli main battle tanks see Merkava. The Hebrew word Merkabah (he מרכבה " Chariot " derived from the consonantal Kabbalah (קַבָּלָה lit "receiving" is a discipline and school of thought discussing the mystical aspect of Judaism. The Book of Ezekiel is a book of the Hebrew Bible (of the Books of the Bible) named after the prophet Ezekiel. See also Old testament, Septuagint, Targum, Peshitta The Tanakh (תַּנַ"ךְ (taˈnax or; also Tenakh or Tenak is This analysis occurs in the third book, and from this perspective, the issues raised in the first two books are there to provide background and a progression in the mystical and philosophical knowledge required to ponder the climax.
The book begins with Maimonides' thesis against anthropomorphism. The Star of David or Shield of David ( Magen David in Hebrew with nikkud or מגן דוד without academically transcribed Māḡēn Dāwīḏ by Aristotle (Greek Aristotélēs) (384 BC – 322 BC was a Greek philosopher a student of Plato and teacher of Alexander the Great. Anthropomorphism is the attribution of uniquely Human characteristics to non-human creatures and beings natural and supernatural phenomena material states and objects In the Bible, one can find many expressions which describe God in human terms, for instance the "hand of God". God is the principal or sole Deity in Religions and other belief systems that worship one deity. Maimonides was strongly against what he believed to be a heresy present in unlearned Jews who then assume God to be corporeal (or even possessing positive characteristics). Heresy is an introduced change to some system of belief especially a religion that conflicts with the previously established canon of that belief
To explain his belief that this is not the case, Maimonides devoted more than 20 chapters in the beginning (and middle) of the first book to analysing Hebrew terms. Each chapter was about a term used to describe God (such as "mighty") and in each case, Maimonides presented a case that the word is a homonym, whereby its usage when describing a physical entity is completely different from when describing God. In linguistics a homonym is one of a group of words that share the same pronunciation but have different meanings and are usually spelled differently This was done by close textual analysis of the word in the Tanach in order to present what Maimonides saw as the proof that according to the Tanach, God is completely incorporeal: "set up the incorporeality of God as a dogma, and placed any person who denied this doctrine upon a level with an idolater; he devoted much of the first part of the "Moreh Nebukim" to the interpretation of the Biblical anthropomorphisms, endeavoring to define the meaning of each and to identify it with some transcendental metaphysical expression. Content analysis (sometimes called textual analysis) is a Methodology in the Social sciences for studying the Content of Communication Some of them are explained by him as perfect homonyms, denoting two or more absolutely distinct things; others, as imperfect homonyms, employed in some instances figuratively and in others homonymously. "
This leads to Maimonides' notion that God cannot be described in any positive terms, but rather only in negative conceptions; the Jewish Encyclopedia notes his view that "As to His essence, the only way to describe it is negatively. For instance, He is not physical, nor bound by time, nor subject to change, etc. These assertions do not involve any incorrect notions or assume any deficiency, while if positive essential attributes are admitted it may be assumed that other things coexisted with Him from eternity. " Unrestrained anthropomorphism and perception of positive attributes is seen as a transgression as serious as idolatry, because both are fundamental errors in the metaphysics of God's role in the universe, and that is the most important aspect of the world. Idolatry is usually defined as Worship of any Cult image, Idea, or object, as opposed to the worship of a monotheistic God.
The first book also contains an analysis of the reasons why philosophy and mysticism are taught late in the Jewish tradition, and only to a few. Maimonides cites many examples of what he sees as the incapability of the masses of understanding these concepts. Thus, approaching them with a mind that is not yet learned in Torah and other Jewish texts can lead to heresy and the transgressions considered the most serious by Maimonides. term " Torah " ( Hebrew: תּוֹרָה "teaching" or "instruction" sometimes translated as "Law" most commonly refers to
The book ends (Chapters 73–76) with Maimonides' protracted exposition and criticism of a number of principles and methods identified with the schools of Jewish Kalam and Islamic Kalam, including the argument for creation ex nihilo and the unity and incorporeality of God. Jewish Kalam was an early-medieval style of Jewish philosophy that evolved in response to the Islamic Kalam, which in turn was a reaction against Aristotelian philosophy Kalām (علم الكلام is the Islamic philosophy of seeking Islamic theological principles through Dialectic. The Latin phrase ex nihilo means "out of nothing" It often appears in conjunction with the concept of Creation, as in creatio ex nihilo While he accepts the conclusions of the Kalam school (because of their consistency with Judaism), he disagrees with their methods and points out many perceived flaws in their arguments: "Maimonides exposes the weakness of these propositions, which he regards as founded not on a basis of positive facts, but on mere fiction. . . Maimonides criticizes especially the tenth proposition of the Mutakallimīn, according to which everything that is conceivable by imagination is admissible: e. g. , that the terres-trial globe should become the all-encompassing sphere, or that this sphere should become the terres-trial globe. "
The book begins with the exposition of the physical structure of the universe, as seen by Maimonides. The world-view asserted in the work is essentially Aristotelian, with a spherical earth in the centre, surrounded by concentric Heavenly Spheres. Aristotle (Greek Aristotélēs) (384 BC – 322 BC was a Greek philosopher a student of Plato and teacher of Alexander the Great. Heavenly Spheres (L'Harmonie des Sphères is an A cappella Choral album by the Studio de Musique Ancienne de Montréal under the direction While Aristotle's view with respect to the eternity of the universe is rejected, Maimonides extensively borrows his proofs of the existence of God and his concepts such as the Prime Mover: "But as Maimonides recognizes the authority of Aristotle in all matters concerning the sublunary world, he proceeds to show that the Biblical account of the creation of the nether world is in perfect accord with Aristotelian views. The cosmological argument is an Argument for the Existence of God or a " First Cause " Explaining its language as allegorical and the terms employed as homonyms, he summarizes the first chapter of Genesis thus: God created the universe by producing on the first day the "reshit," or Intelligences, from which the spheres derived their existence and motion and thus became the source of the existence of the entire universe. "
A novel point is that Maimonides connects the Heavenly Sphere with the concept of an angel: these are seen as the same thing. An angel is a Spiritual Supernatural being found in many Religions Although the nature of angels and the tasks given to them vary from tradition to tradition The Spheres are essentially pure Intelligences who receive spiritual essence from the Prime Mover. This energy overflows from each one to the next and finally reaches earth and the physical domain. While novel in Judaism, this concept of intelligent spheres of existence also appears in Gnostic Christianity as Aeons, having been conceived at least eight hundred years before Maimonides. Gnosticism (γνώσις gnōsis, Knowledge) refers to a diverse Syncretistic Religious movement consisting of various Belief systems The word aeon, also spelled eon or æon, means "age" "forever" or "for Eternity "
This leads into a discussion about the merits of the debate whether the universe is eternal or created. While in the popular mind eternity often simply means existing for a limitless amount of Time, many have used it to refer to a timeless existence altogether outside of As in the first book, Aristotle's theory of the eternity of the universe is seen as the best, philosophically. However, this is because Maimonides considered the proofs that the universe was created to be inferior. He still points out supposed problems with the Aristotelian view and states that, while Aristotle's argument is the best, the possession of Divine Revelation from the Torah is the extra piece of information necessary to decide the matter. Revelation is the act of revealing or disclosing (see etymology or in the theological perception making something obvious and clearly understood through active or passive communication
This is followed by a brief exposition of Creation as outlined in Genesis and theories about the possible end of the world. Eschatology (from the Greek, Eschatos meaning "last" and -logy meaning "the study of" is a part of Theology The second major part of the book is the discussion of the concept of prophecy. Prophecy, generally describes the disclosing of Information that is not known to the Prophet by any ordinary means Maimonides departs from the orthodox view in that he emphasises the intellectual aspect of prophecy. According to this view, in Biblical times, when God still revealed himself through prophecy, it was possible to combine logic and intelligence with a knowledge of God through the tradition (ie. the Written and Oral Torah) in order to achieve a certain level of prophecy. Maimonides outlines 13 levels of prophecy, with that of Moses being the highest and most unimpeded. Moses ( Latin: Moyses,; Greek: grc Mωυσής in both the Septuagint and the New Testament; Arabic: ar موسىٰ Subsequent lower levels remove the prophet as the source, allowing prophecies through increasingly external and indirect factors such as angels and dreams. In Religion, a prophet (or prophetess) is a person who has encountered the Supernatural or the divine and serves as an intermediary An angel is a Spiritual Supernatural being found in many Religions Although the nature of angels and the tasks given to them vary from tradition to tradition Dreams are the images sounds thoughts and feelings experienced while Sleeping, particularly strongly associated with Rapid eye movement sleep. Finally, the language and nature of the prophetic books of the Bible are described.
The beginning of the third book is described as the climax of the whole work. This is the exposition of the mystical passage of the Chariot found in Ezekiel (cf. Kabbalah (קַבָּלָה lit "receiving" is a discipline and school of thought discussing the mystical aspect of Judaism. The Book of Ezekiel is a book of the Hebrew Bible (of the Books of the Bible) named after the prophet Ezekiel. Merkabah mysticism). For the series of Israeli main battle tanks see Merkava. The Hebrew word Merkabah (he מרכבה " Chariot " derived from the consonantal Traditionally, Jewish law viewed this passage as extremely sensitive, and in theory, did not allow it to be taught explicitly at all. Halakha ( הלכה; alternative transliterations include Halocho and Halacha) is the collective body of Jewish Religious law The only way to learn it properly was if a student had enough knowledge and wisdom to be able to interpret their teacher's hints by themselves, in which case the teacher was allowed to teach them indirectly. In practice, however, the mass of detailed rabbinic writings on this subject often crosses the line from hint to detailed teachings.
After justifying this "crossing of the line" from hints to direct instruction, Maimonides explains the basic mystical concepts via the Biblical terms referring to Spheres, elements and Intelligences. In these chapters, however, there is still very little in terms of direct explanation.
This is followed by an analysis of the moral aspects of the universe. Morality (from the Latin la moralitas "manner character proper behavior" has three principal meanings Maimonides deals with the problem of evil (for which people are considered to be responsible because of free will), trials and tests (especially those of Job) as well as other aspects traditionally attached to God in theology, such as providence and omniscience: "Maimonides endeavors to show that evil has no positive existence, but is a privation of a certain capacity and does not proceed from God; when, therefore, evils are mentioned in Scripture as sent by God, the Scriptural expressions must be explained allegorically. In the Philosophy of religion and Theology, the problem of evil is the problem of reconciling the existence of Evil or Suffering in the world The question of free will The Book of Job ( איוב) is one of the books of the Hebrew Bible. Theology is the study of a god or the gods from a religious perspective In Theology, Divine Providence, or simply Providence, is the sovereignty superintendence or agency of God over events in people's lives and throughout Omniscience (ɒm'nɪsɪəns (or Omniscient Point-of-View in writing is the capacity to know everything infinitely or at least everything that can be known about a character Indeed, says Maimonides, all existing evils, with the exception of some which have their origin in the laws of production and destruction and which are rather an expression of God's mercy, since by them the species are perpetuated, are created by men themselves. "
Maimonides then explains his views on the reasons for the 613 mitzvot, the 613 laws contained within the five books of Moses. See also Mitzvah See also Biblical law in Christianity The 613 Mitzvot ("commandments" (also " 613 Mitzvos Maimonides divides these laws into 14 sections - the same as in his Mishneh Torah. The Mishneh Torah ( Hebrew: משנה תורה subtitled Sefer Yad ha-Chazaka (יד החזקה is a code of Jewish Religious law However, he departs from traditional Rabbinic explanations in favour of a more physical/pragmatic approach. Pragmatism generally considered to have originated in the late nineteenth century with Charles Peirce, who first stated the Pragmatic maxim.
Having culminated with the commandments, Maimonides concludes the work with the notion of the perfect and harmonious life, founded on the correct worship of God. The Ten Commandments, or Decalogue, are a list of religious and moral imperatives that according to Judeo-Christian tradition were authored by God and given The possession of a correct philosophy underlying Judaism (as outlined in the Guide) is seen as being an essential aspect in true wisdom.
Many of his ideas were rejected as heretical by many other Jews. Moses Maimonides ( March 30 1135 – December 13 1204) also known as the Rambam, was a Rabbi, Physician, and His Guide was often banned. 
The adversaries of Maimonides' Mishneh Torah declared war against the "Guide. The Mishneh Torah ( Hebrew: משנה תורה subtitled Sefer Yad ha-Chazaka (יד החזקה is a code of Jewish Religious law " His views concerning angels, prophecy, and miracles—and especially his assertion that he would have had no difficulty in reconciling the biblical account of the creation with the doctrine of the eternity of the universe, had the Aristotelian proofs for it been conclusive— provoked the indignation of the orthodox. Maimonides' theory of the unity of souls was declared by some to be an outright denial of the immortality of the soul.
Rabbi Abraham ben David, known as the RaBad, objected to Maimonides' raising the notion of the incorporeality of God as a dogma and therefore appended to Maimonides' formula this brief but emphatic criticism: "Why does he call such persons apostates? Men better and worthier than he have held this view, for which they believe they have found authority in the Scriptures and in a confusing view of the Haggadah. Rabbeinu Abraham ben David was a Provençal rabbi, a great commentator on the Talmud, Sefer Halachot of rabbi Yitzhak Alfasi and Dogma (the plural is either dogmata or dogmas, Greek, plural) is the established Belief or "
By Maimonides' own design, most readers of the Guide have come to the conclusion that his beliefs were generally orthodox, i. e. in line with the thinking of most rabbis of his day. The great majority of Maimonidean scholars, however, hold that this is not correct. Many readers miss Maimonides' statement that he will not openly state any controversial views. He wrote that his Guide was addressed to only a select and educated readership, and that he is proposing ideas that are deliberately concealed from the masses. He writes in the introduction:
A sensible man should not demand of me, or hope that when we mention a subject, we shall make a complete exposition of it.
My object in adopting this arrangement is that the truths should be at one time apparent and at another time concealed. Thus we shall not be in opposition to the Divine Will (from which it is wrong to deviate) which has withheld from the multitude the truths required for the knowledge of God, according to the words, 'The secret of the Lord is with them that fear Him (Psalm 25:14)'
Marvin Fox comments on this:
It is one of the mysteries of our intellectual history that these explicit statements of Maimonides, together with his other extensive instructions on how to read his book, have been so widely ignored. No author could have been more open in informing his readers that they were confronting no ordinary book.
There were a number of reasons for this caution. For one, there was a classical ban against explicitly teaching the secrets of creation. Secondly, many of his ideas were rejected as heretical by many other Jews.
Marvin Fox writes further:
In his introduction to the Guide Maimonides speaks repeatedly of the "secret" doctrine that must be set forth in a way appropriate to its secret character. Rabbinic law, to which Maimonides as a loyal Jew is committed, prohibits any direct, public teaching of the secrets of the Torah. One is permitted to teach these only in private to selected students of proven competence. . .
It would seem that there is no way to write such a book without violating rabbinic law. . . . Yet at times it is urgent to teach a body of sound doctrine to those who require it. . . . The problem is to find a method for writing such book in a way that does not violate Jewish law while conveying its message successfully to those who are properly qualified. . . .
According to Fox, Maimonides carefully assembled the Guide "so as to protect people without a sound scientific and philosophical education from doctrines that they cannot understand and that would only harm them, while making the truths available to students with the proper personal and intellectual preparation. "
Aviezer Ravitzky writes:
Those who upheld a radical interpretation of the secrets of the Guide, from Joseph Caspi and Moses Narboni in the 14th century to Leo Strauss and Shlomo Pines in the 20th, proposed and developed tools and methods for the decoding of the concealed intentions of the Guide. Leo Strauss (September 20 1899 &ndash October 18 1973 was a German -born Jewish-American political philosopher who specialized in the study of classical Shlomo Pines ( August 5, 1908 – January 9, 1990) was a scholar of Jewish and Islamic philosophy Can we already find the roots of this approach in the writings of Samuel ben Judah ibn Tibbon, a few years after the writing of the Guide?. Samuel ben Judah Ibn Tibbon, more commonly known as Samuel ibn Tibbon ( Hebrew: שמואל בן יהודה אבן תבון, Arabic: . . Ibn Tibbon's comments reveal his general approach toward the nature of the contradictions in the Guide: The interpreter need not be troubled by contradiction when one assertion is consistent with the "philosophic view" where as the other is completely satisfactory to "men of religion". Such contradictions are to be expected, and the worthy reader will know the reason for them and the direction they tend to. . . The correct reading of the Guide's chapters should be carried out in two complementary directions: on the one hand, one should distinguish each chapter from the rest, and on the other one should combine different chapters and construct out of them a single topic. Again, on the one hand, one should get to the bottom of the specific subject matter of each chapter, it's specific "innovation", an innovation not necessarily limited to the explicit subject matter of the chapter. On the other hand, one should combine scattered chapters which allude to one single topic so as to reconstruct the full scope of the topic.
The original version of the Guide was written in Arabic. Arabic (ar الْعَرَبيّة (informally ar عَرَبيْ) in terms of the number of speakers is the largest living member of the Semitic language The first Hebrew translation was written by a contemporary of Maimonides, Samuel ben Judah ibn Tibbon (south France). Samuel ben Judah Ibn Tibbon, more commonly known as Samuel ibn Tibbon ( Hebrew: שמואל בן יהודה אבן תבון, Arabic: This Hebrew edition has been used for many centuries.
The first complete English translation was The Guide for the Perplexed, by M. English is a West Germanic language originating in England and is the First language for most people in the United Kingdom, the United States Friedländer, with Mr. Joseph Abrahams and Reverend H. Gollancz, in 1881. It was originally published in a three volume edition with footnotes. In 1904 it was republished in a less expensive one volume edition, without footnotes, with revisions. The second edition is still in use today, sold through Dover Publications. Dover Publications is an American book Publisher founded in 1941 by Hayward Cirker and his wife Blanche Despite the age of this publication it still has a good reputation. 
Another translation to English was made by Chaim Rabin in 1952, also published in an abridged edition. Chaim Menachem Rabin (חיים מנחם רבין 1915 - 1996 was an Israeli professor of Hebrew and Semitic languages. 
The most popular English translation is the two volume set The Guide of the Perplexed, translated by Shlomo Pines, with an extensive introductory essay by Leo Strauss, published in 1963. Shlomo Pines ( August 5, 1908 – January 9, 1990) was a scholar of Jewish and Islamic philosophy Leo Strauss (September 20 1899 &ndash October 18 1973 was a German -born Jewish-American political philosopher who specialized in the study of classical 
A new modern Hebrew translation has been written by Prof. Michael Schwartz, professor emeritus of Tel Aviv University's departments of Jewish philosophy and Arabic language and literature. The meaning of the word professor ( Latin: professor, person who professes to be an expert in some art or science teacher of highest rank) varies Tel Aviv University (TAU אוניברסיטת תל־אביב את"א is Israel 's largest on-site University, located in Tel Aviv. 
Translations exist in Catalan, English, French, German, Hebrew, Spanish and Yiddish.
This article incorporates text from the 1901–1906 Jewish Encyclopedia, a publication now in the public domain. The Jewish Encyclopedia was an Encyclopedia originally published between 1901 and 1906 by Funk and Wagnalls. The public domain is a range of abstract materials &ndash commonly referred to as Intellectual property &ndash which are not owned or controlled by anyone