The book explores the philosophies of two major Jewish thinkers of the Middle Ages, Yehuda Halevi and Moses Maimonides. A careful analysis of Maimonides' approach to Judaism shows that messianism is not the predominant organizing principle that makes Judaism intelligible and significant, Hartman contends. He argues against Halevi's triumphalism and in favor of using the Sinai covenant for evaluating the religious significance of Israel, for this approach gives meaning to Zionists' religious commitments while also empowering secular Israelis to reengage with the Jewish tradition.
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Faced with the profound contemporary polarization between secular and religious in Israel, Hartman, a recipient of two National Jewish Book Awards for previous works (Maimonides: Torah and Philosophic Quest, etc.), proposes a third path: one that allows secular Israelis seeking meaning in their J...| Read Full Review of Israelis and the Jewish Tradi...