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Maimonides 13 Foundations


Rabbi Jonathan Blass

15 Tevet 5764
I have searched for some time to find belief of the Jewish faith, not customs. I found the 13 foundations of Maimonides. Most important question is: Maimonides makes references "to give to every one according to his ways," and "gives reward to one who obeys the commandments". In the translation I am reading it does not mention of G-d’s love or compassion. In the Torah, which I read, reference to love to and from G-d is mentioned a number of occasions and Compassion mentioned in Deuteronomy three. Am I to understand the the Foundations are "a" statement of belief and that it is not the total understanding. Is my translation not translating words that could or do translate to love/compassion or that it is not able to translate a word that would infer, but not be the same thing as our "love" or "compassion"?
Maimonides thirteen principles do not refer to any of the individual attributes through which G-d administers the world. That G-d administers the world and judges all is a principle, but through what mixture of compassion, of exacting justice, and of absolute charity is not. The principles define as a non-believer someone who rejects them. Someone who believes that G-d has abandoned the world and does not administer justice is a non-believer. Someone who believes that G-d judges the world and will bring Israel's redemption accepts that G-d rules thru compassion as well, although he may not be concerned with the relative weight of each of these elements.
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