October 20, 2012
A Bright Young Light Offers a Roadmap Through the Bible
If you’ve already voted (as I have), or if you plan to set the Tivo to record the third presidential debate, here’s something entirely different to do on Monday night.
Dr. Yoram Hazony, the Jerusalem-based scholar and philosopher, will be talking about his remarkable new book, “The Philosophy of Hebrew Scripture” at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, October 22, 2012, at Stephen S. Wise Temple, 15500 Stephen S. Wise Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90077. Tickets are $12. Call 888-380-WISE (9473) for more information.
Hazony is the founder and provost of the Shalem Center in Jerusalem, and senior fellow in the Department of Philosophy, Political Theory and Religion. All three of these disciplines are in play in “The Philosophy of Hebrew Scripture,” which offers a roadmap through the Tanakh that emphasizes the workings of the human heart and mind rather than miracles and divine revelation.
“To understand the Hebrew Bible, then, is first to recognize it as an artful compendium, whose purpose is not — and never was — to present a single viewpoint,” Hazony explains. “I do not mean by this that there is no center or heart to the tradition of thought encompassed by the Hebrew Scriptures. There is indeed such a center, such a heart. But this center of the biblical teaching is not something handed to us. It must be sought. ...”
I recently reviewed Hazony’s book in these pages, and I am looking forward to a provocative and illuminating evening in the presence of one of the brightest and clearest young lights in the Jewish world even as he guides us through a text that dates back to antiquity and challenges us to discern the meanings that glimmer beneath the surface.
Jonathan Kirsch, author and attorney, is the book editor of The Jewish Journal. He can be reached at email@example.com