My Jewish Learning

Thinkers & Thought Quiz

A wide cast of intellectuals devoted their lives to defining what Judaism meant to them, and what it should mean to others. How much do you know about these thinkers and their philosophies?

Question 1. True or false: Kabbalists thought that only a handful of worthy students should receive the secrets of the Law.


Question 2. In religious existentialism the believer adopts monotheism because
 He has seen absolute proof of a single God
 Through a leap of faith
 He understands that he is just a speck in the vastness of the universe
 He has been told to at Sunday school


Question 3. A main goal of medieval Jewish thinkers was to reconcile Jewish thought with what philosophy?


Question 4. When did Jewish thinkers begin to try to prove the existence of God?
 In the Second Temple period
 In the Talmud
 In the Middle Ages
 After the Enlightenment


Question 5. What is rationalism?
 Rationalism is the attitude in which religious faith has to justify itself at the bar of reason before it can be accepted.
 Rationalism is the attitude that logic is at the base of all of Godís actions.
 Rationalism is the attitude in which rational actions are examined and proved to be ultimately hypocritical.
 Rationalism is the intensely personal philosophy in which the individual responds not to a philosophical system, which she surveys from the outside, but to what is true for her.


Question 6. According to E. E. Dessler the best way to understand God is to
 Do works of lovingkindness
 Study Torah
 Work for a Jewish organization
 Fast and immerse oneself in Kabbalah


Question 7. Who wrote Wars of the Lord?


Question 8. Which Jewish philosopher was sometimes known as the rabbi of Theresienstadt?
 Martin Buber
 Abraham Joshua Heschel
 Menachem Mendel Schneerson
 Leo Baeck


Question 9. Which of these statements is NOT one of Maimonides' 13 Principles of Faith?
 God has no physical body
 The Messiah will redeem Israel
 The dead will be resurrected
 Jews must live in the Land of Israel


Question 10. True or false: Aristotle is never mentioned in the Talmud.