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: Medieval Jewish Philosophers were averse to ever citing the work or theories of non-Jewish philosophers.
 True
 False

 

Question 2. Which of the following philosophers was about to convert to Christianity, but decided to attend synagogue before he left Judaism, and was so inspired by the Yom Kippur service he attended, that he ultimately became a strong advocate of Judaism for Jews, and Christianity for Christians?
 Hermann Cohen
 Franz Rosenzweig
 E.E. Dessler
 Martin Buber

 

Question 3. 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 4. 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 5. Which of these statements about Jewish philosophy is true?
 There is not a lot of debate; most issues are very straightforward and authorities are unified
 It has historically been more important than Jewish practice (halakhah)
 Throughout history, it developed in dialogue with surrounding cultures
 Though there is a lot of debate, all agree that the ultimate reward awaits in the World to Come

 

Question 6. Solomon Ibn Adret is more commonly known as
 Rashba
 Rambam
 Rashi
 Saadiah Gaon

 

Question 7. Hellenistic Jewish literature is dominated by which figure?
 Philo
 Judah Maccabee
 Rabbi Akiba
 Caesar

 

Question 8. 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 9. Which of these Jewish thinkers lived most recently?
 Philo
 Maimonides
 A.J. Heschel
 Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson

 

Question 10. True or false: Kabbalists thought that only a handful of worthy students should receive the secrets of the Law.
 True
 False