Defending the Kuzari V


Michael Hoffman


I read that article which Micah wrote. In it he said:

Judaism neither stands on proof nor ought to be about proof. (In this approach. Obviously R' Saadia Gaon et al disagreed.) Rather, it stands on our having a relationship with Hashem and His Torah.”

Chovos Halvavos has an explicit rejection of Micha’s argument, that we accept Judaic ideas “because [they are] our heritage” and not because of philosophical proof. He says (using Feldheim translation):

The 2nd level is the acknowledgement of Gods unity with the heart and the tongue based on what one has received from tradition, because he believes the person from whom he ahs received it. However, one does not grasp at this level, the true meaning of the subject on the strength of one’s own intellect and understanding; rather, one is like a blind man who is led by one who can see. It may happen that one receives the tradition from someone who likewise, knows it only from tradition. That would resemble a string of blind men, each of whom has his hand on the shoulder of the one in front of him, until the file reaches a person endowed with sight, who is at their head and guides them. Should this guide of theirs fail them and neglect to watch over them carefully, or if one of them should stumble or suffer an accident, then all of them would be affected: they would all stray from the path and either fall into a pit or a ditch or blunder into an obstacle that would prevent them from continuing.”

This something Micah should consider. A lot of what is wrong with Judaism is people relying on blind faith and forming “a string of blind men”. Sadly, Micah is endorsing this view by telling his readers to accept Judaism because it is their heritage (i.e., your parent's believed it) rather then because it makes sense.