Many times the Sages describe natural phenomena with which they could not possibly have had a personal acquaintance. The Talmud explains their amazing knowledge with this verse, ‘The secret of Hashem is for [i.e. revealed to] those who fear Him.’ (R. Avrohom Chaim Feuer, Tehillim (ArtScroll/Mesorah 1977) vol. I p. 313)
In my various writings, I have extensively explored the view that the Sages's knowledge of the natural world was based simply on common beliefs rather than supernatural sources. But what about the concept of Sod Hashem Liyreyav, which is used by the Gemara to mean that the Sages possessed supernatural knowledge of the natural world?
I am pleased to announce the publication of a new monograph which analyzes the usage of this principle in the Talmud, and its subsequent interpretation and employment by the Rishonim, Acharonim, and contemporary Orthodox figures. The results are extremely illuminating for anyone interested in the decline of rationalism, and especially for anyone seeking to understand the stance of the Charedi Gedolim regarding Chazal's knowledge of science.
The monograph can be downloaded after making a donation via PayPal. The recommended donation for readers of this website is $5, but if you have gained much from the Rationalist Judaism enterprise and would you would like to take this opportunity to express your appreciation with a larger donation, it would be gratefully appreciated.
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