Saturday, December 12, 2015

Sources Indicating That Chazal Did Not Possess Perfect Scientific Knowledge:
Click Here

(a source list of rishonim, acharonim, and selected Talmudic-era passages, with quotations and translations)


Observer from Afar said...

Today is Sunday, February 7, 2010 and I am commenting on a blog entry that will be published on Sunday, Sunday, December 12, 2010. Hmmm ... there must indeed be yeridos hadoros!

Mevakesh Emess said...

Yeridas HaDoros can be understood in 2 ways:
Either the intellect of the previous generations was more powerful than ours today, bigger brains etc. I personally have a hard time accepting this.
Or the the Yeridas HaDoros is based on the fact that the Messora of the previous generation was more pristine than ours.
This would reduce the Yeridas Hadoros concept to investigating the continuity of the Messora from Matan Tora all the way to today.
If you look at the Talmud Bavli you will have reservations about this unbroken link. Most times the opinion of the historically later Rav Ashi is followed in Halacha, as if the earlier opinions do not count for much.Why is this so if the Messora was more pristine earlier on?
Moreover, where did Rav Ashi, hundreds of years after the Mishna was concluded, receive his Messora from?
The Yerushalmi many times has a different Messora than the Bavli.
The Yerushalmi was concluded earlier and was written on the Mishna's home ground, in Israel proper. Why are we following the Bavli's Messora & not the Yerushalmi's? Why are there two such diverging Messoras to explain the plain wording of the Mishna, only a few years after the conclusion of the Mishna?

Yochanan said...

Are you aware of your "time traveling"? Your recent posts are dated December 2015.

DES said...


It's a blog post, so it needs to be post-dated.

Seriously, though, the reason for the 2015 date is to keep the "Sources Indicating..." post, which is the most popular on this blog (and, in my opinion, the most important) at the top of the blog home page. Kind of a crude way of doing it, but it works.

Udder Rubber said...

Hello DES, I like your blog, but that's not really what I came here for. (I landed here via a Google search.) I see that you have posted excerpts from "Pri Chadash" here and I'd like to know what your source is. That is, not who wrote it, but where you got the Hebrew text in electronic form. I would like to get the (full) text of the Pri Chadash on Orach Chayyim s. 427 and 428 in electronic form. Can you point me anywhere useful?

DES said...

Hi Udder Rubber, I don't remember for sure, but in all likelihood I typed the Pri Chadash myself (only the section shown on the blog). You can try, but if you're looking for a searchable/editable format, that's not likely to help. Other than that, I have no suggestions, unless Bar Ilan has digitized the Pri Chadash.

Udder Rubber said...

Thanks for replying DES. This is only peripheral to my own interest in the subject matter, but there is an interesting contrast between the tables of calendric kviyyot appended to Tur, Orach Chayyim ch 428 and the list of Kviyyot published by the Pri Chadash in his commentary to the same chapter of the Shulchan Aruch of Yosef Caro.

The table published in the Tur goes up to the (Jewish) year 6042 (year 19 of Jewish Metonic-cycle 318), whereas the table in Pri Chadash, who was much later and corrected many errors in the table in the Tur, stops at the year 6000.

(The table in the Tur divides Metonic cycles into so-called 'repeating' groups of 13. Thirteen Metonic cycles (247 years) is called the 'iggul' of Rabenu Nachshon Gaon. That calendar 'repetition,' apparently assumed by the Tur to be consistent, is only approximate and, as the Pri Chadash pointed out, should not be relied upon as it often fails. It is a calendric curiosity, nothing more, and that grouping of Metonic cycles was abandoned and debunked by the Pri Chadash.)

It may have been nothing more than a matter of tabular symmetry that is behind the 6042 cut-off year in the tables in the Tur. On the other hand, it might just point to a generational difference in Jewish eschatological ideas. Jewish mythology about the year 6000 is similar to the Mayan calendar doomsday myth that had some people thinking several years ago that the world would end at the end of the (Gregorian) year 2012.

David Ohsie said...

Dear DES, I'm leveraging your website in some posts on Rationalist Judaism on the authenticity of Rabbeinu Avraham's Discourse and I credit you there. Thanks again for the work in putting this together. --David Ohsie

DES said...

Glad it's being used. Thanks for telling me.

Unknown said...

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