Sefer ha-Khuzari

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Judah Hallevi’s Kitab al Khazari translated by Hartwig Hirschfeld – this work was originally written in Arabic.

(Kitab al-Ḥujjah wal-Dalil fi Nuṣr al-Din al-Dhalil, كتاب الحجة و الدليل في نصرة الدين الذليل (known in the Hebrew translation of Judah ibn Tibbon by the title Sefer ha-Kuzari)

A classic of  Medieval Jewish philosophy,  set in a legendary (but historical) central Asian kingdom.

Framed as a dialog between the king of the Khazars,  a Central Asian kingdom, and a Rabbi,  the Khazari is an exposition of  late medieval Jewish philosophy.  Legend has it that the king of the Khazars held a symposium to decide whether his people should convert to Judaism, Christianity or Islam.  This book is an account of  the Jewish side of this debate.

Rabbi Judah Ha-Levi, the author, was born about 1080 C.E. in Muslim-controlled area of southern Spain. This was a bright spot in the history of Jewish-Muslim relations, when Jewish communities prospered under a tolerant Islamic state, and scholarship flourished.

He studied the Talmud and Kabbalah, wrote secular poetry, and was fluent both in Hebrew and Arabic.  Midlife he had an awakening which led him to write on more spiritual themes, and the resulting body of work is considered some of the best post-Biblical Jewish poetry  (read more here).

Compatible with iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad

Category: Books
Released: March 30, 2010
Publisher: Indianic, LLC
Price: Free (get app)

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