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Is Religion Rational?

Does religion make sense? Depending on your disposition, this might be the least, or most, important question to ask about religious life in the contemporary age. As with many vulnerable areas of our faith, our attitude towards this question is a story in its own right. This month, we explore the question of rationalism and religion, as we wonder if religion can or should make sense, as well as what the collective set of beliefs that we have around this question might tell us about the story of religion in contemporary society.

Central Questions

  •  Religion and Rationalism: Can, or should, we think of religion as rational?
  •  Before and After Rationalism: What motivates religious life in a world before and after rationalist inquiry?
  • Philosophy and the Torah: What is the relationship between philosophical systems and the Torah?

EPISODES

In this episode of the 18Forty Podcast, we talk to Zohar Atkins, Rabbi and philosopher, about the role that philosophy - particularly rationalist philosophy - plays in Judaism.
In this episode of the 18Forty Podcast, we talk to an anonymous guest about the anxieties he experienced in a hyper rational approach to Judaism.
In this episode of the 18Forty Podcast, we talk to Simi Peters - author and teacher - about Jewish faith and postmodernism.
In this episode of the 18Forty Podcast, we talk to Samuel Lebens - philosophy professor and author - about the interaction of Judaism with analytic philosophy and mysticism.
In this episode of the 18Forty Podcast, we talk to author Shmuel Phillips about the upsides and downsides of approaching Judaism rationally.
In this episode of the 18Forty Podcast, we talk to Jeff Bloom about the assumptions that Orthodox Judaism makes about ideology, and how we ground our faith even if we don’t have irrefutable evidence.
In this episode of the 18Forty Podcast, we talk to Rabbi Steven Gotlib, a fellow at Beit Midrash Zichron Dov and Rabbinic Educator at the Village Shul, about the relationship between first principles and how we are to live.
In this episode of the 18Forty Podcast, we talk to Dr. Malka Simkovich, Crown-Ryan Chair of Jewish Studies and director of the Catholic-Jewish Studies program at Catholic Theological Union in Chicago, about Second Temple Judaism and how it can help us understand what it means to be a Jew in our own time.
In this episode of the 18Forty Podcast, we talk to Rabbi Shalom Carmy—philosophy and Jewish-studies professor at Yeshiva University and Editor Emeritus of Tradition—about how he grounds his faith.

ARTICLES

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