Halakhah: Truth or Law?

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  1. Bob Miller says:

    Doesn’t it require a touch of nevuah to be able to interpret basic texts without regard to the positions taken by sages who make up the transmission line of our Mesorah?

    • micha says:

      If you read a source, and it seems compelling to you that he MUST have meant X, whereas the tradition veered toward understanding him as saying Y (maybe calling it X’ is more indicative of reality) do you take him as he seems to obviously say, or not?

      Look again at my example of the Rambam and the mishnah, or the Rambam overthrowing the interpretations of geonim when he was certain they erred.

      Let’s take a more extreme case, which I’m hoping to collect enough sources to make its own blog post… Lets say we get a new manuscript, and find out that the word “lo” was missing from a difficult Rambam. And let’s say acharonim found a way to make sense of the text as we have it, and ruled as per this ammended Rambam. Do we switch rulings?

      Is the Meiri, a rishon whose text was unavailable to acharonim until the mid-20th cent, have the authority of any other rishon? Can we even overturn the Rama to hold like the Me’iri? (And there is a reason why I picked the Rama as an example — but I’ll leave it as a teaser for that future possible post.)

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