My Jewish Learning

Thinkers & Thought Quiz

A wide cast of intellectuals devoted their lives to defining what Judaism meant to them, and what it should mean to others. How much do you know about these thinkers and their philosophies?



Question 1. Who was voted the greatest British Jew of all time by the London Jewish Chronicle in 2005?
 Hermann Adler
 Sir Jonathan Sacks
 Louis Jacobs
 Benjamin Disraeli

 

Question 2. Which of the following philosophers was about to convert to Christianity, but decided to attend synagogue before he left Judaism, and was so inspired by the Yom Kippur service he attended, that he ultimately became a strong advocate of Judaism for Jews, and Christianity for Christians?
 Hermann Cohen
 Franz Rosenzweig
 E.E. Dessler
 Martin Buber

 

Question 3. When did Jewish thinkers begin to try to prove the existence of God?
 In the Second Temple period
 In the Talmud
 In the Middle Ages
 After the Enlightenment

 

Question 4. Hellenistic Jewish literature is dominated by which figure?
 Philo
 Judah Maccabee
 Rabbi Akiba
 Caesar

 

Question 5. How does Judah Halevi distinguish the Jewish revelation story from Islam and Christianity's stories of revelation?
 Judaism doesn't believe in a literal revelation
 Judaism's revelation was on a mountain
 Judaism's was revealed to 600,000 people and not one person
 None of the above

 

Question 6. When Joseph Soloveitchik moved to the United States, he became Chief Rabbi of the Orthodox community in what city?
 Boston
 New York
 Philadelphia
 Baltimore

 

Question 7. Which of these statements about Jewish philosophy is true?
 There is not a lot of debate; most issues are very straightforward and authorities are unified
 It has historically been more important than Jewish practice (halakhah)
 Throughout history, it developed in dialogue with surrounding cultures
 Though there is a lot of debate, all agree that the ultimate reward awaits in the World to Come

 

Question 8. True or False: Medieval Jewish Philosophers were averse to ever citing the work or theories of non-Jewish philosophers.
 True
 False

 

Question 9. According to E. E. Dessler the best way to understand God is to
 Do works of lovingkindness
 Study Torah
 Work for a Jewish organization
 Fast and immerse oneself in Kabbalah

 

Question 10. Which of these philosophers was NOT Spanish?
 Maimonides
 Saadiah Gaon
 Judah Halevi
 Bahya Ibn Pakudah