Emanation and the Philosophy of Language
An Introduction to Joseph ben Abraham Giqatilla
Rabbi Joseph ben Abraham Giqatilla (1248 – c. 1325) is considered the most representative figure of a stream of Jewish mysticism devoted in particular to the investigation of the mysteries of the divine names. Giqatilla believes that any appellative which Scripture attributes to God represents the very matrix of the universe. The present monograph intends to provide a comprehensive illustration of his thought, his Rabbinical education, and his relationship with other prominent qabbalists in thirteenth-century Spain—Abraham Abulafia and Moshe de Leon. Most of the previous scholarship shares the problematic assumption that there would be a dramatic distinction between an 'early' and 'later' Giqatilla and that this would have reverberated into form, style, and content. On the contrary, the present monograph maintains the fundamental assumption that specific differences between the young and older Giqatilla shall not rule out the possibility of reading his entire speculation in a unitary, evolutionary perspective. Therefore, it argues that here are three periods in Giqatilla's speculation—a 'philosophical' one, a 'theosophical' one, and a 'theological-political' one.
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