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Does Judaism Condone Violence?Holiness and Ethics in the Jewish Tradition$
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Alan L. Mittleman

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780691174235

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691174235.001.0001

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Holiness and Ethics

Holiness and Ethics

Chapter:
(p.89) Chapter Two Holiness and Ethics
Source:
Does Judaism Condone Violence?
Author(s):

Alan L. Mittleman

Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691174235.003.0003

This chapter explores the connection between holiness and ethics or between holiness and goodness. Drawing on a theory of holiness in Judaism, it considers how holiness relates to other values, including moral ones, and whether holiness is more primordial or primitive than ethics. The discussion is anchored on two texts: the first from the Book of Leviticus, and the second from the modern Jewish thinker, Abraham Joshua Heschel. The chapter argues that holiness and morality are equally primordial, equally original to the human condition, and goes on to propose a natural history of holiness in which the human experiences of love and awe, of goodness and holiness arise together against man's evolutionary background as a social primate. It also examines the concepts of primordial morality, natural morality, ethical naturalism, and moral realism before concluding with an analysis of intuition in relation to the good, the right, and the holy.

Keywords:   holiness, ethics, goodness, Abraham Joshua Heschel, morality, Judaism, primordial morality, natural morality, moral realism, intuition

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