… that the perfection, in which man can truly glory, is attained by him when he has acquired - as far as this is possible for man - the knowledge of God, the knowledge of His Providence, and of the manner in which it influences His creatures in their production and continued existence. Having acquired this knowledge he will then be determined always to seek loving-kindness, judgment, and righteousness, and thus to imitate the ways of God.  --  Maimonides

Lech lecha …” – “Go out to yourself … to a place that I will show you.”  With these words HaShem sent Abraham on his journey of discovery.  And his children, the Jewish people, have continued that journey for almost four thousand years.  It is the quest for relationship with HaShem.  It is the quest for the perfection that Maimonides described in his Guide for the Perplexed.

But the words of HaShem’s command are strange.  How do you “go out to yourself?”  Possibly, Maimonides gave the answer when he wrote: “Accordingly it is certainly necessary for whoever wishes to achieve human perfection to train himself at first in the art of logic, then in the mathematical sciences according to the proper order, then in the natural sciences, and after that in the divine science.”  Rambam (=Rabbi Moshe ben Maimon=Maimonides) was suggesting a sequence that starts with ourselves and moves successively out to the totality of HaShem’s creation.  The “place that I will show you” is the realization of our relationship with HaShem.

At a time closer to our own, Einstein said, “Science without religion is lame; religion without science is blind.”  Both of these great minds understood that there was no conflict between Judaism and science.  To the contrary, they saw that the two formed a complementary unity that leads to a greater understanding of that singular Unity that is HaShem.

Over the long journey of the Jewish people, we have wandered over many paths.  We have called these paths religion, science, philosophy and art.  At various times those paths have diverged and then crossed in a way that created conflict.  In our time, we are beginning to recognize that these paths are directed to the same goal; the goal that was defined by Maimonides over eight hundred years ago.

The articles that will appear on this web page will tell the story of two journeys.  These are the journeys of two men, a Rabbi and a physicist.  When their paths crossed at a Chabad learning center, their separate paths turned into a single path directed toward the goal provided by Rambam.  Our journey, over the years, has been one of struggle, but never strife.  It has been one of fierce debate, but always accompanied with passionate respect.  In our transition to a learning team we have been blessed in our individual journeys.

Judaism places an obligation on those who have been blessed with the acquisition of knowledge.  They are obligated to share their experience with those seeking similar knowledge.  That brings us to the purpose of Project Maimonides.  We ask you to please join us in our search to integrate the scientific world of Quantum Theory, Relativity and Cosmology with the Jewish world of TANAKH, Talmud and Kabbalah.  Our goal is to assist those who choose to journey with us in their quest to strengthen their relationship with HaShem through a greater understanding of the unity of HaShem’s creation.

Lech lecha!

Stuart Fickler, Scientist-in-Residence

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