Judah ha-Levi or Judah Halevy (both: jōˈdə häˌlēˈvĪ) [key], c.1075–1141, Jewish rabbi, poet, and philosopher, b. Tudela, Spain. His poems—secular, religious, and nationalist—are filled with a serene and lofty spirit. In his great philosophic work Sefer ha-Kuzari he emphasized the superiority of religious truths, arrived at through intuition, over philosophical and speculative truths, arrived at through logic and reason. In this work he developed a philosophy of history wherein he explains the force of the "divine influence" at work in the world, known first by the patriarchs (Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob), through them by the Jewish people, and ultimately, through the martyrdom of the Jews, by all mankind.
See The Kuzari (tr. by H. Hirschfeld, 1964).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
More on Judah ha-Levi from Infoplease:
See more Encyclopedia articles on: Judaism: Biographies