Western man of the 20th century commonly ascends a pedestal from which he assesses (patronizingly) the efforts of early workers in various disciplines. There is an intrinsic condescension whenever we express wonder at the relatively advanced thinking of the figures of the past. It is somewhat like marvelling that a household pet can presumably understand and therefore respond to our imperious commands.
Moses Maimonides is a formidable figure from the past. Born in Cordova in 1135, his influence was exerted in the Moslem, Jewish, and Christian worlds during this lifetime and for centuries thereafter. He was a prominent Physician—in the service of the Sultan of Egypt; Richard the Lionhearted invited him to be his physician, which Maimonides declined. He was preeminent in theological, philosophical, religious as well as in medical writing. He codified all of the Jewish laws, civil as well as ritual. His "Guide to the Perplexed" is perhaps