The object of this treatise is to enlighten a religious
man who has been trained to believe in the truth of our
holy Law [the Torah], who conscientiously fulfills his moral
and religious duties, and at the same time has been successful
in his philosophical studies.
Human reason has impelled him to abide within its sphere;
and, on the other hand, he is disturbed by the literal interpretation
of the Law, and by the ideas formed by himself or received
from others. . . . Hence he is lost in perplexity and anxiety.
If he be guided solely by reason, and renounce his previous
views which are based on those expressions, he would consider
that he had rejected the fundamental principles of the Law;
and even if he retain the opinions which were derived from
those expressions, and if, instead of following his reason,
he abandon its guidance altogether, he would still feel
that his religious convictions had suffered loss and injury.
He would then be left with those errors which give rise
to fear and anxiety, constant grief and great perplexity.