David Hartman has always transformed the way his students look at their Jewish worldview by his power to ask hard and personal questions. He always called himself the Socratic philosopher, the gadfly whose mission is to force us to reexamine the apparently banal Jewish aphorisms and the most mundane halakhic minutae. In the earliest informal classes he offered in his home on Friday mornings in the 1970s we used to read Pirkei Avot and listen to him ask questions such as whether the rabbinic sayings reflected a Freudian or an existentialist approach to life. He never tried to compel us to accept a systematic view, but piecemeal he invited us to rethink the classic text in a new frame of reference. I remember in particular his exposition of the school of Hillel as the peaceseekers whose pluralist notion of truth set the tone for the whole innovation of rabbinic culture over biblical-prophetic culture—the value of disagreement preserved and enhanced and negotiated. In halakhic contexts, even seemingly trivial ones like whether to use one’s oil for the Sabbath or the Hanukkah lamp, his most insistent question was Maimonidean—what kind of religious personality is to be fostered by ruling one way or the other on ritual matters.