Maimonides was the pre-eminent champion of Jewish rationalism, and The Guide of the Perplexed can be seen as one of the most significant examples of medieval Jewish philosophy. He met the needs of a Jewish culture that cherished secular learning through science and ancient philosophy, yet also held firmly to religious tradition. As a faithful Jew, Maimonides was convinced that no philosophic theory could provide a rational account of the universe as a whole. Surrounded by the philosophical and scientific works of Islamic scholars such as Avicenna and Averroes, Maimonides was shaped by an intellectual climate that privileged reason and rational thinking. Within this context, Maimonides was eager to bring his own Jewish religious tradition in line with contemporary thinking.