The Way of G-d / Derech Hashem is a major respected work by Rabbi Moshe Chaim Luzzatto.
Sam is using the version translated and annotated by Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan in these classes.

Lesson One covers pg(s) 13-27

The RaMCHaL

Rabbi Moshe Chaim Luzzatto known as the RaMCHal, is best known for a classical work tittle: “Path for the Just” (Mesilas Yesharim).

The RaMCHal was born in Padua, Italy, in the year 1707. In 1735 he settled in Amsterdam and became a gem cutter. Like many other great men of his age, Rabbi Luzzatto longed for the Holy Land, and finally, in 1743, he realized his goal, settling in Acco. He was not to enjoy a long stay there, however, and on 26 Iyar, 5506 (May 16, 1746), at the age of 39, he was killed by a plaque. He was buried in Tiberias, next to Rabbi Akiva.

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