Greek Thought and How it Got Mislabeled
The general perception about this matter is skewed. The problem is most people lump everything under the label of Hellenism, but this line of thinking is incorrect. Hellenism is Anti-Torah Judaism. It teaches to break the Mitzvot, Halachot and Minhagim. Hellenism was the core of Greek Thought and Culture. But we have to understand how things progressed and developed over time with Greek Philosophy after that.
Many Schools of Thoughts emerged, and we have to remember that Philosophy has absolutely nothing to do with Mystcism or Religion, so technically philosophy does not pertain to Mitzvot or Halachot, what happened was... the philosophers all took a very great interest in Kabbalah, it was the primary method in demand... in doing so they developed a new intellectual approach to empiricism. Due to the fact that technically Kabbalah is a science, their advancements had developed in a manner that aligned with Nature, we can now see why our Holy Sages such as Rambam, Rabbi Bachya ben Pekudah, Rabban Gamliel, etc. took such a great interest in the Greek philosophies. Now we have to ask ourselves why would some of the greatest Jewish Sages ever known be studying and even using Greek Philosophy to teach anything at all.
Greek Thought had already moved away from Hellenism and there were many different Schools of Thought that were around, but many of these great minds have been mislabeled Hellenists, and the term has been used to identify often with Greek Philosophy, the issue was that none of these folks were teaching Hellenism at all. When we really do an analysis of the teachings Philo, and the concepts of the other philosophers, we are not reviewing Hellenism, we are reviewing concepts that originated in the Kabbalist movements called the Ma'aseh Bereshit and Ma'aseh Merkavah. If one looks further one will find that these concepts also resemble movements like Essenic Kabbalah and Pharisaic Kabbalah. In fact the concepts that are found in the Sefer Yetzirah, a Kabbalistic text, which is older than the Greek philosophers. So, these particular Greek philosophers merely provide a new intellectual approaches to empiricism.
When we look closely at Philo, Aristotle, Pythagoras, Plato, etc... what we find is not at all an Anti-Torah philosophy, rather a Philosophy that upheld and revered the Torah... it became compatible with Torah, or aligned with Torah rather. This is why Rambam, Rabbi Bachya ben Pekudah, Rabban Gamiel, etc. strove to use these Greek philosopher's teachings as a means to cloak Kabbalah. Jewish Mysticism was thus concealed and clothed the teachings of Kabbalah in the garments of Philosophy.
The Saducees leaned more towards true Hellenism. They rejected the Prophets and the Writings, they rejected the Oral Torah, their interpretations of Torah was really against Torah, and they were aristocratic tyrants, it is noted that they were very violent, and were elitists that only cared about themselves. Moreover, they were in bed with Pagan Rome. Now, a close analysis tells us that the Saducees were definitely closer to Hellenism. Notice how the Pharisees, Essenes and the Netzarim all rejected the Saducees as heretics. Why? Hellenism.
Also, one of the most influential and famous Talmudic Sages, Tana Rabban Gamliel (grandson of Hillel) was Paul of Tarsus's Rabbi. In the Talmud it is recorded that Rabban Gamliel was permitted to study the Greek Wisdom and Language, in order to teach his students, for the purpose of dissemination of Torah Judaism in the Greek speaking nations and in order to learn how to deal with the Greeks at their level, especially in dealing with the governments and societies. They had to learn Greek Thought. Rabban Gamliel had a 1,000 students, one of which was Paul of Tarsus, in his Yeshivah. 500 of them studied Greek Thought and Philosophy, after they had reached a certain level that was acceptable. This practice was expressly forbidden, yet with one exception to this rule for Rabban Gamliel and his Yeshivah.
Now, we cannot say this is all coincidence, nope... Paul was a student of this Talmudic Sage, this is Hishgochoh Protis. It becomes clear now why and how Paul's writings are virtually identical to the teachings and concepts of Rabban Gamliel, Kabbalah and Chasidut... and why and how the very same material we find in Paul's writings, is the very same material we find in the Talmud, Zohar, Midrash, and the teachings of the Sages. Now we see why this all lines up with Rambam, Rabbi Bachya ben Pekudah, The Arizal, Ramchal, Ba'al HaSulam, and the like... what has been mislabeled Hellenism, is really something that existed long before, and it originated at Sinai, and further back to Abraham and friends.