Tag Archives: Kabbalah-Hasidut

(Satmar and the Holocaust) Sectarian and Visionary (Va’Yoel Moshe)

Guiding undergraduates through an English language introduction to the Yoel Teitelebaum’s Va’Yoel Moshe presents something of a difficulty. What exactly is this thing? Does it reflect a mainstream of orthodox and ultra-orthodox thinking, or is it something of the outlier, … Continue reading

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(Burning Excrement) צוֹאָה רוֹתֵחַת (Trump & Bannon)

There is a place in Hell and levels there called Boiling Excrement, where there is filth of souls —those who are cleansed of all the filth of this world. They are cleansed and ascend, and that filth remains there; and … Continue reading

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(Elliot Wolfson) Zoharic Philosophical Nocturne (New York State Fair 2016)

Wandering around the rides at the Midway at night at the New York State Fair reading through and getting my head around Elliot Wolfson’s excellent 2014 phenomenological dive into modern Jewish philosophy. I’ll soon post more about Giving Beyond the … Continue reading

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(Jewish Mysticism) The Non-Existence of Jewish Ethics (Joseph Dan)

Is there such a thing as Jewish ethics? Does it even exist? What if anything do Jewish mysticism and Jewish ethics have to do with each other? Does the one complement or submerge the other? In search of answers to … Continue reading

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(Moshe Chayyim Luzzatto) Anthroposophy (The Way of God)

For years on the ten days between Rosh Ha’Shanah and Yom Kippur, I read Moshe Chayyim Luzzatos’ classic ethical treatise, Path of the Just (Mesilat Ha’Yesharim). This year I picked up the Hebrew-English edition of The Way of God (Derekh … Continue reading

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Apples (Zohar)

On a bright day with the sun caught in the leaves, it makes perfect sense that apple orchard is a mystical symbol in the Zohar.

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Decadent Religion in the Digital Age (Shulem Deen)

Happy to have gotten around to All Who Go Do Not Return, Shulem Deen’s memoir about leaving the Skever Hasidic community for the great big world. The importance of this memoir has many aspects, starting with the obvious human interest of … Continue reading

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