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The Messianic Idea in Judaism: And Other Essays on Jewish Spirituality [NOOK Book]

Overview

Gershom Scholem was the master builder of historical studies of the Kabbalah. When he began to work on this neglected field, the few who studied these texts were either amateurs who were looking for occult wisdom, or old-style Kabbalists who were seeking guidance on their spiritual journeys. His work broke with the outlook of the scholars of the previous century in Judaica—die Wissenschaft des Judentums, the Science of Judaism—whose orientation he rejected, calling their “disregard for the most vital aspects of ...
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The Messianic Idea in Judaism: And Other Essays on Jewish Spirituality

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Overview

Gershom Scholem was the master builder of historical studies of the Kabbalah. When he began to work on this neglected field, the few who studied these texts were either amateurs who were looking for occult wisdom, or old-style Kabbalists who were seeking guidance on their spiritual journeys. His work broke with the outlook of the scholars of the previous century in Judaica—die Wissenschaft des Judentums, the Science of Judaism—whose orientation he rejected, calling their “disregard for the most vital aspects of the Jewish people as a collective entity: a form of “censorship of the Jewish past.” The major founders of modern Jewish historical studies in the nineteenth century, Leopold Zunz and Abraham Geiger, had ignored the Kabbalah; it did not fit into their account of the Jewish religion as rational and worthy of respect by “enlightened” minds. The only exception was the historian Heinrich Graetz. He had paid substantial attention to its texts and to their most explosive exponent, the false Messiah Sabbatai Zevi, but Graetz had depicted the Kabbalah and all that flowed from it as an unworthy revolt from the underground of Jewish life against its reasonable, law-abiding, and learned mainstream. Scholem conducted a continuing polemic with Zunz, Geiger, and Graetz by bringing into view a Jewish past more varied, more vital, and more interesting than any idealized portrait could reveal.
from the Foreword by Arthur Hertzberg, 1995
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Editorial Reviews

Jewish Book World
A new forward by Arthur Hertberg focuses on Scholem's genius in presenting messianism in historical context.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780307789082
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 11/23/2011
  • Sold by: Random House
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 408
  • Sales rank: 1,237,493
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

Gershom Scholem was a professor of Jewish mysticism at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem until his death in 1982. Among his most important works are Major Trends in Jewish Mysticism, The Messianic Idea in Judaism, On the Kabbalah and Its Symbolism, On the Mystical Shape of the Godhead, and editor of Zohar, the Book of Splendor: Basic Readings from the Kabbalah.
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Table of Contents

Foreword
Preface
Toward an Understanding of the Messianic Idea in Judaism 1
The Messianic Idea in Kabbalism 37
The Crisis of Tradition in Jewish Messianism 49
Redemption Through Sin 78
The Crypto-Jewish Sect of the Donmeh (Sabbatians) in Turkey 142
A Sabbatian Will from New York 167
The Neutralization of the Messianic Element in Early Hasidism 176
Devekut, or Communion with God 203
Martin Buber's Interpretation of Hasidism 228
The Tradition of the Thirty-Six Hidden Just Men 251
The Star of David: History of a Symbol 257
Revelation and Tradition as Religious Categories in Judaism 282
The Science of Judaism - Then and Now 304
At the Completion of Buber's Translation of the Bible 314
On the 1930 Edition of Rosenzweig's Star of Redemption 320
The Politics of Mysticism: Isaac Breuer's New Kuzari 325
The Golem of Prague and the Golem of Rehovot 335
Notes 341
Sources and Acknowledgments 365
Index 367
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