Tales of the Holy Mysticat: Jewish Wisdom Stories by a Feline Mystic

Tales of the Holy Mysticat: Jewish Wisdom Stories by a Feline Mystic

by Rachel Adler
Tales of the Holy Mysticat: Jewish Wisdom Stories by a Feline Mystic

Tales of the Holy Mysticat: Jewish Wisdom Stories by a Feline Mystic

by Rachel Adler


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An Unexpected Teacher, When Rabbi Rachel Adler, esteemed feminist theologian, decided her new apartment needed a cat, she searched the local shelters. One gaunt feline caught her eye. Despite being caged, he radiated the spiritual beauty of face and dignity of bearing that mark a great soul. As he settled into his new home-purring at the Hebrew volumes in Adler's library, nodding attentively to the mezzuzot on the doorposts, and engaging in soulful meditation three times each day-Adler discerned that he was no ordinary kitty. He was an old soul with many lifetimes of Jewish wisdom to impart, reincarnated to a higher level in the form of a gray tabby-the Holy Mysticat. This engaging book is a guide to Jewish literacy, using the behaviors of Adler's most peculiar cat to lead readers on a journey through thousands of years of Jewish thought, history, and practices. A collection of whimsical stories, interspersed with cleverly drawn black-and-white illustrations, Tales of the Holy Mysticat provides unique insights into Jewish mysticism by one of our generation's most profoundly creative scholars- portrayed through the life of her cat. Just as the Holy Mysticat became Adler's teacher, so too can the Holy Mysticat teach us all.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780976305019
Publisher: Banot Press
Publication date: 10/06/2020
Pages: 168
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

Rachel Adler is the David Ellenson Professor of Modern Jewish Thought at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, Los Angeles campus. She is the author of Engendering Judaism^ the first book by a female theologian to win a National Jewish Book Award for Jewish Thought.

Table of Contents

Preface: Why I Wrote This Book vii

Acknowledgments xi

Introduction: What You Need to Know If You Are Not a Kabbalist or Talmudist xiii

1 The Mysticat Arrives 1

2 Night, Part I 5

3 Night, Part II 6

4 Shevirat Ha-Kelim 9

5 Tefillin 10

6 The Canine Hora 15

7 Preparing for Shabbat 18

8 Commune in Your Hearts (Imru B'levavchem): A Tale of Meditation 19

9 The Mysticat and the Mocker 21

10 Postscript to the Mysticat and the Mocker 24

11 The Mysticat as Thwarted Writer 25

12 A Visit to the Vet 28

13 Memories of a World Relinquished 30

14 The Holy Mysticat's Inconsistent Acosmism 32

15 A Birthday Present 34

16 The Blessing of Renewed Life: A Yamim Noraim Tale 35

17 Mysticat Miracles 39

18 A Winter's Mysticat Tale 40

19 Apology to the Holy Mysticat 42

20 Bikkur Cholim Kitty 44

21 Further Adventures of the Bikkur Cholim Kitty 46

22 Divine Providence 48

23 A Birthday Tradition 51

24 The Mysticat Offended 52

25 No Food, No Torah (Im Ain Kemach, Am Torah) 54

26 Incommunicado 57

27 Bed Mice 60

28 The Mystery of Pesach 63

29 The Mysticat Ponders the Month of Tammuz 65

30 Picky Picky 67

31 The Mysticat's Churban Bayyit 70

32 The Mysticat in Exile 74

33 Flunking Exile 76

34 The Mysticat's Error 79

35 The Mysticat Comes Home 81

36 Eyes Closed, Soul Wide Open 84

Appendix A The Cycle of the Jewish Year 89

Appendix B What Is Kabbalah? 103

Appendix C Jewish Perspectives on Sacred Texts 107

Appendix D Anatomy of the Talmud 111

Appendix E What Is Midrash? 115

Appendix F What Is Halakhah and Why Do Jews Need It? 117

Appendix G What Are Codes? 121

Appendix H Timeline of the Jewish World 125

Glossary 139

About the Author 149

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