Major Trends in Jewish Mysticism by Gershom Scholem

By Gershom Scholem

Concise information from the publisher:
A selection of lectures at the positive factors of the circulation of mysticism that started in antiquity and keeps in Hasidism today.

Forward by means of Robert Altar, with this Scholem dedication:
TO THE reminiscence OFWALTER BENJAMIN  (1892–1940)
The good friend of a life-time whose genius united the insightof the Metaphysician, the interpretative energy of the Criticand the erudition of the Scholar

From a reader:
"... He covers the mystic Abraham Abulafia and his prophetic Kabbalism (and the way it broke Kabbalism in two), the Zohar and Moses de Leon, En-Sof (the hidden God), the 10 Sefiroth (numbers) and Sefirotic improvement over the years (from Sefer Yetzirah to the Zohar), additionally the Shekhinah (the woman facet of God), Isaac Luria (the Lion) and his scholars (his Cubs), and the lovely influence the exile from Spain had at the Kabbalah in general.
The final lectures disguise Sabbatai Sevi and the catastrophe he prompted the Jewish humans. He practically destroyed Judaism itself for 250 years afterwards. The effect continues to be felt to at the present time. He additionally indicates the trendy Hasid's (the Ultra-Orthadox Jews) and the way the Kabbalah and the Zohar influance their teachings and ideology. He additionally indicates why ordinary Orthadox Jews steer clear of the Kabbalah (calling it Jewish witchcraft) and why they considear the Hasid's to be cultists of a type (even although the Kabbalah was once Orthadox Judaism for three hundred years sooner than the arrival of Sabbatai Sevi - which Mr. Scholem painfully issues out).
I have in basic terms scrached the skin of the issues this e-book includes. if you happen to can purchase one e-book on Jewish mysticism, this can be it. it's definitely worth the purchase."

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As the summer moved on, the visits with Madame de Salzmann began to seem very far away, as if they had taken place a long time ago. I was no longer able to remember with any vividness what I had understood in her presence. What had been entirely clear and imperative then, now seemed like a good idea which would perhaps be useful to practise sometime. I wrote to Madame de Salzmann describing my inner situation. She wrote back in September, 1980: I was interested by your letter. What you feel is quite normal—an insufficiency, a lack of intensity of perception, a lack of freedom in the ordinary mind ...

Before we left, Madame de Salzmann said, "In Mr. Gurdjieff's presence one felt an extraordinary freedom to be what and how one wanted to be. He would give them food and drink—even oblige them to drink too much—to add to this freedom. But one could not behave 31 One cannot behave just anyhow Just anyhow. " Certainly, in the presence of Madame de Salzmann I have always felt an extraordinary freedom to be simply myself, without the burden of the usual considering, pretense and fear. However, being near a person of a higher level obliges one.

Finally, I said, "I have no special reason for wanting to see the apartment. Until yesterday, I did not even know that it existed. " 29 One cannot behave just anyhow She smiled very warmly and said, "What you say is true. On e wishes to get something without paying for it. Of course, you should see the place. It is important for you to see it. But you must see it in the right way, not anyhow. I will take you there myself. Come tomorrow! " I had no idea what had taken pl ace. It seemed like the situation in so many mythological stories: the bumbling hero does not understand what he is doing or what he should be doing, but some fairy or maiden, or some animal, gives him just the right help through a hint or a word, and he succeeds in spite of himself.

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