Jewish Mysticism and the Spiritual Life: Classical Texts, Contemporary Reflections
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About the Author
Eitan Fishbane, PhD, a frequent scholar-in-residence and guest speaker at congregations across North America, is assistant professor of Jewish thought at The Jewish Theological Seminary; author of As Light Before Dawn: The Inner World of a Medieval Kabbalist (Stanford University Press); and co-editor of Jewish Mysticism and the Spiritual Life: Classical Texts, Contemporary Reflections (Jewish Lights).
Eitan Fishbane is available to speak on the following topics:
- God and Theology
Yehonatan Chipman, an Orthodox rabbi, lives in Jerusalem, where he works as a
professional translator of academic Jewish texts. He is currently writing his first
book on Jewish religious thought.
Reb Mimi Feigelson is an Israeli Orthodox rabbi. She is the mashpiah ruchanit
(spiritual mentor) and lecturer in Rabbinic literature and Hasidic thought at the
Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies of American Jewish University in Los Angeles.
She is the former associate director of Yakar in Jerusalem and is an international
teacher of Hasidism and spirituality.
Michael Fishbane is the Nathan Cummings Distinguished Service Professor of Jewish Studies at the University of Chicago. He is the author of many books, including Sacred Attunement: A Jewish Theology, also published by the University of Chicago Press.
Rabbi Nancy Flam is cofounder of the National Center for Jewish Healing and former director of the Jewish Community Healing Program of Ruach Ami Bay Area Jewish Healing Center. She cofounded the Institute for Jewish Spirituality, was its founding director, and now serves as codirector of programs. She edited the Jewish Lights series of pastoral-care pamphlets, LifeLights, and writes and teaches widely on Judaism, healing, prayer, spirituality, and social justice.
Rabbi Everett Gendler was ordained at The Jewish Theological Seminary of America. After serving congregations in Mexico City; Rio de Janeiro; and Princeton, New Jersey, he was rabbi for many years at Temple Emanuel in Lowell, Massachusetts, while also serving as Jewish chaplain and instructor in philosophy and religious studies at Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts. He has written widely on Judaism and the environment, nonviolence, social justice, and liturgical
Joel Hecker is associate professor of Jewish mysticism at the Reconstructionist
Rabbinical College. He is the author of Mystical Bodies, Mystical Meals: Eating
and Embodiment in Medieval Kabbalah and is currently preparing a translation
of the Zohar on Song of Songs, Ruth, and Lamentations for volume eleven of The
Zohar: Pritzker Edition.
Rabbi Shai Held is cofounder, rosh ha-yeshiva, and chair in Jewish thought at
Mechon Hadar in New York City. He is completing a doctoral dissertation on the
religious thought of Abraham Joshua Heschel at Harvard University. He contributed
to Jewish Mysticism and the Spiritual Life: Classical Texts, Contemporary Reflections and Jewish Theology in Our Time: A New Generation Explores the Foundations and
Future of Jewish Belief (both Jewish Lights).
Melila Hellner-Eshed is a professor of Jewish mysticism in the Department of
Jewish Studies at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, as well as a senior research fellow
at the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem. She is a member of the faculty
of the Institute for Jewish Spirituality and is active in Sulha, an Israeli-Palestinian
reconciliation project. She is the author of A River Flows from Eden: The
Language of Mystical Experience in the Zohar.
Jeremy Kalmanofsky is rabbi of congregation Ansche Chesed in New York City.
He was ordained at The Jewish Theological Seminary of America. His articles
have appeared in a variety of Jewish journals, as well as in Jewish Mysticism and the Spiritual Life: Classical Texts, Contemporary Reflections and Jewish Theology in
Our Time: A New Generation Explores the Foundations and Future of Jewish
Belief (both Jewish Lights). He serves on the editorial board of Conservative Judaism,
and is a member of the Committee on Jewish Law and Standards of the
Judith A. Kates teaches Hebrew Bible and Jewish interpretive traditions at the
Rabbinical School of Hebrew College and in many programs of adult learning.
She is the coeditor (with Gail Twersky Reimer) of Reading Ruth: Contemporary
Women Reclaim a Sacred Story and Beginning Anew: A Woman's Companion to
the High Holy Days.
Rabbi Lawrence Kushner is available to speak on the following topics:
- Jewish Mystical Imagination- Rymanover's Silent Aleph: What Really Happened on Sinai- Zohar on Romance and Revelation- What Makes Kabbalah Kabbalah- Sacred Stories of the Ordinary: When God Makes a Surprise Appearance in Everyday LifeClick here to contact the author.
Rabbi Ebn Leader is director of the Bet Midrash and an instructor in Talmud, Jewish law and Jewish mysticism at the Rabbinical School of Hebrew College. He is the coeditor of God in All Moments: Mystical and Practical Wisdom from Hasidic Masters, and has contributed to Jewish Mysticism and the Spiritual Life: Classical Texts, Contemporary Reflections (both Jewish Lights). Prior to coming to Hebrew College, he served for several years as an educator at Jewish secondary schools in Jerusalem and Boston.
Shaul Magid, PhD, is the Jay and Jeannie Schottenstein Professor of Modern Judaism and professor of religious studies at Indiana University Bloomington. He is the author of Hasidism on the Margin: Reconciliation, Antinomianism, and Messianism in Izbica/Radzin Hasidism and From Metaphysics to Midrash: Myth, History, and the Interpretation of Scripture in Lurianic Kabbala, which won the
American Academy of Religion Award for Excellence in the Study of Religion in the Textual Studies category.
Prof. Haviva Pedaya teaches Judaism and culture in the Department of Jewish
History at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. She is the author of Vision and
Speech: Models of Prophecy in Jewish Mysticism (Hebrew), Within the Eye of the
Cat (Hebrew), and other works. Prof. Pedaya is also an award-winning Hebrew
poet and musical director of the Yonah Ensemble, a project devoted to the revitalization
of the liturgical and mystical music of the Near East.
Rabbi Nehemia Polen is professor of Jewish thought at Hebrew College. He is the
author of The Holy Fire: The Teachings of Rabbi Kalonymus Kalman Shapira, the
Rebbe of the Warsaw Ghetto and The Rebbe's Daughter, recipient of a National
Jewish Book Award. He is also a contributor to the award-winning My People's
Prayer Book: Traditional Prayers, Modern Commentaries (Jewish Lights).
Carol Rose is a writer, educator, and counselor. She holds an MA in theology as
well as degrees in religious studies and cross-cultural education. Her publications
include Behind the Blue Gate and Spider Women: A Tapestry of Creativity and
Healing, coedited with Joan Turner.
Rabbi Neal Rose is a family therapist and professor of theology at the University
of Winnipeg and has studied and lived in the Bratslav community in Jerusalem.
He has written about Martin Buber's presentation of Hasidism.
Rabbi Zalman M. Schachter-Shalomi (z"l), the inspiration of the Jewish Renewal movement, is widely recognized as one of the most important Jewish spiritual teachers of our time. Professor at Temple University, he authored many books including Davening: A Guide to Meaningful Jewish Prayer, winner of the National Jewish Book Award; First Steps to a New Jewish Spirit: Reb Zalman's Guide to Recapturing the Intimacy & Ecstasy in Your Relationship with God (both Jewish Lights); From Age-ing to Sage-ing and Wrapped in a Holy Flame.
Rabbi Jonathan P. Slater, DMin, was ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America and has a doctor of ministry degree from the Pacific School of Religion. He is the author of Mindful Jewish Living: Compassionate Practice and codirector of programs at the Institute for Jewish Spirituality, as well as an instructor in meditation at the JCC in Manhattan and other venues. He contributed to Who by Fire, Who by Water--Un'taneh Tokef, We Have Sinned: Sin and Confession in Judaism--Ashamnu and Al Chet and All These Vows--Kol Nidre (both Jewish Lights).
Rabbi Gordon Tucker, PhD, is senior rabbi at Temple Israel Center in White Plains, New York, and adjunct assistant professor of Jewish philosophy at The Jewish Theological Seminary of America where he formerly served as dean of its rabbinical school. He is the editor and translator of Heavenly Torah: As Refracted through the Generations.
Sheila Peltz Weinberg was ordained by the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College
and has served as an educator, activist, liturgist, and congregational rabbi. She has
helped introduce meditation into the Jewish world as a form that can enliven and
illuminate Jewish practice. She is a founder and outreach director of the Institute
for Jewish Spirituality and the author of Surprisingly Happy: An Atypical
Chava Weissler is the Philip and Muriel Berman Professor of Jewish Civilization in
the Department of Religion Studies at Lehigh University. She is the author of
Voices of the Matriarchs: Listening to the Prayers of Early Modern Jewish Women
and is completing a book on the Jewish Renewal movement in North America.
"A dazzling collection that displays the concerns and insights that animate the [mystical and Hasidic] texts and traditions.... A spiritual feast of religious meaning for those who enter its pages."
--Rabbi David Ellenson, PhD, president, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion
"An illuminating and often moving collection that reflects the breadth and depth of contemporary interest in these texts as guides to Jewish spirituality and practice in our time."
--Avivah Gottlieb Zornberg, author, The Murmuring Deep: Reflections on the Biblical
"A landmark collection that deserves to be read and reread. The diverse insights draw the seeker into the wisdom of Judaism in a way that may draw them into the community of practice as well."
--Rabbi Rami Shapiro, author, Hasidic Tales: Annotated & Explained and Ecclesiastes: Annotated & Explained
"Illuminates and probes deeply in multiple fields while speaking to engaged spiritual seekers and scholars. Studded with gems, often overflowing with learning and insights. All who want to grow spiritually, live more deeply, to both connect to tradition and renew it will find something to nurture their souls in this book."
--Rabbi Irving Greenberg, founding president, Jewish Life Network; founding president, Clal: The National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership
"An orchard of spiritual pomegranates, tended by some of today's most gifted Jewish scholars. A delight to read."
--Jay Michaelson, author, Everything Is God: The Radical Path of Nondual Judaism and God in Your Body: Kabbalah, Mindfulness and Embodied Spiritual Practice