The Heart and the Fountain

The Heart and the Fountain : An Anthology of Jewish Mystical Experiences

3.78 (23 ratings by Goodreads)
Edited by 

List price: US$35.00

Currently unavailable

We can notify you when this item is back in stock

Add to wishlist

AbeBooks may have this title (opens in new window).

Try AbeBooks

Description

Author of more than fifty books and winner of the 1997 Israel Prize, Joseph Dan is one of the world's leading authorities on Jewish mysticism. In this superb anthology, Dan not only presents illuminating excerpts from the most important mystical texts, but also delves into the very meaning of mysticism itself. Dan takes readers through the historical development of Jewish mysticism, from late antiquity to the modern period. He explores the Kabbalah, the esoteric tradition that delves into the secrets delivered by God to Moses on Mount Sinai, and the emergence of Hasidism, and much more. He presents the great texts, from Hekhalot Rabbati, "The Greater Book of Divine Palaces," set in the temple in Jerusalem; to the apocalyptic vision of Abraham Abulafia in the thirteenth century; to the Zohar, perhaps the best-known volume of all. For each piece, he offers an extended introduction that deftly places the work in the context of its time and its antecedents.
Equally important, in his opening essay, he addresses the paradoxes inherent in Jewish mysticism, noting for instance that "mystical" is a Christian concept, one that poorly describes the relevant strains of Judaism, and that a mystical approach to religious truth springs from a deep doubt that language can communicate divine truth. "Mysticism is that which cannot be expressed in words, period," Dan writes. In this remarkable volume, he guides us through that seemingly impenetrable barrier to show how the inexpressible has been expressed in some of the most profound and challenging writing in existence.
show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 336 pages
  • 164.1 x 242.8 x 29.2mm | 716.68g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 019513978X
  • 9780195139785

About Joseph Dan

Joseph Dan is the Gershom Scholem Professor of Kabbalah at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. A winner of the Israel Prize in 1997, he is recognized as one of the most influential scholars of Jewish mysticism in the world today.
show more

Review quote

"From its very first page, it's obvious that this lucid, authentically Jewish and scholarly work is different from the numerous recent titles that have jumped on the kabbalistic bandwagon. Dan, an expert on Jewish mysticism and winner of the 1997 Israel Prize, carefully explodes several misconceptions. More than 25 selections reflect the remarkable scope of Jewish mysticism, from the visions of Rabbi Akiba and Rabbi Ishmael to the secrets of the Zohar; from apocalyptic, messianic and magical texts to the vibrant writing of four contemporary Israeli poets--an unconventional inclusion. This volume will appeal to any serious reader of mysticism."--PW Religion Bookline"A distinguished scholar and author, Joseph Dan brings force and clarity to his exposition of Jewish mystical texts, allowing the reader to make distinctions that aren't at all obvious, but are certainly useful. After explaining the term "mysticism" in a Jewish context, Dan provides a surprising range of texts, that bring us from ancient Israel to our own moment. This is a book to learn from."--Rodger Kamenetz, author of The Jew in the Lotus, Stalking Elijah, Terra Infirma, and The Missing Jew "From its very first page, it's obvious that this lucid, authentically Jewish and scholarly work is different from the numerous recent titles that have jumped on the kabbalistic bandwagon. Dan, an expert on Jewish mysticism and winner of the 1997 Israel Prize, carefully explodes several misconceptions. More than 25 selections reflect the remarkable scope of Jewish mysticism, from the visions of Rabbi Akiba and Rabbi Ishmael to the secrets of the Zohar; from apocalyptic, messianic and magical texts to the vibrant writing of four contemporary Israeli poets--an unconventional inclusion. This volume will appeal to any serious reader of mysticism."--PW Religion Bookline "A distinguished scholar and author, Joseph Dan brings force and clarity to his exposition of Jewish mystical texts, allowing the reader to make distinctions that aren't at all obvious, but are certainly useful. After explaining the term "mysticism" in a Jewish context, Dan provides a surprising range of texts, that bring us from ancient Israel to our own moment. This is a book to learn from."--Rodger Kamenetz, author of The Jew in the Lotus, Stalking Elijah, Terra Infirma, and The Missing Jew "From its very first page, it's obvious that this lucid, authentically Jewish and scholarly work is different from the numerous recent titles that have jumped on the kabbalistic bandwagon. Dan, an expert on Jewish mysticism and winner of the 1997 Israel Prize, carefully explodes several misconceptions. More than 25 selections reflect the remarkable scope of Jewish mysticism, from the visions of Rabbi Akiba and Rabbi Ishmael to the secrets of the Zohar; from apocalyptic, messianic and magical texts to the vibrant writing of four contemporary Israeli poets--an unconventional inclusion. This volume will appeal to any serious reader of mysticism."--PW Religion Bookline "A distinguished scholar and author, Joseph Dan brings force and clarity to his exposition of Jewish mystical texts, allowing the reader to make distinctions that aren't at all obvious, but are certainly useful. After explaining the term "mysticism" in a Jewish context, Dan provides a surprising range of texts, that bring us from ancient Israel to our own moment. This is a book to learn from."--Rodger Kamenetz, author of The Jew in the Lotus, Stalking Elijah, Terra Infirma, and The Missing Jew "From its very first page, it's obvious that this lucid, authentically Jewish and scholarly work is different from the numerous recent titles that have jumped on the kabbalistic bandwagon. Dan, an expert on Jewish mysticism and winner of the 1997 Israel Prize, carefully explodes severalmisconceptions. More than 25 selections reflect the remarkable scope of Jewish mysticism, from the visions of Rabbi Akiba and Rabbi Ishmael to the secrets of the Zohar; from apocalyptic, messianic and magical texts to the vibrant writing of four contemporary Israeli poets--an unconventionalinclusion. This volume will appeal to any serious reader of mysticism."--PW Religion Bookline"A distinguished scholar and author, Joseph Dan brings force and clarity to his exposition of Jewish mystical texts, allowing the reader to make distinctions that aren't at all obvious, but are certainly useful. After explaining the term "mysticism" in a Jewish context, Dan provides a surprisingrange of texts, that bring us from ancient Israel to our own moment. This is a book to learn from."--Rodger Kamenetz, author of The Jew in the Lotus, Stalking Elijah, Terra Infirma, and The Missing Jew
show more

Rating details

23 ratings
3.78 out of 5 stars
5 35% (8)
4 22% (5)
3 30% (7)
2 13% (3)
1 0% (0)
Book ratings by Goodreads
Goodreads is the world's largest site for readers with over 50 million reviews. We're featuring millions of their reader ratings on our book pages to help you find your new favourite book. Close X