From Madonna's music videos to the glossy pages of celebrity magazines and back to the Lower East Side of Manhattan, Jewish mysticism has stepped into the modern consciousness like never before. In this classic work, world-renowned scholar Adin Steinsaltz answers the major questions asked by modern Jews about the nature of existence in God's universe. The title The Thirteen Petalled Rose is taken from the opening of the classic Jewish text on mysticism, the Zohar, and refers to the "collective souls of the Jewish people," which scholars have likened to the fullness of a rose and its thirteen petals. Along with a new preface by the author, this edition contains a new chapter on prayer that provides the most up-to-date account of the Kabbalistic view of devotion. Another new chapter recounts and interprets the prophet Elijah's Introduction to the Zohar. "Steinsaltz possesses a mind of the quality that occurs perhaps once or twice in a generation, or several generations...In [The Thirteen Petalled Rose] one can encounter the classical Jewish mystical view of reality, delineated lucidly, concisely, profoundly and, what is so rare, believingly. It is an utterly authentic expression of Judaism yet so unknown even among the well-informed and therefore so necessary, so welcome." (Herbert Weiner, Oxford University)
Renowned author, revered spiritual leader, innovator, legendary Talmudic scholar, educator, pioneer; Rabbi Adin Even-Israel Steinsaltz is an amalgamation of knowledge, talents, and characteristics.
Rabbi Steinsaltz has dedicated his life to the pursuit of knowledge culminating in the monumental translation and commentary of the Babylonian Talmud into modern vernacular. In parallel, he published over 60 books on a variety of subjects ranging from Jewish mysticism to zoology, set up a network of educational institutions in Israel and the former Soviet Union, and traveled the world lecturing in communities from Virginia to Vladivostok.
Rabbi Steinsaltz holds honorary degrees from Yeshiva University, Ben Gurion University, Bar Ilan University, and Brandeis University, and is a recipient of the Israel Prize and Israel's President's Prize, the country's highest honors
Shefa is the umbrella organization that unites all of Rabbi Adin Evan Israel (Steinsaltz's) work and institutions. Created in the 1970s, in its initial years Shefa's activities focused primarily on the writing and publication of The Steinsaltz Talmud, other books by the Rabbi and on his classes and lectures in Israel and abroad. In addition, the Shefa Yeshiva for advanced Jewish studies operated under its aegis.
Over the past three decades, Rabbi Evan Israel Steinsaltz's activities grew and expanded: creating educational institutions and other organizations for Jewish study in Israel and overseas; continuing to author books on a wide variety of themes; the translation of his published books into more than ten languages; and an intense world-wide travel schedule to teach Jewish thought to beginners and advanced students and scholars.
In 2005, the Shefa Institute was reorganized to ensure the proper management, coordination and operation of all the Rabbi's activities and institutions in Israel and abroad.
Located at the Steinsaltz Center, a beautiful edifice in the heart of Jerusalem that houses the Rabbi's personal study, administrative offices, The Israel Institute for Talmudic Publications, a research center and publishing wing, lecture hall with classes led by the Rabbi and other leading scholars and thinkers, and a department to raise needed funds to spread the message of Jewish study worldwide, Shefa has become the central address for all of Rabbi Adin Evan Israel Steinsaltz's activities.
In 2011, with the completion of his monumental "The Steinsaltz Talmud," an effort which took over 45 years to complete, the Rabbi and his team began working on four major initiatives: The Steinsaltz Mishnah; Commentary to the Bible; Commentary on Maimonides' Mishnah Torah; and an in-depth commentary to the Jewish prayer book, all efforts to provide access to what for so many are closed pages of Jewish thought.
Beyond these new projects, Shefa continues to coordinate the translation of the Steinsaltz Talmud and other publications into many languages and oversees the Rabbis travel itinerary to teach at communities around the world.
All of Shefa's programs are guided by Rabbi Steinsaltz's oft-quoted slogan: "Let My People Know" - a ceaseless, never-ending drive to make the treasures of Jewish culture accessible to all.