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Kabbalah: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) Paperback – 30 Aug 2007

4.7 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: OUP USA (30 Aug. 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0195327055
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195327052
  • Product Dimensions: 17.3 x 1 x 10.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 108,052 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description


"Dan has given us the best concise history of Jewish mysticism.... As a 'very short introduction' to this sublime treasure house, Joseph Dan's book is warmly recommended."―Benjamin Balint, Commentary

"In a little more than a hundred pages, Dan races through more than a thousand years of Jewish religious texts, explaining a vast, amorphous body of beliefs and practices that have influenced Freemasons, Hasidim, Carl Jung, New Age gurus and, more recently, Hollywood celebrities. It's quite a performance, carried off with only a few stumbles."―William Grimes, The New York Times

"Professor Dan is one of the leading scholars of Jewish mysticism in the world today. He combines deep erudition with methodological sophistication and clarity of exposition. He is the ideal person to write a short introduction to the study of the Kabbalah."―Shaye J. D. Cohen, Harvard University

"This survey of Kabbalah offers deep history in succinct fashion, resulting in a fascinating and highly readable effort."―Publishers Weekly

"A lucid history and explanation of Kabbalah, covering its key periods, texts, figures, and theories. Dan knowledgeably and expertly untangles the complexity of the tradition, specifically addressing misconceptions by discussing what Kabbalah is and what it is not.... This primer is scholarly yet accessible to the lay reader; it's 'Kabbalah for Dummies' sans the cheeky humor."―Library Journal

"Even someone who knows nothing more than the celebrity connection will come away with a nuanced understanding."―Dallas Morning News

"Culling over fifty years of Kabbalah research, Joseph Dan presents a schematic introduction to Kabbalah, its major periods, personalities, and ideas. This slim volume is a window into the intriguing history of this esoteric wisdom - its Christian and Islamic influences, the proliferation of Christian Kabbalah, its influence on modern philosophy, and the important periods of Jewish heresy. From the ancient world to New Age spirituality, Dan lucidly covers the key ideas of Kabbalah as they developed over the centuries. Accessible, readable, and informative."―Shaul Magid, Indiana University

About the Author

Joseph Dan is the Gershom Scholem Professor of Kabbalah in the Department of Jewish Thought, at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. His many books include The Heart and the Fountain: Jewish Mystical Experiences, The Early Kabbalah, and The Teachings of Hasidism. He resides in Jerusalem and in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where he is a visiting professor at the Harvard Divinity School.

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Amazon.com: 3.7 out of 5 stars 11 reviews
Miha Ahronovitz
5.0 out of 5 starsBest book for rational minds interested in Kabbalah
10 March 2007 - Published on Amazon.com
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5 people found this helpful.
T. A. Parkhurst
4.0 out of 5 starsVery Short it is
3 March 2014 - Published on Amazon.com
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Alejandro Hajdenberg
5.0 out of 5 starsFantastic book
5 August 2013 - Published on Amazon.com
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Terence Ccurtin
4.0 out of 5 starsFour Stars
18 January 2016 - Published on Amazon.com
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L. Wolf
4.0 out of 5 starsA few shortcomings, but overall quite good
16 July 2013 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback|Verified Purchase
3 people found this helpful.

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