Rachel Elior, Naftali Loewenthal
Jewish Mysticism is concerned with the infinity of meaning embedded in the sacred text and with grasping the divine being which transcends the boundaries of time and space. The Jewish mystical tradition is expressed in a huge diverse library written in the course of the last three millennia. Its content could be divided into two major focuses: one is known as Chariot and Temple Mysticism, and one is known as Kabbalah and Messianism.
Rachel Elior is John and Golda Cohen Professor of Jewish Philosophy and Jewish Mystical Thought at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. She has been a research fellow and visiting professor at University College London, the University of Amsterdam, Oberlin College, the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, the Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies, Case Western University, Yeshiva University, Tokyo University, and Princeton University. She is the author of numerous works on Jewish mysticism and hasidism, two of which are also published by the Littman Library: The Three Temples: On the Emergence of Jewish Mysticism (2004), and The Mystical Origins of Hasidism (2006). The recipient of many honours, she was awarded the 2006 Gershom Scholem Prize for the Study of Kabbalah and Jewish Mysticism by the Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities.
Dr Naftali Loewenthal, born in Haifa in 1944, lectures in Jewish Spirituality at UCL. He studied Hebrew Literature and Jewish History at UCL, followed by a PhD on Hasidism. He is the author of Communicating the Infinite: the Emergence of the Habad School and many scholarly articles on Hasidism.