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Saints: Encountering the Divine in Humanity

  • Alon Goshen-Gottstein
Chapter
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Part of the Interreligious Studies in Theory and Practice book series (INSTTP)

Abstract

Spirituality is never lived in the abstract. It finds expression through institutions, actions, and, above all, in the lives of people who practice a spiritual path and whose practice serves as a model for others. People who have attained a certain level in the spiritual life also become instrumental in the spiritual lives of others. They become teachers and facilitators of the spiritual life of others. Very often, the spiritual life is mediated through such personalities. Such role models, teachers, and facilitators exist in all traditions. Each tradition configures them differently and understands them in light of its norms and unique patterns of thinking. Looking at the lives of exemplary men and women across religious traditions is thus both an exercise in observation and description and an application of thought structures, through which what is seen is understood and interpreted.1

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Notes

  1. 7.
    Azriel Carlebach’s India: A Road Journal, Ayanot, Tel Aviv, 1956 [Hebrew]Google Scholar
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    See Gilbert Rosenthal, “As-If” Theology and Liberal Judaism, Conservative Judaism 39, 1, 1986, pp. 34–45Google Scholar
  3. 11.
    See Rudolf Mach, Der Zaddik in Talmud und Midrasch, Brill, Leiden, 1957;Google Scholar
  4. E. E. Urbach, The Sages: Their Concepts and Beliefs, Magness Press, Jerusalem, 1975, pp. 487–511;Google Scholar
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  6. Gershom Scholem, On the Mystical Shape of the Godhead, Schoken, New York, 1991, Chapter 3;Google Scholar
  7. Moshe Idel, Hasidism: Between Ecstasy and Magic, SUNY Press, Albany, NY, 1995, Chapter 6.Google Scholar
  8. 17.
    See Gene Thursby, Swami Muktananda and the Seat of Power, When Prophets Die: The Postcharismatic Fate of New Religious Movements, ed. Timothy Miller, SUNY Press, Albany, NY, 1991, pp. 165–182.Google Scholar
  9. See also Douglas Brooks, Taking Sides and Opening Doors: Authority and Integrity in the Academy’s Hinduism, Journal of American Academy of Religion 68, 4, 2000, pp. 817–829.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

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© Alon Goshen-Gottstein 2016

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  • Alon Goshen-Gottstein

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