Love in the Messianic Age, Paul Philip Levertoff

A friend just told me yesterday he is going to graduate school with a concentration in Jewish mysticism and its history.

I myself have read very little Jewish mysticism and kabbalah and so forth. I remarked that my own plans to do doctoral work with a concentration in Ezekiel will bring me across texts in merkavah mysticism (merkavah means chariot and refers to the divine chariot vision at the beginning of Ezekiel). There is a subtext in Jewish writings from the early period of mysticism about the Divine Chariot vision, including many Talmudic texts.

In spite of my lack of experience with Jewish mystical texts, I did have a phase of life in which I read Christian mystics. A guest in my home library might notice The Cloud of Unknowing and The Interior Castle on my shelf, for example. I also enjoyed Bernard of Clairvaux

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4 Responses to Love in the Messianic Age, Paul Philip Levertoff

  1. rebyosh says:

    Derek-

    Great post! You inspired me to do a little blogging of my own.

    There is so many great things that can be said about Levertoff, and the works of so many great thinkers and writers among these Jewish believers of the 1800’s and early 1900’s. Much of the momentum of this “golden age” perished with the Shoah, only to be dug up again in recent years.

    I would like to add a thought to your comments on Merkavah mysticism. It is a carryover of biblical forms of mystical thoughts contained in the visions of the heavenly throne room as recorded by Ezekiel, Isaiah, and even the Book of the Revelation. Merkavah mysticism is mostly based on these biblical texts, and particularly Ezekiel’s vision.

    This is important because most people lump all of “Jewish mysticism” under the label Kabbalah. Not only is this problematic, it is historically inaccurate. Kabbalah is a type of Jewish mysticism, but hardly represents all of it.

  2. ahavah007 says:

    I consider this should be on every bible students MUST read book.

    It is completely enchanting and exhilarating at the same time.

  3. judeoxian says:

    “Meal of the Holy King” (Levertoff’s communion liturgy) combines elements of the Book of Common Prayer’s Eucharist liturgy with pieces from the Blessings of the Shema, the Shema itself, part of the Amidah, and elements of the meal liturgy for Shabbat. It’s a fascinating liturgy that I’ve begun to dissect and analyze.

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