Arthur Green, renowned spiritual leader and teacher, is one of the world's prominent authorities on Jewish thought and spirituality. He is the author of These Are the Words: A Vocabulary of Jewish Life; Ehyeh: A Kabbalah for Tomorrow; and Seek My Face: A Jewish Mystical Theology, among other books. He is the Irving Brudnick Professor of Jewish Philosophy and Religion and rector of the Rabbinical School at Hebrew College in Boston.
The Heart of the Matter is part of the Jewish Publication Society's Scholar of Distinction Series. The selection of Arthur Green is a perfect choice given the 40 years he has spent writing, teaching, and speaking about Judaism. In an essay titled "Introduction to Jewish Spirituality," he writes:
"Life in the presence of God -- or the cultivation of a life in the ordinary world bearing the holiness once associated with sacred space and time, with Temple and with holy days -- is perhaps as close as one can come to a definition of 'spirituality' that is native to the tradition and indeed faithful to its Semitic roots."
Green explores this subject further in this erudite and thought-provoking volume. It is divided into four sections:
- Judaism: The Religious Life
- Theology and Mysticism in Classical Sources
- Hasidism: Mysticism for the Masses
- Contemporary Jewish Theology
Whether pondering the Sabbath, the images of the Feminine, or a Kabbalah for the environmental age, Green proves to be a seasoned scholar. He sums up the Hasidic contributions to spirituality with his own personal Neo-Hasidic credo (see excerpt).