By Mark Verman
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Additional resources for The Books of Contemplation: Medieval Jewish Mystical Sources
These specific lines in Contemplation-Short bear a strong resemblance to a statement in R. Azriel's Sha'ar ha-Sho'el: "He is [in a state of] complete balance when in perfect unity.... He is the essence of all that is hidden and revealed," in Derekh 'Emunah (Jerusalem 1967), 3. Although it is generally assumed that shaveh implies equivalence or balance, H. Yalon demonstrated that shaveh is synonymous with lJibbur, conjoined, Pirkei Lashon (Jerusalem 1971), 212f. For a recent study of the possible Islamic philosophical sources of 'alJdut ha-shaveh, see A.
So great was Castile's fame that at the end of the century a certain R. Isaac, from Acco in northern Israel, heard rumors of its marvellous teachings, and journeyed far and long to corroborate their veracity. The question that confronts us is why did intense mystical activity last but a few decades elsewhere in western Europe, whereas in Castile it continued to flourish for at least a century? When one compares the various groups, certain social patterns emerge. The German Pietists were founded by a prominent scholar, R.
Scholem, Origins, 439, n. 174. Tishby has noted that R. Azriel "usually employs this concept in connection with the conjunction of opposites within the Supernal Root, shoresh ha- 'elyon," "Kitvei ha-Mekubbalim R. Ezra ve-R. Azriel me- Gerona," Sinai, 16 (1945), 166. These specific lines in Contemplation-Short bear a strong resemblance to a statement in R. Azriel's Sha'ar ha-Sho'el: "He is [in a state of] complete balance when in perfect unity.... He is the essence of all that is hidden and revealed," in Derekh 'Emunah (Jerusalem 1967), 3.