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Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi
Transcript of Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi
The Alter Rebbe
Dr. Henry Abramson
The Tumultuous Turn
of the 19th Century
Origins of Hasidism
Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi, "The Alter Rebbe"
Rabbi Aryeh Citron
Magid of Mezerich
Schneur Zalman of Liadi
The Vilna Gaon, 1720-1797
Fear of Sabbateanism
Antinomianism: Prayer, kosher slaughter, etc.
Attitude to learning; role of the Rebbe
Traditional rabbinic education, showed early promise
Married Sterna, devoted wife
Exposed to teachings of the Magid of Mezerich, impressed with harmonization of mystical and rational elements of Lithuanian-style Hasidism
"In Vilna you are taught how to master the Torah; in Mezerich you are taught how to let the Torah master you."
Despite youth, rose to position of prominence in rapidly expanding Hasidic movement
Tempted to emigrate to Israel, but acquiesced to followers to remain
Acknowledged erudition considered invaluable for positioning in Lithuania
2. Shulhan Arukh
Tendency of mitnagdic-hasidic controversy to erupt around publication dates
Argument over doctrinal positions
1797 passing of Vilna Gaon
Rabbi Schneur Zalman arrested 1798
Charges: espionage and treason
Highly unusual interrogations
Released after 53 days on 19 Kislev