Sapphire from the Land of Israel: A New Light on the Weekly Torah Portion From the Writings of Rabbi Abraham Isaac HaKohen Kook

September 24, 2013 - Comment

Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook (1865-1935), the celebrated first Chief Rabbi of pre-state Israel, is recognized as being among the most important Jewish thinkers. Just as his writings reflect the mystic s search for underlying unity in all aspects of life and the world, his unique personality united a rare combination of talents and gifts. A

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Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook (1865-1935), the celebrated first Chief Rabbi of pre-state Israel, is recognized as being among the most important Jewish thinkers. Just as his writings reflect the mystic s search for underlying unity in all aspects of life and the world, his unique personality united a rare combination of talents and gifts. A prominent rabbinical authority and active public leader, Rav Kook was, at the same time, a deeply religious mystic. He was both Talmudic scholar and poet, original thinker and tzaddik.

Because of their poetic and mystical nature, Rav Kook’s writings are difficult even for readers who are fluent in Hebrew and rabbinic texts. Sapphire from the Land of Israel uses a clear, succinct style to provide the reader with a window into Rav Kook’s original and creative insights.

A companion volume to Gold from the Land of Israel on the Torah, this book presents more of Rav Kook’s thoughts on the weekly Torah reading (parasha). It elucidates his views on many topics, including:
Why do we find different names for God in the Torah? Why are first-born donkeys holy? Why did the Torah need to give doctors permission to heal? If “eye for an eye” means monetary compensation, why does the Torah not say that explicitly? Why did God command that we bring korbanot (Temple offerings)? Why are only kohanim allowed to serve in the Temple? Why didn’t the Torah explicitly state where to build the Temple?

Comments

Rabbi Shmuel Jablon says:

Rabbi Morrison does it again! He brings Rav Kook to the English speaking world. Rabbi Shlomo Aviner (Rosh Yeshivat Ateret Yerushalayim and rabbi of Bet El) has spoken of Rav Avraham Yitzchak haKohen Kook as being not simply the Gadol haDor – the leading scholar of our generation – but the Gadol haDorot, the leading scholar of generations. This is because the first Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi of the Land of Israel had a dramatic impact not only on his generation, but on all those that followed. It was Rav Kook who was able combine many ideals – Torah Judaism, loyalty to the…

Charles S Feinstein says:

Valuable for all levels of knowledge. This book continues the trend of the fine works by Rabbi Morrison. He is able to introduce the works of Ha Rav Kook to those of us who don’t have the traditional learning background. We are thus able to learn from and have some exposure to the fantastic mind that the late Ha Rav Kook had. Well worth adding to one’s library-this and the previous two volumes.

Chana says:

Bring Rav Kook to your Shabbos table This is a very nice parsha book.Due to the fact its on kindle you will of have to prepare the divar torah b/4 shabbos.Did you know if you do not have a kindle their are kindle apps for Apple and Android so do not worry about that.An example of a divar torah is Rav Kook in this past week divar torah explains a misconception about teshuva and this is a good thing to know for this time of year.

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