The Zohar's Influence

Few post-talmudic works have been as revered as the Zohar, the mystical commentary on the Torah.

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The Zohar, like other classical works of Judaism, has been the subject of applied study by modern scholars in the historical‑critical mode. On the contemporary religious scene, many Orthodox Jews, even if they have little or no knowledge of the Zohar, still revere the work as sacred literature. But it has never become a matter of dogma to believe that the Zohar is a sacred work and, even among the Orthodox it is possible to be a good Jew and a true believer without accepting the Zohar as an inspired work. Reform and Conservative Judaism are often critical of the Zohar and its influence while at the same time admiring the many beautiful ideas and numinous insights found in this remarkable work, unique in the history of religion for its mystical style and daring flights of the imagination.

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Rabbi Louis Jacobs

Rabbi Dr. Louis Jacobs (1920-2006) was a Masorti rabbi, the first leader of Masorti Judaism (also known as Conservative Judaism) in the United Kingdom, and a leading writer and thinker on Judaism.