My Jewish Learning

Kabbalah & Mysticism Quiz

Jewish mystical teachings about the nature of God and reality have had a profound impact on the development of Judaism. How much do you know about this area of Jewish contemplation and spirituality?

Question 1. Which of these Jewish thinkers played a key role in popularizing Jewish meditation?
 Gershom Scholem
 Elliot Wolfson
 Aryeh Kaplan
 Avraham Berg


Question 2. Who was the first rebbe of Lubavitch and the author of the Tanya?
 Menachem Mendel Schneerson
 Israel Baal Shem Tov
 Shneur Zalman of Liadi
 Moses Mendelssohn


Question 3. What are kelipot?
 The head coverings that observant Jewish men wear
 The shells or husks that imprison the Holy Sparks
 The red strings that the Kabbalah Centre sells
 The scrolls that contain the most important works of kabbalistic thought


Question 4. Merkavah mysticism attempts to conceive of God as:
 A chariot, based on the Book of Ezekiel
 A lion, based on the Book of Daniel
 A pillar of fire, based on Exodus
 A vessel of oil, based on the story of Elisha


Question 5. Abraham Abulafia, a 13th-century mystic, was a devoted follower of
 The Emperor Constantine
 The prophet Samuel
 David Ben Gurion


Question 6. What is significant about Safed, the northern Israeli city?
 In medieval times, many spectral lights were seen in the sky over Safed
 The water surrounding Safed was seen as mystically enriching
 The city contained dirt carried from Mount Sinai, where the Torah was received
 After the Jews were exiled from Spain, many Jewish mystics settled there


Question 7. Which of the following kabbalistic thinkers attempted to attain prophecy?
 Isaac Luria
 Abraham Joshua Heschel
 Abraham Abulafia
 All of these
 None of these


Question 8. The poem Yedid Nefesh was written by
 The Arizal
 Eleazar Azikri
 Isaac Luria


Question 9. What is tzimtzum?
 A product of the shevirah, shattering
 A vessel of light flowing from the orfices of the first man
 Godís essential self
 A contraction of God into a finite space


Question 10. Which of these forms of Jewish mysticism came first?
 Merkavah mysticism
 Jewish Renewal
 Hasidic mysticism
 The Zohar