From Metaphysics to Midrash

Myth, History, and the Interpretation of Scripture in Lurianic Kabbala

by Shaul Magid

Published by: Indiana University Press

368 Pages, 6.00 x 9.00 x 0.00 in, 2 figures

  • Hardcover
  • 9780253350886
  • Published: July 2008

$39.95

  • eBook
  • 9780253000378
  • Published: July 2008

$9.99

In From Metaphysics to Midrash, Shaul Magid explores the exegetical tradition of Isaac Luria and his followers within the historical context in 16th-century Safed, a unique community that brought practitioners of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam into close contact with one another. Luria's scripture became a theater in which kabbalists redrew boundaries of difference in areas of ethnicity, gender, and the human relation to the divine. Magid investigates how cultural influences altered scriptural exegesis of Lurianic Kabbala in its philosophical, hermeneutical, and historical perspectives. He suggests that Luria and his followers were far from cloistered. They used their considerable skills to weigh in on important matters of the day, offering, at times, some surprising solutions to perennial theological problems.