Hasidism, instituted by Rabbi Israel Baal Shem Tov, centers around the concentrated study of the Talmud and its application to Jewish lives. Rabbi Israel Baal Shem Tov and his followers “created a way of Jewish life that emphasized the ability of all Jews to grow closer to God [in] everything they do, say, and think” (Jewish-Library). He also led European Jewry away from Rabbinism and toward mysticism which encouraged the poor and oppressed Jews of the 18th century to live carefree and hopeful. His methods and style of learning made Jewish life more optimistic. Today, a large majority of Jews reside in New York City, particularly Brooklyn, NY.
“The Hasidic ideal is to live a hallowed life, in which even the most mundane action is sanctified. Hasidim live in tightly-knit communities that are spiritually centered around a dynastic leader known as a rebbe, who combines political and religious authority” (Hasidism in America). Hasidic Jews endeavor to obey the Talmud completely and immaculately. They strive to live a blameless life free from guilt and sin. “The basic Hasidic vision… is the achievement of a righteous life, a life that can only be lived in a sanctified community of like-minded souls” (Hasidism in America). Hasidic Jews sequester themselves from the world in order to protect themselves from corruption, to draw closer to God, and to eliminate any temptation or secular idea that might hinder them from learning...
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...on: As a City upon a Hill?" PBS: Public Broadcasting Service. Web. 04 Apr. 2011.
"HasidicNews.com - Hasidism Made Simple." HasidicNews.com - Hasidic Community and Culture. Web. 07 Apr. 2011.
"Hasidic Judaism." Balanced Views of Religion and Spirituality with Faith | Patheos. Web. 12 Apr. 2011.
"Hasidic Judaism - Ultra-Orthodox Jews - Hasidism." About Judaism. Web. 29 Mar. 2011.
"Hasidism." Jewish Virtual Library - Homepage. Web. 29 Mar. 2011.
"Satmar (Hasidic Dynasty) - English Hareidi." Hareidi.org. Web. 12 Apr. 2011.
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