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Rabbi Nachman's Stories Hardcover – April 1, 1985


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Rabbi Nachman's Stories + The Empty Chair: Finding Hope and Joy - Timeless Wisdom from a Hasidic Master, Rebbe Nachman of Breslov + Outpouring of the Soul Rabbi Nachman's Path in Meditation
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 552 pages
  • Publisher: Breslov Research Institute (April 1, 1985)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0930213025
  • ISBN-13: 978-0930213022
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 5.8 x 1.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #246,344 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Rabbi Yonassan Gershom VINE VOICE on March 19, 2004
Format: Hardcover
This translation and copious commentary was officially commissioned by the Breslov Research Institute, and is considered definitive by most English-speaking Breslover Hasidim. (We should clarify here that "Breslov" is what the group calls itself, named after the town of Breslov in Ukraine. "Bratzlav" is a mistranslation by Martin Buber, who apparently confused the Ukrainian town with one in Germany. Both names refer to the same Rabbi Nachman, great-grandson of the Ba'al Shem Tov.)

In preparing this volume, Aryeh Kaplan (translator/compiler) drew upon authentic Breslov source materials, many of which existed only in manuscript form or oral tradition. Other sources were rare volumes that had never before appeared in English. (A detailed bibliography is included, with brief bios on the authors and info on the various editions cited.) Of special interest are the little histories of each tale, i.e., the exact circumstances which prompted Rabbi Nachman to tell it.

In addition to the better-known tales such as "The Lost Princess" and "The Seven Beggars," this book includes many shorter tales and parables that, to my knowledge, have not appeared in any other English collection. My only complaint is that the asterisks and brackets within the text (referring to notes below) detract from readability, and the English is rather clumsy at times. For oral storytelling, I prefer Adin Steinsaltz's "Beggars and Prayers." But for good scholarship, Kaplan's book is unsurpassed.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Ian M. Slater TOP 1000 REVIEWER on May 18, 2004
Format: Hardcover
The Hasidim (Chasidim) are, literally, "the Pious Ones" (or perhaps "the Faithful"). It is a very old term in Hebrew. In current Jewish usage the word refers mainly to a popular mystically-inspired movement which emerged in Eastern Europe in the eighteenth century, and which persists today, chiefly as communities around charismatic leaders, the heirs, or their appointed successors, of their original founders. (There are other Hasidic movements in Jewish history, the most notable being one in Second Temple times, and another, also with mystical leanings, but elitist, in medieval France, the Rhineland, and the German states.)

The community founded by Nachman (Nahman) of Breslov, however, never recognized a successor to the original Rebbe (Rabbi), and continues to regard the writings and traditions of their founder as their truest guide. This has produced a body of commentary around Nachman's writings, and the recollections of his immediate disciples, and a major effort to translate portions into English. The late Aryeh Kaplan played a major part in this effort, which can be called "Pietist" in a more general sense of reverent deference to the past.

Aryeh Kaplan's translation of, and commentary on, stories told by the Nachman of Breslov (late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries) is an example of Breslover Hasidic piety in two ways. One, in faithful adherence to the text, as it is understood by the Breslover Hasidim. Second, it is faithful in the pious endeavor to explain the text in an edifying, and doctrinally consistent, way. It includes a set of now-classic major "Tales," and some other stories told by Rebbe Nachman.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mary Robbins on March 29, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
these stories are not something i can just sit down and read through. They are stories that take me sometime to digest the deeper meanings behind the stories. They are very good life lessons in each story. This is another great addition to my library. You are given much more than just a story, you are given the story behind the story, great for those who want to know more of how to please God and get along much better with our fellow man.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Devon A. Barker on October 2, 2007
Format: Hardcover
A fantastic book. Very inspiring. I could not stop reading it. It had so much knowledge and spectacular opinions.
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