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Sacred Therapy: Jewish Spiritual Teachings on Emotional Healing and Inner Wholeness Paperback – March 8, 2005
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"Her use of Kabalistic cosmology to reflect on emotional pain, broken-heartedness, and separation is especially strong and moving."—Library Journal
"Frankel has done an impressive job of blending ancient Jewish wisdom with modern psychology to fashion a powerful force for healing."—Harold Kushner, author of When Bad Things Happen to Good People
"I highly recommend this compelling book to readers from all backgrounds, for its wisdom is rich and universal."—David A. Cooper, author of God Is a Verb
More About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
A practicing psychotherapist and a "seasoned teacher of Jewish mysticism, Frankel studied and practiced Jewish mysticism in Israel for 8 years, and has been personally tutored by both Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi and Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach. For someone like myself, who has been in and out of Jewish mysticism and Kabbalah as a dilettante, I have found parts of this book absolutely fascinating, especially Biblical-era stories and musings of what it was, exactly, that happened with Moses and the People of Israel out there in the desert... (When was the last time you were part of a group illumination, what my Pennsylvanian friends would call an "egregrore"?)
The book consists of modern-stay healing stories, Midrashic-level musings, Hasidic wisdom and tales, and practical rituals and strategies for self-transformation and spiritual upliftment. The Kabbalah is, of course, returned to time and time again, and many themes that I would call (perhaps anachronistically) gnostic permeate the text. Here is one of my favorite passages:
"At every transition point in the life cycle, when one stage of life ends and another begins, we inevitably pass through this death-rebirth cycle of creation, dissolutoin, and re-creation.Read more ›
The format of Sacred Therapy lays out a field I can easily navigate. Author and therapist Estelle Frankel defines terms and sets a course that weaves personal context through the primary Jewish mystical map: to see ourselves as imperfect (but perfect-able) vessels of light; working through healing and rebirth; and, finally, becoming a whole and integrated person. Frankel writes conversationally and cuts to the chase in the first chapter: just as the universe was scattered in its inception, so are we like shattered vessels. Looking at our lives, we can relate to the Kaballistic paradigm and begin to love our imperfect selves while we work to reassemble our emotional parts into wholeness.
I've always found deciphering and distilling wisdom I can use from the Kaballah an esoteric and many-layered task. Similarly, the writings of Hassidic mystics have often seemed like they belong to another time. Frankel compares elements of our personal stories, the aspects which trouble or confuse us, with historical and mythical characters whose narratives parallel ours when viewed through a mystical prism. In my case, the death of my granddaughter, something I can't ever imagine "getting over" was addressed in the Hassidic perspective on an unexpected need to reconnect after loss.
Even if I weren't looking for a message I could specifically use, I would have found Sacred Therapy riveting for its success in making Jewish mysticism understandable and helpful in my not-very-organized efforts to get my own shattered psychic parts back into a lovely vessel.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very accessible distillation of the sacred Judaic literature, this book offers many practical insights that help the reader to apply the lessons and teachings of Classic Judaism to... Read morePublished 18 months ago by James
God is everywhere, especially in therapy. As a therapist I find that 99% of my clients are very spiritual people. Many great ideas in this book.Published on July 24, 2013 by Linda Thibodeau
This is a magnificent book. The author, Estelle Frankel is a gifted and brilliant spiritual teacher and guide. Her spiritual stories are profound and inspirational. Read morePublished on February 13, 2013 by Joan
This book is great. the message in it is clear, and I found it to be a fairly easy read. I would definitely recommend it to anyone.Published on December 20, 2012 by ben
I an era where nearly everyone claims to be teaching or studying the Kabbalah, Frankel is the real thing. Read morePublished on January 8, 2011 by Jonathan Groner
I would recommend this book to everyone especially Jews. This book is more than just a self help book. Read morePublished on December 5, 2009 by Leslie
As a non-Jew who nevertheless deeply sympathises with Judaism, I have found myself in a situation where I need to cope with a difficult point in my personal life. Read morePublished on November 13, 2009 by Tomas071109