Laitman: Kabbalah Revealed (2007)
A press release from last month announced Michael Laitman’s new book: Kabbalah Revealed: The Ordinary Person’s Guide to a More Peaceful Life. One of my favorite principles Kabbalah (and most religions I respect) teaches is humility. The author’s name in the press release is prefixed with “Dr.”, while on his own site and on Amazon it is prefixed with “Rav” and suffixed with “PhD”. This inconsistency made me assume that hem (or the people responsible for promotion) is more interested in the recognition that I would prefer. But as I not have read any of his books I maybe totally off here. Phrases like “word-renowned scholar” or “for the first time ever” make me think of self-promotion. I know that is it necessary, when works alone, but that is my point, why no major publisher picked up his tomes and offered help with more appropriate wording? (I am speaking from ignorance, there might be legitimate reasons, e.g. they want to publish it through their own organization, “Bnei Baruch World Center for Kabbalah Studies”. In my experience most major talents manage to get major support. He might have opted to stay in the somewhat closed world of orthodoxy.)
Based on the description half of the book, the first three chapters analyzes problems and the other half (three more chapters) offers solutions. The reasons for the crisis include our desires and rooted in our spirits. The previews of the book are more shy about the answers offered, i.e. no hints offered, I would need to read the book to have any idea. The 168 page book is offered for $4.95. It is available from kabbalahbooks.info now and from Amazon from next March.
As I am trying to collect all books in English on Kabbalah I was naturally curious of the selection at Kabbalahbooks.info. Right now only Laitman’s books are listed, albeit in multiple languages. There is one exception (Michael R. Kellogg’s Wondrous Wisdom), but its author is not even listed on the authors page. There only Laitman, his mentor Baruch Ashlag, and Ashlag’s father Yehuda Ashlag is listed. This genealogy defines the the Bnei Baruch line. Nevertheless the site is a good resource for this school. They also provide links to their other ventures including music, videos, TV, learning center.