Ben: Sonship and Jewish Mysticism by Moshe Idel
“Moshe Idel increasingly is seen as having achieved the eminence of Gershom Scholem in the study of Jewish mysticism. Ben, his book on the concept of sonship in Kabbalah, is an extraordinary work of scholarship and imaginative surmise. If an intellectual Judaism is to survive, then Idel becomes essential reading, whatever your own spiritual allegiances.”-Harold Bloom, Sterling Professor of Humanities, Yale University While many aspects of sonship have been analyzed in books on Judaism, this book, Moshe Idel’s magnum opus, constitutes the first attempt to address the category of sonship in Jewish mystical literature as a whole. Idel’s aim is to point out the many instances where Jewish thinkers resorted to concepts of sonship and their conceptual backgrounds, and thus to show the existence of a wide variety of understandings of hypostatic sons in Judaism. Through this survey, not only can the mystical forms of sonship in Judaism be better understood, but the concept of sonship in religion in general can also be enriched.