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Document Details :
Title: Three Aspects of Scripture in Rabbi Nahman of Bratslav's Use of the Psalms
Author(s): SCHLEICHER, Marianne
Journal: Studies in Spirituality
Volume: 15 Date: 2005
To elucidate Rabbi Nahman’s use of the Book of Psalms in the manual haTikkun haKelali and in his tales, known as Sippurey Ma’asiyot, it seems constructive to recognise the composite function of scripture by differentiating between three scriptural aspects: the canonical, the holy and the sacred.
The canonical aspect enables scripture to be used as a storage place for and a symbol of society’s religious conceptions. The holy aspect, that mainly becomes apparent in ritual, has the effect on the believing participants that they perceive how scripture in a non-discursive manner strengthens their sense of belonging to the community. The sacred aspect enables the individual to communicate with the divine sender or messenger and to receive a proposal of a new, religious world view.
This article concludes that Nahman made intertextual references to the Psalter to bring the theology of the psalms to fruition in his own lifetime, at so many levels as possible, in order to legitimise his messianic theology of redemption as an innate part of Jewish religion.