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From There Shall You Seek, Rabbi Joseph Dov Soloveitchik (1978)

Man’s search for God and God’s search for man

by
David P. Goldman
September 17, 2013

Rabbi Soloveitchik (1903-1993), the towering intellectual figure of Modern Orthodoxy, ordained almost 2,000 rabbis over four decades of teaching at Yeshiva University. From There You Shall Seek, the most comprehensive and accessible statement of his thinking, appeared in Hebrew in 1978. It is a masterful introduction to traditional Judaism. For Jews trying to understand the Orthodox resurgence of the past decade, it is indispensable. The book is a stirring and impassioned statement: Man’s search for God and God’s search for man set in motion a great drama of attraction and repulsion, of loss and recovery, which Soloveitchik represents through the dialogue of lover and beloved in the Song of Songs. I fell off my chair—literally—reading an advance copy of the English translation. I got up and joined an Orthodox synagogue.

David P. Goldman, Tablet Magazine’s classical music critic, is the Spengler columnist for Asia Times Online, Senior Fellow at the London Center for Policy Studies, and the author of How Civilizations Die (and Why Islam Is Dying, Too).

David P. Goldman, Tablet Magazine’s classical music critic, is the Spengler columnist for Asia Times Online, Senior Fellow at the London Center for Policy Studies, and the author of How Civilizations Die (and Why Islam Is Dying, Too) and the new book You Will Be Assimilated: China’s Plan to Sino-Form the World.

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