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Sipurei Masiyos, Rebbe Nachman of Breslov (1816)

Blissed-out cosmic longing to connect with the spiritual universe

by
Batya Ungar-Sargon
September 17, 2013

This collection of stories told by Rebbe Nachman of Breslov was first printed in 1816 by Rebbe Nachman’s follower Reb Nosson Sternharz. A cross between rabbinic midrash and Kafka-esque parable, Rebbe Nachman (or Reb Nosson) makes liberal use of heroes’ journeys and elements of romance, with the stories designed to inspire a cosmic kind of longing. Both Jewish in their thematization of exile and universal in their focus on alienation, the stories are long. And like any good Jewish story, one often wonders halfway through what this is all about.

Batya Ungar-Sargon is a freelance writer who lives in New York. Her Twitter feed is @bungarsargon.

Batya Ungar-Sargon is a freelance writer who lives in New York. Her Twitter feed is @bungarsargon.

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