Heschel's Subtitles: Its Meaning For Modern Man

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From its biblical origin to its modern expression, there are little other practices of Judaism that have gathered as much attention as the Sabbath. Abraham Joshua Heschel’s The Sabbath subtitles “Its Meaning for Modern Man,” captures a series of such attempts. Heschel is profound in his understanding of the meaning of time, holiness and the soul in the Jewish experience, particularly about how it relates to the Sabbath. He is enraptured in fascination as he writes about the exhilarating possibilities opening up to humans as they enter into the time of peace, joy and holiness on the Sabbath. Heschel thinks of the religious experience in terms of time and space. He regards time as more important than space, and reminds us that “the Bible is more concerned with time than with space. It sees the world in the dimension of time” (Heschel 6). According to Heschel, “the God of Israel was the God of events: the Redeemer from slavery, the Revealer of the Torah, manifesting Himself in…show more content…
Time gains its significance over space in that it is a “means” of attaining holiness. “Time is the presence of God in the world of space, and it is within time that we are able to sense the into of all things” (Heschel ). Heschel wishes to emphasize that “holiness is not an unearthly concept” (Heschel 16). Anything in the universe that obeys God’s command to exist is holy; by existing, humanity is in “contact with His will” (Heschel 19). Heschel is quite clear that “man is the source and the initiator of holiness in this world” (Heschel). It could be interpreted to mean that Heschel sees time as a means of attaining holiness, where it is the innate presence of the divine will being accomplished in the life of creation. The Sabbath is the point where humanity sanctifies time and the individual transforms the self into a state in which he or she communes with the

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