By Marina Aptekman
Focusing totally on the shut examine of literary works provided within the extensive cultural and old context, Jacob's Ladder discusses the mirrored image of kabbalistic allegory in Russian literature and gives an in depth research of the evolution of the conception of Kabbalah in Russian realization. Aptekman investigates the questions of whilst, how and why Kabbalah has been utilized in Russian literary texts from Pre-Romanticism to Modernism and what specific function it performed within the better context of the Russian literary culture. the proper realizing of this liaison is helping the reader to elucidate many enigmatic pictures in Russian literary works of the final centuries and to appreciate the roots of a selected cultural falsification that performed a major function within the anti-Semitic mythology of the 20 th century.
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Additional info for Jacob’s Ladder: Kabbalistic Allegory in Russian Literature
This kind of interpretation is evident in a famous Russian Masonic hymn, known mostly as “a Masonic ode,” and written by Fyodor Kliucharev (1751–1822), one of the most devoted members of Novikov’s circle. Contemporaries often called Kliucharev a “Masonic court poet,” meaning that most of Kliucharev’s poems were written for special Masonic occasions. As a result, his writing uses typical Masonic imagery, which Kliucharev usually places within the boundaries of a well-established eighteenth-century poetic form, the ode.
These works contain lengthy commentaries on and quotations from earlier kabbalistic authors as well as substantial quotations from Sefer ha Zohar. These works, which have only recently been analyzed and classified, provide a completely new insight into the role of kabbalistic mysticism in Russian eighteenthcentury Freemasonic thought. 28 Novikov and some of the members of his circle shared the interest of the earlier Russian Masons and the German Rosicrucians in occult and hermetic studies. 29 Among the Masonic manuscripts found in Russian archives there is at least one that tries to explain the confusion between the mystical Kabbalah — 50 — K a b b a l is t i c A l l e g o r y i n Ei g hte e nt h - Ce nt u r y М as o ni c L i te r at u r e and alchemic pseudo-Kabbalah.
Had yet sprouted, the Lord formed man [Adam] from the dust [Adama] of the earth. ” The Torah (Philadelphia: The Jewish Publication of America Press, 1962). 27. Scholem, Major Trends, 195. 28. Even some Jews supported these ideas. ” David — 36 — Kabbalah Then and Now Ruderman, ed. Essential Papers on Jewish Culture in Renaissance and Baroque Italy (New York: New York University Press, 1992), 311. 29. Fore more on Agrippa of Nettesheim, see Die Cabbala des Heinrich Kornelius Agrippa von Nettesheim (Stuttgart, 1855); M.