Chapter

:Hasidic Trance

in Shamanic Trance in Modern Kabbalah

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print May 2011 | ISBN: 9780226282077
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226282060 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226282060.003.0005
:Hasidic Trance

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This chapter elaborates the altered forms of perception recorded in Hasidic accounts of trance. It argues that Louise Child's evaluation that “the tantric Buddhist engagement with dreams, visions and trance states is not a peripheral activity within the tradition, but one which illuminates a number of its core tensions and concerns” is equally valid for Hasidism. Disassociative experiences of loss of sense of self in prayer were perhaps the most central Hasidic practice. Transmission in trance is associated with the classical theme of divestment of corporeality and more generally to the transformation of physical being. The ongoing interest in trance states in the Haredi world indicates the growing dialogue between hypnotic and mystical practitioners, and the essential continuity between classical and contemporary concerns in Jewish mystical life in spite of the massive changes that have taken place in the Kabbalistic world during the last century.

Keywords: trance; Hasidism; transmission; Haredi; Jewish mystical life; Kabbalistic; Hasidic accounts

Chapter.  8906 words. 

Subjects: Judaism and Jewish Studies

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