1814), who viewed himself as an emissary of the Gra in the anti-Chasidic crusade, published attacks on Chasidism accusing the movement of claiming its founder was a "divine man," whose teachings obviated the need for studying Talmud.
There seems to be a relationship between Passover--with its yearning for Elijah, herald of the messianic era--and certain key events in the Gra's war against Chasidism.
And how would it have influenced the development of Chasidism
, which arose among other things in opposition to rabbinic exclusiveness in the interpretation of God-Man relations?
Dik's in-laws were staunch Chasidim, while Dik himself despised Chasidism, regarding it as a gross superstition, almost akin to idolatry.
Militantly rationalistic, Dik was convinced early that the twin curses of Jewish life in Eastern Europe were Chasidism and the refusal of Jews to acquire Western education.
Samuel noted, for example, how the Jewish "fossil" had gone on to produce the Talmud, Yiddish language and literature, a Maimonides and Spinoza, Chasidism
, a revival of Hebrew as the language of daily communication in its old-new homeland, and, through Zionism, a reborn national life.
Berger mentions four other reasons for the lack of Orthodox support for his position, which he readily answers: 1) this messianic belief is not so terrible; Chasidism
would be threatened if Chasidim were told not to believe what their Rebbe told them; 3) the fight against Chabad will be difficult.
Another important composition is the large-scale symphonic work Ha-Nosei Ha-Nitzchi ("The Eternal Theme"), which owes its birth to the composer's interest in Chasidism
This an account of what Ehrenburg describes as a "real Tzaddik," Reb Yosele from Skvernovic in Poland, and while there are some inaccuracies in his description of Chasidism
, this is an affectionate portrait of the Tzaddik.
The Ba'al Shem Tov, founder of Chasidism
and one of our great sages, who lived in 18th-century Poland, once said: "Forgetfulness leads us into exile.
Norman Lamm maintains that Chasidism
, in particular, relates to nature: