Every investigation into the causes of the phenomena both of mind and matter was strictly forbidden, because the study of logic and metaphysics was regarded as injurious to devotional life. -from The Essenes The Essenes introduces us to the Judaic sect that contributed greatly to the spread of early Christianity. Drawing upon the Midrashim and the Talmud as well as the accounts of Pliny, Josephus, and other ancient writers, this tribute explores their rise and progress, their relationship to both Judaism and Christianity, and more. The Kabbalah is a guide to those wishing initiation into the mysteries of this esoteric doctrine and its extraordinary if veiled influence on Jewish culture over the centuries. Elementary but also comprehensive, it offers easy-to-understand explanations of matters of Jewish history and literature with which the lay reader may not be familiar. Here, in one volume, are two classic essays, dating from 1863 and 1864, on Jewish mysticism by one of the most prominent Hebrew scholars of the 19th century. Hebrew Massoretic scholar CHRISTIAN D. GINSBURG (1821-1914) was born in Poland but spent much of his literary life in England.
He is also the author of The Song of Songs and Coheleth and Introduction to the Massoretico-Critical Edition of the Hebrew Bible.