This book deals with the nature and development of Jewish myth from the Talmudic period through Kabbalah to Hasidism. It describes the changes in this myth in its various stages and the external influences on it. The author shows that myth is in the essence of the Jewish religion and that, rather than being created out of external influences, Kabbalah is one of its manifestions. The book also deals with the related subject of Messianism, and delves into the special spiritual personalities of some messianic figures in Jewish history to show how myth was incarnate in them.
Yehuda Liebes teaches Jewish Mysticism in the Department of Jewish Thought at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He is the author of Studies in the Zohar, also published by SUNY Press.