When the first volume of Rabbi Steinsaltz’s commentary on the Tanya (Opening the Tanya: Discovering the Moral and Mystical Teachings of a Classic Work of Kabbalah) was published, he was interviewed about “pop-Kabbalah” and said:
“Personally, I am not for this new Kabbalah trend, I think it is cheap and I think it presents a danger.
Not that people are learning too much Kabbalah, but that they are focusing only on the mystery and secret and magic and don’t address how people should change or become more Jewish.
Kabbalah is not a gimmick, it is something holy and serious and it needs much more than a smattering of knowledge.
Imagine taking a six-week course in neurosurgery and hanging up a shingle. It is not only fraudulent, but dangerous.”
–Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz
InsideOut Magazine and L’Chaim Weekly, July 2004