The complete title of the book would include its subtitle, “Discourses on Chasidic Thought.”
It is actually just one of four books that its translators, the late Yehuda Hanegbi, saw as an ongoing series. Four volumes were published.
The series began with The Long Shorter Way: Discourses on Chasidic Thought.
In The Long Shorter Way, Yehuda Hanegbi transcribed and edited Rabbi Steinsaltz’s teachings, with each of the chapters of the Tanya as Rabbi Steinsaltz’s point of departure for the dazzling, profound ideas that fill the book.
This book was followed by Rabbi Steinsaltz’s The Sustaining Utterances: Discourses on Chasidic Thought, based on additional writings of the author of the Tanya.
The third book by Rabbi Steinsaltz is The Candle of God: Discourses on Chasidic Thought. (I admit that it is my favorite of the four).
And finally In the Beginning: Discourses on Chasidic Thought. It is from this book that the excerpts these past few weeks have come.
These four books have allowed me to “attend” Rabbi Steinsaltz’s Jerusalem classes on Chasidic and Kabbalistic thought through the skilled ears and eyes, and translating gifts of Yehuda Hanegbi.
The unusually high volume of feedback on these excerpts from readers and subscriber of this blog has been notable.
Here’s one last excerpt for now to end the week and greet Shabbat:
Rabbi Steinsaltz writes:
“When a person makes something of himself and does not nullify himself before the Torah, his learning is of little consequence.