R. Nachman of Tshe'erin's Kuntres Inyan ha-Hishtahut

Alexandra Mandelbaum

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The focus of this article is the Kuntres 'Inyan ha-Hishtahut al Kivrei Zaddikim (A Pamphlet about the Matter of Prostration on the Graves of the Righteous) by R. Nachman Goldstein of Tshe'erin (1825-1894). My goal is to show how this short pamphlet contributed to the formation and development of one of the central traditions of Bratslav Hasidim: The annual pilgrimage to the grave of R. Nachman of Bratslav in Uman on Rosh HaShanah, the Jewish New Year. This core Bratslav practice keeps Bratslav Hasidism alive and vibrant and serves to expand its ranks. The Kuntres advances the idea of the kibbutz hakadosh (holy gathering) as an essential Bratslav ritual. Later, when historical forces made it impossible to travel to Uman, Bratslav Hasidim in Poland transformed Uman into an object of spiritual longing. This article tells the story of the connection between the pamphlet, theology and history in Bratslav Hasidism.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)116-135
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Jewish Studies
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • History
  • Religious studies
  • Literature and Literary Theory


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