Thursday, January 24, 2008

New Seminal Work on Rav Klonymous Kalmish Shapiro; the Aish Kodesh

There is a great Rav in E"Y named Rabbi Tzvi Leshem. For those of you who can't get enough of all things Piseczna, CLICK HERE to download his doctoral dissertation on the holy Aish Kodesh, Rav Klonymous Kalmish Shapiro. (Update: the file is now being hosted at esnips to hopefully avoid the downloading problems.) It is 316 pages long, written in Hebrew, and is entitled, Between Messianism and Prophecy: Hasidism According to the Piaseczner Rebbe. You can also subscribe to Rav Leshem's weekly e-mail drasha by e-mailing him at juliezvi(at)

Here is Rav Leshem's biography, from the Nishmat website:

Rav Zvi grew up in Cleveland Ohio and Indianapolis Indiana. He earned a B.A. in History from Columbia University as well as a B.A. in Talmud. Making aliya with his wife Julie in 1979, he spent eight years in the Kollel of Yeshivat HaMivtar, at the same time attending shiurim of gedolim such as Rav Shaul Yisraeli zt"l and Rav Aharon Lichtenstein shlit"a. He was ordained by the Israeli Chief Rabbinate and certified to serve as a Rav Shechuna. He is also an ordained Sofer Sta"m and Baal Magia. Rav Zvi earned an M.A. in Jewish Philosophy from Touro College where he wrote his thesis on "The Spiritual System of the Piaseczner Rebbe". He holds a doctorate degree at Bar Ilan University in Chassidic Thought, and is considered an expert in the writings of the Piaseczner Rebbe, upon whom he has written and lectured extensively. Rav Zvi was also a Jerusalem Fellow, where his projects were on "Tolerance and Pluralism in Relations between Religious and Secular Jews", and on "The Translation of Chassidic Educational Philosophy to the Current Educational Landscape". In 1986 he travelled to the Soviet Union on a secret mission to train underground Torah teachers.

Rav Zvi has taught in many Yeshivot and programs for young women, both Israeli and English speakers. He has been at Nishmat since the first day the school opened, and has served for eleven years as Associate Dean, as well as having directed the Alisa Flatow Overseas Program for many years. He teaches most areas of Torah studies, specializing in Gamara, halacha, and machshava, primarally Chassidut. He is know for developing especially warm relationships with students, and is sought out for advice in a wide range of personal and spiritual issues.

Rav Zvi and Julie, a Judaica and functional potter and ceramics teacher, make their home in Efrat with their six children and cat. Rav Zvi also serves there as the Spiritual Leader of Congregation Shirat Shlomo. The warm and fun atmosphere of their home and at their shul make it an attractive place for Nishmat students to spend shabbat in a very special atmosphere.

-Dixie Yid

(Picture courtesy of

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Natan said...

Thanks for the link, I knew that his dissertation would surface sooner or later.

Anonymous said...

as i said in your poll, i cant get enough. thanks for this and i hope you keep um comming. you do good work

DixieYid (يهودي جنوبي) said...

natan, well here it is. Rabbi Leshem put the link in his weekly e-mail drasha.


Thank you very much for your chizuk and kind words!

-Dixie Yid

Anonymous said...

it seems that the file linked to is corrupted... if you have a working file of the dissertation, would it be possible for you to post it directly on your Blog for download? Many thanks.

DixieYid (يهودي جنوبي) said...

anon, I just tried it and saw the problem. read my update in the text of the post.

Anonymous said...

I got that far - the message I got when the download was complete is that the file is corrupt - if there's another location for it or if you can email the file to me I'd be most appreciative. Thanks

DixieYid (يهودي جنوبي) said...

Okay try again now. Gut voch1

-Dixie Yid

yitz said...

Dix: Reb Zvi is great, & my wife is zoche to work with him @ Nishmat! Does he know about your site?