Rabbi Norman Lamm and the Spirit of Chassidism – The longtime Yeshiva University leader, who died recently at the age of 92, placed Chassidic thought…

Posted By on June 24, 2020

Nachum Lamm, known asNorman Lamm, entered the rabbinate just as the second half of the twentiethcentury was getting underway. In 1951 he was ordained at the Rabbi IsaacElchanan Theological Seminary at Yeshiva University (YU), where he hadpreviously earned a degree in chemistry. In 1966 he would go on to complete aPhD in Jewish Philosophy at YUs Bernard Revel Graduate School. By this pointhe was already teaching at YU himself. In 1976 he was appointed theinstitutions third president, and he would continue as Chancellor and RoshYeshiva until his retirement in 2013. His impressive career, as an influentialrabbi and public intellectual, is inseparable from the institutionalization ofa distinctly American mode of Jewish living and thinking that is now generallyreferred to as Modern Orthodoxy. Rabbi Lamm passed away on May 31. He was 92.

In thinking about Lammand his intellectual legacy, there aretwo obvious elements that come to mind: 1) the ethos of Torah Umadda (loosely: Torah together with worldly knowledge)associated with Yeshiva University; and 2) his work on the ideal of Torah forTorahs sake as espoused by Rabbi Hayyim of Volozhin, the most influentialstudent of the Vilna Gaon. Yet, at the very center of the centrist ideologyarticulated by Lamm we find a third element, namely Chassidism, throughwhichas he put itJudaism experienced an infusion of vitality and relearnedthe principle of self-transformation and renewal.

The appreciation thatfollows reflects on Lamms personal reception of Chassidisms living heritage,the place of Chassidism in his scholarly work, his engagement with Chassidismin the fashioning of his famous derashot(sermons), and on Chassidism as his preferred model for developing therelationship between Torah and worldly knowledge.

Attention will also begiven to the interplay of resonance and dissonance that arises when we considerthe influence of Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, the Lubavitcher Rebbe, whose26th yahrtzeit will be marked thisweek. According to his son-in-law, Rabbi Mark DratchExecutive Vice Presidentof the Rabbinical Council of AmericaLamm viewed the Rebbe as one of those rareleaders who bore the weight of world Jewry on his shoulders. Dratch alsopointed to the importance of Lamms chassidic family background, saying thathe had a chassidic heart. As weshall see, Lamm himself was explicit about his desire to extend the Chassidicmode of heartfelt worship to the cognitive pursuits of the mind as well.

Both of Lamms parentswere born to Chassidic families; the atmosphere in my parents home, hewrote, was not hasidic in practice, yet it was filled with the lore and loveof Hasidism. Hispaternal grandfather, Yaakov Dovid Lamm, had been a rank-and-file chassid ofthe Belzer Rebbe; his maternal grandfather, Rabbi Yehoshuah Baumol (1880-1948),hailed from the Chassidic heartland of Galicia, and robustly exemplified thefusion of halachic mastery and spiritual piety that was his heritage. A recognizedprodigy, Rabbi Baumol had been appointed Rosh Yeshiva at the Chassidic court ofVizhnitz while still in his teen years, and after coming to New York in 1920 hebecame one of America's leading rabbinic authorities, admired for hisaristocratic grace and warm charisma as well as for his immense learning.

Among Lamms personallinks to the living legacy of Chassidism were also, in his words, two saintedThe seminal place ofChabad teachings in Rabbi Soloveitchiks intellectual world is evident from hisphilosophical treatisehasidic masters in whose modest synagogues I prayed in my youth, and from whomI learned the wonders, the charm, the mystery, and the teaching of Hasidism,Rabbi David Yitzchak Isaac Rabinowitz, the Skolier Rebbe (18961979),descendant of the Baal Shem Tov, and Rabbi Yisrael Elazar Hopstein, theKozhnitzer Rebbe (1898-1966), descendant of the Maggid of Kozhnitz.

Lamms maternalgrandfather, Rabbi Baumol, was a constant presence and a formative influenceduring the first 21 years of his life. It was he who initiated Lamm into therigorous creativity of Torah scholarship, and also into the profundity of theChassidic ethos. Marking the first yahrtzeit of his grandfather, Lamm wrote ofthe painful sentiment of having lost a part of myself.

Rabbi Lamms grandson,Rabbi Ari LammCEO of the Bnai Zion Foundationcommented that while some in the YU community tend to assume thatonly litvaks (heirs to Volohzinstradition of elite Talmudism) know how to learn, my grandfather never boughtinto that. He knew first hand that Chassidim were equally robust in their Torahscholarship. Moreover,his construction of a Chassidic model of TorahUmadda, which will be discussed below, is explicitly anchored in RabbiBaumols ethical will wherein he transmitted the principles by which he livedto the members of his family.

While it was Lamms firstgreat teacher who introduced him to Chassidism as a set of principles to liveby, it was his second great teacher who introduced him to Chassidism as a setof concepts to think with. The latter individual, of course, was Rabbi JosephB. Soloveitchik (1903-1993), scion of the dynasty of Volozhin and Brisk, andthe most eminent and influential member of the YU faculty. In Lamms eulogy forhis teacher, he stated that Rabbi Soloveitchiks affection for Habad, beginning with hischildhood exposure to Rabbi Shneur Zalman of Liadis Tanya, would remain with him to the end.

The seminal place ofChabad teachings in Rabbi Soloveitchiks intellectual world is evident from hisphilosophical treatise, Halakhic Man,which ostensibly defends a purely halachic approach to Jewish religiosity. Intruth, however, it draws deeply and explicitly on Tanya (referred to with the title Likkutei Amarim), and on the important compendium of Rabbi ShneurZalmans discourses, Likkutei Torah,to craft a sophisticated spiritual phenomenology according to which the twopersonas of the homo religiosus andthe cognitive man can cohere in a single individual.This was an expression of what Lamm described as the Ravs broader effort tobridge the worlds of emotion and reason, of Halakhah and Agadah, of Hasidismand Mitnagdism. As willbecome clear below, Lamm would continue his teachers path of synthesis.

Rabbi Lamm, center, sits beside Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik (left), in 1977.

In Halakhic Man, Rabbi Soloveitchik also cites Nefesh Ha-hayyim, the posthumously published treatise of his ownancestor, Rabbi Hayyim of Volozhin. A significant section of that work isdevoted to an explanation of the kabbalisitic concept of Tzimtzum (theprimordial contraction of the divine) and its significance for ourunderstanding of the relationship between Gd and the world. Yet when RabbiSoloveitchik takes up Tzimtzum as a central concern of his own religiousphenomenology, he makes it clear that I am making use of the interpretation ofthis concept as it is to be found in the teachings of Habad Hasidism. Thispoint is significant in the present context because in Lamms doctoraldissertationwritten under Rabbi Soloveitchiks tutelagehe took up thequestion of how Nefesh Ha-hayyim respondedto the ascent of Chassidism, and pointed out that some nuances of theinterpretation of Tzimtzum remained an enduring locus of differentiationbetween the respective paths of Volozhin and Chabad.

It was while working onhis doctorate that Lamm most deeply immersed himself in the study of Chabadtexts, especially Tanya and Likkutei Torah, and also engaged RabbiSoloveitchik on the substance of the texts he was studying.Lamm later recalled that Rabbi Soloveitchik knew Chabad thought very wellveryvery well. I would ask him a question sometimes about Chabad, regarding whichhe hadnt opened the Sefer Tanya inforty years, and he knew it cold. I was constantly amazed by it.

In his dissertation, andin subsequent works, Lamm argued that NefeshHa-hayyim was by no means an anti-Chassidic tract, as some have supposed,but was actually a significant gesture of reconciliation; an acceptance of theChassidic invitation to dialogue that he saw to be implicitly encoded in the Tanya. Rabbi Hayyims conciliatorytechnique, he argued, consisted of accepting the theological strictures,modes, and even vocabulary of Hasidism, especially that of Rabbi Shneur Zalman,but so reformulating them that the basic Mitnaggedic position is salvaged andelucidated. In his view, the contrast between the approach of the Vilna Gaonand his student, Rabbi Hayyim, could be expressed colloquially via thedistinction between responding to Chassidism with no, never! or with Yes,but.

This attentiveness to theways in which the vocabulary of Chassidism, especially as inscribed in theChabad corpus, was adopted by Rabbi Hayyim echoed many years later in aconversation between Lamm and Chabad of Alaskas Rabbi Yosef Greenberg. Whenthe latter pointed out that Halakhic Manrelied on Rabbi Shneur Zalman not only to describe the potency of mysticalfervor, but also to underscore the centrality of Torah study and cognition,Lamm agreed, saying that Rabbi Shneur Zalman created a new vocabulary andRabbi Soloveitchik had no choice but to use it.

A somewhat updatedversion of Lamms dissertation would eventually be published as Torah for Torahs Sake in the Works of RabbiHayyim of Volozhin and his Contemporaries.Following the 1972 publication of the Hebrew version of this book (Torah Lishmah), Lamm inscribed a copyLamm inscribed a copy and sent it to the Rebbe as a giftand sent it to the Lubavitcher Rebbe as a gift. In a letter penned to expresshis thanks, the Rebbe noted that this is a topic of interest to me, all themore so since in several places the book deals with issues that stood at thecenter of the controversy between the Chassidim and the Mitnagdim during thatperiod.

From this point onwardLamm would continue to send new publications and the Rebbes secretariat wouldreciprocate by sending Lamm new publications from Chabads Kehot PublicationSociety. Perusing these volumes, Lamm often penned letters sharing hisreflections with his close friend, Rabbi Alter B. Metzger, a Chabad chassid whoearned a PhD from Columbia University and was a longtime professor on the facultyof YUs Stern College for Women. The latter would sometimes send Lamms glossesin to the Rebbe. Metzgers son, Rabbi Yehoshua Metzger, recalls that the Rebbewould sometimes respond with his own notes and comments which were then sharedwith Lamm.

Having originally enteredthe scholarly field of Chassidism from a more comparative perspective, Lammwould go on to concentrate more closely on the teachings of the great Chassidicmasters, rather than on the more peripheral questions of conflict and reconciliation.Before his appointment as President of YU, he offered courses on Chassidicthought to undergraduates within the more informal framework of YUs ErnaMichael College (now Isaac Breuer College) of Hebraic Studies. This project wasgiven lasting expression in his capacious anthology, The Religious Thought of Hasidism: Text and Commentary (KtavPublishing House, 1999), which has yet to be surpassed in terms of its topicalscope, its diversity of source material, and its organizational coherence.

Lamms scholarship iscertainly in dialogue with the work of academic scholars. Yet, rather thanfollow a path of pure academia he instead chose the vocation of a communalrabbi, a public intellectual and a builder of institutions. Over time his workmoved from the realm of critical analysis into the realm of constructivephilosophy and theology, and it was aimed at a much broader audience.

His 2002 book, The Shema: Spirituality and Law in Judaism, is a fine example of his scholarly move fromanalysis to construction. As the subtitle intimates, Lamm saw the Shema prayeras the locus of ultimate synthesis between the objective obligations of thehalachah and the subjective arousal of religious feeling; the very tension thathe understood to be at the heart of the struggle between the Chassidim and theMitnagdim. Taking up Judaisms most fundamental expression of religiouscommitment and identity, he argued that when it comes to the Shema eachsidespirit and lawshows understanding of the other. While spiritualitydefers to law as to when and how the Shema is to be read, the law not onlyaccommodates but requires spiritual intention and defines its minimumexpression.

Though The Shema draws from the entire span of Judaismslegal and interpretive tradition, it is the great Chassidic masters who providethe books ideological and methodological backbone. The first part culminateswith a call to bring the radical Chassidic understanding that only Gd trulyexists (whichwas accepted, on Lamms account, by Rabbi Hayyim of Volozhin) from the realm oftheological principle and spiritual experience into the realm of action. Thisbelief, he wrote, should become a value that governs our conduct, energizesthe worshiper to spiritual ambition, and motivates an active program towardsrealizing the existential unity of humanity.

The second part of thebook turns to the commandment you shall love the L-rd your Gd (Devarim 6:5),dwelling most centrally on two Chassidic masters who both seem to have had aspecial place in the authors heart: Rabbi Shneur Zalman of Liadi and RabbiZadok Hakohen of Lublin. Ultimately, however, the purpose of this work is notcareful analysis and differentiation but rather holistic integration andconstruction. Many disparate voices, including some from far beyond theChassidic canon, are elegantly marshaled to enunciate Lamms own thinking.

During his years as acongregational rabbi, from the 1950s to the mid-1970s, Lamms sermons or derashot richly exhibited hisappreciation not only of Chassidisms religious ideas but also of theinterpretive creativity and literary craft displayed by the Chassidic masters. Here Lammis at his most eclectic. In addition to the influences already mentioned, hedraws on such luminaries as Rabbi Elimelech of Lizensk, Rabbi Abraham JoshuaHeschel (The Apter Rav), Rabbi Levi Yitzchak of Berditchev. These derashot are also notable for theparticular ways in which they reflect the sichot(talks) of the Lubavitcher Rebbe, who he would describe as the mostimportant Jewish manhig (leader) ofmy lifetime.

This letter was sent by Rabbi Lamm to the Lubavitcher Rebbewho he addresses as teacher of all Israelin 1972, along with a copy of the Hebrew edition of his book, Torah Lishmah: It will be a great honor for me, and this will be my reward for all my toil, if your honor could devote a few precious moments to take a look at my work especially since many issues are relevant to the teachings of Chabad

The Rebbes influence ismost clear in a sermon dating from 1971, which is essentially a paraphrase ofan edited talk by the Rebbe that had been published, in pamphlet form, exactlyone year prior. Inaddition to the Torah content of his talks, the Rebbe also provided a model forthe application of Chassidisms spiritual teachings and ethos to the pressingpublic issues of the day. As Ari Lamm put it, my grandfather really admiredthe Rebbes sense of public spiritedness, and was intrigued by his involvementin the political life of America and Israel. As an example, he pointed toLamms 1976 call for more religious expression in the public life of thiscountry, even in the public schools. Echoing the Rebbes decades long campaignfor the cultivation of a shared non-denominational religiosityin schools, publicspaces, and public lifehe declared that we need not only the politicalclarion-call and the trumpeting of new programs, but also genuine prayer andawareness of a Higher Power.

It is not only Lammsposition that is notable here, but also that he ensconced this discussion ofpublic policy within a wider Torah discussion of the spiritual significanceHe ensconced the discussion of public policy within a wider Torah discussion of the spiritual significance of prayerwith which prayer must be endowed. Weighing in on a contemporaneous debate overwhether a certain presidential candidate was too religious, Lamm turned to adiscussion between two sages of the Mishnah to emphasize the centrality ofheartfelt prayer when faced with personal or collective crisis, and to chastisethose who were comfortable with religious gestures but not with religiousmeaning: It is too much for the devotees of the cult of the secular to abidethe symbolism of the highest office in the land being occupied not only by apresident who prays, but by a praying president.This is strikingly similar to the way that the Rebbe's discussions of publicpolicy were intertwined within his broader Torah talks.

On another occasion,discussing the kulturkampf between religious and secularist factions inIsrael, Lamm spoke of the Law of Return and upheld the Rebbes insistencethat halachah be enshrined as the final arbiter of who is a Jew:

The Who is a Jew issue is another one inwhich the religious side has the far greater merit This represents a realproblem, and one must agree with the Lubavitcher Rebbes major thrust indemanding an amendment to the law (adding the words according to theHalakhah), even if one is willing to question some of his techniques orpolitical ramifications and demands. We are here speaking of our very identityas Jews, and the point is therefore a profoundly psychological and spiritualone, as well as a legal and technical one.

In 1988, however, Lammdistanced himself from certain Hasidic elements who, in his words, have setthe who is a Jew question as the highest priority of political action. Bycontrast, he complained, our camp needs an injection of courage right now.Lamm clearly found the Rebbes principled position compelling. Yet this wasevidently counterbalanced by his desire to also cultivate a moderation thatwould not be confused with indecisiveness.

In other derashot during his years at the pulpit,Lamm took note of the ways in which Chabad seemed to be uniquely attuned to thespiritual seeking and spiritual needs of Jews who were in various waysdisenfranchised from, or disenchanted with, their own heritage. This applied toyoung Jews in America who were, as a result, now looking not to a Marcuse, notto Leary, but ( ),to the Lubavitcher Rebbe for new inspiration.In a talk on the situation of Russian-Jewish immigrants in Israel he expressedvexation that their absorption into Israeli society was for the most part anentirely secular enterprise: Other than a single ulpan in Kfar Chabad and oneor two others, he noted, all others are in secularist and anti-religious centers.

After returning from atrip to Israel in 1974, Lamm reported approvingly on the success of Chabadsongoing tefillin campaign, and applauded other Jewish organizations for theirparticipation. Responding to those who would devalue religious arousal born ofcrisis, Lamm quipped, better foxhole religion than penthouse agnosticism. Thischampionship of authenticity born of adversity brings to mind an original andcreative interpretation that Rabbi Lamm offered at the conclusion of derashah delivered the following year:

Permit me to conclude with my owninterpretation of those four first words, adamki yakriv mikem (Vayikra 1:2lit. a man, from you, who brings asacrifice). My explanation is: only one who is ready to give of himself, mikem, can be considered an adam a real man, a genuine humanbeing, an authentic mentsch.

In the same derashah he praised the Rebbeschassidim for practicing love and not hate, and for eliciting admirationfrom many diverse circles for their work, even if not always for their policiesand politics.

The influence of earlierChassidic masters on Lamms derashotis clear; they provided the model for the authentic enmeshment of Torah inpersonal life. But it was specifically the Rebbe who led the way in extendingthat authentic enmeshment to the realm of policy and public life.

Rabbi Lamm (left) with Chabad representative to Alaska Rabbi Yosef Greenberg during Lamm's Summer 2001 visit to Greenberg's Chabad House. Lamm spoke admiringly of the "incalculable" and "historic" contributions of the Rebbe's emissaries to strengthening Judaism worldwide.

In an important 1986essay Lamm articulated his preference for the appellation Centrist Orthodoxyover Modern Orthodoxy. He made it clear that he was less interested inmodernity and more interested in moderation.Moderation, he wrote, issues from a broad Weltanschauung or world viewrather than from tunnel vision.Accordingly, his ideological project was to build a coherent space at thecenter wherein different interpretations of Jewish tradition could beTorah and worldly wisdom should be mutually enhancingbalanced together in harmony, even if they did not necessarily agree. Torah andworldly wisdom (Torah Umadda), helikewise argued, should not be weighed against each other, but should rather beseen as mutually enhancing, symbiotic or synergistic.

The latter argument, ofcourse, was given its fullest treatment in his 1989 book, Torah Umadda: The Encounter of Religious Learning and Worldly Knowledgein the Jewish Tradition. This work draws on six different strands of Jewishthought to construct and appraise six models of the relationship between Torahand worldly knowledge. These are: 1) the rationalist model associated withMaimonides; 2) the cultural model associated with Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch;3) the mystical model associated with Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook; 4) theinstrumentalist model associated with the Vilna Gaon; 5) the inclusionarymodel, which is based on a reading of Maimonides via Rabbi Hayyim of Volozhin;and 6) the Chassidic model, which extends the worship of Gd to every area oflife, and by extension to every intellectual arena.

As David Shatz has noted,Lamm concludes his analysis by highlighting the advantages of the Chassidicmodel, and by drawing its implications for education.

Chassidism, Lamm writes,provides

an overarching religious vision of a worldbursting with the potential and promise of holiness, yearning for theredemptive touch of the sanctifying soul, and the consequent bending of allones talents, propensities, physical needs, emotional fulfillments, andcognitive gestures to the service of the Holy one, so that every single facetof ones total being becomes an offering of love to ones Maker Torah Umadda thus becomes just aspecific application of a much broader religious principle.

What Lamm calls for hereis not a messy modernity in which a multiplicity of competing ideas and idealslive together uncomfortably. Nor are we left with a pragmatic truce between thesacred Torah on the one hand and the secular sciences on the other. We arerather left with a vision for a Chassidic sacralization that must ultimatelypervade and transform the pursuit of worldly knowledge too; nothing is leftwithin the realm of the secular.

It is striking that, bothin structure and in substance, Lamms examination of the relationship betweenTorah and worldly knowledge is prefigured in a letter by the Rebbe, penned in1949 and published in 1977. Instructure, six categories of permissible study of worldly knowledge areoutlined. In substance, the sixth category is distinctly Chassidic in itsexpansive scope, and is built on a close reading of a passage from Rabbi ShneurZalman of Liadis Tanya, Chapter 8.

A letter Rabbi Lamm sent to the Rebbe in honor of the Rebbes 75th birthday, wherein he expresses his prayerful hope that the Rebbe would merit many more years to disseminate the wellsprings of his teachings to the outside.

Broadly speaking, RabbiShneur Zalman places the study of worldly wisdom in the same category as otherpermissible activities that do not have the sanctity of a mitzvah. Engaging insuch activities for ones personal gratification, rather than in intentionalservice of Gd, drags the soul into the realm of the unholy. Yet suchactivities are not irredeemable; they can later become encompassed in the realmof holiness if one subsequently draws on these activities to serve Gd. Forexample, kosher food that later gives a person strength to pray becomessacralized, even if it was initially eaten for personal gratification; worldlyknowledge that later informs the understanding of a Torah topic likewisebecomes sacralized, even if it was initially studied for personalgratification. If,however, such activities are intentionally engaged as an instrument of divineworship then they are immediately encompassed in the realm of holiness.

Had the discussion in Tanya concluded at this point, we wouldWorldly knowledge that later informs the understanding of a Torah topic becomes sacralizedbe left with a version of what Lamm called the instrumentalist model,embellished with a coherent mystical theorization that renders it vastly morerobust. But, as the Rebbe points out in his 1949 letter, Rabbi Shneur Zalmandoes not stop there. In the specific case of worldly knowledge he explicates afurther license that apparently does not depend on a specific instrumental intention, but requires only that one knows how to apply them in the serviceof Gd or for [the study of] His Torah. This, he adds, was the reason ofMaimonides and Nachmanides, of blessed memory, and their coterie, who engagedin such study.

The example of Maimonidesis important, the Rebbe argues, because Maimonides was initially supported byhis wealthy brother. Already in that early period he undertook the study ofmedicine, even though he did not yet have an instrumental need to earn hisliving as a physician. This is because Maimonidies, and others like him, hadthe sort of knowledge that subjects all elements of life and all forms ofwisdom to what Lamm terms an overarching religious vision.

Accordingly, in embracingthe Chassidic model of Torah UmaddaLamm seems to be echoing the Rebbe: Only a Maimonidean sort of visionaryknowledge allows one to perceive how all intellectual activities can beenfolded within the central project of serving Gd and studying His Torah.

This agreement, however,only went so far. Lamms divergence from the Rebbes view can be discerned intheir respective discussions of the ways in which modern science has uncovereda greater degree of unity in our understanding of nature. As the Rebbe put it:

In the past it was thought that each of thenatural forces was a distinct power onto itself, and that the materiality ofeach entity in the world is compounded from many diverse elements. But the morethe development of worldly knowledge progresses, the more we come to recognizethat the multiplicity and differentiation in the formation of the elements isonly an external function to the point that it is recognized that the essenceof the worlds being is comprised of the unionof the two constituents; quantity [matter] and quality [energy].

Lamm similarly wrote thatthe theme of divine unity at the core of the Shema suggests intriguing parallels to the structure ofcontemporary science. I haveitalicized the word parallels because it underscores that Lamm thoughtlargely in terms of distinct, competing and parallel valuese.g. law andspirituality, Torah and worldly knowledgewhich need to somehow be synthesized.

The Rebbe, by contrast,thought in terms of an axiomatic singularity, according to which everythingmust ultimately be viewed as emanating from a single source; all perceivedcontradictions fade away once their essence is discovered. From thisperspective, the new unifying orientation of science does not simply parallelthe unifying orientation of Chassidic teachings, but is rather a derivativethereof:

The revelation of the inner dimension of theTorah results in the developmentofworldly knowledgeas a matter ofcourse (memeila) It reveals theunity of Gd in the world to the point that the world itself becomestransparent to the unity of Gd

Another importantdeparture from the Rebbes approach is a more practical one. The Rebbe made itclear that the fundamental correspondence between Torah and science hasnothing to do with the question of studying in college or university, or thelike. Among other considerations, this was rooted in the fact that the studyof science in such institutions is not based on an axiomatic vision of divinesingularity, but to the contrary, on axiomatically atheistic assumptions.Science can be synthesized with Torah; secularism cannot.

This practicalconsideration aside, the above distinction between singularity and synthesismight be aligned with Lamms own distinction between the divine perspective (mitzido) and the human perspective (mi-tzideinu).Lamm once wrote of the latter, what this perspective loses in the realm ofpure unity it gains in the vitality of dynamic relationship.

For Rabbi Nachum (Norman)Lamm, this was not simply a lofty ideal to write about, but one that he forgedinto a decades-long path of personal striving for the public good. Histeaching, his publications, and his leadership all leave an indelibleimprint.

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Rabbi Norman Lamm and the Spirit of Chassidism - The longtime Yeshiva University leader, who died recently at the age of 92, placed Chassidic thought...

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