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The Book of Yonah: Journey of the Soul

The Book of Yonah: Journey of the Soul
The Book of Yonah: Journey of the Soul
96 Pages
Author: Rabbi Moshe Schapiro
Only 2 Available
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The Book of Yonah/Jonah is one of the shortest in all of Scripture -- only forty-eight verses -- yet it can aptly be said that it is small in quantity but very large in content and meaning. Perhaps more than most of the sacred books, it obviously must be understood on more than one level.
The Sages liken Torah interpretation to a hammer shattering a rock; just as the rock’s fragments fly in many directions, so many teachings flash from each of the Torah’s words. This is certainly true of the Book of Yonah. The narrative surely must be understood as a historical account, but it has more to teach than bare facts. Many are the Book’s “fragments,” waiting to be grasped and understood: A prophet who seeks to flee from his Creator. A storm aimed like a laser beam at a single vessel. A man living inside a fish. A great city transforming itself overnight. A righteous prophet lamenting a dying plant, but not rejoicing over human survival. Many are the lessons rippling beneath the surface of Yonah’s straighforward prose.
Aderes Eliyahu, the Vilna Gaon’s classic commentary on the Scriptures, distills an ethical allegory from the Book. In this volume, Rabbi Moshe Schapiro adapts the Gaon’s profound, Kabbalistically-based work and presents its moving, inspirational and challenging message in terms that are understandable to every serious reader.
Indeed, in the Gaon’s reading, the Book of Yonah speaks to everyone; it tells us our own personal story -- the story of the human soul, installed in a body and on a planet that are inhospitable to its spiritual mission. And in telling us of the soul’s struggle and victory, it charts a course for us.
This is richly rewarding reading for all year round, but especially for the season of soul-searching and repentance that leads up to Yom Kippur.

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