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Turning Judaism Outwards: A Biography of the Rebbe, Menachem Mendel Schneerson

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Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson (1902-1994), the Lubavitcher Rebbe, took an insular Chasidic group that was almost decimated by the Holocaust and transformed it into one of the most influential and controversial forces in world Jewry. This superbly crafted biography draws on recently uncovered documents and archives of personal correspondence, painting an exceptionally hu Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson (1902-1994), the Lubavitcher Rebbe, took an insular Chasidic group that was almost decimated by the Holocaust and transformed it into one of the most influential and controversial forces in world Jewry. This superbly crafted biography draws on recently uncovered documents and archives of personal correspondence, painting an exceptionally human and charming portrait of a man who was well known but little understood. With a sharp attention to detail and an effortless style, Chaim Miller takes us on a soaring journey through the life, mind and struggles of one of the most interesting religious personalities of the Twentieth Century. "Only truly great biographers have been able to accomplish what Chaim Miller has with this book... I am awed by his work, and am now even more awed than ever before by the Rebbe's personality and prodigious accomplishments." -Rabbi Dr. Tzvi Hersh Weinreb, Executive Vice President Emeritus, Orthodox Union; Editor-in-Chief, Koren-Steinsaltz Talmud "A riveting biography.... this will prove to be a fascinating read even for those distant from Chabad or who knew little about this dominant figure in Jewish life." Malcolm Hoenlein, Executive Vice Chairman, Conference of Presidents of Major American


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Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson (1902-1994), the Lubavitcher Rebbe, took an insular Chasidic group that was almost decimated by the Holocaust and transformed it into one of the most influential and controversial forces in world Jewry. This superbly crafted biography draws on recently uncovered documents and archives of personal correspondence, painting an exceptionally hu Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson (1902-1994), the Lubavitcher Rebbe, took an insular Chasidic group that was almost decimated by the Holocaust and transformed it into one of the most influential and controversial forces in world Jewry. This superbly crafted biography draws on recently uncovered documents and archives of personal correspondence, painting an exceptionally human and charming portrait of a man who was well known but little understood. With a sharp attention to detail and an effortless style, Chaim Miller takes us on a soaring journey through the life, mind and struggles of one of the most interesting religious personalities of the Twentieth Century. "Only truly great biographers have been able to accomplish what Chaim Miller has with this book... I am awed by his work, and am now even more awed than ever before by the Rebbe's personality and prodigious accomplishments." -Rabbi Dr. Tzvi Hersh Weinreb, Executive Vice President Emeritus, Orthodox Union; Editor-in-Chief, Koren-Steinsaltz Talmud "A riveting biography.... this will prove to be a fascinating read even for those distant from Chabad or who knew little about this dominant figure in Jewish life." Malcolm Hoenlein, Executive Vice Chairman, Conference of Presidents of Major American

30 review for Turning Judaism Outwards: A Biography of the Rebbe, Menachem Mendel Schneerson

  1. 5 out of 5

    Sara Goldenberg

    First of all, Rabbi Miller is just incredible. Anything he's involved in, is going to be something super special. If you can ever hear him speak or read what he's written, you're in for a treat. Now, on to the book. I expected a lot from it, and it did not disappoint. Pictures. Footnotes galore. Tidbits and facts that I never heard before, and make life ever so much richer to know. It paints a clear picture of Lubavitch, and not just from Ye Olden Days, but relates to current times as well. Parts First of all, Rabbi Miller is just incredible. Anything he's involved in, is going to be something super special. If you can ever hear him speak or read what he's written, you're in for a treat. Now, on to the book. I expected a lot from it, and it did not disappoint. Pictures. Footnotes galore. Tidbits and facts that I never heard before, and make life ever so much richer to know. It paints a clear picture of Lubavitch, and not just from Ye Olden Days, but relates to current times as well. Parts of it just flow, like a story, but it's real - so real - that you think you're truly part of the inner circle. The part about the Previous Rebbes funeral ... was so haunting. Read it with a box of tissues! The cliché - I laughed, I cried, it became a part of me - is a cliché because it's true. This book is truly part of me. I am so much more informed about Lubavitch now. THANK YOU RABBI MILLER!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Rivkah Green-hoek

    After having read the other great book about the Lubavitcher leader, titled Rebbe, I thought nothing new could be learned. But Chaim Miller came with different aspects of the life of the great genius. It showed at the one hand the longing for a simple retreated life but once being convinced to accept the leadership he did so in full force, making the Chabad Movement strong spread around the whole globe. Not only that but making all of his emissaries leaders of their own, independent of him, maki After having read the other great book about the Lubavitcher leader, titled Rebbe, I thought nothing new could be learned. But Chaim Miller came with different aspects of the life of the great genius. It showed at the one hand the longing for a simple retreated life but once being convinced to accept the leadership he did so in full force, making the Chabad Movement strong spread around the whole globe. Not only that but making all of his emissaries leaders of their own, independent of him, making their own decisions becoming influential. They have become indeed his heritage. The author described in details with examples of several personal anecdotes the enormous knowledge in many fields, apart from Judaism, in education, in the military, science and many more. We learn how he advised or tried to do so the famous leaders of the world and Israel. How he was concerned with every Jew and Gentiles as well about their personal lives and trying to advance the spirituality on earth. He answered the thousands of letters he received on a monthly if not weekly basis. I wouldn't call it a biography but a very historical document, clearly but sophistical written.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Stan

    This biography of the last Lubavitcher (Chabad) Rebbe is well written and for the most part quite interesting. It sometimes lapses into a kind of listing of events that don't necessarily give us much insight, but still overall the book gives us a good overview of the rebbe's life and career and how that affected his followers and others. It is pretty worshipful towards the rebbe, but without bringing up (lightly) some controversies. In general, however, it is quite informative. While not recentl This biography of the last Lubavitcher (Chabad) Rebbe is well written and for the most part quite interesting. It sometimes lapses into a kind of listing of events that don't necessarily give us much insight, but still overall the book gives us a good overview of the rebbe's life and career and how that affected his followers and others. It is pretty worshipful towards the rebbe, but without bringing up (lightly) some controversies. In general, however, it is quite informative. While not recently, I've had a fair amount of interaction with Chabad, an most of it was positive. I liked their action, but was (and am) incapable to giving myself over to their belief system. Anyway, for those interested in an important religious phenomenon of the 20th century, this book is a satisfying read.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Gabriel Kaufman

    This is the single greatest book on who The Rebbe really was. In order to get a real glimpse into the greatest leader of the 21st century it is important to get the perspective of one of his followers.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Shuey Mirkin

    The absolute best book on a fascinating and hugely influential figure. Even if you have nothing to do with Chabad or Judaism, this is an inspiring book about a man who lived completely for other people, and accomplished tremendous things in the face of tremendous adversity.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Terry Feix

    Excellent biography of Menachem Schneerson, the 7th Lubavitcher Rebbe

  7. 5 out of 5

    Asi Spiegel

    I was very impressed by this book for many reasons. The story of the Rebbe's life and teachings is written in a captivating way. The author researched the topic thoroughly and the footnotes are very helpful. Anyone who is interested in the Rebbe's life will benefit immensely from reading this book. Even those who consider themselves knowledgeable about the topic will discover some new insights and references. Much more to say... I was very impressed by this book for many reasons. The story of the Rebbe's life and teachings is written in a captivating way. The author researched the topic thoroughly and the footnotes are very helpful. Anyone who is interested in the Rebbe's life will benefit immensely from reading this book. Even those who consider themselves knowledgeable about the topic will discover some new insights and references. Much more to say...

  8. 5 out of 5

    Lori Ben-ezra

    Don't be turned away by this book's thickness. It is an easy to read, thoroughly enjoyable biography of a 20th century spiritual leader. There is so much to learn from the Rebbe and his biography provides insight into his leadership and global vision. Don't be turned away by this book's thickness. It is an easy to read, thoroughly enjoyable biography of a 20th century spiritual leader. There is so much to learn from the Rebbe and his biography provides insight into his leadership and global vision.

  9. 5 out of 5

    The Jewish Book Council

    Review by Wallace Green for the Jewish Book Council. Review by Wallace Green for the Jewish Book Council.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Rachael

  11. 5 out of 5

    Micah

  12. 4 out of 5

    Daniel Schechter

  13. 5 out of 5

    Chaim Miller

  14. 5 out of 5

    Scott A. Steinberg

  15. 5 out of 5

    Erik Herz

  16. 4 out of 5

    Mordy

  17. 4 out of 5

    Menachem Spielman

  18. 5 out of 5

    Adriana

  19. 4 out of 5

    Philip Gross

  20. 4 out of 5

    Ruth Odes

  21. 4 out of 5

    Kevin Wolf

  22. 5 out of 5

    Shelbelle

  23. 4 out of 5

    Nisha R Abkarian

  24. 4 out of 5

    Shaul

  25. 5 out of 5

    Joseph Sueke

  26. 4 out of 5

    Rivkasilver

  27. 4 out of 5

    Heather

  28. 4 out of 5

    Eli K

  29. 4 out of 5

    Vardit

  30. 5 out of 5

    Max Flinker

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