Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Labyrinths and Mazes in Jewish Tradition: The Summary

[A labyrinth composed of the first letters of each of the ten sefirot. Based on a published edition of Pardes Rimmonim by Moses Cordovero]

Well, as of this week, I think I can fairly claim to be the world's leading expert on labyrinths in Jewish tradition. My article, "Finding the Center, Entering the Land: The Labyrinths of Jewish Imagination" was published in the Spring 2009 issue of Parabola: Tradition, Myth, and the Search for Meaning.

This 3000 word article summarizes the ways Jews have used the labyrinth as a literary, graphic and symbolic (sorry, no known Jewish labyrinth structures before the 20th Century) motif.

The Parabola article comes with one addendum from me. The graphic layout staff and editorial staff did not coordinate as well as they could and the two illustrations of labyrinths in the article's layout are reversed from their order of citation in the article. The sefirotic labyrinth (above) that appears at the start of the article is meant to be illustration 2, while the Jericho labyinth that appears in the middle of the article is cited in the article text as illustration 1. So is the way of the earth.

You can also learn more about this and all aspects of Jewish esoteric, folkloric, and mystical traditions by reading the Encyclopedia of Jewish Myth, Magic, and Mysticism: http://www.amazon.com/Encyclopedia-Jewish-Myth-Magic-Mysticism/dp/0738709050


Blogger Mitko said...

I just love your blog. So much valuable information. Thanks a lot!

2:42 PM  
Blogger Suecae Sounds said...

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11:31 PM  
Blogger Geoffrey Dennis said...

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7:18 AM  
Anonymous VIcki said...

I'm glad I found you--I read your article in Parabola, and found it fascinating, especially the part about the Song of Songs as a key to a labyrinth. Thank you!

4:27 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

How can I get a copy of the Parabola Labyrinth article? Thanks! elisebarber@yahoo.com

9:14 AM  
Blogger Geoffrey Dennis said...

Dear Elise,

Parabola Magazine sells its back issues through its website. Just search "parabola" and "magazine" and you will come right to it. Shouldn't cost more than $5-6.

11:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The triumph of the imaginative faculty, in the Jewish labyrinth

VOL. 34:1


10:32 PM  

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