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Rabbi Dr. Jacob J. Schacter Teaches

MAJESTY AND HUMILITY:
THE LIFE, LEGACY, AND THOUGHT
OF JOSEPH B. SOLOVEITCHIK

  • Videos

    8 Episodes

    Noted Jewish historian Rabbi Dr. Jacob J. Schacter offers an exploration of the subtle philosophy and complex personality of Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik—the 20th century’s most important Orthodox Jewish thinker.

  • Guide

    Study Guide

    Use our in-depth study guide for stimulating discussion questions, key moments in Rabbi Soloveitchik’s life, and recommendations for further study.

  • $40

    Enrollment Cost

Meet Jacob J. Schacter

Meet Jacob J. Schacter

Rabbi Dr. Jacob J. Schacter is University Professor of Jewish History and Jewish Thought and senior scholar at the Center for the Jewish Future at Yeshiva University. From 2000 to 2005, he served as dean of the Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik Institute in Boston, and from 1981 to 2000, he served as rabbi of The Jewish Center in Manhattan.Rabbi Schacter holds a Ph.D. in Near Eastern Languages from Harvard University and received rabbinic ordination from Mesivta Torah Vodaath. He was a teaching fellow at Harvard from 1978-1980, director of Yeshiva University’s Torah u-Madda Project from 1986-1997, and an adjunct assistant professor at the Stern College for Women at Yeshiva University from 1993-1999. He is the co-author of A Modern Heretic and a Traditional Community: Mordecai M. Kaplan, Orthodoxy, and American Judaism (with Jeffrey Gurock, 1996) and the editor of Jewish Tradition and the Nontraditional Jew (1992) and Judaism’s Encounter with other Cultures: Rejection or Integration? (1997). He has published numerous articles and reviews in Hebrew and English and is the founding editor of the Torah u-Madda Journal.

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Episodes

01 Setting the Stage: Life Story

In this opening lecture, Rabbi Schacter outlines the life of Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik, from his birth in the town of Pruzhana, to his time at the University of Berlin, to his long and fruitful career in the United States.

  • Setting the Stage: Life Story | 1:07:12

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02 Centrality of Torah Study and Halakhah: Act and Emotion

For Rabbi Soloveitchik, a life lived in obedience to Jewish law can be transformative, inspiring, and even romantic.

  • Centrality of Torah Study and Halakhah: Act and Emotion | 1:10:54

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03 “Man” Interacts with the World: Education and Action

Rabbi Soloveitchik was a staunch adherent of Jewish law who was also engaged in learning from and contributing to the general culture.

  • “Man” Interacts with the World: Education and Action | 1:08:30

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04 Relating to God: Prayer and Repentance

How is prayer even possible? And what does it have to do with repentance?

  • Relating to God: Prayer and Repentance | 1:09:51

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05 Individual, Family, and Community

Through the lens of Jewish law, Rabbi Soloveitchik’s writings carefully probe the nature of man’s relationship to God as well as man’s relationship to those around him.

  • Individual, Family, and Community | 1:10:49

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06 Zionism and the State of Israel

Though it represented a break with his family tradition, Rabbi Soloveitchik was a passionate religious Zionist.

  • Zionism and the State of Israel | 1:16:38

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07 Jewish-Christian Relations

Rabbi Soloveitchik believed that different faith communities could cooperate in certain non-religious spheres, but had to maintain absolute independence in theological and spiritual matters.

  • Jewish-Christian Relations | 1:16:09

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08 Communal Leader: Taking a Stand

In this last lecture, Rabbi Schacter discusses key moments of decision in Rabbi Soloveitchik’s life as a communal leader as well as the enduring influence of Rabbi Soloveitchik on world Jewry.

  • Communal Leader: Taking a Stand | 53:13

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Explore the life and philosophy of Modern Orthodoxy’s most important thinker, Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik.

Enroll for $40.