The Sabbatean Movement

and the Judaism of Universal Tikkun

The Influence of the Sabbateanism
The New Donmeh
Donmeh FAQs

Sabbatai Zevi
Nathan of Gaza
Yakov Leib Frank
Yakov Leib haKohain
Jewish Renewal, Hermetic Cabala, and Sabbatai Zevi

The Influence of Sabbateanism

The Sabbatian events of 1665-1666 -- which the New York Review of Books has called "a moving tragedy of vast dimensions" -- including his act of "Holy Apostasy to Islam" were perhaps the most significant in Jewish history, and certainly in the development of Jewish Kabbalah. They are thoroughly documented in Gershom Scholem's monumental (1000-page) study, Sabbatai Sevi: The Mystical Messiah (Princeton University Press) which one can read along with his two other books, The Messianic Idea in Judaism and Major Trends in Jewish Mysticism. If one has any interest in Jewish mysticism, they would be well worth the trouble.

Sabbatai, through Frank, is credited by some serious scholars with not only setting in motion the events leading to the emergence of the Conservative and Reform branches of Judaism, but also with fomenting the Turkish, French and even American revolutions. (See, for example, Prof. Harris Lenowitz's introduction to The Sayings of Yakov Frank, Tree/Tzaddikim, 1978; also my own publications on the subject in The Critic; A Journal Of Contemporary Catholic Culture; The Priest, a journal of Catholic theology; The Library Journal Of The C.G. Jung Institute Of San Francisco; and, to some extent, Dor L'dor: Journal of  the World Jewish Bible Society of Jerusalem.)

To this day, pockets of radical Kabbalists throughout the world, but particularly in Asia Minor, covertly worship Sabbatai as the Promised Messiah and an incarnation of the Godhead. However, to my knowledge, and in my experience of Sabbatianism (which spans over 40 years), DONMEH-L is the only collective of Sabbatian/Frankist "fellow travellers" West of Turkey, and certainly the only one on the Internet.

I realize that this is a vast and complex subject, but I also believe that the legacies of Sabbatai Zevi and my namesake, Yakov Leib Frank, have too much to contribute to the modern world to remained shrouded in scholarly captivity.

by Yakov Leib HaKohain

World Wide Web - Donmeh Links - World Wide Web

web site Donmeh West - The Neo-Sabbatean Collectiove of the Internet - Yakov Leib haKohain's Donmeh Home Page

web pageDonmeh - a short page at Jerry Katz's external linkNonduality Salon

The problem of the Exoteric and Esoteric in Judaism

Lurianic Kabbalah
Meditations of the Baal Shem Tov
The Place of Jesus in Sabbatean Theology
Merkabah Mysticism and Neo-Sabbatian Kabbalah

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page uploaded 17 October 1998, last modified 31 December 2004