Dr. Daniel C. Matt is considered one of today's pioneering interpreters of Jewish mysticism, especially in applying it to modern life. He is a professor of Jewish spirituality at the Center for Jewish Studies, Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California. He is the author of The Essential Kabbalah (HarperSanFrancisco), Zohar: The Book of Enlightenment (Paulist Press) and many articles on Jewish mysticism.
I took Danny Matt's class in "God and the Big Bang" in Berkeley. Matt in person is witty, intelligent and educated. In print, he is even more so. His science is strong, his kabbalah is flawless. There are parallels between this book and Capra's Buddist/science books, but where Capra is trying to prove something, Matt is just pointing out interesting facts. Anyone interested in science or theology would enjoy this book.
Pantheism Peeping 'Round the Corner2003/3/25
I intended to buy this book from the Jewish perspective, so I wasn't dissapointed. As a naturalistic Pantheist, a progressive Jew and an avid fan of Carl Sagan, this book is a pretty great mix. It is humanely written, describing the natural beauty surrounding us and using mundane analogies that 'click' with all of us. The only problem with this book is a theological one: the author tries to reconcile a scientific pantheistic outlook (Spinoza's 'God' as another reviewer noted correctly) based on empiricism, with a (panen)theistic outlook of Kabbalah and the traditional theistic outlook of Torah. This is hard to swallow for those not interested in Jewish tradition, but can be considered a noble - albeit not perfect attempt - for those Jews (like me) who seek to reconcile a rational worldview with a spiritual approach. Getting down the the Nitty Gritty of Pantheism and the history thereof, I recommend Paul Harrison's 'Elements of Pantheism'. Start there and if you're into Judaism, this book makes a good sequel.
Great book for God Seekers2013/12/3
Fascinating book at Creation from a Jewish believer's point of view. Also an introduction to the Mystical aspect of the Jewish faith, Kaballah. As a Christian, I found this book to be a fascinating look at the very roots of my faith. Matt writes of all the names of GOD, many of which I did not know, that deepened my understanding of GOD's vastness. I read this book with a marker and a pen. This book made me think, and I spent many hours on the internet searching out Matt's ideas. It is not too often that I've encountered a book that has involved me on such a deep level.
!An apassionate book!1997/12/30
In our times, it's important to enjoy ourselves, and feel that we are in a beautiful and neverending world. You can feel it, when you raise the point between science and God, and you can see that, day by day, we are integrate our technology and our souls in one, and now we can realize this, seeing that with science, we can find our mind, body and universe toghether. With this book, you will feel more unit with the Divine and with the whole universe. !Don't miss it!
Not much science, a lot of Kabbalah2014/12/9
The title to this book is a bit misleading. There is very little science in this book. Mostly, its an exposition of some basic concepts of the Kabbalah, as seen against the backdrop of modern cosmological theory. I would have liked it better if Dr. Matt went a little deeper into the science. That said, the book presented an easy read, with some fairly basic ideas presented in an interesting way; so it gets a mild recommendation.