How have the scholars of Jewish mysticism responded to your book? And how does their response compare to scholars of Islamic Sufi mysticism?
By and large, the response and reviews to the book have been very positive. However, some academics have viewed the book with a bit of skepticism due to the fact that I am not a lettered academic myself, yet have had the “audacity” to write an academic book which breaks new ground in the research of the history of Jewish-Muslim relations, as well as Judaism itself.
In a world where so many writers of nonfiction illustrate facts and figures in black and white, Thomas Block illuminates the history of Jewish and Muslim mysticism in a vividly hued portrait. Shalom/Salaam: A Story of Mystical Fraternity is a well-researched and carefully drawn masterpiece. In this culmination of more than ten years of sustained interest and thorough resear
If you believe the narratives of modern Zionists and Islamophobes, Jews and Muslims exist in a natural state of animosity. The relationship between the people of the two faiths is, according to this story, typified by massacres, oppression and antagonism, and the current situation in Palestine is just one episode in a long history of conflicts.
Want something truly provocative to discuss at Passover next week? Or, if you’re among the 2 billion Christians approaching Holy Week and thinking about the history of Jerusalem: Want to revolutionize your understanding of what has unfolded across the Holy Land between Jews and Muslims?
What an interesting choice of subject. Although Thomas Block is not the first to claim that Sufism, a mystical tradition within Islam, has been a formative influence on the development of Jewish mysticism from the
Block, a Jew, independent scholar, and “citizen-diplomat,” spent more than 10 years researching and uncovering the hidden links between the mystical systems within Islam and Judaism, expressed in Sufism and Kabbalah, respectively.
The citizens of Iraq are no strangers to atrocity. Crimes against humanity have been perpetrated there and around the world for years, yet many Americans are largely unaware anything is wrong. This week, a group of artists and legal activists will do its best to change that.
Community activist Nadine Bloch insists that "all good political work is good theater." And to that end, artist and political activist Tom Block is producing the mother of all endeavors, the Amnesty International Human Rights Art Festival. Some 400 artists will participate in 200 free events taking place Friday through Sunday throughout downtown Silver Spring.