Rabbi Menahem Mendl was a Hassidic master renowned for his wisdom throughout Europe. The spiritual leader of the Jews in a small stetl called Kotzk in a corner of Poland, he was nevertheless so famous that he was he was referred to far and wide as the Kotzker. His wise sayings—about human nature, how to live, and the world of the spirit—were repeated and passed around, and, though he kept no records, they have been savored and preserved through the years. This beautifully produced collection gathers more than 130 of his sayings and joins them with elegant cut-paper illustrations by the rabbi’s great-great-great-grandson, the illustrator Gabriel Lisowki, who has also provided an introduction about his ancestor.
Jewish Wisdom for Daily Life is a treasure for spiritual seekers or anyone who enjoys life’s lessons distilled into trenchant and memorable aphoristic gems. Here are a few:
Everyone has something to teach, even a thief. If he fails he tries again. If he finds nothing of value, he takes what he finds.
There is nothing more whole than a broken heart.
Angels are God’s favorite creatures. It’s easy to see why. They are not jealous and they like to sing.
Whoever believes in miracles is an imbecile. Whoever does not is an atheist.