My Jewish Learning

Kabbalah & Mysticism Quiz

Jewish mystical teachings about the nature of God and reality have had a profound impact on the development of Judaism. How much do you know about this area of Jewish contemplation and spirituality?

Question 1. According to Rabbi Yehuda Ashlag, the study of Kabbalah is:
 An otherwordly tradition
 A logical system intended for the ethical and political redemption of human society
 The only way to guarantee one will have a place in the World to Come
 A good way to rub elbows with celebrities


Question 2. Merkavah mystics chose the first chapter of one prophetic book as their textual starting point. Which book was it?
 The Book of Isaiah
 The Book of Jeremiah
 The Book of Samuel
 The Book of Ezekiel


Question 3. Which rabbi is responsible for challenging the convention that the study of Kabbalah is only for a few elite scholars and thinkers?
 Joseph Caro
 Yehuda Ashlag
 Moshe Soleveichik
 The Vilna Gaon


Question 4. Which of the following people are associated with the authorhsip of the Zohar
 Moses de Leon
 Moses Maimonides
 Baruch Spinoza


Question 5. Which of the following kabbalistic thinkers attempted to attain prophecy?
 Isaac Luria
 Abraham Joshua Heschel
 Abraham Abulafia
 All of these
 None of these


Question 6. True or false: Hasidism spread mystical thinking and living to the masses of European Jewry by teaching that all people could have an experiential connection with God.


Question 7. The poem Yedid Nefesh was written by
 The Arizal
 Eleazar Azikri
 Isaac Luria


Question 8. Which of these is a characteristic of the kabbalistic conception of the Ein Sof?
 It is the creator of all life
 It is limitless
 No human can gaze directly at it
 Only learned rabbis can come in contact with it


Question 9. The key concepts of Lurianic kabbalah include
 tzimtzum (contraction)
 the “shattering of the vessels”
 Both of the above
 Neither of the above


Question 10. Which of these is a characteristic of what the contemporary scholar Moshe Idel calls "intensive mysticism"?
 It is purely intellectual in nature
 It is similar to studying chumash with Rashi
 It is experiential, including chanting and meditation
 All of these
 None of these