Nahman of Bratslav
Nahman of Bratslav(näkh`mən, brät`släf), 1772–1810, Jewish Hasidic leader, the great-grandson of the Baal-Shem-TovBaal-Shem-Tov
, c.1698–1760, Jewish founder of modern Hasidism, b. Ukraine. His life is the subject of many tales that circulated even before his death. Originally named Israel ben Eliezer, he is said to have been born of elderly, poor parents and to have been orphaned at
..... Click the link for more information. . His messianic pretensions put him in conflict with other Hasidic (see HasidismHasidism
[Heb.,=the pious], Jewish religious movement founded in Poland in the 18th cent. by Baal-Shem-Tov. Its name derives from Hasidim. Hasidism, which stressed the mercy of God and encouraged joyous religious expression through music and dance, spread
..... Click the link for more information. ) leaders. Nahman differed from other Hasidim by his consciousness of God's absence from the world, and his concern about sin. He told stories to convey the struggle against evil and for redemption. After his death, his followers did not choose a new leader, but continue to revere him to this day.
See his tales, tr. and ed. by A. Band (1980); biography by A. Green (1979).