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Hasidim or Chassidim (both: häsēˈdĭm, khä–) [Heb.,=the pious], term used by the rabbis to describe those Jews who maintained the highest standard of religious observance and moral action. The term has been applied to movements at three distinct times. The first Hasidim, also called the Assideans or Hasideans, were an ancient Jewish sect that developed between 300 B.C. and 175 B.C. They were the most rigid adherents of Judaism in contradistinction to those Jews who were beginning to be affected by Hellenistic influences. The Hasidim led the resistance to the hellenizing campaign of Antiochus IV of Syria, and they figured largely in the early phases of the revolt of the Maccabees. Their ritual strictness has caused some to see them as forerunners of the Pharisees. Throughout the Talmudic period numerous figures were referred to as Hasidim. During the 12th and 13th cent., however, there arose in Germany a specific group known as the Hasidei Ashkenaz. Influenced by Saadia ben Joseph and with messianic and mystical elements, it held as its central ideology the unity of God, the application of justice in all situations, social and economic equality, and martyrdom at the hands of the crusaders rather than compromise of any kind. The chief ethical work that derived from the group was the Sefer Hasidim (tr. Book of the Pious, 1973). The third movement to which the term Hasidim is applied is that founded in the 18th cent. by Baal-Shem-Tov and known as Hasidism.


See S. Lieberman, Hellenism in Jewish Palestine (1962); S. G. Kramer, God and Man in the Sefer Hasidim (1966); A. L. Lowenkopf, The Hasidim (1973). See also bibliography under Hasidism.

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References in periodicals archive ?
With the bitter conflict between Mitnagdim and Chasidim long behind us, there is no good reason to perpetuate the Gra's polemical interpretation of the Haggadah and no justification to spread the erroneous belief that the Haggadah makes not a single mention of Moses.
[3.] For example, Sefer Chasidim (at 234) rules accordingly that a father who asked his son to provide him with food or drink against medical instructions need not be obeyed.
In this way, the other voices on the album reveal how Carlebach marshaled the institutional infrastructure of the Folk Revival to carve out a new space for American Jewish cultural production that both reached back to familiar religious refrains and forward to what would later come to be known as "participatory worship." At The Village Gate, Carlebach occupied one of the central stages of the Folk Revival, but his audience remained largely Jewish, non-chasidic chasidim of a sort, who found in his songs a new voice of traditional Judaism that could transgress without transgression.
In contrast to most Satmar chasidim, he had a finely trimmed goatee, and with his silver handled cane and black homburg, cut a stylish figure.
Both, for example, explain Chasidim (Haxidepai in Chinese) as "a sect which is against Talmud and promotes pantheism," among other things.
Chasidim dance in the heavens, no talking there, the words are silent there, there are no overcrowded quarters.
Her publications include many essays and articles on the subject of Yiddish language use by contemporary Chasidim. Creative writing includes "Shards" in Second Generation Voices ed.
He called Israelis "worse than Nazis," and lectured Pope John Paul II on the tarmac of the Damascus airport that "the Jews killed Christ." A few years ago, Syrian Defense Minister Field Marshal Mustafa Tlass signed a contract with Egyptian producer, Munir Radhi, to make a film based on Tlass's 1983 book, The Matzah of Zion, whose full-color cover is adorned with hook-nosed Chasidim draining the blood of a child.
His training as a young boy in the traditions of the Gerer Chasidim imprinted upon him a respect for Judaism and its texts, and there are numerous pages in his chronicle where he enriches the narrative with eminently suitable quotations from the Torah, the Talmud, and the writings of major Jewish thinkers.
Still, when they fought about Jews and Stalin, they hollered and shouted at each other with all the holy passion of the misnagdim against the Chasidim.
Dik's in-laws were staunch Chasidim, while Dik himself despised Chasidism, regarding it as a gross superstition, almost akin to idolatry.
Reb Yankele was a Chasid, one of the Chasidim of Reb Nachman of Bratslav.