Chabad at Stanford
Wisdom Center
Jewish History
  • Women Who Inspire: The Biblical Heroines as Role Models for the 21st Century!
  • The Secret of Jewish Continuity
  • The Incredible 1st century: The Rise of Christianity, Massada and Yavneh
  • The People, Events and Ideas Shaped Jewish History in the last 100 years

Sages through the Ages
This series of talks looks at the some of the monumental personalities and seminal thinkers that have uplifted and guided the Jewish People. It offers an up-close biographical study of the accomplishments and teachings of some of the greatest scholars in Jewish history. A textual study of their teachings will be included.

  • Abraham - 19th BCE
  • Moses -13th-14th centuries BCE
  • King David - 9th century BCE
  • Hillel the Elder - 1st century CE
  • Rebbe Akiva - 2nd century CE
  • Rebbe Yehuda HaNasi 2nd century CE
  • Rbnu.Saadya Gaon (882-942)
  • Rashi (Rabbi Shlomo Yitzchaki). (1040-1105)
  • Rabbi Moshe ben Maimon (Maimonides) (1135-1204)
  • Rabbi Moshe ben Nachman (Ramban) - (1194-1270)
  • • Rabbi Isaac Luria (Arizal) - (1534-1572)
  • Rabbi Judah Loew, the Maharal of Prague (1525-1609).
  • Rabbi Isaiah HaLevi Horowitz -The Shaloh (1565-1630)
  • Rabbi Israel Baal Shem Tov (Besht) - (1698-1760)
  • Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi (Alter Rebbe) - (1745-1812)
  • The Rebbe Menachem Mendel Schneerson (1902-1994)

The Most Influential Books in Jewish History
This lecture series looks at the great books that have shaped and inspired the Jewish People. These are the works of sacred literature, history, philosophy and law that continue to be studied in times, places, and cultures far removed from those in which they were written.

Book: The Torah
1313 BCE
Author: G-d
The Torah is the constitution and cornerstone of Judaism.

Book: The Psalms
Compiled 9th century BCE
Author: King David wrote the book along with the contributions of other great figures including Adam and Moses.

Psalms are the 150 poems which praise, beseech, thank, or express majestic love and marvel for G-d.

Book: The Mishnah
Codified in the 2nd century CE.
Author: Rabbi Judah the Prince
The first written summary of the Oral Law

Book: The Talmud
Compiled in the 5th century CE
Author: Compiled by Rav Ashi and Ravina in the 5th century CE

The Talmud is a 2,711-page summary of oral law organized in 37 Tractates and it is the repository of thousands of years of Jewish wisdom. It is an amalgam of law, legend, and philosophy, a blend of unique logic and shrewd pragmatism of history and science, anecdotes and humor.

Book: The Zohar
2nd Century Author: Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochi
The source of Jewish mysticism.

Book: Emunot VeDyot
10th century
Author: R. Saadya Gaon

Emunot Vedyot, the Book of Beliefs and Opinions, was the first systematic exposition and defense of the tenets of Judaism and contains a detailed account of his views.

Book: Mishnah Torah
12th century
Author: Maimonidies

An encyclopedia compilation of all Talmudic law in a brilliant and systematic arrangement.

Book: The Kuzari
12th century
Author: Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi One of the greatest philosophical works of Judaism.

Book: The Shulchan Aruch
Published 16th century
Author: Rabbi Yosef Karo
The most influential code of Jewish Law

Book: The Tanya
18th century
Author: Rabbi Schneur Zalman

The Tanya is one of the most extraordinary books of moral teachings ever written. A seminal document in the study of Kabbalah, the Tanya explores and solves the dilemmas of the human soul by arriving at the root causes of its struggles.