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Jewish Thought Leader David S. Ariel at Kent State, Sept. 27

Posted Sep, 17, 2010

The Jewish Studies Program at Kent State University will present a lecture by David S. Ariel, president of the Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies, on Monday, Sept. 27, at 7:30 p.m. in the Kent Student Center Kiva. The lecture is free and open to the public and will focus on the basic principles of Kabbalah.

David S. Ariel

Ariel said at a time when Hollywood stars have embraced Kabbalah, the Jewish mystical tradition, very few understand it and fewer still can explain it.

He has studied the original sources of the Jewish mystical tradition, the basic principles and teaching of the Kabbalah. Ariel has authored four books, including “Kabbalah,” “Spiritual Judaism,” “What Do Jews Believe?” and “The Mystic Quest.”

“Having someone of Dr. David Ariel’s stature and knowledge come to our campus to kick off this year’s program is tremendously exciting,” said Chaya Kessler, Kent State’s Jewish Studies program director. “I have had the pleasure of hearing Dr. Ariel speak, and he is a dynamic speaker as well as an outstanding scholar. I would encourage everyone to attend his talk.”

As president of the Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish studies, where Hebrew has been taught continuously for six centuries, he has access to its Bodleian Library that holds the world’s leading collection of medieval Hebrew manuscripts.

He served for 25 years as president of Siegal College in Cleveland and built one of the largest graduate programs for Jewish educator development in North America. He also established a broadband videoconferencing network to deliver advanced Jewish studies degrees to students across North America.

Ariel graduated from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and received his master’s and doctorate degrees from Brandeis University in Judaic studies, specializing in Jewish intellectual history.

Ariel has lectured widely on Jewish thought throughout the United States, Israel, the former Soviet Union and Europe. He was the first foreigner in 70 years to teach Jewish studies at the Ukraine Academy of Sciences and Kiev State University. In addition, he has served as a consultant to universities and foundations in North America and in many volunteer capacities, including senior policy advisor to the North American Commission on Jewish Education.

For more information about Kent State’s Jewish Studies Program or the Sept. 27 lecture, call 330-672-8926 or visit

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Media Contacts:
Chaya Kessler,, 330-672-8926
Emily Vincent, 330-672-8595