Faith and Passion Intertwined

Book | Fiction | Religion

The Beautiful Possible by Amy Gottlieb is a love story within a love story.

a coin with a Jewish dreidel sitting on a hebrew text
dreidel-4710511_1920 by Ri Butov from Pixabay

“We cross infinity with every step; we meet eternity in every second.” Rabindranath Tagore

Overlaid with the richness and history of the Hebrew language, the Jewish faith, and the author’s depth of study of historical texts, this novel brings the gift of a complex and detailed study of life.

It’s a love story between three people that spans seventy years. A German /Jewish refugee, a rabbinical student who becomes an American Rabbi and an open-minded woman who sustains her love for both of them over her lifetime. They weave a complex pattern of desire and longing over many continents.

The lovers play a game of Question and Answer:

She’elah — a question is asked, a personal question about faith or practice.

Teshuvah — an explanation or ruling is given as the answer.

Often the answer has a hidden meaning that would leave the questioner curious to find out more.

This delicate dance of hidden meanings within the words hints at a relationship full of nuance and depth.

In this way, many things are revealed without being said.

I loved the way the author draws in the wisdom of spiritual traditions and classical poets such as Tagore and Whitman. She invites these works to become part of the conversations in her story.

Deep knowledge of Hasidic and Hindu wisdom, the Song of Songs from the old testament, and a traditional commentary on the Talmud makes this a layered delight to savor as you read it again and again.

Each time I read The Beautiful Possible by Amy Gottlieb, I find another thread of inspiration to ponder.

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