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Schaya





Leo Schaya’s life and work
This site includes Leo Schaya’s biography, photos, online articles, bibliography, and more.
Leo Schaya
Leo  Schaya
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Biography of Leo Schaya

Leo Schaya was born in Switzerland, where he received a traditional Jewish upbringing. From his early youth he devoted himself to the study of the great metaphysical doctrines of East and West, particularly the works of neo-Platonism, Sufism and Advaita Vedanta.

Along with some other writers in the Traditionalist/Perennialist school, Schaya is noted for his grasp of sometimes difficult metaphysical concepts and his ability to summarize and interpret the writings of ancient and medieval sages for current readers.

He published several articles on the metaphysical and esoteric wisdom of the Jewish Kabbalah, as well as a perspicacious book on the subject entitled The Universal Meaning of the Kabbalah (1958), which remains one of the most often quoted books on the subject. He also wrote a book on the Sufi doctrine of unity. In addition, World Wisdom has published a collection of Schaya’s seminal work on his central theme, titled Universal Aspects of the Kabbalah and Judaism (2014), which includes some previously unpublished material.

Leo Schaya's essay "Creation, the Image of God" is one of the articles collected in the anthology Seeing God Everywhere: Essays on Nature and the Sacred . Another essay, "On the Name "Allah" is included in Sufism: Love and Wisdom .

To read Leo Schaya's essay "The Eliatic Function" (about the esoteric function of the prophet Elijah), which appeared in the important traditionalist journal Studies in Comparative Religion, click here.


Books/DVDs containing the work of Leo Schaya

Books written by Leo Schaya

Essays or chapters by Leo Schaya in other books


Leo Schaya’s Writings Online
 TitleSourceAuthor 1Author 2SubjectWW HTMLWW PDFExternal Link
Some Universal Aspects of JudaismUniversal Aspects of the Kabbalah & JudaismSchaya, Leo Comparative Religion, Judaism, Metaphysics
Besides Biblical descriptions, author Leo Schaya turns to some Talmudic and rabbinical writings and oral traditions to give a general, but also a more esoteric, understanding of Jewish doctrines concerning the Temple of Jerusalem. Schaya reviews a number of aspects under which the Presence of God dwells within the physical Temple, but also, by extension and in an immanent sense, within the heart of the Jewish seeker after God. The symbolism of the Temple's features is related, Schaya tells us, to spiritual realities that come to inhabit man's inner reality as well.
The Meaning of the TempleUniversal Aspects of the Kabbalah & JudaismSchaya, Leo Judaism, Metaphysics, Symbolism, Tradition
Creation, the Image of GodSeeing God Everywhere: Essays on Nature and the SacredSchaya, Leo Judaism
The Great Name of GodPray Without Ceasing: The Way of the Invocation in World ReligionSchaya, Leo Judaism
Leo Schaya was perhaps the most masterful interpreter of Jewish esoterism in the light of perennialist wisdom. In this essay, Schaya offers many keys to understanding the function of the prophet Elijah (or Elias) within Jewish mystical tradition, but then Schaya expands this, still using traditional Jewish sources, to encompass a universal function for Elijah. This mysterious prophet seems to have a function that should apply to all traditional peoples, namely reinvigorating the esoteric dimensions within their respective traditions in times of need. These times of need are particularly acute as the world lurches through its modern paroxysms toward the end of this cycle of time.
The Eliatic FunctionStudies in Comparative Religion, Vol. 13, No. 2. ( Spring, 1979)Schaya, Leo Judaism
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Leo Schaya’s Bibliography

Books in English


Universal Aspects of the Kabbalah and Judaism, (World Wisdom, 2014)

Sufism: Love and Wisdom, (contributed essay)(World Wisdom, 2006)

The Universal Meaning of Kabbalah, (Fons Vitae, 2004)

Seeing God Everywhere, (contributed essay) (World Wisdom, 2004)

Books in French


L'Homme et l'Absolu selon la kabbale, (Dervy, 1999)

Naissance a l'esprit (Collection "Mystiques et religions"), (Dervy-Livres, 1987)

La doctrina sufí de la unidad, (José J. de Olañeta, 1985)

La creation en Dieu: A la lumiere du judaisme, du christianisme et de l'islam, (Dervy-Livres, 1983)

La doctrine Soufique de l'unite (Initiation a l'Islam), (A.-Maisonneuve, 1981)



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