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Aryeh Kaplan

Biographical Information: – Aryeh Kaplan was born in 1934 in the Bronx, New York City. – His mother passed away when he was 13, leading […]

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Biographical Information:
– Aryeh Kaplan was born in 1934 in the Bronx, New York City.
– His mother passed away when he was 13, leading to a challenging upbringing.
– Kaplan was expelled from public school and grew up as a street kid in the Bronx.
– He enrolled at Yeshiva Torah Vodaas at age 15 and later helped open Yeshiva Ohr Elchonon in Los Angeles.
– Kaplan transitioned to a rabbinic career in 1965 after a secular career in physics.
– He married Tobie Goldstein in 1961 and had nine children.
– Aryeh Kaplan died at home of a heart attack on January 28, 1983, at age 48 and was buried in Jerusalems Mount of Olives Jewish Cemetery.

Career and Literary Output:
– Kaplan became a Hebrew teacher at Eliahu Academy in Louisville, Kentucky in 1956.
– He studied physics at the University of Louisville and earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees.
– Kaplan worked as a research scientist at the National Bureau of Standards.
– Transitioning to a rabbinic career in 1965, he held pulpit roles at various Conservative synagogues before focusing on writing and editing religious publications in Brooklyn.
– His literary output includes works on prayer, Jewish marriage, and meditation, integrating ideas from Rabbinic literature, Kabbalah, and Hasidut.

NCSY Involvement and Legacy:
– Kaplan engaged with NCSY as an author, speaker, and spiritual mentor, known for his ability to explain complex topics in a simple manner.
– He developed a close friendship with Pinchas Stolpers, expanding his audience and legacy.
– His works, such as ‘The Living Torah’ and ‘The Living Nach,’ continue to be read and referenced globally.
– NCSY republished Kaplan’s works in 2021, and the Aryeh Kaplan Academy in Kentucky is named in his honor.

Published Works and Influence:
– Kaplan’s writings cover a wide range of subjects, including Jewish philosophy, evolution, and creation.
– He emphasized grounding beliefs in sacred texts and promoted traditional Jewish teachings.
– His teachings continue to impact individuals through his writings, providing valuable guidance for daily living.
– Kaplan’s legacy is celebrated by various Jewish organizations and publications, highlighting his profound insights into Jewish values.

Recognition and Commemoration:
– Kaplan’s impact on Jewish thought and philosophy is widely acknowledged through various articles and publications.
– His work remains relevant and influential in contemporary Jewish studies, inspiring individuals globally.
– Commemorative events and discussions are held to honor his legacy, ensuring his teachings are remembered and studied for generations.
– Kaplan’s works are available online on platforms like,, and, ensuring continued access and study of his profound insights.

Aryeh Kaplan (Wikipedia)

Aryeh Moshe Eliyahu Kaplan (Hebrew: אריה משה אליהו קפלן; October 23, 1934 – January 28, 1983) was an American Orthodox rabbi, author, and translator best known for his Living Torah edition of the Torah and extensive Kabbalistic commentaries. He became well-known as a prolific writer and was lauded as an original thinker. His wide-ranging literary output, inclusive of introductory pamphlets on Jewish beliefs, and philosophy written at the request of NCSY are often regarded as significant factors in the growth of the baal teshuva movement.

Aryeh Kaplan
Pinchas Stolper, “Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan z”l: An Appreciation,” Ten Da’at, vol. 1, no. 2 (Spring 1987): 8-9
Leonard Martin Kaplan

October 23, 1934
Bronx, NY
DiedJanuary 28, 1983(1983-01-28) (aged 48)
Brooklyn, NY
Alma materUniversity of Louisville, University of Maryland, Yeshiva Torah Vodaas, Yeshiva Ohr Elchonon, Mir Yeshiva (Jerusalem)
ProfessionRabbi, Writer, Physicist
Jewish leader
ProfessionRabbi, Writer, Physicist
SynagogueAdas Israel, B'nai Sholom, Adath Israel, Ohav Shalom
Yahrtzeit14 Shevat (next occurs on February 12, 2025)
BuriedMount of Olives, Israel
ResidenceBrooklyn, NY
SemikhahRabbi Eliezer Yehuda Finkel, at the Mir Yeshiva in Jerusalem
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