I think Safed as deeply religious is related to Safed as a center for the arts. Intense religious practice, especially mysticism, is often impatient with religious orthodoxy in somewhat the same way as the arts are inclined to run counter to the status quo. Safed is a haven from the conventional for both Judaism and the arts.
Published by ronwendlingoutlookcom
My life has had three phases: one as a Jesuit seminarian, recorded in my 2015 memoir (Unsuitable Treasure: An Ex-Jesuit Makes Peace with the Past, Oak Tree Press); another as a college teacher and scholar of 19th century British Literature, best recorded in Coleridge's Progress to Christianity: Experience and Authority in Religious Faith (Associated University Presses, 1995); and finally my current phase as a retiree given to social media posts and photo commentary on my travels with my wife, Mary. View all posts by ronwendlingoutlookcom