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Encounter on the Narrow Ridge

A Life of Martin Buber

Maurice Friedman

496 pages
Paragon House
Martin Buber's stature as the most significant Jewish religious philosopher of the twentieth century is reinforced by his accomplishments and renown in areas as diverse as Hasidism, psychotherapy, education, folklore, and politics. His classic, I and Thou, is known and studied all over the world. In this complete and masterful biography, Maurice Friedman traces the interweaving of Buber's wholehearted engagement with world events and crises and the evolution of his unique and influential philosophy. We see the impact of World War I on the young thinker; his work in education, community, and politics between the wars; his leadership of the spiritual resistance to the Nazis in Hitler's Germany; and his more than forty years of fighting for Jewish-Arab understanding. In addition, we see Buber interact with Heidegger, Sartre, Jung, Ben Gurion, Hesse, Rosenzweig, and Hammarskjold. Through his close relationship with Buber and recent access to forty-five thousand unpublished letters, Maurice Friedman recreates Buber's vitality, his philosophy of dialogue, and his spirituality based on a personal relationship with God. Encounter on the Narrow Ridge delivers the essential spontaneity of a great man who saw in every encounter a focal point for human growth.
Author Bio
MAURICE FRIEDMAN is professor emeritus of religious studies, philosophy, and comparative literature at San Diego State University. He is the author of Martin Buber: The Life of Dialogue, which Buber himself called "the classic study of my thought," and Martin Buber’s Life and Work, which won the National Jewish Book Award in 1985.