Courtesy of Edis Jurcys
Known as the father of the Jewish Renewal and Spiritual Eldering movements, Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi is an inspirational teacher of Hassidism and Jewish mysticism. Born in Poland and raised in Vienna, Schachter-Shalomi was ordained as an Orthodox rabbi in the Lubavitcher community but later became independent. Known as Reb Zalman, he founded the B'nai Or Religious Fellowship, now ALEPH: Alliance for Jewish Renewal, in Philadelphia in 1969. Schachter-Shalomi was one of eight rabbis who discussed diaspora survival with the Dalai Lama in Dharamsala, India, in 1990 - an encounter later immortalized in Roger Kamenetz's book The Jew in the Lotus (1994).