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baba-prague  baba-prague is offline
Join Date: 24 Nov 2002
Location: Prague, wonderful Prague, Czech Republic
Posts: 7,626

He may perhaps reflect how I feel myself about this card. I am in some ways quite hostile to certain aspects of organised religion (Bean Feasa will probably particularly understand when I say that being brought up in Belfast can have this result!) and perhaps that's why in the end he is a rather unapproachable figure.
Having said that, we actually made him a little softer than the original sculpture in which it is far more obvious that the woman is naked and pleading. Ironically, I'm sure the sculptor wanted to convey the fact that Loew helped to save his beleagured people. It was a time of terrible persecution - though thanks partly to Loew and to Rudolph II this was far less bad in Prague than in many other parts of Europe - in fact Rudolph was remarkable in openly consulting Loew for advice - at a time when European leaders were mostly far from respectful to their Jewish populations.

By putting him in the Strahov library we wanted to show a vast range of knowledge and learning. The Strahov is also interesting in having a particularly good collection of books on Kabala - and one of the things Loew is famous for is his scholarship and mastery of Kabbalistic theory and practice.

However, with the globe we were also trying to imply that this card is not just about religious knowledge - it's about formalised knowledge and structured instituations of all kinds.

I'll stop there - but do ask if you need to know more about anything I've said. Loew is SUCH a fascinating figure.
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