The Curious Chasidic Pilgrimage to Lelov, Poland

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Abstract

This paper discusses a Chasidic pilgrimage movement focused on Lelov, which lies south of Cracow. Pilgrimage has always been a major part of Jewish tradition, but for many years during the Cold War it was possible only for a devoted few to return to Poland. With the collapse of Communism, however, pilgrimage sites in Central and Eastern Europe have become much more accessible and consequently ultra-orthodox Jews have created a ‘return movement’.

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Abstract

This paper discusses a Chasidic pilgrimage movement focused on Lelov, which lies south of Cracow. Pilgrimage has always been a major part of Jewish tradition, but for many years during the Cold War it was possible only for a devoted few to return to Poland. With the collapse of Communism, however, pilgrimage sites in Central and Eastern Europe have become much more accessible and consequently ultra-orthodox Jews have created a ‘return movement’.

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