Essay On Asher Lev

969 Words4 Pages
My name is Asher Lev is a novel by Chaim Potok. The main character, Asher Lev grows up in the Hasidic Jewish community. Asher is an artist living in Brooklyn, whose world is surrounded by the rules of his religion and the Rebbe. Art is not a part of Judais, and is looked down upon more often than not. This problem hinders Asher’s gift of drawing, reputation, and his relationship with his parents. The people in Asher’s life, opinions on art and religion haves contradictions, which only leaves Asher in a battle between the two. Throughout the novel, Asher Lev is continually confused with the meaning of art by his influential community. “Asherel, you have a gift. The gift causes you to think only of yourself and your own feelings. No one would care is these were normal times Asher Lev” (133). These words come from the Rebbe. The Rebbe has the most important influential role in the Jewish community. Jews believe the Rebbe was appointed by God to lead the community. The Rebbe tells Asher that drawing is…show more content…
The teacher, Jacob Khan is a Jew, but does not practice the faith. Surprisingly he was sent from the Rebbe to guide Asher when applying his gift of drawing. “Art is not a toy,” Jacob Khan insisted, “This is not a child scrawling on a wall. This is a tradition. It is a religion, Asher Lev. You are entering a religion called painting” (213). Jacob Khan tells Asher that his gift is a religion of its own. Asher is being spun around by all these different beliefs and ideas of religion and art. Throughout the book, his father expresses his opinion on how art is of the devil, and yet the Rebbe sends Asher to a man who gives Asher the idea that art is a religion. On page 213, Jacob Khan tells Asher: “There has not been a single religious Jew who has been a great painter.” The Rebbe was under the impression that Khan would help Asher, but instead he leads him away from Hasidic
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