Chayey Moharan

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Chayey Moharan
Chayey moharan shaar - hebrewbooks.PNG
1874 first edition title page
Author Nathan of Breslov
Language English
Genre Judaism
Publisher Nathan Goldstein, Rav of Tcherin
Publication date
Media type Book (hardback, paperback, digital image and digital text)
Pages depends on edition

Chayey Moharan Hebrew: חיי מוהר"ן‎‎) is the biography of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov, written by his disciple and scribe Rabbi Nathan of Breslov. As the tzaddik is of central importance in Judaism and especially Breslov, and as the book is about Rabbi Nachman's life and Rabbi Nachman held himself to be the tzaddik hador (tzaddik of the era), Chayey Moharan is an extremely important Jewish book. It became more widely known to Anglophones with the publication of its translation, titled Tzaddik, by Breslov Research Institute, in 1987.

History, editions and omissions[edit]

Rabbi Nathan compiled Rabbi Nachman's biography some time after 1823. Before this, he had been personally engaged in the printing of Rabbi Nachman's works, but then his printing activities became hampered due to opposition and the book was not printed in his lifetime, but remained in the hand of disciples. Rabbi Nathan's follower, Rabbi Nachman of Tcherin (the rabbi of that town who had the same name as Rabbi Nachman), made the first printing in 1874 in Lemberg, both adding and omitting some material and signing himself in the editor's notes as "hama`atik" ("the copier"). The omissions include items that Rabbi Nachman ordered be kept within Breslev circles, as well as statements that would have provoked the opposition exceedingly at the time, such as bold statements of Rabbi Nachman's greatness.

Numerous editions followed, and a few of them add some of the omissions back in. The 1982 edition by Agudat Meshekh HaNachal, Jerusalem, introduced an overall numbering system which labeled all the paragraphs from one to 613, whereas previously each of the approximately 19 sections had their own paragraph numberings starting from one; and this one-to-613 numbering has become prevalent in subsequent editions.[1]:xiii

Breslov Research Institute's Tzaddik has all the omissions added back in except a few;[2] the full manuscripts were made available to the editor and he included them.[1]:xiii

Recently more Hebrew editions have been released which include the omissions, including some that are not included in Tzaddik,[3] for example the one available at (c. 2010?)

Further reading[edit]


  1. ^ a b Tzaddik, Breslov Research Institute, Jerusalem, 1987
  2. ^ In the introduction, R. Moshe Mykoff says he has omitted only two; R. Yaakov Siegel believes there are three omissions.
  3. ^ e.g. see #123