BRIEF BIOGRAPHY OF NISSAN MINDEL – (1912-1999)
RABBI DR. NISSAN MINDEL was born in Riga, Latvia in 1912 and was educated in European yeshivos, among them the prestigious Torah V’Derech Eretz - of the Shamshon Rafael Hirsch tradition. He received his rabbinic ordination from noted Rabbonim in Manchester, England and served there as associate Rabbi in the Holy Law Congregation.
He studied law and economics at the University of Manchester in England, which he graduated with B.A. and M.A. and also received a degree in Semitic languages. In 1962 he earned a PHD in philosophy from Columbia University in New York, with his groundbreaking translation of the Tanya to English.
Dr. Mindel was associated with the Chabad Lubavitch movement from 1938-1999. During these very productive six decades he merited to serve the two Rabbeim – Sixth Rebbe, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneerson and his successor and Seventh Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson – as personal secretary responsible for their correspondence in several languages, as their emissary on numerous missions and as prolific writer of Chassidic literature for young and old. He was also a founding member of the three pillers of Chabad - Merkos L'Inyonei Chinuch, Machaneh Yisrael and Agudas Chassidei Chabad.
His writings have spanned the gamut from children’s magazines which he edited for forty seven years to Chabad philosophy for the serious scholar.
Dr. Mindel is perhaps best known for his translation of the Tanya kaddisha to English, an extraordinary achievement which opened the study of chassidus to the world at large. Another translation of his was the Memoirs of the Previous Rebbe, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneerson. Among his many writings are included: monthly children’s magazines - Talks and Tales (English) and Shmuessen Mit Kinder (Yiddish), the Complete Story of Tishrei and the Festival Series, My Prayer, The Storyteller Series, Our People Series (history of the Jewish People), Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi – Biography & Philosophy of Chabad. His works have been translated to many languages and have enjoyed many printings and wide acclaim.
Dr. Mindel’s elegant and lucid writing on many vital topics of Jewish interest has earned him universal appeal and a respected place among the Jewish writers of the twentieth century.
NISSAN MINDEL PUBLICATIONS – NMP
NISSAN MINDEL PUBLICATIONS is devoted exclusively to the preservation, promotion and above all the dissemination of the writings of Rabbi Dr. Nissan Mindel, prolific writer of Chabad literature for young and old for close to six decades, whose lucid and elegant style continues to enjoy universal appeal.
Dr. Nissan Mindel’s extensive archives contain many of his writings not yet published and other untapped treasures for the benefit of the many. He bequeathed these to his daughter and son-in-law with clear instructions that “the message is of the essence and needs to be spread”, thereby the founding of NMP – Nissan Mindel Publications in 1998.
Dr. Mindel’s illustrious career in writing – both of the correspondence written as personal secretary to the Chabad Rabbeim in America, as well as of the countless books and magazines he authored – produced an interesting array of letters and literature, which the Nissan Mindel Publications aims to preserve, promote and publish.
Of special focus during the last years of his life was on the Letter and Spirit Series, a collection of personal letters of the Rebbe, which Dr. Mindel had begun preparing many years earlier for publication and of which volume one was printed in 1998. With the Rebbe’s approval and Blessings, Dr. Mindel worked tirelessly on this project, so dear to his heart. He meticulously collated, categorized and carefully chose those letters which he felt would be of benefit to the general public, letters that would continue to guide, teach and inspire countless others in their daily lives. He had prepared enough letters to fill many volumes and we aim b’ezras Hashem, to continue publishing them. The Letter and Spirit Series will be the mainstay of the Nissan MIndel Publications, among the other works slated for publication.
The focus of NMP is the message – the message of Chabad Chassidus to “perfect the world under the sovereignty of the Almighty “and the spreading of its wellsprings outward". And to ultimately bring Moshiach now.