Rabbi Dahan Levi was born on December 8, 1920 in Morocco. He was the last of six sons. His education started with the study of the Bible. He was so diligent that at the age of eight, he questioned the views given in various commentaries. He began his studies of the Talmud at the age of eleven and obtained admission to the Yeshiva when he was barely fifteen years old.
At the Talmudic University, Rabbi Levi’s inquisitive mind led him to ask questions of his teachers, which sometimes perplexed them. His teachers believed in traditional methods of teaching and endeavoured to persuade him to follow them in theory and dogma. While the teachers laid stress on commentaries, Dahan Levi wished to go to the essence of the scriptures.
A time came when Dahan Levi’s academic discussions earned for him the dislike of his teachers. Instead of answering his questions, they would simply ask him to leave the classroom. However, he continued his theological studies with critical analysis, with the result that he obtained in 1940 the degree of Talmudic Teacher and Rabbin. After long study, he had come to the conclusion that it was easy to understand the scriptures without the help of controversial commentaries.
Rev. Levi now made plans for further study and research into the myths of the Old Testament world but he was called upon to perform compulsory military service. He joined the army and completed his term in Tunis and Libya as a member of the French Legion. During all these years, his heart longed to visit the Holy Land. He was nominated as “almoner to the battalion” in the British Legion, and so he got an opportunity to proceed to Egypt.
Rev. Levi wandered all over the land of the Pharaohs and then travelled in Palestine, Syria and Iraq for three months. He left army service in 1942 and became a Titular of Talmud and ritual sacrificer in the city of Oran in Algeria.
Rev. Levi married in 1948 when he was twenty-eight years old. Another important event in his life was to move to Parisand his stay there. He took up various jobs and later got an administrative job of the third subdivision in state service. In 1950, he became the Founder President of the “Alliance d’ Abraham,” an organization which aims at the survival of historical links between the three monotheist faiths, Judaism, Buddhism and Islam. It also aims at educating Muslims in the technique of the rite of circumcision..
Rev. Dahan Levi is the Vice-President of the Israeli community from the third administrative subdivision of Paris. In 1972, he was honored with the Decoration of the City of Paris. For his excellent work, he was honored in 1977 with the “Order National du Merite.”
He is a searcher for the truth in history and culture. With the Bible in hand, he visited Occidental Arabia and toured India in 1986. During this period, he visited Delhi, Bombay, Calcutta, Agra, Jaipur and Srinagar in Kashmir. It was destiny that he met Professor Fida Hassnain, and they became good friends.
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