The Chosen

The Chosen by: Chaim Potok

what does reuven believe Reb saunders means when, in a dream, he accuses Rueven of poinsioning danny's mind?

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Danny's suggestion that he might not become a tzaddik is a significant step, for it indicates that he will make a final break from his father's ideas. This chapter shows that Danny is becoming progressively secular in his beliefs, accepting Freudianism without comment even to the surprise of the seemingly more progressive Reuven. However, Danny's idea of ceding the position of tzaddik depends on his brother; as the previous chapter indicates, his brother's health is not necessarily stable and this may become an important factor.

Reuven reacts to this news with a sense of guilt, showing that he is more ambivalent about his role in 'corrupting' Danny than previously suggested. His dream that Reb Saunders screams at him is evidence of this ambivalence, but also contrasts with Reb's actual behavior. Although Reb is fearsome and dictatorial, his only outburst against Reuven comes when he mentions Palestine; Reuven perceives Reb Saunders to be far more threatening than his actual behavior suggests.