Tag Archives: Jews

Star In the Sky

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The Wedding of Astrology and Kabbalah: Stars and Spheres

The following is an excerpt from Cosmic Navigator by Gahl Sasson:

The author of Sefer Yetzirah —tradition suggests it was Abraham, the first mono- theist of the Old Testament—provides precise associations between the zodiac signs and the Hebrew letters, yoking astrology to the sacred letters of the Torah. This manuscript details how God deployed the archetypal energies of the ten-sphered Kabbalistic Tree of Life and the twenty-two Hebrew letters to create the universe (see chapter 5).

The Midrash, a collection of Jewish myths and legends, tells us that King Solomon wore a magical ring engraved with Hebrew letters that afforded him the power to speak with animals. Since the word zodiac in Greek means “the wheel of animals,” one can say that King Solomon’s capacity to converse with animals referred to his ability to speak the language of the Continue reading

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Book of Silence

Walking on Water (WoW!): Considering the Subject of SilenceFrom Book of Silence – Sepher Hash’tikah
by Reb Yakov Leib HaKohain, DONMEH WEST

 

“In seeking Wisdom, the first stage is silence.” — Rabbi Solomon ibn Gabriol (11th Century)

To begin with, there are two Silences and not one: There is the Silence of the Mouth and, in addition, the Silence of the Mind. The former does not necessarily accompany the latter, but the latter always accompanies the former. That is, one can be silent “in-the-mouth” while not, at the same time, also being silent “in-the-mind.” On the other hand, one who is silent “in-the-mind” is, at the same time, always silent in-the-mouth. Thus, there are three types of Lomaidim (Hebrew = “Learners”):

  • THE FOOL: Silent neither in the Mouth nor Mind
  • THE HEARING IMPAIRED: Silent in the Mouth but not the Mind
  • THE LISTENER: Silent in the Mouth and the Mind

Of the “fool,” Buddhism says, “A fool is like a spoon: it can sit in a bowl of soup forever and never taste it.” And in much the same way, the Talmud teaches: Continue reading

Sad Mor’ Sedeq

Who Was the Teacher of Righteousness in the Dead Sea Scrolls?
By Kerry A. Shirts, 1992 [Excerpted]

Introduction

The Dead Sea Scrolls are documents (thousands of fragments) found in caves in the deserts of Palestine around Jerusalem, during the 1940’s-50’s, written by Jewish sectaries who fled to the wilderness in opposition to the prevailing powers at Jerusalem, and specifically the Temple, approximately 200 B.C. Samuel Sandmal, notes that it is clear the community of Qumran arose because of the dissatisfaction of how the priests were running the Temple. It had divine sanction, they did not.1

The scrolls contain instructions on how to live in order to be the receivers of a new covenant the sect felt was coming. In other words the documents seem to have an apocalyptic orientation. Every book of the Bible is represented except the Book of Esther, as well as many apocryphal books, commentaries on these books with their particular application to the sect (arguably the Essenes), sectarian materials on how to join the sect, etc. Continue reading

Qumran Sedeq

The Teacher of Righteousness
in the Qumran Texts
By F. F. BRUCE, 1957

I. THE TEACHER AND THE TEXTS
‘The Teacher of Righteousness’ is the name given in a number of the lately discovered Qumran documents to a man who was held in high veneration by the religious community on whose beliefs and practices these documents have thrown so much light. If he was not actually the founder of the community, it was certainly he who impressed upon it those features which distinguished it from other pious groups which flourished among the Jews during the last two or three centuries of the Second Commonwealth. So far as we can gather from our present sources of information, he is never referred to by his personal name in the Qumran texts.1

The title bestowed on him by his followers, ‘The Teacher of Righteousness’ (Heb. moreh sedeq or moreh hassedeq), may echo Hosea x. 12, where the prophet calls to his people: ‘break up your fallow ground: for it is time to seek the LORD, till he come and rain righteousness (Heb. yoreh sedeq) upon you.’ The RV margin gives ‘teach you righteousness’ as an alternative translation to ‘rain righteousness Continue reading

Habakkuk

Habakkuk ►
King James Bible

1. Habakkuk’s Complaint
(Psalm 13:1-6)

1 The burden which Habakkuk the prophet did see. 2 O LORD, how long shall I cry, and thou wilt not hear! even cry out unto thee of violence, and thou wilt not save! 3 Why dost thou shew me iniquity, and cause me to behold grievance? for spoiling and violence are before me: and there are that raise up strife and contention. 4 Therefore the law is slacked, and judgment doth never go forth: for the wicked doth compass about the righteous; therefore wrong judgment proceedeth.

The Lord’s Answer

5 Behold ye among the heathen, and regard, and wonder marvellously: for I will work a work in your days, which ye will not believe, though it be told you. 6 For, lo, I raise up the Chaldeans, that bitter and hasty nation, which shall march through the breadth of the land, to possess the dwellingplaces that are not theirs. 7 They are terrible and dreadful: their judgment and their dignity shall proceed of themselves. 8 Their horses also are swifter than the leopards, and are more fierce than the evening wolves: and their horsemen shall spread themselves, and their horsemen shall come from far; they shall fly as the eagle that hasteth to eat. 9 They shall come all for violence: Continue reading

Human Nahum

Nahum (KJV)

1:1 The burden of Nineveh. The book of the vision of Nahum the Elkoshite. God is jealous, and the Lord revengeth; the Lord revengeth, and is furious; the Lord will take vengeance on his adversaries, and he reserveth wrath for his enemies. The Lord is slow to anger, and great in power, and will not at all acquit the wicked: the Lord hath his way in the whirlwind and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet. He rebuketh the sea, and maketh it dry, and drieth up all the rivers: Bashan languisheth, and Carmel, and the flower of Lebanon languisheth. The mountains quake at him, and the hills melt, and the earth is burned at his presence, yea, the world, and all that dwell therein. Who can stand before his indignation? and who can abide in the fierceness of his anger? his fury is poured out like fire, and the rocks are thrown down by him. The Lord is good, a strong hold in the day of trouble; and he knoweth them that trust in him. But with an Continue reading

Jonah’s Gourd Habit

JONAH AND THE “GOURD” AT NINEVEH: CONSEQUENCES OF A CLASSIC MISTRANSLATION
By Jules Janick and Harry S. Paris, CUCURBITACEAE, 2006, pp. 349-357.

ABSTRACT. The fast-growing plant referred to in the biblical Book of Jonah is most often translated into English as “gourd.” However, this is a mistranslation that dates to the appended Septuagint, the Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible, in which the Hebrew word qiqayon (castor, Ricinus communis, Euphorbiaceae) was transformed into the somewhat similar-sounding Greek word kolokynthi (colocynth, Citrullus colocynthis). In translation of the Greek into Latin, kolokynthi became the similar-sounding cucurbita (gourd). This is reflected in early iconography, the plant most often depicted being a long-fruited Lagenaria siceraria (bottle or calabash gourd), a fast-growing climber.

Cucurbits are frequent subjects of art, literature, and myth. Since ancient times, people the world over have been fascinated by the fast growth of cucurbits, from seed to a rampant vine bearing prominent, attractive fruits within two or three months. Metaphorically, the cucurbits are associated with warmth, Continue reading