Download Temple Portals: Studies in Aggadah and Midrash in the Zohar by Oded Yisraeli, Liat Keren PDF

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By Oded Yisraeli, Liat Keren

This monograph discusses the Zohar, an important e-book of the Kabbalah, as a past due strata of the Midrashic literature. the writer concentrates at the 'expanded' biblical tales within the Zohar and on its dating to the traditional Talmudic Aggadah. The analytical and important exam of those biblical topics unearths points of continuity and alter within the background of the outdated Aggadic tale and its method into the Zoharic corpus.

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Additional info for Temple Portals: Studies in Aggadah and Midrash in the Zohar

Example text

This leads the homilist to conclude that the light created on the first day was not that belonging to the luminaries, which were only created on the fourth day, but another, mystical light. This exegetical crux—echoed in the tannaitic dispute in the baraita—is adduced and elucidated by the amoraim. ” According to a literal understanding, its uniqueness lies in its power—and possibly also its physical quality, which grants human beings the ability to see (“one could see and look thereby”) great distances (“from one end of the world to the other”).

Ezra b. Solomon, R. Azriel, and R. Jacob bar Sheshet— and the Castilian mystics, particularly R. Isaac Hacohen and R. Jacob Hacohen, R. Moses of Burgos, and R. Todros Abulafia. While not clearly belonging to any of these corpora or bearing any striking affinity to them, many additional works also contain important and valuable interpretive traditions for understanding the origins of the Kabbalah in general and the Zohar in particular. The majority of this material falls into three distinct “canonical” bodies of work that constitute the beginnings of the Kabbala—Sefer Habahir, the traditions ascribed to R.

A case in point is the question of Adam’s sin. As we shall see below, the Zohar cites the classical kabbalistic view that this consisted of “cutting down the shoots”—i. , the sundering of the upper coupling between the tree of knowledge and the tree of life, the sefirot of Malkut and Tiferet (see Chapter 5). This tradition also occurs in another version, however, according to which Adam preferred the free-standing tree of knowledge over the upper tree of life, his sin thus being that of choosing to spend his time under the shade of the tree of the Chapter 3: From the Rabbinic to Zoharic Aggada 25 knowledge of good and evil—to which death was attached—rather than the eternal life (physical and spiritual) hidden under the branches of the tree of life.

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