Monday, June 27, 2005

Torah as Person
I suggested "personal" as a way of describing the relationship to Torah and the Divine - and therefore the unaffectiveness of arguments for the Divinity of Torah or for the Divine; reason (as defined in the language system) and evidentialism are only a few of the many ways of accessing the truth of something such as Torah. Reframing Torah as 'person' reframes the value of evidence and reason. I would imply that on the personal level, belief in the Torah's soul (it has a guf in this world) - the Divinity of Torah, is not susceptable to the kinds of criticism that apply to physical objects of conventional, rational dispute - anymore than the truth claims for the personhood of ones parents, or of the internal aspects of ones friendships are reducible to the mere biology of the organisms in question. There most certainly is physicality - both to ones parents and the Torah (it is not in Heaven) - and that being said - Torah (the text used by those within the geography of Torah Judaism), at it's most 'reduced' phenomenological state (raw, uninterpreted text/letters), is anomalously uniform throughout human history. We have alot to stand on regarding the integrity of our mesorah on the physical existance of [what Jews call] Torah. The arguments for the historical integrity of the text are familiar,(summarized very well in Gil Student's essays, and one of his pamphlets).
I thought this would be a new twist, a "guf-garments/neshamah-body" sort of take, with Zohar in mind (Zohar III:152a). The texts of others, no matter how 'similar' are not Torah. The "old testament", though varying little in current translations (but varying tremendously by exegesis), is a wholey different document -much as the Volgate or the Samaritan texts are distinct texts borne through time by other faith communities. lack of focus, need coffee...


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