100.02 The Primordial Divine (pps.65-67)
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100.02 The Primordial Divine
The infinite potentials/Potentials of the Divine, including the potentials to create the universe, within which God would create man to strive for his own munificent potentialities,214 are inherent in the eternal Divine215
Who calls the generations from the beginning, I, the Lord, First. And the Last, I am He.
-Isaiah 41:4 (cf.44:6, 45:11)
the Holy seed shall be the stock thereof.
. . . who shut up the sea with doors,
When it broke forth,
and issued out of the womb?
â€”â€”â€”â€”â€”â€”- NOTES â€”â€”â€”â€”â€”â€”-
214 See below for citations regarding linkage of God’s potential to man’s potential. Note that TB Hagigah 1 lb admonishes against inquiry into origins or futures. However, the works of Maimonides and other medievals, aside from the kabbalists, stand as clear counterweights to this admonition.
215 See Isaac the Blind, “God beheld in Himself these essences, which would manifest themselves at the creation of the world.” As cited in Scholem, Origins of the Kabbalah, p. 281. Scholem’s footnote 172 says: “As quoted in Sefer ha-Emunah weha-Bittahon, chap. 18, and in somewhat better text, in the old miscellanies preserved in Ms. Christ Church College 198, fol. 25b.” Isaac the Blind, son of the Rabad, Provence, France, is referred to by Scholem as “the central figure in the oldest Kabbalah.” Ibid., p. 252. Cf. Isaac the Blind’s commentary on the begining of Midrash Konen, as cited in Scholem, ibid., p. 287. Cf. ibid., p. 451, citing a text of the kabbalists of Gerona. “Before God created the world . . .all things were mixed together and all the essences were hidden, for He had not yet brought them forth from potentiality to reality, like a tree in whose potency the fruit is already present.” Scholem footnote 205 says: “Thus in Ms. British Museum, Margoliouth 752, fol. 36a. A very similar passage also in Kether Shem Tob in Jellinek, Auswahl kabbalistischer Mystik, 41 .”
Cf. Abraham Ibn Ezra in his commentary on Daniel 10:21. “And man alone is the foundation of the sublunar world and it is because of him that the world was created, his soul being linked to the Upper Soul.” As cited in Stitskin, Eight Jewish Philosophers, p. 120.
Cf. Saadia Gaon, Beliefs and Opinions 4:1. “Although man is not the largest of the creatures, by virtue of his soul he encompasses the entire universe.”
Cf. Bokser, Abraham Isaac Kook, p. 379.
Cf. Kant’s argument in favor of the “principle of plentitude” (the principle that whatever can exist must somewhere actually exist, since otherwise the creative capacity of God would not be fully realized): “It would be absurd to represent the Deity as bringing into action only a small part of his creative potency.” From Kant, Allgemeine Naturgeschichte und Theorie des Himmels (1 755), pt. 11, chap. vii, as trans. in A. O. Lovejoy, The Great Chain of Being, p. 140. Cited in Passmore, The Perfectibility of Man, p. 216.
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