300.23 Shorthand: Symbolism of Eden Parable (pps.86-87)

hard cover page 86

The Garden of Eden saga, properly interpreted, symbolizes the overriding cosmic inverse,314 whose workings may not be impeded.315

The Midrash portrays Abraham as expostulating with God: “If you want a world, you will not have justice; if it is justice you want, there will be no world. You are taking hold of the rope

——————- NOTES ——————-

314 See Cohen, The Tremendum, pp. 27-28. “It is of the nature of the human that we live on two sides always: one illuminated, the other remaining in darkness. . . . These bivalences of the human exist. . . these contrarieties inhere in the human . . . bifurcated creature in a bifurcated universe, man doubled in a universe that is doubled, fractured man, prisoner of contradic- tion in a universe no less cut in two.”

315 Midrash Bereshit Rabbah 14 addresses the question of why there is a seemingly extraneous consonant y (yod) in the Hebrew Vayyizer in the phrase “Then the Lord God formed the man” (Genesis 2:7). The consensus is that the connotation is for two formations, with variations of that theme offered: (1) Adam/Eve, (2) the celestial/the earthly, (3) good/eviI, and (4) this world/the next world. We would parallel (3) and offer (5)Tree of Life/Tree of Knowl- edge; i.e., two possible world paths were open to man.
Cf. Midrash Rabbah, Genesis 21:5-6. ” ‘Behold, the man has become as one of us.’ . . . Said R. Akiba to him. . . How then do you interpret Mimmennu? It means that the Holy One, blessed be He, set two ways before him, life and death, and he chose the other path.” (Commentary: “that which God did not wish him to choose,” viz., death. Th.: R. Akiba treats mimmennu as third- person singular [“of himself”], not first-person plural [“of us”], translating: “Behold, the man has become as one who knows good and evil of himself, of his own free will, and thereby has himself chosen the path of death.”)


CONVERSION TABLE for this multi-page unit
you are currently on hard cover p. 86
Pages pointer hard cover page

Pages: 1 2