Tag Archives: Bible

(What Are These Things) Material Judaism & Priestly Religion (Sarah Kayla Jacobs)

Yesterday at Ansche Chesed, Sarah Kaya Jacobs gave these words about some of the most arcane material in the Hebrew Bible: matters relating to the Tabernacle cult and the vestments of the High Priest, in particular. The material appears in … Continue reading

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(10 Commandments) Sabbath & The Jealous Mother God of Modern Bourgeois Judaism (Hertz Pentateuch)

[photograph of Malka Mollie Fedder, my father’s maternal grandmother] What are the so-called 10 commandments? Are they a foundation of law, the political law of a polis? Or something else? Are they the law of God the Father? Or someone … Continue reading

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(Rashi) God’s Great Hand (Man Ray)

[Man Ray, Hand on Lips, 1926] Most translations in English elide the anthropomorphism. “And Israel saw the great hand…”  (Ex. 14:31). According to Rashi, “hand” refers the great power done by the hand of the Holy one Blessed be He. … Continue reading

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Genesis High Sublime English Bourgeois Dudgeon (Hertz Commentary)

At Ansche Chesed the old Hertz edition of Pentateuch & Haftorah sit off neglected in the row of pews to the right and to the left of the two large rows of pews occupying the center column of the sanctuary. There, … Continue reading

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(Jacob & 12 Sons) Savage Jews (Francisco de Zurbarán)

What the hell kind of Jews are these? Am not sure I’ve ever seen anything like Francisco de Zurbarán’s Jacob and His Twelve Sons: Paintings from Auckland Castle, which were on view at and soon to leave the Frick. Painted in between … Continue reading

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Baroque Nipple (David & Goliath) (Guido Cagnacci)

Deciding not to do departmental paperwork today, I went to the Met to see the Michelangelo and Hockney shows. Wandering around on my way out I stepped into the main foyer of the European galleries to meet this fetching baroque … Continue reading

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Genesis (Earth Grassing Grasses, Seed Seeding Plants, Fruit Making Fruit Trees)

  I spent some time staring at the Hebrew in synagogue this week, particularly vivid, but lost in translation. Earth being the active subject of Genesis 1:11-12 requires peculiar linguistic convolutions. 11…T’dashe ha’aretz deshe esev mazriah zerah etz pri osheh … Continue reading

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