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Kabbalah Question

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Kabbalah Question

Postby Kopio » Sun Jun 12, 2005 2:13 am

Hello All,

I was wondering if any one here knows anything about Kabbalah Manuscrpits??

What are the earliust extant manuscrpits of the Kaballah?
When was it originally supposed to be written?
Do you know of any good pages with solid scholarship that you could link me to??

Any help would be great.
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Re: Kabbalah Question

Postby JLatin1 » Sun Jun 12, 2005 2:20 am

Kopio wrote:Hello All,

I was wondering if any one here knows anything about Kabbalah Manuscrpits??

What are the earliust extant manuscrpits of the Kaballah?
When was it originally supposed to be written?
Do you know of any good pages with solid scholarship that you could link me to??

Any help would be great.


Here's a good link:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kabbalah#Primary_texts.

There are some good links on the bottom. Don't know about extant manuscripts though.

-Jonathan.
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Postby annis » Sun Jun 12, 2005 4:34 pm

Woah, Kopio, the new-house work already getting to you? A Golem is a famously unreliable way to get extra work done.
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Postby Kopio » Tue Jun 14, 2005 3:33 am

annis wrote:Woah, Kopio, the new-house work already getting to you? A Golem is a famously unreliable way to get extra work done.


You're too funny! Boy, if I could make it happen, it might be enough to make me run off from my evangelical roots! :twisted:
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Re: Kabbalah Question

Postby yadfothgildloc » Tue Jun 14, 2005 10:13 pm

Kopio wrote:Hello All,

I was wondering if any one here knows anything about Kabbalah Manuscrpits??

What are the earliust extant manuscrpits of the Kaballah?
When was it originally supposed to be written?
Do you know of any good pages with solid scholarship that you could link me to??

Any help would be great.


Check out the book "Kabbalah" by Gershem Scholem. The earliest manuscript of the Sefer haZohar is from 1400s, I beleive. I don't know the dates for the sefer yetzirah or the sefer binah. Most of the other kabbalistic works were written after the birth of the Ba'al Shem Tov, and so are within the last three centuries (like the sefer Tanya aka sefer benyonim aka likutei amarim of R' Shneur Zalman of Liadi and the Likutei Mohar"n of Rebbe Nachman of Breslov). The Ari (z"l) is rather ancient, though, but I don't know the manuscript tradition,
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Postby Johannes_Vigorniae » Mon Jun 20, 2005 11:26 pm

Or more broadly Scholem's Major Trends in Jewish Mysticism. If you count the Merkavah texts as proto-Kabbalah, you might say 5th century AD. I think Scholem gave Sepher Yetzirah an early date - 6-7th Century - but I could be mistaken, as it must be ten or fifteen years since I read Major Trends. First manuscripts rather later, though.
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Postby Kopio » Tue Jun 21, 2005 4:37 am

Thanks for the info Johannes. I began wondering about the Kaballah when a co-worker said she was "into it". By into it I think she means at a very superficial, trendy, hip way that so many Hollywood stars are "into it" today. She said that Kaballah is as old as the Pentateuch, which got me (a self admitted Textual Criticism geek) wondering about earliest dates of manuscripts. Although I don't doubt Kaballistic thought very early in Judiasm, I thought that most of the actual documentation was fairly late. She seemed to think there were very old documents....which simply confirms my suspicions about her being "into it" :lol:

If I had more time, I might look into it.....I'm thinking a Golem could have really helped with the yardwork today!
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Postby Johannes_Vigorniae » Tue Jun 21, 2005 4:57 pm

Kopio wrote:She seemed to think there were very old documents....


Well, Kopio, let's not forget Ebay regards pre-1940 books as antiquarian :).

The kaballah (which , after all, primarily means 'tradition' and in this context 'mystical tradition') took a long time - perhaps 800 years - to evolve into its latest form. Its key text, the Zohar, is a pseudepigraphical work of the high middle ages, in a highly artificial Aramaic that no-one ever spoke. You might say it was a literary forgery, like Geoffrey de Mandeville's Travels, though whether it contains - like de Mandeville - traditions systemized into an integrated whole, I couldn't say.

BTW, concerning your colleague, Jewish tradition suggests one should be 40 and male to even start the study of kaballah. I do hope she's not admitting to her age... :shock:
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Postby Kopio » Tue Jun 21, 2005 5:38 pm

Johannes_Vigorniae wrote:BTW, concerning your colleague, Jewish tradition suggests one should be 40 and male to even start the study of kaballah. I do hope she's not admitting to her age... :shock:

No....I think she is only 17 or 18. She's a nice kid with above average wit and intellegence. One of those people that is just enjoyable to talk to. I think part of it is that she's trying to sound impressive to an (a title I'm still getting used to!)
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