By Seth L. Sanders, Jonathan Ben-Dov
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Extra info for Ancient Jewish Sciences and the History of Knowledge in Second Temple Literature
Menaḥot 99b; b. Bava Qamma 83a. See further my essay “Hellenism and Hellenization as Problematic Historiographical Categories,” in Paul Beyond the Judaism/Hellenism Divide (ed. Troels Engberg-Pedersen; Louisville, London, Leiden: Westminster John Knox Press, 2001), 63–80. 12 “Bavli Berakhot 55a-57b: The Talmudic Dreambook in Context,” JJS 46 (1995): 230-248. 11 2. 15 Sefer Yetzirah proposes essentially an atomic model of the cosmos, in which all the diverse entities of the phenomenal world are seen as different combinations of twenty-two primary elements, symbolized by the twenty-two letters of the Hebrew alphabet.
D. Patterns: In all of these sections there are certain patterns that can be summarized as follows. 1. The laws governing the creation are unchanging. 14 a. 1 Enoch 72:1, a passage not reflected in the Aramaic fragments but entirely consistent with them, enunciates the point clearly: “The book about the motion of the heavenly luminaries, all as they are in their kinds, their jurisdiction, their time, their name, their origins, and their months which Uriel, the holy angel who was with me (and) who is their leader, showed me.
He who does a deed is stoned; he who holds the eyes is exempt, yet it is forbidden. What is entirely permitted? ” 17 Raphael Patai, The Jewish Alchemists (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1994). 18 Biblisch-talmudische Medizin (Berlin: S. Karger, 1911; repr. Farnborough, Hants: Gregg International, 1969; English version trans. F. Rosner; New York and London: Sanhedrin Press, 1978). 16 2. 19 Whatever the deep ‘logics’ of the Talmud may be, it is simply not true as a matter of historical fact to say that Jews—even Rabbinic Jews—were totally uninterested in the natural sciences in late antiquity.
Ancient Jewish Sciences and the History of Knowledge in Second Temple Literature by Seth L. Sanders, Jonathan Ben-Dov