This is the second follow-up to the post, “Gagarin and the Seven Heavens“. The first follow-up post is here. Continue reading
Seven Days, Seven Speeches
I am not a Hebrew Bible scholar, simply an interested layman. Nonetheless, I remember hearing someone say, over fifteen years ago, that Genesis 1 was really a ritual text; I fell in love with this idea before I became acquainted with the arguments, given how I loved the poetry of the text, and hated Creationism. I have the relevant articles somewhere tucked away, and was not able to consult them for this, but a few words at the outset, before the skeleton of the argument: not all scholars agree with this. The illustrious Jon D. Levenson, in his excellent Creation and the Persistence of Evil, cites the arguments below, and the articles it is based upon, with only partial agreement. I found Jon’s fascinated wariness too cautious. I should say that Crispin H.T. Fletcher-Louis, here, in a two-part article “The Cosmology of P and Theological Anthropology in the Wisdom of Jesus ben Sirach” (scroll down a bit to get to the link to the PDF of the article), does find this convincing, finds another more dramatic example of this in the priestly literature of the book of Sirach (sometimes called “Ecclesiasticus” — not to be confused with Ecclesiastes), and I found Fletcher-Louis persuasive. Beyond Peter Kearney’s Creation and Liturgy, which turned me on to this idea in the first place, I cannot recall the names of the articles that first proposed these links, though I have them in a binder somewhere for another day, for another amplified and thoroughly annotated version of this post.