The Zohar and its research
|מדעי הרוח | לימודי התרבות העברית
The Zohar and its research.
This seminar is designated for the advanced students of the Zohar and it is different from any of my earlier courses on the Zohar. We will focus mainly on the Zoharic unit titled ‘Matnitin’. This unit is a collection of fascinating texts which are relatively short (each of them is only about half a page long): they are very poetic and rhythmic, presenting a unique thematic discussion of God's nature and of the world's structure.
Analysis of their theology proves they belong to Proto-Kabbalistic thought, which preceded the development of the theosophic notion of the Sefirot in Provence. In order to better understand their meaning and context we will compare the extant printed versions to those extant in manuscripts, and will use this opportunity to learn more about the early roots of Kabbalah.
Thus the Matnitin's texts are the epitome of Zoharic writing and at the same time an unexpected opening for getting acquainted with Jewish mysticism at the beginning of the second millennium.