נקבה: הקרבנות והכפרות
Introduction to a Recently Completed Book
The following is the introduction to a book I just completed. The Dead Scrolls contain many wonders. If the Scrolls are read correctly, they will change the way you experience Judaism forever. You will be transported back to the time that the Cohenim served, in purity and in righteousness, in the Temples. You will come to experience Torah as they knew it. You will be liberated from the distortions and vexations of the Soul we find in Judaism as we know it today. There are many lessons that we can learn from the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’. This book, הנקבה: הקרבנות והכפרות focuses on the authentic place of the female in Judaism and how she is intimately connected with the atonement brought about by עבודת הכהנים.
Details of publication will follow, please God.
All rights reserved to the author. No portion may be copied, edited or distributed without the express written permission of the author.
הנקבה: הקרבנות והכפרות
The following revelations are not entirely unexpected, yet they startle the mind, as well as delight the heart, nonetheless. They clearly demonstrate that the attainment of joy on the part of the Jewish female was central in the purification rites that were performed in the Temples. We may infer that if the Service is to be renewed in the Third Temple the central role that the joy of the Jewish female plays must be understood and appreciated. The tradition of הפרושים (the Pharisees) and subsequently of their students, the Rabbis, teaches us that השכינה (the feminine presence of God) only rests upon an individual, or the community of ישראל, when we are in the spirit of joy in doing a mitzvah. Upon in-depth examination of the texts of the ‘Dead Sea Sect’ (היחד) [and there is every reason to concur with those who posit the theory that they represent the view of righteous בני צדוק (those Sadducees who remained true to the traditional religion and Temple Service)] that were recovered from the library in the area that is now known as Khirbet Qumran, we find a much more integrated understanding of the interaction of the feminine Godly Aspect, and real-life, this-worldly Jewish women than the one we are familiar with as taught by the Pharisees and their students the Rabbis. We will demonstrate, בע"ה, that the self-same texts which, on the surface appear to be pedantic reproofs, admonitions and dire warnings concerning the scrupulous keeping of the laws of purity and modesty on the part of women, are actually teachings using the very particular characteristics of Hebrew, the Holy Language, to remind those who had thrown off the yoke of תורה that no expiation for ישראל can come about without bringing joy to the hearts of the Jewish female. It is the Jewish female who suffers the effects of the sins of ישראל most immediately and piteously. This is the reason for the absolute necessity for women to be as pure in body, mind and Soul as possible in this world; it is by no means an expression of being repulsed by women or feeling superior to women in any way. It is understood that a Jewish woman cannot be joyful if she does not live in a state of purity in her thoughts, actions and service to ה' יתברך. It is also understood that if ישראל does not live in the state of moral/spiritual/societal purity described in תורה there can be no true joy for Jewish females and, thus, no expiation for the entire community. The attainment of joy by the women of ישראל is the sine qua non
for purification and the pardoning of sins on the part of the entire Jewish People, as we will see. Jewish men are enjoined to do everything in their power to bring joy into the hearts of the women of ישראל, indeed this was the most important part of the rites that הכהנים performed. Jewish women are commanded to be pure so that they may be joyous – this for the sake of the entire עם ישראל. The attainment of joy on the part of the Jewish female is the highest moral/spiritual attainment on the part of the individual and the basis upon which all righteousness and holiness in Jewish society lies. While it is true that the joy of the Jewish woman is dependent upon the sanctity of כל בית ישראל, the willing of her heart to be joyful despite the sin of ישראל has a purifying effect on the entire community. The existence of the female is very difficult and can easily enough lead to sadness, even despair. Therefore, a woman who has, by force of her own will, attained the spiritual discipline necessary in order to impose joy upon her heart to serve ה' ישתבח שמו has performed the utmost that she can for the Jewish People and this brings about an eternal rectification, which affects every generation – her own, the generations before and hence - as we shall see, בע"ה. This in no wise relieves the קהלת ישראל from its responsibility of forming a Jewish society that eases this task for the Jewish female. The attaining of joy should not and need not, be a superhuman task for the Jewish woman to perform. It is preferable that her attainment of joy is a natural phenomenon occurring within Jewish society, as a matter of course, not a supernatural phenomenon occurring despite prevailing conditions.
We will demonstrate some חילופים for proper nouns, pronouns and nouns that are traditionally understood to be directly related to and/or associated with the female in particular, as well as both ‘positive’ and ‘negative’ concepts that are traditionally directly related to and/or associated with the feminine in תנ"ך and the interpretation and development of Jewish Law, as it has been handed down to us, namely הלכה. הלכה is evidently a term coined by הפרושים, that was not only not adopted by היחד, but used by them derisively when referring to the Pharisees’ methods of interpretation of תורה [see The Zadokite Fragments (also called The Damascus Document = 4Q266 2 I-II; 4Q268 1) Col. I:18. We will see that, in light of the rectification that knowledge of the חילופים brings about, the most holy is revealed in that which is normally considered immodest, defiled, impure or otherwise negative. In other words, the performance of the חילופים is that which reveals one’s inner holiness. Her inner Godliness having been revealed to her consciousness the holiness becomes a part of the outward comportment of the Jewish female. Her נשמה (Jewish Soul), mind, emotional structure and body having been unified in the conscious awareness of her holiness, the Jewish woman attains the state of joy that brings about the rectification of the entire Jewish People. This being the case, it is understood that not only is תלמוד תורה permitted to women, it is essential
that Jewish women learn the depths of the secrets of תורה. That is to say, Jewish women must
become experts in the techniques of the שינויים and the חילופים that bring about the purification of consciousness. It should be needless to say that it becomes incumbent upon any Jew who has learned תורה not only to comport her/himself in accordance with what one has learned, but also to teach that which one has learned in turn. Jewish women, then, it would stand to reason, are intended to be not only students but also teachers of the most profound levels of תורה.
Some חילופים will be offered in this book for some of the names of the most notable personages and concepts traditionally thought of as quintessentially male in תנ"ך. The female aspects of these ‘male’ proper nouns will become evident in light of the חילופים. We will not be considering why male and female forms exist in the structure of the Hebrew language in the course of this book.
In most cases the author will allow the חילופים to speak for themselves. The חילופים reveal knowledge vastly more effectively, and concisely, than does prose. However, when the need arises for particular clarification or comment remarks will be made, בע"ה.
Our discussion of the subject of the joy of the Jewish female and its central role in purification of the individual and of עם ישראל as a whole must necessarily be perfunctory and partial. The subject matter is so great that we are moved to paraphrase in regard to the ‘Dead Sea Sect’ (היחד) the eloquent quote attributed to Rabban Yochanan ben Zakkai praising his teachers (seeמסכת סופרים פרק ט"ז, הלכה ח' ): “If all the skies were to become parchments, all the trees quill pens, and all the oceans ink” we could not begin to give justice to the depth and holiness of the subject or give thanks to אלה-י ישראל for revealing this knowledge to היחד and their painstaking devotion in passing it, in turn, to us. We must make do with a glimpse into the Holy of Holies. It behooves the author to express her profound gratitude and indebtedness to the authors and preservers of the Scrolls found in the library in what is today known as Khirbet Qumran for the knowledge they lovingly learned, preserved and transmitted to us. Surely I had been learning the חילופים for years before reading the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’ and many of the חילופים presented in this book were learned directly from תנ"ך and תושב"ע, according to the Pharisaic-Rabbinic tradition, as well as classical Jewish commentary and ‘mystical’ writings. Having learned from the Rabbis we can better appreciate the richness of the treasure that is ‘the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’. We are enjoined to honor and praise our teachers and mention them by name in accordance with הלכה. Yet, despite many years of exertions in my studies, it was not until encountering the terms and concepts in the Scrolls found at ‘Qumran’ that I was able to see with exquisite clarity what the Pharisaic-Rabbinic tradition was relating confusedly, with stuttering speech and halting step. Only by reading the works of some of בני צדוק who actually served in the Temple in accordance with the tradition handed down to them since the time of צדוק בן אחיטוב, הכהן הגדול, ז"ל in the days of King David (see שמ"ב ט"ו : מ-כ"ד and דברי הימים א' ה : ל"ח) and who understood the meaning of the service they were performing, was I able to see that bringing about the joy of women is the actual expiation and purification rites themselves. Surely the holiness and healing properties of joy is central to the understanding of all schools of Judaism. Yet nowhere in the Pharisaic-Rabbinic tradition did I ever encounter the comprehensive and immediately apprehensible integration of the understanding of the Godly and the this-worldly in the expiating effect of joy, particularly that of women, for the sake of כלל ישראל and indeed all the Gentiles as well, that I found in the texts written and preserved by the ‘Dead Sea Sect’ (היחד).
My gratitude is extended to all of the scholars without whose monumental labors of love we could not be privy to that which is contained in the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’.
In our times, and apparently during the ages we are aware of, few sought, and seek, the depths of the secrets of life if they have not been profoundly pained, deeply scarred and left utterly confused and filled with rage at a world that seems cruel and without purpose. Only those who have fallen, or have been thrown into, the maw of the abyss of sadness and from there cry out to ה' יתברך are taught the secrets of joy and purification. It is to the most broken, to the weakest and most helpless ones, that ה' יתברך שמו reveals Itself. This need not be so. Suffering need not, indeed should not, be the sine qua non for the revelation of ה'. In our times it would seem that those who seek God experience recurring cycles of revelation of joy and then abysmal sadness, followed by greater, clearer revelations of joy, then deeper depths of despair and despondency still, followed by yet another, higher revelation of joy and so on. When a person has made ה' their every strength and refuge that person is left utterly bereft during the periods when ה' hides Its face so that we may seek more urgently. Such is the way of the world now. It is a function of our own cruelty that we must experience pain to reach out to HaShem. It is certainly not HaShem’s Will that it be that way, although provisions are made for this stage in spiritual development in Torah. Upon consideration we see that induction into a higher state of morality/spirituality/consciousness via the portal of suffering is not a very effective way to grow morally/spiritually at all. The way is fraught with danger and many become less moral and spiritual as a result of their pain, rather than more. Some must hit “rock bottom” before they begin to search for God. After two thousand years of dispersion in the Diaspora, and having experienced every kind of hell imaginable, we have not been spiritually perfected, or even bettered. The opposite may indeed be true. This is reason enough to question whether what the Pharisaic/Rabbinic traditions teaches about the galut is sound. It is reason enough to call the commonly held belief that the Diaspora is a “tikkun” into serious doubt. If we are honest with ourselves we must come to the unsettling conclusion that all of the pain of the Diaspora is an unnecessary tragedy.
If there be one central purpose for the writing of this book it is so that the moral/spiritual path of pain will no longer be the way of the world, for it is not a necessary state. In fact, it is detrimental to our spiritual development. It is entirely possible, and desirable, that our moral/spiritual growth and development will proceed from one state of joy to the next greater state of joy. This is the true p’shat of: העדתי בכם היום את-השמים ואת-הארץ החיים והמות נתתי לפניך הברכה והקללה ובחרת בחיים למען תחיה אתה וזרעך. דברים ל:יט. May HaShem bless this work so that it may serve as a minor contribution to the revelation of how to attain a world characterized by greater happiness and wisdom. In fact, it is due to profound ignorance of Torah that we have been taught by our Rabbis that pain is the portal through which we must pass on the way to Godliness. That teaching, exaggerated and further distorted has come to haunt, torment and even torture us in the form of Christianity, which persecuted us throughout so many generations and still continued to vex us, yet we have not learned the error of our ways. We have sown the wind and reaped the whirlwind, and we do not see that our own misinterpretation of Torah has come back at us like a boomerang. Not only have we not learned the error of our ways, we take perverse pride in having performed the mitzvot under the worst of conditions, as though this is what HaShem desires from us.
One of the purposes of this work is to describe the type of Jewish society and approach to תלמוד תורה that are characterized by joy as a commonplace experience. It is entirely possible that we could be born into an ambience of joy and from that starting point progress from one level of joy and Godly inspiration to the next. Jewish society should not be structured such that the experience of rapture is rare, one in which we experience epiphanies here and there. תלמוד תורה should be a continuous experience of bliss and wonder at the greatness of ה'. The ‘Dead Sea Sect’ lived in this society and knew this way of תלמוד תורה. They describe them to us in the Scrolls they lovingly preserved and left to posterity. We would do well to heed their instruction.
There aren’t enough words of thanks and praise that I can offer to אלקי ישראל for having bestowed the knowledge contained in the Scrolls upon our ancestors, and upon us. There is no estimating the blessing of finding the writing of the ‘Dead Sea Sect’ (היחד) even as אל-הינו ואל-הי אבותינו was gathering and returning the scattered of our People to our Holy Land. Truly אל-הינו fulfills the promises made to our ancestors and to us. May our learning and doing of the mitzvot, as taught to us in the Scrolls, be our gift of praise and thanksgiving to אלקי ישראל who teachesתורה לישראל in every generation and gives every generation the ability to teach those who live with them, come after them, as well as to elevate the Souls of those who came before. May the memory of our forebears, our revered and holy teachers, protect us. May we express the love, honor, awe and blessings for them that they so richly deserve by learning that which they exerted themselves mightily to learn, to preserve and pass on to us, i.e., the Laws of all that pertains to טהר and טמא, as is in accordance with the command of ה' יתברך to עם ישראל as taught to us by the Prophet Y’chezki’el (see יחזקאל מ"ד:כ"ג).
It is my position that only scholarly Jews steeped in Jewish Law and learning in the Holy tongue, who are willing to read the texts without prejudice, allowing the authors of the Scrolls to speak for themselves should be on the team of those attempting to interpret the content and the Hebrew of the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’. The understanding of this bound-to-be-unpopular position is requested of the readers, Jewish and Gentile alike. It is certainly not a matter of mere bigotry, nor a lack of respect for the many great contributions to the research of the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’ that Gentiles have made, and that we pray will continue to make. Perhaps an analogy will help the reader understand why the author takes so unyielding a stance on this issue. (The following analogy was chosen only because the historic development of Buddhism from Hinduism is analogous in some ways to that of the historic development of Christianity from Judaism. It is not meant to cast aspersions upon Buddhists in any way, Heaven forfend! Neither do I mean to imply any sort of similarity between Judaism and the development of any other religion): Were a library hitherto unknown to be found in India, for instance, containing fragments of Scrolls, written mostly in Sanskrit, which carbon dating showed to originate from somewhere between the 7th or 8th Centuries BCE, some perhaps earlier, until the 5th or 4th Centuries BCE, that do not mention Gautama Buddah at all (Gautama Buddha was born in the 6th Century BCE), but speak exclusively of classical Hinduism before the advent of Buddhism, we would be appalled if Buddhist scholars were to attempt to interpret the Scrolls to prove that they are actually of Buddhist origin. The claim would be all the more incredulous if it could be reasonably demonstrated that some of the Scrolls are copies of manuscripts that were composed much earlier. If a country other than India were to arrogate the Scrolls by subterfuge, sell them outside India to foreign scholars, some of whom were professedly hostile to Hinduism and prevent native Hindu Indian scholars and experts in ancient Sanskrit access to them, the honest seekers of truth in the Hindu religious world, and the international academic world alike, would cry out against the injustice. If the foreign scholars were to monopolize publication of interpretations of the Scrolls, as well as hold them in their sole possession for decades, the reaction of religious and academic scholars, Hindu and non-Hindu alike, would be that of the profoundest outrage. All this, and more, was done with the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’. Tremendous damage was done, and is still being done, by Christian “scholars” who publish books and articles about the Scrolls irresponsibly and with the express purpose of furthering a Christian agenda. It will take many years before the misleading misinformation they published about the Scrolls will be reversed. It is because of their publications that many Orthodox Jews associate the Dead Sea Scrolls with Christianity and will not so much as consider their worth. This researcher and author, for one, works absolutely independently so as not to have to be financially or professionally beholden to any non-Jewish scholastic institutions or in need of research funds that come from non-Jewish sources.
In sharp contradistinction, the author’s special appreciation is extended to the many Gentile scientists and technical specialists whose tireless efforts have contributed and continue to contribute immeasurably to the research of the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’. The author respects the wisdom of the Gentile researchers who recognize the fact that only Jewish scholars who are fluent in the Hebrew language and intimately familiar with Jewish Law are able to understand the depths of the meaning of the Scrolls, and who do not attempt to engage in פרשנות של התורה, but rather support our work by way of scientific and technical contribution. Foreign approaches to religious texts, i.e. “hermeneutics” and “exegesis”, are inappropriate and inapplicable to תלמוד תורה. Fine examples of healthy, balanced and mutually respectful cooperation between Jews and Gentiles in studying the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’ are the analyses of the texts carried out by experts in digital imaging, Carbon dating and chemical analysis of the types of ink used to write the Scrolls.
of sacred Hebrew texts must be an area of study reserved only for Jews who have devoted their lives to the study of Jewish sources in the Holy Tongue, who do not reject the content of the Scrolls out of hand on the basis of the fact that they are not of Pharisaic provenance, and are willing to surrender the idea that Pharisaic Judaism is “superior” to that of the ‘Dead Sea Sect’ (היחד) in all matters.
Paleographic analysis of Hebrew texts is not a mere matter of studying types of letters that appear in Hebrew texts, comparing them with like types of scripts and then attempting to put them into an historical framework on the basis of those comparisons. Not only are the basic shapes of the Hebrew letters traditionally understood to be physical expressions of the spiritual/moral phonemes that are the building blocks of consciousness and with which the worlds are created (see מסכת שבת, דף ק"ד, עמ' א'), the variations of those shapes are traditionally understood to contain and relay profound meanings as well. It is for this reason that the traditional scripts of ספרי תורה vary among the Jewish ethnic groups. We cannot, with any certainty, posit that given Hebrew writing styles are characteristic of certain eras, each era succeeding the one before it in time, time being conceived of as a ray, and eras being conceived of as segments of the ray. Rather, Hebrew writing styles are expressions of schools of פרשנות, each purposefully developed, each relaying very specific information that the others do not. Let us not assume, as does Professor Lawrence H. Schiffman, that those who copied and composed the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’ were less able to calculate “chronology” than we (please see RECLAIMING THE DEAD SEA SCROLLS, published by Doubleday, text copyright 1995 by Lawrence H. Schiffman, The Exodus to Qumran, pg. 91). Their experience of time was very different than ours. They were far more adept at reading and understanding the Hebrew תורה and plumbing its depths than we. It is, then, necessarily true that their concept of, relation to and command of time was vastly greater than ours as we as we can see from the following חילופים:
זמן = 747 = מקראות = להבין
One of the lessons that the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’ impart is that time is created in accordance with the moral/spiritual level upon which one learns תורה and that it behooves us too to learn how to create a more flexible and benign concept of time than we do. We are invited by the authors, copyists and redactors of the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’ to learn to relate to time as they did, that is, as a function of תלמוד תורה, not to attempt to artificially, and one should say quite unsuccessfully, make the Scrolls conform to the currently agreed upon conception and experience of time. It would serve us well to understand that the גלות we are in is precisely our ignorance of how to read עברית. We are hardly in a position to determine how and what the members of the ‘Dead Sea Sect’ were capable of perceiving or how they came to their conclusions and understanding. Their consciousness was fully steeped in the Holy Language. It is ours to humbly learn from them, not to attempt ‘heroic’ means to bring their writings into compliance with our worldview. Once again: זמן = 747 = מקראות = להבין. We must pay Carbon dating and other techniques of dating objects their due respect, but not skew our understanding of the Scrolls to conform to them. (The very word chronology is a clarion warning for us to beware of employing this way of thinking and analyzing when we are concerned with Hebrew texts. Chronology is a word compounded of the name of a pagan god and a way of thinking that comes from a tradition that was so abominable to devout Jews that they were willing to risk their lives rather than have it become part and parcel of their system of Biblical interpretation. It is far more likely that those who authored and copied the Scrolls found at Khirbet Qumran we not unaware of “chronology”, as conceived of by the Greco-Romans, rather they were vehemently opposed to apprehending events “chronologically”. בע"ה we will see some חילופים for the word שנים = נשים further on in this book.)
Orthography of Hebrew texts, as we shall see in this book, בע"ה, is firmly subsumed under פרשנות and thus must not be left to those outside of our holy tradition to make determinations about. A classic example of far-fetched orthographic ‘analysis’ of Hebrew on the part of a Gentile is GESENIUS’ HEBREW GRAMMAR. The book, however, is a masterpiece of compilation of cites of ‘variant’ spellings and forms. While Gesenius’ conjectures as to why the forms he considered anomalous exist can be fairly discarded wholesale, we must respect his keen eye for detail and we are indebted to him for the painstaking labor he invested in compiling the cites. We can, and should, employ the work of Gentiles in our studies, but we must be careful not to adopt their modes of thinking about the Hebrew language. Neither should we be tempted to employ their methods of “hermeneutics” and “exegesis” in understanding תורה in order to make the scholarly impression expected in the established academic community.
Inestimable damage has been done to Jewish scholarship and reconstruction of the Judaism of the ‘Dead Sea Sect’ (היחד) by Gentile scholars who tortured the Scrolls into saying what they do not and published their interpretations widely. The problem of the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’ being associated with Christianity is compounded by the political/religious hegemony of the Pharisees who much maligned any but other Pharisaic Jews by subsuming them all under the global pejorative term "מינים" and who, evidently, attempted to “archive” all texts that they themselves did not write and/or approve of into oblivion.
Blessed are they who approach the study of the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’ with openness, humility and with the sacred awe they so richly deserve, as well as with a willingness to incorporate the teachings found in the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’ into a fuller, richer, more comprehensive, more authentic and less paltry form of Judaism than the one that has been bequeathed to us for these more than two thousand years by the Pharisaic/Rabbinic tradition. May they rejoice in their portion for their exertions. May their portion be large, full, rich and satisfying.
The Internet does not always avail us of the presentation of the Hebrew punctuation marks. For this reason we will write in כתיב מלא when explaining matters in order to ensure that the meaning is clear to the reader. The words חלופים and שנויים will appear here spelled חילופים and שינויים due to this constraint. As we shall see throughout the course of this book the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’ inform us that there is traditional justification in adopting the practice of writing in כתיב מלא. We shall, בע"ה, discuss the frequent use of the letter ו' in place of the punctuation mark חלם in the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’. For instance, the name ישרון is never written with two ווי"ן in תנ"ך, yet we find the name written ישורון in fragment 4Q503 29-32viii6. We understand, then, that the ‘Dead Sea Sect’ (היחד) inherited a tradition of writing words with the addition of the letter ו' as perfectly acceptable and correct spellings of words, not only in place of the punctuation mark חלם, but also in place of the punctuation mark קבוץ. Perhaps the justification for doing so is the appearance of the name זבלון written variously throughout תנ"ך. We may infer, however, that there may be preferred spellings in Hebrew. The name זבלון is an excellent example of this. Although the name זבלון, punctuated with a קבוץ and then a שורק, is not the form used an overwhelmingly large number of times in תנ"ך, or even in חומש for that matter, it is the form that is used in ספר בראשית when ה' יתברך שמו tells us why Z’vulun’s mother, לאה, calls him זבלון when he is born. That is to say, the mega-concept זבלון coming into creation appears in the form of the name being punctuated first with a קבוץ and then with a שורק. Additionally, זבלון punctuated first with a קבוץ and then with a שורק is the only form of the name that appears in ספר דברי הימים.)
Within the demonstrations of theחילופים either כתיב מלא or כתיב חסר will be employed as dictated by the value of the חילוף .
The symbol “*” before a word or phrase within the demonstrations of the חילופים will come to tell us that an explanation of the חילוף will follow the last of the חילופים presented for that particular value. In some cases there will be more explanations given for more than one חילוף for a given value. In those cases the חילופים being explained will have one, then two, then three and so on stars before them “*’, “**”, “***”…
Although great care has been taken in the writing, editing and re-editing of this book it is well nigh inevitable that there will be typing errors in a piece such as this, no matter how careful one is in the work. The author requests the reader to alert her to any errors in the text and to pose any questions that may arise as to the correctness of any given חילוף.
דורין אלן בל-דותן
Doreen Ellen Bell-Dotan
P.O. Box 503
Tzfat, Yisra’el 13104
Cell Phone: 051-412031
E-mail: DoreenDotan@gmail.com OR email@example.com