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Some Observations of Philo's De Gigantibus and Evil Spirits in Second Temple Judaism

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The following discussion delineates Philo's interpretation of Genesis 6:1-4 in his various treatises. The presentation provides a brief description of his understanding of the journey of the soul, which includes the origin of the soul, its place in the heavens, its time on earth, and its eventual return to the divine realm. Throughout the discussion, I will introduce various points of the interpretation of the Genesis passage found in the Watcher tradition of 1 Enoch and its adaptation in various documents in Second Temple Jewish literature. In doing so, I will highlight the similarities and differences between the interpretations which suggest Philo had knowledge of some form of the Watcher tradition and was perhaps attempting to write a corrective of its understanding of the problem of evil and the cause of human suffering in the first century C.E.


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