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«WITHOUT MEASURE AND WITHOUT ANALOGY»: THE TRADITION OF THE DIVINE BODY IN 2 (SLAVONIC) ENOCH

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The artice investigates the origins of the Shiccur Qomah tradition. This tradition depicts visionaries, Rabbi Ishmael and Rabbi Akiba, receiving from the supreme angel Metatron revelations of the «measurement of the body» (in Hebrew, Shiccur Qomah), an anthropomorphic description of the Deity together with the mystical names of its gigantic limbs. Although the majority of the evidence of the the Shiccur Qomah tradition survived in late Jewish writings, Gershom Scholem argued that the beginning of Shiccur Qomah speculations can be found in 2 (Slavonic) Enoch where one can find the description of the appearance of the Lord as a terrifying extent analogous to the human form. The article develops Scholem's hypothesis arguing that the traditions about the divine body in 2 Enoch were shaped by the early Adamic traditions. The portrayal of the prelapsarian Adam found in the longer recension of 2 Enoch reveals fascinating similarities to the later Shiccur Qomah descriptions.

10.1163/18177565-90000156
/content/journals/10.1163/18177565-90000156
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/content/journals/10.1163/18177565-90000156
2007-03-30
2017-12-14

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