God's name: was Curious abut "G-d"

Shoshanna Walker rosewalk at concentric.net
Wed Jan 23 19:11:53 EST 2002


Only the High Priest knew how to pronounce the Name, and was the only 
one permitted to pronounce the Name, once a year, on Yom Kippur, in 
the Inner Chamber of the Temple, where no one else was ever permitted 
except for him, and only on this one day per year.  In case he DIED 
from not being sufficiently spiritually prepared for the sheer 
holiness of the experience, a rope was tied to him, so that they 
could pull him out if necessary, without having to go in.

And you tell us that there is a - modern - non Jewish - BOOK - which 
purports to discuss the pronunciation of this holy Name????????

Is this author really serious?  What utter chutzpa!  What is there to 
discuss, what is the need that people feel, to what purpose do they 
think they need to know the  pronunciation of the Name?  They 
wouldn't even know what to do with it, even if they knew how to 
pronounce it, and worse, it could cause them great damage, if they 
were not meant to know.....


There is a new book on this subject that soon will be published in
English. I have read the French edition: "Gérard Gertoux (1999) Un
Historique du Nom Divin YHWH, Paris: L'Harmattan. It will soon be
published in English by "University Press of America": I got a
pre-publication discount of 20 % by ordering it last week
(custserv at rowman.com.); ordinary price is $ 47.

The author has marshaled a huge amount of material from Hebrew and
cognate languages, and while it is difficult to draw definite
conclusions regarding the pronunciation of the name, this is the most
thorough discussion I have seen.



Rolf Furuli
University of Oslo

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