[b-hebrew] Re: nephesh mot]

Deborah Millier deborahmillier at yahoo.com
Tue Aug 26 22:35:37 EDT 2003


R. Furuli wrote to P. Kirk:

> The context is not needed at 
> all in connection with the 
> *lexical meaning* of a  Hebrew 
> word, because this meaning 
> is found in the Hebrew mind. 
> But for the purpose of reference, 
> of modification, specification, 
> stress etc the context is needed, 
> but in this connection we should 
> not speak of lexical semantics 
> (lexical meaning).

Quick question: how can the "Hebrew mind" be the
source of biblical word meaning, even with its
uniform(?!?!) "presupposition pool," since every
individual "Hebrew mind" learned its own language and
a good portion of its "presupposition[s]" while
hanging out with ABBA V'IMMA?  Or whoever.  Right?

Again, very inductive.

> The disadvantage is that 
> many modern persons already 
> has, because of religious 
> dogma, a concept of "soul" 
> which is very far from the 
> original NEPE$. 

I keep reading the above in different words, from
various posters, and I still issue the challenge to
prove it.  Who can prove that this concept of
NEFESH=soul found in the Intertestamental Writings,
the Mishna, and the New Testament was simply adopted
from the Greeks?  Counter to "the Hebrew mind." 
Wouldn't it be better for us to admit that this is
merely a working assumption?  Not a fact.

Isn't it just as possible that the kernel of an
immaterial NEFESH was already in the TNKH and then
later fleshed out using Greek terminology and
concepts?  Who has offered a better interpretation of:

VA-Y'HI B'TZET NAFSHAH... (Gen. 35:18).

And:

TASHAV NEFESH-HA-YELED... (2Kgs. 17:21, 22).

Aren't we here approaching this idea of an immaterial
NEFESH, distinct from the body, related to life, which
leaves at death, etc?

SHUV SHO'EL,
-- Michael Millier


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