[asa] Re No Adam

From: Jim Armstrong <jarmstro@qwest.net>
Date: Sat May 02 2009 - 18:52:03 EDT

Funny timing - Just after I punched off my last comments, I received an article containing the passage below. It was from a writing,  People of the Ear!   found on

JimA [Friend of ASA]

Although Jews are called the 'People of the Book', they are not. They are, in fact, the people of the ear. The Torah is not to be read but to be heard. Neither was it writtenin the conventional sense of the word. It was the Divine word spoken at Sinai, which had to be heard and which afterwards, out of pure necessity, "unfortunately" became frozen in a text, but with the sole intention to be immediately "defrosted" through the art of hearing. This then became the great foundation of the Jewish Oral Tradition.

Reading entails the use of ones' eyes and, as such, the act stays external. It does not become "inscribed" into the very soul of the reader. Rabbi Yaacov Leiner, the author of "Beis Yaacov," son of the famous Ishbitzer Rebbe, Rabbi Mordechai Josef Leiner, and one of the keenest minds in the Chassidic tradition, speaks about "seeing" and makes the valuable observation that sight discloses the external aspect of objects while hearing reveals their inwardness. (3) One must hear a text, not read it. This is the reason that the body of Torah consists of a minimum of words, yet a maximum amount of oral interpretation.

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