Bereshit 5777

Man’s first task is to name animals, his first words are a string of nouns. He longs for verbs. On seeing a female, he bursts into a love-poem: “Finally! Flesh of my flesh, bone of my bones!” He struggles to create a new noun and express what it does. This shall be called Woman, for she was taken from Man.” Passive verbs, but the start of a relationship. She is his partner, his echo, his lover, totality. His last words are finally active, and also a plea to transcend language altogether: “Man… shall cleave to Woman, becoming one flesh.” Like God, man creates worlds from words; like God, it is relationships rather than objects that he ultimately seeks to create.

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[Inspired by: Genesis 2:23 ; Zohar Bereshit 49b;  Hadassa Fruman and R. Yaakov Nagen; Le Baiser by Rodin.]

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