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Heh of Creation

16.5" X 16.6"

Giclé Print

This piece is an artistic exploration of the 4th verse of the second chapter of Genesis, "These are the generations of the heavens and the land on the day that they were created, on the day that The Lord, God made land and heaven."


אֵלֶּה תוֹלְדוֹת הַשָּׁמַיִם וְהָאָרֶץ בְּהִבָּרְאָם בְּיוֹם עֲשׂוֹת יְהוָה אֱלֹהִים אֶרֶץ וְשָׁמָיִם. 


There are 3 things that stand out in this verse where the sages of the Talmud and Midrash developed some mystical insights. The number one significant part of this verse is that it is the very first time in the Torah where the Tetragrammaton, the 4-lettered Divine Name, (Shem Havaya), appears. One might think that the most revered Divine name would be the prominent name used when bring everyhing into being withing the 6 days of creation, rather, this name make its first appearance in the 35th verse. The appearance, therefore, in this verse must be important.


The second puzzling thing is that in Genesis 1:1, the Torah states, "בְּרֵאשִׁית בָּרָא אֱלֹהִים אֵת הַשָּׁמַיִם וְאֵת הָאָרֶץ", "When God began to create heaven and earth," the heavens preceded the land in creation, whereas, here, the land precedes the heavens.


The third thing is that in the Torah scroll, a very small Hebrew letter, "Heh" is written in the word בְּהִבָּרְאָם "were created". This strange variance, a scribal secret of sorts is one that earns interpretation. Furthermore, here the verb "create" is in its passive form which adds to the perplexity.


After a few generations of debate between the schools of Shamai and Hillel as to what was the order of creation, it was established that God created the material world utilizing the letter "Heh" as His tool. The word "were created" in Hebrew would not be read as "bhebara'am", but rather, "b' "heh" bar'am", meaning, that using the letter "Heh" as a tool did God create the earth and the heavens, or the spiritual word, God used the letter "Yud" as His tool.

Heh of Creation

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