Chapter 1 (Bereshit), verse 1-8.
With Gil Dekel.
Gil: We’re going to look at Tanakh (Tanach). What is Tanakh?
Yael: The Holy Text.
Gil: Torah Navi’im K’Ttuvim: Taf, Nun, Khaf. Together we call it Tanach תנך.
Chapter Bereshit; what does Bereshit mean?
Yael: In the beginning.
“Bereshit bara Elohim ‘et hashamayim v’et ha’aretz.” בְּרֵאשִׁ֖ית בָּרָ֣א אֱלֹהִ֑ים אֵ֥ת הַשָּׁמַ֖יִם וְאֵ֥ת הָאָֽרֶץ
In the beginning, God created the sky and the earth. In the beginning, Bereshit… do you know what’s the first letter in the word Bereshit?
The first letter in Hebrew is Aleph א , but the first letter of the word Bereshit is Bet ב, which is the second letter in the Hebrew alphabet. What does all this mean?
Yael: The beginning.
Gil: Yes. However, this is not the first beginning of the story, because the first letter I the Bible is the second letter in Hebrew ב. Not the first letter ne but the second one, Bet: Bereshit. So, we’re referring to a new world that was created. This world that God created (in the story of Bereshit) is actually a second world God has created.
There was a world and a civilization before. It didn’t work well; something wrong happened, so God created a new world, the one mentioned here in the Bible.
Although we say “in the beginning,” this is referring to our beginning, to ‘our’ second world’s beginning. And we know it because of the letter Bet.
Also, if you look carefully at the letter Bet, you will see how it’s closed with a vertical line on the right, and the shape is open on the left? So, it is closed from the previous world – in Hebrew, we read from right to left. There was a world and it stopped then, symbolizes with the vertical line of the letter.
There is an opening to the new world, the new start, in the letter Bet ב.
So, the story starts with the second letter – not the first letter. Also, the letter’s shape is closed to the previous world. That tells us that it’s actually a second world.
In Hebrew, the shape of the letter has meaning. In Kabbala, you can learn about the meanings of the shapes of the letters. That is interesting to graphic designer, as typography is very interesting.
So, Bereshit, that is the first thing in the story. In English, “in the beginning.” God created the skies – it says skies שמים, not heaven – the skies and the earth. So what was the first creation?
Yael: The skies?
Gil: No. what does the first word say?
Yael: “In the beginning.”
Gil: Exactly. So what was the first creation?
Yael: Beginning? Time…
Gil: Correct. That’s right, time.
Bereshit, in the beginning, that is the first thing God created. God created the beginning, i.e. time. And time is the concept that the human brain can understand. The human brain understands only concepts of time and space. There is nothing that you can think of which is beyond time and space. Even emotion or memory are bound in a certain time.
Yael: What about slow motion?
Gil: Slow motion is also time. It’s slow time.
Yael: When they play slow motion in videos and speeds it up…
Gil: That is changing time, manipulating of time, but it is still time.
Yael: What about staying completely still?
Gil: Staying completely still is also time because you keep observing it. There’s no movement but there is observation and observation takes time. Also, even if you stay still, your heart still beats up. That is movement, which is in time.
In the Energy Book we talk about the concept of time and space through light, through energy, through chakras. For example, in a drawing of angel Raphael (page 26), drawn by Natalie, the angel looks down from above. He is standing above time looking down into the physical time.
“Bereshit bara Elohim ‘et hashamayim v’et ha’aretz.” In the beginning, God created the skies and the earth. So, the first creation was time, the beginning.
Now, in Hebrew, there is masculine and feminine forms. “Elohim”, the name of God…
Yael: There’s something else, Hashem.
Gil: That’s right. We have many names for God because we do not pronounce His/Her most sacred name.
Yael: Do we know it?
Gil: Yes, it is written here. It’s written in our Tanach. You can think of it; you cannot say it, out of respect.
Yael: How did they know God’s name?
Gil: How do we know God’s name? It’s all written in the Tanach, if you believe in the text then you know it.
Yael: But how did they know?
Gil: Who is ‘they’?
Yael: The person, the people who wrote it?
Gil: We believe that God gave Moses the text. It’s a story. If you believe in the story then it is true to you. We don’t have evidence.
So, God… we don’t say His sacred name, but rather here we say Elohim. Elohim is a plural form.
Yael: What is ‘Elohenu’?
Gil: Elohenu means: our one God. Elohim, the letters i-m at the end makes it plural in Hebrew. It is like plural ‘s’ in English. So, we refer to God in the plural form.
We have many names for God. We don’t say the sacred name. We say Hashem, Elohim and so forth. Here, Elohim refers to the plural of God. This is out of respect to God, to the creator. We do not believe in many Gods, but in one.
Now, if you look closely, you can see all the little symbols – punctuations – in the Hebrew text, just below the text’s letters, which tells you how to pronounce, and where sentences end.
Yael: Yeah, like segol.
Gil: Yes, like segol, kamatz…
Gil: Tzere and so forth.
So, to summarize: God created time, then God created the skies, then God created the earth. And we refer to God in the plural form out of respect. We say that Bereshit starts with letter Bet, it’s the second letter in the Hebrew alphabet, because this is the second world.
Yael: Do they talk about the first world at all?
Gil: We don’t talk about the first world here in the Tanakh, but in Kabbalah we do. I think the name of Khavah (Eve) in the first world was Lilit לילית.
Then the text reads, “Veha’arets hayetah tohu vavohu” וְהָאָ֗רֶץ הָֽיְתָ֥ה תֹ֨הוּ֙ וָבֹ֔הוּ
And the earth was chaos. In Hebrew, the word chaos is “tohu vavohu.” The land was “tohu vavohu”; in total chaos. It sounds like the yin and the yang…
Yael: It seems pretty balanced.
Gil: Exactly. It is balanced, it’s just not suited for our physical life since it is chaos, but it’s not bad. Also, it’s two words: “tohu, vavohu,” like the yin and the yang.
In English, we say chaos. In Hebrew, we say “tohu vavohu,” which means unorganized. It is not chaos in a negative way. It is simply different formation of space and materiality which does not fit human beings. But there is balance. There is meaning, there is a reason for that.
So, continuing, the text reads, “vechoshech al-peney tehom” וְח֖שֶׁךְ עַל־פְּנֵ֣י תְה֑וֹם , which means “and darkness was on the the abyss.” Like smoke on water. I think that the Black Sabbath’s song ‘Smoke on Water’…
Yael: It was Deep Purple.
Gil: Smoke on Water is by Deep Purple?
Gil: I’m sure the song references the concept here in the Bible, because at that time, heavy metal bands were using a lot of biblical symbolism from the scriptures, just because it was the thing to do in the seventies.
So, “vechoshech al-peney tehom.” There’s something interesting when we say “and darkness was on the abyss.” What does it mean, darkness?
Yael: Like, shadows but not… like the night sky.
Gil: Night sky shadows. But what do you require for shadow to happen?
Yael: You need to have light.
Gil: Exactly. You need to have light in order for darkness to exist. Or, in the opposite way, you need to have darkness so that light can permeate it and flow in it.
When you think about quantum physics and the theory of relativity, we talk about the speed of light and how it is relative. But how can light have speed? How can light exist? It has to exist within darkness. This darkness, if you believe the story, this is the darkness that God created. It is a potential darkness.
Yael: Do you mean like moral darkness or literal darkness?
Gil: I wouldn’t use the word “moral” because moral is about good and bad. I would use the word potential.
Yael: What do you mean potential? Not negative?
Gil: Not negative but as an abstract idea in God’s mind.
Yael: So, purely like light.
Gil: We think that there was pure light. I think that there’s pure light space even right now but we don’t see it. It is so bright that we see it as darkness. There is so much light, it blinds our eyes. And this is the light which is presented here as darkness, again, the yin and yang, the light which is also a darkness.
You can argue that when you turn on the light in your room, when you switch the light on, that it also permeates darkness…
Yael: Or shadow.
Gil: Shadow, because light can only operate with the shadow, together.
So, there was chaos and that is the chaos that God was talking about. It’s not chaos in a negative way, it is a chaos of unity, of one thing.
If you look at the Energy Book at this painting (page 11), which shows the formation of a baby from a mother. That is about the yin and yang. The baby is part of the mother. You can say that the mother is being born, or being formed, out of the baby. It’s almost a “tohu vavohu”, a yin and the yang.
So, let’s repeat the second sentence. “Veha’arets hayetah tohu vavohu.” And the land was in chaos, not in a bad way. And darkness was on the face of the abyss. And it continues, “veruach Elohim merachefet al-pney hamayim.” וְר֣וּחַ אֱלֹהִ֔ים מְרַחֶ֖פֶת עַל־פְּנֵ֥י הַמָּֽיִם ; Ruach, “the essence of God” was hovering on the face of the water.
God is referred here in a masculine plural form. In Hebrew, there is no gender-neutral form for “it”, rather you have to use a male of female form. Even the word “it” is either masculine or feminine. Ze זה – masculine ‘it’. Zo זו – female ‘it’.
In Judaism, we consider God both as a male and as a female. Simply at the time it was written, it was the convention to write using masculine form. Something else – the masculine form of words in Hebrew is much shorter than the feminine form when you speak it out. This is why in advertisements in Israel until recently, they uses masculine forms a lot.
Yael: Why, because they can say more?
Gil: Yes, you can say more and its quicker. These days, they’re using feminine form as well, but when I grew up in Israel, it was mostly masculine form in advertisements because it is quicker and snappier. You can say more in 30 seconds. So, this is not about men vs. women; it is simply about how much it costs you to produce and how many words you can say in a half-minute advertisement.
Here, we say, “And the spirit of God was hovering on the water of the abyss.” Now, hovering, “merachefet” is a feminine word because the word ‘spirit’, the ‘wind’ is a feminine word.
Yael: So, God wasn’t in the water?
Gil: God was not in the water; rather it was His spirit.
Here, there is the first reference to God as a female. The spirit of God is the female aspect of God. And we say, “the spirit of God was hovering over the water.”
So we know that God created water by now. God created time, the skies, the earth; the earth was still in chaos. God separated it and created the darkness which was hovering, and the spirit of God was then hovering over the water, so God also created water.
Now, in the Bible, every new sentence starts with the word “and”. It goes like this, “God created the world, and the land was… and God’s spirit was hovering, and God said…
Yael: It didn’t stop, right?
Gil: Because it didn’t stop. And also in the Tanach, there’s no much past tense. In the Hebrew text there is no much past form. It is not that God created in the past.
Yael: We say, “In the beginning, God created.”
Yael: So, in the past.
Gil: That’s right. The beginning was the first creation, which is in the so-called past because that is the creation of time itself. And from there on the story goes with “and.” And the land was… and the spirit of God was hovering, and God said, “Let there be light,” and God saw… But in Hebrew the form is in future tense.
I’ll take you to the third sentence. It says, “And God said…” but in Hebrew, it is written Vayomer Elohim.” Vayomer is a form of past which is also future.
Let’s see how the English translation text goes. “And God said…” In English, it’s all in the past. “And God called…” But in Hebrew, “vayomer,” the past is “amar”.
Yael: Hashem Amar…
Gil: Hashem “Amar,” that translates to past tense, “God has said.” But when you say “vayomer,” it’s a very specific form of Hebrew which is future tense only, although it happened in the past.
Yael: It’s confusing.
Gil: It’s confusing because we don’t have that form in English language. In English, we say “and God said.” ‘Said’ is past tense of ‘say’. The past tense of say in Hebrew is “amar”, whereas here, we say “vayomer.” It’s a very unique form of present and always going in the future. There’s no past tense in the Bible.
Yael: They just said “in the beginning.”
Gil: Yes, a part of the first sentence is in the past tense. Where it says “Bereshit bara.” In the beginning, God created. If we want it in the future tense, we would not say “bara,” we would say “vayevra,” ‘and He will be creating’. But it says “bara” which means ‘created’ (past tense).
So, let’s go through the sentences.
Yael: But you said that God is in everything. Like, in nature and everything.
Yael: But the text is saying that God is not part of the water, because it is the spirit that is in the water.
Gil: That’s right. That is not what is meant here. God is part of His own creation as well.
Yael: Then why does it say there ‘hovering over’?
Gil: Because we have no other way to describe the atomic essence that created water, but simply saying there is essence of God that created it. In truth, it is already God. Everything has the spirit of God within it, otherwise it would not survive.
But we’re using words. Words are the worst tool of communications.
Yael: Is that an Oscar Wilde quote?
Yael: Sounds like one.
Gil: No, it is Neale Donald Walsch quote. He said that words are not the best way to describe —
Yael: Because they are limited.
Gil: Exactly. There are no words to describe most things. I mean, people like you, a writer, could invent new words to describe things. We talked about the Chakras in the Energy Book. Let’s just read from the book:
“You will find that you may withdraw to give you the space to digest and assimilate what is happening.” We’re talking here about becoming aware of your spiritual energy; you need to digest it. But you don’t really digest energy. We have to use that word, “digest” and “assimilate”. We use words that are available to us…
Okay, so those were three sentences we covered so far from the Tanakh…
Yael: Let me see if I remember it. In the beginning…
Gil: Yeah, Bereshit…
Yael: There was time… no…
Gil: Time is the beginning, yeah.
Yael: In the beginning, God created the sky and the earth. God’s spirit…
Gil: Veha’arets hayetah tohu vavohu…
Yael: God’s spirit gloated across the sea… hovered across the sea…
Gil: The spirit of God hovered across the water, not the sea. We don’t know if it was a sea or ocean. We know it was water. Water can be the dew on a plant. So, it says that the spirit of God was on the water.
Then we go into the known section that everybody knows. The third sentence, again it starts with “and.” “Vayomer” and God said.
Gil: It is not “and God called.” Vayomer, the past is ‘amar’ – that is the past tense of “to say.” Here, we say ‘vayomer’ – ‘and he is embarked on saying…’
Vayomer Elohim yehi-or vayehi-or. וַיֹּ֥אמֶר אֱלֹהִ֖ים יְהִי־א֑וֹר וַֽיְהִי־אֽוֹר God said, or God is saying, let there be light.
Yael: Would that be humans or something?
Gil: No, God said, “Let there be light” and indeed, there was light.
Yael: There was darkness in the water?
Yael: There must have been light then.
Gil: That’s right.
Yael: So why creating the light?
Gil: Because there are a few things we need to learn here. First, there was light before because darkness can only work within light, in our world. Now, as God said, “yehi-or,” that’s when God separated light from darkness. Vayomer Elohim yehi-or vayehi-or. God said, “Let there be light.” And indeed, there was light. Light came out, but still was part of darkness.
And you can see that the way the Bible is written is very concise. They will not put stuff which is not relevant.
Gil: Yes, and therefore, the sentences are very short. “Vayomer Elohim,” God said let there be light, ” yehi-or”… “vayehi-or.” And indeed, three was light.
Yael: Do we need to say that there was light?
Gil: Yes, we need to.
Yael: Why? If the text is concise, we can just cut that out.
Gil: No, because we need to explain what happens from what God does. Now, let’s see how God’s creation was executed here. So, God said ‘let there be light’ and there was light, okay?
Before we talk about the light, let’s talk about the creation. Again we said that God was to say Vayomer Elohim yehi-or vayehi-or. God said let there be light and there was light. What is the tool by which God created here?
Gil: Exactly. Words – ‘God said’. Through words, God created our planet. And at this point, when God said “yehi-or” – and again, this is future tense, “let there be,” God has brought out the light from darkness. This is the first time that the text mentions that God created something by talking, by His work by calling out forth.
Yael: Is that like AC/DC song ‘Let there be Rock’?
Gil: Yes, AC/DC song ‘Let there be Rock’ is a reference to this, let there be light. Well, AC/DC is a rock band. They wanted to convey this concept of creation, of something important.
The first creation of heaven and earth, Bereshit bara Elohim. We know it’s the second world. We know God created heaven and earth. Here, it says “sky,” probably it refers to heaven and earth.
Yael: Or they meant the true sky.
Gil: Could be, yes. In English we use the word heaven, in Hebrew we use the word “Shamayim”
Gil: Yes. We also talk about God residing in the sky, so we probably refer to heaven also in Hebrew, with the word ‘sky’.
So, there was chaos which was not bad, yin and yang; and there was darkness. The spirit of God, which is the feminine aspect of God was hovering over water. And at that point, God created by saying – God said ‘let there be light’. At that point (if you can say that there is a point in time… if you can say that time exists…)
Yael: Did time not exist for that?
Gil: In truth, time does not exist at all. Time is just a concept —
Yael: Yeah, but if it is completely… I can’t…
Gil: In order to feel what is life without time, you should do Reiki meditation and then you will notice how everything works together. We talk about it in the Energy Book as it teaches you all the energies that operate with you and through this, you can learn how to meditate. We have a lot of meditation exercise links in the book.
And after a lot of meditation, you can literally sense reality without time.
Yael: What’s it feel like?
Gil: It feels like everything is together. You can sense the atoms all around you which are part of you. Because what does time do? Time separates reality. So in truth, there are many more here, right? My past, my present, my future, so to speak. But your brain separates them for me in the past, me in the present, and me in the future. And that’s how the brain creates time. It’s just a concept. There’s a lot of everything, all here at this single point of life.
No-time is not the same as the concept ‘eternity’. Eternity is a concept that describes a never stopping time, i.e. time goes on and on without an end. When there is no-time, there’s no eternity. When there’s no-time, the feeling is that everything is one, united. Like a big cauldron where everything is a one soup.
Yael: I think I kind of get it. There are a few worlds.
Yael: Do they overlap?
Gil: I think they are side by side. It is not one after the other.
Yael: That’s the same thing.
Gil: No, side by side… It is the past that is present besides the present besides the future. So, we see something as a past, and something else as a present, but in truth, they are all together, side by side. And you can look at all from that overarching angle, right?
Yael: Okay, I get it.
Gil: Then, when you feel the Moment of Now – you can read Eckhart Tolle ‘The moment of Now’; you then feel the presence of all atoms around you; and you realise that it is all happening right now. But you have to feel it; you cannot study it, you cannot just read it from a book.
Yael: So, you believe that words have power?
Gil: Yes, according to Judaism words are exceptionally powerful. Words are tools of creation; and people received this tool from God.
Fourth phrase in the text, “Vayra Elohim” וַיַּ֧רְא אֱלֹהִ֛ים “Vayra” is future tense of seeing – God is seeing, God is looking. In English we say…
Yael: God has looked?
Gil: Yes, and God saw. “Vayar Elohim et-ha’or ki-tov” וַיַּ֧רְא אֱלֹהִ֛ים אֶת־הָא֖וֹר כִּי־ט֑וֹב and God noticed, saw, that the light is good, “ki-tov.”
And then God separated the light from the darkness. So, the previous sentence and this sentence go together. God created the light, which means allowing the light forward, and then God observed it. And again, we said he noticed that it was good. And God saw the light, that it is good. What does it mean?
Yael: Like morality?
Gil: Probably morality, yes. Here, we say that God saw.
Yael: That means there’s a realization that God didn’t know before.
Gil: It’s a physical manifestation and acknowledgement.
Yael: Isn’t that saying that God isn’t all-powerful?
Gil: God is all-powerful.
Yael: It says He didn’t know stuff.
Gil: God knows everything; God is the actual creation. God knows and realizes everything at all times.
Yael: But, She only now learned that the light is good?
Gil: She didn’t just learn it. It says “vayar,” noticed, saw.
Yael: That means something you didn’t notice before.
Gil: No, it means looked, as in look and notice. When the light has become physical manifestation, pure for the human eyes.
Yael: Why is that good? You can get blind from the sun.
Gil: You can get blind from the sun, yet this light was good. So now, God has noticed it on a physical level, if you like, and was able to see it. Of course, He was able to see before but we’re talking here from a human perspective, we’re using words here. “Vayar Elohim,” God saw and God noticed. In English we just say God saw the light. God saw/noticed the so-called physical aspect of the light and he said that this is good. It’s good light for mankind and animals and —
Yael: Why? Like growth and stuff?
Gil: Yes, good for growth, plants, for people, for animals.
Yael: Does the text says specifically this light is good for mankind?
Gil: No, yet it says God saw the light which is good. And good means for the planet and for growth and for human beings – because that’s the Tanach, it’s the book of the creation of the world, for Mother Nature and for human beings, so it refers to us.
So now, it says that God separated the light from the darkness, here in the fourth phrase.
Yael: So he didn’t separate them before – or he did?
Gil: He did separate light from darkness on a spiritual level. So light and darkness was one thing, if you like, united. God separated them and now, God pushed them farther down be good – for plants, earth, for the animals and for human beings’ existence.
Yael: I thought like, God did it all in one second.
Gil: Yes, He did it all in one second.
Yael: Okay, it’s just splitting up.
Gil: Splitting it all up. In truth, God is making it all the time. Every moment you blink, the planet disappears. When you open your eyes, the planet re-appears. It is called “atomism”, this philosophy. It comes from Judaism and Islam. They believe that God is creating pulsating life. Every single moment there’s life created in the earth and life is shrinking. The shrinking, the so-called death is not a negative thing, rather it is simply a rebirth in the other direction (so-called death). But here in the text, we are using words. This is a book. And with words you cannot say everything.
So now, on a physical level, God separated the light from the darkness. And this separation creates day and night as we perceive it.
So we said “Vayar Elohim et-ha’or” וַיַּ֧רְא אֱלֹהִ֛ים אֶת־הָא֖וֹר . In Hebrew, it says “Vayar et-ha’or,” it’s the present and future tense combined… We can translate it as “and there shall be,” That’s a good translation into English…
So, we’re going to sentence five. “Vayikra Elohim” וַיִּקְרָ֨א אֱלֹהִ֤ים and God called, named. God named the light by the name of ‘day’ “Vayikra Elohim la-or yom” וַיִּקְרָ֨א אֱלֹהִ֤ים לָאוֹר֙ י֔וֹם
Yael: Didn’t humans name the daylight?
Gil: Here it says that God gave that name. “Yom,” which means day, is what God called the light.
Yael: Do you believe that?
Gil: Why not? “Vayikra Elohim la-or yom…” וַיִּקְרָ֨א אֱלֹהִ֤ים | לָאוֹר֙ י֔וֹם
Yael: It seems like the humans made up the name for daylight.
Gil: Yeah, of course. The Bible was written by human beings. Some people think it was written directly by God. It doesn’t matter at this point as we look at the philosophy of the story.
Yael: I think it was perhaps written by humans because the words, it’s not literally what happened, it’s just trying to put it down in words.
Gil: That’s right. It’s the essence of God’s inspiration translated into human words in this book.
And God called the light “a day” and darkness he called night, “Laylah”לָ֑יְלָה Here it says “vayikra” which means God named. Again, this is in a future tense. We don’t say “kara.” “Kata” is the past.
And here, it’s interesting. “velachoshech kara Laylah” וְלַח֖שֶׁךְ קָ֣רָא לָ֑יְלָה and for darkness, “kara,” in the past, named. So it’s not “vayikra.”
Yael: So it’s past tense?
Gil: Yes. So the name “Laylah” was conceived in the past tense, “kara”,
Now we did say beforehand on the second phrase that darkness already exists. And here we say the darkness, God named it in a past tense. So this probably refers to the fact that the so-called darkness was before.
Yael: What, like in a past universe?
Gil: Yes, past universe. So it’s interesting. Why did God “vayikra yom” (future) vs. “kara laylah”? (past tense). The light was having the future tense and darkness having the past tense. I don’t know exactly. I think that’s because we talked before about the darkness existing, before God separated light from darkness
So, now we say God called the light a day, and the darkness he called “Laylah,” night.
Yael: Why didn’t he call the light “boker”בוקר – morning?
Gil: Because there was no morning yet. Morning was not created yet. It will be created soon.
Yael: But day and light were created.
Gil: No. As we continue to the fifth sentence we say, וַֽיְהִי־עֶ֥רֶב וַֽיְהִי־בֹ֖קֶר י֥וֹם אֶחָֽד: “and there has become an evening and there has become a morning, Yom echad,” day one now created.
So, only now, day and night created. With them evening was created, and then morning. There was no evening beforehand. No morning as yet. So, He wouldn’t name it morning because there was no morning.
Yael: But there still is space (universe) because there’s the sun and the planets orbiting. So is it saying that God created earth before the other planets?
Gil: No. We do not know of other worlds as yet. We’re talking about the creation of earth only here.
Yael: I know but still, did He create the universe first or earth?
Gil: The universe.
Yael: So then, there must be the other planets.
Gil: There must be, yet it is not described here in the text.
Yael: I know but still, if there are other planets it means that there’s a sun, which means that the earth is orbiting the sun.
Gil: I don’t know if the earth orbited the sun back then in those times. That’s what we know happening now in our times. What people forget is that there is evolution, right? Things evolve.
Yael: You don’t believe in evolution.
Gil: I believe that things evolve. So, humans evolved and also plants evolved. What about the laws that govern nature, do the laws evolve or not? People think that if there is this thing, heat, then the same property (heat) was the same millions of years ago. Maybe heat in the past was cold…?
Yael: I mean living things.
Gil: What I’m saying, the rules that govern nature may have changed themselves. What we consider as warm, heat, may have been cold that transformed and evolved into heat.
If you want to know more about the evolution of the rules that govern nature, read Rupert Sheldrake.
Yael: But religious people don’t believe in evolution.
Gil: Religious people would not believe in evolution, they would believe in what it says here. They believe in science but not the formation of man or woman from monkeys.
So only now, after God gave a name, day, only now, evening was created or manifested. It says ‘and there was evening and there was morning’, “yom echad”, one day. That’s why in Judaism, the day starts in the evening. There was an evening before morning, on the day one. So, day in Judaism starts I the evening.
God created evening and only then God created morning. So, the first day started with an evening all the way to the night and then to the morning.
Yael: So, Jews are nocturnal?…
Gil: No, we’re not necessarily nocturnal but we believe that the day starts in the evening. When we say Saturday, it starts on Friday night. That’s why on Friday night, we celebrate Shabbat because that’s when Shabbat starts.
That’s why the end of Saturday, which is let’s say, Saturday 8 o’clock in the evening is considered a Sunday. That’s why in Israel, shops can open up on a Saturday’s evening as it is start of the Sunday. Today, shops are also open on Saturday, but if you’re religious and you don’t open your shop on Saturdays, you’re allowed to open it when the Shabbat leaves, around 7 or 8 o’clock in the evening because that’s considered the next day, Sunday. And you would close your shop on Friday evening because that is when Saturday begins.
And now we know why is that so… because it says here the that the first day was evening and then there was the morning.
So, the text said before, in sentence 2, that there was darkness on the abyss ח֖שֶׁךְ עַל־פְּנֵ֣י תְה֑וֹם . The darkness is the power that holds the light. Although we can agree that it is like a yin and the yang, it is not yin yang that are separate, rather the yin yang that are bound together. That is what we call chaos. In Hebrew we call it “Tohu Vavohu.”
Now we go to the sixth verse. “Vayomer Elohim…” what is “vayomer Elohim”?
Yael: Say, said, saying.
Gil: Yes. And God is to say, and God shall be saying. “Vayomer Elohim yehi rakia” יֹּ֣אמֶר אֱלֹהִ֔ים יְהִ֥י רָקִ֖יעַ let there be sky,
Yael: But I thought there was already a sky.
Gil: The first verse was “Bereshit bara Elohim et hashamayim.” Shamayim is skies in plural. And here in the sixth verse, we call it “Rakia.” Rakia is a second word for sky. So now, God created “rakia,”
Yael: So in the first instance, were they saying “heaven’?
Gil: It’s either heaven, if you believe, or it is the essence of skies. The creation was going in gradation from the so-called spiritual to the more and more physical, so to speak, until the earth is the most physical manifestation. We have the spiritual and the physical. It’s not necessarily up or down in quality. You can say life is down (physical) that is going up.
God was creating the skies – the essence of sky. And in the sixth phrase it says “rakia.” Rakia is our physical sky as we can see it, the so-called blue sky.
God created it by saying “Let there be skies inside the water” יְהִ֥י רָקִ֖יעַ בְּת֣וֹךְ הַמָּ֑יִם
Yael: Inside the water?
Gil: Yes. Well, we don’t talk about water as in sea or oceans. It was still in chaos, it was still being formed. There is also droplets of water in the air, the skies. But now, God created “rakia” so God is separating the water from the sky. Or creating sky from water.
Yael: So God created the sky first?
Gil: Skies, in plural, yes. הַשָּׁמַ֖יִם
Yael: And then when it says it again here, it means they were separating it.
Gil: That’s right. And now, we call it “rakia.” The word “Rakia” means in Hebrew that which is up high, as in sky going upwards. So He was probably also starting to create the physical up and down.
“Vayomer Elohim yehi rakia betoch ha-mayim,” Let there be a sky (Rakia) inside the water. “And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the water.” Firmament, that’s the word in English. Firmament, dividing the waters to down and up (sky). Let there be a sky in the water.
“vyhi mavdil bein mayim le-mayim” וִיהִ֣י מַבְדִּ֔יל בֵּ֥ין מַ֖יִם לָמָֽיִם and it shall separate between water and water. So God is now separating the water that makes the sky and the other water. We don’t know what’s the other water is.
Gil: It doesn’t say that God created the oceans yet. And God created the sky and He separated between waters that are below and the water above, the sky. “Maim”, waters that are below under the sky and those waters that are above the sky. So we’re not talking about the oceans as yet.
Maybe this is the atmosphere.
Then it says ‘and it was so’ “vayehi-chen” וַֽיְהִי־כֵֽן
Sentence number eight. “Vayikra Elohim la-rakia shamayim,” and God called the sky “sky” and there was evening and there was morning, day two.
Yael: So they’re saying there is time because there’s different days?
Gil: Yes. God created time already. That’s the first creation, Bereshit. But we don’t know what kind of time it was. It was maybe time which was condensed into a single point. We don’t know, maybe created the vessel that brought time. What we think is that creation was going down in gradation. You can call it evolution…
Now, day one doesn’t mean 24 hours. Day two doesn’t mean 24 hours either. In our concept, one of our ‘day’ could be 7,000 years in biblical terms. But here, we say ‘day one’ and ‘day two’, as God created the skies and separated those above…
Yael: So it fits with science, kind of.
Gil: Yes, that fits with science.
So, we’ve read the eight sentences from Bereshit from the Tanach today.
© Gil Dekel.
Uploaded 30 Oct 2022.