About this blog

This Blog is named after an ancient gnoseological riddle which hints hidden, disseminated, omnipresent wisdom.
I invite you to search, listen and observe with me for "the word of tree, whisper of stone, and humming together of the abyss and stars."


A Bathtub Monster

A mother Humpback with a calf just off the coast of Massachusetts.
As a baby, I am told, it was awfully difficult to give me an evening bath. Clearly, I have always had more fire than water personality. But then my parents, like many other parents in such situations, came up with a little trick in a form of a bathtub tugboat. I still see it in front of my inner sight. And once I was in with my tugboat I did not want to get out until water was getting cold and my fingertips all wrinkled. Many of you, personally or through your children, can relate to this experience and interestingly, this is one of the ways in which the Bible in Psalm 104 describes the creation of oceans.
           Here is the ocean, vast and wide,
           teeming with life of every kind,
           both large and small.
           Ships sail along it,
           you (meant God) even made Leviathan,
           with whom you can play!

    This is at least one of the possible translations; either Leviathan was created to play in the ocean which is a standard translation, or, as ancient rabbis sometime suggested, Leviathan was created so that God could play with it in the ocean (Hebrew grammar allows both interpretations). Whichever way, Leviathan, originally a vicious primordial monster, is completely re-branded and demythologized. At the same time the sea or the ocean, that dangerous realm of watery chaos, is turned into a timid pool or even a divine bathtub.
    This psalm helped to release people from the earlier petrifying superstitious fear, and opened them to curiosity, wonder and beauty of marine biology. Unfortunately, it did not stop there; released from their irrational fear, people were quick to start abusing ocean creatures and especially whales, the largest world creatures, to the point that they were almost extinct. This Sunday, reading another biblical Psalm with a similar oceanic theme, we will attempt to find a new balance between playfulness and awe, understanding and reverence.

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