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Shir HaShirim and Metaphors for God 

Source Sheet by Naomi Zaslow
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Created March 4, 2018 · 590 Views · נוצר 4 March, 2018 · 590 צפיות ·

This sourcesheet is for an arts based Hillel lesson:

1. Start out by asking what color(s) God might represents. Pass out watercolor or other art supplies. You can also talk about color theory, and the way colors hold different emotions or possibilities.

2. Explain that ShS is traditionally read on Passover, and can be read both allegorically and literally. This shuir takes it in an allegorical direction.

3. Work through the sources with students or give them hevruta time to explore them on their own. What do the sources say about relationships? About sexuality and desire? How can we read that into God? --- NOTE: ShS is hyper hetro-normative. make sure to address that.

4. Go back to the art supplies. How has ShS changed or altered your image of God? What new emotions or colors do you want to bring in? Students can either make a second painting or work on top of their first painting. If there's time, give students a chance to share what they made and why.

  1. (ג) אֲנִ֤י לְדוֹדִי֙ וְדוֹדִ֣י לִ֔י הָרֹעֶ֖ה בַּשׁוֹשַׁנִּֽים׃ (ס)
    (3) I am my beloved’s And my beloved is mine; He browses among the lilies.
  2. "... Every relationship has a commanding quality to it. Every relationship compels the participants to behave in a way that is appropriate to the relationship. God's love for Israel is all that is needed to inspire Israel to live a certain way. Contra the traditionalists, then, what was revealed was not the specific commandments but the fact of being commanded. But, contra Kaplan, God is very much the authority -  however implicit - for the commandments, just as a lover's expressions of affection are governed by the presence and implicit wishes of the beloved." (p.24, Sacred Fragments, Neil Gillman. 1990)

  3. (א) שִׁ֥יר הַשִּׁירִ֖ים אֲשֶׁ֥ר לִשְׁלֹמֹֽה׃ (ב) יִשָּׁקֵ֙נִי֙ מִנְּשִׁיק֣וֹת פִּ֔יהוּ כִּֽי־טוֹבִ֥ים דֹּדֶ֖יךָ מִיָּֽיִן׃
    (1) The Song of Songs, by Solomon. (2) Oh, give me of the kisses of your mouth, For your love is more delightful than wine.
  4. (ט) לְסֻסָתִי֙ בְּרִכְבֵ֣י פַרְעֹ֔ה דִּמִּיתִ֖יךְ רַעְיָתִֽי׃ (י) נָאו֤וּ לְחָיַ֙יִךְ֙ בַּתֹּרִ֔ים צַוָּארֵ֖ךְ בַּחֲרוּזִֽים׃ (יא) תּוֹרֵ֤י זָהָב֙ נַעֲשֶׂה־לָּ֔ךְ עִ֖ם נְקֻדּ֥וֹת הַכָּֽסֶף׃ (יב) עַד־שֶׁ֤הַמֶּ֙לֶךְ֙ בִּמְסִבּ֔וֹ נִרְדִּ֖י נָתַ֥ן רֵיחֽוֹ׃ (יג) צְר֨וֹר הַמֹּ֤ר ׀ דּוֹדִי֙ לִ֔י בֵּ֥ין שָׁדַ֖י יָלִֽין׃
    (9) I have likened you, my darling, To a mare in Pharaoh’s chariots: (10) Your cheeks are comely with plaited wreaths, Your neck with strings of jewels. (11) We will add wreaths of gold To your spangles of silver. (12) While the king was on his couch, My nard gave forth its fragrance. (13) My beloved to me is a bag of myrrh Lodged between my breasts.
  5. (יד) יוֹנָתִ֞י בְּחַגְוֵ֣י הַסֶּ֗לַע בְּסֵ֙תֶר֙ הַמַּדְרֵגָ֔ה הַרְאִ֙ינִי֙ אֶתּ־מַרְאַ֔יִךְ הַשְׁמִיעִ֖ינִי אֶת־קוֹלֵ֑ךְ כִּי־קוֹלֵ֥ךְ עָרֵ֖ב וּמַרְאֵ֥יךְ נָאוֶֽה׃ (ס) (טו) אֶֽחֱזוּ־לָ֙נוּ֙ שֽׁוּעָלִ֔ים שֽׁוּעָלִ֥ים קְטַנִּ֖ים מְחַבְּלִ֣ים כְּרָמִ֑ים וּכְרָמֵ֖ינוּ סְמָדַֽר׃ 

    (14) “O my dove, in the cranny of the rocks, Hidden by the cliff, Let me see your face, Let me hear your voice; For your voice is sweet And your face is comely.” (15) Catch us the foxes, The little foxes That ruin the vineyards— For our vineyard is in blossom. 

  6. (א) עַל־מִשְׁכָּבִי֙ בַּלֵּיל֔וֹת בִּקַּ֕שְׁתִּי אֵ֥ת שֶׁאָהֲבָ֖ה נַפְשִׁ֑י בִּקַּשְׁתִּ֖יו וְלֹ֥א מְצָאתִֽיו׃ (ב) אָק֨וּמָה נָּ֜א וַאֲסוֹבְבָ֣ה בָעִ֗יר בַּשְּׁוָקִים֙ וּבָ֣רְחֹב֔וֹת אֲבַקְשָׁ֕ה אֵ֥ת שֶׁאָהֲבָ֖ה נַפְשִׁ֑י בִּקַּשְׁתִּ֖יו וְלֹ֥א מְצָאתִֽיו׃ (ג) מְצָא֙וּנִי֙ הַשֹּׁ֣מְרִ֔ים הַסֹּבְבִ֖ים בָּעִ֑יר אֵ֛ת שֶׁאָהֲבָ֥ה נַפְשִׁ֖י רְאִיתֶֽם׃ (ד) כִּמְעַט֙ שֶׁעָבַ֣רְתִּי מֵהֶ֔ם עַ֣ד שֶֽׁמָּצָ֔אתִי אֵ֥ת שֶׁאָהֲבָ֖ה נַפְשִׁ֑י אֲחַזְתִּיו֙ וְלֹ֣א אַרְפֶּ֔נּוּ עַד־שֶׁ֤הֲבֵיאתִיו֙ אֶל־בֵּ֣ית אִמִּ֔י וְאֶל־חֶ֖דֶר הוֹרָתִֽי׃
    (1) Upon my couch at night I sought the one I love— I sought, but found him not. (2) “I must rise and roam the town, Through the streets and through the squares; I must seek the one I love.” I sought but found him not. (3) I met the watchmen Who patrol the town. “Have you seen the one I love?” (4) Scarcely had I passed them When I found the one I love. I held him fast, I would not let him go Till I brought him to my mother’s house, To the chamber of her who conceived me
  7. (א) הִנָּ֨ךְ יָפָ֤ה רַעְיָתִי֙ הִנָּ֣ךְ יָפָ֔ה עֵינַ֣יִךְ יוֹנִ֔ים מִבַּ֖עַד לְצַמָּתֵ֑ךְ שַׂעְרֵךְ֙ כְּעֵ֣דֶר הָֽעִזִּ֔ים שֶׁגָּלְשׁ֖וּ מֵהַ֥ר גִּלְעָֽד׃ (ב) שִׁנַּ֙יִךְ֙ כְּעֵ֣דֶר הַקְּצוּב֔וֹת שֶׁעָל֖וּ מִן־הָרַחְצָ֑ה שֶׁכֻּלָּם֙ מַתְאִימ֔וֹת וְשַׁכֻּלָ֖ה אֵ֥ין בָּהֶֽם׃ (ג) כְּח֤וּט הַשָּׁנִי֙ שִׂפְתֹתַ֔יִךְ וּמִדְבָּרֵ֖יךְ נָאוֶ֑ה כְּפֶ֤לַח הָֽרִמּוֹן֙ רַקָּתֵ֔ךְ מִבַּ֖עַד לְצַמָּתֵֽךְ׃ (ד) כְּמִגְדַּ֤ל דָּוִיד֙ צַוָּארֵ֔ךְ בָּנ֖וּי לְתַלְפִּיּ֑וֹת אֶ֤לֶף הַמָּגֵן֙ תָּל֣וּי עָלָ֔יו כֹּ֖ל שִׁלְטֵ֥י הַגִּבּוֹרִֽים׃ (ה) שְׁנֵ֥י שָׁדַ֛יִךְ כִּשְׁנֵ֥י עֳפָרִ֖ים תְּאוֹמֵ֣י צְבִיָּ֑ה הָרוֹעִ֖ים בַּשּׁוֹשַׁנִּֽים׃
    (1) Ah, you are fair, my darling, Ah, you are fair. Your eyes are like doves Behind your veil. Your hair is like a flock of goats Streaming down Mount Gilead. (2) Your teeth are like a flock of ewes Climbing up from the washing pool; All of them bear twins, And not one loses her young. (3) Your lips are like a crimson thread, Your mouth is lovely. Your brow behind your veil [Gleams] like a pomegranate split open. (4) Your neck is like the Tower of David, Built to hold weapons, Hung with a thousand shields— All the quivers of warriors. (5) Your breasts are like two fawns, Twins of a gazelle, Browsing among the lilies.
  8. (א) בָּ֣אתִי לְגַנִּי֮ אֲחֹתִ֣י כַלָּה֒ אָרִ֤יתִי מוֹרִי֙ עִם־בְּשָׂמִ֔י אָכַ֤לְתִּי יַעְרִי֙ עִם־דִּבְשִׁ֔י שָׁתִ֥יתִי יֵינִ֖י עִם־חֲלָבִ֑י אִכְל֣וּ רֵעִ֔ים שְׁת֥וּ וְשִׁכְר֖וּ דּוֹדִֽים׃ (ס) (ב) אֲנִ֥י יְשֵׁנָ֖ה וְלִבִּ֣י עֵ֑ר ק֣וֹל ׀ דּוֹדִ֣י דוֹפֵ֗ק פִּתְחִי־לִ֞י אֲחֹתִ֤י רַעְיָתִי֙ יוֹנָתִ֣י תַמָּתִ֔י שֶׁרֹּאשִׁי֙ נִמְלָא־טָ֔ל קְוֻּצּוֹתַ֖י רְסִ֥יסֵי לָֽיְלָה׃ (ג) פָּשַׁ֙טְתִּי֙ אֶת־כֻּתָּנְתִּ֔י אֵיכָ֖כָה אֶלְבָּשֶׁ֑נָּה רָחַ֥צְתִּי אֶת־רַגְלַ֖י אֵיכָ֥כָה אֲטַנְּפֵֽם׃ (ד) דּוֹדִ֗י שָׁלַ֤ח יָדוֹ֙ מִן־הַחֹ֔ר וּמֵעַ֖י הָמ֥וּ עָלָֽיו׃ (ה) קַ֥מְתִּֽי אֲנִ֖י לִפְתֹּ֣חַ לְדוֹדִ֑י וְיָדַ֣י נָֽטְפוּ־מ֗וֹר וְאֶצְבְּעֹתַי֙ מ֣וֹר עֹבֵ֔ר עַ֖ל כַּפּ֥וֹת הַמַּנְעֽוּל׃
    (1) I have come to my garden, My own, my bride; I have plucked my myrrh and spice, Eaten my honey and honeycomb, Drunk my wine and my milk. Eat, lovers, and drink: Drink deep of love! (2) I was asleep, But my heart was wakeful. Hark, my beloved knocks! “Let me in, my own, My darling, my faultless dove! For my head is drenched with dew, My locks with the damp of night.” (3) I had taken off my robe— Was I to don it again? I had bathed my feet— Was I to soil them again? (4) My beloved took his hand off the latch, And my heart was stirred for him. (5) I rose to let in my beloved; My hands dripped myrrh— My fingers, flowing myrrh— Upon the handles of the bolt.
  9. (י) דּוֹדִ֥י צַח֙ וְאָד֔וֹם דָּג֖וּל מֵרְבָבָֽה׃ (יא) רֹאשׁ֖וֹ כֶּ֣תֶם פָּ֑ז קְוּצּוֹתָיו֙ תַּלְתַּלִּ֔ים שְׁחֹר֖וֹת כָּעוֹרֵֽב׃ (יב) עֵינָ֕יו כְּיוֹנִ֖ים עַל־אֲפִ֣יקֵי מָ֑יִם רֹֽחֲצוֹת֙ בֶּֽחָלָ֔ב יֹשְׁב֖וֹת עַל־מִלֵּֽאת׃ (יג) לְחָיָו֙ כַּעֲרוּגַ֣ת הַבֹּ֔שֶׂם מִגְדְּל֖וֹת מֶרְקָחִ֑ים שִׂפְתוֹתָיו֙ שֽׁוֹשַׁנִּ֔ים נֹטְפ֖וֹת מ֥וֹר עֹבֵֽר׃ (יד) יָדָיו֙ גְּלִילֵ֣י זָהָ֔ב מְמֻלָּאִ֖ים בַּתַּרְשִׁ֑ישׁ מֵעָיו֙ עֶ֣שֶׁת שֵׁ֔ן מְעֻלֶּ֖פֶת סַפִּירִֽים׃ (טו) שׁוֹקָיו֙ עַמּ֣וּדֵי שֵׁ֔שׁ מְיֻסָּדִ֖ים עַל־אַדְנֵי־פָ֑ז מַרְאֵ֙הוּ֙ כַּלְּבָנ֔וֹן בָּח֖וּר כָּאֲרָזִֽים׃ (טז) חִכּוֹ֙ מַֽמְתַקִּ֔ים וְכֻלּ֖וֹ מַחֲּמַדִּ֑ים זֶ֤ה דוֹדִי֙ וְזֶ֣ה רֵעִ֔י בְּנ֖וֹת יְרוּשָׁלִָֽם׃
    (10) My beloved is clear-skinned and ruddy, Preeminent among ten thousand. (11) His head is finest gold, His locks are curled And black as a raven. (12) His eyes are like doves By watercourses, Bathed in milk, Set by a brimming pool. (13) His cheeks are like beds of spices, Banks of perfume His lips are like lilies; They drip flowing myrrh. (14) His hands are rods of gold, Studded with beryl; His belly a tablet of ivory, Adorned with sapphires. (15) His legs are like marble pillars Set in sockets of fine gold. He is majestic as Lebanon, Stately as the cedars. (16) His mouth is delicious And all of him is delightful. Such is my beloved, Such is my darling, O maidens of Jerusalem!
  10. (ב) מַה־יָּפ֧וּ פְעָמַ֛יִךְ בַּנְּעָלִ֖ים בַּת־נָדִ֑יב חַמּוּקֵ֣י יְרֵכַ֔יִךְ כְּמ֣וֹ חֲלָאִ֔ים מַעֲשֵׂ֖ה יְדֵ֥י אָמָּֽן׃ (ג) שָׁרְרֵךְ֙ אַגַּ֣ן הַסַּ֔הַר אַל־יֶחְסַ֖ר הַמָּ֑זֶג בִּטְנֵךְ֙ עֲרֵמַ֣ת חִטִּ֔ים סוּגָ֖ה בַּשּׁוֹשַׁנִּֽים׃ (ד) שְׁנֵ֥י שָׁדַ֛יִךְ כִּשְׁנֵ֥י עֳפָרִ֖ים תָּאֳמֵ֥י צְבִיָּֽה׃ (ה) צַוָּארֵ֖ךְ כְּמִגְדַּ֣ל הַשֵּׁ֑ן עֵינַ֜יִךְ בְּרֵכ֣וֹת בְּחֶשְׁבּ֗וֹן עַל־שַׁ֙עַר֙ בַּת־רַבִּ֔ים אַפֵּךְ֙ כְּמִגְדַּ֣ל הַלְּבָנ֔וֹן צוֹפֶ֖ה פְּנֵ֥י דַמָּֽשֶׂק׃ (ו) רֹאשֵׁ֤ךְ עָלַ֙יִךְ֙ כַּכַּרְמֶ֔ל וְדַלַּ֥ת רֹאשֵׁ֖ךְ כָּאַרְגָּמָ֑ן מֶ֖לֶךְ אָס֥וּר בָּרְהָטִֽים׃ (ז) מַה־יָּפִית֙ וּמַה־נָּעַ֔מְתְּ אַהֲבָ֖ה בַּתַּֽעֲנוּגִֽים׃ (ח) זֹ֤את קֽוֹמָתֵךְ֙ דָּֽמְתָ֣ה לְתָמָ֔ר וְשָׁדַ֖יִךְ לְאַשְׁכֹּלֽוֹת׃ (ט) אָמַ֙רְתִּי֙ אֶעֱלֶ֣ה בְתָמָ֔ר אֹֽחֲזָ֖ה בְּסַנְסִנָּ֑יו וְיִֽהְיוּ־נָ֤א שָׁדַ֙יִךְ֙ כְּאֶשְׁכְּל֣וֹת הַגֶּ֔פֶן וְרֵ֥יחַ אַפֵּ֖ךְ כַּתַּפּוּחִֽים׃ (י) וְחִכֵּ֕ךְ כְּיֵ֥ין הַטּ֛וֹב הוֹלֵ֥ךְ לְדוֹדִ֖י לְמֵישָׁרִ֑ים דּוֹבֵ֖ב שִׂפְתֵ֥י יְשֵׁנִֽים׃ (יא) אֲנִ֣י לְדוֹדִ֔י וְעָלַ֖י תְּשׁוּקָתֽוֹ׃ (ס)
    (2) How lovely are your feet in sandals, O daughter of nobles! Your rounded thighs are like jewels, The work of a master’s hand. (3) Your navel is like a round goblet— Let mixed wine not be lacking!— Your belly like a heap of wheat Hedged about with lilies. (4) Your breasts are like two fawns, Twins of a gazelle. (5) Your neck is like a tower of ivory, Your eyes like pools in Heshbon By the gate of Bath-rabbim, Your nose like the Lebanon tower That faces toward Damascus. (6) The head upon you is like crimson wool, The locks of your head are like purple— A king is held captive in the tresses. (7) How fair you are, how beautiful! O Love, with all its rapture! (8) Your stately form is like the palm, Your breasts are like clusters. (9) I say: Let me climb the palm, Let me take hold of its branches; Let your breasts be like clusters of grapes, Your breath like the fragrance of apples, (10) And your mouth like choicest wine. “Let it flow to my beloved as new wine Gliding over the lips of sleepers.” (11) I am my beloved’s, And his desire is for me.
  11. (יא) כֶּ֣רֶם הָיָ֤ה לִשְׁלֹמֹה֙ בְּבַ֣עַל הָמ֔וֹן נָתַ֥ן אֶת־הַכֶּ֖רֶם לַנֹּטְרִ֑ים אִ֛ישׁ יָבִ֥א בְּפִרְי֖וֹ אֶ֥לֶף כָּֽסֶף׃ (יב) כָּרְמִ֥י שֶׁלִּ֖י לְפָנָ֑י הָאֶ֤לֶף לְךָ֙ שְׁלֹמֹ֔ה וּמָאתַ֖יִם לְנֹטְרִ֥ים אֶת־פִּרְיֽוֹ׃ (יג) הַיוֹשֶׁ֣בֶת בַּגַּנִּ֗ים חֲבֵרִ֛ים מַקְשִׁיבִ֥ים לְקוֹלֵ֖ךְ הַשְׁמִיעִֽינִי׃ (יד) בְּרַ֣ח ׀ דּוֹדִ֗י וּֽדְמֵה־לְךָ֤ לִצְבִי֙ א֚וֹ לְעֹ֣פֶר הָֽאַיָּלִ֔ים עַ֖ל הָרֵ֥י בְשָׂמִֽים׃
    (11) Solomon had a vineyard In Baal-hamon. He had to post guards in the vineyard: A man would give for its fruit A thousand pieces of silver. (12) I have my very own vineyard: You may have the thousand, O Solomon, And the guards of the fruit two hundred! (13) O you who linger in the garden, A lover is listening; Let me hear your voice. (14) “Hurry, my beloved, Swift as a gazelle or a young stag, To the hills of spices!”
  12. (ח) הֲרֵי מְפֹרָשׁ בַּתּוֹרָה וּבַנְּבִיאִים שֶׁאֵין הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא גּוּף וּגְוִיָּה שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (יהושע ב יא) "כִּי ה' אֱלֹקֵיכֶם הוּא אֱלֹקִים בַּשָּׁמַיִם מִמַּעַל וְעַל הָאָרֶץ מִתָּחַת". וְהַגּוּף לֹא יִהְיֶה בִּשְׁנֵי מְקוֹמוֹת. וְנֶאֱמַר (דברים ד טו) "כִּי לֹא רְאִיתֶם כָּל תְּמוּנָה". וְנֶאֱמַר (ישעיה מ כה) "וְאֶל מִי תְדַמְּיוּנִי וְאֶשְׁוֶה". וְאִלּוּ הָיָה גּוּף הָיָה דּוֹמֶה לִשְׁאָר גּוּפִים:

    (ט) אִם כֵּן מַהוּ זֶה שֶׁכָּתוּב בַּתּוֹרָה "וְתַחַת רַגְלָיו". (שמות לא יח) "כְּתוּבִים בְּאֶצְבַּע אֱלֹקִים". "יַד ה'". "עֵינֵי ה'". "אָזְנֵי ה'". וְכַיּוֹצֵא בִּדְבָרִים הָאֵלּוּ. הַכּל לְפִי דַּעְתָּן שֶׁל בְּנֵי אָדָם הוּא שֶׁאֵינָן מַכִּירִין אֶלָּא (הַנּוֹפוֹת) [הַגּוּפוֹת] וְדִבְּרָה תּוֹרָה כִּלְשׁוֹן בְּנֵי אָדָם. וְהַכּל כִּנּוּיִים הֵן. שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (דברים לב מא) "אִם שַׁנּוֹתִי בְּרַק חַרְבִּי". וְכִי חֶרֶב יֵשׁ לוֹ וּבְחֶרֶב הוּא הוֹרֵג אֶלָּא מָשָׁל וְהַכּל מָשָׁל. רְאָיָה לַדָּבָר שֶׁנָּבִיא אֶחָד אוֹמֵר שֶׁרָאָה הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא (דניאל ז ט) "לְבוּשֵׁיִהּ כִּתְלַג חִוֵּר". וְאֶחָד רָאָהוּ (ישעיה סג א) "חֲמוּץ בְּגָדִים מִבָּצְרָה". משֶׁה רַבֵּנוּ עַצְמוֹ רָאָהוּ עַל הַיָּם כְּגִבּוֹר עוֹשֶׂה מִלְחָמָה. וּבְסִינַי כִּשְׁלִיחַ צִבּוּר עָטוּף. לוֹמַר שֶׁאֵין לוֹ דְּמוּת וְצוּרָה אֶלָּא הַכּל בְּמַרְאֵה הַנְּבוּאָה וּבְמַחֲזֶה. וַאֲמִתַּת הַדָּבָר אֵין דַּעְתּוֹ שֶׁל אָדָם מֵבִין וְלֹא יְכוֹלָה לְהַשִּׂיגוֹ וּלְחָקְרוֹ. וְזֶה שֶׁאָמַר הַכָּתוּב (איוב יא ז) "הַחֵקֶר אֱלוֹקַּ תִּמְצָא אִם עַד תַּכְלִית שַׁדַּי תִּמְצָא":

    (8) Behold, it is clearly indicated in the Torah and in the Prophets that the Holy One, blessed is He! is Incorporeal for it is said: "That the Lord, He is God in heaven above and upon the earth beneath" (Deut. 4.39); a corporeal being is incapable of being in two places simultaneously; and it is also said: "For ye saw no manner of form" (Ibid.–15); and it is moreover said: "To whom will ye liken me, that I should be equal?" (Isa. 40,25); had He been corporeal He would be like other bodies.

    (9) If so, wherefore is it written in the Torah, "And there was under his feet" (Ex. 24,10), "Written with the finger of God" (Ex. 31,18), "The hand of the Lord" (Ex. 9,3), "The eyes of the Lord" (Deut. 11, 12), "The ears of the Lord" (Num. 11,18) and more like expressions? All such terminology is in accordance with the conception of sons of man who cannot recognize aught but corporeal things, and the words of the Torah is like human speech, but they are all attributes; for example, it is said: "If I whet My glittering sword," (Deut. 32. 41.); Hath He a sword, or doth He slay with a sword? But it is a metaphor, so is all metaphorical. As testimony thereto, one prophet says that he saw the Holy One, blessed is He! "His raiment was as white snow" (Dan. 7,9), and another saw Him "With crimsoned garments from Bozrah" (Isa. 63,1); Moses our Master himself saw Him at the Red Sea "as a hero engaged in battle," (Ex. 15.3) and upon Sinai as "a garbed minister of a congregation (Ex. 19.19.), to say: He hath neither form nor image, but all is a vision of prophecy and a mirage, the absolute truth of the matter no human mind comprehends or is able to fathom it or penetrate it. It is even this what it says in Scripture: "Canst thou find out the deep things of God? Canst thou attain unto the purposes of the Almighty?" (Job. 11,7).

  13. 1. How does this function as a love poem between two people?
    2. How does this function as a the connection that we have/want to have with God?

    3. Why are so many metaphors and images used to describe this relationship?

    4. The text famously says, "My beloved is mine, and I am theirs." Why does this idea come to represent an ideal in relationships?

    5. The search for one's love has been compared to a search for higher spiritual meaning - a sometimes endless search with no guarantee of success. In what ways are these worthwhile searches? In what ways are they foolish? 

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