Netivat Sofrut: diary of a Soferet

Adventures of a female sofer learning to heal the world by doing Holy Work...writing a Sefer Torah

נחזיר את השכינה למקומה בצייון ובתבל כלה

"Let us restore the Divine In-Dwelling to Her Place in Zion & infuse Her spirit throughout the whole inhabited world."

So wherever we are, let us bring the Peace of G@d's Presence.

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Location: Vancouver/London, British Columbia/UK, Canada

SCRIBAL EVANGELIST As the only living certified Soferet (סופרת - female Jewish ritual scribe) & the first woman to practice sofrut (creation of sacred Hebrew texts) in over 200 years, I feel an obligation to blog about my experiences of The Work. I am also currently researching the foundation of a lost tradtion of women practicing this holy craft. For more on the services I provide, please see Soferet.com; Sofrut Nation. I am now available to engage with students, male or female, wishing to enter into the preliminary stage of learning sofrut. You are welcome to join me on this path. "Tzedeq, tzedeq tir'dof - Justice, justice you shall pursue." Devarim/Deuteronomy 16:20.

Wednesday, June 30, 2004

BS"D

REDEMPTION...

I'm taking the time now to catch up on some well-deserved blogging:


>We learn that base metals like iron must never come into contact with the qlaf
>(parchment) or the d'yo (ink) used to make a Sefer Torah, because these metals
>are symbolic of violence & war. This is why Ashkenazim write with a quill &
>Mizrachim use a reed. This is why we scrape our errors away with a shard of
>glass, score our lines with a rose thorn, & sew the sheets together with
>gold-plated needles.

Can we not redeem these materials in G*d's work and name?

--
Posted by Poor Mad Peter to Netivat Sofrut at 6/26/2004 05:12:03 AM


Poor Mad Peter askes an excellent question. I gave it much thought, off & on, over some time. I think the problem isn't with these materials. Some materials have problems - for example, as the "Torah shall be in our mouths", we can only use the skin of a kosher animal to write on, the feather of a kosher bird (if you're Ashkenazi, as I am) to write with, & the dyo can only contain water-soluable & edible ingredients. But what wrong have we ever committed with parchment or feathers? Iron, on the other hand, bronze, tin...we've used these materials & indeed still do, to torture & to murder. We - humanity - are using these materials for evil instead of good (see "swords into ploughshares"), so I don't think it's the materials which need redemption, as they are only tools. I think WE are the ones who need redemption. & until we can learn to raise the holy sparks contained in all physicality to perform sacred work & not base offenses, then we must separate & clearly divide certain things for the sake of our own minds, emotions & psyches. Then perhaps we'll have a chance to evolve. In Hebrew, separation, for an intended holy purpose, equals sanctity. Think about that. When G@d is ONE, separation=sanctity.
Sigh.
Besides, the Sefer Torah is a balanced document as it is. There is much violence, war, rape, fear in it, but also love, kindness, bravery, justice. Just as we learn that the white "negative" space of the qlaf is as important as the black lettering, so we must give thime & space & attention to the physical repeating of this Torah & everything within it without unbalancing it.

We *must* learn to change our individual & collective consciousnesses!...this is necessary to actualize Olam HaBa & make it Olam HaZeh.

1 Comments:

Blogger Poor Mad Peter said...

I learn so much from you, that I am tempted to call you Rabbi, and you would deserve it, were it not for the admonition against offering temptation to others. As you have specifically mentionned concerns about ego gratification, you can understand my caution. This is excellent theology, and I in my turn will have much to ponder for a period of time.

2:14 PM  

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