Parashat Tazria

Shabbat Hahodesh
Leviticus 12:1-13:59

The Talmud relates an intriguing commentary on a verse describing the creation of humanity, “The Lord God formed man from the dust of the earth” (Genesis 2:7): “Rav Nahman, son of Rav Hisda, taught: ‘Why in “the Lord God formed man” is formed written with two yods?’” (Berachot 61a). Any idiosyncrasy in the biblical text is fodder for rabbinic interpretation, and here the Talmud raises a spelling concern. Rav Nahman is questioning why, in this verse, the word for formed (ya–yyitzer) is written with two of the Hebrew letter yod, instead of in its normal manner with one yod.

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Author: Marc Wolf

Keywords: Evil Inclination, Evil nature, Hara Yetser, Ha-ra Yetser, Hara Yetzer, Ha-ra Yetzer, Hara Yezer, Ha-ra Yezer, Intentional misspelling, Intentionally misspelled, Two jots, Two yodhs, Two yods, Yatsar, Yetsarim, Yetser ha ra, Yetser ra, Yetser tov, Yetzer, Yetzer ha ra, Yetzer Hara, Yetzer ra, Yezer ha ra, Yezer Hara

Bible reference(s): Genesis 2:7, Genesis 2:19, Romans 7:17-24

Source: “Parashat Tazria,” Jewish Theological Seminary,, April 5, 2008.

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