Rav Nahman: Why Two Yods?

[Emmanuel Levinas] makes the case, for example, in the reading “Et Dieu créa la femme” [And God created the woman, Genesis 2:22] for his translation of yetzer, וַיִּיצֶר. The reading is from the tractate Berakhot, p. 61a, and focuses on Genesis 2:7, where God makes man. Rav Nahman asks just why the word “made” or yetzer, וַיִּיצֶר, has two yods, the letter “ י ” usually, if doubled it represents a vocalization of yod as ‘ya’ or ‘yayee,’ as in garbayeem, גרביים, meaning “socks.” Nahman concludes that the double yod means that God created two inclinations in man, bad and good.

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Author: Matthew Wayne Guy

Keywords: diabolos, Evil angel, Evil Inclination, Evil nature, Hara Yetser, Ha-ra Yetser, Hara Yetzer, Ha-ra Yetzer, Hara Yezer, Ha-ra Yezer, Man's sinful nature, Mispelled word, Mispelling, Misspelling, Misspelled word, Origin of sin, Personification of evil, Two jots, Two yodhs, Two yods, Yatsar, Yetsarim, Yetser ha ra, Yetser ha tov, Yetser ra, Yetser tov, Yetzer, Yetzer ha ra, Yetzer ha tov, Yetzer Hara, Yetzer ra, Yetzer tov, Yezer ha ra, Yezer ha tov, Yezer Hara, Yezer tov, Yod, Yodh

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

Source: Translating “Hebrew” Into “Greek”: The Discursive Hermeneutics of Emmanuel Levinas’s Talmudic Readings, Dissertation, Louisiana State University and Agricultural & Mechanical College (2003).

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