Monday, May 18, 2009

What’s in your coffee table?


Jewish date:  24 ’Iyyar 5769.

Today’s holidays:  Day 39 of the ‘Omer, Feast Day of Elias Ashmole.

Today’s quasi-holidays:  International Museum Day, Victoria Day.

Relevant to Divine Misconceptions:  “Don't dumb down the Bible” and “Let my people know!”:  There is a new translation out of the Hebrew Bible (Tanakh), Tanakh Ram.  This is a translation of the Hebrew Bible into Hebrew—Modern Hebrew.  While Biblical and Modern Hebrew do have a lot in common, there are enough differences that Israelis often have trouble understanding the Hebrew Bible, much as Modern English speakers have trouble understanding Shakespeare.  There is therefore a need for works to fill in the gap between knowledge and understanding.  Indeed, there have been many translations of and commentaries on the Hebrew Bible written, starting during the Second Temple Period.  Translations into languages other than Hebrew alone has at times been controversial, due to the fact that people may try using them to avoid learning (Biblical) Hebrew.  With translation, there is always the problem that the meaning of a translation is rarely identical with the meaning of the original.  One can expect plenty of people to be no happier with a translation into Modern Hebrew than with a translation into another language altogether.  I recommend using Tanakh Ram if at all as a stepping stone towards learning Biblical Hebrew.

Today’s news and commentary:
Today’s weird thing is The Periodic Coffee Table.  Enjoy and share the weirdness.

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