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Re: Calendar, MMT

>Russell Gmirkin writes:
>> On Greg's suggestion, Moshe Shulman has already pointed out the incongruity
>> of the priestly establishment "separating" from the people.  I would add, MMT
>Voluntary separation of priests from non-priestly people
>seems a well-attested issue.  Didn't you see David Suter's

I have no problem with that. The only problem is how could the priest in
charge of the temple seperate from the laity who would bring sacrifices? It
seems an impossible thing to do. It is however possible for them to seperate
from the temple if they thought it was being run incorrectly. (Especially if
they thought it  was becoming 'unclean'.

>> is highly critical of the priestly establishment.  The entirety of MMT is
>> _capable_ of being interpreted as critical of the current temple cult
>> practices.  More to the point, MMT 1 iv 4, 8-11 accuses "the sons
>of Aaron"
>> and "part of the priests" of defiling themselves and the sanctuary with their
>> fornications.  This is hardly something written by the priestly
>> establishment.
>MMT is a very broken text.  I have not worked on the text
>but am relying on the Qimron and Strugnell transcription.
>In Q and S's transcription, there is no
>reading of "sanctuary" which you identify as part of the

That is true. I wonder where he gets this. There is some implication with
regards to sacrificial legislation that uncleanliness could occur to the
sacncuary, but it is not explicitly stated.

>text.  HZNWT, the word behind your "fornications", is the
>subject of some discussion in Q and S but they take it as
>a proper versus improper marriage issue--priestly
>intermarriage with laity is what MMT means by HZNWT, according

I disagree. HZNWT means literally the prostitutes (ZNH being a prostitute). It
appears that there is a phrase here starting with the word W'P (end line 81)
which means 'and also (82) their seed with prostitutes...' This (W'P) is
seperating between the previous laws of prohibited unions that are compared to
the illegal mixtures of different kinds. Whether these were really prostitutes
or women so called for other reasons (possibly second marriages?) I am not
sure. But it does appear to be a new idea/halacha and not a continuation of
the previous one.

>(intermarry with laity?--Q and S restoration)...]".  This
>could be read as outsiders critical of an establishment but
>it seems to me also can be read as conservatives in
>power condemning other priests who have acted wickedly.

I am sorry Greg, I have read lines 7-8 and I cannot accept this. 'You (pl.)
know that we have seperated ourselves for the multitude of the people and from
all their uncleanliness, and from being entangled in these affairs, and from
to go together with them...' These are definitely people who have chosen to be

>> Also, in the succeeding section (per Martinez reconstruction),
>> MMT 7+8 4-8 further accuse (the priests, by context) of violence,
>> fornication, and bringing an abomination into the House (i.e. the temple),
>> and states that "we have segregated ourselves from the rest of the people
>>  [to avoid] mingling ourselves in these affairs."  The reason for the
>> separation is explicitly to avoid participating in the sins of the priests at
>> Jerusalem.  Clearly this was not written by the Jerusalem priestly
>> establishment!!!
>The line about violence and HZNWT followed by "[...] places
>were destroyed" may be a reference to something past in
>historical tradition.  This again may be rhetorical setup to the

I think you are right here. Let me propose that it is talking about the
Biblical story of the daughters of Moav in Numbers 25 (although another
possibility would be the flood)

>correct the situation in the present.  The question is is this
>(a) some priests talking about other priests, or is this
>(b) non-priests talking about all priests.  You assume the
>latter as if this is self-evident.  It is not self-evident

I don't know if it is relevant as to which it is. The text is not too clear. I
see nothing that would make it the work of a priest.

   |            /\           |                         |
   |       ____/_ \____      |                         |
   |       \  ___\ \  /      |                         |
   |        \/ /  \/ /       |     Moshe Shulman       |
   |        / /\__/_/\       | mshulman@ix.netcom.com  |
   |       /__\ \_____\      |                         |
   |           \  /          |                         |
   |            \/           |                         |