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Re: orion perspectives, Essenes
> Indeed I should have credited the idea that *all* Qumran mss came from the
> Jerusalem temple to K.H. Rengstorf rather than N. Golb. If J. West's "...he
> never claimed that the scrolls came from the Temple library, but rather..."
> (which allows ambiguity) is read to mean he did not *include* the Temple,
> that's a mistake. E.g., Golb in Qumran Chronicle 2.3 (1993) 180: "...that
> the scrolls are remnants of various libraries in Jerusalem...and
> undoubtedly--as Prof. Rengstorf suggested in the 1960's--the library of the
> Temple itself." Yet for several reasons, some noted by A. Dupont-Sommer
> and L. Grabbe, that hypothesis is quite doubtful.
Of course Golb suggests that some of the scrolls would have come from
the Temple library. The point was, claiming that he says they all
did is a misrepresentation.
> Dave Washburn responded to my "'halakah,' strictly speaking, does
> not appear in the scrolls" by asserting "the term appears and so does the
> literary genre." Again: the term "halakah" in the Rabbinic and presumably
> Pharisaic sense appears in Qumran texts *zero* times.
Yes. I was in a hurry, a tad under the weather, and apparently
thinking of a different but similar term I had run across. I stand
> This fact, and the
> absence of Pharisee texts, together with anti-Pharisee texts (e.g.,
> 4QpNah), excludes any hypothesis that claims Qumran mss represent all or
> most contemporary Jews. And Essenes were not a "narrow splinter sect," to
> use Dave's (Golb-influenced?) phrase. Essenes were apparently more numerous
> than, e.g., Sadducees. (Again: Josephus and Philo wrote 4000 at one time;
> Philo wrote "myriads" over time.)
Once again Stephen is apparently reading what others write through
somewhat foggy glasses. I never said the Essenes were a narrow
splinter sect. Rather than repeat myself, I will suggest he go back
and read my post again.
> Actually, anyone open to considering my post before reacting to it
> will see that I was less interested in particular inadequate hypotheses
> that in motives for such responses such as wishing to remove Essenes from
> Qumran and (by denying evidence) locate them in neverland. By the way, I
And here we go again with the caricatures. I do not locate them in
"neverland," and I really wish you would stop that. I locate them in
every city, just as Josephus did. Come on, Stephen. Until we start
representing each other accurately and fairly, we can't even have a
[snip; note to self: check out the book he mentioned.]
> The term "status quo" is hardly apt for Qumran studies generally,
> or my views specifically. Too much new is happening for that, such as all
> the texts now being accessible and the find of the new Qumran Essene
> ostracon. I sometimes disagree with scholars Dave (for whatever reason)
> derisively calls "mainstream," e.g., with Vermes on the Wicked Priest, with
> Cross on etymology of "Essenes," with de Vaux on some dates, etc.
First of all, denying that there is a status quo that believes the
Essene question is settled forever is just silly. Stephen continues
to call that little ostracon "Essene" even though there's nothing
even passingly Essene in it, and the text itself is vague enough that
it could be nearly anything. To put it bluntly, it's about as Essene
as this post. Second, Stephen is again misrepresenting me by somehow
getting the notion that I used the term "mainstream" in a derisive
sense. I don't know where in the world he got that, but it's wrong.
It's a descriptive term, nothing more.
> I hope some orion readers noticed the actual main subject of my
> post. I do not imagine that I covered this complex subject of varieties of
> Jewish, Christian, and other presuppositions on Qumran adequately--indeed,
> no publication I've seen has--but, at least, it was an attempt to address
And since I didn't see the post that apparently accused you of
antisemitism - and let me go on record as saying that, from what I
have seen of your writings, such a charge is ridiculous - I didn't
address it. My goal was to correct a number of misrepresentations in
your post. And it is now clear that such actions only result in
further misrepresentations. I cannot continue in a discussion when
the other party simply isn't listening. I have done my best to
represent your views as accurately as I can; Golb has done the same
consistently throughout his writings wrt the Essene hypothesis (and
let's get real, that's all it is). You have not done the same for
him or for me.