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Re: orion-list Re: Dumb questions department.

Dear Risa:

You write:
"Shouldn't we be trying to find out what the things actually _say_ and
what specific scrolls _are_ before we start looking for "hidden 
meanings"? .... Could we also translate 'Moreh Tzedek' properly?"

I am certainly supportive of your precision of translating the word
that is so commonly & casually replaced with word "Righteousness."  It is
very important to know the roots of words, before exploring into the

You say you are :
"very sensitive to sloppy, semantically  loaded translations by people
who clearly had an insufficient knowledge of the target language...
and had a bias to begin with."

I certainly have to be one of those in the "insufficient knowledge"
camp.  But I also think any GOOD translation ***HAS*** to be
"semantically loaded" - - because that is how the words were
originally heard, and perhaps this is ESPECIALLY so with text
from the DSS matrix.  It is hard to believe there could be ANY
ancient texts with MORE nuances packed in.  And to deliberately
STRIP the nuances away is just as subject
to bias as trying to include it would be.

By the way, in another email I just posted, I used the phrases "ripped
and "gun shy."  I think I should leave it to you to provide the CORRECT
translations for "ripped off" (a fabric or sheet of material being torn 
from an object?) and "gun shy" (unusual reticence with fire arms?).

Because having the PRECISE definition for these terms would no doubt
lead to the more precise understanding of what I was trying to say:  i.e.
a controversial DSS scholar is unusually concerned about fire arms and
some people accused him of ripping up some of their paper.

I for one am happy to know that Tzedek means "Right Wayness" and not
that sloppy phrase "Righteousness."  Certainly without the benefit of
desert dwellers must have found a lack of direction to be quite an 

Please forgive my facetiousness but I think it poses an important
to all translators:  To understand the roots of the words being used, but
also "discover" the lost nuances of the meanings that were a VITAL aspect
of the words the ancient listener was hearing, and which may supersede
the old meanings completely.  For example, if I ask you to "CONSIDER" my
point, does that mean I'm asking you to "Look To the Stars" [Anglo Saxon
"CON" joined to the Latin word SIDERA for Stars] while you read this, or
have I and my audience COMPLETELY forgotten the old sense of the phrase
and now read it as a single verb?

Only someone who is bold enough to suggest a "loaded bias" of my
writings would uncover what is HIDDEN and NOT hidden in my texts.

George Brooks
Tampa, FL
For private reply, e-mail to George Brooks <george.x.brooks@juno.com>
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