The weekly Torah portion of Bereshit (Genesis 1:1-6:8)

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Why does Scripture in parashat bereishit need to mention the four rivers?

In Bereishit 2:10, scripture mentions the following: 10: And a river flowed out of Eden to water the garden, and from there it separated and became four heads. 11: The name of one is Pishon; ...
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Commentaries concerning the meaning of Breishit 1:1

What do the Rabbis say about the meaning of the beginning of the Tanach – specifically, do they read the first verse as a kind of overview of creation (since Shamayim and Aretz did not exist before ...
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Can someone help me understand Genesis Rabbah 4?

The beginning of Genesis Rabbah 4 talks mainly about the firmament in creation account. It goes as follows (from the Artscroll Mesorah publication): (4:2): "At the moment the Holy One, Blessed is ...
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How to translate Olam in the Torah?

Bereshit 3:22: ‏…וְלָקַח גַּם מֵעֵץ הַחַיִּים וְאָכַל וָחַי לְעֹלָם In search for a definition of the word עֹלָם, Olam, as in this verse, I found different translations: 'Universe', ...
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What exactly was Adam and Chava's sin?

Bereshit 2:9-10 tells about HaShem Elohim made to spring up every tree (in Gan Eden) pleasing to the sight, and tov for food and the Etz HaChayim (Tree of Life) also in the midst of Gan Eden, and the ...
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Why did Chava give Adam the fruit to eat?

For what reason did Chava give Adam fruit from the tree of knowledge to eat?
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Adam 's sin out of deveikut?

I found this online: In his sefer "Bilvavi Mishkan Evneh," R' Itamar Shwartz emphasizes the important point that our existence in this world is for the purpose of being davuk to our Creator; to be ...
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Adah and Tzillah, what is known of them? Could one name daughters after them?

Is there any other information available on Adah and Tzillah, who are mentioned briefly in Bereshit chapter 4? Were they positive or negative role models? Would it be appropriate to give one's ...
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מחויאל and מחייאל Bereshis perek 4:18

Why did the pasuk change מחויאל to מחייאל in Bereshis 4:18? Is there any peirush who discusses this change and it significance?
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What is the purpose of the genealogy of Genesis 4:17-22?

What is the purpose of the genealogy of Genesis 4:17–22?
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Adam and Eve as parable or literal

Was the story of Adam and Eve meant as a parable for the dawn of civilization after human species evolved for millennium or is Adam and Eve to be literally read as the first humans to ever be created. ...
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Why did Hevel suffer?

I've heard many times from Rabbis and Morims that every suffering we have in life is the consequence of something bad we've done. And for babies that suffer at birth and righteous people that seem to ...
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The mysteries of Gan Eden.

Bereshit 1:1 and 2:4 seems to indicate that both stories are about the creation of heaven and earth, but then suddenly in verse 2:8 it states that HaShem planted a gan (garden) in Eden. Is Gan Eden ...
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Human v.s. Animal: spiritual v.s the most fine physical entitie kind of soul?

If animals don't have spirits (Does anyone have a proof text that animals *don't* have spirits?), than what is the meaning of nishmat ruach chayim in Bereshit 7:22? And in what way does it differ ...