I'm not sure if the Maharal says this per se but I heard a beautiful mashal on the woman: when this object or matter changes shape the outer object or matter changes to that shape and so on. The inner object represents the woman and the outer shape represents the man. I was wondering where it's from and if it is from the Maharal, where does he say it?

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    Hey Max, welcome to Mi Yodeya! ....I'm having some trouble understanding your question, particularly with regards to the exact idea you're trying to find in the Maharal....can you elaborate a bit more on that idea? – MTL Sep 28 '14 at 14:16
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    Also, you might consider registering your account, which will give you access to more of the site's features. – MTL Sep 28 '14 at 14:17

The idea that you are referring to is called "Chomer" and "Tzurah" and is a recurring theme in the philosophy of the Maharal that extends beyond the mashal of man/woman.

The Maharal (Gur Aryeh, Devarim: 25:18) relates that all of creation is built in two complementary systems - Tzurah and Chomer. Tzurah is the influential force, providing a general direction and a general outline, or form. Chomer is the force that takes this influence and uses it to give form to matter, to put things in the proper place and composition.

For instance, Bereishit Bara Elokim Et Hashamayim Ve'et Ha'aretz. This is the first pair of complementary forces. Shamayim is the influential - the Tzurah. It provides a general form and direction. It provides the rain, and it envelopes all of creation. Aretz is the receiver of the influence. It receives the rain and uses it to bring forth vegetation, crops and minerals - the Chomer of the world.

In the same way, Zachar and Nekevah are complementary forces. The Zachar, the male, represents the "Tzurah" - the influential force that provides a general form and direction, while the Nekevah, the female, receives that influence and uses it to provide substance through birth, raising children, and providing the family with its needs. The woman takes the influence of the man and brings it into practice and fruition.

(English explanation courtesy of Ramat Shilo)

  • Thanks for that.....it was unclear who said all that stuff in the blockquotes.....if you hadn't put it in blockquotes, I would have thought that it was you ;) – MTL Sep 28 '14 at 17:18
  • Isn't this the opposite of what the OP described? He described the man as being the outer shape that responds to the woman. The Maharal is describing the other way around. – Y     e     z Sep 28 '14 at 18:58
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    @YEZ the OP didn't seem to clear on what exactly he heard. However the idea of one effecting the other reminded me of the concept of Chomer/Tzura that is so prevalent in the Maharal's works. If the OP comes back and says that that's not it or provides more details we will try again – eramm Sep 29 '14 at 12:42

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