Questions tagged [creation]

Questions about the creation of the world.

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38
votes
13answers
3k views

Bereishit vs. science

How does Judaism deal with the differences between scientific evidence of the beginning of the world and the account(s) in Bereishit?
32
votes
11answers
6k views

How are pre-creation >4000 BCE human civilization and pre-flood >2300 BCE civilizations that continued reconciled with Judaism?

How does human history fit in with the Torah's timeline? (This is not about why the universe and Earth look so old.) There is extensive evidence of a human population and human civilizations from ...
31
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9answers
2k views

Why the vast difference of opinion about the age of the Universe?

5770 and 13,000,000,000 is a big difference! I am looking for a good explanation for the different views of the age of the universe, [the Tanakh's view and astronomy's view.] Please help me out!
21
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3answers
3k views

When did we start counting the Year since Creation?

This year is 5772 / תשעב (Taf-Shin-Ayin-Bet) on the Hebrew Calendar. What is the earliest reference to the Year counting from the Creation of the world?
20
votes
9answers
1k views

Why is there so much space and matter in the universe?

If the point of all of creation is for the Jewish people to accept and carry out the Torah [I realize this is not axiomatic and maybe a point of contention - see Shabbat 88a] . What is the need for ...
19
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2answers
13k views

Do religious Jews generally believe the serpent of Garden of Eden was Satan?

Upon reading the recent CNN article, That Actually Isn't In The Bible, one not-really-in-the-Bible misconception they cite is the idea that serpent in the Garden of Eden was the Satan. The article ...
18
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6answers
583 views

Let there be light! But from where?

According to Genesis 1:3, "And G-d said, Let there be light; and there was light." What light is the Torah referring to if the sun which produces light by day was created only on the 4th day of ...
18
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2answers
1k views

Did Adam and Eve have bellybuttons, fingerprints or ridge over lip?

Since they were created by God and did not form in a womb and had no umbilical chord did they have bellybuttons or fingerprints (that are formed by womb pressure) or upper lip ridge which the malach ...
17
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7answers
1k views

How did the moon shrink?

The Bavli, Chulin 60:2, says (in my own loose translation): Rabbi Shim'on ben Pazi noted a contradiction: [B'reshis 1:16] says, "God made the two big luminaries" and "the big luminary… ...
16
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3answers
327 views

Why name but five creations?

God is described as creating many things in B'reshis chapter 1: animals, people, stars, plants, etc. However, about only five of his creations does it say that he called them by a name: "וַיִּקְרָא ...
14
votes
1answer
781 views

Why did Hashem create the world?

Some opinion say that Hashem created the world to bestow goodness on man (and couldn't just place him in the Garden of Eden because it would be "bread of shame" - that man would get things for free). ...
13
votes
4answers
362 views

When did G-d create darkness?

Bereshit 1:5 says: וַיִּקְרָ֨א אֱלֹהִ֤ים ׀ לָאוֹר֙ י֔וֹם וְלַחֹ֖שֶׁךְ קָ֣רָא לָ֑יְלָה וַֽיְהִי־עֶ֥רֶב וַֽיְהִי־בֹ֖קֶר י֥וֹם אֶחָֽד׃ (פ And God called the light Day, and the darkness He called ...
12
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1answer
722 views

Is programming against Judaism?

I just recently learned about this site when I saw Judaism was one of the stack overflow topics. I have been Jewish all my life and two years ago I started programming. I was wondering if there ...
12
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5answers
394 views

Where was Adam created?

The Torah tells us G-d brought Adam into Gan Eden after his creation from earth (Bereishis 2:15). If this is the case where was Adam created?
12
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2answers
2k views

Why is it important that God created the first pair of tongs?

It says in Pirkei Avot 5:6 that God made the first pair of tongs immediately before creation. Could not one have made tongs out of bone or wood wrapped in leather or made with a metal, such as gold, ...
12
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5answers
387 views

Reconciling Nature with Continuous Creation

I have always understood that when God created the universe, he subjected it to a natural order and process under which the universe can function. The laws of nature are those that govern the universe,...
12
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4answers
2k views

What is meant by the 974 "worlds" that were "created and destroyed"?

Midrash Tehillim 90:13 says that God created and destroyed 974 worlds before this one. What exactly does that mean? I've heard it used in defense of a modern understanding of evolution and cosmology ...
11
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4answers
680 views

Plants before the Sun in the Order of Creation

Why does plant life precede the Sun in the order of creation given that plants need the Sun to do photosynthesis?
10
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6answers
2k views

Does God continually (re)create the physical world?

1) Does God continually renew the physical world in the sense that if he didn't give direct input at any given moment it would disappear? 2) If the answer to #1 is that God does continually (re)...
10
votes
2answers
400 views

What is the proof that HaShem's purpose in creation was to bestow good?

Rabbi M Ch Luzzatto in Derech HaShem (1:2:1) gives HaShem’s purpose in creation to “bestow of His good to another”. (Translation Aryeh Kaplan.) The translator in his notes gives several sources/...
10
votes
3answers
205 views

What is the need for angels?

Why did G-d create angels to assign them specific tasks (Bava Metzia 86b)? Since G-d is omnipotent, what is the need for angels -- why doesn't He perform these tasks directly?
9
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4answers
1k views

Can a person still be an Orthodox Jew and believe that the Torah contains narratives that are not scientifically correct?

I am taking the position that perhaps the Torah does contain narratives that are not scientifically correct, such as the creation and early human history narratives found in the first 11 chapters of ...
9
votes
1answer
273 views

What is the significance of the place from which Eve was created?

Bereshis (2:21-22) tells us that God created Eve from the rib (or 'side') of Adam. What is the significance, if any, of choosing this particular bone from which to form Eve, as opposed to any other ...
9
votes
2answers
267 views

Proof that Hashem recreates the world every day

It says in the first blessing before the morning Shema that Hashem renews, in His goodness, every day, the work of Creation, as it says: "To the One Who creates great luminaries, for eternal is His ...
9
votes
4answers
338 views

Does HaShem need rest?

Why did HaShem create Shabbos? He doesn't need rest!
9
votes
3answers
134 views

Why are the sun and moon not named during creation?

During the 6 days of creation, many things are made and named (sky, grass, seeds, water, land, stars) but the sun and moon are referred to only as the lights/luminaries (Ber 1:16) וַיַּ֣עַשׂ ...
9
votes
1answer
236 views

Dilemma for Jewish Scientists

A member of my shul, scientist who was on the short-list to win a Nobel a couple of years ago, made an interesting point about his own ethical issue. As a scientist involved in biology, professionally,...
9
votes
1answer
141 views

Was there sentient life with free will in the worlds that G-d destroyed before making our world?

The midrash at B'reshis Rabba 3:7 states that G-d created a number of worlds and destroyed them before the creation of our world. Is the Midrash implying that the earlier worlds included sentient ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

Sources for the world being round in the Gemara

Can anyone bring me proofs from the Gemara that proves the world was round-and that this was known 2000+ years ago? I have looked around and I can't seem to find any sources which prove this.
8
votes
5answers
840 views

Was the world created with din or with rachamim?

I remember Chazal saying somewhere that the world could not survive, had it been created with din/harsh judgement/strictness. However, in Bereshis, at the very beginning, it says: בְּרֵאשִׁית ...
8
votes
5answers
10k views

What is the firmament?

In Genesis 1:6-8 the firmament and its creation are mentioned for the first time: And God said: 'Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.' ...
8
votes
3answers
193 views

Who suggests that Creation Ex nihilo was only a small point and light?

If this is a simple minded question, please forgive me, but I'm not Jewish and so most of my information is via naive study and second hand. I've been told by a Jewish friend in my physics class ...
8
votes
2answers
853 views

How were fish formed? Did Adam name them?

Animals (including birds) are formed from the dust of the ground in Bereshit 2:19, and Adam gave them names according to verse 20. But what about the fish (animals of the sea)? Are they also formed ...
8
votes
1answer
866 views

What is the reason for the specific items listed in Pirkei Avot 5:6 being created just before Shabbat?

Pirkei Avot chapter 5, mishnah 6 says: Ten things were created at twilight of Shabbat eve. These are: the mouth of the earth [that swallowed Korach]; the mouth of [Miriam's] well; the mouth of [...
8
votes
2answers
354 views

What does Judaism have to say about the origin of elements?

What does Judaism have to say about the origin of the elements? I mean chemical elements like hydrogen, oxygen, gold, sulfur, etc. Is this discussed at all?
8
votes
1answer
116 views

וְהִתְקִין לוֹ מִמֶּנּוּ בִּנְיַן עֲדֵי עַד Is the translation of מִמֶּנּוּ **His** very self or his very self?

The Koren Sacks siddur translates the 4th of the 7 wedding blessings as: אֲשֶׁר יָצַר אֶת הָאָדָם בְּצַלְמוֹ, בְּצֶלֶם דְּמוּת תַּבְנִיתוֹ, וְהִתְקִין לוֹ מִמֶּנּוּ בִּנְיַן עֲדֵי עַד: who ...
8
votes
3answers
412 views

Torah view on the Chicken or the Egg?

What is the Torah's viewpoint on the age old question whether the chicken or the egg was created first? Note: Although this article shows Rav Yehoshua Leib Diskin writes both fish and chicken eggs ...
7
votes
7answers
649 views

why create non kosher animals?

why did hashem create non kosher animals, was it to tempt us and see if we would control ourselves?
7
votes
1answer
726 views

Does Yeshayahu 43:10b / 43:13a imply HaShem was created?

I cannot read Hebrew and am struggling a great deal to understand Yeshayahu 43:10/43:13. In my English versions, these verse-parts seem very much to suggest that HaShem was Himself ‘formed’ at some ...
7
votes
2answers
296 views

When Did Hashem Create Angels

I always wondered when Hashem created angels because nowhere does it say in the Torah when Hashem created angels, only when Hashem created the world.
7
votes
1answer
159 views

Cicadas - once in 17 years

I was reading an article today regarding the Cicadas which appear once every 17 years. Is there any Sefarim that discuss this phenomenon? Also if they were created at the time the world was created, ...
7
votes
2answers
598 views

On the interpretation of Genesis 1: 1

I'm an Italian noahide. Here are some observations on Genesis 1: 1, about which I would very much like to know your opinion. 1 In most translations I have consulted, the verse is thus render:” In ...
7
votes
2answers
714 views

What were the arguments for and against man's creation?

The gemara in Eiruvin 13b teaches that for two and a half years there was a dispute between Beit Shammai and Beit Hillel - these said that it was better for man not to have been created than to have ...
7
votes
1answer
628 views

What Was The Source Of The Primordial Light On The First Day Of Creation

It says on the first day of creation in Genesis that there was light. On the fourth day of creation, the sun was created. So what was the source of the primordial light on the first day of creation?
7
votes
1answer
656 views

Rosh Hashana can't currently land on a Friday, but the first one did

The current fixed calendar works in such a way so that the first day of Rosh Hashana can never fall out on a Friday, but this is the very day on which the first Rosh Hashana fell! What gives?
7
votes
3answers
128 views

Why use language of לברוא in brachot?

The bracha over wine and grape juice says "בורא פרי העץ". The word בורא is also used in many of the other brachot over food and smells. My understanding is that the meaning of the verb-root ב.ר.א.&...
7
votes
1answer
157 views

What happened to the "D'mut"?

In Bereishit 1:26, Hashem says (all text and translation from the Chabad site's Judaica Press version) And God said, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness, וַיֹּאמֶר אֱלֹהִים נַעֲשֶׂה ...
7
votes
0answers
301 views

Which Rishonim viewed maaseh bereishit as an allegory?

I have often heard that many rishonim were comfortable with the idea that at least the first week of creation could be read allegorically, not literally. What are the specific sources that support ...
6
votes
5answers
5k views

What is the meaning of יוֹם (yowm) in Bereshit?

I've heard conflicting reports of how the creation days' יוֹם (yowm), in Bereshit are interpreted in the Jewish community. How do actual Hebrew scholars define day in Bereshit? Six 24 hour periods or ...
6
votes
2answers
812 views

Better for Man to Not have Been Created

The Talmud in Eruvin 13b concludes that it were better for a man not to have been created than to have been created. How can we understand this given that God is absolutely benevolent. Wouldn't it ...

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