The bible is not nominalist: Adam makes the names, but God makes the categories. (Adam naming the animals, English miniature, XIIIth century.)

The bible is not nominalist: Adam makes the names, but God makes the categories. (Adam naming the animals, English miniature, XIIIth century.)

Solomon Molkho

Solomon Molkho was a Jewish prophet and a former Portuguese maranno. In his book Sefer ha-Mefo’ar (the picture is the cover of a 1709 edition in Amsterdam), he introduced some Christian allegorical elements into Jewish theology. Widely considered as a prophet, initiator of a messianic movement, burned at the stake in 1532 by the Inquisition for apostasy (in spite of his friendship with the pope Clement VII), he was reportedly seen alive a few days after his death, like several other Jewish messiahs.

The 5th volume of the History of the Jews by H. Graetz (PDF fac-simile), downloaded on the Gallica digital library, which is great when you know exactly what you want.

The 5th volume of the History of the Jews by H. Graetz (PDF fac-simile), downloaded on the Gallica digital library, which is great when you know exactly what you want.

Body and Soul

Sometimes the body feels like an awkward feeding implement for the brain, fitting like heavy winter clothes. I remember Raúl Ruiz writing somewhere, more casually, that the body is just a bag of shit hanging from the head (a whole philosophy of life summed up in a terse adage). I can’t help thinking that this feeling is behind some of the earliest mystical manifestations of the human mind (for example Genesis 3:21), and indeed the dream of a body-less consciousness is pervasive until the contemporary science-fiction writers. But it seems more and more difficult to believe that the separation between body and soul corresponds to any reality.