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34 SHOFAR Summer 1999 Vol. 17, No.4 Reflection Questions on the Narne G. David Schwartz What if the Name of God were unpronounceable not simply because we have forgotten the pronunciation of the Name of God but because the Name of God cannot have been remembered in any event? What if the Name did not designate God but was actually the presence of God? What if, in other words, the Name was so enlivened that it grew, changed, expanded with our growing, changing, expanding grasp? What if the Name were a multiplicity of designations for the One which can only be designated through multiplicity? What if human beings, so grand and wonderful in themselves, were, by comparison with the Name, so inferior, so uncomprehending that the Name itselfwas structured to increase as our perception of the designate of the Name increased? What ifthe Name represented the most accommodating symbiotic relationship between God (the Uncomprehensible God with the unpronounceable Name) and beings becoming? What if the Name of God were a designated structure, a multiplicity ofletters, by which we designate the structure of our cognition at any particular time of the One to be designated, the One to be Who is? What if, through the Name, we designate the designated, restructure the structure, define the undefinable? What if the Name were such that it was never forgotten but always designated to be remembered anew? What if the Name were not what we, who invent any number of titles and terms to define and characterize our perspective of God beneath, behind, and around the Name, what ifthis Name was not what we ought to call God but is the living Noun which calls us? What if God did not create us, but did designate us, as God did designate the Name, so that we might create ourselves through the Name? What if, as a designated structure, the Name were, like us, an assembly? What if the Name was not, was never, rapidly read as YHWH but read more slowly, historically slow, as slow as time itself(time vocalized) as a 'yod,' an 'he,' a 'vav,' and another 'he'? What ifthe assembly ofletters is not precisely in the right order? What if the assembly of the Name has no right order, cannot have a right order Questions on the Name 35 insofar as it orders us (not 'commands,' necessarily, but arranges)? What if this arrangement occurred thIough our perspective of the Name? What ifthe Name, composed of four letters, were not so much forgotten as scattered? What if the 'yod' stood not only for the first letter in the Name but also for a people? What if, as some Jews have claimed, the 'yod' stood for 'yehudi,' the Jews? What if Jews were, indeed, a part of the very Name of God? But is not the 'yod' only a part of the Name of God? What if the 'he' stood also for a people? What if the 'yod' stood for 'yehudi,' Jews, as part of God's very Name and the 'he' stood for a completely distinct people? What if the completely distinct peoples were, like the Jews, essential as a letter of God's Name? What if, without these people of the 'he' God could not, as it were, have a Name? What if, without a Name, God could not, as it were, be designated, pointed toward, praised by Name? What if God could not, so to speak, be God? What if God's Name would not, ifone could say such a thing, be the Name of God without these two like, but unlike, configurants as letters (a letter denoting a particular sancta and ritual, beliefs and ceremonies which enliven the Name through that particular letter)? What if the 'vav' repr~sented a third people? What if the 'he' and the 'vav' were essential ingredients in the growing, changing, developing Name, like God in being the designation of God, but unlike God in the way it depends on the designations we, as members of a letter, attribute to the 'yod,' the 'he,' and 'vav'? What if, failing to grow, develop, change, we fail the Name of God? What if, failing the...


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