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Editor: Andrei A. Orlov
The essays collected in Jewish Roots of Eastern Christian Mysticism intend to honor Alexander Golitzin, a scholar known for his keen attention to the Jewish matrix of Eastern Orthodox spirituality. Following Golitzin's insights, this Festschrift explores influences of Jewish apocalypticism and mysticism on certain early and late Christian authors, including Irenaeus, Origen, Evagrius of Pontus, Pseudo-Dionysius, and Symeon the New Theologian. Special attention is given to Jewish theophanic traditions regarding the beatific vision of the divine Glory (Kavod), which profoundly shaped Eastern Christian theology and liturgy. This volume demonstrates that recent developments in the study of apocalyptic literature, the Qumran Scrolls, Gnosticism, and later Jewish mysticism throw new and welcome light on the sources and continuities of Orthodox theology, liturgy, and spirituality
Author: Andrei A. Orlov

The artice investigates the origins of the Shiccur Qomah tradition. This tradition depicts visionaries, Rabbi Ishmael and Rabbi Akiba, receiving from the supreme angel Metatron revelations of the «measurement of the body» (in Hebrew, Shiccur Qomah), an anthropomorphic description of the Deity together with the mystical names of its gigantic limbs. Although the majority of the evidence of the the Shiccur Qomah tradition survived in late Jewish writings, Gershom Scholem argued that the beginning of Shiccur Qomah speculations can be found in 2 (Slavonic) Enoch where one can find the description of the appearance of the Lord as a terrifying extent analogous to the human form. The article develops Scholem's hypothesis arguing that the traditions about the divine body in 2 Enoch were shaped by the early Adamic traditions. The portrayal of the prelapsarian Adam found in the longer recension of 2 Enoch reveals fascinating similarities to the later Shiccur Qomah descriptions.

In: Scrinium
Author: Andrei A. Orlov

Enoch-Metatron's liturgical office plays a prominent role in the Merkabah lore, yet this tradition appears to be absent in early Enochic texts, including the compositions collected in 1 Enoch, Jubilees, Genesis Apocryphon and the Book of Giants. Despite this apparent absence, this study argues that the roots of Enoch-Metatron's liturgical imagery can be traced to the Second Temple Enochic lore, namely, to 2 Enoch, the Jewish apocalypse, apparently written in the first century CE. Some traditions found in this text appear to serve as the initial background for the developments of the future liturgical role of Enoch-Metatron as the celestial choirmaster. Scholars have previously noted that Enoch's figure portrayed in the various sections of 2 Enoch appears to be more complex than in the early Enochic tractates of 1 Enoch. For the first time, the Enochic tradition seeks to depict Enoch, not simply as a human taken to heaven and transformed into an angel, but as a celestial being exalted above the angelic world. In this attempt, one may find the origins of another image of Enoch, very different from the early Enochic literature, which was developed much later in Merkabah mysticism — the concept of the supreme angel Metatron, the «Prince of the Presence». The attestation of the seventh antediluvian patriarch as the celestial liturgical director in 2 Enoch gives additional weight to this hypothesis about the transitionary nature of the Slavonic account which guides the old pseudepigraphical traditions into the new mystical dimension. In this respect the tradition found in 2 Enoch represents an important step towards defining and shaping Enoch-Metatron's liturgical office in its transition to his new role as the celestial choirmaster. It is also significant that the beginning of Enoch's liturgical functions in 2 Enoch is conflat¬ed there with the development of his new titles-offices as the Youth and the Servant of the Divine Presence which will later play a prominent role in the Merkabah passages pertaining to Metatron's liturgical actions.

In: Scrinium
Author: Andrei A. Orlov

The study investigates the imagery of the heavenly counterpart of the visionary found in the Slavonic Ladder of Jacob. The text describes Jacob's dream in which the patriarch sees the celestial «Face» as the fiery anthropomorphic extent, which serves as the embodiment of the Deity. This fiery extent, labeled in some biblical and intertestamental texts as the «Face», is related to the glorious celestial entity known in theophanic traditions as God's Kavod. It appears that in the Ladder of Jacob the fiery Face not only embodies God's Glory but also seems to represent the heavenly counterpart of Jacob. The bust of fire, labeled in the Ladder as the Face, can be associated with the heavenly «image» of Jacob engraved on the Throne of Glory. The traditions about the heavenly «image» of Jacob found in the Slavonic Ladder of Jacob demonstrate some similarities to the traditions found in several targumic texts which entertain the idea of the heavenly twin of Jacob.

In: Scrinium
Author: Andrei A. Orlov

The article examines the Enochic background of the imagery of the Divine Face found in Exodus 33. The study argues that Ex 33 could actually contain the original Enochic motif. In Mesopotamian traditions, a prototype of Enoch, Enmeduranki, is portrayed as a «translated» figure, the one who had access to the glorious presence/face of the solar deity. The implicit link between the Enochic account of the divine Presence and the Mosaic account of the divine panim found in Ex 33 may well reflect the conceptual world of the priestly editor, who often «has expressed his acquaintance with a fairly broad range of Mesopotamian traditions in remarkably few words».

In: Scrinium
Author: Andrei A. Orlov

Adam's story occupies a prominent place in 2 Slavonic (Apocalypse of) Enoch. The traditions pertaining to the first human can be found in all the sections of the book. In these materials Adam is depicted as a glorious angelic being, predestined by God to be the ruler of the earth, but falling short of God's expectations. The article argues that the extensive presence of Adamic materials in 2 Enoch has a polemical nature since it is related to the long-lasting competition between Adamic and Enochic traditions. The analysis shows that the polemics taking place in 2 Enoch involve a rewriting of «original» Adamic motifs and themes when the details of Adam's «story» are transferred to a new «hero», the seventh antediluvian patriarch. The features of Adam's story, his roles and offices, are used in 2 Enoch as the building blocks for creating the new, celestial identity of the elevated Enoch. In the course of these polemical appropriations, the elevated angelic status of the prelapsarian Adam, his luminosity, his wisdom, and his special roles as the king of the earth and the steward of all earthly creatures are transferred to the new occupant of the celestial realm, the patriarch Enoch, who, near the Lord's throne, is transformed into one of the glorious ones initiated into the highest mysteries by the Lord, becomes the «manager of the arrangements on the earth», and writes down «everything that nourished» on it. The investigation of Adamic polemics in 2 Enoch demonstrates that a number of important passages associated with early Jewish mysticism, such as the motif of the Divine Face in chapters 22 and 39, the future prominent role of Enoch-Metatron as the governing power on the earth, and his title «Youth», belong to the primary text, since they play a decisive role in Adamic polemics of the Slavonic apocalypse.

In: Scrinium
Author: Andrei A. Orlov

The study investigates the ritual of anointing with the oil of the resurrection found in 2 Enoch. 2 Enoch 22:9 portrays the archangel Michael anointing Enoch with delightful oil, the ointment of glory which transforms the patriarch into a celestial creature. According to some rabbinic materials this oil of the resurrection which is responsible for the change of human mortal nature into the glorious state of a celestial being will come at the eschatological time from the head of the Deity.

In: Scrinium
Author: Andrei A. Orlov

The study examines the mysterious Slavonic term prometaya found in 2 Enoch 34 arguing that it could represent a very early, rudimentary form of the name «Metatron»

In: Scrinium
Author: Andrei A. Orlov

The article explores the imagery of the celestial roles and titles of Enoch-Metatron in 2 Enoch. The analysis of the celestial roles and titles shows that the transition from the figure of patriarch Enoch to the figure of angel Metatron occurred already in 2 (Slavonic) Enoch, a Jewish work traditionally dated to the first century CE.

In: Scrinium
Author: Andrei A. Orlov

The article investigates the «two stelae» tradition found in Josephus' Jewish Antiquities and other accounts. The analysis of these accounts shows that they contain traces of the Enochic traditions. It appears that these «two stelae» stories interact with the Enochic traditions by way of attributing various Enochic roles to the alleged «authors» of the antediluvian stelae. The attribution involves substantial rewriting of the original Enochic motifs and themes. The analysis also shows that the interaction of «two stelae» stories with Enochic traditions seems to involve some details of the Watchers/Giants' story.

In: Scrinium