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October 29, 2008

Comments

Sean Cohen

A most delightful (and somewhat intense) novel pertaining to the life of Peleg, is "The Days of Peleg" by Jon Saboe.

Although it is decidedly historical fiction, it relies a great deal on Midrashim and (to a lesser extent) Sumerian mythologies and is totally compatible with the history found in Torah.

It has excellent reviews, and is also available on amazon, B&N, and local bookstores.

It has an official website here:

www.DaysOfPeleg.com

Highly recommended pertaining to the days of family and linguistic dispersion.

Sean

avakesh

I looked at this book. There are Christian references in it as well.

As science fiction is is passable. There are not too many midrashim, and what there is is "bottel" to the decidedly unmidrashic interpetation of those times.

Jon Saboe and response by avakesh

Dear Avakesh,

My name is Jon Saboe, and am the author of "The Days of Peleg" to which Mr. Cohen refers.

With all due respect, I’m not sure which book you read, but "The Days of Peleg" takes place almost two thousand years before the advent of Xtianity, and certainly contains no characters or doctrines (or histories) that are contrary to Torah. It uses ancient technologies and mythologies (and other "bottel") that contribute to the action, but certainly does not ultimately endorse any non-Torah world-views.

The promise of the coming Zeh-ra or Seed in Gen. 3:15 is the underlying theme beneath the action and adventure, based on the writings of Rabbi "Radak" David Kimchi (1160-1235), who claimed this verse referred to the Messiah. In his discussion of this verse in his commentary of the TANAKH he stated, "As thou wentest forth for the salvation of Thy people by the hand of Messiah the son of David, who shall wound the head of Satan, the head, the king and prince of the house of the wicked."

Also Midrash Rabbah 23 states, "Rabbi Tanchuma said in the name of Rabbi Samuel, Eve had respect to that Seed which is coming from another place. And who is this? This is the Messiah, the King."

I have received a great deal of positive feedback from the Jewish community who are usually delighted to see the ancient "pre-Jewish" world presented with the ultimate focus on G-d. (By pre-Jewish, I mean before Abram, since, of course, The Jewish defined by G-d as the descendants and nation of Abram in Genesis 12.) The cover art is by my Orthodox friend, J. A. Zucker.

The sub-plot of the book is how the truth of origins, found in the Torah, was almost destroyed by Sumerian mystics, and how the knowledge of G-d and his Creation was preserved by Hashem (using Shem and Peleg), and that a special nation was established that would spread HIS knowledge to both Gentile and Jew. This mission has never been rescinded to my knowledge.

However, the primary purpose of my book was to combat the secularism of our age by demonstrating the need for G-d; both as Creator and as the Source of Life.

This is a calling which I had hoped all theists (even as co-belligerents) could embrace.

Thank You,

Jon Saboe
DaysOfPeleg.com

For technical reasons I respond on the comment itself.

Thank you for your response. I purchased and read your book before commenting. You deserve credit for showing how science fiction can be merged with Biblical themes and I hope that others follow you in this. You have written a clever and engaging book that, while drawing on some midrashic material, is esentially foreign to the worldview and spirit of the Jewish tradition. My difficulty is not with a single reference but with the mentality portrayed in your work. The Zera reference is open about it being a means of salvation for the sins of the mankind, a Christian and not a Jewish idea and it reflects the sensibility and direction of the entire work. It is important to produce literature that counters our common enemies, which are agnosticism, ignorance and indifference to the great truths of the past. However, while we share a great deal, we also disagree on some things. Among them is the portrayal of the people of the Tower period as being, with the exception of Shem and his small band, competely unaware of God and history. It fits well with the concept of original sin but not with the view of Genesis as being not about the Fall but about the Election or Choseness.

Midrash Rabbah 23 is all about restoration and repair and not about "seed".

Again, I salute you for a good work. We are co-fighters in the war against secularism that is engulfing the world much as idolatry (not mysticism) engulfed it in the days of Peleg. Let us then stay each at our own station and perform our own task.

Avakesh

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