By Patrick Laude (auth.)
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Additional resources for Divine Play, Sacred Laughter, and Spiritual Understanding
Let us note, however, that al-Khidr embodies an “enlightened” demiurgic perspective, in the sense that he remains fully aware of God’s will as it is manifested to him: he is a servant (‘abd) in a full and direct sense, and not only a passive and unconscious instrument of God’s will. A few additional remarks are in order concerning the implications of the demiurgic process as illustrated in the Surah of the Cave. We should notice, first, that the narrative introduces Moses and his servant at the point where the former has just lost his fish at the meeting place of the two seas.
As woman proceeds from the “separation” of one of Adam’s ribs, we are given to think that this stage in the creation of man corresponds to a lower step in the process that spans from God’s archetypes to manifested forms. Still, this fragmentation is not as much in the mode of a division as it expresses, positively, a differentiation. At a further stage though, which is expressed by the curses upon woman and man following the transgression, differentiation is turned into a clear sense of division, lack, suffering, and evil.
This interpretation can be supported by two main factors, one having to do with the content of the narrative concerning the creative act as such, the other related to the Hebrew divine onomatology that is involved in these passages. First, one cannot but be struck by the difference between God’s creation of man as a result of His Word (“And God said . ”) and His Will (“Let us make man . ” If one is to read these two verses without even taking into account their respective contexts one may readily admit to their alluding to two different stages in the same process of creation.
Divine Play, Sacred Laughter, and Spiritual Understanding by Patrick Laude (auth.)