Let My People Know

Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz: “Intelligence is not touchable.”

“The reality of the world is nowadays apprehended in terms of electromagnetic fields.

But when I look at the world I do not see electromagnetic fields, nor do I perceive any diagrammatic representation of a mathematical formula.

What I see is, again, table, chair, arm, and leg.

Which is to say that my organs of perception do not see.

And it is known that our vision is limited to a narrow range of light-waves of a certain size.

From which we may conclude that we have to use our understanding to see that which our vision cannot ascertain.

In the same way, since the eyes of the body cannot hope ever to see the Holy One, Blessed be He, the problem is one of using the right means of explanation.

All too often the wrong tools are used to describe or illumine certain concepts, as for instance, to say that an intelligence is so complex that it cannot be touched.

It becomes absurd because intelligence is not touchable.

The two essences do not belong together.”

–Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz

From The Sustaining Utterance, p.32, by Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz