Monday, January 09, 2017
Well then, what is it?
I have sought to demonstrate that, according to the mīs pî pīt pî, the creation of a divine statue was not primarily a ritual of purification, although clearly purity was of utmost concern. Nor was it modeled exclusively on the analogy of human procreation and birth. Rather, the creation of the divine image was achieved through two complementary and requisite processes. The image was born through ritual means, as Ebeling, Jacobsen, and Boden have recognized, but it was also physically constructed from wood, precious metals, and gemstones. Manufacture did not preclude birth, nor did birth preclude manufacture. The two modes of creation functioned concurrently to produce not a representation of the divine but, as indicated by the birthing language and imagery in the pīt pî, as well as by the animation of the image’s sensory organs and the offerings of food, drink, clothing, and shelter (in the temple), what was considered to be a physical, living manifestation of an otherwise invisible reality.—The "Image of God" in the Garden of Eden, pages 84–85 (emphasis original)