This is the first article-length treatment of the famous rabbinic dictum These and those are the words of the living God, but the Law always follows Beit Hillel. The statement's significance lies in the innovative manner in which it negotiates the monistic and pluralistic tendencies within the rabbinic tradition. These and those ... first emerged in the late tannaitic or early amoraic period as a reworking of an earlier Tosefta text. The Yerushalmi, consistent with its overall monistic tendencies, cited this text only for its ruling in favor of Beit Hillel, marginalizing its affirmation that the teachings of Beit Shammai represent the words of the living God. The Bavli embraced both the pluralistic and monistic stances of These and those ... and further placed the declaration in a wider narrative context, imbuing it with social and ethical significance.
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
Copyright © Association for Jewish Studies 2021.