Teli baolam

 

Teli baolam

70 cm /100 cm
acrylic paint on wax paper, ink
text: Sefer Yetzirah 6:1,3

Vision of the cosmos based on a commentary to Sefer Yetzirah. Dragon – Teli – is found in the commentary of Rabbi Eliezer of Vorms. Teli is one of the most mysterious words in Sefer Yetzirah. Many authorities identify the Teli with “Pole Serpent”, mention in Job 26:13 and in Isaiah 27:1.

This Pole Serpent, which is identified with Leviathan, may then be seen as an imaginary creature from which the earth hangs. Thus, in an ancient mystical Midrash, we find that the world “hangs from a fin of the Leviathan.” The Pole Serpent is often associated with the constellation of Draco. This is not surprising, since Draco is very close to the North Pole. Indeed, around 4500 years ago, Thuban, a star in Draco’s tail, was the pole star. Other commentaries identify the Teli with the Milky Way. According to them, the Teli would be the axis of the galaxy, rather than that of the celestial sphere. Another important opinion is that of the practical Cabbalists. They write that Teli is actually a place under the firmament of Vilon, and that it is inhabited by humanoid beings, which deport themselves in holiness and purity like angels. The divine mysteries are revealed to those beings, and they have the authority to reveal this things to mortal humans.

(from Aryeh Kaplan’s commentary)