974 Generations / Books / Creation / Erev Rav / Kabbalah / Science

974 Generations

B”H
The reason why I am writing a little less at the moment is very simple: I started going through all my notes, hundreds of copies from various sources as well as through all my unread books. Chassidic history, politics, Kabbalah, Torah, Halacha, Mussar, you name it. I have been collecting lots of material for new articles. It is a lot of work and Judaism is endless anyway. There is no Jew in this world who can say that he studied everything. 🙂
At the moment, I am going through a further book written by Rabbi Zamir Cohen. Most of his books are only in Hebrew but one has been translated into English. What Rabbi Cohen does is giving fantastic information on scientific subjects. How Judaism responds to science and whether there is a contradiction. Furthermore, he writes about dinosaurs, evolution, creation, health and all kinds of subjects. I love his books because he also provides great sources. There is so much to learn and it seems endless.
In one of his books he writes about the famous 974 generations which were created before G – d created our world. There is a lot of Jewish kabbalistic literature on the subject.
The whole idea is based on a Pasuk in Tehillim (Psalms) and Talmud Chagigah. I am going to write about the subject in length a little later. According to Talmud Chagigah, these 974 generations were created spiritually. Meaning, only souls. And, as far as I understood, these souls have been placed in different generations since Adam HaRishon. For instance, the generation of Enosh, the generation of the Flood, the people of Sodom or the generation in Egypt and the Exodus. The main goal was a Tikun (soul rectification) for these souls but it went wrong over and over again.
However, in one of his books, Rabbi Zamir Cohen quotes a lot from the Midrash Rabbah and, according to him, the 974 generations were actually people living before our world was created. They were evil and got destroyed. I know that there are opinions like that. G – d created many worlds and destroyed them until He, eventually created our world.
Is it only me getting confused here ? Once, the generations were created but only their souls existed. According to a second opinion, previous worlds did exist and got destroyed.
What Talmud Chagigah also teaches us is the prohibition of investigating what happened before the creation of our world. There is not much to investigate anyway, as we simply don’t know. Scientist think they know everything but who can tell what happened before the Big Bang.
All different opinions make it very hard to write about the 974 generations. There is no other choice but quoting from a lot of sources but don’t expect any definite answer. 🙂
I am reading all this stuff but I don’t get excited. There are people who easily freak out with such kabbalistic ideas. Maybe I am too old but I find it much more important working on myself and improving a little instead of flying through different worlds. 🙂
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8 thoughts on “974 Generations

  1. b-h shalom miriam your writing intrigued and baffled me so i did some research because i had never heard before these past souls, i came across this link and read it and i was left with a million questions,,i dont know if you can answer them i will also ask a tabbi i know,,but if all souls since moshe,,(may he be blessed) are these 974 souls that came back,,does that literally mean every jew from the time of moshe is one of these souls??does that mean in the past my soul did something that now i have to rectify?? and is the same for all my children as well??maybe im confused,,i dont know…toda in shalom sophia
    http://www.torah.org/learning/perceptions/5761/vayakhel.html

  2. B”H

    Hi Sophia,

    The 974 souls are not in all of us. As a matter of fact, the Arizal (Rabbi Yitzchak Luria) states that Adam HaRishon included most souls and many of them were reincarnated into the following generations. At the same time, new souls were created.

    So, there are those souls from Adam HaRishon, new souls and those of the 974 generations. However, nobody can say for sure who has what kind of a soul.

    There are different kinds of soul but it could be that you are or I am or whoever is a reincarnation. Who knows ? I just advise you not to go to these modern self – appointed Kabbalists or healers who tell you all kinds of “crap”. Today, nobody is able to tell you details about the origin of your soul !!! So, don’t pay any money to anyone. 🙂

    In case you are a reincarnation, your children won’t be automatically your reincarnation. One cannot inherit a reincarnation from a parent.

    Generally speaking, the 974 generations are rather a kabbalistic subject. They are mentioned in the Talmud but we mostly find references to them in kabbalistic literature.

    And, as I said before, I wouldn’t bother too much thinking about whether I am reincarnated or not. The truth is that you don’t know your Tikun or task anyway. The only thing you can do is leading a, more or less, Torah – life. Maybe not necessarily frum but in an honest way.

    • b-h toda miriam,,i did ask raabi pauli about this he agrees with you that it is a kabbalistic notion but if it is mentioned in the talmud,,and lets say we disregard any kabbalistic refrences,,then we must conclude that it must be somewhere in a layer of the torah,,how else could the sages draw from this if it werent?? i agree that since moshe new souls have been created,,because it wouldnt make sense that all the 974 were in every person of generation since moshe…i was thinking that in the thousandth generation that 974 souls were implanted in certain bodies,,that that soul will only attach atself to that body when moshiac comes,,case in point as an example hitler,,he could have had one of the souls mentioned that by free will decided to go by the way of evil instead of good,,and that one of the good souls could have been in a tzaddik that we do not know who it is,,maybe someone like the rebbe??just a hypothosis i had,,i want to find something in the torah,,a layer to uncover that might be in refrence to this subject,,as we know all things are in the torah from the begining of time created,,toda miriam

  3. B”H

    @ Sophia

    The 974 Generations (also called the EREV RAV – Mixed Multitude) are totally kabbalistic. Meaning, they are extensively discussed in kabbalistic literature whereas other Jewish literature rather refers to these souls as the Erev Rav.

    There is an idea that the 974 generation souls were already rectified. Other say NO.

    I am going to write further articles on the subject but little by little. Otherwise it would be too confusing and people tend to get strange ideas. 🙂

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