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Ru’ah Ha-Kodesh

רוח הקודש

lit. “the Holy Spirit” Although the phrase Ru’ah ha-Kodesh occurs in the Bible (cf. Ps 51:13 ; Isa 63:10), it’s specific connotation as divine inspiration is wholly post-biblical.
In rabbinic thought it is the spirit of prophecy which comes from G-d, a divine inspiration giving man an insight into the future and will of G-d. Traditionally the Pentateuch was given directly by G-d to Moses, but the other canonical writings were all produced under the inspiration of Ru’ah ha-Kodesh.
This the determination of what should be included as canonical scripture turns on whether or not a given work was composed with the aid of the Holy Spirit (see Tosef., Yad 2:14 ; Song R 1:1 no. 5).
This power was given to the prophets in unequal measure (Lev. R 15:2), and could be passed on to a disciple, Joshua inheriting it from Moses, and Elisha from Elijah (Deut. 34;9 ; II Kings 2:9-10).

Ru’ah ha-Kodesh
From the Encyclopaedia Judaica 14:365

There are a number of references to the cessation of the Ru’ah ha-Kodesh from Israel, some dating from the end of the first, some from the end of the second Temple (cf. Yoma 21b).

The Most signifcant passage for the central use of the term as prophetic inspiration is “When the last of the propheta Hggai, Zechariah, and Malahchi, died the Holy Spirit ceased from Israel” (Yoma 9b).

Apart from it’s function as prophetic the Holy Spirit also rest on charismatic or exceptionally holy individuals, who are not prophets in the accepted sense (cf. SER. 10:48).

They are thus possessed of an ability to divine the future (ER. 64b.)

When the rabbis were gathered in Jericho a divine voice announced to them that they were two amoung them who were worthy of Ru’ah ha-Kodesh (TJ,Hor.3:7; 48c).

The Holy Spirit is also promised to other categories, eg. those who teach the Torah in public (Song R. 1:1 no.8) those who study from pure motives (1 : Shemah; SEZ, 1), those who perform even one mitzvah in complete faith (Mekh. Be-Shallah, 2:6). The Midrash says: “All that the righteous do, they do with the power of Ru’ah ha-Kodesh” (Tanh. Va-Yehi: 13). Ru’ah ha-Kodesh may be attained by the saintly man, and be attained by the saintly man, and the spiritual stages toward it’s attainment are found in the Mishnah. Phinehas b. Jair says: Heedfulness leads to cleanliness, and cleanliness leads to purity, and purity leads to abstinence, and abstinence leads to holiness and holiness leads to fear of sin, and fear of sin leads to saintliness, and saintliness leads to [the gift of] Ru’ah ha-Kodesh.” (Sot. 9:15 end; see also Av. Zar 20b and TJ, Shab. 1:3, 3c for different versions).

A connection between the possession of Ru’ah ha-Kodesh and ecstasy, or religious joy, is found in the ceremony of water drawing, Simhat Bet ha-Shoevah, on the festival of Sukkot.

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