Genesis

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Genesis

(jĕn`əsĭs), 1st book of the Bible, first of the five books of the Law (the Pentateuch or Torah) ascribed by tradition to Moses. Beginning with two accounts of the creation and of humankind, the narrative relates the initial disobedience of the man and the woman and their consequent expulsion from God's garden. Next is an account of the ongoing effects of human sin. The narrative then focuses on the fortunes of Abraham and his immediate descendants Isaac and Jacob. The author of Genesis perceives God's call of Abraham and God's commitment to Abraham's descendants as the divine response to the disasters that have befallen the world earlier in Genesis. It is clear that the reader is dealing with stories that were originally unconnected and have a lengthy oral history. The stories preserve memories of ancient clan migrations. In these, mythic elements from the ancient Middle East can still be felt despite ubiquitous devotion to Yahweh, the God of Israel. In the Jacob cycle, the 12 patriarchs are presented as ancestors of the tribes of the later Israeli establishment; it is likely that this represents an importation of the later notion that Israel was one people of God, with a common heritage and ancestry. During the period of the tribal confederacy (12th–11th cent. B.C.), these stories coalesced to tell the story of one people. Moreover, the patriarchal cycles are not biographies. These characters personify Israel's historical experience (e.g., the Jacob/Esau cycle) and its venture in faith (e.g., the Abraham cycle). For views regarding its composition see Old TestamentOld Testament,
Christian name for the Hebrew Bible, which serves as the first division of the Christian Bible (see New Testament). The designations "Old" and "New" seem to have been adopted after c.A.D.
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 and higher criticismhigher criticism,
name given to a type of biblical criticism distinguished from textual or lower criticism. It seeks to interpret text of the Bible free from confessional and dogmatic theology.
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Bibliography

See studies by C. Westermann (3 vol., tr. 1984–86, 1987, and 1992), N. M. Sarna (1989), R. Alter (1996), and R. Hendel (2012).

Genesis

A NASA mission to obtain precise measurements of the abundances of the different elements and isotopes in the Sun and thereby gain more accurate information on its chemical makeup. The data gathered by Genesis would also advance scientists' understanding of the isotopic variations in meteorites, comets, lunar samples, and planetary atmospheres. The mission was set to collect samples of charged particles making up the solar wind and return them in a capsule to Earth. The aim was to provide a reservoir of solar material for scientific research and eliminate the need for future solar wind sample return missions. Part of NASA's Discovery program, Genesis was launched from Kennedy Space Center Aug. 8 2001 and took up a halo orbit around the Lagrangian point L1, far beyond the Earth's magnetic influence, in Nov. 2001. For 16 months, between Dec. 3 2001 and Apr. 2 2004, it gathered its samples of the solar wind by exposing thin wafers of silicon, gold and other ultrapure substances to the particle stream. Some 1020 particles, about half a milligram in mass, embedded themselves in these collecting materials. Genesis then became the first spacecraft to make a return journey from L1, flying by the Earth on May 2 2004 on its way to L2. The capsule that it ejected reached Earth on Sept. 8 2004 and entered the atmosphere to be picked up in mid-air by a helicopter in order to minimize contamination. Unfortunately, the capsule's parachute failed to open, and the helicopter could not retrieve it before it fell to earth in the Utah desert, hitting the ground at more than 300 km/h. The capsule was smashed, but miraculously several of the wafer-thin collectors survived intact but soiled. NASA scientists remained confident that the collectors could be cleaned and that, despite its misfortunes, the Genesis mission would yield useful scientific results.

Genesis

 

the first book of the Pentateuch, presenting the mythological conception of the ancient Hebrews about the creation of the universe, the earth, and mankind (in many ways closer to the conceptions of several other peoples of the ancient Near East), as well as the legendary ancient history of the Jews. The canonical Hebrew text of Genesis that has come down to us is divided into 50 chapters. The Russian name of the book (Bytie) is derived from its name in the Greek translation, genesis (kosmu), which literally means origin (of the world); in the original the book is called Bereshit (literally, in the beginning), from the opening word of the book. The version of the book that has come down to us was put together in the fifth century B.C.


Genesis

 

a philosophical category designating the emergence, origin, or coming into being of a developing phenomenon.

Originally the category of genesis was applied to notions of the origin of nature and being. This use of the category was first reflected in mythology (which regarded gods as the source of the origin of the cosmos) and later in philosophy and the concrete branches of knowledge, including the Kant-Laplace cosmogonal hypothesis and C. Darwin’s theory of the origin of species. In the 19th century the category of genesis began to play an important methodological role in knowledge. Hegel in particular makes it the foundation of the phenomenological analysis of consciousness, which aims to reveal the coming into being of science in general, that is, of knowledge (Soch., vol. 4, Moscow, 1959, p. 14). This category became especially important in the sciences studying the processes of development. This led to the establishment of the genetic method as a special method of knowledge and even to the appearance of special branches of science, such as genetic psychology and genetic sociology. Beginning with the late 19th century, the genetic method encountered the opposition of the structural and functional method of study of an object (as in the Swiss linguist F. de Saussure’s idea of synchronic and diachronic linguistics), as well as of functionalism and structuralism in anthropology and sociology (represented, among others, by B. Malinowski in Great Britain, C. Lévi-Strauss in France, and T. Parsons in the USA). In 20th-century philosophy, the problem of the genesis of the forms of consciousness has become highly important. Freudianism advocates the derivation of the various forms of consciousness from primary archetypes; neo-Kantianism makes the principle of creative genesis the foundation of its epistemological theory; and in phenomenology there is a distinction between static and genetic phenomenology.

Modern science recognizes the necessity of uniting the structural and synchronic with the genetic and diachronic study of objects. The recognition of this necessity is expressed both in the critique of the purely evolutionary interpretation of genesis, where the laws of the functioning of the object under investigation have no part in the analysis, and in the attempt to modify the structural and functional approach in order to make possible the study of the genesis and development of structures.

As early as the 19th century Marxism proposed a synthesis of the structural and functional and the genetic study of objects. Moreover, Marxism emphasized the specific character of each of these approaches. K. Marx’ analysis of bourgeois economics includes both a study of the structure of a fully developed society based on trade and finance and a study of the processes of the genesis of capital and its various forms.

REFERENCES

Marx, K. Kapital. In K. Marx and F. Engels, Soch., 2nd ed., vol. 23.
Marx, K. Teorii pribavochnoi stoimosti. Ibid., vol. 26, parts 1-3.
Asmus, V. F. Marks i burzhuaznyi istorizm. Moscow-Leningrad, 1933.
Grushin, B. A. Ocherki logiki istoricheskogo issledovaniia. Moscow, 1961.
Baldwin, J. M. Thought and Things: A Study of the Development and Meaning of Thought, or Genetic Logic, vols. 1-3. London, 1906-11.
Lewin, K. Der Begriff der Genese in Physik. Berlin, 1922.

V. P. OGURTSOV

Genesis

Old Testament book dealing with world’s creation. [O.T.: Genesis]

Genesis

first book of the Old Testament. [O.T.: Genesis]
See: Firsts

Genesis

the first book of the Old Testament recounting the events from the Creation of the world to the sojourning of the Israelites in Egypt