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What do you guys make of Qur’an 95-97? I see two interesting things happening here.

The context of this passage is immediately after Moses returns to find the Hebrews worshipping the Golden Calf. In the Qur’an, the one who introduced the calf is named al Samiri, meaning, possibly, “the Sumerian”.

[95] (Then Moses turned to Samiri) and said, “O Samiri, what have you to say about the matter?”
[96] He replied, “I saw what the people did not see: so I took a handful of dust from the footprints of the Messenger, and sprinkled it (on the calf), for so did my soul prompt me.”
[97] Moses said, “Well, get away! now you shall have to say throughout your life: “Touch me not” And there is an appointed time for your reckoning which is inevitable. And just have a look at your god which you cherished so much: now We will burn it and shatter it and cast the ashes into the sea.”

I see two really interesting things going on here. The first is in 96 when al Samiri talks about sprinking dust on the calf. Early commentators, according to Maududi, held that it was the dust that made the calf start mooing. What I see here is that the calf is being animated by injecting it with a spirit, which is a common practice among occultists today. Is anyone aware of any practice of the ancient Hebrews or Sumerians, or anyone else from around then, that might relate to this?

Second, in 97, it looks like Moses is relegating al Samiri to a lifetime status of ritual impurity. To my understanding this kind of thing is no longer practiced, but was a long time ago, What exactly were the Jewish laws from back then regarding purity and touchability, and did they allow for that?

I am a Muslim, but, obviously, looking for Jewish answers.

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