Kabbalah has Six Genders

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  •  Zachar/זָכָר: This term is derived from the word for a pointy sword and refers to a phallus. It is usually translated as “male” in English.

  • Nekeivah/נְקֵבָה: This term is derived from the word for a crevice and probably refers to a vaginal opening. It is usually translated as “female” in English.

 

  • Androgynos/אַנְדְּרוֹגִינוֹס: A person who has both “male” and “female” sexual characteristics. 149 references in Mishna and Talmud (1st-8th Centuries CE); 350 in classical midrash and Jewish law codes (2nd -16th Centuries CE).

 

  • Tumtum/ טֻומְטוּם A person whose sexual characteristics are indeterminate or obscured. 181 references in Mishna and Talmud; 335 in classical midrash and Jewish law codes.

 

  • Ay’lonit/איילונית: A person who is identified as “female” at birth but develops “male” characteristics at puberty and is infertile. 80 references in Mishna and Talmud; 40 in classical midrash and Jewish law codes.

 

  • Saris/סריס: A person who is identified as “male” at birth but develops “female” characteristics as puberty and/or is lacking a penis. A saris can be “naturally” a saris (saris hamah), or become one through human intervention (saris adam). 156 references in mishna and Talmud; 379 in classical midrash and Jewish law codes.

 

Further reading: http://www.sojourngsd.org/blog/sixgenders

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