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Tajallt wa-Ru'ya: A Study of Anthropomorphic Theophany and Visio Dei in the Hebrew Bible, the Qur'an and Early Sunni Islam by W. Wesley Williams A dissertation submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy (Near Eastern Studies) in The University of Michigan 2008 Doctoral Committee: Professor Sherman A. Jackson, Chair Professor Juan R. Cole Professor Alexander D. Knysh Associate Professor Brian B. Schmidt © W. Wesley Williams 2008 ‘All Rights Reserved Acknowledgements First, I must acknowledge and thank God, without whom I could have never completed this long and difficult journey. My thanks to Professor Alexander (Sasha) Knysh ‘who, when I felt overwhelmed early in this process and ready to quite, he encouraged me to continue on, My thanks to Professor Sherman Jackson, my advisor and in many ways my ‘mentor. Thank you for your time and guidance. Thanks to my Committee, Professors Sherman A. Jackson, Alexander Knysh, Juan R, Cole and Brian B. Schmidt, To Professor Gary Beckman, Margaret Casazza, Angela Beskow, and all of the staff and faculty at the Department of Near Eastern Studies who were in any way involved in this process with me: thank you for your patient assistance. To Douglas Keasal for all of the much needed financial support he helped me secure: thanks a million, A special thanks to Roger Doster. Quite frankly without your efforts I would not have entered the program, and without your continued efforts I would not have made it through ‘Thank you, thank you, thank you. A special thanks also to Victoria Bells for your great sacrifices. I will always be mindful of them and appreciative of you for them. 1 don’t think any one has willingly sacrificed for this cause as much as has Laurita ‘Thomas, my blessed Mother. Ma, what can I say? Thank you a million times could never adequately convey my gratitude. I love you infinitely. To all of my family: Aunti (Eva), Moe, Courtney, Jaci, Charita, Aunt Charlene, Nanna, Aunt Janet and Uncle GJ, Aunt Denise and Uncle Mike, Paul, DaShanne: without yonr help with childcare, a daughter's hair, and numerous other maiters, this Dad could not have pulled this off. Thank you. To my little sparrows, Ava and Islam: thank you babies. You too have sacrificed so much. I am so sorry iT failed to do some of the things that maybe could have minimized those sacrifices. To Leslie Ann Williams and Dorthea Breckenridge: Ma, Grandma, [ove you and I miss you,