Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The Name Elohim in Practical Kabbalah - Part 3

The tradition of representing the Tetragrammaton with , often includes a semi-circle drawn around the three glyphs to indicate the letter Bet as a “crown.” The gematria of the three Yods is 30. Add to this the value of the Bet-Crown [2], and we arrive again at a total of 32. The construct of three Yods and Bet-Crown are understood to refer to:
1. the Divine Glory (Kavod) which is the Torah. In many primary texts we are informed that the concepts of Lev (Heart) and Kavod (Glory) refer to the Torah, because the numerical values of the terms in question add up to thirty-two which pertains to the first and last letters of the Torah. These two letters also jointly form the very concept (heart) which expresses the “Glory of God” in this world. Otherwise it is indicated that the term Kavod appears five times in Psalm 24, which is a reference to the five books comprising the Torah. Thus “there is no glory but the Torah (’ein kavod ’ela torah)”;
2. the “Name of Redemption,” which according to an anonymous 13th century “Commentary on Psalms,” was painted by the ancient Israelites with blood on the doorposts and lintel of their homes on the eve of the exodus from Egypt (Exodus 12:7), in order to avert the attention of the avenging “Angel of Death.” Each of the three drops of blood is said to have been in the shape of a Yod. Likewise, Simeon bar Samuel writes in Adam Sichli: “The Holy One, blessed be He, transmitted this name of the three yods to Moses our master, peace be upon him, in Egypt when He told him to place a drop of blood on the two doorposts and the lintel. The pious one, may the memory of the righteous be for a blessing, said that the three yods should be written one next to the other.”
Here we see a practical application of the “Thirty-two” — three Yods (drops of blood) = 30 + Bet-House (door posts and lintel) = 2 totalling 32;
3. the three Yods respectively found in the first words of the three verses of Exodus 14:19-21va-Yisa, va-Yavo and va-Yet . These three verses tell of “pillars of cloud and fire” which protected and guided the Israelites. As each of these verses comprises exactly seventy-two letters, these were the ones from which the “Name of Seventy-two Names” is derived. Here we see connections made between this Divine Name, the tradition of the “three Yods,” Kavod, Torah, and divine guidance. In fact, one of the “Names” (number 22) within the “Name of Seventy-two Names” is written YYY (), which is the very one we have been considering here. That is why it is understood that the “three Yods and the crown like a bet” represents both the Ineffable Name and the “Name of Seventy-two Names”;
4. the first words of the three verses comprising the “Priestly Blessing” in Numbers 6:24-28, reading Yevarech’cha, Ya’er, and Yisa .
The “blessing” itself is absolutely magnificent:
Y’varech’cha YHVH v’yishm’recha
Ya’eir YHVH panav eilecha vichuneka
Yisa YHVH panav eilecha v’yasem l’cha shalom
YHVH bless thee, and keep thee,
YHVH make His face to shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee,
YHVH lift up His countenance upon thee, and give thee peace;
5. the prayer ha-yom harat olam ha-yom ya’amid mishpat which follows each blast of the shofar (ram’s horn) on Rosh ha-Shanah. This prayer comprises exactly thirty-two words, which Eleazar of Worms informed us correspond “to the thirty-two paths by means of which the world was created.....”; and
6. the ten Sefirot, ten Ma’amarot (creative words) and the ten Dibberot (commandments). Each of these groupings represent one Yod whose numerical value is ten, and all of which is encompassed by the “Kingdom of God” (“House of the Lord”). Sefirot/Ma’amarot/Dibberot = 30 + Bet (house) = 2 and the total is again 32.
(more to follow)

No comments: