Hebrew letters and numerals are matched by the numerological system is the real gematria meaning. This approach was created by Kabbalah (Jewish mysticism) practitioners and was influenced by Greek thought. It was used to analyze biblical passages.
Each Hebrew letter has a numerical equivalent in gematria, such as aleph = 1, bet = 2, etc. The numerical value of a word can then be determined by adding the individual letter values in it. Biblical commentators often use the numerical equivalency of words to support their claims. A commentator may connect two terms and the verses in which they appear in their numerical values are equivalent and use this to support more general conceptual assertions.
Gematria Meaning is A type of mysticism. The examination of Hebrew letters and their relationships to numbers is known as gematria in Jewish mysticism. The technique was employed to unearth the hidden meanings of Hebrew words. Important words could be systematically transformed into numbers, linked to other phrases with the same numerical value, and then used as comments on the original words. The Greek alphabet was also utilized in conjunction with this type of numerology.
The Gematria meaning of the Hebrew Alphabet
- 1 Aleph א
- 2 Bet ב
- 3 Gimel ג
- 4 Daleth ד
- 5 Heh ה
- 6 Vav ו
- 7 Zayin ז
- 8 Het ח
- 9 Tet ט
- 10 Yud י
- 20 Kaf כ
- 30 Lamed ל
- 40 Mem מ
- 50 Nun נ
- 60 Samech ס
- 70 Ayin ע
- 80 Peh פ
- 90 Tzady צ
- 100 Koof ק
- 200 Reish ר
- 300 Shin ש
- 400 Taf ת
- 500 Kaf (final) ך
- 600 Mem (final) ם
- 700 Nun (final) ן
- 800 Peh (final) ף
- 900 Tzady (final) ץ
Who Holds a Gematria Belief?
Although gematria was occasionally employed in the Talmud and Midrash, it was not a major theme in any of the writings of the Rabbis. Although they did not significantly rely on it, the rabbis occasionally used gematria to bolster their interpretation of the Bible. They had a lot more interest in using argumentation and logical reasoning to prove their points.
However, the Jewish mystical tradition known as Kabbalah is dependent on gematria. The kabbalistic cosmological system’s fundamental tenet is the conviction that God created the universe using the force of the Hebrew letters and their numerical values. In Kabbalah, the various names of God and their combinations have numerical values that are thought to carry strong energy.
The Core Texts of Gematria
The Greek philosopher Plato introduced the idea in his writings, and the word “gematria” is derived from the Greek “geometria.” It first appears in rabbinic writing in Rabbi Eliezer’s Baraita of the Thirty-two Rules, written in 200 CE. This text, which is now extinct save for citations, provided 32 rules for reading the Bible. Gematria was used in the 29th rule.
The first kabbalistic literature, Sefer Yetzirah, which is thought to have been authored in the second century CE, was the first to design a system of gematria. This text explores how God used the Hebrew alphabet to create the universe and how God’s name can take many different forms
It was thought that the mystic practitioner may use this information to channel the forces of creation. According to folklore, Sefer Yetzirah contains directions on how to make a golem, the legendary mud-built creature made famous by the Maharal of Prague in the 19th century.
The Hasidim of Ashkenaz, also known as the German Pietists—a group of rabbis who followed a mystical and austere branch of Judaism—used gematria in their mystical writings in the 1200s, not to be misunderstood with Hasidism, which emerged 500 years later. Abraham Abulafia of the Castilian branch of Kabbalah, whose meditation practices involved thinking about several names of God, was affected by their writings. The guidebook Pardes Rimonim (Garden of the Pomegranates), written in 1542 by Safed, Israel, kabbalist Moses Cordovero, contains numerous parts that develop and elucidate earlier gematria systems.
The 17th-century Sabbatean movement, whose adherents saw their leader Shabbatai Tzvi as the Messiah, and the 18th-century Hasidic movement expanded on the kabbalistic legacy by using gematria as a tool in their mystical literature.
Eminent instances of arguments based on the gematria
The reading of Genesis 14:14, which is found in the Baraita of the Thirty-two Rules and other Talmudic and Midrashic sources, is one well-known application of gematria. The 318 individuals that made up Abram’s household are mentioned in this passage.
Later in Genesis, God changes Abram’s name to Abraham. God took these men with him to thwart the forces that had just attacked his kinsman. The text implies that only Eliezer, not all 318 men, arrived with Abram because the word “Eliezer” (Abram’s servant) has a numerical equivalent of 318. Gematria is used in Hasidic literature called the Kedushat Levi to extrapolate meaning from this verse. This text notes that the Hebrew word “siach,” which means “speaking or chatting,” has a numerical value of 318. The passage makes the case that Abram’s victory over his adversaries was made possible by the force of uttering God’s holy name. In subsequent chapters of Genesis, God changes Abram’s name to Abraham.
This passage describes the 318 men that made up Abram’s household, whom he took with him. A lot of gematria concentrate on the different names of God and the powers of these names. The Gematria meaning of the word hateva is the same as the sum of the names Elohim and 86. (Nature). This analogy suggests that Elohim, as a contrast to the name YHVH, which ties to the celestial universe, alludes to the divine presence as it appears in the material world.
The Gematria Meaning In Kabbalah
The Hasidic Ashkenaz and communities close to them developed the Gematria Meaning specifically during the 12th and 13th centuries. While it’s probable that the legends surrounding the gematriot of the Holy Names and the angels stretch back further, they were only gathered and greatly extended within the time period mentioned.
Gematria Meaning is rarely used by mystics to generate original ideas; instead, the invention of the gematria, which acts as “an allusion *asmakhta,” almost invariably comes first. The Holy Names, which are unintelligible in and of themselves, and the names of angels, whose significance and unique aspect the German Hasidim sought to ascertain using gematria. Gematria was frequently used as a mnemonic.
The works of *Eleazar of Worms, whose gematriot is founded, at least in part, on the tradition of his masters, are the classic gematria works in this circle. Eleazar learned about the mystical prayers that might be invoked during the actual repetition of the phrases using gematria. Most of his commentaries on biblical books are built on this framework, including some that use gematria to link midrashic traditions with biblical words and others that use it to unlock the secrets of the realm of the *Merkabah (“fiery chariot”) and the angels.
However, skeptics have pointed out that gematria can be used, depending on the words and sentences one chooses to highlight and calculate, as “evidence” to support diametrically opposed beliefs. An effort to predict the 2016 US presidential election using the names of the candidates’ gematria served as a rather ironic demonstration of this. The article’s author demonstrated how this line of thinking might be applied just as readily to forecast which candidate would win. However, some people still find gematria to be appealing.
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