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  Comments on Auspicious Dates

  1. Super meaningful finds all. Nice too to bring in R’ Glazerson’s Torah codes, cutting edge proof of the Torah’s Divinity and with critical timely messages encoded deep in the holy text for us to see only now.

    In a previous comment I mentioned the Zohar that discusses Psalm 20, Lamenatza’ach Mizmor L’Dovid, with 70 words corresponding to the last 70 years of exile, starting from when the state of Israel is reborn, 5708-5778/1948-2018.

    It is interesting that in the last verse of this Psalm, Hashem Hoshiah Hamelech Ya’aneinu B’yom Korainu, “The King will answer us in the day we call,” the last word, Korainu, “we call,” which corresponds to this 70th year, 5778, in gematria is 357, and with 1 for the Kolel is 358, the equivalent of the word Moshiach.

    More specifically adding the Kolel could be derived from connection to previous word, B’yom, gematria 58, which is one more than (3)57; or from connection to the word Hashem at the beginning of the verse, One is Hashem; or from connection to the word Lamenatzeiah, “For the Victor,” at the beginning of the Psalm, since the ending is inserted in the beginning and the beginning in the ending.

    This Psalm is said daily in our prayers and in all times of need, and the last verse is recognized as being so special and so critical that it is inserted in many places in our prayers.

    The Psalm may be said to hint to La”g B’Omer, the 33rd day of the Omer, since the first letter of the first verse is a Lamed, 30, and the first verse has 3 words, i.e., 33. Also the gematria of the first word Lamenatzeiach is 218, hinting to the 2nd month 18th day, Iyar 18, which is Lag B’Omer. The year 2018 may also specifically correspond to this day, the 2nd month 18th day, today.

    As fixed in our morning prayers, after reciting this Psalm with last word Koreinu, with the Kolel equivalent to Moshiach, we immediately continue with the verse (Yeshaya 59:20) U’vo L’tziyom Goail, “And there shall come to Zion a Redeemer,” i.e., the Moshiach, and this too reflects the same theme and another way of specifically completing Kolel, especially since the word Goail, Redeemer, has an Alef, 1, the Kolel, in the middle, and letters Gimel Lamed, gematria 33, at the beginning and end, are exactly the same as in La”g B’Omer. The two words L’tziyon G’oail are also initials Lamed Gimel, 33, and the connecting first word of this verse U’vo, is gematria 9 = 3 x 3, again connected to La”g B’Omer, this special day.

    The more one looks the more wonders one can see.

    G’ood Yom Tov and L’echayim!

  2. Lag is gematria 33, and the gematria of B’Omer is 312, and since it is possible to view the 12 (of 312) as 1 + 2 = 3, so again the word B’Omer hints to 33. Also in small gematria Lag is 6 and the small gematria of B’Omer is 6, together the two words are 66 = 2 x 33, or alternatively, the total small gematria is 6 + 6 = 12, and again 1+2 = 3.

    Continuing regarding Psalm 20, the number 20 spelled out עשרים is gematria 620, the equivalent of Keser-Crown, the highest Sefira, and may allude to the 20 as in 20’18.

    There are 150 Psalms in the Tehillim, and 20/150 = 0.133333…, thus Psalm 20 again hints to Lag 33rd B’Omer.

    The word “Lamenatza’ach” at the beginning of Psalm 20 actually occurs 55 times in Tehillim, always at the beginning of a Psalm, and 55/150 = 0.366666…

    Psalm 20 is the 11th time the word Lamenatza’ach occurs, and 11/55 = 1/5 = 20% corresponding to Psalm 20.

    Interestingly 13333… + 36666… = 50, as in the number of days between Pesach and Shevuos associated with counting the Omer.

    The exact three word first verse למנצח מזמר לדוד Lamenatza’ach Mizmor L’Dovid occurs 9 times in the Psalms. Psalm 20 is the 3rd of these 9, i.e., 33%, thus again highlighting the specially connection to Lag 33rd B’Omer.

    The gematria of the first verse of Psalm 20, Lamenatza’ach Mizmor L’Dovid, is 555. It is possible this alludes to Hod she’b’Hod, since Hod is the 5th Sefirah starting and counting down from Chesed, as we do throughout the days of counting Sefirah. Counting from Malchus, from below to above, Hod is the 3rd Sefira, so Hod she’b’Hod viewed this way also alludes to 33.

    Previously I translated the word למנצח LameNatza’ach literally as “For the Victor.” Seemingly this is connected to the Sefirah of Netzach, and while the neighboring Sefiros of Netzach and Hod are often interchangeable, it is possible to say that the word’s preface, the letter Lamed, making it “For the Victor,” more specifically alludes to the Sefirah of Hod, since the idea of Hod is to give Praise to and for the Victor.

    The contextual meaning of LameNatza’ach as in standard translations is “For the Leader,” or “For the Choirmaster,” indicating at the beginning of the Pslam the instructions for the Conductor of the musical praises of G-d performed in the Temple. This idea of offering our recognition and praise to G-d is what the Sefirah of Hod is all about.

    (To be continued.)

  3. Thank you again for these wonderful insights. Staying connected to the big picture, 312 cubits is the dimension of the outer courtyard of the Future Holy Temple, may its presence be known now, and (312 and 33) for Lag B’Omer is 345, as in Moshe and Hashem, which I neglected to mention was encoded 3 times in the beginning of the Friday night Kiddush. As for the 150 Psalms, they correspond to the 150 days between Zot Channukah and Shavuot, so it’s also noteworthy that we starting counting the Omer .666, or 67%, of the way between these two holidays of maximum light, both connected to the sefira of Binah, using Psalm 67, and 67 is the gematria of Binah.

  4. It is also interesting that of the 70 words in Psalm 20, the 33rd word is נדג, Nidgol, “we will raise our banner,” and this hints to Lag B’Omer since the last two letters are Gimel Lamed, same as La”g, and the custom on Lag B’Omer is to parade around with our flag raised and the like.

    One of the meanings of the word formed by Gimel Lamed, גל, is an Uprising, a Heap, a Hill, and similarly the beginning of the word Nidgol, נד Naid, means a Heap, an Uprising, etc. Together then this word corresponds to a double heap, i.e., Hod she’b’Hod.

    In the prayer Ona B’Koach the word associated with Lag B’Omer is נהל, Nahail, meaning Guide or Lead, which is similar to the word Nidgol, both start with a letter Nun and end with a letter Lamed, the small gematria of which are 5 and 3 respectively, and both referring to the Sefirah of Hod, the 5th Sefirah down from Chesed and the 3rd Sefirah up from Malchus.

    The letter Heh in the middle of the word Nahail is the next letter adjacent to the Gimel and Dalit in the middle of the word Nidgol, and the range 3-5 again as explained above alludes to the Sefirah of Hod, with 345 being gematria לג בעומר La”g B’Omer and also משה Moshe [and also השם Hashem], also spiritually connected to R’ Shimon Bar Yochoi, and the idea of a Guide and Leader and Redeemer.

    Later in Psalm 20 we find that the 42nd word is Hashem, alluding to the 42 letter Name of G-d, and the 43rd word (the first of the last 28 of the total 70 words) is משיחו Meshicho – and this is the 2nd of the 10 times the noun Moshiach occurs in Tehillim (two more times the root Moshach is used as a verb). Just as Psalm 20 as explained above is the 11th of 55 times Lamenatza’ach occurs in Tehillim, i.e., 1/5 of the way through, so too this mention of Moshisch is 1/5 of the way through all the mentions of Moshiach in Tehillim. Again 1/5 is 20% and this comes out in Psalm 20.

    This increases and strengthens and gives Koach to the significance of the gematria of the last word of Psalm 20, Korainu, with the Kolel, being 358, the same as Moshiach – and by studying about this and by praying for this in a corresponding manner, with all the Koach we can, may we pave the way and merit to see the arrival of Hashem’s Moshiach very soon!

  5. Thank you again Ezra.

    [“Thank you,” תודה, Todah in Hebrew, has the same root as the Sefirah of הוד, Hod, and repeated Thanks is the idea of הוד שבהוד, Hod she’b’Hod.]

    There are some minor typos in my comments, as for example in the first line in my above comment I wrote נדג, leaving out the last letter Lamed, נדגל – Shgios Mi Yovin – hopefully anyway it is understood and the main ideas are correct.

    There are certainly even more depths to all of this as well, but it is necessary now to prepare for Shabbos.

    Sholom U’Brocha!

  6. In our counting of the Sefiras HaOmer, for each week of the seven weeks that we count, we refine and purify another one of the seven lower Sefiros, Chesed through Malchus.

    In this auspicious year there is a special synergy since the seven times seven day Sefiras HoOmer cycle coincides with the regular weekday Sunday through Shabbos cycle, which also expresses the pattern of the seven Sefiros Chesed through Malchus.

    Thus for example last week, Lag B’omer, Hod s’b’Hod, came out on Thursday, the 5th day of the week, a day that itself also corresponds to Hod, the 5th Sefirah from Chesed, and it is certain that the coincidence of the two cycles one with the other combines the strengths of each one to produce a spiritual resonance and an amplifying affect.

    Last week we focused on the Sefirah of Hod, this week the focus is on Yesod, and the next week the focus will be on Malchus, starting from Chesed s’b’Malchus, on Sunday, 28th of Iyar, 2/28/5778, the 43rd day of the Omer, 5/13/2018 on the secular calendar.

    There are interesting patterns in these dates, including that the numbers of Hebrew date 2/28 can allude to 22-8, and when 5 (Hod) is added to these two consecutive 2s one gets 77, thus when taken together there is a resonance to the numbers for the year, 5-77-8. For the secular date one can also see that by adding the 2 numbers, the 5 for the month and the 13 for the day, one gets 18, which resonates with the number of the year, 20-18.

    Be that as it may, on this upcoming auspicious day, on Sunday, one week from today, Israel and good people all over the world will be giving special thanks to G-d and celebrating Yom Yerushalayim, Jerusalem Day, with all of the spiritual and physical power and might that this entails.

    As stated above in a previous comment, the Sefirah of Hod is all about the idea of offering our recognition and praise to G-d, and Hod also broadly includes all sorts of expressions of acknowledgement and thanks, and also admission of mistakes and resolution to make amends.

    The theme of Hod is inherent and evident in the name and the events in the life of the Biblical Yehudah, i.e., Ye-Hod-ah, who was the ancestor and model for Dovid and for Moshiach Ben Dovid, since the attribute of Hod is so critical and essential in the Divine Plan — though of course the relationship and interaction between all of the 10 Sefiros is also necessary and essential for the unfolding of the entire Divine Plan. It is clear though that the way to Malchus, Kingdom, has to be founded on Hod, or in other words, Hod is an important Yesod for Malchus.

    Bli Neder at my next opportunity I would like add a bit more explanation to this and to some other previous comments.

  7. In continuation to what I wrote regarding Psalm 20, Lamenatza’ach Mizmor L’Dovid, with 70 words corresponding to the last 70 years of exile, starting from when the state of Israel is reborn, 5708-5778/1948-2018:

    It is interesting that this Psalm has 10 verses, corresponding to the 10 Sefiros, Keser through Malchus, all combined into one. The first verse Lamenatza’ach represents Kesser, Crown, and the last verse, Hashem Hoshiah Hamelech Ya’aneinu B’yom Korainu, “The King will answer us in the day we call,” represents Malchus, Kingship. Further, as was said, the last word, Korainu, “we call,” corresponds to this, the 70th year since the founding of the modern state of Israel, and with the Kolel, is gematria is 358, like Moshiach, the representative of Hashem’s Malchus in the world.

    As noted previously this verse Hashem Hoshiah Hamelech Ya’aneinu B’yom Korainu is also recited a number of times in our daily prayers. One of these is in the morning service at the end of the Yehi Chovod prayer, which follows in between the daily recitation of Mizmor L’Sodoh, Psalm 100 (which is 2/3 or 66.6% through the 150 Psalms of Tehillim), and the Ashrei-Tehilah L’Dovid and the Halluya prayers (Psalms 145-150, the conclusion of the final 1/3 of Tehillim).

    The prayer Yehi Chovod, as explained in a note in the Artscroll Siddur, is “a collection of verses, primarily from psalms, that revolves around two themes: the sovereignty of G-d and the role of Israel. Central to Tefilah (prayer) and to the purpose of creation is Malchus Shomayim, the Kingship of Heaven, which means that every being exists as part of G-d’s plan and is dedicated to His service.”

    In particular, the Yehi Chovod prayer is a composite of 18 verses, corresponding to the Amidah, the Standing Prayer, also known as the Shmoneh Esrei, the 18 Benedictions.

    Yet another note in the Artscroll Sidur, on the 8th of these 18 verses, “Hashem was King, Hashem is King, Hashem shall be King forever and ever,” explains that “This is one of the most familiar verses in the entire liturgy, but, surprisingly enough, it is not found in Scripture. Rather, each phrase comes from a different part of Scripture. In combination, the three phrases express the eternity of G-d’s reign.”

    It comes out, since one verse is actually itself a composite of 3 verses, that the Yehi Chovod prayer is really a composite of 20 different verses. Similarly the Shmonah Esrei has an extra 19th blessing, V’lamalshinim, that was added against the Heretics, and also has a 20th section, Elokai Netzor Leshoni Ma’rah, that is added at the very end. Thus the Yehi Chovod prayer and the Amidah hint to both numbers 20 and 18, and therefore they also hint to this year 20-18.

    Returning now to the last verse and the last word Koreinu, both of Psalm 20 and of the Yehi Chovod prayer, immediately after saying this as set in the order of the morning prayers we continue with the recitation of the Ashrei Prayer. Previously I explained a number of ways to connect the word Koreinu with 1for the Kolel to bring the gematria to 358, Moshiach. Another way would be to connect it to the word משיחו, Meshicho, which as I wrote is the 43rd word in Psalm 20, the first of the last 28 words. Another way would be to connect it to this very next letter א, Alef, gematria 1, at the beginning of the word and Prayer אשרי, Ashrei.

    One of the points I want to make out of all this is that it is not just the Ano B’Koach prayer that is effective as a meditation to create a strong connection to Hashem, it is essentially the same for every one of our prayers, and every chapter of Torah we study, and for every Mitzvah we do. They are all infused with Divine Names and they all provide us with means to connect to Hashem and His Blessings. Literally libraries full of books have been written and can still be written without end about each of them.

    (To be continued.)

  8. In a comment above you wrote “…345, as in Moshe and Hashem, which I neglected to mention was encoded 3 times in the beginning of the Friday night Kiddush.” I see some encoding of both the name Moshe and the Name Hashem, but I’m not sure if what I see is what you intended. Could you explain that a bit more?

  9. Thank you for all the recent comments. In YoM HShishi. In H’ShMym. In B’yoM HSheviyi. There is also a 4th and 5th times in B’yoM HSheviyi again and in yoM HSheviyi

  10. That’s what I thought you meant, the rearranged but consecutive letters Mem Shin Heh, for spelling either Moshe or Hashem. i saw more than 3 instances, and as you now say there are 5, so I wasn’t sure, and also because I thought you might mean encoding by equal distant skipping like the nice encoding of Yisroel in every 7th letter, which is even nicer because it connects Yisroel to he holiness of Shabbos, the 7th day, the theme of the plain text of the Scripture.

    Incidentally although not encoded in this text this way, Moshe himself is also associated with the number 7 and Shabbos, since he is the 7th generation (Malchus) from Avrohom (Chesed).

  11. As noted before, the number 20 when spelled out in Hebrew, עשרים, Esrim, is gematria 620, just like the word כתר, Kesser, Crown. You have also mentioned this several times and given several great hints connected with this number, not all of which I have read yet, or perhaps I have read but don’t remember at the present time, so forgive me if you covered some of this, and anyway repetition of some of the previously mentioned ideas can also be beneficial.

    At any rate it is interesting to point out that the number 620 is also connected to the number 20 since 20 x 31 = 620, with 31 being one of the basic Names of G-d, א-ל, El. You discuss this Name of G-d in connection to the first two digits of the mathematical constant Pi (3.1), which converts a straight line into a circle.

    The idea of an encompassing circle is also connected to the idea of the Sefirah of Kesser, and so too a crown is a precious circular hat, a symbol of Kingship, that rests on and encompasses the also circular head, and Kesser is also said to encompass like a circle all the other Sefiros.

    Kesser is also associated with the number 20 because each world has 10 Sefiros, each of which has a root in the Sefirah of Kesser that encompasses them, and the 10 Sefiros in their revealed state plus the 10 Sefiros in their root, make a total of 20.

    Also the number 10 corresponds to the 10 fingers, and that is why the letter י, Yud, with a gemtria of 10, is related to and originally was a pictogram of a Yad, hand, because there are 10 fingers on the two hands. The letter כ, Kuf, is gemtria 20, and note that the this letter is related to the palm of the hands, which has curved shape and is inclusive of all the fingers, reminiscent of an encompassing circle, like the Sefirah of Kesser that it represents. Also hinting to this the initial letter of the word כתר, Kesser, is also the letter כ, Kuf.

    As you wrote at the beginning of this post, there are 57 verses in P’ Behar, and 78 in P’ B’chukosai, and here this year we read these two Parshios together, making this a wonderful hint to this auspicious year 5778.

    When I read that I wondered what might be hinted in the previous Parsha, P’ Emor, with its 124 verses, that we read this past Shabbos. It comes out that 124 = 31 x 4, or 4 times the Name E-l, which is exactly 1/5 of 620, Kesser, and as I explained previously the idea of 1/5 or 20% is connected to the Sefirah of Hod, and this past Shabbos was associated with counting in the Omer the Sefirah of Malchus s’b’Hod.

  12. Thank you for all the recent comments. In YoM HShishi. In H’ShMym. In B’yoM HSheviyi. There is also a 4th and 5th times in B’yoM HSheviyi again and in yoM HSheviyi

  13. Regarding the hints to Hashem and Moshe in the verses recited for the Shabbas Kiddush (the end of Breishis 1:32, and 2:1-3), it is possible to find significant meaning in the number of letters that are skipped between each of the 5 times these hints appear:

    Not including the letters of the hints themselves, between the 1st occurrence, yoM HShishi, and the 2nd occurrence, H’ShMym, there are 7 letters. This corresponds to the Shabbos, the 7th day, a reflection of the plain meaning of these verses about the holiness of Shabbos.

    Between the 2nd and 3rd occurrence, b’yoM HSheviyi, there are 26 letters. This corresponds to the gematria of Hashem Y-H-V-H, as also hinted in the initials at the beginning of this text, Y’om H’ashishi V’ayechulu H’ashomayim. Also as per the Rabbinic addition of one hour before Shabbos and one hour after Shabbos, it is the practice to keep the Shabbos for 26 hours.

    Between the 3rd and 4th occurrence, b’yoM HSheviyi, there are 24 letters. This corresponds to the 24 Books of the Bible, TaNach, and to the 24 letters of Boruch Shem Kevod Malchuso Leolam Voed, “Blessed be the Name of His glorious Kingdom forever and ever,” and also to the 24 ornaments of a bride, forthe Shabbat is called a “queen” and “bride” (and also to the regular 24 hours of the day).

    Between the 4th and 5th occurrence, yoM HSheviyi, there are 33 letters, corresponding to La”g B’Omer, as explained previously, to the 33 years King Dovid reigned in Yerusholayim, and other significant ideas as shall B”N be explained at another occasion.

  14. In some places on the web I have found it stated, mistakenly, that the Name Elokim occurs 33 times in the creation account in the beginning of the Torah. I was about to include that as a hint at the end of my last comment, but by counting for myself and by double and triple checking this proved to be wrong.

    Instead, the truth is that in Breishis chapter 1 verses 1-32 there are 32 instances of Elokim, an average of one per verse, and in the Vayechulu paragraph, the beginning of chapter 2, verses 1-3, there are 3 instances of Elokim, again an average of one per verse, for a total of 35 instances of Elokim in the 35 verses of the Torah account of the initial Seven Days of creation.

    (It is only after that, starting in verse 2:4, that the Name Hashem (YHVH) is openly introduced in the Scripture for the first time, “These are the generations of the heaven and the earth when they were created, on the day that Hashem Elokim made earth and heaven.”)

    It is interesting to note that corresponding to this, in the Vayechulu paragraph itself there are 35 words, and since in various ways this can be doubled — for example since each word is repeated because this paragraph is said both in the Shabbos night Tefilah and then also at home in the Kiddush, or when reviewing the Parsha we do two times the text (and one time translation), or since at the Shabbos night service according to custom this is said by two people together give testimony to the Shabbos (since witness testimony requires two witnesses), and in other ways too — therefore this again hints to the number 70, and similarly 35 times the Name Elokim plus 35 verses adds up to 70, and thus this can also be seen as another allusion to the idea of the Seven Days of creation.

    Anyway, the Name Elokim is still connected to Lag B’omer, as evident in Psalm 67, which you, Ezra, mentioned above, because for every night in our counting of the Omer we recite this Psalm with special intention to one word per night for each of the 49 words of the Psalm (not including the header, the first verse, Laminatza’ach Binginos Mizmor Shir), and the 33rd word, which we have special intention to on Lag B’omer, is the word Elokim.

    Actually in these 49 words the Name Elokim occurs 5 more times (plus on time the word Elokainu) in this Psalm, including the 1st of these 49 words, and the 33rd word is the 3rd of these times that the Name Elokim appears.

    Further, you noted that 67, the number of the Psalm, is gematria for בינה, Binah, Understanding, and to stress this connection even more, the Sefirah of Binah is in many places associated directly with the Name Elokim.

    Also, clearly more than coincidence, the other two words that I wrote about that are associated with Lag B’Omer, the word נהל, Nahail, Lead , in the Ono B’Koach prayer, and the word נדגל, Nidgol, We Raise Our Banner, the 33rd of the 70 words in Psalm 20, are in gematria respectively 85 and 87, one less and one more than the word Elokim which has a gematria of 86. By adding or subtracting one for the Kolel each of these words can correspond to 86. Interestingly, the word כולל, Kolel, itself is gematria 86.

    In connection to the Psalms, it is interesting to note that the word הילולה, Hilulah, Celebration, which is used to denote the commemoration of a special day, especially the commemoration of a Tzadik’s passing, as Lag B’Omer is the Hilulah of R’ Shimon Bar Yochoi, is also gematria 86.

    Similarly the word הללוי-ה, Halleluya, Praise G-d, is also gematria 86. Halleluya is the first and the last word of a number of Psalms, and indeed it is the final word in the Book of Tehillim, and thus also intimately connected with the idea of Hod. [As I am about to upload this I see that Garth, in the most recent comment, paraphrased this verse at the end of Tehillim, Kol Haneshama Tehalel Y-a Halleluya, Let every being with a soul praise G-d; praise G-d.]

    After all this about Elokim, it is also worthwhile to point out that 26 (the Name Hashem) + 7 (the Name Elokim in the Seven Days of creation) = 33.

  15. In Ezra’s post a good case is made for the specialness of next Monday — the 14th of May, the day Israel actually completes the prophesied 70-year period until Moshiach in the Gregorian Calendar, which is also the date Donald J Trump has blessed Israel with the official transfer of the US embassy to Jerusalem.

    It is certain that each day now we are getting closer and closer to revelation of Moshiach. In a previous comment I noted that last week we had the influence of the Sefirah of Hod, this week it is Yesod, and next week Malchus, starting from Sunday, Chesed s’b’Malchus, which coincides this year with Yom Yerushalayim, on March 13. The next day, March 14, as in the post, Gevurah s’b’Malchus, is indeed very special. The next day after that is also very special, being Tiferes s’b’Malchus, Rosh Chodesh Sivan. After that each day will continue to add ever increasing holiness, until we reach the Holy day of Shabbos, Malchus s’b’Malchus.

    After that, as Ezra’s post continues, “we receive Shavuot, the day (time) of illumination, when our vessels are fully capable of receiving the light of Mashiach.”

    It seems that Shevuos, the 50th day after Pesach, coming this year on Sunday May 20 (starting right after Shabbos on Saturday night), or on the Hebrew calendar the 6th of Sivan, is spiritually the mightiest of the upcoming days, being exactly 3330 years since the giving of the Torah on Mount Sinai.

    Outside of Israel, in the Diaspora, Shevuos is celebrated for two days, meaning also on Monday May 21, the 7th of Sivan, the 51st day after Pesach – and this may be more significant than usual because this is the 51st year since Jerusalem was reunited, as we will celebrate on Yom Yerusholayim.

    Shevuos is also the Hillulah of Dovid Hamelech, and accordingly it must automatically be a very auspicious day for the descendant of Dovid, Moshiach Ben Dovid, and especially since Shevuos is also the Hillulah of the Baal Shem Tov, the founder of the Chassidic way, which is founded upon the Kabbalistic teachings of the Rashbi and the Arizal.

    As Ezra pointed out, the 150 Psalms of Dovid’s Sefer Tehillim correspond to the 150 days from Zos Channuka to Shevuos, and that means that there is a special synergy then with the final Psalm, which starts with the verse “Halleluyah, praise G-d in his Sanctuary…,” and ends with “Let every soul praise G-d, Halleluyah” – and these elevated themes, sung unto G-d by Dovid Hamelech, will be completely fulfilled with the arrival and influence of Moshiach Ben Dovid.

    There have been world shaking developments that took place today, significant things reported in the news, such as President Trump pulling the United States out of the Iran Nuclear Deal and an apparent Israeli attack on an Iranian base in Syria, and also significant things not yet reported in the news. The upcoming days will be very critical. Therefore it is a time for us to increase in learning Torah, performing Mitzvos and doing good deeds, and reciting Tehillim and increasing in our prayers to G-d.

    Hashem Hoshiah Hamelech Ya’aneinu B’Yom Korainu.

  16. That is actually quite amazing. Thank you so much for that It’s all G-d’s Design. I never looked into the digit strings within Phi and e, but the first 43 digits in Pi sum to 210 as in the 210 years in Egyptian Exile and the sum of the first 1000 digits, excluding the first 42 sum to 4240 or 10 x 424 (Moshiach Ben David).

  17. You’ve given us so much to think about, thanks so much. Bizrat Hashem I find the time so share soon an important numerical sequence I learned about on Lag B’omer. BTW, whether 33 comes up, it relates someone to the first 8 words (33 letters) in the Torah whose gematria (3003) = the sum of the integers through 77.

  18. Regarding the Torah reading for this coming Shabbos, which is the 42nd day of the Omer, Malchus s’b’Yesod, in Eretz Yisroel we read the Bechukosai, and in Chutz Lo’oretz we read the combined Behar and Bechukosai, as you noted.

    It is interesting that Behar is the 32nd Sedrah, and Bechukosai is the 33rd Sedrah, and with this reading we complete Sefer Vayikrah, Leviticus, the 3rd Book of Torah.

    In Sefer Vayikrah, at the beginning of Tazriah, the 27th Sedrah, which 27 = 3 x 3 x 3, or 3 to the 3rd power, we read the laws of a woman who gives birth (Leviticus 12:1-8), and we find the numbers 7, 8, 33, 14 and 66 mentioned explicitly:
    A woman after giving birth to a male child remains ritually unclean for 7 days, the child is circumcised on the 8th day, and then she has a clean waiting period of 33 days before she can become purified. For a female child she remains ritually unclean for two weeks, i.e., 14 days, and then she has a clean waiting period of 66 days. When her purification period is complete for a male of female she brings a sin offering and achieves atonement and becomes pure. The whole process from the day of giving birth to a male takes a total of 7 + 33 = 40 days, and for a female 14 + 66 = 80 days. From this too it is evident that the number 33 indicates a level of completeness.

    Also, immediately after the day of Matan Torah, 3330 years ago, after all Yisroel heard Hashem speak at Mount Sinai, the Torah at end of Parshas Mishpotim says (Exodus 24:12-18, Kaplan’s translation):

    G-d said to Moses, Come up to Me , to the mountain, and remain there. I will give you the stone tablets, the Torah and the commandment that I have written for [the people’s] instruction. Moses and his aid Joshua set out. Moses went up on G-d’s Mountain… As soon as Moses reached the mountain top, the cloud covered the mountain. G-d’s glory rested on Mount Sinai, and it was covered by the cloud for six days. On the seventh day, He called to Moses from the midst of the cloud. To the Israelites, the appearance of G-d’s glory on the mountain top was like a devouring flame. Moses went into the cloud, and climbed to the mountain top. Moses was to remain on the mountain for forty days and forty nights.

    It seems from this, as many commentaries explain, that of the 40 days that Moshe went up to receive the Tablets of the Covenant, there was first a 6 day waiting period, then on the 7th day G-d told him to ascend higher, and that implies that he was up on the highest level of the mountain for 33 full days and nights (after going up sometime, probably during daytime, of the 7th day).

    The most prevalent opinion of our sages is that the day of Mattan Torah was also a Shabbos, also stressing the 7th day.

    There is a famous saying of our sages that Hashem gave the 3-fold Torah (i.e., composed of 3 parts, Torah, Neviim and Ksuvim), to a 3-fold people (Kohanim, Leviim and Yisroalim), through a 3rd person (i.e., Moshe, the 3rd after his siblings Miriam and Aaron), on the 3rd day (see Exodus 19:16, and from context it is seen this is the 6th of Sivan, as in the hint on “Yom HAshishi,” in Breishis that we recite at the beginning of Shabbos Kiddush), of the 3rd month (Sivan, see Exodus 19:1). IIRC in the Midrash and commentaries there are many more 3’s given…

    This too connects with the idea of that 3 , and especially a series of repeating threes, like 33, or 3330, is an indication of a sign of a certain level of perfection.

    Also the idea of משולש, Meshulash, 3-fold, as explained by many commentators, implies superior quality. See for example in G-d’s covenant with Avrohom (in year 2018), on Genesis 15:9 ויאמר אליו קחה לי עגלה משלשת ועז משלשת ואיל משלש ותר וגוזל, “G-d said to him, “Bring for Me a prime heifer, a prime goat, a prime ram, a dove and a young pigeon,” and see Kaplan’s note:

    Prime, Meshulesheth in Hebrew, literally “threefold,” “triplet,” or “third grade.” This denotes the best quality… Another interpretation is that the animals were to be three years old… Others say that they were to be part of a triplet… Finally, there are some who maintain that three of each animal were to be brought… (see there for references).

    Note too that the word עגלה, heifer, the first of these animals, has in it the letters גל, 33, and the second animal עז, goat, is 77, the third animal איל, ram, has 3 letters and ends in ל, 30, the fourth תר, is gematria 600 = 3 x 200 = 30 x 20 = 300 x 2, and the fifth animal גוזל, begins and ends with גל, 33.

    Similarly, see Exodus 14:7, that when Pharaoh chased after Yisroel to try to return them to Egypt, he took with him 600 chariots with chosen crews, as well as the entire chariot corps of Egypt, with שלשם, Sholishim, “supporting infantry” or “officers” for them all. Again the root Sholosh, usually meaning the number 3, is in context taken to mean not merely a number, but a qualitative indication of superiority.

    Before I wrote about the 35 times the Name Elokim occurs in the Torah’s creation story. 35 is evenly divisible by 7, for 5 x 7 = 35. Also the gematria of Elokim is 86, and 35 x 86 = 3010, which is 7 more than the number 3003, i.e., 35 x 86 = the sum of the integers through 77 + 7 (in the manner of a Kollel). The number 3010 is also reminiscent of the number 31, the gematria of the Name E-l, which is also the first two letters of the Name Elokim.

    You and many of your readers may have noticed that R’ Ashlag, spelled in Hebrew, is א-שלג, which is 1 (or Elef, 1000, which is 1 with 3 digit places after it) and three hundred thirty three, 333. Also a snow flake, שלג, Sheleg, is a natural and beautiful 6-sided star, which is similar to a Magan Dovid, the Star (and Shield) of David, composed of two 3-sided equilateral triangles, one pointing downward and one pointing upward. And R’ Ashlag is the one who gave over this predicted date for Moshiach’s arrival 3330 years after Matan Torah.

    R’ Ashlag was a follower in the path of the Rashbi, the Arizal, and of the Baal Shem Tov, three great luminaries of the Torah and of Kabbalah, and he sincerely implored us to follow in this path as well.

  19. At the beginning of my previous comment I did not mention that this upcoming Shabbos — the 42nd day of the Omer, Malchus s’b’Yesod, when we read Behar-Bechukosai, the 32nd and 33rd Sedros in the Torah, is also the 27th of Iyar, and again 27 = 3 x 3 x 3 = 3 to the 3rd power.

    It is possible to connect the above ideas with the 3 paragraphs of Shma Yisroel:

    As you discussed in a few of your posts, the three fundamental paragraphs of Krias Shma, which express the fundamentals of our faith, consist of exactly 1000 letters. That is marvelous meditation that almost no one is aware of.

    Searching on the internet I found this mentioned on one other website, by well known Torah scholar and Kabbalist, who wrote (my translation from Hebrew): “The main beauty of Krias Shma is expressed in the number of its letters, for although no one writes about this, the paragraphs as they are written in the Torah have exactly 1000 letters (10 to the power of 3), and this certainly alludes to the 1000 Lights of Matan Torah, and hints to the Ten Commandments that are represented in the Krias Shma.”

    It is indeed somewhat startling that in the libraries full of Seforim the exact 1000 letter count of Krias Shma is not mentioned, and it just goes to prove that that there is always more to discover, and that some of the choicest revelations can be made by practically anyone who tries.

    I believe you have already basically covered most of this, but let me try to express it here this way:

    The main meditation on the first verse, “Here O Israel, Hashem is our G-d, Hashem is One,” is to concentrate on understanding that G-d is One and that He is Master of the world. This is expressed in the letter א, Alef, since in gematria it equals One, and also since the same root אלוף, Alef, means Ruler or Master, as in the expression that Hashem is the Alufo [Alef] Shel Olam, Master of the World. The root wood Alef also has a meaning of Teaching and Instruction, as in the word אולפן, Ulpan, and this teaching of the Shma is the most essential teaching of all. And since the same root gives rise to the word אלף, Elef, meaning the number 1000, this enhances our understanding that Hashem is present in everything, in all the myriad details of the universe, and He unites everything together for His purpose. This is hinted in the 1000 letters of the Shma, which unite into one coherent theme, which directly hints back to Hashem, the Creator and Giver of the Torah, the One and Only G-d.

    In addition, here I’d like to stress the hint in the initials of the first verse of Shma, ש’מע י’שראל י’הו-ה א’להינו י’הו-ה א’חד, Shma Yisroel Hashem Elokainu Hashem Echod, add up to 300 + 10 + 10 + 1 + 10 + 1 = 332, and with 1 for the Kolel = 333, and this connects with the numbers we have been discussing, and when multiplied by 10, corresponding to the 10 Sefiros, equals 3330, the number of years we are now from the giving of the Torah. I found that you already wrote this in a post from seven years ago.

    In addition it is possible to say that since the 3 paragraphs have 1000 letters, then the average for each paragraph is 1000/3 = 333.333…

    I have not yet found anywhere a mention however of the particular breakdown of the 1000 letters, as they are specifically divided among the three paragraphs of Shma, however according to my count the first paragraph has 205 letters, the second paragraph has 508 letters, and the third paragraph has 287 letters, and 205 + 508 + 287 = 1000.

    As for what these particular numbers may signify, I have some ideas I am working on that may take me some time to properly express in writing. Meanwhile I’d just like to put this out and ask you and the readers to double check my counting and for some feedback about this if possible.

  20. In connection to my previous comment, it is worth noting that the initials of the three paragraphs of Shma are ש’מע ו’היה ו’יאמר, the letters שו”ו, gematria 312, which is a number also discussed above.

    It turns out in addition to what was said before, 312 = 2 x 156, i.e., two times the gematria of יוסף, the Biblical Yosef Hatzadik, the progenitor of Moshiach Ben Yosef, and today is Yesod s’b’Yesod (Yesod doubled), and it is certainly a Brocha Meruba to remember and mention this.

    Arutz Sheva has an article today reporting that 6000 Jews visit Joseph’s Tomb in Shechem; Massive convoy of visitors, escorted by IDF, enters PA-controlled city of Shechem for pilgrimage to Joseph’s Tomb.

    The number 6000 is interesting for many reasons, including because Yosef has a strong connection to this number, since the gematria of his name 156 = 6 x 26, and the Sefirah of Yesod is the 6th Sefirah from Chesed.

  21. Regarding the 1000 letters of Shma, 205 in the first paragraph, 508 letters in the second paragraph, and 287 in the third paragraph, and the allusion and connection this has to the Torah portions we are reading at the present time:

    The first paragraph of Shma has 205 letters, and the simplest possible word with this gematria is הר, Har, meaning Mountain. This word is evident in the word ב-הר, “In the Mountain,” which is the title of the first Sedroh, Behar, that we read this past Shabbos.

    The second paragraph of Shma has 508 letters, and one of the simplest words with this gematria is חקת, Chukas, meaning Law or Statute – and this word is evident in the word ב-חקת-י, “(If you go) In My Statutes,” which is the title of the second Sedrah, B’chukosai, that we read this past Shabbos.

    Together, the first two paragraphs of Shma, with letter counts hinting to Mountain and to Law, therefore clearly can be seen to be reflective of the great revelation of G-d on the Mountain of Sinai together with the giving of the Torah and Mitzvah Laws.

    Corresponding to this, the first two paragraphs of Shma stress attachment to G-d on the highest levels, with love and reverence, and acceptance of the yoke of the obligations to study Torah and observe Mitzvos, just as was experienced by Israel at Mount Sinai, and during our recital of the Shma we therefore commemorate and relive this lofty experience.

    The specific Mitzvos mentioned in these two first two paragraphs of Shma, putting on two boxes of Tefillin, one on one’s arm and one on one’s head, and affixing Mezuzahs on one’s houses and gates, also correspond to the great gifts given by G-d to Israel at Mount Sinai:

    Most sanctified of all are the Two Tablets of the Covenant, the First Tablet with the basic commandments between G-d and man, which is symbolized by the Tefillin one places on one’s head, one’s intellect and inner sentiments, representing attachment to G-d, and the Second Tablet with the basic commandments between man and man, is symbolized by the Tefillin on places on one’s arm, representing one’s outer emotions, deeds and actions between man and his fellow man.

    In addition, together with G-d’s gift of the Holy Tablets was His command to make the Holy Sanctuary, a building to house and protect the Holy Tablets, and to be a place for service and communion with G-d.

    Corresponding to this in the first two paragraphs of Shma there is the commandment to affix Mezuzahs on the posts of our doors and gates, and this is symbolic of the Holy Sanctuary, since the Mezuzos in effect transform our mundane abodes into holy sanctuaries devoted to G-d.

    The main differences between the two paragraphs of Shma is that the first paragraph is addressed to each person individually, while the second paragraph is addressed to the community all together, and that the first paragraph does not address the issue of sin and repentance, while the second paragraph explicitly discusses this.

    Following the same pattern, at the onset of the revelation at Mount Sinai the fledgling nation of Israel stood united together as one individual, with one heart and one soul, and the First Set of Tablets were given – and this is illustrated by the first paragraph of Shma, in the singular, and with no mention of sin.

    After the sin of the Golden Calf, and the smashing and destruction of the First Set of Tablets, Israel as a community repented and returned to full observation of the Mitzvos, and then the Second Set of Tablets were given – and this is illustrated by the second paragraph of Shma, in the plural, and discussing return to G-d and keeping Mitzvos even after sin.

    More specifically, the mention of Tefillin in the first paragraph of Shma is symbolic of the First Set of Tablets, and the mention of Tefillin in the second paragraph of Shma is symbolic of the Second Set of Tablets.

    Similarly regarding the commandment of Mezuzos in the first paragraph of Shma compared to the commandment of Mezuzos in the second paragraph of Shma:

    The level of the Holy Sanctuary was affected by sin, and therefore this pattern was reflected in the building of the First Temple by Kings Dovid and Shlomo, when Israel was in its glory, on the level of Tzadikim, however, after the sinning by the people, the First Temple was destroyed, and only after repentance and return to G-d, Torah and Mitzvos, were the Jews able to build the Second Temple, led by Ezra and Nechemya. The First Temple is symbolized by the commandment of Mezuzos in the first paragraph of Shma, and the Second Temple is symbolized by the commandment of Mezuzos in the second paragraph of Shma.

    In addition to the hints as mentioned above in the names of the Sedros Behar and B’chukosai – that we read yesterday, on the Shabbos that blesses this auspicious entire week that follows, in which B’ezras Hashem, we will see the unfolding of Hashem’s Sefirah of Malchus, Kingship – a review of the content of these Sedros also turns up correspondences between the topics written in them and the themes of first two paragraphs of Shma as described above.

    Bli Neder this will be explained at the next opportunity, as well as some of the significance of the 287 letters in the third paragraph of Shma.

    (To be continued.)

  22. Before continuing with the correspondences between the topics written in Sedros Behar and B’chukosai and the themes of first two paragraphs of Shma, as I said I would do, it is noteworthy to point out some other hints to the number of letters in these two paragraphs.

    The number 205, the number of letters in the first paragraph of Shma, is exactly one half of the gematria of the first word of the paragraph, שמע, Shma, which is 410, for 205 x 2 = 410.

    This may hint to the obligation of reciting Shma is two times a day, once in the morning and once in the evening. Alternatively it may hint that there are actually two Mountains from which G-d’s Unity is proclaimed, one in the wilderness, Mount Sinai, where the Torah was given and near it the Mishkon, Tabernacle, was made and erected, and the second Mountain is in the Land of Israel, in Jerusalem, the Har Habayis, the Temple Mount, Mount Moriah, where the First and Second Holy Temples were built, which are hinted in the words of Shma as discussed above, and where the Third Holy Temple will be built soon in our days.

    There is also a hint to the number 508, the number of letters in the second paragraph of Shma, in the beginning of the second paragraph of Shma, since it starts with the words והיה אם שמע תשמעו אל מצותי, Vhoyo Im Shomoa Tishmau El Mitzvosai, “And it shall be if you diligently listen to (and observe) My commandments,” and the gematria of the first word, Vhoyo, is 26 (same letters and gematria as the Name Hashem), the gematria of the second word, Im, is 41 – and thus the first two words together 26 + 41 = 67, Binah, Understanding – and the gematria of the third word, Shomoa, is 410 (same root and gematria as the word Shma from the first paragraph), giving 67 + 410 = 477 for the first three words, and then if we skip the next word, Tishmau (because it is essentially a repeat of the previous word, which is doubled to add emphasis), and add the gematria of the next word, El, 31, then we get 477 + 31 = 508.

    It is also interesting that when reduced to the form of their small gematria, 205 = 2 + 0 + 5 = 7, and 508 = 5 + 0 + 8 = 13, and 7 and 13 are each significant numbers in their own right, and yet even more interesting, when these two numbers, 7 and 13, are joined together to form the number 713, they identically match the standard sum of the two base numbers, since 205 + 508 = 713. If the word count of either paragraph was changed by one letter this resonance would not be seen, so once again the Intelligent Design of the Torah is revealed.

    In the natural sciences, especially in biology, in reference to the specific complexity of living cells and organisms, the term “Intelligent Design” is being used to indicate that life is way too complex to have arisen through blind chance and coincidence, and when honestly considered it is apparent that what we see is evidence that the universe and everything in it is Intelligently Designed by the Creator, G-d.

    Similarly with regard to the complexity of the Torah, and the unfolding of its prophecies throughout history, the more one studies it the more one can see the evidence that this could have come about only through Intelligent Design, way beyond the realm of chance and coincidence.

    The descriptive term “Intelligent Design,” however, really should be modified slightly, for it is not just plain “Intelligent Design,” rather it is clearly “Super Intelligent Design.”

    (To be continued.)

  23. Regarding the correspondence between Behar and the first paragraph of Shma:

    Behar starts (Vayikra 25:1) with Hashem’s command to Moshe at Mount Sinai that when Israel would enter the Land they must celebrate a Shabbas L’Hashem, a Rest Dedicated to G-d, by agriculturally working the land for six years and then refraining from such work on the seventh year, the Shmita-Sabbatical year. This seven year cycle repeats for seven times, for 7 x 7 = 49 years, and then the 50th year, when agricultural work is also forbidden, is celebrated as a special Yovail-Jubalee year, and this cycle then repeats forever throughout time. On the Shmita and to a greater extent on the Yovail year freedom is proclaimed throughout the land and the people return to their families and properties and devote themselves to G-d.

    A second major theme developed in Behar is the affinity and responsibility each member of Israel has one to another, such that certainly each man is forbidden to deceive or cheat his fellow, and even one who encounters financial difficulties and sells his property is still regarded as “your brother,” he must be given assistance to buy back his land as soon as possible, and in any event his land automatically reverts to him on the Yovail year. Similarly “your brother” who becomes impoverished you must come to his aid and he is to be given interest free loans, and even if his circumstances collapse to the extent that he sells himself as a slave, he may not be treated disparagingly with hard labor, and he cannot be a permanent slave, because they are G-d’s very own slaves that He took out of slavery in Egypt and they must eternally serve Him.

    As explained above, the first paragraph of Shma is reminiscent of the great revelation of G-d on Mount Sinai, where the entire nation of Israel was united as one, on the level of Tzadikim before sin, and they accepted the yoke of heaven, accepting to keep the Ten Commandments and all the Torah Laws, and to be devoted and sanctified to G-d.

    Just as there are geographical mountains and mountain peaks, and Holy Mountains, especially Mt. Sinai and Mt. Moraih, so too there are temporal mountains and mountain peaks. During the year on a weekly and monthly basis these “mountains” are Shabbos and Yom Tov, and for greater measures of time, marking the generations, these are Shmita and Yovail. On these “mountains in time” mundane agricultural work is replaced by spiritual pursuits and with increased leisure and opportunity to celebrate G-d’s goodness and bounty with one’s family and nation, and to study and pray with greater devotion and communion with G-d. Therefore the commandments of Shmita and Yovail written in Behar correspond to the first paragraph of Shma in a readily understandable manner.

    In addition, the counting of 7 x 7 Shmita years and the celebration of the 50th year, Yovail, clearly parallel Israel’s counting of 7 x 7 weeks upon their Exodus from Egypt and then experiencing the giving of the Torah on the 50th day, which we are also commanded to commemorate each year at these times, Pesach through Shevuos.

    These numbers are also hinted in the first paragraph of Shma, since it has it is composed of 6 verses that are said out loud, which is symbolic of working on the land for 6 days or for 6 years, and also a 7th verse, Boruch Shaim Kevod Malchuso L’olam Voed, that is said silently, which is symbolic of refraining from work on the 7th day of Shabbos or the 7th year of Shmita.

    Also the word יובל, Yovail, as it is usually written fully with a letter Vov, is gematria 48, and with one more for the Kolel makes 49, and since the pattern continues on and on forever, we may allude to that by adding another one to hint to this 50th year.

    Similarly the first paragraph of Shma is composed of 48 words, and in the first verse two letters are written extra large, letters Ayin and Dalit, and when we recite the Shma these large letters are focused on to spell in our minds a 49th word, עד, Eid, Witness, i.e., to Witness G-d, and these two letters can also be read in reverse (on the level of Keser) as a 50th word, דע, Dah, Know, i.e., to Know G-d.

    Further, the Yovail year is proclaimed by the sounding of the Shofar on Yom Hakipurim in the Temple on Mt. Moriah, which Yom Kipur is the day Moshe brought the Second Tablets down from Mt. Sinai, and this is also connected to Mattan Torah on Mt. Sinai on Shevuos when the sound of the Shofar was heard. Similarly in commemoration of these special soundings of the Shofar we recite especially the first verse of Shma with an extra loud voice, which is reminiscent of the sounding of the Shofar on these Holy occasions.

    Also in Behar we find that the commands concerning Shmita and Yovail, and the majority of the verses about aiding “your brother,” are expressed in the singular form, “you” in the singular shall count, “you” in the singular shall aid your brother, and so on. This corresponds to the format of the first paragraph of Shma in which it says “you” shall love “your” G-d, in the singular, and these words shall be upon “your” heart in the singular, and so on, and all the way through to the end, “you” shall write them on the doorposts of “your” house and on “your” gates, all in the singular.

    Also in Behar there is no mention of sin and not keeping the Mitzvos, and there is no elaboration on the theme of reward and punishment, and this corresponds to the first paragraph of Shma, on the level of Tzadikim, as described above.

    Behar ends (26:2), “My Sabbaths shall you observe and My Sanctuary shall you revere, I am Hashem,” and this corresponds to the mentioning of Tefillin and Mezuzah at the end of the first paragraph of Shma, since both Shabbos and Tefillin are called “Signs” (and that is the reason given why on Shabbos we don’t put on Tefillin, because keeping the Shabbos itself is a Sign just like Tefillin), and since the Holy Sanctuary is hinted to by the Mezuzah, as explained above.

    A concluding note for now about the interesting Divine Providence evident in the 57 verses of Behar, is that these 57 verses may be understood to be yet another allusion to Shmita and Yovail, since 57 = 7 + 50, which perfectly corresponds to Shmita and Yovail, the 7th year and the 50th year, Holy Mountains and Sanctuaries in time.

    (To be continued.)

  24. One of the secrets I learned on this Lag B’omer was the significance of the primes (irreducible prime numbers). As you point out in the 3 paragraphs from the Torah that comprise the Shema, the first one consists of 48 words and 205 letters, which sum to 253. The largest and middle paragraph has 122 words and 508 letter which add up to 630 units. The final paragraph has 72 words and 287 letters. The connection to 72 Names is well known and I believe the 205 letters connects both to mountain (HaR of value 205) and to the 206 bones in the body since commentators have linked the Shema to the healing of the bones in our bodies yet they erroneously say there are 248 of them (as in the 248 total words in the Shema including the Baruch Shem. Nevertheless, the 72 words and 287 letters in the final paragraph add up to 359, the gematria of satan, and therefore this paragraph helps us overcome the satan (negative inclinations) within us, similarly to the 2 times this designation is found within the 42-Letter Name. Strengthening this connection between 72 and 359 is the fact that the 72nd prime is 359. And strengthening the argument of design intent in this is that the total for the two other paragraphs is 630 plus 253 or 883, which is the 153rd prime. 153 is a significant number unto itself, but notably 72 is divisible by 9 as 72/9 = 8 and so is 153/9 = 17 and (8+17) equals 25 as in the 25 letter first verse of the Shema. Moreover, the difference between 8 and 17 is 9, ergo the difference between 72 and 153 is 9 x 9 or 81. The number 9 is also built into the 42-Letter Name whose 2nd line (KRASTtN) is equivalent to 729 or 9x9x9 and notably this is one of the 2 incidences of satan (STtN)in the Name. The small gematria of the 42-Letter Name when divided by 9 gives us 70 plus Pi (73.14159…). So why 9? A connection to Chochma? So just to through out a little more odd math (divine intent) 7+2 as in 72nd prime = 9 as does 1+5+3 as in 153 prime = 9, as does their sum 225 (72+153) = 9; this is not slight of hand; it does not HAVE to work out that way. Moreover, 3+5+9 from 359 = 17 and 1+7 from 17 = 8, cross referencing completely the two heretofore unrelated primes. and then there is the fact that 1^3 + 5^3 + 3^3 = 153 and 7^3+ 2^3 = 351 or 153 reversed. I encourage all Kabbalist and gematria enthusiasts to look into the primes in relation to Torah Study.

  25. Ezra, I just skimmed your new comment, and hope to have some feedback on that too soon. Meanwhile here is the next installment in continuation to my previous comments:

    The connection of Shma to the birth of Israel upon the Exodus from Egypt, Pesach, and the 49 days of counting the Omer, until the giving of the Torah on Mount Sinai on the 50th day Shevuos, is also hinted, as it says in the Zohar, in that the sum of the 25 letters of the verse Shma Yisroel, plus the 24 letters of ברוך שם כבוד מלכותו לעולם ועד, Boruch Shaim Kevod Malchuso L’olam Vaed, “Blessed is the Name of His glorious kingdom forever and ever,” is 25 + 24 = 49, and this corresponds to the 49 gates of Bina/Understanding, which is connected with the Kolel, the 50th year Yovail and the G-dly revelation of the 50th day.

    The word Shma, which means Hear and Understand, is likewise by its literal definition connected to the Sefirah of Bina and Yovail.

    Also the initials of the first two words ש’מע י’שראל, Shma Yisroel, are the same as the initials of ש’בת and י’ום טוב, Shabbos and Yom Tov, and also ש’נה ש’ביעי ש’מטה and י’ובל, Shona Shevi’i, Shmita [see note below] and Yovail.

    Also the Shma is connected to the First Temple since the gematria of the word Shma is 410, and the First Temple stood for 410 years.

    The 25 letters of the verse Shma Yisroel may also hint to Sedrah Behar, since Behar spans all verses of chapter 25 of Vayikra-Leviticus.

    Also the 25 letters of the verse Shma may also be viewed as doubled to yield 2 x 25 = 50 letters, and thereby producing another hint to Yovail, since – similar to what was said above regarding doubling 205, the number of letters in the first paragraph, to get 410 – Shma is recited once in the morning and once in the evening, or once in thought and once in action, or once revealed and once in their root, or since Shma is on the level of Shabbos and “all aspects of Shabbos are doubled” as explained elsewhere.

    Here it is fitting to point out that all 1000 letters of the Krias Shma can be understood to be hinted in the word שמע, Shma, by combining its first and last letters, since the first letter is Shin, gematria 300, and the last letter, the letter Ayin, normally gematria 70, is written extra large, and may be interpreted as increased 10-fold, as 700, and 300 + 700 = 1000.

    The large letter Ayin, gematria 70 or 700, or understood as 7 x 7, also stresses the connection of Shma to Shabbos and Yom Tov and to Shmita and Yovail.

    Here too it is fitting to point out that this large letter Ayin may also hint to the last 70 years of exile, the 70 years from the founding of the modern state of Israel until this auspicious year.

    These matters could be expanded upon unlimitedly but let us return next to the explanation of the commotion between B’chukosai and the second paragraph of Shma, and then to a discussion regarding the Third paragraph of Shma.

    Note: Incidentally, the word “Shmita” does not occur in Behar, but rather at the beginning of Devorim chapter 10, where the Torah commands even more brotherly love between one Israelite and another, to the extent that the Seventh year is also called Shmita, since then all personal loans are to be forgiven and Remitted, and one must not to be stingy about this which would be counted as sin, and in Devorim 31:10, where it says: “At the end of seven years, at the time of the Sbbatical year, during the Succcos festival, when all Israel comes to appear before Hashem your G-d in the place that He will choose, you shall read this Torah before all Israel, in their ears. Gather together the people – the men, the women, and the small children, and your stranger who is in your cities – so that they will hear and so that they will learn, and they shall fear Hashem your G-d and be careful to perform all the words of this Torah…”

    In the note on these verses in Devorim 31:10 in the Artscroll Chumash it says: Hakhel/The king reads to the entire nation from Deuteronemy. Once every seven years – on the first day of Chol HaMoed [Intermediate Days] f Succos that followed the Sabbatical Year – the entire nation was commanded to come together at the Temple to listen to the king read to them from Deuteronomy. He read from the beginning of the Book to the end of the first paragraph of the Shema (6:9), the second paragraph of the Shema (11:13-21), and 14:22-28:69. These passages are all on the general subject of allegiance to G-d, the covenant, and reward and punishment. See there for more.

  26. Regarding the correspondence between B’chukosai and the second paragraph of Shma:

    B’chukosai starts (26:3) “If you follow in My decrees and observe My commandments and perform them; then I will provide your rains in their time, and the land will give its produce and the tree of the field will give its fruit…,” i.e., with the concept of the great reward that Israel will receive for keeping G-d’s commandments, starting with the bountiful agricultural produce of the land.

    This corresponds with the beginning of the second paragraph of Shma, “And it shall come to pass, that if you continually hearken to My commandments that I command you today… then I will provide rain for your land in its proper time, the early and late rains, that you may gather in your grain, your vine, your oil…,” the same theme of reward for keeping the commandments, starting with the bounty of the agricultural produce of the land.

    B’Chukosai continues with warning of punishment that will be meted out for not observing the commandments (26:14), “But if you will not listen to Me and will not perform all of these commandments… so that you annul My covenant, then I will do the same to you; I will assign upon you…” a litany of severe consequences and punishments, to the extent that the land will be overrun by enemies and the people destroyed and exiled.

    This corresponds with the continuation of the second paragraph of Shma, “Beware lest your heart be seduced and you turn astray… Then the wrath of Hashem will blaze against you… and you will swiftly be banished from the goodly land which Hashem gives you.”

    In B’Chukosai, after a series of 7 x 7 punishments for refusal to keep the commandments, the Torah states (26:40), “Then they will confess their sin and the sin of their forefathers, for the treachery with which they betrayed Me… I will remember My covenant with Jacob and also My covenant with Isaac, and also My covenant with Abraham will I remember, and I will remember the Land… I will remember for them the covenant of the ancients, those whom I have taken out of the land of Egypt before the eyes of the nations, to be G-d unto them. I am Hashem.”

    Correspondingly in the second paragraph of Shma it says that after the exile Israel should return to doing the commandments and then they will be returned to their land: “Place these words of Mine upon your heart and upon your soul; bind them for a sign upon your arm and let them be Tefillin between your eyes. Teach them to your children, to discuss them, while you sit in your home, while you walk on the way, when you retire and when you arise. And write them on the doorposts of your house and upon your gates. In order to prolong your days and the days of your children upon the ground that Hashem has sworn to your ancestors to give them, like the days of the heaven on the earth.” That concludes the second paragraph of Shman, and as a note in the Artscroll Siddur explains, “Eretz Yisrael is the eternal heritage of the Jewish people, just as heaven will always remain above the earth. Alternatively, just as heaven always showers blessings upon the earth in the form of life-giving rain, so too Israel will be blessed in the land G-d has sworn to it.”

    Another correspondence is that in B’chukosai all the verses refer to Israel in the plural form, always stressing the collective people, not in the singular as individuals. Similarly in the second paragraph of Shma, with the exception of some of the specific rewards for keeping the commandments and some of the specific commandments Israel will return to perform, the test is also written in the plural format, especially at the paragraph’s beginning and ending.

    At the end of B’chukosai it says (27:1), “Hashem spoke to Moshe saying; Speak to the Children of Israel d say to them: If a man articulates a vow to Hashem…,” i.e., the laws of Erchin, voluntary contributions to the Sanctuary and their evaluations, the laws for when an individual person expresses a vow to donate to G-d’s Sanctuary. Near the end (27:30-33) are some laws of Maasair, which is the required tithing the land and cattle or flock. Then at the very end comes the final verse (27:34), “These are the commandments that Hashem commanded Moshe to the Children of Israel on Mount Sinai.”

    The first and last of these verses are expressed in the plural form, addressing the Children of Israel as a group collectively, while all the details in between are expressed in the singular form to each individual. It is possible that this is because voluntary offerings cannot be required collectively of the congregation, they have to be individually initiated and fulfilled, and even the few laws of Maasair that are given here are focused on how an individual might want to exchange monetary value for the sanctified produce of the land (which, with conditions, one may do) or to exchange the sanctified cattle (which he may not do), because these things do not depend on the community, but rather the individual, so therefore the singular form is used in the Scripture.

    While these laws do not have direct corollary in the second paragraph of Shma, nevertheless since the end of the second paragraph of Shma alludes to the return to keeping the commandments and to the land of our forefathers and the rebuilding of the Temple there, therefore it is understood that the laws of Erchin and Maasair will likewise return.

    All of this is in the realm of Pshat, the plain meaning of these passages of the Torah, and as demonstrated herein B’Chukosai and the second paragraph of Shma overwhelmingly correspond one to another.

    (To be continued.)

  27. A few more amazing hints in the word Shma and in the first paragraph of Shma:

    Interestingly, the word שמע, Shma, is gematria 410, as said above, and this is also the gematria of the word משכן, Tabernacle, the prototype of the Beis Hamikdosh that Moshe and Bnei Yisroel erected at Mt. Sinai and described at length in the Torah, and also the gematria of the word קודש, or קדוש, meaning Holy, and this fits in very well with what was explained above.

    The statement of our sages, Kol Iska D’Shabbata Keful, “all things pertaining to Shabbas are doubled,” that was mentioned above, is from the Medrash on Tehillim 92, Mizmor shir l’yom haShabbos, and numerous instances of this are given there in the Medrash and in Seforim that discuss this.

    Perhaps another instance of this can be found in the first paragraph of Shma, which as said corresponds to Shabbos and Yovai, since when we examine the set of relatively unusual doubled letters that occur in the first paragraph of Shma in the five words, לבבך, לבבך, ושננתם, לטטפת מזזות, i.e., ב ב נ ט ז, and we take the gematrias of these letters and the sum thereof, 2 + 2 + 50 + 9 + 7 = 70, we get more hints reminding us of Shabbos and Yovail and the large letter Ayin in Shma.

    Amazingly, hints to the number of words and letters in all three paragraphs of Shma can be found in the first paragraph of Shma in the verse V’ohavto, “And you shall love Hashem your G-d,” and in the beginning of the next verse V’hoyu Hadevorim Ho’aileh, “And these words shall be upon your heart”:

    For the words ואהבת את י-ה-ו-ה א-להיך בכל לבבך, we can count 1 for each of the first 7 letters, plus the gematria of the next four words, to get 7 + 26 + 66 + 52 + 54 = 205, the number of letters in the first paragraph.

    The word לבבך, gematria 54, represents the number of regular words in the first paragraph, 48, plus the 6 words of Boruch Shaim Kevod Malchuso L’olam Voed, since 48 + 6 = 54.

    Then the gematria of the words ובכל נפשך is 58 + 450 = 508, the number of letters in the second paragraph of Shma.

    This is followed by ובכל מאדך, gematria 58 + 65 = 123, which hints to the 122 words of the second paragraph of Shma with the 1 more for the Kolel.

    Then for the third paragraph of Shma the word מאדך, gematria 65, plus 1 for each of the four letters of the word, gives 65 + 4 = 69, the number of actual words in the third paragraph itself. When joined with 1 more for the Kolel, or 1 more for the word Emes, truth, this hints to a round number 70.

    [Ezra in his latest comment said that in the third paragraph of Shma there are 72 words, but that is when the 69 base words are taken together with 3 more words, from the repetition of the last two words Hashem Elokaichem and the next word in the prayers, Emes].

    Then at the beginning of the next verse the first two words are והיו הדברים, gematria 27 + 261 = 288, which hints to the 287 letters of the third paragraph, plus 1 for the Kolel.

    The next word האלה, Ho’eileh, is gematria 41, and this can be understood to allude to all three paragraphs:

    When multiplied by 10, i.e., 41 x 10 = 410, we get the gematria of the first word of the first paragraph, Shma.

    The second word of the second paragraph, אם, Im, is itself gematria 41.

    The initial of the third word of the third paragraph א’ל, El, with the initial of the next word מ’שה, Moshe, is א”מ, Alef Mem, also gematria 41.

    The three times 41, once for each of the three paragraphs, gives 3 x 41 = 123, the same gematria as ובכל מאדך, U’vchol Meodecho, “with all your might,” which is the third of the three loves, “You shall love Hashem your G-d with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might.”

    (To be continued.)

  28. One of the secrets I learned on this Lag B’omer was the significance of the primes (irreducible prime numbers). As you point out in the 3 paragraphs from the Torah that comprise the Shema, the first one consists of 48 words and 205 letters, which sum to 253. The largest and middle paragraph has 122 words and 508 letter which add up to 630 units. The final paragraph has 72 words and 287 letters. The connection to 72 Names is well known and I believe the 205 letters connects both to mountain (HaR of value 205) and to the 206 bones in the body since commentators have linked the Shema to the healing of the bones in our bodies yet they erroneously say there are 248 of them (as in the 248 total words in the Shema including the Baruch Shem. Nevertheless, the 72 words and 287 letters in the final paragraph add up to 359, the gematria of satan, and therefore this paragraph helps us overcome the satan (negative inclinations) within us, similarly to the 2 times this designation is found within the 42-Letter Name. Strengthening this connection between 72 and 359 is the fact that the 72nd prime is 359. And strengthening the argument of design intent in this is that the total for the two other paragraphs is 630 plus 253 or 883, which is the 153rd prime. 153 is a significant number unto itself, but notably 72 is divisible by 9 as 72/9 = 8 and so is 153/9 = 17 and (8+17) equals 25 as in the 25 letter first verse of the Shema. Moreover, the difference between 8 and 17 is 9, ergo the difference between 72 and 153 is 9 x 9 or 81. The number 9 is also built into the 42-Letter Name whose 2nd line (KRASTtN) is equivalent to 729 or 9x9x9 and notably this is one of the 2 incidences of satan (STtN)in the Name. The small gematria of the 42-Letter Name when divided by 9 gives us 70 plus Pi (73.14159…). So why 9? A connection to Chochma? So just to through out a little more odd math (divine intent) 7+2 as in 72nd prime = 9 as does 1+5+3 as in 153 prime = 9, as does their sum 225 (72+153) = 9; this is not slight of hand; it does not HAVE to work out that way. Moreover, 3+5+9 from 359 = 17 and 1+7 from 17 = 8, cross referencing completely the two heretofore unrelated primes. and then there is the fact that 1^3 + 5^3 + 3^3 = 153 and 7^3+ 2^3 = 351 or 153 reversed. I encourage all Kabbalist and gematria enthusiasts to look into the primes in relation to Torah Study.

  29. With regard to the second paragraph of Shma, it has 9 verses, 122 words, and 508 letters.

    The 9 verses consist of 1 header verse (upper Keser), 1 concluding verse (lower Keser), and 7 middle verses (corresponding to the Seven Sefiros, Chesed through Malchus), 1 + 7 + 1 = 9.

    More specifically the number of words in the 9 verses is:

    Verse 1– 20 words;
    Verse 2 – 10 words;
    Verse 3 – 6 words;
    Verse 4 –11 words;
    Verse 5 – 24 words;
    Verse 6 – 17 words;
    Verse 7 – 12 words;
    Verse 8 – 5 words;
    Verse 9 – 17 words.

    Note that the beginning of the paragraph, verses 1-3, the good part, describing keeping the Mitzvos and serving G-d and the rewards for doing so, together have 36 words. This can be viewed as 36 = 17 + 17 + 2.

    The next two verses, verses 4 and 5, the bad part, the warning about rebellion against G-d and the punishment thereof, have 35 words. This can be viewed as 35 = 17 + 17 + 1.

    The next verse, verse 6, the initial return to G-d and performance of Mitzvos, represented by the Mitzvah of Tefillin, which are commandments performed with our own bodies, on our arms and heads, has a word count of 17.

    The next two verses, verses 7 and 8, that discuss further Mitzvah observance, teaching children and others and Mitzvos like Mezuzah which are Mitzvos extending beyond our own bodies, have a word count of 17.

    Then, wrapping up the paragraph, verse 9, the reward for all this, again has a word count of 17.

    All together we see that the 122 words equal 3 + 119, or 17 x 7 plus 3, corresponding to 17 for each of the 7 Sefiros, Chesed through Malchus, plus 3, representing the three higher Sefiros, Kesser-Chochma-Bina, or Chochma-Bina-Daas. The number 17 itself is gematria of טוב, Tov, Good, and 17 can be seen to be composed of 10 + 7, so 7 x 17 equals 7 x 10 = 70 plus 7 x 7 = 49, and 70 + 49 + 3 = 122.

    At any rate this shows the connection of the second paragraph of Shma to the idea of 7 x 7 = 49, which is connected with the Shabbos and with the giving of the Torah on Shevuos, and the ideas of the Shmita a Yovail, and the idea of the warning of 49 punishments discussed in B’chukosai, which as was said corresponds to the second paragraph of Shma. [Bechukosai has 78 verses, and 78 may be seen as 71 + 7, and it is possible to see the number 71 in reversed order, as the number 17, and that further connects to the ideas discussed above.]

    Also significantly, the first verse has 80 letters and consists of 20 words, nice round numbers, for a total of 20 + 80 =100, and all of these numbers are related to the Sefirah of Keser. Further, the 20th word, נפשכם, Nafshechem, “Your Souls,” is gematria 490 = 7 x 7 x 10, and this again corresponds to the 49 days of Sefiras HoOmer. The word Nafshechem is also repeated as the 79th word, which is the 8th word in the second half of the paragraph from where it begins to discuss return to G-d.

    In addition the 22nd word and again the 57th word is מטר, Mator, Rain, and this has adjacent letters Mem and Tes, also with gematria 49.

    Further, the symbolic Mitzvos mentioned in both the first and second paragraph of Shma, are the Mitzvos of Tefillin, which are called אות, Os, and טטפת, Totofos, and מזוזה, Mezuzah, and these words start with letters Alef, Tes, and Mem, in gematria 1 + 9 + 40 = 50.

    Also note that the 7th word from the end of the last verse of the second paragraph of Shma, לאבתיכם, La’avosaichem, “to your fathers,” is gematria 503, and together with the adjacent letter ה, Heh, at the end of the word Hashem, the 8th word from the end, we have 508, the total number of letters in the paragraph. Interestingly, the word next to Hashem, the 9th from the end, is נשבע, Nishba, meaning Sworn, “that Hashem has sworn to your fathers,” and the root of this word is also the same as Sheva, meaning the number 7. The word begins with letter Nun, gematria 50, so it also can be interpreted as 50 and 7, and therefore when joined as 507, plus 1 for the Kolel, the Name Hashen adjacent to it, is again the number 508.

    Of major importance for us to stress this year, is that the 36th word, the last word in the first part, the good part discussing doing Mitzvos and the reward, is the word ושבעת, V’Sovoto, “and you will be full,” or “and you will be satisfied.” The rood of this word, Sovah, is also related to Shevah, the word for the number 7, and the full word V’Sovoto is gematria 778 – as in this auspicious year, 5778.

    This is of course just scratching the surface but there is no time now for further explanations. Just very quickly regarding the third paragraph of Shma, in continuation to what was said above that the first two paragraphs are connected with the First Temple and the Second Temple respectively, it will be seen that the third paragraph, with the commandment of Tzitzis, corresponds to the Third Temple, to be built by Moshiach. Im Yirtza Hashem, it will be explained how hints to this may be hinted in Sedras Emor, the Torah reading immediately before Behar-B’Chukosai, as well s in the end of B’Chukosai itself, and in the next Sedrah, Bamidbar, which we read this Shabbos. With Shabbos and Yom Tov rapidly approaching, that will have to wait until next week at the earliest, B’ezras Hashem.

    Hashem has shown us very amazing things and major developments in the world and in Israel this week, and G-d willing He will continue to show us wonders, as it is written (Micha 7:15), “Like the days of your exodus from Egypt I will show you wonders.”

    Have a Good Shabbos and a Good Yom Tov!

  30. Continuing from my previous comment on the second paragraph of Shma, in which the number 17 played a significant role, Ezra had already pointed out regarding Lag B’Omer and Shevuos, that from the 33rd day of the Omer until Shevuos there are 17 days, thus the number 17 is a complementary number to the number 33, since 33 + 17 = 50. It also can be seen that 17 x 2 = 34 [regarding which 3 + 4 = 7], the next number greater than 33. And the significance of the number 17 continues since when we add 17 to 50 we get 50 + 17 = 67, the gematria of Bina, Understanding, and then adding another 33 takes us to the complete number 100.

    It is also significant that as Ezra pointed out numerous times the number 5778 is the sum of the integers from 1 to 107, and we can see the obvious relationship of the numbers 17 and 107.

    Also the number 17 is the 7th prime number, which has significance in relation to the Shma as was discussed.

    In addition, the number 17 can be viewed as 1 + 7 to obtain its Mispor Koton which is 1 + 7 = 8, which is the significant number with regard the Covenant of Milah, Circumcision, and also to the Mitzvah of Tzitzis, as shall soon be explained BE”H.

    Further, the sum of the number of words in the first paragraph of Shma, 48, plus the number of words in the second paragraph of Shma 122, is 48 + 122 = 170, and 170 is the same as 17 x 10.

    Interestingly, the number of words in the first and third paragraphs of Shma, 48 + 69 = 115, and if we add 7 more, i.e., 6 words for the first paragraph of Shma for the number of words in the silent verse Boruch Shem Kevod Malchuso L’olam Voed, and also add 1 for the word Emes said in immediate connection and continuation to the third paragraph of Shma, we get 115 + 6 + 1 = 122, which 122 is the number of words in the second paragraph of Shma.

    The number of verses in all three paragraphs is 6 + 9 + 5 = 20, a number representing Keser, or if we count the verse Boruch Shem then we get 7 + 9 + 5 = 21 = 7 x 3, an average of 7 for the 3 paragraphs.

    Previously there were discussed two hinted words in the first verse of Shma, עד, Eid, meaning Witness, and דע, Da, meaning Know, but it is also important to understand that there are many other hinted words as well that one can have in mind when reciting the Shma. For example, even the first word of Shma may be understood as שם ע, Shem Ayin, the Kabbalistic Divine Name 70, especially as we already explained the significance of the number 70 and its special connection to the themes of the Shma.

    Another example is from the second word Yisroel, which may be understood as starting with the word יש, Yesh, meaning There Is, i.e., Existence, i.e., to understand that he Absolute Necessary Existence is Hashem. Also the word Yisroel may be understood to start with the word ישר, Yosar, meaning He Shall Rule, or the word with the same spelling Yoshor, meaning Honest and True, which these are inherent essential qualities of Hashem.

    It is also possible to take the initial of the first word of the verse, Sh’ma, with the initial of the last word of the verse, E’chod – or alternatively the initial of the last word of the three paragraphs of Shma, E’lokeichem, or alternatively E’mes, and combine them to get the word spelled by letters Shin Aleph, שא, Soh, meaning Elevate or Uplift – as in the root word in title of the Torah reading for this past Shabbos, Parshas נשא, Nah-so, and this word too can be seen as initials for two words שמים, Shomayim, Heaven, and ארץ, Oretz, Earth, meaning it is our intention in reciting the Shma and in everything we do to Elevate and Uplift all the Heavens and the Earth.

    It is also possible to view these letters in reverse (Ohr Chozer), spelling the word אש, Fire, with the understanding that G-d’s words are like Fire, etc., and we have to pray with Fire, so on and so forth, as the ideas connect and cascade and extend endlessly.

    Similarly the initials of the intertwined verses שמע, Shma and ברוך, Boruch may be combined to form the word שב, Shuv, Return, as in Return to G-d, or Shev, Sit, to pray that Hashem so to speak Sits on His Throne and as He bestows blessings, existence and sustenance to all His creations in the heavens and in the earth.

    The second paragraph of Shma discusses the rains from the heavens and the produce from the earth, and also ends with Hashem’s blessing to Yisroel that He will bless them and increase their lives and the lives of their families on the Land that He swore to their forefathers to give to them “as the days of the heaven above the earth.”

    The third paragraph of Shma focuses on the Mitzvah of Tzitzis, and the Talis and Tzitzis also allude to the Heavens and the Earth, since the Talis is a garment that we spread out and encompass ourselves with and it thus represents the heavens – as we say in the verse we recite before putting on the Talis (Psalm 104:1-2), “My soul bless Hashem, Hashem my G-d, You are greatly exalted, You have garbed Yourself with majesty and splendor; cloaked in light as with a garment, spreading out the heavens like a curtain” – and since its four corners allude to the four corners and directions of the earth, as we recite in the prayer before Shma, “Hastily and speedily bring upon us blessing and peace; bring us to peace from the four corners of the earth,” and in many places.

    The Mitzvah of Tzitzis is also hinted in the word אחד, Ehod, One, in the first verse of Shma, since – as our sages explain we should have intention when saying the Shma to Unite the א, Alef, signifying the One Hashem, and Crown Him as King over the ח, Ches, i.e., the 7 Heavens and the 1 Earth, and throughout all the ד, Dalit, 4 corners of the earth, and likewise – the Mizvah of Tzitizis consists of 1 garment, with 7 + 1 = 8 strings, on each of its 4 corners. How fortunate we are to have this amazing Mitzvah!

    (To be continued.)

  31. It is tempting to launch into some more amazing aspects of Talis and Tzitzis, but here I have an obligation to first clarify my previous comments where it was explained that Behar corresponds to the first paragraph of Shma, and that B’chukosai corresponds to the second paragraph of Shma, and it was stated that Emor, the Shabbos Torah reading immediately before Behar-B’Chukosai, corresponds to the third paragraph of Shma, as does also the end of B’Chukosai, and the next Sedrah, Bamidbar, which was read the Shabbos before Shevuos. The explanation of this:

    Parshas Emor starts (Leviticus 21:1) with laws for a Kohan to not contaminate himself to a dead person except for “the relative who is closest to him,” i.e., his wife, as explained in the commentaries, and also his mother, father, son, daughter, brother, and virgin sister, i.e., 7 categories of people, and also an 8th category, anyone who is considered a Meis Mitzvah, when no one else is available to attend to the body for burial (see Rashi on Emor 21:4), and that is a critical aspect of the law, concern for and attachment for all Jews, to the extent that it overrides the normal ritual restrictions. These 8 categories can be seen to correspond to the 8 strings of Tzitzis that likewise consist of 7 plain strands of string with an 8th strand, the string of Techeiles, that joins with and wraps around all the others.

    When having to mourn for a relative who dies the verse 21:5 instructs us that one must not tear
    out the hair of our head or beard, and also not to cut one’s flesh, as was done by pagan practitioners of other religions, but rather the still practiced traditional Jewish approach to mourning and burial is that the mourner’s garment over his heart is torn, and this torn garment over the heart is reminiscent of the Talis that is worn over the heart, both physically and spiritually. Similarly the Jewish body is buried for eternity wrapped in a Talis, traditionally the same Talis the deceased wore during his lifetime. Essential indeed is one’s Talis, one’s garment for eternity.

    [Talis and Tzitzis are also clearly reminiscent of the Kohanic garments, which are 8 in number, and by wearing Talis and Tzitzis we follow in the model of the Kohamin and their holy garments as servants to G-d. In addition Talis and Tzitzis are reminiscent of some of the significant aspects of the Mishkon/Sanctuary, where the Divine service is performed, and by wearing the Talis and Tzitzis we essentially transform ourselves into becoming a Mishkon for Hashem, in the manner of “Build for me a Mishkon/Sanctuary and I will dwell in you – in each and every Jewish person.” BE”H these ideas will be explained more at length soon.]

    Aside from the sobering reference to death at beginning of Emor, there are many other aspects of the Sedrah that are also reminiscent of the themes of Talis and Tzitzis. For example, in a much more cheerful way, Emor also contains a listing of all the holidays, the special days throughout the year that are called Mikrah Kodesh, Holy, and these include the Holy Shabbos and 7 other Yomim Tovim that are called Mikrah Kodesh. In this listing Shabbos is Mikra Kodesh number 1, the First and Seventh days of Pesach are 2 and 3, Shevuos is 4, Rosh Hashana 5, Yom Kippur 6, the First day of Sukkos 7, and Shmini Atzeres, the Eighth Day Festival after the seven days of Sukkos, is number 8.

    Thus here again we have the important pattern of the number 8, as expressed in Talis and Tzitzis, and here too the 8 Holy Days can be understood as 7 holidays with 1 more that connects them and unites them all together in a common theme. The distinctly recognizable 8th thread may be understood to correspond to Shmini Atzeres, the final and Eighth Festival, after which the yearly cycle repeats over again, or alternatively it could be hinted to by the Shabbos, which occurs weekly and intertwines with and wraps around the entire Holiday cycle, or alternatively the Mikrah Kodesh Holidays may be said to be bound together by Yom Kippur, with its special holiness, Kodesh Kedoshim, Holy of Holy, or alternatively by any of the other Holidays, for each one adds something unique and essential to all others. In addition the celebration of the Shabbos and the Holidays are all reminders of our going out of Egypt just as are the Talis and Tzitzis. Before it was said that the Shabbos and Holidays are Holy Mountains in Time, and in addition it can be said that they are also Holy Garments in Time, comparable in many ways to the Holy Garment of Talis and Tzitzis.

    Emor also contains a number of hints connecting with the third paragraph of Shma, and indeed both Parshios even start with the very same first 4 words ויאמר ה’ אל משה, Vayomer Hashem El Moshe, And Hashem spoke to Moshe. Further the first two words Vayomer Hashem are gematria 257 + 26= 283, and adding 4 more for the 4 letters of the Name Hashem, or for the 4 corners of the garment of Tzitzis, the gematria becomes 283 + 4 = 287, which is the number of letters in the third paragraph of Shma that discusses the Tzitzis.

    Further, the verse continues אמר אל הכהנים, Emor El HaKohanim, Say to the Kohanim, and the word Emor, the name of the Sedrah, is gematria 241, and with the letter Vov, gematria 6, which is sounded in this word, אמור – or alternatively with the adjacent letter Heh (5) from the end of the previous word Moshe and the adjacent letter Alef from the beginning of the following word El – it is gematria 247, and with 1 for the Kolel it equals 248, which is the number of positive commandments that the Tzitzis is a reminder of, and also the number of words in the recitation of the Shma as in the teaching of our sages.

    The next word, HaKohanim, may be seen as consisting of two parts, the first part of the word is Hakohan, meaning “the priest” in the singular, which is gematria 80, and which corresponds to the 8 strings of Tzitzis, and the Yud Mem at the end of the word, making it plural, “the priests,” is gematria 50, which corresponds to the 5 knots of Tzitzis. The total gematria for the word HaKohanim is 130, which corresponds to the word אחד, One, and also אהבה, Ahava, Love, both gematria 13, and thus it is seen that this corresponds to the teaching of our sages o.b.m. that the Mitzvah of Tzitzis is inclusive of all 613 commandments, composed of 248 positive commandments and 365 negative commandments, as hinted in the word ציצית, Tzitzis, gematria 600, plus 8 strings, plus 5 knots, yielding 600 + 8 + 5 = 613, and as also self-evident in the words of the Torah itself in the third paragraph of Shma, the Parsha of Tzitzis, since it says there that we should look at the Tzitzis “in order that you remember and observe all of the Mitzvos of Hashem.”

    Incidentally there are also other ways to view the Tzitzis as hinting to and representing all the Mitzvos, as BE”H shall be explained another time, however here it can already be pointed out that the third paragraph of Shma has 5 verses, 69 words, and 287 letters, summing to 5 + 69 + 287 = 361, and with the word אמת, Emes, True, recited in conjunction with this paragraph of Shma, we add 1 for the 1 word and 3 for the 3 letters to get 361 + 1 + 3 = 365, corresponding to the number of negative commandments, the number of Gidim (vaguely translated as “sinews”) in the body, and the number of days in the year.

    Another last hint for now can be seen in Emor at the beginning of verse 21:6, קדשים יהיה לאל-היכם, Kedoshim Yiyu La’lo-hachem, “Holy shall you be unto your G-d,” since this also corresponds to the main theme of Tzitzis, as it says very similar to this in the third paragraph of Shma, Viyisem Kedoshim La’lo-hachem, “And you shall be holy unto your G-d,” and especially since these words are gematria 454 + 31 + 121 = 606, which is the same as the word ציצית, 600, with its 5 letters and 1 for the Kolel, 600 + 5 + 1 = 606, or alternatively, the words Kedoshim Yiyu La’lo-hachem, gematria 606, if we add 6 for the sounded Vov in the word קדושים, Kedoshim, or in the word לאלו-היכם, La’lo-hachem, plus 1 for the Kolel, we get 606 + 6 + 1 = 613, again the number of commandments of Hashem that the Tzitzis reminds us of.

    (To be continued.)

  32. In honor of Shabbos Parshas Shlach, which concludes with the third paragraph of Sham, the paragraph discussing Tzitzis, it is fitting to add some more amazing details of what can be understood about this Mitzvah, and of course the understanding should be brought down to action with increased enthusiasm in the observance of the Mitzvah by actually putting on and wearing Tzitzis.

    Continuing from my previous comment:

    There are also other hints to Tzitzis in Parshas Emor. For example, Leviticus 22:17-25 discusses which animals are acceptable as sacrifices, stating that they must be from three animals, the cattle, sheep or goats, and then there is a list of blemished animals that may not be offered or that are restricted in certain ways, and it is possible to view these as divided into 8 types of blemishes that are divided into three categories, including 6 kinds of blemishes in one category that are “blind, broken-limbed, or gashed, or has warts, mange or ringworm,” another category “with an extra or missing limb,” which can be viewed as essentially 1 kind of blemish of not having the normal number of limbs, and another category consisting of having [its testicles] “crushed – whether by hand or with an instrument, pulled loose, or severed,” which are essentially 1 kind of blemish. Thus there are a total to 6 + 1 + 1 = 8 kinds of blemished animals, and these can be said to correspond to the 8 strings of Tzitzis.

    This is followed by the 8 verse section (Leviticus 22:26-33) that starts with Hashem’s command “A bull, or a sheep, or a goat when it is born, then it shall be 7 days under its mother, but from the 8th day forward it will be acceptable for an offering made by fire to Hashem…” This time restriction, permitting them for offerings only from the 8th day, clearly corresponds to the idea of Milah, Circumcision, which is commanded to be done on the 8th day, and it also corresponds to the 8 strings of Tzitzis, which are acceptable, as a special form of offering, for attachment to the corners of our garments to connect us and bring us closer to Hashem, which is essentially the same idea as sacrifices.

    [The three types of animals mentioned in these verses, cattle, sheep or goats, are said by the commentators to correspond to various things, to which it may be added that in general they may also be said to correspond to the three paragraphs of Shma. Further, also in a general way, in the first paragraph of Shma itself they may correspond to the three types of love, “with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your might,” or alternatively to the Tefillin on the head, and Tefillin on the arm, and the Mezuzah on the door. In the second paragraph of Shma they may correspond in a general way to the three types of reward that are mentioned, i.e., the proper amount of rain (for people and animals, aside from crops, need water from rain to drink, especially in the middle-east, in Israel, and for cleansing and the like), and produce for people, and produce for animals, or alternatively they may correspond to the three types of produce for people that are mentioned, “your grain, your wine, and your oil,” or alternatively, again the Mitzvos of Tefillin and Mezuzah which are repeated in the second paragraph.In the third paragraph of Shma they may generally correspond to the three times the word Tzitzis occurs, or alternatively to the three parts of the Talis, which are the garment itself, the corners of the garment, and the strings.]

    This section in Emor continues (Leviticus 22:31-35), “And you shall keep My commandments, and do them,” which also has direct correspondence to the paragraph of Tzitzis which similarly states “and remember all the commandments of Hashem and do them,” and “remember and do all my commandments.” Then in Emor it says “And you shall not profane My holy name, but I will be sanctified among the children of Israel,” which also similar to this is stated in the paragraph of Shma, “and be sanctified unto your G-d.” Then in Emor it says, ending this section, “I am Hashem who sanctifies you. Who took you out of the land of Egypt to be your G-d, I am Hashem,” which also corresponds to what it says in the concluding verse of the paragraph of Tzitzis, “I am Hashem, your G-d, Who took you out of the land of Egypt to be o you G-d, I am Hashem your G-d.”

    There is also another paragraph in Emor that discusses the oil for the Menorah, Leviticus 24:1-4. It is interesting that the word שמן, Shemen, Oil, is related to the word שמנה, Shmonah, meaning the number Eight, and thus this is also relating to the Mitzvos of Milah and Tzitzis. It is also interesting that the word שמיני, Shmini, Eighth, is gematria 410, the same as the word שמע, Shma. In addition, the oil for the Menorah is specified to be שמן זית זך, Shemen Zayis Zoch, Pure Olive Oil, which is 8 letters, like the first two words of Shma, שמע ישראל, again reminiscent of Milah and Tzitzis, and the initials of these words, Shemen Zayis Zoch, שזז, Shin Zayin Zayin, are gematria 314, the same as the Divine Name ש-ד-י, Shadai, Almighty, which is also connected to the Shma, and to the Mitzvos in Shma, i.e., Tefillin and Mezuzah, and which is also connected to Bris Milah and to Tzitzis, as BE”H shall be explained.

    (To be continued.)

  33. In addition to all the special hints discussed above, the Divine Name ש-ד-י, Shin Dalet Yud, Shadai, is also hinted in the Shma and in the Mitzvos associated with the Shma:

    This is evident right in the first verse of Shma:

    The initial letter of the first word of the verse ש’מע, Sh’ma, the letter Shin, corresponds to the Shin of Shadai.

    Then at the end of the last word of the verse, the large letter Dalet of the word אחד’, EchoD, corresponds to the Dalet of Shadai.

    The final letter Yud of ShadaI is hinted in the 4 times the letter Yud appears in the 4 middle words of the verse:

    The initial letter Yud of the word י’שראל, Y’isroel, the Yud at the beginning of Y’HVH, the Yud in אלהי’ם, ElohIm, and the Yud at the beginning of Y’HVH.

    The initial letter Yud of the word י’שראל, Yisroel has in it the Divine Name El, and may itself be considered a Divine Name due to the Divinity in Yisroel and in Torah, since the Jewish soul is considered “a portion of G-d above,” and Yisroel is initials “Y’esh Sh’ishim R’ibo O’siyos L’Torah,” “There are 600,000 letters in the Torah.”

    The letter Yud of Shadai may also be symbolized by the occurrences of the letter Yud, in order, after the Dalet of Echod, in the next verses of the first paragraph of the Shma, where the letter Yud occurs 15 more times, the first of which are also as parts of Divine Names:

    The next letter Yud is 8 letters after the Dalet of Echod, the first letter of the Name Y’HVH.

    The next letter Yud is 15 letters after the Dalet, in the Name א-להי’ך, Elohe’cho, Your G-d.

    The next letter Yud is 42 letters after the Dalet, in the first word of the next verse, והי’ו, V’hoYu, And It Shall Be, a word which has in it the letters YHV of YHVH.

    The next letter Yud is 48 letters after the Dalet, in the next word הדברי’ם, HadevorI’m, The (Hashem’s) Words.

    The next letter Yud is 60 letters after the Dalet, at the end of the word אנכי, AnochI, I Am, also referring to Hashem, and in some contexts considered a Divine Name in its own right.

    Afterward there are 10 more times the letter Yud occurs in the first paragraph of Shma.

    All together the letter Yud occurs 4 + 15 = 19 times in the first paragraph of Shma. These occurrences of the letter Yud and the numbers associated with them are significant, and therefore they may be understood to correspond to the letter Yud of the hinted complete Name Shadai at the beginning of the Shma.

    In the second paragraph of Shma the first letter Yud is the 3rd letter of the first word והי’ה, V’hoyoh, And It Shall Be, which has all four letters YHVH of the Divine Name only in a different order, and this letter Yud may also be said to correspond to the letter Yud which is the 3rd letter of the Name Shadai.

    All together in the second paragraph of Shma there are 42 occurrences of the letter Yud, and thus in the first and second paragraphs together there are 19 + 42 = 61 occurrences of the letter Yud. This is significant since 61 is the gematria of initials Alef Samech as in the words א’ין ס’וף, Ein Sof, Unending and Infinite, another attribute and Name for Hashem. Also the small gematria of 61 is 6 + 1 = 7, corresponding to the 6 days of the week and Shabbos the 7th day, and also 61 is the 18th prime number.

    In the third paragraph of Shma the letter Yud occurs 35 times, making the total for all three paragraphs 19 + 42 + 35 = 96, which this too is significant since 96 = 2 x 48, and similarly 96 = 3 x 32, and 96 = 8 x 12, etc., and these numbers too are also very significant for the topics we are discussing.

    It is also possible to say that in general the three paragraphs of Shma correspond to the three letters of Shadai:

    The first paragraph of Shma, starting with a letter Shin, corresponds to the Shin of Shadai.

    The second paragraph of Shma, starting with a 4 letter word that has all 4 letters of the primary Name of Hashem, YHVH, corresponds to the Dalet of Shadai.

    The third paragraph of Shma, which starts with words וי’אמר י’-ה-ו-ה, VaYomer YHVH, where the Divine Name Y’HVH, which starts with a Yud, is the primary speaker and subject (unlike the first two paragraphs which are Moshe Rabbeinu’s words to Yisroel), and this too can be said to correspond to the Yud of Shadai.

    Alternatively, even the first word of the third paragraph, VaYomer, may be considered as starting with a letter Yud since the only letter that precedes it is the conjunctive letter Vov, “And,” so its beginning may be understood as “And Yud,” i.e., the Yud that corresponds to the final Yud in the Name Shadai.

    Regarding the number of occurrences of the letter Yud in the Shma it is possible to add:

    Each of the special 4 letter Yud’s in the first verse of Shma may be viewed as having greater significance than the other letter Yud’s in the Shma (just as the two letters in the same verse, Ayin and Dalet, are written as larger than normal letters due to extra intentions in them), and it is understandable this could be so since this first verse is like the Kesser, Crown, for all three paragraphs of Shma, and therefore it is fitting to give it special doubly important status.

    Accordingly, by counting each Yud in the first verse as doubled, i.e., for example, by considering it both in its revealed state and as it is in its root, therefore the gematria for each of these Yud’s may be counted as not just 10 but as 20.

    Alternatively, if each of these four letter Yud’s is considered as spelled out fully, יוד, Yud Vov Dalet, they also may be counted as having a gematria of 10 + 6 + 4 = 20, again twice the normal value of 10.

    Alternatively, these letter Yud’s may be considered as permuted into the adjacent letter Cuf, with gematria 20, as is done when writing the shifted letters for the three clearly Divine Names in this first verse of Shma, YHVH Elo-hai-nu YHVH, are written as כוזו במוכסז כוזו, in the code of being shifted over one letter more in the Alef Beis, as is traditionally done when these mystical letters are written the reverse side of the Mezuzah parchment with the Shma.

    When this is done it comes out that the total gematria of all the letter Yud’s in all three paragraphs of Shma would be 92 regular level Yud’s with gematria 10 plus 4 Kesser level Yud’s with gematria 20, yielding 92 x 10 = 920, plus 4 x 20 = 80, for a sum of 920 +80 = 1000, which exactly corresponds to the total 1000 letters in these three paragraphs of the Shma.

    Alternatively, instead of doubling the 4 Yud’s in the first verse, it is possible to count 4 missing Yud’s that are implied, but not written in the text, in the third paragraph of Shma:

    The first 3 of these 4 may be included in one’s intentions because 3 times the word ציצת, Tzitzis, is written with only one letter Yud, however our sages made a point of saying that the gematria of the word Tzitzis should be calculated as if it were written with two letter Yud’s, ציצי’ת, i.e., 90 + 10 + 90 + 10 + 400 = 600, so certainly we may attach other significance to these three words Tzitzis, and to a certain extent count them in our mental calculations.

    The 4th missing letter Yud may possibly be implied from another saying of our sages on the words וראיתם אתו, U’r’esem Oso, “and you shall see it,” which in the plain interpretation refers to seeing the string of the Tzitzis that is dyed blue, however our sages have interpreted the word Oso as if it means that by wearing Tzitzis you so-to-speak “shall see Him,” i.e., the holiness of Hashem. Based on this, and on the fact that it is Hashem’s own words that are being transmitted in this passage, it is possible to have intention in this word Oso as if were written with a Yud instead of a Vov at the end, אתי, OsI, so that the phrase has a meaning of “and you shall see Me,” i.e., that by wearing Tzitzis one may come to experience a direct personal relationship with Hashem, especially as symbolized by the intended letter Yud.

    It is noteworthy that the Divine Name Shadai occurs 9 times in the Torah, 4 times in Nevi’im, and 35 times in Kesuvim (2 times in Ruth, 2 times in Psalms and 31 times in Job), for a total of 9 + 4 + 35 = 48 times. These 48 Scriptural occurrences of the Name Shadai also correspond to the first paragraph of Shma with its 48 words.

    In the Torah, in addition to the 9 times the Name Shadai is written, there is also another 5 times that the name of the leader of the tribe of Reuben, Elitzur son of Shda’or, is mentioned, and the Name Shadai may be part of his father’s name שדיאור,Shda’or, meaning “Shadai is Light.”

    There is also 1 possibly related word שדין, Shadon (Job 19:29), with an additional final letter Nun, that is written with a letter Yud but read as with a letter Vov, that may also be related to the Name Shadai.

    Counting those extra times the Name Shadai appears in these words, that would bring the total Scriptural occurrences of the Name Shadai to 48 + 5 + 1 = 54, which is the number of words in the first paragraph of Shma when counting the 6 words of the silent verse, Boruch Shem Kefod Malchuso L’olam Voed.

    The Name Shadai, represents Almighty G-d, who is Infinite, Transient, Supernatural and Super-rational, and symbolic of this the gematria of Shadai, 314, is associated with the mathematical constant Pi, which begins with digits 3.14, and continues forever with an infinite series of decimal places consisting of seeming random digits. Pi is an irrational (super-rational) number and a transient number, and it is the basis of the formulas for calculating the circumference of a circle, the area of a circle, and so much more, which is why it is so essential and vital for the creation and measurement the universe and nature, and therefore its association with the Name Shadai even to us mere mortals seems to be entirely fitting.

    [In The Genesis Prayer, chapter 18, under the caption “G-d in Pi,” Ezra writes that the Name Shaddai is found 10 times in the Torah, whereas as said above there are only 9 times that it appears in Torah.

    It seems that perhaps what was counted as the 10th time was the word שָׂדָי, Sodai (Devorim 32:13), where the three consecutive letters of the word, Sin Dalet Yud, with a letter Sin instead of Shin, form a different word that means “of the field” (“He carried them over the earth’s highest places, to feast on the crops of the field”), or according to some, “of the spoilers” (“to feast on the crops of the spoilers”). There are other instances too in Neviim and Kesuvim that these three letters, Shin or Sin Dalet Yud, are written together as a word or as part of a word, however since in the plain meaning of the text these are not Divine Names, therefore they are not included in the numbers given in the discussion here.]

    (To be continued.)

  1. The connection between the Name Shadai and the Shma explained above makes it easier to understand the association of Tefillin and Mezuzah with the Name Shadai, since the first two paragraphs of the Shma are written on the parchments placed inside of them.

    In addition, for both Tefillin and Mezuzah, the connection to the Name Shadai is more pronounced since the letters Shin Dalet Yud of Shadai are also physically symbolized and visible for us to see even outside the cases of the parchments.

    This is seen in Tefillin since the letter Shin of Shadai is embossed on the leather box of the Tefillin that is placed upon one’s forehead. The letter Dalet of Shadai is formed by the shape of the knot in the strap at that secures the Tefillin in place at back base of one’s head. The letter Yud of Shadai is formed by the shape of the knot in the strap of the second box of Tefillin that binds the Tefillin to one’s arm.

    In addition, the way that the strap of the Tefillin is wound around one’s arm, hand and fingers, also corresponds to the Name Shadai. The shape of the letter Shin is formed in the way the strap is wound around one’s upper arm. (Then there are seven additional wrappings on one’s lower arm.) Then the shape of the Dalet is formed from the way the strap is wrapped on the back of the hand. Then the shape of the letter Yud is formed from the way the strap is wound around the fingers.

    Seforim explain why the letter Shin is embossed on the head Tefillin, and why not just one, but two letter Shins are made, and why one is a seemingly regular Shin, formed by 3 letter Vov’s joined at their base, and why the other is more unusual, being formed by 4 letter Vov’s joined at their base. The explanation is that all of these things are intended to symbolize the way that the holy letters of the Ten Commandments were engraved on the Tablets, since the Tablets and the Ten Commandments are also reflected in the paragraphs of Shma and in the Tefillin.

    An interesting idea brought in Seforim explains that the two letter Shin’s embossed on the head Tefillin hint to, and are a reminder of, all the 613 Mitzvos: Take the gematria of the two letters Shin’s, 300 + 300 = 600. Then take the number of the Vov components of the two Shin’s, 3 for one Shin and 4 for the other, i.e., 3 + 4 = 7. Then take the meaning of the word spelled by these two letter Shin’s, i.e., the word שש, Sheish, meaning the number 6. Then sum all of these hints together to get 600 + 7 + 6 = 613.

    The verse “And the nations of the world will see that God’s name is called upon you and will fear you” (Devarim 28:10), is said by our sages to refer to the wearing of the Tefillin on the head (Talmud Menachot 35b). The letter Shin on the Tefillin is symbolic of G-d’s Name, and this is hinted in this verse, since the initials of the words ש’ם י’הוה נ’קרא, Sh’em Y’HVH N’ikrah, “the Name of Hashem is called (upon you),” are the letters Shin Yud Nun, which spell out the word שין, Shin, which is the name of the letter Shin written out.

    However why is the letter Shin of Shadai used for this purpose, and not a letter of YHVH itself, for that is the Divine Name written in this verse, and also it is the Name that was embossed on the Tzitz, the headband ornament worn by the Kohan Godol, not the Name Shadai. Why not the same for Tefillin, and why is the Shin of the Name Shadi used instead?

    Probably the answer it that the Name Y-H-V-H is considered too holy to be expressed outwardly in our everyday usage for wearing Tefillin, especially outside the Sanctuary, and therefore instead the letter Shin of the Name Shadai is used. Additionally, the letter Shin also stands for the word ש’ם, Shem, meaning Name, and it is understood that the Name indicated, although outwardly the Name Shadai, however inwardly it is also identified with the Name Hashem.

    Moreover, it is important to note that even in the letter Shin, and indeed in all the letters of the Name Shadai, also hint to the Holy Name YHVH:

    The letter Shin, gematria 300, is also the gematria of the Name YHVH when its four letters are permeated through the A-T Ba-Sh code, such that from Yud Heh Vov Heh they transform into the letters Mem Tzadi Peh Tzadi, and these sum to 40 + 90 + 80 + 90 = 300, like the letter Shin of Shadai.

    The letter Dalet, gematria 4, stands for the 4 letters of the Name YHVH.

    The letter Yud too signifies the Name Y’HVH, since it is the initial letter of that Name, and also because Yud, gematria 10, stands for the 10 letters of the Divine Names MaH, 45, SaG, 63, and AB, 72, which are various ways of spelling out the four letters of YHVH in expansive ways, the Yud being spelled with 3 letters, the Heh with 2 letters, the Vov with 3 letters, and the final Heh with 2 letters, thus each of these three expansive Divine Names is spelled with a total of 3 + 2 + 3 + 2 = 10 letters. [The Name BaN, 52, another way of expansively writing out the four letters of YHVH, is considered to represent a lower level of G-dliness then the other three Names, and it is spelled out with only 9 letters, since for the Name BaN the letter Vov is spelled with only 2 letters.]

    Based on what was explained the connection of the Name Shadai to the Mezuzah on our doorposts is also more understood, since in the first two paragraphs of the Shma are also written in the Mezuzah. What was explained also enhances our understanding of why traditionally the Name Shadai is written on the outside of the Mezuzah parchment, where it may be seen even when the scroll is rolled up, and also reinforces the association of expression “Sh’omer D’alsos Y’isroel,” that G-d is “Guardian of the doors of Israel,” an acronym of Shin Dalet Yud, spelling the Name Shadai, referring to the protection that is merited to through the fulfillment of the Mitzvah of Mezuzah.

    The idea of the protection given by the Mezuzah is also an idea inherent in the verse (Psalm 91:1) “Whoever sits in the refuge of the Most High, he shall dwell in the shadow of Shadai, the Almighty,” to which we merit through fulfillment of the Mitzvah of affixing the Mezuzah to our doorposts, drawing the connection to the Name Shadai into our dwellings, to permeate everything we do, and with this foundation we have the strength and ability, as we say in the Oleinu prayer, L’takein Olam B’Malchus Shadai, “To perfect the world though the sovereignty of Shadai, the Almighty…”

    (To be continued.)

  2. The connection of the Name Shadai to the essential Mitzvah of Bris Milah, circumcision, is evident based on the first time the Name Shaddai appears in the Torah, in the introduction to Hashem’s commandment of circumcision to our forefather Avrohom:

    “Avrom was ninety-nine years old, and Hashem appeared to Avrom and said to him ‘I am E-l Shadai, G-d Almighty, walk before me and be whole. I will make a covenant between Me and you, and I will increase your numbers very much… As far as I am concerned, here is My covenant with you, you shall be the father of a horde of nations. No longer shall you be called Avram. Your name shall become AvroHom, for I have set you up as the father of a horde of nations… As far as you are concerned, you must keep My covenant… You must circumcise every male…” (Genesis 17:1-24).

    The connection of Bris Milah to the Name Shadai is further evident in that the Brit Milah itself is considered the inscription of the Yud of the Name Shadai on one’s body. This is stated in Midrash Tanhuma Tzav 14 (cf. parallel passages in Tazri‘a 5 and Shemini 5), as quoted in Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Shaddai :

    “The Holy, blessed be he, has put his name on them so they would enter the garden of Eden. And what is the name and the seal that he had put on them? It is “Shaddai”. The letter Shin He put in the nose, Dalet on the hand, whereas Yod on the circumcised membrum. Accordingly, when one goes to his eternal home (Ecclesiastes 12:5), there is an angel appointed in the garden of Eden who picks up every son who is circumcised and brings him there. And those who are not circumcised? Although there are two letters of the name “Shaddai” present on them, namely Shin from the nose and Dalet from the hand, the Yod… is missing. Therefore it hints at a demon (Heb., Shed), which brings him down to Gehenna.”

    A lifetime of devotion to Hashem is initiated by the Bris and the connection to the Names of Hashem including the Name Shadai. In general it has been explained the the letters of Hashem’s Name Y-H-V-H are reflected in the human body, for as the Torah states man was made in the image of G-d. One’s head is shaped like a letter י, Yud, one’s two arms and shoulders are shaped like a letter ה, Heh (the dominant arm, usually the right, corresponds to the solid right side of the Heh, while the weaker arm, usually the left, corresponds to the left side of the Heh where there is a gap in the line), the trunk of one’s body is shaped like a letter ו, Vov, and one’s two legs and pelvis are shaped like the final letter ה, Heh (the stronger leg is like the stronger line on the right side of the Heh and the weaker leg is like the line with a gap on the left side of the Heh).

    In addition, IIRC it is brought somewhere, that when worshiping Hashem the human body forms shapes that are representative of the letters of the Name Shadai: When one raises one’s arms upward in prayer the shape of one’s two upraised arms with one’s head in the middle resembles the shape of the letter Shin. When one bows at the waist the shape of one’s body resembles the shape of the letter Dalet. When one does a complete bow, kneeling to the ground and brings one’s head down as well, the shape of one’s body shrinks and resembles the shape of the letter Yud.

    As noted before, in the first verse of Shma, the word אחד, Echod, One, gematria 13, is composed of letters Alef and Dalet with gematria 4 + 1 = 5, and Ches, with gematria 8, and thus the word Echod is symbolic of Tzitzis, with its 5 knots and 8 strings. There is a similar connection of the word Echod to the concept of a Bris, when one enters the covenant of circumcision to become attached and united with the One, Hashem, and the same numbers 5 and 8 that have prominent roles in the Tzitzis, also have prominent roles in the Bris Milah. This is evident because circumcision is commanded to be done on the 8th day of a baby’s life, and it was first commanded to our patriarch Avrohom together with the changing of his name from אברם, Avrom to אברה’ם, AvroHom, by the addition of the letter Heh, gematria 5, to his name (and similarly the baby is given his Hebrew name that futher attaches him to Hashem at the Bris Milah ceremony).

    The change in Avrohom’s name increased the full gematria value of his name from 243 to 248, and the strengthened bond with Hashem through circumcision gave him the completion he needed to control all the 248 limbs of his body. Thus the numbers connected with Avrohom’s covenant with Hashem are 8 and 5, the same numbers that are symbolic of Tzitzis, and as with the resulting gematria of Avrohom’s name, 248, so too it is that with the recital of the third paragraph of Shma we complete our recital of the corresponding 248 words of the Shma.

    It is also relevant to this discussion that the 13 essential Principles of Faith, famously enumerated by Rambam, are also hinted in the word Echod of the Shma, gematria 13, and these 13 Principles of Faith also divide into two basic categories of 5 and 8:

    The first 5 Principles of Faith deal directly with Hashem, for as commentaries note, the Rambam himself in his Hilchos Teshuva, chapter 3, halacha 7, groups together the first five principles in this first category – belief in G-d, that He is One, that He has no body or form, that He is beyond time being First and Last and the Creator of everything ex-nihilo, and that He alone is fitting to be worshiped.

    The following 8 Principles of Faith deal with Hashem’s interaction with man – He grants the gift of prophecy, His prophecy to Moshe Rabbeinu is greatest of all, He gave the Torah to the people of Israel, His Torah is immutable forever, He watches over the deeds of men, He gives reward and punishment as deserved, and at the appointed time He will send Moshiach, and He will revive the dead.

    Similarly with regard to the 13 Attributes of Mercy (Exodus 34:6-7), it may be possible to say that the first 5 Attributes, “Hashem, Hashem, E-l, Rachum (Compassionate One), and Chanun (Gracious One),” are direct Names and more intrinsic titles for G-d, while the remaining 8 Attributes more involve the way He interacts with man, “Slow to anger, Abundant in Kindness and Truth, Preserver of kindness for thousands of generations, Forgiver of iniquity, willful sin, and error, and Who cleanses.”

    (To be continued.)

    Note: There are a few more comments I would like to post here in this series on the Shma, that are mostly drafted already and just waiting for some final editing. Since a lot of effort went into this I decided include my last name, and soon I will also give a way for any reader to contact me with any questions, comments or support in connection with what I have written. Thank you again Ezra for providing this important blog and forum for Kabbalah Secrets to be revealed.

    A final note about this Shabbos: This Shabbos will be the 17th of Tamuz, 40 days after Shavuos, the day 3330 years ago that the first set of Holy Tablets were brought down by Moshe Rabbeinu from Mount Sinai, and then broken in response to the sin of the Golden Calf. It is necessary to try to repent and repair that sin which produced a stain on all the generations, and similarly for each one to repent and repair the damage caused by his or her sins and misdeeds. The fast of the 17th of Tamuz this year is pushed off because of Shabbos, and let us hope that with the speedy arrival of Moshiach this fast day and all others too will be transformed instead into holidays and joyous celebrations. Good Shabbos!

  3. The 5 and 8 relationship of the tzizit ties (excuse the pun) into the 5 to the power of 8 total words, letters, and verses in the Torah and the ratio 5/8 or .625, reprsenting H’Keter (625) and the square root (625^2) of the 390,625 total words, letters, and verses in the Torah. Using the right consciousness we wrap ourselves in the full Torah when we put on the tzizit.

  4. That is very interesting, seemingly impossible to attribute to mere chance.

    As I’ve stressed a number of times 5 + 8 equals the significant number 13, and in addition their multiple, 5 x 8 =40, another significant number in Torah, which the number 40 also corresponds to the small gematria of 13, 1 + 3 = 4.

    Also interestingly 625 = 5 to the 4th power, 5 x 5 x 5 x 5 = 625, or when viewed another way 625 is 25 to the 2nd power, 25 x 25 = 625 (there are 25 letters in the first verse of Shma). Note too that the first two digits of 625, 6 and 2, sum to 6 + 2 = 8, and the last digit is 5, thus again demonstrating the 8 – 5 pattern, and again the small gematria is 6 + 2 + 5 = 13, and 1 + 3 = 4.

    As for the number 390,625, it seems that the 390 part corresponds to the 39 “coils” or “windings” that are customarily made in the Tzitzis, as I’ll explain very shortly in my next comment.

  5. In addition to what is explained about Tefillin, Mezuzah and Bris Milah, so too regarding Talis and Tzitzis, there is an identifiable connection to the Name Shadai:

    The letter Shin, the first letter of the Name Sh’adai, is the first letter of the word ש’מים, Sh’omayim, heaven, and correspondingly the Talis, the garment of the Tzitzis, covers and surrounds the wearer like the heavens, and this corresponds to what we say when we done the Talis in emulation of Hashem, “Bless Hashem O my soul; Hashem my G-d You are very great; You have donned majesty and splendor; cloaked in light as with a garment, stretching out the heavens like a curtain” (Psalm 104:1-2). In addition, the blue string of the Tzitzis is also said to be a reminder of the blue sky of heaven.

    The letter Shinis is gematria 300, and that also corresponds to Tzitzis, with gematria 600, since 2 x 300= 600, which perhaps is doubled since it is inclusive of “the heaven and the heaven of heavens.” In addition it is possible that the gematria of Tzitzis is two times that of the letter Shin in order to represent the two kinds of Talesim with Tzitzis that we wear, the Talis Koton, the small Talis generally worn all day under one’s shirt, and the Talis Godol, the large Talis worn over all one’s clothes, especially when praying the morning prayers or when representing the congregation.

    The letter Shin of Shadai and of Shomayim also hint to the שמש, Shamesh, the sun that it the great minister in the sky which serves to illuminate the sky and influence the earth, moon and planets, and similarly with regard to the Tzitzis, the longest of the strings is called the שמש, Sh’amesh string, which so-to-speak serves the other strings, being wound around them in the sections between the knots, to further bind the strings together and to decorate them and beautify their appearance.

    In particular, in the most prevalent tradition for tying Tzitzis the Shamash string is coiled for a total of 39 times between the 5 knots of the Tzitzis. Between the first knot and the second knot there are 7 windings. Between the second and third knots there are 8 windings, for a total of 7 + 8 = 15, hinting to the Name Yud Heh. Between the third and fourth knots there are 11 windings, for a total of 7 + 8 + 11 = 26, hinting to the Name Hashem. Between the fourth and fifth knots there are 13 windings, for a total of 7 + 8 + 11 + 13 = 39, hinting to Hashem Echod. These 39 windings correspond to the gematria of the word שמים, Shomayim, heaven, which is 300 + 40 + 10 + 40 = 390 = 39 x 10. In addition the word שמש, Shemesh, is gematria 300 + 40 + 300 = 640, which this is the same as 8 x 8 x 10, or 2 x 32 x 10, etc., and these are also significant numbers pertinent to this discussion.

    [Regarding these 39 windings, see this article on the Jewish Stack Exchange where an answer by Micha Berger explains:

    “In the gemara’s system, there are 7 to 13 groups of windings. And it sounds like each group was 3 windings. (Majority opinion, Rav Natrunai Gaon reads it as “once, twice, three times, [and so on]”.) Rashi, Tosafos and the Moredechai say that the gemara is specific to winding tzitzis with techeiles, and not applicable to us. But either way, it shows there is some kind of significance to 39 windings because it’s 3 * 13. No “why” there, just an indication the number is significant to the mitzvah of tzitzis.

    But 39 also comes up in at least two other contexts: the maximum number of lashes the court may give as corporal punishment (if the person is healthy like an ox, and could take the maximum), as well as the number of melakhos, categories of constructive labor, prohibited on Shabbos. Lashes are meted out in groups of three, separated by doctor inspections.

    “7, 8, 11, 13, though, closely matches the way the 39 prohibited activities of Shabbos divide up. The first 11 melakhos (Shabbos 7:2) describe the steps necessary to grow wheat, turn it into flour, and make the showbread. The next 13 are about preparing the cloth of the curtains of the Mishkan, from the wool to the dying to the weaving and sowing. Seven melakhos relate to preparing hides into leather, and the last 8 are simply “none of the above.”

    “As I wrote in another answer recently, Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan explains how 40 represents creation, and thus 39 is the number that indicates human efforts to imitate Divine Creation. (The 40th being creation ex nihilo, something from nothing, which people are incapable of doing.) And so, the person who acts to undermine the purpose of creation gets 39 lashes, and to commemorate resting from creation, we rest from 39 acts. Ashkenazi tzitzis therefore also invokes creation; having the same 39 divided into the same groups as the melakhos cannot be coincidental.”]

    In addition the letter Shin, which spelled out is שין, is connected with the word שינים, Shinayim, teeth, which are 32 in number, and correspond to the 8 x 4 = 32 strings of the Tzitzis.

    With regard to the other letters of the Name Shadai, the letter Dalet is related to the root word דל, Dal, meaning poor and humble, and in general this correspond to the lowly earth, which receives from the heavens. Also the letter Dalet is gematria 4, hinting to the 4 corners of the earth, which are symbolized by the 4 corners of the Talis. In addition, the Dalet may symbolize all the 8 strings on each corner, since in their source the 8 strings are originally just 4 strings that are folded over into two.

    Further, the letter Dalet, when spelled out to its fullest extent, as is occasionally done, with an extra letter Yud, is דלית, meaning poor and destitute, is gematria 444, and with 1 for each of the four letters and 1 for the word itself adds to 444 + 4 + 1 = 449, which is the gematria of the word טלית, Talis.

    The word Talis can also be seen to consist of two parts, the first part טל, Tal, is gematria 39, alluding to the 39 windings, and the second part ית, Yud Tuf, gematra 410, the same as the word Shma and other significant words as explained above. The word Tal also means the dew of heaven that condenses on the earth, and that too hints to the intention of the Talis and Tzitzis, to draw the Divine flow and influence from heaven to earth.

    In addition, the word Talis, with 1 more for the Kolel, is gematria 450, which is 10 x 45, ten times the Name מה, MaH, and when summed with 150, which is 10 x 15, i.e., ten times the Name Yud Heh, and then together these two Divine Names, taken to the full extent, times 10, sum to (45 + 15) x 10 = 600, the gematria of the word ציצית, Tzitzis.

    The letter Yud of Shadai, gematria 10, is symbolized by the 5 knots that tie the strings of Tzitzis to the corners of the garment, because in reality each of these 5 knots is actually a double knot, i.e., one knot folded upon another, and therefore when examined in detail they are seen to be 5 x 2 = 10, the gematria of the letter Yud, also representative of the 10 Sefiros. Further, the letter Yud spelled out is יוד, gematria 20, and this corresponds to the total number of double knots of the Tzitzis, 5 double knots on the 4 corners of the garment, and 5 x 4 = 20.

    In general it is possible to say that the Shin, which as explained above is connected to the concept of heaven, is symbolized by a curved circle, and thus the heavens appear to our perception as a great circular dome above our heads. The Dalet, connected to the concept of earth, may be symbolized by a straight edged square, and to our naked eyes’ perception the earth appears as a flat surface. The Yud, which joins the Shin and Dalet together to form a complete Divine Name, is shaped like a tiny point, symbolizing the points of intersection and interaction between the disparate realms of heaven and earth, the circle and the square. This therefore connects to the idea that Shadai, the Almighty, is all powerful and omnipotent throughout the universe – as our sages explain, the Name Shadai is reflected in the phrase ש’אמר לעולמו ד’י’, She’omar L’olomo Di, that describes the Almighty as “He Who said to His world ‘Enough,’” and in the phrase ש’יש ד’י’ באלקותי לכל בריה, “He Who has sufficient power in His G-dliness for every created being” – and He creates and sustains everything in heaven and earth and every point of interaction between them.

    In the third paragraph of Shma, in connection with Tzitzis, there is also a special hint to the Name Shadai, for as it says in this passage, through fulfillment of the Mitzvah of Tzitzis, and all the Mitzvos the Tzitzis reminds us of, we achieve a level of קד’ש’י’ם, Kedoshim, “and you shall be Sanctified unto your G-d.” In the middle of the word Kedoshim is a letter Shin, to the right of it a letter Dalet, and to the left of it a letter Yud, the three letters that together spell the Name Shadai. Further, the gematria of the whole word Kedoshim is 100 + 4 + 300 + 10 + 40 = 454, a number which is composed of the middle digit 5, and two times the digit 4 at the beginning and end, summing to 4 + 4 = 8, thus again this word again hints to the special relationship of the numbers 5 and 8 that are evident in the Mitzvah of Tzitzis.

    In addition, the small gematria of the Name Shadai, is 3 + 1 + 4 = 8, and similarly the small gematria of the Name Hashem, is 2 + 6 = 8, and thus in this method too these Divine Names have a relationship to the Bris on the 8th day and to the Tzitzis with its 8 strings.

    (To be continued.)

  6. As indicated by the two words, the Talis with Tzitzis consists of 2 sections, the Talis garment and the Tzitzis strings. It is possible to say that Talis and Tzitzis correspond to the 2 letters of the Name Yud Heh, or to the 4 letters of the Name Yud Heh Vov Heh as they are subdivided into two sections.

    The Talis and Tzitzis each further subdivide into 2 sections each, for a total of 4 sections, the garment, the corners of the garment, the knotted part of the strings, and the unknotted part of the strings that hang loose. These 4 sections correspond to the 4 letters of the Name Yud Heh Vov Heh.

    The Talis garment also may be further subdivided into 6 sections, since it has a front and a back, a right and a left, and an inside and an outside.

    Similarly with regard to the Tzitzis strings, the knots of the Tzitzis subdivide the strings into 6 sections: First there is 1 section is between the corner of the garment and the first knot (which needs to be checked regularly to ensure that none of the strings there are broken which would render the Tzitzis unkosher). Then there are 4 sections formed in between the five knots, which these 4 sections correspond to the 4 letters of the Name Y-H-V-H. Lastly comes 1 more section after the fifth knot, consisting of the 8 loose hanging strings.

    Based on this understanding it is possible to find a hint to the 248 positive Mitzvos directly in the numbers associated with the elements of Tzitzis.

    [In an earlier comment on this post, dated June 1, 2018 at 1:34 pm, I already explained that the 365 negative commandments are hinted in the third paragraph of Shma, which describes the commandment of Tzitzis, since its 5 verses, 69 words, and 287 letters, sum to 5 + 69 + 287 = 361, and together with the 1 word אמת, Emes, and its 3 letters, which in our prayers immediately follows and is joined with this paragraph, sum to 361 + 1 + 3 = 365.]

    To find a hint to the 248 positive Mitzvos, first examine the top part of the Tzitzis and realize that the 5 knots of the Tzitzis are actually double knots, as explained in my previous comment, and in many places, and thus they may be counted as 10 single knots and identified with the number 10.

    To this add 1 for the section of the Tzitzis between the corner of the garment and the first knot, and 4 for the four sections between the first knot and the last knot, to get 10 + 1 + 4 = 15. This number in and of itself is significant because 15 is the gematria of the Divine Name Yud Heh, and also the first half of the Name Y-H-V-H.

    Then add to this 8 for the 8 loose hanging strings after the last knot, to obtain the sum 15 + 8 = 23.

    [Number 23 is the 9th prime number, and it is featured in Ezra’s next post, The Final Sequence, as the 2nd number in the sequence, and in a comment there, dated May 24, 2018 at 10:48 pm, I noted regarding “the blessing of the Cohenim” that the 3 verses of this blessing are composed of 3, 5, and 7 words respectively, a total of 15 words, and with the 8 words of the next verse, “V’somu Es Shmi Al Bnei Yisroel V’Ani Avoracheim,” also sum to 15 + 8 = 23. I also noted there, on June 3, 2018 at 8:59 pm, that 23 corresponds to the Mispar Bone’eh or Revu’a gematria of the word אחד, Echod, 1 + (1 + 8) + (1 + 8 + 4) = 23. In addition, as Ezra explains in another post, that he most recently highlighted, http://kabbalahsecrets.com/?p=3677, the number 23 (or more precisely 23.4) is also the number of degrees of tilt of the earth’s axis, and thus plays a significant role in the progression of the earth relative to the heavens. Number 23 is also the reverse of 32, which is also relevant to this discussion about Tzitzis with 32 strings. In addition, the small gematria of 23 is 2 + 3 = 5.]

    Further, as explained in my previous comment, traditionally one of the strings, called the Shamesh, is wound a total of 39 “windings” or “coils” around the 7 other strings in the 4 sections between the 5 knots. Traditionally 7 windings are made around the strings in the section between the first two knots, 8 windings around the strings in the section between the second and third knots, 11 windings around the strings in the section between the third and fourth knots, and 13 windings around the strings in the section between the fourth and fifth knots (totaling 7 + 8 + 11 + 13 = 39).

    It comes out that the Tzitzis consist of 8 strings, plus 10 knots, plus 5 sections between the garment and the fifth knot, plus 39 windings in the sections between the knots, and all together these sum to 8 + 10 + 5 + 39 = 62.

    [When multiplied by ten, 62 x 10 = 620, which is the gematria of the word כתר, Keser, Crown, the highest Sefirah, connected with the 620 letters of the Ten Commandments, and corresponding to the 613 Mitzvos of the Torah plus the 7 Mitzvos of the Rabbis. The number 62 is also the reverse of the number 26, the regular gematria of the Divine Name, and likewise has a small gematria of 6 + 2 = 8.]

    Since the same number of strings, knots, sections, and windings, are replicated on all 4 corners of the Talis, therefore to calculate the total number multiply by 4 to get 62 x 4 = 248, which this corresponds perfectly with the 248 positive commandments, the 248 limbs in the body, the 248 of words of the congregation’s recital of the Shma, the gematria 248 of the name of our patriarch אברהם, Avrohom, and so much more.

    (To be continued.)

  7. By understanding the process of making the strings for Tzitzis another hint to all 613 Mitzvos, the sum of the 248 positive commandments plus the 365 negative commandments, can also be identified.

    The threads that are used for making the strings of Tzitzis have to be twisted together to form thicker strings. This process, called Shezirah, twisting, requires combining a minimum of two threads twisted together to form the strings, and what is considered the optimal custom is to make Tzitzis strings that are Kaful Shemonah, composed of 8 threads twisted together.

    It comes out that if one wants to be more specific there are not just 8 strings per corner of the Talis, but more fully and optimally there are 8 x 8 = 64 threads on each corner of the garment. (The 4 x 8 = 32 strings for the entire garment therefore are composed of 64 x 4 = 256 threads.)

    Similarly with regard to the windings that are made around the sections between the knots. Previously it was explained that there are 39 windings, however additionally there is a tradition to tighten these windings by making loops around them. According to a Sefardic custom a loop is made after each of the 39 winding, producing a protrusion that appears like a spine that helps hold the windings tightly together. It comes out then that the total for the number of windings plus the number of loops is 39 + 39 = 78.

    According to the Arizal and others the custom is not to make a loop for each winding, but rather one loop for every 3 windings, for a total of 13 loops around the 39 windings. However even according to this custom it is possible to say that within each group of 3 windings looped together the order of each winding within its loop can be seen as a special quality, i.e., each winding is either the first, second or third of its looped set, and therefore not only can we identify each winding as an element for itself, but we may also identify its position within its threefold loop as another independent element. This is even more evident since the loops are ideally made in a way such that they line up on one side of the Tzitzis like a spine, so that when looking at the windings from one side just the 39 windings are visible, while when looking at the Tzitzis from the other side, the side with the spine, what is observed is the 13 loops with 3 wrappings in each one.

    [Sometimes this is even more pronounced due to there being 7, 8, 11, and 13 windings for the four sections between the five double knots, and these numbers are not divisible by 3. Therefore for example the 3rd of the 13 loops has to be divided up such that the first of its three windings is located at the end of the first section, between double knots one and two, while the remaining two windings for this loop are located at the beginning of the second section, between double knots two and three. Similarly the 9th of the 13 loops has its first two windings at the end of the third section, between double knots three and four, while its third winding is at the beginning of the fourth section, between double knots four and five.]

    It comes out then that even according to the Arizal custom we may also identify as individual elements not just the 39 windings themselves, but also the number of positions these windings take within each loop. Therefore the total number of these winding elements can be viewed as summing to 39 + (13 x 3) = 78.

    [The number 78 is also significant for various other reasons as well, and it is featured in Ezra’s next post, The Final Sequence, as the 7th and final number in that sequence.]

    Now for the Sefardic custom combine all the individual threads, windings, and loops, 64 + 39 + 39 = 142. For the Arizal custom combine all the individual threads, windings and windings as subdivided by the loops, 64 + 39 + (13 x 3) = 142. Then add the number of individual knots, of which there are 10, to get 142 + 10 = 152. Then add 1 for the root section of the string where there are no windings, i.e., the section between the corner of the Talis and the first knot, to get 152 + 1 = 153. Then multiply by 4 because all of these elements are replicated on all 4 corners, to get 153 x 4 = 612. Then add 1 for the Talis garment itself, 612 + 1 = 613, and thus there is a direct one-to-one relationship between the elements of the Talis and Tzitzis to the 613 Mitzvos of the Torah.

    Of course there are other kosher methods that are also used for tying Tzitzis, especially when kosher blue dye is available for the Techeiles, and surely there are deep intentions and mystical secrets in all of them. The goal here however is just to give a taste of what wonders can be found if one only tries.

    (To be continued.)

  8. Correction:

    Previously I wrote above on June 22, 2018 at 5:41 pm:

    “It is noteworthy that the Divine Name Shadai occurs 9 times in the Torah, 4 times in Nevi’im, and 35 times in Kesuvim (2 times in Ruth, 2 times in Psalms and 31 times in Job), for a total of 9 + 4 + 35 = 48 times. These 48 Scriptural occurrences of the Name Shadai also correspond to the first paragraph of Shma with its 48 words.

    “In the Torah, in addition to the 9 times the Name Shadai is written, there is also another 5 times that the name of the leader of the tribe of Reuben, Elitzur son of Shda’or, is mentioned, and the Name Shadai may be part of his father’s name שדיאור,Shda’or, meaning “Shadai is Light.”

    “There is also 1 possibly related word שדין, Shadon (Job 19:29), with an additional final letter Nun, that is written with a letter Yud but read as with a letter Vov, that may also be related to the Name Shadai.
    “Counting those extra times the Name Shadai appears in these words, that would bring the total Scriptural occurrences of the Name Shadai to 48 + 5 + 1 = 54, which is the number of words in the first paragraph of Shma when counting the 6 words of the silent verse, Boruch Shem Kefod Malchuso L’olam Voed.”

    At the time I failed to notice that there are also two other leaders where again the Name Shadai is part of the person’s name, i.e., the leader of the tribe of Shimon, Shlumiel son of צורישדי, Tzuri-Shadai, with his father’s name meaning “My Rock is Shadai,” with 5 occurrence of this name in the Torah, and the leader of the tribe of Dan, Achiezer son עמישדי, Amishadai, with his father’s name meaning “My Kinsman is Shadai,” also with 5 occurrences in the Torah.

    This throws off the calculation that I made. My apologies for this oversight and for any other errors I may have made.

    At any rate perhaps instead a calculation of 48 + 15 + 1 = 64 occurrences of the Name Shadai in TaNaCh is significant, since as explained at length the Name Shadai is connected to the number 8, and 64 = 8 x 8.

  9. Incidentally, in the formula 48 + 15 + 1 = 64, the way this is divided into 48 occurrences of the Name Shadai in the Torah and 15 + 1 = 16 occurrences in Nevi’im and Kesuvim, also indicates a clear relationship to the number 8, since 48 = 6 x 8, and 16 = 2 x 8. This seems way beyond mere chance.

  10. Haste makes waste and also leads to mistakes. Sorry in my last comment I was rushing and so I made another mistake as should be plain for all to see. Here is the idea again, this time thought out a bit better, and hopefully now without a mistake:

    There are 9 times the Name Shadai appears in the Torah, and an additional 15 times that the Name appears as part of the names of the leaders of three of the tribes. That is a total of 9 + 15 = 24 = 3 x 8.

    There are 39 more times the Name appears in TaNaCh (possibly connected to the 39 windings of the Tzitzis, the 39 Melochos of Shabbos, and the 39 Makos that I recently discussed), and one possible extra time in Job 19:29 as I explained originally. That would be a total of 39 + 1 = 40 = 5 x 8. (It could also be that the 48 regular times the Name appears in TaNaCh are hinted by this verse Job 19:29 since 19 + 29 = 48).

    When the occurrences of the Name Shadai in Torah and in TaNaCh are joined together then there are 9 + 39 = 48 = 6 x 8 regular occurrences of the Name Shadai, and 15 + 1 = 16 = 2 x 8 irregular occurrences of the Name.

    These are perhaps even more amazing numbers than what I first wrote, well beyond the realm of chance.

    If anyone wants to double check (please do) there is an online search function available at http://www.snopi.com/xDic/Bible.aspx where you can generate results for complete Hebrew words or parts of words.

  11. Before straying to any more tangents, lets proceed to the previously mentioned hint to the third paragraph of Shma, the paragraph of Tzitzis, in the end of Parshas B’har-B’chukoshai, with just one more necessary introduction:

    Previously it was explained that the first paragraph of Shma has 205 letters, and the simplest possible word with this gematria is הר, Har, meaning mountain, is hinted in the name of Parshas B’Har, and the second paragraph of Shma has 508 letters, and one of the simplest words with this gematria is חקת, Chukas, meaning law or statute, as hinted in the name of Parshas B’Chukosai, and together the first two paragraphs of Shma therefore symbolize the great revelation of G-d on the mountain, Mount Sinai and the giving of the Torah its Laws.

    Continuing in this vein it is possible to say that the 287 letters in the third paragraph of Shma are reflected in the two smallest root words with the same gematria of 287, words that are related to one another, spelled with the same letters only in slightly different order, words with closely related meanings: פזר, Pozar, meaning disperse, scatter, or distribute freely and extravagantly, and פרז, Poraz, meaning spread out, open, and unbounded without walls.

    Some examples of the root פזר, Pozar, disperse, scatter, or dispense freely: “Israel is a dispersed (פזורה) lamb” (Yirmiya 50:17); “There is a people dispersed (מפזר) and divided among the peoples” (Esther 3:8); “He gives snow like fleece, He scatters (יפזר) frost like ashes” (Psalm 147:16), recited daily in our morning payers; “For G-d scatters (פזר) the bones of those who camp against you” (Psalm 53:6); “He has dispensed extravagantly (פזר), he has given to the poor, his righteousness endures forever” (Psalm 112:9); “There is one who disperses freely (מפזר) and yet increases” (Proverbs 11:24).

    Some examples of the root פרז, Poraz, spread out, without walls: “…aside from the cities without walls (הפרזי) very many” (Devorim 3:5); “You shall dwell without walls (פרוזות) in Jerusalem” (Zecharya 2:8); “Therefore the Yehudim who are spread out (הפרזים), who dwell in the unwalled (הפרזות) towns” (Esther 9:19); “There they will give praise of the righteousness of Hashem, His righteousness of settling Israel [without fear] in open villages (פרזונו)” (Judges 5:11). Similarly פרזי, Prizi (Breishis 13:7), was the name of a group of indigenous peoples living in the land of Canaan promised to Avrohom, and commentators explain they were given this name because they lived in cities without walls.

    The root פרז, Poraz, according to some commentators also has a connotation of meaning a leader or ruler who is not limited by normal boundaries, since the letter Zayin in the root פרז interchanges with a letter Tzadi to form the word פרץ, Poretz, which also has a meaning of spread out, increase, prosper and burst forth, as in: “And the man increased (ויפרץ) exceedingly greatly” (Breishis 30:43); “And you shall spread out (ופרצת) to the west and to the east and to the north and to the south” (Breishis 27:14.

    Poretz also has a connotation of a leader and ruler as in “You have burst open such a breach for yourself (פרצת עליך פרץ) and therefore his name was called Peretz (פרץ)” (Genesis 38:29), which is in reference to the birth of Peretz son of Yehudah, the progenitor of King Dovid and Moshiach, and as it says (Micha 2:13) “The one who breaks forth (פרץ) is come up before them, they have broken in (פרצו) and passed through the gate and are gone out by it, and their King passes on before them and Hashem at their head, and as in “A king bursts through (פורץ) boundaries” (Talmud as brought in Rambam).

    [These root words are also related to other root words such as פרך, Porach, פרס, Poras, פרע, Pora, פרק, Porak, and פרש, Poras, which all have very similar meanings, but it is not possible to elaborate now on all these.]

    As for how these terms relate to the Talis and Tzitzis, it is possible to say that this is because in simplicity the strings of the Tzitzis are designed to spread out from the Talis garment, because the strings are unbound at the bottom, allowing them to spread out apart from one another, especially as they are on all four corners, alluding to spreading out in all directions, “to the west and to the east and to the north and to the south.”

    In addition, while the number 7 symbolizes a completeness within the bounds nature, the number 8 as represented by the 8 strings of Tzitzis symbolizes what is even higher than nature, busting through and spreading out beyond the bounds of nature.

    Further, wearing the Talis and Tzitzis, immediately identifies one as a servant of the King, Hashem, paving the way, enlightening, and leading others, with the multitude of strings and the way they are tied indicating our being connected to and tied to Hashem through the keeping of all of His 613 commandments.

    These themes fit well with the themes described above, the mountain (הר) and laws (חקת), and the giving of the Torah on Mt. Sinai, for the hint to the words Pozar, Poraz, and Poretz indicate that Hashem did this for us in a most generous and extravagant manner (פזר), in a way that burst through the bounds that normally separate natural and supernatural, breaking through the decree that the upper realms do not descend to the lower realms and vice versa, and indicating that the valuable Laws of Hashem are spread out into all the affair of man and society, in order to permeate everything in the world with His holiness.

    (To be continued.)

  12. It was explained above that the 287 letters of the third paragraph of Shma are hinted in the word פזר, Pozar, meaning spread out and disperse, gematria 287. This includes a connection to a relatively rare Torah reading cantillation sign, the פזר, Pozair, which instructs the reader spread out and scatter his voice through a pattern of notes while chanting the word of Scripture, which prolongs and emphasizes the word and indicates heightened significance. There are various traditions for how to sing the Pozair, and in the Ashkenazi cantillation tradition that I am familiar with it consists of 8 notes, corresponding to the number 8 that is symbolic of Tzitzis.

    Based on understanding this relationship to the Pozair cantillation a special hint to the third paragraph of Shma can be identified in the closing verses of B’Har-B’Chukosai:

    In all of B’har and B’Chukosai the Pozair cantillation only occurs once, near the end of B’Chukosai, at the beginning of verse VaYikra 27:28, “But any devoted thing that is devoted by a man unto Hashem of all that he has, whether of man or beast or of the field of his possession, shall not be sold nor redeemed; every devoted thing is holy of holies unto Hashem.” The Pozair cantillation sign is on the initial letter Ches of the word ח’רם, Cheirem, “devoted thing,” in the first of the three times that word appears in the verse.

    It is notable that the cantillation sign Pozair associated with this word is on the letter Ches, gematria 8, corresponding to the 8 strings of Tzitzis. Additionally the word Cheirem, “devoted thing,” may also be understood as a composite of ח’ רם, Ches Rom, i.e., indicating that the letter Ches, 8, is a sign of uplifting and elevation (Rom), symbolic of the covenant with G-d on a level higher than nature.

    In addition, the word חרם, Cheirem, “devoted thing,” is gematrai 248, and thus it corresponds to the 248 positive Mitzvos that we are reminded of by the Tzitzis, and with chanting the paragraph of Tzitzis we complete the 248 words associated with the recital of the three paragraphs of the Shma as per the instructions of our sages o.b.m.

    Further, the three word expression חרם אשר יחרם, Cheirem Asher Yacharim, “devoted thing that is devoted,” has a gematria of 248 + 501 + 258 = 1007. If 8 for the first letter Ches is not counted, because it already has associated with it the hint of the cantillation sign Pozair, then the remainder is 1007 – 8 = 999, and then adding a Kolel of 1 for the letter Ches, or for the adjacent letter Alef in the next word in the verse א’יש, Ish, man, or for the general Kolel, then 999 + 1 = 1000, corresponding to the 1000 total letters in the three paragraphs of Shma. Alternatively, the number 1007 itself is representative of the Shma, 1000 for the number of letters, plus 1 for each of the 6 words of the silent verse Boruch Shem Kevod Malchuso L’olam Voed, and 1 for the word Emes added at the end, which together sums to 1000 + 6 + 1 = 1007. Also the small gematria of 1007 is 1 + 0 + 0 + 7 = 8, a reflection of the connection to the 8 strings of Tzitzis and devotion to Hashem in a manner higher than nature.

    The phrase חרם אשר יחרם, Cheirem Asher Yacharim, “devoted thing that is devoted,” is also repeated at the beginning of the very next verse VaYikra 27:29, this time with a different, more frequent cantillation sign, a רביעי, Revi’i, on the initial letter Ches. This cantillation sign also may hint to the third paragraph of Shma since the word Revi’i means four, and in the Ashkenazi tradition the chanting of a word with this sign is sung with four distinct descending notes at the end, and the sign itself is a four cornered diamond shaped mark, corresponding to Tzitzis that hang down from the four corners of the Talis. Also the word Revi’i is gematria 292, the same as the sum of the 287 letters of the third paragraph of Shma, plus 5 for the 5 verses of the paragraph, 287 + 5 = 292.

    It is possible that the repetition of this unusual phrase in these two successive verses alludes to the two times per day we that we are obligated to recite the Shma, once in the morning and once at night.
    Interestingly too, the word Cheirem appears a total of 5 times in this section at the end of B’Chukosai, 3 times in verse 27:28 and 2 times in verse 27:29, and these 3 + 2 = 5 words may allude to the 5 verses of the paragraph of Tzitzis or to the 5 knots of the Tzitzis.

    There is also a relationship between the numbers 287 and 248, in that the difference between them is 287 – 248 = 39, and as we have explained, the number 39, and likewise sum of 3 x 13 = 39, plays a key role with regard to the Tzitzis as reflected in the 39 wrappings at the top of the Tzitzis strings.
    Further, the number 287 in small gematria reduces to 2 + 8 + 7 = 17, and 17 reduces to 1 + 7 = 8, thus in this manner too the number 287 alludes to the 8 strings of Tzitzis.

    In the same way the number 248 in small gematria reduces to 2 + 4 + 8 = 14, and 14 reduces to 1 + 4 = 5, which alludes to the 5 knots of Tzitzis.

    In general, too, the idea of a “devotion to Hashem,” is what wearing Tzitzis is all about, to be completely devoted to Hashem.

    It is significant that the theme of Tzeduka, in the form of pledges, devotions, and tithing one’s income for the Divine service in the Sanctuary, is discussed in this section of the Torah at the end of B’har-B’chukosai, which concludes the whole Sefer Vayikra.

    It is also significant that correspondingly that the theme of Tzeduka and charity is hinted in the word Pozair (with a gematria of 287 corresponding to the 287 letters of the paragraph of Tzitzis), as evident from some of the verses brought above in the previous comment, such as (Psalm 112:9) “He has dispensed extravagantly (פזר), he has given to the poor, his righteousness (צדקתו, Tzidkoso, with the same root as the word צדקה, Tzeduka) endures forever,” and (Judges 5:11) “There they will give praise of the righteousness (again with the same root as צדקה, Tzeduka) of Hashem, His righteousness (yet again the same root as צדקה, Tzeduka) of settling Israel [without fear] in open villages (פרזונו).”

    It is understandable that there is a special connection between Tzitzis and Tzeduka, because like Tzitzis, giving Tzeduka is also considered to be inclusive of all the 613 Mitzvos. As our sages o.b.m. emphasized (Baba Basra 9a), “Tzeduka is equivalent to all other commandments,” and throughout the Jerusalem Talmud the Mitzvah of giving Tzeduka is simply called “The Commandment,” because it is the essence of all the commandments and in some ways exceeds them all, and specifically Tzeduka is called “Hashem’s Commandment,” since G-d Himself constantly performs charity at all times by sustaining and vitalizing all of creation.

    Certainly if Tzitzis is a reminder of all the Mitzvos, then how much more so is it a reminder of all the essential Mitzvos, such as Bris Milah, circumcision, the a sign on our body, Shabbos the sign on our days, Tefillin the sign on our head and on our hand, Mezuzah the sign on our houses, since similarly Tzitzis itself the sign on our clothes, reminding us to keep all the Mitzvos, and especially as explained here since this includes being a reminder to be careful to keep the essential Mitzvah of Tzeduka, giving charity, which is inclusive of all the other Mitzvos, including the Mitzvah to follow in the ways of Hashem.

    The Torah testifies about our trailblazing patriarch אברהם, Avrohom, whose name is also gematria 248 like the word חרם, Cheirem, devotion, and who himself was totally devoted to Hashem, that “For I know him, that he shall command his children and his household after him that they shall keep the way of Hashem to do righteousness (Tzeduka) and justice (Mishpot)” (Breishis 18:19). Therefore we are charged to do as much Tzeduka and kindness as we can, and to do so freely and in an extravagant and kingly manner, in the manner of Pozar, Poraz and Poretz.

    Most significantly our giving Tzeduka in this way is guaranteed to lead to the promised redemption very soon, since (as stated in Bava Basra 10a) Gedolah Tzeduka She’Mekareves Es Ha’geulah, “Great is charity for it brings the redemption closer,” and (Yeshaya 1:27) Tziyon B’Mishpot Tipododeh V’Shoveho B’Tzeduka, “Zion shall be redeemed with justice, and they that return of her with Tzeduka”!

    (To be continued.)

    This series will conclude IY”H with explanation of what was mentioned before, that in continuance to the previous Sedros the third paragraph of Shma is also hinted in Sedrah Bamidbar. It also will be explained how Talis and Tzitzis correspond to the Mishkon-Tabernacle and the Divine service in the Sanctuary, and how by wearing Talis and Tzitzis one is transformed into a Mikdosh Me’at, a miniature sanctuary, and thereby may experience a profound personal one-on-one relationship with Hashem.

    Questions, comments or support may be addressed to moshe@chassidusunlimited.com or to Moshe Friedman, c/o Chassidus Unlimited Inc., P.O.B. 302, South Fallsburg, NY 12779, for many years involved in teaching and spreading the inner teachings of Torah. My present website http://chassidusunlimited.com is basically unchanged since 1996, with only a few articles explaining why the late Lubavitcher Rebbe זצ”ל, or any deceased person for that matter, cannot possibly be Moshiach. Unfortunately the situation with regard to that matter also remains basically unchanged since then. However expansion of the Chassidus Unlimited website is planned, including the thoughts presented here with some enhancements and much more, and kind donations will be appreciated and received gratefully with blessings.

    Thank you Ezra for your important blog revealing Kabbalah Secrets, and especially for the inspiring and electrifying news about the great opportunity and promise of this unique year 5778 HC / 2018 CE. I’m optimistic about further imminent developments and it would be nice if we could collaborate on projects together.

    Chazak Chazak V’nisChazeik

  1. As stated previously there are hints to the Shma in general, and to the third paragraph of Shma in particular, in Sedra Bamidbar, starting from the very first verse.

    First of all the name of the Sedra, במדבר, Bamidbar, “In the Desert,” so named after the 5th word in the first verse, and after the story of the wandering in the desert that it describes, is gematria 248, corresponding to the 248 positive commandments and to the 248 words in the recital of Shma, which are completed with the third paragraph of Shma and repetition of the last words of the paragraph and the word Emes.

    Bamidbar is also the name of the entire 4th Book of the Torah, which also is know by another name, the “Book of Numbers,” due to the two censuses of the Children of Israel it relates, and this is a translation of the Hebrew words ספר הפקודים, Sefer HaPekudim. It is interesting that the word HaPekudim in gematria is 245, and with 3 more for the 3 letters of the word Sefer, or with 2 more for the 2 censuses it relates and 1 for the Kolel, sums to 245 + 3 = 248. Alternatively HaPekudim, 245, plus 4 since it is the 4th Book of the Torah, sum to 245 + 4 = 249, which is the same as 248 plus 1 for the Kolel. Either way this also conveys the same idea that it alludes to the 248 positive commandments and to the 248 words in the recital of Shma.

    In the first verse of Bamidbar the cantillation sign on the word Bamidbar is a common one, a מרכה, Mercho, however it is interesting that the word Bamidbar also occurs in the first verse of the Book of Devorim, the next Sefer [which by Hashgacha Protis we read the first Sedra this week], and there the cantillation sign on the word Bamidbar is a פזר, Pozair, and as discussed in previous comments, Pozair is gematria 287, corresponding to the 287 letters of the third paragraph of Shma. That is the only time that the cantillation sign Pozair occurs in an opening verse of any Parsha of the Torah, and in connection with what was explained above this seems to be significant.

    There are 17 words in the first verse of Bamidbar, and all of them may be explained as hinting to the themes in this discussion:

    The 1st and 2nd words of the verse, וידבר י-ה-ו-ה, Vayedaber Hashem, “And Hashem spoke,” are gematria 222 + 26 = 248, the same important number. As explained a number of times, 248 is also the gematria of Avrohom, and the number 248 ends with digit 8, and it is also 8 times the gematria of a Divine Name, since it 8 times א-ל, E-l, gematria 31, i.e., 8 x 31 = 248, the Name with which Hashem called to Avrohom when commanding him with the covenant of circumcision on him and on his household and on his future offspring, starting from Yitzchok, on their 8th day of life.

    The 3rd and 4th words of the verse, אל משה, el Moshe, “to Moshe” [the word “to” and not the Name “E-l” that is spelled the same], are gematria 31 + 345 = 376, the same as the word שלום, Sholom, Peace [also hinting to the pivotal number 3760 that is key to the Divine Calendar as Ezra explains]. The theme of Peace, in addition to being considered in and of itself a Divine Name, is very relevant to the Shma since the purpose of the Torah and reciting the Shma is to bring peace and completeness (Shleimus) to the world and to the relationship between man and G-d. It is possible to say that the number 376 = 300 + 70 + 6, corresponding to the first letter Shin of Shma, gematria 300, the large letter Ayin of the first word of Shma, gematria 70, and 6 for the 6 words of the first verse of Shma or of the adjoined silent verse Boruch Shem Kevod Malchuso L’Olom Voed.

    These first 4 words of the first verse of Bamidbar, “And Hashem spoke (Vayedaber) to Moshe” correspond to the first 4words “And Hashem spoke (Vayomer) to Moshe” that begin the third paragraph of Shma. Below it will be discussed how also the last word of both this first verse of Bamidbar and of the first verse of the third paragraph of Shma are identical.

    As noted before, משה, Moshe, in gematria is the same as the Divine Names א-ל ש-ד-י, E-l Shadai, 31 + 314 = 345. Incidentally it says in Seforim that when E-l Shadai is spelled out fully אלף למד שין דלת יוד it sums to 111 + 74 + 360 + 434 + 20 = 999, and with 1 for the Kolel equals 1000, which corresponds to the 1000 letters of Shma.

    The 5th word of the verse is Bamidbar, gematria 248, with significance as mentioned above, and the 6th word סיני, Sinai, is gematria 130, corresponding to the gematria of Echod, 13 times 10. Together the 5th and 6th words of the verse, במדבר סיני, Bamidbar Sinai, “in the Sinai desert,” add up to 248 + 130 = 378, which is the same as 376 + 2, like the word בשלום, BaSholom, “with peace,” very similar to the gematria of the immediately previous 3rd and 4th words. The number 378 = 300 + 70 + 8 and it may be that the 300 corresponds to the 287 letters of the third paragraph of Shma plus the 5 knots and 8 strings of Tzitzis, 287 + 5 + 8 = 300, the 70 corresponds to the 69 words of the third paragraph of Shma plus the 1 word Emes, and the 8 corresponds to the 3 paragraphs of Shma plus the 5 verses of the third paragraph of Shma, 3 + 5 = 8. Incidentally it is impossible to see the formula 3 + 5 = 8 and not see the hint to the number 358, the gematria of משיח, Moshiach.

    Together these first 6 words of the verse sum to 222 + 26 + 31 + 345 + 248 + 130 = 1002, and with 1 for the Kolel sum to 1003, which corresponds to the 1000 letters of Shma plus the 3 letters of the word אמת, Emes, True, that are joined to the Shma. Adding a Kolel of 1 for each of these 6 words brings the sum to 1002 + 6 = 1008, which corresponds to the 1000 letters of Shma together with 8 strings of Tzitzis.

    The 7th and 8th words of the verse, באהל מועד, B’Ohel Moed, “in the Tent of Meeting,” correspond to the Talis which covers the person like a tent when one communes with Hashem, as shall be explained at length in a coming comment, and the gematria of these words, B’Ohel Moed, 38 + 120 = 158, can be interpreted as 1-5-8, i.e., 1 Talis plus the 5 knots and the 8 strings of Tzitzis. Without the prefix of the letter Beis, אהל מועד, Ohel Moed, Tent of Meeting, is gematria 36 + 120 = 156, which 6 x 26 = 156, i.e., since in the Tent of Meeting one is encompassed by Hashem in 6 directions, front, back, right, left, up and down. When spelled אהל מעד, without the letter Vov, it is gematria 150, corresponding to the Name Yud Heh, gematria 15 times 10, and the same as the word כנף, Konof, corner, as in the corners of the Talis, as explained above.

    The 9th word of the verse, באחד, B’Echod, “on the first [day],” hints to the word Echod, One, in the first verse of Shma, and with the prefix letter Beis makes the gematria of the word 2 + 13 = 15, the same as the Divine Name Yud Heh, with parallels in the way the Tzitzis are tied, as explained above.

    The 10th word of the verse, לחדש, LaChodesh, “of the month,” is related to the word חדש, Chodosh, “new,” and hints that the recital of the Shma should always appear as something novel and new for us to experience, and finding new meanings in it all the time, since it is infinite, like the giving of the Torah about which Chazal say it should always us as something new, and the “echo” of Matan Torah reverberates throughout all time.

    In gematria the word לחדש, LaChodesh, is 342 which equals 300 + 42, and since 42 = 6 x 7, and if the multiplication is changed to addition, instead of 6 x 7 = 42 substituting + for x yields 6 + 7 = 13, then the resulting sum is 300 + 6 + 7 = 313, and with 1 for the Kolel equals 314, the gematria of the Name ש-ד-י, Shadai. Without the prefix letter Lamed, חדש, Chodesh, “month,” .e. “new [moon],” is gematria 312 [a number connected to the Mishkan Ohel Moed as was explained], and adding 1 for the Kolel gives 313, which is the same as the Name Shadai minus 1 for the Kolel. [There is also another hint to the Name Shadai in this verse as will be explained in the next comment.]

    The number 248 corresponds to the number of limbs in the body and to the number of positive commandments, things we are commanded to do for all generations, while 365 corresponds to the number of days in the solar year and to the number of negative commandments, things we are commanded to not do for all generations. Just as there are hints to the number 248 in the first verse of Bamidbar, so too there are hints to the number 365 in this verse.

    The 11th word of the verse, השני, HaSheini, “the second [month],” is gematria 365, corresponding to the number of days in a year and to the number of negative commandments.

    The 12th word of the verse בשנה, BaShonoh, “in the year,” shares the same root as the word שני, Sheini, “second,” because a year marks the repetition of the seasonal cycle. In gematria בשנה, BaShonoh, is 357, which corresponds to the 287 letters of the third paragraph of Shma plus its 69 words plus the 1 word Emes, 287 + 69 + 1 = 357.

    The 13th word, השנית, HaSheinis, “the second,” begins with 4 letters identical to the 11th word, HaSheini, with a gematria of 365, as just said, and its last letter Tuv is gematria 400, and in the context of years symbolizes the 400 years that Hashem foretold to Avrohom in the Covenant between the Pieces that his offspring would be in exile for 400 years before they would be redemption, which this is related in the next words of this verse.

    It is possible that the repetition of hints to the numbers 248 and 365 in this verse allude to the repetition of the Shma two times, as stated in the words of the Shma iteself, “when you arise and when you lie down,” in the morning and in the evening.

    The 14th, 15th, and 16th words of the verse, לצאתם מארץ מצרים, L’tzasom MaEretz Mitzrayim, “since their exodus from the land of Egypt,” clearly corresponds to the theme of the last verse of the third paragraph of Shma, “I am Hashem your G-d who took you out of the land of Egypt…”

    Together these three words have a gematria of 561 + 331 + 380 = 1272, with the average for the 3 words being exactly 1272 / 3 = 424, the same gematria as משיח בן דוד, Moshiach Ben Dovid, 358 + 52 + 14 = 424, the redeemer from this the last exile, the precedent for which was the Exodus from Egypt, “like the days of your going out of Egypt I will show you wonders.”

    Incidentally 1272 is evenly divisible by 8, 1272 / 8 = 159, and 159 = 3 x 53, and similarly 424 is evenly divisible by 8 and by 53, since 8 x 53 = 424. The number 53 is the 16th prime number and the number 16 is significant since when multiplied by 2, the 1st prime number, 8 x 2 = 16, and since in this context the word Mitzrayim is the 16th word in this verse.

    The 17th and last word of the verse, לאמר, Lamor, “saying,” is the same as the last word of the first verse of the third paragraph of Shma. The word Lamor is gematria 271, and with 1 for each of the previous 16 words in the verse, sums to 271 + 16 = 287, which is the number of letters in the third paragraph of Shma.

    The number 16 in this equation also corresponds to the original 16 strings to make the Tzitzis that are inserted into the 4 corners of the Talis, 4 strings per corner (which when doubled over make 8 strings per corner for a total of 32 strings). The number 16 also corresponds to the 16 terms of praise that are recited after Shma in the morning prayer service, the first of which is Emes, True, i.e., “True and certain and established and enduring and right and faithful and beloved and cherished and delightful and sweet and awesome and mighty and correct and acceptable and good and beautiful.”

    All together the 17 words of the first verse of Bamidbar sum to 222 + 26 + 31 + 345 + 248 + 130 + 38 + 120 + 15 + 342 + 365 + 357 + 765 + 561 + 331 + 380 + 271 = 4547, which 4547 is the 616th prime number. The number 616 is also evenly divisible by 8, for 616 / 8 = 77, i.e., 8 times the gematria of the word מזל, Mazal, fortune, 8 x 77 = 616, and indeed it is quite a Mazal to uncover all of these secrets that enhance our understanding and our connection to Hashem.

    The number 616 is also 600 + 16, and the word Tzitzis in gematria is 600, and with 8 for the strings and 5 for the knots sums to 613, corresponding to the number of commandments 248 + 365 = 613, and together with 1 for the windings and 1 for the loops (as explained above) and with 1 for the Talis garment itself the sum is 613 + 3 = 616. In addition, the 613 positive and negative commandments, plus 1 for Yisroel who performs the Mitzvos, and 1 for the Torah which teaches the commandments, plus 1 for Hashem who commands the Mitzvos, also sums to 13 + 3 = 616.

    Also significant is that in this first verse of Bamidbar there are 70 letters, corresponding to the gematria of the large letter Ayin in the first word of Shma, and to the 70 words in the third paragraph of Shma with the word Emes, and to the 70 years since the reestablishment of the state of Israel until now – as predicted in the Zohar in connection to the 70 words of Psalm 20, as explained in my comments on the previous post “The Fingerprints of G-d.”

    (To be continued.)

  2. Some minor amendments to the previous comment:

    In the second to the last paragraph above I wrote:

    The number 616 is also 600 + 16, and the word Tzitzis in gematria is 600, and with 8 for the strings and 5 for the knots sums to 613, corresponding to the number of commandments 248 + 365 = 613, and together with 1 for the windings and 1 for the loops (as explained above) and with 1 for the Talis garment itself the sum is 613 + 3 = 616.

    —- Probably for the final triplet in this calculation it would have been better to have said “1 for the spaces between the knots, 1 for the windings around these spaces, and 1 for the loops around these windings,” since these form a triplet of extra aspects of the Tzitzis that fit well with one another, as was explained above at length.

    Then I wrote:

    In addition, the 613 positive and negative commandments, plus 1 for Yisroel who performs the Mitzvos, and 1 for the Torah which teaches the commandments, plus 1 for Hashem who commands the Mitzvos, also sums to 13 + 3 = 616.

    —- The equation at the end obviously should be corrected to 613 + 3 = 616 since I accidentally left out the 6 from 613. As for the triplet at the end of this equation, “1 for Yisroel…, 1 for the Torah…, 1 for Hashem…,” it is basically the same as what was suggested in a comment by G. on the latest post The Prime Directive, where he wrote that “G-d, the Torah, and the children of Israel are One.” He said it in the name of Rabbi Ashlag, however it is based on the Zohar III 73a: תלת קשרין מתקשרין דא בדא ישראל אורייתא וקוב”ה, ישראל מתקשרין באורייתא ואורייתא בקוב”ה.

    In conclusion of the previous comment I wrote:

    Also significant is that in this first verse of Bamidbar there are 70 letters, corresponding to… the 70 years since the reestablishment of the state of Israel until now – as predicted in the Zohar in connection to the 70 words of Psalm 20….

    —- With regard to this 70th year there was more movement this week in a positive direction since at the Trump-Putin summit both world leaders agreed on protecting Israel’s security from the threats it currently faces, and also the Israeli Knesset passed a new basic law that declares Israel to be a Jewish state with Jerusalem as its capitol, with Hebrew is the official language, and with the Hebrew calendar as the official calendar. Ongoing right now is new fighting against Hamas, with the IDF striking deep inside Gaza and making preparations for another war there. Let us hope that our prayers will be answered immediately, and that this Shabbos, the 9th of Av, when the fasting of is pushed off, things will change forever for the best…

    Shabbat Sholom!

  3. In addition to what was stated above there are also other numbers that are hinted in the first verse of Bamidbar, since it mentions that “Hashem spoke to Moshe,” at the end of a specific time period, “on the first day of the second month in the second year following the exodus from the land of Egypt,” i.e., the time from the Exodus, on the 15th day of Nisan 2448, until 1st day of Iyar 2449. How many days were in this period?

    The Exodus took place on the 15th of Nisan, the first month, and there are 30 days in the month, so there are 30 – 15 = 15 more days in Nisan. Counting the day of the Exodus itself makes 16 days of redemption in the month of Nisan. The next day, the 17th day, is the 1st day of the month of Iyar. A standard lunar year has 354 days, and seemingly the first year would not have been a leap year.

    Therefore in between the two dates, 15 Nisan 2448 and 1 Iyar 2449, not including these two days themselves, there are 354 + 15 = 369 days. Counting the day of the Exodus, the 15th of Nisan 2448, there are 354 + 16 = 370 days. Counting the 1st of Iyar, “the first day of the second month in the second year,” there are 354 + 17 = 371 days. These numbers have significance that was mostly discussed already.

    The number 369 may allude to the third paragraph of Shma, since it equals the sum of the 287 letters, plus the 69 words, plus the 5 verses, or plus the 5 knots of Tzitzis, plus the 8 strings of Tzitzis, 287 + 69 + 5 + 8 = 369. The number 369 is also equal to 123 x 3 and to 41 x 9, as previously discussed.

    The number 370 is the gematria of שלם, Sholeim, “complete,” similar to שלום, Sholom, Peace, when written without the letter Vov, as explained above. In addition, 370 = 37 x 10, and 37 is the 12th prime number, and as such it may represent the completeness of the 12 Tribes. Also 37 represents the completeness of the 10 Sephiros, since 3 + 7 = 10, with 3 x 10 = 30 corresponding to the 3 higher Sefiros and with 7 corresponding to the 7 lower Sefiros.

    The number 371 = 7 x 53, and as mentioned above 53 is the 16th prime number. Since there are 7 days in a week the opening passage of Bamidbar was 53 weeks after the Exodus. The number 53 is also significant since the Torah is divided into 53 Sedros, and 53 is also the gematria of גן, Gan, garden, as in the Garden of Eden.

    The name עדן, Eden, meaning “Pleasure” or “Delight,” is composed of the first two letters עד, Ayin Dalet, which are the significant two large letters in the first verse of Shma, and the final letter ן, Nun, is gematria 50 or gematria 700, which these numbers are also connected to Shma, as explained above. The hint from this is that one’s entering into the recitation of the Shma is similar to one’s entering into the Garden of Eden.

    ———-

    As mentioned above, in the first verse of Bamidbar there is also a hint to the Name Shadai. Start from the first letter Shin in the verse, which is the 13th letter, the middle letter in the word מש’ה, which Moshe is connected to the Name Shadai since as said above the gematria of Moshe is the same as the gematria of the Divine Names E-l Shadai. Then there is an equal letter skip that spells out the Name Shadai, by skipping 3 letters, and then the 4th letter is the letter Dalet in the next word במד’בר, Bamidbar, and then skipping another 3 letters, and then the 4th letter is the first letter Yud in the next word Sinai, מש’ה במד’בר סי’ני, spelling Shin-Dalet-Yud, the Divine Name Shadai.

    Interestingly the 6 letters that are skipped, ה ב מ ב ר ס, Heh, Beis, Mem, Beis, Reish, Samech, in gematria are 5 + 2 + 40 + 2 + 200 + 60 = 309, and with 1 for each of these 6 letters, sums to 309 + 6 = 315 which is also the same as the Name Shadai with 1 for the Kolel, 314 + 1 = 315. This then is actually a double hint to the Name Shadai (like the double hints to the 248 positive commandments and to the 365 negative commandments in this verse as explained above).

    As previously explained the Name Shadai is intimately connected with the Shma. So strong is this connection that there is a custom to cover one’s eyes with one’s hand while reciting the first verse of Shma in order to increase concentration, to shut out all distractions and concentrate on Hashem, and this too is hinted in the Name Shadai.

    The covering of one’s eyes with one’s hand is hinted in the first verse of Shma itself, in the two large letters, the Ayin of the word Shma and the Dalet of the word Echod. The large Ayin may be understood as having a meaning of עין, Ayin, “eye(s),” and the large Dalet represents a significant part of the word יד, Yad, spelled Yud Dalet, meaning “hand.”

    Further, when covering our eyes while reciting this verse of Shma, the common custom is for one’s hand to be held with 4 fingers of the hand, Dalet being gematria 4, stretched out over the eyes, and with the thumb stretched upward, and when held like this one’s hand forms a shape similar to an upside-down letter Dalet. Together then these two large letters of the Shma symbolize covering one’s eyes with one’s hand when one says the first verse of Shma.

    The Name Shadai may be understood to hint to this custom since as explained above the letter Shin of Sh’adai hints to ש’מש, Sh’emesh, sun, and ש’מים, Sh’omayim, heaven or sky, and as Rashi explains on the first time the word Shomayim appears, in the first verse of the Torah, it is a combination of the two words אש, AiSh, fire, and מים, Mayim, water, and thus the first letter Shin of Sh’omayim also stands for א’ש, Ai-Sh, fire, which the sun in the sky and fire are the sources of light by which our eyes are able to see. The remaining letters of Shadai, the letters Dalet and Yud, in reverse order spell the word יד, YaD, meaning “hand.” It comes out that together the letters of the Name Shadai hint to vision and to hand, and thus hint to the custom to cover our eyes with our hand when reciting Shma.

    In addition, according to a Kabbalistic teaching, when covering one’s eyes with one’s hand when saying the first verse of Shma, one should arrange his fingers so that the three middle fingers of one’s hand are stretched upward in the shape of the letter Shin, and held opposite the middle of one’s forehead above the eyes. One’s thumb should be bent to resemble the shape of a letter Dalet and placed over one’s right eye. One’s pinky should be curled up to resemble the shape of a letter Yud and placed over one’s left eye. Thus the shape of one’s fingers when held in this way spells out the letters Shin-Dalet-Yud, spelling the Name Shadai, and try it and see this is a very effective device for increasing one’s concentration and meditation on the Name and focusing one’s attention completely on Hashem.

    The two customs are not mutually exclusive, for one may follow both customs when one recites the Shma, by starting first with the more common method of holding one’s hand and fingers, and then afterwards switching and adjusting one’s hand and fingers to the Kabbalistic method.

    [In a future comment it will be explained how holding one’s hand to spell out the Name Shadai on one’s forehead when reciting Shma is comparable to the way the words קודש ל י-ה-ו-ה, Kodesh L’Hashem, “Holy to G-d,” were embossed on Tzitz, the golden headband, the special ornament worn on the head of the Kohan Godal. It will also be explained how the word ציץ, Tzitz, is related to the word Tzitzis, and that including the Tzitz, the golden headband, there are a total of 8 priestly garments, corresponding to the 8 strings of Tzitzis.]

    Understanding these hints and meditating on them when reciting the Shma will surely enhance one’s connection to Hashem, and thereby help ensure the fulfillment of all our prayers, starting from one of the prayers said upon arising in the morning,תּורָה תְּהֵא אֱמוּנָתִי. וְאֵל שַׁדַּי בְּעֶזְרָתִי, “May the Torah be my faith, and E-l Shadai, the Almighty, be my help…,” and finishing with the ending of the prayer Oleinu, עַל כֵּן נְקַוֶּה לְּךָ ה’ אֱלהֵינוּ לִרְאות מְהֵרָה בְּתִפְאֶרֶת עֻזֶּךָ. לְהַעֲבִיר גִּלּוּלִים מִן הָאָרֶץ. וְהָאֱלִילִים כָּרות יִכָּרֵתוּן. לְתַקֵּן עולָם בְּמַלְכוּת שַׁדַּי, “Therefore we put our hope in You, Hashem Elokeinu, Hashem our G-d, that we may soon see Your mighty splendor, to remove detestable idolatry from the earth, and false gods will be utterly cut off, to perfect the universe through Shadai’s, the Almighty’s, sovereignty… Hashem will be King over all the world – on that day Hashem will be One and His Name will be One.”

    — Note that in the last lines quoted from the end of the Oleinu prayer there are three different Divine Names, Hashem, Elokeinu, and Shadai that are mentioned. What should be obvious to all is that there is only One G-d, however different Names are used depending on the context and the attribute of G-d that is being stressed. G-d in His Essence is Way, Way, Way beyond being limited to any Divine Name, and the different Divine Names are merely analogous to different colored Vessels by which man is able to relate to G-d, however the Divine Light that shines through these Vessels is ultimately the same, from the One and Only Divine Source of All.

    The Jewish perspective is that certainly there is no such thing as a Duality, two gods, one good and one evil, as in the Zoastrianism belief, and that certainly there is no such thing as a Trinity, three gods, as in Christian belief. There can be no quibbling about it. Hashem Echod, G-d is One and Only One. —

    Hopefully everyone had a meaningful Tisha B’Av, and hopefully by next year we will already be able to celebrate that day as a holiday. Incidentally, the words תשעה אב, Thisa Av, “9 Av,” the 9th day in the month of Av, in gematria are 775 + 3 = 778, as in this year 5778, and very quickly now the status of this day and the status of the whole world will forever be changed to Peace and Perfection.

    (To be continued.) 

  1. As noted above, the words תשעה אב, Tisha Av, “9 Av,” the 9th day in the month of Av, in gematria are 775 + 3 = 778, as in this year (5)778, and to this it could be added that since Av is the 5th month, therefore the more complete hint is 5-778. This hint corresponds specifically to this year [and likewise 2 years from now when the hint will also include the gematria of the prefix letter Beis, ב’אב, B’Av].

    A few days following Tisha B’Av every year comes the quasi holiday of Tu B’Av, the 15th of Av, connected with the appearance of a full moon, that represents renewal of Israel after the destruction associated with Tisha B’Av, about which the Mishna states that Yisroel never had such holidays like Yom Kippur and Tu B’Av, indicating the great elevation of this day. This year Tu B’Av starts tonight, Thursday night, and continues on Friday, and it is obviously another auspicious date with great potential for the redemption. At the end of the day, going into Friday night, Shabbos, there will be a special unusual complete lunar eclipse that may be a sign in the sky of interesting things that are developing, especially when the light of the moon is renewed after the eclipse.

    This coming Shabbos has a special name, Shabbos Nachamu, a Shabbos of Consolation and Comfort after the destruction, based on the Haftora reading (Isaiah 40:1-26), Nachamu Nachamu Ami, “Comfort, comfort My people, says your G-d,” when we look forward to renewal of our connection with Hashem. The Torah portion read on this Shabbos after Tisha B’Av is VoEschanan, which is a very significant reading since it contains within it the first paragraph of Shma and the repetition of the Ten Commandments. The gematria of the word ואתחמן, VoEschanan, is 515, and it is possible to say that this number hints to Tu B’Av, the 15th of Av, since it is a combination of the 5th month and the 15th day, 5-15, and this is a strong hint that comes every year.

    ———-

    There are a number of Biblical readings on Tisha B’Av, starting with the reading of the Scroll of Eichah, Lamentations, which begins איכה ישבה, Eicha Yoshvo, “How is it [Alas] she sits in solitude. The city that was great with people has become like a widow…”

    Since we have discussed the Divine Name E-l Sha-dai and its association with the number 8, it is significant to point out that the first 3 letters of Eicha are gematria 31, the same as the Name E-l, and the next 3 letters are gematria 315, the same as the Name Sha-dai plus 1 for the Kolel. Alternatively the first word is gematria 36, like HoE-l, The G-d, and the second word is gematria 317, the same as Sha-dai with 3 more for its 3 letters, 314 + 3 = 317. Alternatively the total gematria of the two words is 36 + 317 = 353, which is the same as E-l Sha-dai plus 8 symbolizing the 8 strings of Tzitzis and 8 days for circumcision, 31 + 314 + 8 = 353.

    In the morning of Tisha B’Av the congregation reads from VoEschanan the Parsha of כי תוליד, Ki Sohlid, “When you beget children and grandchildren and will have been long in the Land, you will grow corrupt…”

    It is interesting that this reading starts with the word Ki, in gematria 30, which with 1 for the Kolel is 31, the same as the gematria of the Name E-l. The second word Sohlid is gematria 450, which as explained above is 10 times the Divine Name of 45 letters, and equal to the gematria of the word טלית, Talis, 449 with 1 for the Kolel. Together the two words sum to 30 + 450 = 480, which is the same as 10 times the 48 words of the first paragraph of Shma that are written in the Torah in this same Sedra VoEschana.

    In the afternoon of Tisha B’Av (and on other fast days) the congregation reads the part of the Torah telling of Moshe Rabbeinu seeking forgiveness from Hashem for the people sinning with the Golden Calf, and this includes Hashem teaching Moshe the 13 Attributes of Mercy (Exodus 26:6-7), “Hashem passed before him and He called out: Hashem, Hashem, G-d, Compassionate and Gracious…” It is worth while presenting here a quote from the Artscroll Chumash commenting on this since it is relevant to our discussion about Talis and Tzitzis:

    “…Hashem Himself passed before Moses, implying that G-d appeared to Moses and showed him how Jewish supplicants should conduct themselves when they pray. This is the basis of the following homiletic teaching (Maharal, Be’er HaGolah): R’ Yochanan said, Were it not written in Scripture, it would be impossible [for us] to say it. This [verse] teaches that G-d wrapped Himself [in a tallis] like one who leads the congregation in prayer, and showed Moses the order of prayer. He said to him, “Whenever Israel sins, let them perform before Me this order [of prayer], and I shall forgive them” (Rosh Hashanah 17b). Maharal (ibid.) explains the significance of being wrapped in a tallis. A tallis around the head blocks out outside distractions and helps one concentrate on one’s prayers. By appearing to Moses that way, G-d was teaching that when Jews concentrate on their prayers, G-d will reciprocate by concentrating on fulfilling their requests. Thus, G-d showed Moses not only the text of the prayers, but the manner in which they should be recited….”

    Interestingly, it is brought in Seforim that the first words of this verse ויעבר י-ה-ו-ה, VaYa’avor Hashem, in gematria are 288 + 26 = 314, the same as the Name Sha-dai. It is also brought that the initials of these words and the next word על, Al, are letters Vov Yud Ayin, in gematria are 6 + 10 + 70 = 86, and similarly the initials of the next words פניו ויקרא, Ponov V’aYikrah, letters Peh Vov, in gematria are also 80 + 6 = 86, the same as the gematria of the Name א-להים, Elokim, G-d.

    In addition it can be said that the next two words על פניו, Al Ponov, “before him,” in gematria are 100 + 146 = 246, and with 2 for the 2 words sum to 246 + 2 = 248, the same as אברהם, Avrohom, who likewise arouses mercy for his children and grandchildren after him, and the same as the 248 positive commandments that when we do them we likewise arouse Hashem’s mercy upon us. The next word ויקרא, VaYikra, “and He called out,” in gematria are 317, which as just pointed out is the same as the Name Sha-dai plus 3 for its3 letters, 314 + 3 = 317. Also interestingly the 3 Names that come next, Hashem Hashem E-l, are gematria 26 + 26 + 31 = 83, and with 3 for the 3 words sum to 83 + 3 = 86, the gematria of the Name Elokim.

    [Regarding the number 288, the gematria of the first word in this verse, it is the same as the 287 letters in the third paragraph of Shma plus 1 for the Kolel, or alternatively plus 1 for the letter Alef at the beginning of the next word in our prayers, the word א’מת, Emes. In Kabbalah 288 is a very significant number representing the number of fallen holy sparks associated with the creation of the world, but now is not time to elaborate on that.]

    Having again herein mentioned multiple Divine Names, therefore this is a fitting place to again stress that there obviously is Only One G-d, however He is called by different Names depending upon the context, in order to focus our attention on specific Attributes of G-d in His relationship with His creations.

    (To be continued.)

  1. The Jewish year ends with a 7 week period of comforting and consolation expressed in the Haftoras read aloud in Shul on Shabbos from the words of the Prophets predicting the end of exile and the coming of the redemption.

    The first of these seven is the Haftora read this past Shabbos, Shabbos Nachmu, from the words of Prophet Yeshayah, נחמו נחמו, Nachamu Nachamu, “Comfort ye, comfort ye, My people, says your G-d…” (Isaiah 40:1-26). This comforting message in the plain sense of the Scripture is amplified by recognition that the 4 letter word Nachmu at the beginning of this verse is gematria 50 + 8 + 40 + 6 = 104 = 4 x 26, i.e., it is a hint to a 4-fold revelation of Hashem, and repetition of the word Nachamu, i.e., 8 letters with gematria 104 + 104 = 208 = 8 x 26, hints to an 8-fold revelation of Hashem.

    There is a special connection of the number 8 to Moshiach, and correspondingly the two words at end of this 5 word verse, יאמר א-להיכם, Ymar E-lohaychem, “says your G-d,” are gematria 251 + 106 = 357, and with 1 for the Kolel, equals 358, the gematria of the word משיח, Moshiach.

    The middle word in the verse, עמי, Ahmi, My people, is gematria 70 + 40 + 10 = 120, a number symbolizing completeness, as in the verse “…therefore shall his days be one hundred and twenty years” (Genesis 6:3), and as in the 120 years of Moshe Rabbeinu’s life. All together the gematria of the first 3 words of the verse is 208 + 120 = 328, and with 1 for the Kolel is 329, which is the same as the combination of Divine Names Sha-dai and Yud-Heh, 314 + 15 = 329.

    The gematria of whole verse is 208 + 120 + 357 = 685, which is the same as two times the gematria of the Name Shadai, plus two times the gematria of the Name Hashem, plus 1 for each Name, plus 1 for a general Kolel to indicate that all these Names are One, 314 + 314 + 26 + 26 + 4 + 1 = 685.

    Alternatively, the gematria of the whole verse plus a Kolel of 1 for each of the 5 words of the verse, 685 + 5 = 690, and this is equal to the combination of the gematria for the Divine Names Sha-dai and Yud-Heh, and the gematria of Moshiach, plus a Kolel of 1 for each Name or Title, 314 + 15 + 358 + 3 = 690.

    In addition, the second verse in the Haftora starts with the two words דברו על, Dabru Al, “Speak upon,” “Speak upon the heart of Jerusalem and proclaim unto her, that her time of service is accomplished, that her guilt is paid off, that she has received of the hand of Hashem double for all her sins…” It is interesting that the gematria of these words is 212 + 100 = 312, and with a Kolel of 1 for each of the 2 words, 312 + 2 = 314, also the same as the gematria of the name Sha-dai.

    These two words together with the next word לב, Lev, “heart,” gematria 32, plus 1 for the Kolel, sum to 212 + 100 + 32 + 1 = 345, the same as the gematria of the combination of the Divine Names E-l and Sha-dai, and the same as the name Moshe. Similarly the word וקראו, V’kiru, “and proclaim,” that follows the word Jerusalem in this verse, is gematria 313, and with 1 for the Kolel, equals 314, again the same as the Name Sha-dai. The next word אלי-ה, Eileho, unto her, may be seen as composed of two Divine Names, the Name Alef Lamed, E-l, and the Name Yud Heh, thus these two words together hint to a triad of Divine Names, Sha-dai, E-l, and Yud Heh.

    Another example of combinations of Divine Names is in the first verse of Shma, where even the plain meaning of the verse is that the Divine Names Hashem and Elokim are One. On a hinted level, another example is in the very first two letters of the word Shma, Shin and Mem, which spell the word שם, Shem, “Name,” and in gematria these two letters sum to 300 + 40 = 340, which corresponds to the combination of the two Divine Names, Sha-dai and Hashem, since 314 + 26 = 340. Also the initials of these two Divine Names are hinted in the letters Shin and Mem, since as explained above the letter Shin is the initial of Sha-dai, and in the את בש, A-T Ba-Sh code, the initial letter Yud of Hashem transforms into a letter Mem.

    Once again various combinations of Divine Names have been explained, and again it is important to stress that the Divine Light that shines through all these Names is One and Only One.

    This is also expressly stated in other verses of the Torah, for example, in Hashem’s words to Moshe (Exodus 6:2-3), “And E-lohim spoke to Moshe and said to him ‘I am Hashem. And I appeared to Avrohom, Yitzchok, and Yaakov, as E-l Sha-dai, and did not allow them to know Me by My Name Hashem.’” This is a combination of four different Names, and it is clear that they all refer to One and the same Divinity.

    This is also evident in Moshe’s prayer at the beginning of Vo’Eschanan, the Sedra read last Shabbos (Deuteronomy 3:23-24), “And I pleaded with Hashem at that time saying; Ado-noi E-lohim (written Hashem)…,” again a combination of Divine Names, and it is obvious that they all refer to the same One G-d. In these verses, and in many others in the Torah, multiple Divine Names are used, but from the plain meaning and the plain context of the Scriptures, and likewise esoterically, it is fully evident that there is Only One G-d, and all the varying Names refer Only to Him.

    Awareness of these verses, and understanding their plain and inner meanings, and their promise of the coming revelation of Hashem and of the imminent coming of Moshiach, bolster our belief and knowledge that there will definitely be an end to exile when good will prevail forever over evil, and this surely enhances our feelings of comfort and consolation and renews our trust in Hashem and our hope for the onset of an extremely brilliant future very soon indeed.

    (To be continued.)

  2. Continuing with the hints to the Shma at the beginning of Sedrah Bamidbar:

    At the beginning of the Sedrah the Torah relates Hashem’s command to count all of the men Israel (Numbers 1:2), שאו את ראש כל עדת בני ישראל, Se’u Es Rosh Kol Adas Bnei Yisroel, “Count all the congregation of the Children of Israel…” The words Se’u Es Rosh, that are translated as “Count,” or “Take a census,” literally mean “Lift up the head.”

    This expression alludes to the Shma since the letters of the word שאו, Se’u, “Lift up,” spelled Shin, Alef, Vov, hint to the initial letter Shin of the first word, ש’מע, Sh’ma; the initial letter Alef of the last word of Shma, א-להיכם, E-lohaichem, or the initial letter Alef of the word א’מת, Emes, joined to the end of Shma, or the initial letter Alef of the last word of the first verse, א’חד, Echod; and the letter Vov, gematria 6, hints to the 6 words of the first verse, or alternatively to another traditional custom for when reciting Shma, to tilt one’s head slightly toward all 6 directions, up, down, front, back, right and left, when one prolongs the pronunciation of the word Echod, One, in order to concentrate and show with one’s movement that Hashem Echod rules over the heavens and the earth and everywhere throughout the 4 corners of the earth.

    This verse at the beginning of Bamidbar also stresses that the counting was of כל עדת בני ישראל, Kol Adas Bnei Yisroel, “the entire congregation of the Children of Israel,” and the word כל, Kol, “entire” or “all,” in gematria 50, corresponds to the 48 word of the first paragraph of Shma, plus the 2 words spelled by the two large letters in the first verse, עד, Eid, “witness,” and דע, Da, “know,” 50 = 48 + 2, as was previously explained.

    Indeed these two letters, Ayin Dalet, also follow immediately at the beginning of the very next word in this verse in Bamidbar, the word ע’ד’ת, Adas, here with the root meaning “congregation.” This word obviously also pertains to the recital of the Shma, since it is clearly pivotal for the congregation, and for the congregation’s worship of Hashem. [A future comment will also explain that the root letters Ayin Dalet spell out and allude to other Hebrew words as well, with shades of meaning that are also appropriate for being interwoven with the intentions inherent in these large letters, and with more connotations that are connected to the recital of the Shma.]

    Thematically, too, the idea of reciting Shma is also to elevate the heads and minds of Bnei Yisroel, “Hear – and Understand – O Israel,” to think lofty thoughts about Hashem’s Oneness and His dominion over all worlds, and as we have explained, the idea of counting, counting every word, every letter, and every member of the congregation of Israel, is also inherent in the Shma, especially as the recital of the Shma is an essential aspect of the congregational prayer service.

    ———-

    These words in Bamidbar verse 2 also contain another equal letter skip hint to the Name Sha-dai, very similar to the hint explained in the previous comment on verse 1: Starting from the 8th letter in the verse, the letter Shin at the end of the word ‘ראש, Rosh, head, skip 3 letters and the 4th letter is the Dalet in the middle of the word עד’ת, Adas, congregation, then skip another 3 letters and the 4th letter is the letter Yud at the end of the word ‘בני, Bnei, Children, ראש’ כל עד’ת בני’ ישראל.

    Both in verse 1 and in verse 2 the Name Sha-dai is revealed by skipping 3 letters and counting the 4th letter over a span of 9 total letters. In verse 1 the sequence starts with letter 13, Shin, then letter 17, Dalet, and then letter 21, Yud. In verse 2 the sequence starts with letter 8, Shin, then letter 13, Dalet, and then letter 17, Yud. It seems significant these hints to the Name Sha-dai appear hinted like this in successive verses at the beginning of a Sefer, and that the numbers associated with the position of these letters in these respective verses resonate and overlap, and these numbers are also relevant and have been discussed before in this discourse on the Shma.

    In reference to verse 1 it was explained that there is also a hint to another Name Sha-dai in the gematria of the letters that were skipped, and likewise for verse 2 a meaningful hint appears in the skipped letters: The gematria of the first 3 skipped letters, Chuf Lamed Ayin, is 120, and the gematria of the second 3 skipped letters, Tav Bais Nun, is 452, summing to 120 + 452 = 572, which is the same as the gematria of the next word in the verse, ישראל, Yisroel, 541, plus the gematria of the Name א-ל, E-l, 31, for a total of 541 + 31 = 572.

    Adding 1 for the Kolel, 572 +1 = 573, which is the gematria of Yisroel, 541, plus 32, the gematria of the word לב, Lev, heart, and together this represents the Israelite man wearing around his heart the Talis with 32 strings of Tzitzis.

    The Name Sha-dai is also hinted in these skipped letters since their sum 572 = 314 + 258, where 314 is the gematria of the Name Sha-dai, and 258 may be meaningfully understood in many ways, one example being that 258 = 248 + 10, hinting to the 248 positive commandments plus the 10 commandments, which as explained in many places, and as may also be further explained in another comment here, the 10 commandments are also hinted in the Shma and should be kept in mind when reciting the Shma.

    Alternatively, since the name Yisroel, 541 = 314 + 227, i.e., the gematria of the Name Sha-dai plus the gematria of the word ברכה, Brocha, “Blessing,” therefore 572 = 31 + 314 + 227, is the combination of the gematrias of the Names E-l Sha-dai and Brocha, Blessing. Additionally, with 1 for the Kolel, 227 + 1 = 228, which is the gematria of the word ברוך, Boruch, “Blessed is,” as in the first word of the Blessings composed by our sages for us to recite upon all occasions, including the Blessings connected with the saying the Shma, and as in the first word of the silent verse, Boruch Shem Kevod Malchuso L’Olam Vo’ed, “Blessed is the Name of His glorious kingdom forever and ever” [with the last word of this verse ending in the letters עד, Ayin Dalet, as will also be explained in another comment].

    Alternatively the number 572, plus a Kolel of 1 for each of the 4 words spanned by this string of letters, sums to 572 + 4 = 576, which 576 = 2 x 288, and as explained in a previous comment, 288 corresponds to the 287 letters of the third paragraph of Shma plus 1 for the Kolel, alluding to the 288 holy sparks from which the world was created, and the doubling of this number may hint to the inner and outer aspects of these sparks, which are all created and controlled by Hashem E-l Sha-dai.

    ———-

    The Torah continues in the next verse (1:3) with a description of those who were to be counted, כל יצא צבא, Kol Yotzei Tzovo, “all who are able to go out to the army.” It is interesting that in gematria these 3 words sum to 50 + 101 + 93 = 244, and with a Kolel of 1 for each of the 3 words, and 1 for the united phrase, the sum is 244 + 3 + 1 = 248, the same as the number of words associated with the recital of the Shma, and the same as the number of positive commandments, and the same as the gematria of the name Avrohom.

    Additionally the initials of these words, Kuf Yud Tzadi, are gematria 20 + 10 + 90 = 120, a number denoting completeness, as in 12 x 10, indicating the completeness of the Twelve Tribes, and as explained in the previous comment, also indicating the completeness of the years of man’s life and the years of Moshe’s life. The final letters of these words, Lamed Alef Alef, are gematria 30 + 1 + 1 = 32, the gematria of the word Lev, heart, which beats throughout man’s life, which and corresponds to the 32 strings of Tzitzis on the Talis that one wears over one’s heart.

    This phrase Kol Yotzei Tzovo also alludes to the Divine Name צ-באות, Tze-vaos, indicating that Hashem is the “L-rd of Hosts,” i.e., the “Commander in Chief” of the legions of heaven and of the legions of the earth. The Name Tze-vaos does not occur explicitly in the Torah itself, but appears for the first time in the Book of Shmuel, in the prayer of his mother Chana, and then frequently in Nevi’im and Kesuvim, and always in association with other Divine Names. However in the Torah the Bnei Yisroel are called “Tzivos Hashem,” “the army of G-d,” right from their Exodus from Egypt (Exodus 12:41), and that is the first time that a word with the exact letters that could also spell the Name Tze-vaos occur together in the Torah [see also Genesis 2:1, Exodus 6:26, and in many places].

    In the context of this discussion it is also relevant that as explained in many places the recital of the Shma and performing the Mitzvos of Shma, Tefillin, Mezuzah, and Tzitzis, also have a special Segulah, beneficial quality, of being able to draw forth Hashem’s protection and ensure the success of Israel’s armies in the battles and wars they wage. Therefore in our recital of the Shma and in our performance of these Mitzvos we surely should also have this in mine, especially in times such as this, when Hashem’s protection and salvation is so needed and necessary, both on a personal and congregational level.

    Interestingly, the gematria of the Name Tze-vaos is 499, and with 1 for the Kolel it is an even 500. Since Hashem is the L-rd of Hosts over both the spiritual realms and the over the physical realms, and this is inherent in what we proclaim in the Shma when we declare Hashem’s dominion over the heavens and over the earth, therefore it comes out nicely that 2 x 500 = 1000, corresponding to the number of letters in the three paragraphs of Shma.

    (To be continued.)

  3. In previous comments three distinct traditional hand and head movements that are made while closing one’s eyes and reciting the first verse of Shma were explained (and generally one’s eyes are not opened until after the recitation of the silent verse Boruch Shem).

    It is possible that these three customs themselves also correspond to the three letters of the Name Sha-dai:

    ש. The first custom is holding one’s hand so that the three middle fingers form a letter Shin on the forehead, the thumb forms a letter Dalet placed over the right eyelid, and the pinky forms a letter Yud over the left eyelid. This corresponds to the letter Shin of the Name Sha-dai, since in this manner the Name Sha-dai is spelled out, and the letter Shin formed by one’s middle fingers is the most prominent feature.

    ד. The second custom is holding one’s hand with four fingers stretched out over one’s eyes and the thumb pointing up. This corresponds to the letter Dalet of the Name Sha-dai, since in this manner one’s hand forms the shape of an upside-down letter Dalet, and Dalet is gematria 4, and the 4 four fingers over the eyes are the most prominent feature.

    י. The third custom is tilting one’s head up and down and to the four directions when reciting the word Echod and meditating on the Oneness of G-d. This corresponds to the letter Yud of the Name Sha-dai, since basically the head itself is shaped like a letter Yud, and this slight circular motion of the head traces the shape of a Yud.

    [There are also other customs, such as to cover one’s eyes with two hands, one hand over each eye, or to not cover one’s eyes with one’s hands, or not to shut one’s eyes at all, but the customs explained are the most prevalent. Some apparently have another custom, to close one eye with the thumb and the other eye with one or more of the fingers, and in doing so one’s hand assumes a round shape that may also be associated with the shape of the letter Yud, and therefore this custom could also correspond to the letter Yud in the overall spelling out of the Name Sha-dai for the various hand-head movements associated with the Shma.]

    Practicing these customs while meditating during Shma is a powerful way to strengthen one’s connection to El Sha-dai, Hashem Echod. It is important to remember however that none of these customs are requirements, and it is best to do whatever helps one to concentrate and fix one’s attention on Hashem and on the meaning of the words of the Shma.

    An interesting hint is brought with regard to the hand and fingers covering the eyes while reciting the Shma, that the first verse of Sham, שמע ישראל ה’ אלקינו ה’ אחד, Shma Yisroel Hashem Elokeinu Hashem Echod, “Hear O Israel, Hashem is our G-d, Hashem is One,” is gematria 410 + 541 + 26 + 102 + 26 + 13 = 1118, and similarly the combination of words for hand, thumb, and the other fingers, יד גודל אצבע אמה קמיצה זרת, Yad Godel Etzba Amo Kemitza Zeres, sum to 14 + 43 + 163 + 46 + 245 + 607 = 1118.

    It should be kept in mind that the recital of the Shma must not be merely a recital with one’s lips, but rather it should involves one’s entire body, soul, and might, and certainly these movements proscribed by tradition are part of this requirement of praying in a manner that “all my limbs shall exclaim” (Psalms 35:10). This is also one of the explanations for why it is customary to bend and sway frontward and backward and right and left (“Shukling”) when praying or when studying Torah.

    It should also be kept in mind that in many respects these hand and head movements while reciting the Shma are similar to a form of salute, such as is performed by servicemen in the military, and since the congregation of Israel stands and fights for Hashem, therefore they are “Tzivos Hashem,” the “Army of G-d,” and these customs likewise can be considered as forms of salutes and pledges of allegiance to Hashem Tze-vaos, our Commander in Chief.

    ———-

    During the weekday morning service there are also other actions traditionally associated with the recital of the Shma. The custom is to grasp the Tzitzis in one’s left hand and hold them opposite one’s heart throughout the recital of Shma. This is done starting from in the prayer “With abundant love You have loved us, Hashem, our G-d,” which ends with the blessing “Blessed are You, Hashem, Who chooses His people Israel with love,” which is said right before the recital of the Shma. Generally the Tzitzis are held in this way from when one says the words “gather us from the four corners of the earth,” which hints to the four corners of the Talis to which the Tzitzis are tied.

    The custom is that when reciting certain relevant words in the third paragraph of Shma, and in the prayer immediately after the Shma, one lovingly kisses the Tzitzis. On each occasion this is done the Tzitzis are first passed by over the right eye, then over the left eye, and then they are lovingly kissed with one’s lips.

    Also before reciting the Shma one should touch one’s Tefillin and make sure they are being worn properly, with the hand Tefillin on the top of the biceps muscle of the left upper arm, across from one’s heart, and the head Tefillin on one’s forehead between one’s eyes and above the hairline. The Tefillin are not kissed directly for the recitation of the Shma (since that is not possible to do while wearing them). Rather one first kisses one’s fingertips and then touches and transfer the kiss to the Tefillin, or one first touches the Tefillin and then kisses one’s fingertips, or one does both one after the other.

    In the first paragraph of Shma we kiss the hand Tefillin while saying the words “you shall bind them as a sign on your arm,” and we kiss the head Tefillin while saying the words “and as an emblem between your eyes.” (In the first paragraph these verses are in the singular).

    In the second paragraph of Shma we similarly kiss the hand Tefillin while saying the words “you shall bind them as a sign on your arm,” and we kiss the head Tefillin while saying the words “and as an emblem between your eyes.” (In the second paragraph these verses are in the plural).

    In the third paragraph of Shma we kiss the Tzitzis while saying the word “Tzitzis,” each of the three times this word is said.

    Immediately after and in connection with the Shma we kiss the Tzitzis while saying the word אמת, Emes, True, and in the following Emes V’Yatziv prayer we also kiss the Tzitzis when saying the word קימת, Kayemes, “endure,” and when saying the word לעד, Lo’ad, “forever.”

    [The text of this prayer: “True (אמת, Emes), and certain, and established, and enduring, and fair, and faithful, and beloved, and cherished, and delightful, and pleasant, and awesome, and powerful, and correct, and accepted, and good, and beautiful is this affirmation to us forever and ever. True, the G-d of the universe is our King, the Rock of Jacob is the Shield of our salvation. From generation to generation He endures and His Name endures and His throne is well established, His sovereignty and faithfulness forever endure (קימת, Kayemes). His words are living and enduring, faithful and delightful forever (לעד, Lo’ad) and to all eternity; for our forefathers and for us, for our children and for our generations, and for all the generations of Your servant Israel’s offspring.”]

    All together there are 10 customary kisses given to the Tefillin and to the Tzitzis. The Tefillin are kissed 2 times in the first paragraph and 2 times in the second paragraph, and the Tzitzis are kissed 3 times in the third paragraph of Shma and 3 times in the prayer immediately after the Shma, for a total of 2 + 2 + 3 + 3 = 10 kisses directed to Hashem and to His Mitzvos.

    These special traditional customs may be understood as parts of a single set of salutes, pledges of allegiance, and kisses directed to Hashem as part of reciting the Shma. All together they sum to 3 + 10 = 13 distinct salutation gestures, with the gematria 13 again corresponding to the theme of אחד, Echod, One, that G-d is One, and אהבה, Ahavah, Love, that we are connected to Him with Love.

    By having proper intentions while reciting the Shma, and by practicing these time-honored and cherished customs, we will surely be able to arouse Hashem’s 13 Attributes of Mercy, to arouse and bring forth salvation for us, for our families, for the whole Congregation of Israel, and for the all the people of the entire world.

    (To be continued.)

  4. In addition to what was explained before, there is another hint to the Name Sha-dai in the first verse of Sefer Bamidbar, since the last letters of the three words ‘באחד’ לחדש’ השני, b’echo-D’ lachode-Sh’ hashein-I’ (“in the first [day] of the month the second [month]”), the final letters Dalet Shin and Yud are again the letters of the Name Sha-dai.

    Significantly, like the previous hints to the Name Sha-dai in the first and second verses of Bamidbar that were explained above, these three letters also hint to the Name Sha-dai by means of an equal letter skipping of 3 letters, first Dalet (the 35th letter of the verse), then the 4th letter afterwards is a Shin (the 39th letter), then again skip 3 letters and the 4th letter afterwards is a Yud (the 43rd letter of the verse). Further, the average of the position of these 3 letters in the verse is 39, like position of the middle letter Shin, and 39 = 3 x 13, i.e., 3 times the gematria of the word אחד, Echod, One, which is also the root of the first word in this 3-word series, באחד, B’Echod, “on the first.”

    Although the letters seem to be out of order, with the Dalet before the Shin, still, when viewed from another angle, the disarrangement is understood to actually highlight the primary theme. This corresponds to the middle letter Shin being primary in the order of the letters Dalet Shin and Yud in the way the hand is held for reciting Shma, with Dalet shaped by the thumb, Shin by the three middle fingers, and Yud by the pinky, and yet the middle letter Shin retains prominence since it is formed by three fingers, not just one, and since it is held on the forehead above the eyes, above the thumb and pinky.

    As noted before, the sign of the Name Sha-dai in one one’s hand for Shma corresponds to the way the words “Kosesh l’Hashem,” “Holy to Hashem,” were embossed on the Tzitz, the Kohen Gadol’s golden headband, where the Name “Hashem,” although later in the sequence of these words, was embossed higher up on the headband, in order to give prominence to the Name.

    This order also corresponds the previously mentioned hint in the third paragraph of Shma to the Name Sha-dai, in the word קד’ש’י’ם, Kedoshim, “and you shall be holy unto G-d,” where also the order of the letters is also Dalet Shin Yud, with Shin in the middle.

    The first set of three letters that are skipped while forming this hint to the Name Sha-dai, ‘באחד’ לחדש’ השני, letters Lamed Ches Dalet, sum to 30 + 8 + 4 = 42, and the second set of three letters, Heh Shin Nun, sum to 5 + 300 + 50 = 355. It is well known that 42 is a significant number, representing the mystical Divine Name of 42 letters, and 355 may be interpreted many ways, including that with a Kolel of 1 for each of the 3 letters, 355 + 3 = 358, the gematria of the word Moshiach.

    Further the sum of all 6 skipped letters when summed together is 42 + 355 = 397, and 397 is the 78th prime number, which is also very significant. Interestingly 355 with 1 for the Kolel is 356, which is the same as the gematria of Sha-dai plus the mystical Name of 42 letters, since 314 + 42 = 356, thus this indicates another hint to the revelation of the Name Sha-dai.

    Additionally, with a Kolel of 1 for each of the 3 words, these skipped letters sum to 42 + 355 + 3 = 400, hinting to the 4 letters of the Name Hashem, the 4 corners of the Talit, the significant numbers 40 and 400, and so on.

    The sum of the gematria of these three words באחד לחדש השני, B’echod Lacchodesh Hasheini, is 15 + 342 + 365 = 722. It is possible to say that this corresponds to a combination of two times the Name Sha-dai, the Name Hashem, and the Name Ad-nai, together with a Kolel of 1 for each of these 3 different Divine Names, 314 + 314 + 26 + 65 + 3 = 722.

    Alternatively 722 = 2 x 361, and this represents a double dose of the supernatural, since 361 is 1 more than the full 360 degrees of a circle. Also significant is that 361 = 19 x 19, and 19 is the 8th prime number, with the number 8 again representing the supernatural since it is 1 more than the 7-day natural cycle.

    Further, the initial letters of the words ב’אחד ל’חדש ה’שני, Beis Lamed Heh, are the reverse of the word הלב, HaLev, “the heart,” which indicates the importance of having consciousness of the Divine Names in our hearts, frontwards and backwards. Moreover, the gematria of these three initial letters is 2 + 30 + 5 = 37, like the gematria of the word דגל, Degel, flag, and the topic of the flags of the 12 Tribes is featured prominently in the Sedra, as will soon be explained in greater detail.

    Now examine again the previous two words, the 7th and 8th words in the Sedra, באהל מועד, B’Ohel Moed, “in the Tent of Meeting,” and note that the initials of these words are letters Mem Bais, gematria 42, representing the mystical Divine Name of 42 letters.

    Also note that the word B’Ohel is gematria 38, which resonates with the numbers just mentioned, since 38 = 19 + 19, and also since it is the same as 37 + 1 for the Kolel, and thus this stresses and reverberates with similar themes.

    Also note that in the word Moed, Meeting, again the important letters Ayin and Dalet form the root of this word, and they are reminiscent of the large letters Ayin and Dalet in the first verse of Shma.

    Notice how the letters Ayin and Dalet of the first verse of Shma, being large letters, stand out like “flags” and “banners” for us to see when reading the verse. Interestingly, the letters Ayin and Dalet are gematria 70 + 4 = 74, and 74 = 2 x 37, i.e., 2 times the gematria of the word דגל, Degel, flag, since these letters are two “flags” that fly eternally as an עדות, Eidus, testimony to the connection between Hashem and Israel, as shall be further explained.

    These hints go on and on endlessly, but for now let’s pause after mentioning just one more interesting point about the census described here at the beginning of Sedrah Bamidbar. Hashem commanded for the census to be conducted by Moshe and Aharon and 12 leaders representing the 12 Tribes. It is significant that the gematria of Moshe, plus the gematria of Aharon, plus 1 for each of the 12 Princes of the Tribes who assisted them, sums to 345 + 256 + 12 = 613.

    (To be continued.)

  5. Sedra Bamidbar starts by relating the census of Israel’s 12 Tribes, the separate census of the 13th Tribe Levi, and the campsite layout and the marching order of the Tribes, with Leviim and the Mishkan Ohel Moed, Sanctuary Tabernacle of Meeting-Testimony in the center. Some basic aspects of the arrangement of the Israelite camp include the following:

    The 12 tribes camped in 4 groups of 3, arranged according to the 4 directions. Yehudah, with Yissochar and Zevulun, on the east, first to march; Reuben, with Shimon and Gad, on the south, second to march; Ephraim, with Menashe and Binyamin, on the west, next to march; and Dan, with Asher and Naphtali on the north, last to march.

    The tribe of Levi camped in the center of the other 12 tribes, also arranged into 4 camps facing the 4 directions, with Moshe and Aharon and their families on the east, the family of Kehath on the south, the family of Gershon on the west, and the family of Merari on the north. The tribes surrounded the Leviim and the Leviim surrounded the Sanctuary at the very center. On the march the Leviim would carry the disassembled Tabernacle and march with it in the center of the marching order, after the divisions of Yehuda and Reuven and before the divisions of Ephraim and Dan.

    In connection to our discussion it is evident that the 4 cornered arrangement of the camp corresponds to the 4 cornered shape of the Talis, a rectangular 4 cornered garment, and when an individual Jew puts on the Talis with the proper intension he assumes a form that is representative of the entire encampment of Israel.

    Together with the tribe of Levi, there are 12 + 1 = 13 tribes, and since 13 is the gematria of the word Echod, one, therefore this resonates with the idea that Israel is Am Echod, one people, united together as one, with each individual included in the whole congregation and the whole congregation included in each individual.

    As noted before the word אחד, Echod, one, is composed of letters symbolic of Talis with Tzitzis since the gematria of its letters, 1 + 8 + 4, represent 1 for the Talis garment, 8 for the 8 strings of Tzitzis, and 4 for the 4 corners of the garment. In addition the letters the wor Echod sum to 13, and the 8 stings plus 5 knots of Tzitzis likewise sum to 13.

    When viewed from the perspective the total number of larger groups among the camps, it is seen that there are 4 general Israelite camps plus the general camp of the Levites, and these sum to 4 + 1 = 5 general camps, and the number 5 corresponds to the 5 knots of Tzitzis.

    When viewed from a more detailed perspective, since the Levi camp also was split into 4 groups, therefore it can be seen that the 4 Israelite camps plus the 4 more specific Levi family camps, sum to 4 + 4 = 8 camps, and the number 8 corresponds to the 8 strings of Tzitzis.

    When considering the total number of specific groups, there are 12 tribes plus 4 groups of Levi families, and 12 + 4 = 16, which corresponds to the 16 total whole strings of Tzitzis on the Talis, before the strings are folded over and tied, 4 strings no each of the 4 corners.

    The Mishkon, the Sanctuary and Dwelling Place of Hashem, where the divine services were performed, was in the center of the camp, and corresponds to a 17th aspect, representing an even higher level (and of course in the Mishkon itself there were also various levels of increasing sanctity). As previously noted 17 is the 7th prime number, and it is also the sum of the first 4 prime numbers, since 2 + 3 + 5 + 7 = 17, and in small gematria the number 17 is 1 + 7 = 8, again corresponding to the 8 strings of Tzitzis, and alluding to what is higher than nature.

    ———-

    As previously mentioned, the Tribes camped and marched under Degalim, flags or banners, and this is mentioned prominently in Sedra Bamidbar. In the Torah it is only explicit that there were 4 flags, one for each division in each of the 4 directions, however in Medrash it is recorded that each tribe had its own flag as well, just as each tribe had its name inscribed on its own representative gemstone affixed to the breastplate of the Kohen Gadol.

    It is interesting that the root word דגל, Degel, flag, occurs in the Torah only in connection with these banners for the divisions of the Tribes. This includes 9 times in Sedra Bamidbar, and 4 more times in Sedra B’ha’aloscha, later in the Sefer Bamidbar, chapter 10. That makes a total of 9 + 4 = 13 times the word Degel occurs in the Torah, and this corresponds to the gematria of the words Echod, one, and Ahava, love.

    In all the rest of Scripture the root word Degel occurs only 4 more times, 3 times in the Song of Songs, the song of love between Hashem and Israel, and 1 time in Psalms, in Psalm 20, as was previously discussed (and see also below). The total number of times the word Degel occurs in all of Scripture is then 13 + 4 = 17, and these and it is amazing that these numbers also clearly resonate with what was just explained in connection with the arrangement of the Israelite encampment and marching in the desert.

    The connection of the idea of a flag or banner to Talis and Tzitzis is also self-evident, since a flag is basically usually a square or rectangular cloth that is held up by strings and knots that tie it to a staff or pole and held high so that it is seen from afar. The idea of the flags of the Tribes thus corresponds to the theme of the Talis and Tzitzis, a rectangular cloth with strings and knots, which ideally are worn in a way that they can be seen, as in the verse from the third paragraph of Shma, “and they shall be unto you as Tzitzis and you shall see it,” tying us to a high and lofty spiritual level where we are eternally attached to our tradition, to the historical leaders of our tribes, and to Hashem, the ultimate One Leader of all.

    Incidentally the root of the word מטה, Mateh, used in Sedra Bamidbar and throughout the Torah in reference to the “Tribes” of Israel, initially has a meaning of “pole,” “rod” or “staff,” and refers to the staff or scepter in the hand of the leader of the clan or tribe. It has this meaning, for example, later in Sefer Bamidbar (Numbers 17:16-26), in the episode of the miraculous sprouting of Aharon’s staff in the test of Aharon’s being chosen for the high priesthood, in which specifically his staff blossomed and gave forth fruit while with the staffs of the leaders of the tribes did not sprout.

    Incidentally in the episode of the test of Aharon’s staff the Torah states (verse 17:23) ויצא פרח ויצץ ציץ ויגמל שקדים, “and it [Aharon’s staff] put forth bud(s), and bloomed blossom(s), and bore ripe almonds.” The words ויצץ ציץ, Vayotzeitz Tzitz, “and it bloomed blossom(s),” share the same root as the word ציצית, Tzitzis, since the Tzitzis strings so-to-speak also bloom forth from the Talis garment. The Tzitzis thus also are a reminder of the holiness of Aharon, and wearing Tzitzis is like wearing the priestly garments, and with Tzitzis we too are able to miraculously bloom and blossom forth into holy servants of Hashem in the manner of Aharon Kohen Gadol. (Other meanings in the root Tzitz will be explained in a coming comment, and also other connections to the priestly garments will be explained.)

    ———-

    As mentioned before the word דגל, Degel, flag, is gematria 37, and thus it is also connected to the number 37 x 10 = 370, which as explained above is the gematria of the word שלם, Sholeim, “complete,” and similarly the word שלום, Sholom, peace, when written without the letter Vov. The number 37 is the 12th prime number and also represents the completeness of the 12 Tribes, as well as a completeness of the 10 Sephiros, since 3 + 7 = 10, with 3 x 10 = 30 corresponding to the 3 higher Sefiros and with 7 corresponding to the 7 lower Sefiros.

    Previously I also wrote that of the 70 words in Psalm 20, which hint to the last 70 years of exile, which finish this year, the 33rd word of the Psalm is נדגל, Nidgol, “we will raise our banner” [here fixing the previous typo where I accidentally left out the last letter Lamed]. Previously I explained that this hints to Lag B’Omer, the 33rd day of he Omer, since the last two letters are Gimel Lamed, the same as La”g, and the custom on Lag B’Omer is to parade around with our flags raised and the like. There I also explained that one of the meanings of the word formed by the root letters Gimel Lamed, גל, is an Uprising, a Heap, a Hill, and similarly the beginning of the word Nidgol, letters Nun Dalet, spell נד, Naid, itself a word that means a Heap, an Uprising, etc., so together then the word Nid-gol has a mean that corresponds to a double heap, i.e., Hod she’b’Hod.

    The full verse (Psalm 20:6) states, “May we sing for joy at Your salvation, and raise our banner in the Name of our G-d, may Hashem fulfill all your requests.” By having proper intention in our prayers, and “raising our banner in the Name of our G-d,” we are assured that our requests will be fulfilled, including the request for the end to exile and the dawning of a new era with the coming of Moshiach.

    Regarding the modern day flag of Israel, flying proudly now over the reestablished nation of Israel for 70 years, it is common knowledge that its design was based on the Talis and the blue color was based on the Techeiles-blue color of the ancient Tzitzis string. See Wiki’s entry on the Israeli flag for example, “Origin of the flag: The blue stripes are intended to symbolize the stripes on a tallit, the traditional Jewish prayer shawl. The portrayal of a Star of David on the flag of the State of Israel is a widely acknowledged symbol of the Jewish people and of Judaism. The Israelites used a blue coloured dye called tekhelet…” This is also explained in many other places as well.

    Significantly, Ezra ended his latest blog post, “The Prime Directive,” with a discussion of numbers that relate to the Star of David, which is portrayed in the center of the Israeli flag. He wrote very interesting things about “Star numbers,” which are “centered figurate numbers” that represent a centered hexagram, in other words six-pointed stars like the Magen David. He wrote:

    “The numerical value of Israel (541) also is a Star number, the 9th…. the 3rd Star number is 73, representing the Torah’s first verse (2701) as the sum of the integers from 1 – 73. Incidentally, the 2nd star number is 37 and 2701 = 73 x 37.”

    It is interesting that the numbers 73 and 37 are related in that they are the same digits just in reverse order, and as has been explained here, 37 is the gematria of the word Degel, flag, and it is entirely appropriate that the Magen David is the emblem on the Israeli flag.

    Ezra was correct when he concluded his post by stating, “The first star number, though, is the most important of all, 13, the numerical value of Echad (One) and Ahava, (love). With this, we wish you a Shabbat shalom. This is a concept we will develop further in the final article. In the meantime, when you look at anything in this world look past the forgery and the fake, look past the words and works of man, and see the hand of G-d in it all.”

    We are grateful for all the revelations so far and look forward to more wonders still yet to come.

    (To be continued).

  6. In the previous comment a number of perspectives were given regarding the divisions of Israel’s encampment in the desert. When viewed from yet another perspective the camp is also perfectly symbolized by the 6 pointed Magen David Star:

    The 4 triangular points on the sides of the Magen David correspond to the 4 divisions of tribes that camped facing the 4 compass directions. The 3 lines that comprise each triangular point correspond to the 3 tribes in each division, thus the star’s 4 side points correspond to the 4 x 3 = 12 tribes.

    The triangular point at the bottom of the Magen David corresponds to the camp of the Leviim, with the 3 lines of this triangular point corresponding to the 3 Levite families Kehos, Gershon and Merari. The Leviim correspond to the bottom point of the star because it was the task of the Leviim to physically disassemble the Tabernacle Sanctuary, carry it from place to place, and to prepare the ground and erect it on the site of each encampment, and also to physically guard it and its location. The Leviim thus correspond to the lower point, the base of the Magen Dovid, because of their mission to attach the Tabernacle to the ground.

    The triangular point at the top of the Magen David corresponds to the camp of Moshe and Aharon and the Kohanim, with the 3 lines of this triangular point corresponding to 1 for Moshe, the head of the government, the position of the King, 1 for Aharon, the position of the High Priest, and 1 for sons of Aharon, the rest of the regular Kohanim priests. The task of Moshe, Aharon, and the Kohanim, was to spiritually lift up and elevate the nation, and therefore they correspond to the upper point of the 6 triangular points of the Magen Dovid.

    The difference between this perspective of the camp arrangement, and the last perspective that was explained, is that from this point of view the campsite of the families of Moshe and Aharon are not viewed as 1 level, but rather as 3 distinct levels.

    [It would also be possible to subdivide their camp into 2 levels, i.e., the family of Moshe and the family of Aharon, and also into 4 levels, since the regular Kohanim, the sons of Aharon, could be viewed as 2, the family of Elozor and the family of Isomer, the 2 sons of Aharon remaining after the death of Nadov and Avihu at the Mishkon’s inauguration.]

    From this perspective, the 6 points of the star correspond to the 4 compass directions, east, south, west and north, and the 2 height directions, up and down. It is possible that these 6 directions can be viewed as joined together in the manner of 4-2, i.e., as a reflection of the number 42, and thus the Magen David also hints to the Name of 42 Letters, which is associated with the 42 campsites of Israel’s sojourn in the desert.

    All together then the Magen David star consists of 6 triads of 3 lines each, summing to 6 x 3 = 18 lines, representing the חי, Chai, “living camp” of Israel, and this is fittingly symbolized on the flag of the eternally living nation of Israel.

    The center of the Magen David star, which binds and unifies all 6 points together, is a distinct 7th area, which obviously corresponds to the Sanctuary Tabernacle in the center of the camp. Together with the previous 18 lines which are 18 levels of Israel’s campsite arrangement, this center space therefore represents a 19th space and a 19th level.

    These numbers, 7 and 19, that identify the center primary area, are significant in that 7 is the 4th prime number and 19 is the 8th prime number. Therefore based on this perspective there is another hint in the campsite arrangement of Israel to the Talis and Tzitzis, with 7, the 4th prime number, corresponding to the 4 corners of the Talis, and to the 4 strings on each corner before being folded over and tied, and with 19, the 8th prime number, corresponding to the 8 finished strings of Tzitzis on each corner.

    In addition, the numbers 7 + 19 = 26, the gematria of the Name Hashem. Further, when viewed from a wider perspective, in addition to the 6 triangles forming the 6 points of the Magen David, there are 2 larger triangles, one point up and one pointing down, that form the Magen David. Therefore joining these perspectives together there are a combination 2 + 6 = 8 triangles, again corresponding to the 8 strings of Tzitzis. Viewed another way, these are 2 large triangles plus 6 small triangles, and with “large” interpreted as times 10, and “small” interpreted as simple digits, their combination corresponds to 20 + 6 = 26, another hint to the gematria of the Name Hashem.

    Also significantly, the word כוכב, Kochav, star, starts with letters Chuf Vov, gematria 26, again hinting to the Name Hashem, and the last two letters Chuf Beis gematria 22 hint to the 22 letters of the Alef-Beis. The full genatria of the word Kochav is gematria 20 + 6 + 20 + 2 = 48, which corresponds to the 48 words of the first paragraph of Shma. When written without the letter Vov, the gematria of the word Kochav is 20 + 20 + 2 = 42, corresponding to the 42 Letter Name.

    The words מגן דוד, Mogen David, Shield of David, are gematria 93 + 14 = 107, and Ezra often writes about how this number is very special, since it is the 28th prime number, the 11th of very few Mersenne primes, and significantly it is the sum of the integers from 1 to 107 is 5778, thus 5778, this special year, is the 107th triangular number. Additionally Ezra writes that adding the triangular numbers corresponding to the digits in 5778, i.e., triangular numbers with 5 levels, 7 levels, 7 levels and 8 levels, also sums to 15 + 28 + 28 + 36 = 107. Further 5778 = 54 x 107, with 54 being 3 times 18, Chai, and so on.

    Similarly Ezra writes about the number 107 that the ordinal values of the Hebrew names for the Sun, Moon, and Earth, i.e., חמה Camah, לבנה Levanah, and ארץ, Ertz, sum to 33 + 26 + 48 = 107, again this special number. Also “the distance from the Earth to the Sun is the exact equivalent to 107 Suns, and the Earth orbits the Sun at 107,000 KPH (66,600 MPH). And since everything in our world is reflected in (or from) the Torah it is noteworthy that there are 107,000 letters in the Torah preceding the 10 Commandments.”

    [I’ve only brought a fraction of what I’ve seen from Ezra about this, and I’ve only seen a fraction of Ezra’s posts, so there is much, much more. Was it mentioned that the small gematria of 107 is 1 + 0 + 7 = 8, another special number? This is just scratching the surface of all the hints that abound.]

    Together the words Kochav Magen Dovid, Star Shield of David, sum to 48 + 93 + 14 = 155. This could represent 155 = 5 x 31, i.e., 5 times the Name E-l, or alternatively with 1 for the Kolel, 155 + 1 = 156 = 6 x 26, i.e., 6 times the Name Hashem.

    The number 156 is also the gematria of the name יוסף, Yosef, which in addition to the son of Yaakov named Yosef, and in addition to the tribe named Yosef, also refers to all 10 tribes of the Northern Kingdom of Israel, and at times even refers to all of Israel, since Yosef fed and supported all of them when they went down to Egypt and therefore they are all called by his name, and similarly Moshiach ben Yosef fights for all of Israel.

    The number 156 is also the gematria of the word ציון, Tziyon, Zion, and with this and all of the above it is understood how entirely fitting it is for the Magen Dovid star to be represented on the flag of Israel.

    The word Tziyon is also a closely related to the word ציצית, Tzitzis, since both words start with letters Tzdi Yud, with gematria 90 + 10 = 100, the complete number. Further the word Tziyon actually means a “mark” or “sign,” i.e., Zion is the sign of Hashem’s presence in Israel, and similarly, with regard to our discussion, the Tzitzis are a sign of Hashem’s presence in the individual Jewish person who wears them, and in the form of the flag that is patterned after the Tzitzis, extends Hashem’s presence over all of Israel.

    All of these ideas are also obviously closely connected to the theme of Moshiach, and wearing Tzitzis also obviously fans the spark and the star of the aspect of Moshiach in each individual, and certainly brings the coming of the Moshiach ben David ever closer.

    (To be continued.)

  7. Continuing from the previous comment, there is also another way to view the Magen David star as corresponding to the encampment of Israel in the desert:

    There are 12 lines on the outside perimeter of the star, 2 lines for each of the 6 triangular points of the star, and these correspond nicely to the 12 tribes who camped on the outside around the Mishkan Tabernacle. In contrast the 6 lines of the hexagon on the inside of the star correspond to the 6 families of the Leviim, i.e., the families of Kehos, Gershon, Merari, Moshe, Aharon, and Aharon’s sons, who camped inside the 12 tribes, closer to the Mishkan in the center.

    As for the 2 larger intertwined triangles of the more general perspective, they may also be understood as symbolizing the Jewish people a number of different ways. For example, one large triangle may symbolize the 3 forefathers Avrohom, Yitzchok and Yakov, and the second large triangle may symbolize their children, the congregation of Israel, composed of Kohanim, Leviim and Yisroelim.

    Also the 6 triangular points of the Magen Dovid may correspond to 6 Ushpizin and their spiritual archetypes, Avrohom, Yitzchok, Yakov, Moshe, Aharon, and Yosef, with the 7th level symbolized by the hexagon in the middle, corresponding to 7th Ushpizin, Dovid and Dovid Malka Moshicha.

    ———-

    In the physical realm the 6 triangular points of the Magen David may represent the 6 spatial directions, right, left, front, back, up, down, with the central focus point, the 7th level in the center, the intersection of the x, y and z axes, representing the point of origin and point of rest for the dimensions of length, breadth and height.

    In the sky above the 6 points of the Magen David may symbolize the 6 moving heavenly bodies visible to the human eye that shine with reflected light, the Moon, Mars, Venus, Mercury, Jupiter, and Saturn, with the central 7th point in the center symbolizing the illuminating Sun in the center of the solar system.

    Here below on planet earth the 6 points of the star may symbolize the 6 inhabited continental land masses, Europe, Asia, Africa, North America, South America, and Australia, with the center symbolizing the holy land, Israel, which is also physically located at the center of the three continents Europe-Asia-Africa at the crossroads of civilization.

    Likewise, temporally, the 6 triangular points of the Magen David correspond to the 6 days of creation, the 6 days of the week, with the center space symbolizing Shabbos, the holy day of rest, when physical work is not done. The 12 lines of the perimeter may correspond to the 12 months of the year, to the 12 signs of the zodiac, to the 12 hours of the day and to the 12 hours of the night.

    The Magen David may also represent the Jewish holidays. The 2 larger triangles may symbolize Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur, the 2 High Holidays, and the 6 triangular points may represent the 3 biblical festivals, Pesach, Shevuos, and Sukkos, and the 3 rabbinic festivals, Purim, Chanuka, and Tisha B’Av, with the center space again representing the Shabbos.

    ———-

    It is also possible to view the Magen David as representing the Torah, as may be seen in a number of ways, and here are a few examples:

    The 2 large interlocking triangles may be understood as one triangle hinting to the Scriptural triad of Torah (Five Books of Moses), Neviim (Prophets), and Kesuvim (Writings), and the second triangle as hinting to three general levels of Scriptural interpretation, Peshat (the surface, plain or literal interpretation), Remez and Derash (the hinted or allegoric interpretations and homiletic expositions including moral and philosophical explanations and derivations of the laws [these are usually divided into two levels but they may also be considered as one]), and Sod (the secret or esoteric/mystical interpretation).

    Alternatively, one triangle may correspond to Mikra (Scripture), Mishna and Talmud, as in the dictum (Kiddushin 30a; Avodah Zorah 19b), “one should always divide one’s years (of study) into three (and devote) one third of them to Scripture, one third to Mishnah, and one third to Talmud. But does a man know the tenure of his life? What is meant is that he should apply this practice to every day of his life.” The other triangle may correspond to the necessary aspects of having proper Emuna (belief), Hashkafa (outlook) and Halacha (observance).

    Additionally the 2 larger triangles may correspond to the Jerusalem Talmud and the Babylonian Talmud, with the 6 smaller triangular points corresponding to the 6 orders of Mishna, which deal with the physical laws of the Torah, i.e., Zeraim (Seeds, about agriculture and the land of Israel and everyday ritual commandments), Moed (Appointed Time, about Sabbath and holiday laws), Nashim (Women, about relations between man and wife), Nezikin (Damages, about interpersonal relations, property, and judicial procedure), Kodashim (Sacred Things, about the service in the Temple and the sacrifices,) and Tohorot (Pure Things, about ritual purity and impurity). The more spiritual point in the center of the star may correspond to the more spiritual sayings of the Agada and Medrash.

    Another way to view this is to see one triangle as corresponding to Torah, Avodah and Gemilas Chassodim, as in the dictum (Avos 1:2), “The world depends on three things, on Torah study, on Service (of G-d), and on Deeds of Kindness,” and the other triangle as corresponding Din, Emes and Sholom, as in the dictum (Mishna Avos 1:18), “The world endure on three things, Justice, Truth, and Peace as it is said: ‘Truth and the verdict of peace shall you adjudicate in your gates’ (Zecharya 8:16).”

    ———-

    The Magen David star may also be viewed as corresponding to the Shma in a number of ways. For example, one large triangle may hint to the three paragraphs of Shma, with the other large triangle hinting to either the 3 physical Mitzvos in which the Shma is written on parchment, i.e., the Tefillin of the arm, Tefillin of the head, and the Mezuzah, or hinting to the 3 physical Mitzvos connected with our prayers, the Tefillin of the arm, Tefillin of the head, and the Tzitzis. Incidentally there is a correspondence between Mezuzah and Tzitzis, one being a reminder of Hashem on the edges of one’s rooms, houses or gates, while the other being a reminder of Hashem on the edges of our garments.

    The 6 points of the Magen David may correspond to the 6 words of the verse of Shma Yisroel, or to the 6 words of the silent verse Borch Shem, and the 12 lines on the perimeter of the star may correspond to the 12 words of these two verses of the Shma together.

    While focused on the Magen David this is a suitable time to point out an important allusion to David in the Shma, in the final letters of the last words of the silent verse ברוך שם כבוד’ מלכותו’ לעולם ועד’, Boruch Shem KevoD’ MalchusO’ L’olaom VoeD’ (“Blessed is the Name of His glorious Kingdom for all eternity”), which these three letters spell the name דוד, Dovid. It is entirely proper to have this hint in mind when reciting the Shma, and to pray that the glory of Hashem’s kingdom should be revealed through the scion of His servant Dovid, Moshiach ben Dovid. The remaining final letters of this verse, Chuf, Mem, Mem, sum to 20 + 40 + 40 = 100, which is he complete number 10 x 10, hinting to the thought that we should merit to this revelation of Hashem’s Kingdom through Moshiach ben Dovid in completeness.

    ———-

    When viewed from the broadest perspective the Magen David may be seen to be composed of 2 larger interlocking triangles and 6 smaller triangle points, and making 8 levels, plus 1 hexagonal space in the center, which is a 9th level, and in addition there is also the expanse of space on the outside of the star, which may represent another level, the 10th level.

    Understood in this way one is able to see that the Magen David may correspond to the 10 Sefiros, with the large outside space encompassing everything else corresponding to the Sefirah of Kesser, the highest level that encompasses all, the 2 greater triangles corresponding to the greater Sefiros of Chochma and Bna, the 6 smaller triangles corresponding to the 6 lesser Sefiros of Chesed, Gevurah, Tiferes, Netzach, Hod, and Yesod, and the 1 space in the center corresponding to the Sefirah of Malchus.

    ———-

    Meanwhile I’ve come another one of Ezra’s posts discussing the Magen David – his post “The All,” from almost exactly 4 years ago, http://kabbalahsecrets.com/?p=3108 – which is relevant to this discussion, and especially since there too his words about the Magen David come in connection with explaining the words Kol Tuv, “everything good,” from a verse in the Torah (Devorim 6:11) that comes immediately after the verses of the first paragraph of Shma. This really should be read in context of that whole post, but meanwhile here are a few excerpts:

    “Now the word tov (טוב), first used when G-d pronounced in Bereshit (Genesis), “it was good (ki tov)” has he numerical value of 17. It also has an ordinal value of 17 as well, thus it has a complete value of 34 and when we add the kolel for the 3 letters, we get 37, which it turns out is the inner dimension of Chochma (ChCMH), in other words the ordinal value of Chochma. Every sefirot is both light and vessel and has an inner and outer dimension to it and so does every word. In the case of Chochma (ChCMH), its numerical value, 73, forms the exact number of units in the 4th natural star number. Star numbers form the shape of the Magen David, also known as the Star or Shield of David. And so does the number 37 (the 3rd Star number), but 37 is also the number of units in the central hexagon of that 73-unit Magen David, so they are integrally related, one the inner dimension of the other. Please do not think this is coincidental, as the numerical value of Israel, 541, gives us the 10th Star, and furthermore, as it turns out 37 x 73 is also the same value as all the integers from 1 to 73. This aside only serves to show the depth and the everlasting power to which the simple phrase, Kol Tuv connects…

    “…The initials (כט) in Kol Tuv (CL TtVB) have an ordinal value of 20 while the corresponding value of the next 2 letters (CL TtVB) is 18, thus forming 20:18 and those 2nd set of letters (LamedVav) represents the LV (לו) of numerical value 36, as in the 36 tzaddikim (righteous souls) that sustain our world and guide us from generation to generation (L‘dor V‘dor) toward Moshiach. Just to note, the gematria of (L‘dor V‘dor) is 444 and there exactly are 13 generations of 444 years in 5778 and 13, the numerical value of the Hebrew word for love, is the 2nd Star number, as discussed above. It all begins with love. The final letter in this sequence is Bet (ב) of numerical value 2, which once again shows us that the 2 calendars are converging and that the two 2018’s are one. In the Hebrew calendar year 2018 G-d made His Covenant of Halves with Abraham, promising him everything, and in 2018 CE in the Western Calendar (5778 HC) it is prophesied to be fulfilled, 70 years after the birth of the Israeli nation in 1948 CE, fulfilling yet another part of the prophecy and coinciding with the birth of Abraham in 1948 HC…

    “…This is just one small thing we can do to win the war against negativity, overcome our nature, help bring the final redemption, but it is something. And it’s something real. And it is a start for many. Doing nothing is not an option. So let’s all wish each other l’chaim with the expression kol tuv (כל טוב) and this time let’s mean it, let’s tap into the energy of the endless and channel it with love in our hearts to our family, friends, and especially to our neighbors. Let’s bring Moshiach…”

    L’chayim V’Kol Tuv!

    (To be continued.)

  8. In this week’s Sedra, Ki Tzitzei, verse (Devarim 22:12) mentions the Mitzvah of Tzitzis, “Make for yourself Gedilim, fringes, upon the four corners of the garment with which you cover yourself.” The word גדלים, Gedilim, translated as “fringes,” “bound tassels,” or “twisted chords,” refers to the Tzitzis.

    R’ Kaplan in The Living Torah explains on the verse: “bound tassels. Gedilim in Hebrew (cf. I Kings 7:17); Targum on Exodus 28:22). See Numbers 15:38. The ritual tzitzith-tassels are made by doubling over four threads so that eight appear to be coming from each corner. One of these threads is longer than the rest, and this is wound around the rest. This section, around which a thread is wound, constitutes one third of the length of the tassel, and is called the gedil (Menachoth 39a; Rashi ibid. 39b, s.v. U’Pothli’hu; Rashi on Deuteronomy 32:5). Or, “doubled tassels” (Sifri; Menachoth 39b).”

    The Gedilim are thus another name for Tzitzis, and more specifically they refer to the knotted and wound top section of the Tzitzis, which is the 1/3 of the total Tzitzis length, the other 2/3 being the length of the 8 loose strings that hang from there. This division of the Tzitzis into thirds resonates with our discussion of other triplet and triad patterns hinted in the triangles of the Magen David.

    Further emphasizing this, the word Gedilim starts with a letter Gimel, gematria 3, and ends with a letter Lamed, gematria 30, or small gematria 3, and thus this word also hints to overlapping or intertwined threes, in other words, a Magen David.

    The singular of the word Gedilim is גדל, Gedil, fringe, and this is very similar to the word גדל, Gadel, grow, which resonates with the word Tzitz, meaning bloom or blossom. It is also similar to the word גדל, Gadol, big or great, and this may be why the topmost part of the Tzitzis is called the Gedil, since due to the knots and the windings it is thicker and more complex and developed than just the plain strings.

    It is possible to say that the use of the name Gedilim for Tzitzis hints that wearing Tzitzis elevates the person and makes him grow and develop and become great, since thereby he is attached to Hashem, the source of all life, of all growth and of all greatness.

    The Torah’s use of the word Gedilim as an alternative word for Tzitzis also emphasizes the point that was made before, that the Tzitzis are comparable to the Israeli flag, since the letters of word גדל, Gedil, are the same, with only a slight rearrangement, as the letters of the word דגל, Degel, flag, and it has the same gematria 3 + 4 + 30 = 37.

    Further, since the number 37 consists of a larger number 30 and a smaller number 7, therefore this too hints to a Magen David, since the number 30 hints to the three higher Sephiros, Kesser, Chochma and Bina, corresponding to the background white space and the two large overlapping triangles, and the number 7 hints to the seven lower Sefiros, Chesed through Malchus, the 6 points of the star and the 1 hexagonal space in the center.

    (To be continued. Good Shabbos!)

  9. Last week’s Sedra, כי תצא, Ki Satzei [here I’ve corrected the misspelled transliteration at the beginning of the last comment], “When you go out,” begins with a command about waging war (Devorim 21:10), “When you go out to war against your enemy, and Hashem your G-d gives him into your hand, and you capture his captive…”

    After stating that we will be victorious in the battle, the account focuses on how a soldier of Israel’s army may be tempted by a female captive, and the Torah specifies the procedures for the desired woman to be converted and married, in a manner preserving her personal rights and human dignity. Our sages explain the “The Torah addresses the evil inclination,” thus controlling the soldier’s moral behavior and ensuring the most ethical outcome possible.

    The Sedra also ends with a command about war (25:17-19), “Remember what Amolek did to you on the way as you went out of Egypt, they encountered you on the way when you were tired and exhausted, and they cut off those lagging to your rear, and they did not fear G-d… You shall wipe out the memory of Amolek from under heaven, do not forget.”

    According to our sages the Israelites that Amolek attacked were not on the highest level, but rather were those who were “expelled by the pillar of cloud” that hovered over and protected the rest of people, and this means that the stragglers who were attacked by Amolek were on a lower spiritual level and affected by the evil inclination.

    Similarly, where the attack of Amolek is first described, on the verse (Exodus 17:8-15), “Amolek came and fought with Israel in Refidim,” our sages explain that the name Refidim hints that in that place “Rofu yedeihem min haTorah,” “they slackened their hands from the Torah,” and this too implies that the attacked Israelites were affected by their evil inclination, and it is this weakness that led to Amolek’s attack.

    It is possible to say that these passages in Ki Satzei hint to the Mitzvah of Talis and Tzitzis. This is because, as explained before, the camp of Israel in the desert was rectangular shaped, like the rectangular four cornered Talis garment, and the idea of “when you go out to war,” when soldiers march out of the camp, generally marching in straight lines, corresponds to the idea of the strings of the Tzitzis that extend straight out from the garment. Similarly those attacked by Amolek were “those lagging to your rear,” i.e., those who trailed behind the bulk of the people, like the strings of Tzitzis that trail from the Talis.

    This comparison is even more evident since the strings of the Tzitzis often are subject to getting soiled, stepped on and even torn off, due to the way they are worn on the outside, and this corresponds to what potentially happens to both soldiers and stragglers who are subject to unkind elements and forces outside the safety of the camp, where they too are in danger of getting soiled, harmed, and even cut off.

    In addition, the Torah also stresses that Tzitzis are a protection against the evil inclination, as directly stated in the verse from the third paragraph of Shma (Numbers 15:38), “And it shall be for you Tzitzis, so that you see it and remember all the commandments of Hashem and perform them, and not turn aside after your heart and after your eyes [the evil inclination] after which you stray.” This is also explained at length by our sages o.b.m.

    This also explains the connection of the commandment of Tzitzis being written in the Torah at the very end of Sedra Shlach, which begins by relating the debacle of the spies sent by Moshe to scout out the land of Canaan, who returned with a negative report saying the Israelites could not be successful in a war against the very powerful inhabitants of the land. This again is another instance of individuals going out of the camp of Israel, and how the evil inclination prevailed over them leading to disaster.

    Toward the end of Sedra Shlach there are also a number of commandments pertaining to offerings to Hashem when the people would eventually enter the land, including communal and individual sin offerings that must be brought for even inadvertent sins of idolatry, which ultimately also these severe sins stem from failures to prevail over the evil inclination.

    Then, immediately before the passage with the commandment of Tzitzis, the Torah relates the account of a man who violated the laws of Shabbos, by going outside the camp to gather or cut sticks, and this is another instance of someone going outside the camp and having difficulty or failing to overcome the evil inclination.

    These passages and their order and context provide an indication that the Mitzvah of Tzitzis was commanded to a significant degree in order to counter the evil inclination, to discourage sin and any aspect of idolatry, and to help us maintain Hashem’s protection even under difficult conditions when outside the camp.

    Similarly regarding the commandment of Tzitzis in Ki Satzei, “Make for yourself Gedilim, fringes, upon the four corners of the garment with which you cover yourself,” this verse is right in the middle of a number of commandments that in various ways are designed to curtail the desires of the evil inclination, and again it is evident from the order and context of the passages that the commandment of Gedilim-Tzitzis has a beneficial effect to strengthen us and protect us from the evil inclination and the mistakes that it tries to entice us to commit.

    According to this explanation it also makes sense to say that in the merit of our fulfillment of the Mitzvah of Tzitzis we are able to draw beneficial blessings not just for ourselves, but rather, since we overlap and are intertwined with one another as one people, therefore our observance certainly also has a beneficial influence for all our brethren. Even for the forces of the Israeli army who go out to war, and for our fellow brethren who for whatever reason find themselves either physically or spiritually outside the camp of Israel, our keeping of the Mitzvos, and in particular the Mitzva of Tzitzis, helps ensure that the contrivances of the evil inclination are contained and thwarted, and that in all situations, even difficult ones, we will always stay connected to our people and to Hashem.

    (To be continued.)

  10. The previous comment explained that in addition to all its other holy aspects, the Mitzvah of Tzitzis was given to protect us from the evil inclination. This is timely for us to have in mind as we prepare for Rosh Hashanah, which marks the anniversary of first sin caused by the evil inclination, eating the forbidden fruit of the Tree of Good and Evil.

    The Torah says and that after Hashem pronounced judgment for the sin, “Hashem Elokim made for Adam and his wife garments of skin and he clothed them” (Genesis 3:21). Rosh Hashanah thus commemorates all the momentous events of the 6th day of creation, the creation of man, the sin, the judgment, and the clothing of man in special garments given directly by G-d.

    Our sages explain that the Torah stresses Hashem’s kindness, for right from the beginning Hashem performed an act of kindness by making special garments and clothing Adam and Eve, and likewise the end of the Torah stresses that Hashem performed an act of kindness by burying Moshe Rabbeinu, and we are obliged to learn from Hashem’s ways to emulate what He does, just as He clothed the naked so too should we, and similarly we should imitate His other acts of kindness and mercy.

    Here I’d like to focus on the kindness of the special Kosnos Or, “garments of skin,” that Hashem made for man, concerning which our sages offered various different literal, metaphorical, and esoteric interpretations, ranging from the coarsely physical to the sublimely spiritual, including the following and more:

    According to some sages the garments were nothing unusual, just plain leather animal skins from an ox or other regular animal. According to some the animal from which the skins were taken was similar in size and shape to man. According to some the garments were made from the skin shed by the snake.

    Another opinion states that Kosnos Or means “garments from what comes out of skin,” i.e., garments from fur and hair that grow out of the skin, meaning the fur of animals like goats, sheep, or rabbits. Another opinion states Kosnos Or means “garments that benefit the skin” or “garments that that cleave to the skin,” meaning the garments were made of linen or cotton or similar materials.

    On a higher level sages say that Hashem clothing Adam and Eve in garments of skin means that they were given physical bodies, since before the sin they were purely spiritual beings. Another opinion is that “garments of skin” is a euphemism for the foreskin and hymen. Another opinion is that they were given hard and shiny and tight fitting garments similar to fingernails.

    Another opinion is that the garments were from very fancy animal skins that were decorated with beautiful drawings of birds and other creatures, giving power to the wearer to be able to control the wild animals, and generations later these garments eventually came into Esav’s possession, and these were the “coveted” garments of Esav with the “smell of Gan Eden” that Yakov put on when he received Yitzchok’s blessing. Another interpretation is that the word “skin” in this verse has a meaning of “honorable” and “respectable,” with the intention of indicating that these were valuable and respectable garments that it was an honor to give and an honor to wear.

    On higher levels sages say that these were garments of “light,” reading the word עור, Or, skin, as though it would have been spelled like the word אור, Or, light, with an initial letter Alef instead of with an Ayin, with the same pronounciation. Another opinion says that these garments were “Shabbos garments,” since immediately thereafter the first Shabbos of creation started, and this imparts a hint for us to likewise wear special garments in honor of the Shabbos. Some say that these garments were made from the skin of the great Leviathan, which was slaughtered to be feasted on at the great banquet for the righteous in the world to come, which Shabbos is a taste of the world to come.

    Another interpretation teaches that the garments of skin were made from the skin of the uniquely beautifully colored Tachash animal, the same animal skin that was later used as the tent covering of the Mishkan Tabernacle, and it was for use of their skin for the Mishkon that the Tachash was created, and afterward it became extinct. Another opinion teaches that these garments were Bigdei Kohan Gadol, the set of holy garments worn by the High Priest in the Mishkon and Mikdash, and a Midrash says that there is a hint to this since this verse has 8 words, hinting to the 8 holy garments of the Kohan Gadol.

    ———-

    Regarding the Mishkon and the holy priestly garments that are hinted in Hashem’s gift of “Kosnos Or” to man in Gan Eden, it was already stated above in previous comments that there is a clear correspondence between both the Mishkon and the priestly garments to the Talis and Tzitzis. Automatically then, the garment of Talis and Tzitzis, and also Tefillin, which are Hashem’s special ornamental garments made of skin and parchment that He ordained for us to wear, are also clearly hinted to in the “Kosnos Or” that Hashem gave to Adam and Eve on the very first Rosh Hashanah.

    The above mentioned Midrash noted that there are 8 words of this verse, and the number 8 also clearly hints to the 8 strings of Tzitzis, and also to Tefillin, which are two rectangular four sided leather boxes, one on the arm and one on the head, with each box containing four paragraphs of the Torah written on parchment, thus outwardly and inwardly being represented by the number 2 x 4 = 8. It is also possible to find hints to all of these holy themes that we are discussing from the design that appears in the Torah since this verse (Genesis 3:21) is the 77th verse in the Torah, and in that there are 37 letters in this verse, and these numbers too are significant and have previously been discussed above.

    In the context of the Scriptural narrative, these special garments were given by Hashem right after man’s sin and right before his expulsion from Gan Eden, and it is evident that Hashem’s intention in giving them to Adam and Eve was to thereby help them to control their evil inclinations, to elevate them to repent out of love and to sin no more, and eventually to have the ability and power to repair the damage they had caused through their sin and to be able to return and reenter Gan Eden at the appropriate time.

    Similarly for the congregation of Israel, the garments Hashem commanded for us to wear are specifically the Tallis with Tzitzis, and similarly the Tefillin worn as a sign on our arm and on our head, and they are designed to protect us from the evil inclination and to earn for us merit and bring us back to everlasting life in Gan Eden. We were given these Mitzvos directly from Hashem, our G-d, the Creator and King of the universe, and there are unimaginable benefits in store for those who diligently put on these precious articles of apparel that are emblematic of our connection to our people and our connection to Hashem. These matters could be elaborated on at much more length however present time constraints necessitate brevity.

    At any rate we have seen that the Talis and Tzitzis are hinted in Hashems’ kindness at the beginning of the Torah in the giving of garments to Adam and Eve, and likewise the Talis and Tzitzis are hinted the end of the Torah which discusses Hashem’s kindness in burying Moshe Rabbeinu, since as was already discussed in a previous comment the long standing tradition for Jewish burial is that the body is buried wrapped in a Talis with Tzitzis.

    Another great kindness of Hashem evident in the beginning of the Torah is His arranging for the union of man and woman in holy marriage. The Torah describes how Hashem did this kindness for the first man and woman, Adam and Eve, and similarly for all their progeny in all generations, and it is also the long standing Jewish tradition for the bride and groom to stand under the canopy of a Talis with Tzitzis when they unite as one at the wedding ceremony, at the very beginning of their new life together.

    As we approach the Judgment Day of Rosh Hashonah, the beginning day on which man was created, sinned, and was judged, and the day that Hashem clothed man in the special “Kosnos Or,” it certainly would be proper for all of us to make good resolutions, to “choose life,” to increase our study of Torah and our observance of Mitzvos, and especially the Mitzvos of Tzitzis and Tefilllin, reciting Shma and praying to G-d, and especially Mitzvah of following the kind and merciful ways of Hashem.

    This will surely help improve the world, in numerous personal and communal ways, and further ensure that we receive favorable judgments from Hashem, including being inscribed and sealed in the Book of Life, and for the gathering in of our people with love from the four corners of the earth to our holy land of Israel, with the coming of our righteous Moshaich very soon indeed.

    Best wishes for a Shona Tova U’Mesukah U’Geulah to all!

    (To be continued.)

    Note: The planed completion of this essay will focus on the Mishkon and the priestly garments, which are also mentioned at the end of Sedrah Bamidbar, after the census of Israel and the arrangement of the camp, where the Torah discusses the way the Mishkon and the priestly garments were assembled and transported by the Leviim on the journeys in the desert, and IYH more correspondences to the Mitzvos of reciting the Shma and praying to Hashem and wearing a Talis with Tzitzis and Tefillin will be explained.