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CHAI is from the Hebrew meaning LIFE (Kolatch, Alfred J. 1984. The Complete Dictionary of English and Hebrew First Names. Middle Village: Jonathan David. 47).
Hebrew Bible source - ‘And Adam named his wife Eve, because she was the mother of all living [chai]’ (Genesis 3:20).
The Hebrew Letters featured in this painting are Chet Yud. Taken together they spell CHAI.
Each of the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet has a special meaning and a story to tell. Here a few brief ones about the letters on this painting.
CHET is the 8th letter of the alphabet and has a numerical value of 8, is pronounced like the CH in BaCH. Kushner's description is the best that I have found of what is necessary to create the sound of Chet . It is the "top of your throat and the bottom of your throat fighting against one another” (Kushner, Lawrence. 1990. The Book of Letters: Sefer Otiyot.Woodstock: Jewish Lights Publishing. 39).
Usually the Chet is composed of 2 Zayins. But the 16th century kabbalist master, Luria, stated that the Chet consists of a Vav on the right and a Zayin on the left. Each Hebrew letter has a numerical value. GEMATRIA is the numerical manipulation of the values of the letter to explain the meaning of a word or phrase. The combined value of the Vav (6) and Zayin (7) is 13 which is the value of the word ECHAD - Aleph Chet Dalet (4) = 13. ECHAD means ONE. It is also the highest prime denominator of the name of God - Yud (10) Hey(5) Vav (6) Hey (5) = 26 =13 = ONE.
Talmud teaches that if one learns UNDERSTANDING and performs acts of LOVINGKINDNESS for the poor, then God will look upon the person with Chen spelled Chet Nun with FAVOR, GRACE (Shabbat 104a).
[The writing of the letters] must be kethibah tammah [perfect writing]; thus one must not write the… the Chet as a Hey or the Hey as a Chet (Shabbat 103b).
Zayyin Heth Heth Yod Lamed: [this sequence teaches,] and if thou doest thus, the Holy One, blessed be He, will sustain[ Zan] thee, be gracious Hen] unto thee, show goodness[Metiv] to thee, give thee a heritage Yerushah], and bind a crown Keter] on thee in the world to come (Shabbat 104a).
Mishneh Torah is a major halachic (law) work written by Maimonides. In it Rambam explains that there are 10 levels of ANGELS. The Hayyot [Chet Yud Vav Tav] HA KODESH are above all the others. The word Hayyot begins with a Chet and is related to the word Chai [Chet Yud] - LIFE (Mishneh Torah 1981. Hilchot Yesodei HaTorah 2:7. Tr. Moses Hyamson. New York: Feldheim. 36a).
In meditation the letter Chet frequently presents itself as a door way. It is safe to go through this particular doorway because it is constructed of a Vav and a Zayin, which, by virtue of their numerical value, allude to the name of God as explained above. It is also possible to ask for an ANGEL to guide one when passing through Chet.
YUD is the 10th letter of the Hebrew alphabet, has a numerical value of 10, means HAND, makes a sound like the Y in Year and is a simple point. It is the smallest letter in the alphabet and yet is frequently associated with the very large concept of EMANATION, the highest level in the Four World paradigm of Kabbalah.
Menachot 29b teaches that the WORLD TO COME was created by use of the letter Yud.
Yud has the important job of being the first letter of the Tetragrammaton - Yud Hey Vav Hey. Zohar states that, in this context, the Yud represents the head of all creatures (Zohar. 1984 Tr. Harry Sperling et al. New York: Soncino. 3:130).
[The writing of the letters] must be ‘kethibah tammah’ [perfect writing]; thus one must not write the… Vav as a Yud or the Yud as a Vav (Shabbat 103b).
[Zayyin Chet Tet Yud Kaf Lamed]: [this sequence teaches,] and if thou doest thus, the Holy One, blessed be He, will sustain[ Zan] thee, be gracious [Hen] unto thee, show goodness [Metiv] to thee, give thee a heritage [Yerushah], and bind a crown [Keter] on thee in the world to come (Shabbat 104a).
When meditating with the YUD, the YUD presents itself right in front of me. It then enters into me right away filling me with a most peaceful feeling. I like to sit with this feeling as long as I can. When I think of the YUD I thing of sitting still.
If you enter meditation and the Yud comes to you, ask Yud a question and wait for the answer. Amazing results. The
Yud is also capable of taking you anywhere in the Universe. Give it a try and let me know the results.
February 9th, 2019
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