You are here: Kabbalah Library Home / Other Authors / An Essay about Letters / PART I / The Circle Of Letters

The Circle Of Letters

31) To return to what we have begun in answering the question as to why the letters returned to GOD in reverse order instead of the way they came out from the mouth of the source.

At first, it is necessary to be aware that, when the א "Aleph" came out, it did not assume a vertical position, meaning, to stand upright from the source downward but, instead, it assumed a slanting position to the right side of the place of exit. This is why the position of the curvature of the end of the middle line of the א "Aleph" indicates a leaning to the right. Therefore, the next letter to the א "Aleph"which is the ב "Beth", that came out after the א "Aleph", also remained somewhat tilted to the right below the א "Aleph". This slant caused all the letters to become arranged in an array of a circle. The drawing below will prove the point conveyed here (see chapter 36).

It is to be noted that the bottom of the upper part of the circle is open as though it were a mouth where the letters were issued from. Consequently, all the letters were arranged in a perfect circle; so that all of them could face each other and also due to the form of the circle, the "Shine" from above illuminated them equally. Hence, at the end of the circle of the letters, we can all(?) the last letter of the alphabet, the ת "Tav", facing the א "Aleph".

In this fashion, the ת "Tav" was the closest to the left Side of the source, in order to re- enter the place whence it was issued. Following the ת "Tav", the letter ש "Shin" entered the source; then, the ר "Reish" after the ש "Shin" and thus down the line of all the letters, until it reached the first letter, the א "Aleph".


32) However, one may ask, if the א "Aleph" also stood on the right side near the exit, why was it, then, that the א "Aleph" did not enter first rather than the letter ת "Tav"? The answer is very simple. The letter א "Aleph" is in a class by itself, in that it is above the other letters of the Hebrew alphabet, far surpassing them all in merit and quality of tenuity. The א "Aleph" therefore, knew beforehand that she was not eligible to serve as the instrument of creation.


33) The ב "Beth" therefore, standing behind the א "Aleph", found that her approach to the palace of GOD was blocked by the א "Aleph". She therefore could not ask the א "Aleph" to move aside in order to enter and appear before GOD. The ת "Tav", of necessity, had the first opportunity and privilege to appear before GOD with her plea that she be the one to serve as the instrument of creation. It can be rightly stated that the english word "Aloof", which means "Standing Above Others", is akin to the word אלף "Aleph". This intimates that the english word "Aloof" must be derived from the Hebrew letter of word אלף "Aleph", which also stands aloof over all the other letters of the Hebrew alphabet.


34) In addition, it must be said, that the letter א "Aleph", which was the first to be issued, is more on a par with the source itself than are the rest of the letters.

This is why the א "Aleph" is named after the two upper Sephiroth "Chochmoh" and "Binah". We find that the sages of both the Talmud and the Zohar attributed great merit to the letter א "Aleph". The is evidenced by the following: א "Aleph", "Chochsoh"; א "Aleph", "Binah", the same meaning as the Hebrew word "Aloof"; that is to say: The א "Aleph" symbolizes the Sephiroth "Chochmoh" and "Binah". The א "Aleph", therefore, did not attempt to enter the place of GOD; even after her turn had come to appear before GOD.

It is for this reason that the א "Aleph" bears the same name "Chochmoh" and "Binah" as though it wer the origin of all the letters.


35) The Twenty-seven letters are divided into three pillars, the right pillare having thirteen letters, beginning with the first letter א "Aleph"; whereas the left pillar, ending with the ת "Tav", has the other thirteen letters. The middle pillar, which unites the right and the left pillars is the מ "Mem".

Thus, the first letter, the א "Aleph", is the head of the right pillar, the מ "Mem" represents the middle pillar, and the last letter, the ת "Tav", is the head of the left pillar. Together they make up the Hebrew word אמת "Emet", "Truth", which has a numerical value of "nine". The numerical value of the א "Aleph" is "One"; whereas The numerical value of the מ "Mem" is "forty". When reduced, it amounts to "four". The numerical value of the ת "Tav" is "four hundred", and, when reduced to its minimum, it is also "four".


36) We learn from the word אמת "Emet" (Truth), that the order of the letters, upon appearing in their reversed order before GOD, was also arranged in groups of three pillars. Omitting the letter "Aleph", the Hebrew alphabet has seven groups of three letters each group. Thus, The numerical value of each group, counting from the reversed order, when reduced, is equivalent to that of the word אמת "Emet" (Truth), whose numerical value is also nine.

This is another reason why it was that the letter ת "Tav" was the first one of the letters of the Hebrew alphabet to appear before GOD, asking of Him that he accept her for creation.

The numerical value of the first three letters is as follows: that of the letter ת "Tav", when reduced, is "four", the numerical value of the ש "Shin" is "three"; whereas that of the ר "Reish" is "two". Together, they amount to "nine". Thus, each three letters of the seven groups that follow the ר "Reish" down the line amount to the numerical value nine, equivalent to that of the reduced numerical value of the Hebrew word אמת "Emet" (Truth).

This serves to further point out the uniqueness and the holiness of the Hebrew alphabet, in that it is sealed with the holy signature of GOD. Concerning the word אמת "Emet" (Truth), the sages of the Talmud and of the Zohar discover that אמת "EmeT", is the "Seal of GOD ".

א ת
ב ש
ג ר
ד ק
ה ץ
ו תפארת ף

ח מלכות ע
ט ס
כ ן
ך נ
ל ם

37) The Hebrew alphabet consists of twenty-two letters. However, in the chart, there are twenty-seven. This is because the five final letters ם, ן, ץ, ף, ך "M.N.Z.F.CH" are included.

It should be noted that the Hebrew alphabet begins with the letter א "Aleph" and ends with the letter ת "Tav". The center of the alphabet is the letter מ "Mem", the combination of which makes up the word אמת "Emes" (Truth).

This throws light upon the spiritual essence of the Hebrew alphabet, which springs from the highest realms of "The Sephiroth" and is, not only permeated with "The Glory of GOD": but is also "Sealed" with the Impression of His "Signature", which is אמת "Emet" (Truth).


38) The Letters of the Hebrew alphabet originate in the Sephirah "Binah". These letters serve as vessels to the Ten Sephiroth by means of which the light spreads within them. From these letters a and their variant combinations all concepts and ideas are revealed. The vowels, however, are "The Inner lights" dwelling in the vessels (Tik. Zohar, P.175).

Back to top
Site location tree