JORDAN is an Anglicized version of the Hebrew name YARDEN, meaning TO FLOW DOWN, DESCEND, hence the connotation DESCENDANT (Kolatch, Alfred J. 1984. The Complete Dictionary of English and Hebrew First Names. Middle Village: Jonathan David. 126, 246).
Variant spelling - YARDEN, JORDANN, JOURDAN, JOURDAIN
Hebrew Bible source - The Jordan is the longest river in Israel and makes up, in part, her eastern border (Numbers 34:12).
The Hebrew Letters featured in this piece are Yud Resh Dalet Nun sophit. Taken together, and reading from right to left, they spell JORDAN.
Kabbalistic fact - Jordan is a very intense name in the Merkavah System of meditation. In this two person meditation developed by the rabbis after the fall of the 2nd Temple, one person descends [yared] (Baatai Midrashot) and the other one is the guide. The person who engages in this discipline may gain insight into oneself and others, dissolution of the ego, a certainty of direction, but does so at the risk of disorientation, insanity, and death (Rabbi Mitchell Chefitz, author of The Seventh Telling, The Thiry-third Hour, The Curse of Blessings). ; (Wertheimer, Shlomo. Ed. 1968. Baatai Midrashot. Vol.1. Jerusalem: Ktav Vasefer. Ch. 1. samech zayin).
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.
YUD is the 10th letter of the Hebrew alphabet, has a numerical value of 10, and means HAND. Yud makes a sound like the Y in Year. Yud 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.
[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).
Zayin Heth Teth Yod Kaf Lamed: [This sequence of letters teaches us that], if thou doest thus, the Holy One, blessed be He [haKadosh], 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 ).
The letters of the word for husband are Aleph, Yud and Shin, and for wife Aleph Shin and Hey. The Yud and Hey form the Divine Name; but if omitted, only Aleph and Shin are left which form the word esh, meaning fire (Sotah 17a).
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 1984. 3:130).
In the Sephrotic tree the Yud symbolizes WISDOM - the stage of concealment which precedes its development into a state of expansion in UNDERSTANDING. It is then contained and represented in the letter Hey (Zalman, Shneur. 1981. "Igeret Hateshuvah." Likkutei Amarim - Tanya. 359).
Menachot 29b teaches that the WORLD TO COME was created by use of the letter Yud Sefer Yetzirah divides the Hebrew Letters into 3 categories: 3 mothers - Aleph Mem Shin, 7 doubles - Beit Gimel Dalet Caf Pey Resh Tav and 12 elementals - Hey Vav Zayin Chet Tet Yud Lamed Nun Samech Ayin Tsade Kuf.
According to Sefer Yetzirah, God created the world by means of these letters. Yud is one of the Elementals. Twelve Elementals - their foundation is [that] He engraved them, and transformed them, and with them He formed 12 constellations in the Universe, 12 months in the Year and 12 directions in the soul, male and female. And God made the letter Yud, King over action and He bound a crown to it and combined one with another and with them He formed Virgo in the Universe, Elul in the Year and the left hand in the Soul male and female (Kaplan, Aryeh. 1990. Sefer Yetzirah. The Book of Creation York Beach: Samuel Weiser. 5, 95, 209, 159, 216).
RESH is the 20th letter of the Hebrew alphabet and has a numerical value of 200. RESH makes a sound like the R in Radiant. Resh means BEGINNING or HEAD. When one spells out the letter Resh in Hebrew, it is Resh Yud Shin. Yud and Shin spell YESH - THERE IS. The letter Resh means BEGINNING. So it is possible to say that the Resh literally means THERE IS A BEGINNING.
[The writing of the letters] must be kethibah tammah [perfect writing]; thus one must not write the
the Dalet as a Resh or the Resh as a Dalet (Shabbat 103a).
Kuf [stands for] Kadosh [holy]; Resh [for] Rasha [wicked]: why is the face of the Kuf averted from, the Resh? The Holy One, blessed be He, said: I cannot look at the wicked. And why is the crown of the Kuf turned toward the Resh? The Holy One, blessed be He, saith: If he repents, I will bind a crown on him like Mine. And why is the foot of the Kuf suspended? [To show] that if he repents, he can enter and be brought in [to God's favour] through this [opening]. (Shabbat 104a).
A Tanna taught: If one corrects one letter, he is culpable. Now, seeing that if one writes one letter he is not culpable. if he [merely] corrects one letter he is culpable?30 - Said R. SheshetHeth and makes two Zayyin thereof. Raba said: E.g.. he removes the projection of a Daleth and makes a Resh thereof.31
(30) Surely not.
(31) In a Scroll of one of the Biblical books. This constitutes a complete labour, because one may not permit a Scroll of Scripture to remain with an error
I am a scribe, and he said to me, Be meticulous in your work, for your occupation is a sacred one [work of heaven]; should you perchance omit or add one single letter, you would thereby destroy all the universe.(18) There is no need [for me to assure you] that I would make no mistakes in respect of words that are plene or defective, since I am familiar [with the subject], but [I have even taken precautions] against the possibility of a fly's perching on the crownlet of a Dalet and, by blotting it out, turn it into a Resh, for I have a certain ingredient, called vitriol, which I put into the ink. (18) By omitting e.g. , the Aleph in , Aleph Mem Tav (truth), the word would be abbreviated to Mem Tav (dead) Eruvin. 13a).
Sefer Yetzirah divides the Hebrew Letters into 3 categories: 3 mothers Aleph Mem Shin , 7 doubles Beit Gimel Dalet Kuf Pey Resh Tav and 12 elementals Hey Vav Zayin Chet Tet Yud Lamed Nun Samech Ayin Tsade Kuf.
According to Sefer Yetzirah, God created the world by means of these letters. The Resh is one of the doubles. He made the letter Resh king over Peace and He bound a crown to it and combined one with another and with them He formed
(Kaplan, Aryeh. 1990. Sefer Yetzirah. The Book of Creation York Beach: Samuel Weiser. 5, 95, 145, 147, 159, 176).
DALET is the 4th letter of the alphabet, has a numerical value of 4, means DOOR and makes a sound like the D in Delight. The Dalet has the shape of an open door.
The letter Dalet consists of two lines, one from right to left on top. And the other straight down on the right side. The first line connects Chochma-Wisdom to Chesed-Love while the second line connects Chochma-Wisdom to Chesed. The vowel associated with Chochma-Wisdom is a Petach, while Segol is associated with Chesed. The word Dalet means DOOR, while the word Petachmeans OPENING. Since Chochma-Wisdom represents our hight perception of the Divine, it is Gods opening to reveal Himself. Segol is related to the word Segula, a remedy that works for no apparent reason. SEGOL thus parallels the Sefirah of Chesed, which gives freely, even without reason (Kaplan, Aryeh. 1979. Tr. The Bahir York Beach: Samuel Weiser. 113).
Gimmel Daleth, show kindness to the Poor [Gemol Dallim]. Why is the foot of the Gimmel stretched toward the Daleth? Because it is fitting for the benevolent to run after [seek out] the poor. And why is the roof [foot] of the Daleth stretched out toward the Gimmel ? Because he [the poor] must make himself available to him. And why is the face of the Daleth turned away from the Gimmel ? Because he must give him [help] in secret, [As though with averted face] lest he be ashamed of him (Shabbat 104a).
The conjunction of the two letters Gimel and Dalet indicates issuing forth
Gimel, giving and Dalet receiving (Zohar. 1984. Tr. Harry Sperling et al. New York: Soncino 1984. Tr. Harry Sperling et al. New York: Soncino. 1:244b).
Four is a very important number in Kabbalah. There are four worlds - Asiyah - the World of Action, Yetzirah - the World of Feelings or Emotions, Beriyah - the World of Creation, Atzilut - the World of Emanation; four souls associated with the four worlds - Nephesh, Ruach, Neshama, Chaya; four letters in the name of God - Yud Hey Vav Hey; and four cups of wine at the Passover Seder.
NUN is the 14th letter of the Hebrew alphabet and has a numerical value of 50, makes a sound like the N in Now, and means SHINE, SPOUT, SPREAD in Hebrew and FISH in Aramaic. The Nun has the head of a Zayin. The body is an elongated Zayin. The Nun is one of 5 letters [Caf Mem Nun Pey Tsade] that have 2 forms - the regular [bent] form used in the beginning and middle of a word and the FINAL FORM - SOFIT - used as the last letter of a word (Shabbat 104a).
According to the ancient kabbalistic text The Bahir, the bent Nun represents the spinal cord through which the body is fed by the brain (Kaplan, Aryeh. 1979. Tr. The Bahir York Beach: Samuel Weiser. 31).
The final Nun represents, by its shape, man who walks erect, and who mystically combines male and female (Zohar. 1984. Tr. Harry Sperling et al. New York: Soncino 1:18b-19a. 80).
Nun is one of 7 letters which may be adorned with Tagin, or little crowns, in the Torah, Tefillin or Mezzuzah scroll. These are called the SHAYNAYZ GAYTZ letters [Shin Ayin Tet Nun Zayin Gimel Tsade] Each one of these letters contains a Zayin. A tag is composed of 3 strokes which themselves look like little Zayins. There is a wonderful story in Talmud, which describes Moses ascending to Heaven to find God occupied in affixing Tagin to the letters of Torah (Menachot 29b).
Ashre - [This is (Psalms 145:1-21), which is arranged alphabetically, save that the verse beginning with the letter Nun (N) is missing]. R. Johanan says: Why is there no Nun in (Ashre)? [Because the fall of the enemies of Israel begins with it [Nephilim]. For it is written: Fallen is [nefal - Nun Pey Lamed Hey] the virgin of Israel, she shall no more rise (Amos 5:2). R. Nachman b. Isaac says: Even so, David refers to it by inspiration [Literally the Holy Spirit. The meaning is, David knew by inspiration that Amos was going to prophesy the downfall of Israel, and he refers to that verse and prophesies their being raised up again, though their downfall is not mentioned by < David] and promises them an uplifting. For it is written: The Lord upholdeth all that fall (Psalm 145:14). (Berachot 4b).
Abaye said: he should eat fish, for Samuel said, Nun, Samek, Ayin [read] Nuna [fish] sama [are a healing] la-enayim [to the eyes]! - That is at the end of the illness [Three letters of the Hebrew alphabet in order] (Nedarim 54b).
Sefer Yetzirah divides the Hebrew Letters into 3 categories: 3 mothers - Aleph Mem Shin, 7 doubles - Beit Gimel Dalet Caf Pey Resh Tav and 12 elementals - Hey Vav Zayin Chet Tet Yud Lamed Nun Samech Ayin Tsade Kuf.
Nun is one of the Elementals. Twelve Elementals, their foundation is [that] He engraved them, and transformed them, and with them He formed 12 constellations in the Universe, 12 months in the Year and 12 directions in the soul, male and female. And God made the letter Nun King over smell. And He bound a crown to it and He combined one with another and with them He formed Scorpio in the Universe, Cheshvan in the Year, and the intentine in the Soul male and female (Kaplan, Aryeh. 1990. Sefer Yetzirah. The Book of Creation York Beach: Samuel Weiser. 197, 209, 217).
This work is accompanied by the kabbalistic explanation printed above.
The original 5x7 watercolor painting of this image is available.
This is great Bar Mitzvah gift.
mat color:: green
stock number:: nm2-83