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dhbhAd

And Other Dirty Four-Letter Words


A Primer in Literal Qabalah
(A 1° g, B 10° c)
AN IVxvi e.n., Dies Solis

By Fra. Nur-i-Siyah

Bubastis Oasis
Ordo Templi Orientis
Valley of Dallas
Texas

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.


Definitions:
Literal Qabalah – The mystico-magical study of alphabets and their subsequent manipulation for
mystico-magical purposes. The alphabet most predominantly used has been Hebrew.

Gematria – (from Grk. γραµµατεια, and µετρια, “letter-play” and “measure.”) A literal qabalistic
technique which associates numerical values to the Hebrew alphabet for the purposes of discovering
additional levels of meaning which are not immediately apprehended otherwise.

Notariqon – (from Lat. notarius, “shorthand writer”.) A literal qabalistic technique which 1) utilizes
the first letter of each word within a given sentence to generate a new word, or 2) that takes each letter
of a given word and uses them to create a sentence wherein each word begins with the letters taken.

Temurah – (Heb., “permutation”.) A literal qabalistic technique which involves 1) rearranging the
letters of a given word to create a new word, as in an anagram, or 2) rearranging the alphabet and its
values in such a way so that letters of a given word may be substituted by new letters, as in a cypher.

Tziruph – A form of Temurah that involves folding the Hebrew alphabet in half upon itself thus
creating a simple substitution cypher. The two most popular of these cyphers are the AthBSh and
ALBM cyphers.

Aiq Bekar – Also called “The Qabalah of the Nine Chambers”. A form of Temurah that utilizes a 3 x 3
grid in which the letters of the alphabet are placed. It is arranged so that the 27 letters of the Hebrew
alphabet (22 + 5 “final” letters) fill the grid completely with 3 letters per cell. To use the Aiq Bekar
simply replace each letter with one of its two companions. Another technique in which the Aiq Bekar is
used involves the creation of a linear figure from the position of the letters of a word within the grid.

Other Forms of Temurah


Thashrag – A form of Temurah whereby a word is simply written backwards.
Avgad – A form of Temurah where the letters of a word are substituted with the letter which follows it
in the alphabet.
Boustrophedon – A form of Temurah in which a given text is layered upon itself in alternating
directions.
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A Brief Timetable:

900 BÆV – Adaptation of Phoenician alphabet by Jewish people


800-400 BÆV – Recording of the Torah
600 BÆV – Usage of Aramaic style alphabet
400 BÆV – Addition of the five “final” letters by King Exra
300 BÆV – Development of the square or block script of Hebrew still currently used.
70-200 ÆV - Writing of the Mishnaic text, Pirkei Avot, where gematria is mentioned.
200 ÆV – Writing of the Bariatha of Rabbi Eleazar ben R. Jose of Galilee. A listing of
thirty-two rabbinical rules governing interpretation and exegesis of the Torah.
Rule 29 lists Gematria as a valid technique for understanding the word of God.
200-900 ÆV – The writing and proliferation of the Sefer Yetzirah whereby the Hebrew alphabet
is associated with established astrological and cosmological principles.
1200 ÆV – The writing of the Zohar by Moses de Leon which establishes and fully explores
the Tree of Life.
1200-1400 ÆV – Qabalistic renaissance throughout southern Europe and N. Africa. Abraham
Abulafia connects the Sefirotic system of the Tree of Life to the preexisting literal
qabalistic tradition.

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Hebrew Alphabet with Attributes

Let te r En g. Equiv. Le t te r Name Meani n g

a A Alef Ox

b B/V Bet House

g G Gimel Camel

d D Daleth Door

h H Heh Window

v V/U/W Vav Nail

z Z Zayin Sword

j Ch Chet Fence

F T Tet Serpent

y I/Y Yod Hand

k/] K Kaf Palm

l L Lamed Ox-goad

m/\ M Mem Water

n/} N Nun Fish

s S Samek Prop

o O 'Ayin Eye

p/[ P Peh Mouth

x/{ Tz Tzaddi Fish hook

q Q Quf Back of t/ head

r R Resh Head

c Sh Shin Tooth

t Th Tav Tau Cross

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Gematria:

A s stated above gematria is the association of numerical values to letters. This is generally done
in order to coax additional values and equivalencies from the word outside of standard references of
meaning.
There are a number of styles of gematria available to the Qabalist each producing dramatically
different results. Regardless of how divergent the style being used is it will have have at least one thing
in common with every other form of gematria: the substitution of alphabetical notation for numerical
value. If this does not occur, then what is being performed is not gematria.
Gematria is the Alpha and Omega of literal Qabalah. For example, let's say you are in the
process of creating a magical motto for yourself as a seal to the degree you hold (let's say you're a
Neophyte of the ATAT.) Since this degree represents your position in Malkuth you opt for a suitably
earthy motto: “The Light of the World,” \lvo m h rva h (H'Aur H'M'Olam). Wanting to display a
degree of discretion you decide to use compressive Notariqon to create a word out of your motto:
omhah (HAHMO). Now, you could be satisfied with just knowing that being Soror HA H MO
indicates your dedication to being “the Light of the World”, but how would this process be advanced if
the notariqon were to be converted into numerical form using gematria?
Looking at the above chart we find that HA H MO = 5+1+5+40+70 = 121. Consulting a
qabalistic encyclopedia reveals that there are a number of words in Hebrew that calculate to 121. Some
of these are as follows:
Koel (laok) the Angel that governs the 4th astrological house;
Nineveh (hvnin) the legendary city of Assyria purported to have been built by King
Nimrod;
Noble (lxa, Atzel);
and the phrases “Serving Adam” (mda dbo, Obed Adam) and “Son of a Noble Father”
(kdnila nb, Ben Elindek).

Through meditation on the above correspondences you discover that as a Neophyte (i.e., “newly
planted”) YOU are the “Son of the Noble Father” who “serves Adam”. Just as Nimrod, the son of Cush,
served his father and all of humanity in constructing the jewel of Assyria, Nineveh, the light of the
world. The Fourth House of astrology governs childbirth and parentage and thus your planting as the
“Light of the World” is looked over favorably by the Angel that governs that section of the Heavens.
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The above example illustrates how gematria can be used to amplify meaning once a letter
arrangement has been agreed upon using either Notariqon or the various methods of Temurah.
However, as mentioned above, gematria may be used on its own with splendid results as well.

Styles of Gematria:

1. Normal Value (Mispar Hechrachi) – Whereby a sum is calculated using the standard numerical
value of each letter from 1-400. E.g., OZ (zo) = 70+7 = 77
2. Final (Great) Value (Mispar Gadol) – Whereby a sum is calculated using the final values
attributed to the letters K, M, N, P, & Tz (], \, }, [, & {) when they appear at the end of a
word. E.g., AUMGN (}mva) = 1+6+40+3+700 = 750
3. Minor Value (Mispar Katan) - Whereby a number is calculated using the standard numerical
value of each letter but with the zeros removed. The result may either be a sum of the digits
calculated or a number that is composed of the values for each letter. (See also the Temurah
section on Aiq Bekar.) E.g., OZ (zo) = 70 +7 = 14 or 77
4. Serial Order Value (Mispar Siduri) - Whereby a sum is calculated using the numerical position
of the Hebrew alphabet (1-22). E.g., OZ (zo) = 16 + 7 = 23
5. Square of Normal Value (Mispar P'rati) - Whereby a sum is calculated using the standard
numerical value of each letter multiplied by itself. E.g., OZ (zo) = 702+72= 4,949
6. Cube of Normal Value - Whereby a sum is calculated using the standard numerical value of

each letter multiplied by its squared normal value. E.g., OZ (zo) = 703+73 = 343,343
7. Square of Serial Order Value (Mispar Siduri P'rati) - Whereby a sum is calculated using the
numerical position of the Hebrew alphabet (1-22) multiplied by itself.

E.g., OZ (zo) = 162 + 72 = 305


8. Cube of Serial Order Value - Whereby a sum is calculated using the numerical position of the
Hebrew alphabet (1-22) multiplied its squared serial order value.

E.g., OZ (zo) = 163+ 73 = 4,439


9. Normal Inclusive Value (Mispar Kidmi) - Whereby a sum is calculated using the standard
numerical value of a letter added to all other numbers that precede it back to 1. E.g., OZ (zo) =
(70+69+68 ... 3+2+1) + (7+6+5+4+3+2+1) = 353

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10. Serial Order Inclusive Value (Mispar Siduri Kidmi) - Whereby a sum is calculated using the
numerical position of the Hebrew alphabet (1-22) added to all other numbers that precede it
back to 1. E.g., OZ (zo) = (16+15+14 ... 3+2+1) + (7+6+5+4+3+2+1) = 164
11. Nominal Value (Mispar Shemi) - Whereby a sum is calculated using the standard numerical
value of a letter's name written in full and added to sums calculated in the same fashion.
E.g., OZ (zo) = 'Ayin + Zayin = (O=70 + I=10 + N=50) + (Z=7 + I=10 + N=50) = 197; A
variation of this (Mispar Gadol Shemi) utilizes the “Final” values of the letters as well. E.g., OZ
(zo) = 'Ayin + Zayin = (O=70 + I=10 + N[fin.]=700) + (Z=7 + I=10 + N[fin.]=700) = 1,497
12. Numeral Value (Mispar Miphqadh) - Whereby a sum is calculated using the nominal value of
the name of the numerical value of each letter.
E.g., OZ (zo) = Seventy + Seven = Shiv'im + Shiv'a = (Sh=300 + B=2 + O=70 + I=10 + M=40) +
(Sh=300 + B=2 + O=70 + H=5) = 799 or 1,359 if using M(fin.)
13. Double Integrated Nominal Value - Whereby the individual letters of a word are written as in
the nominal value calculation but then expanded so that each letter of that spelling is also
written in full. E.g., OZ (zo) = [(o + i + n) + ( i + d) + ( n + n)] + [(z + i + n) + ( i + d) + ( n + n)]=
[(O=70 + I=10 + N=50) + (I=10 + D=4) + (N=50 + V=6 + N=50)] + [(Z=7 + I=10 + N=50) +
(I=10 + D=4) + (N=50 + V=6 + N=50)]= 437
14. Atbash Value (cbta) - Whereby a sum is calculated using a replacement cypher where the
first letter (a) is given the normal value of the last letter (t), the second letter (b) is given the
normal value of the second-to-last letter (c), etc. (see Temurah section for more details).
E.g., OZ (zo) = 7 + 70 = 77. In this instance the Atbash substitution for 'Ayin is Zain and vice
versa. Therefore, the normal value of the letters does not change. However in the case of
AUMGN (ngmva = Normal Value: 1+6+40+3+50 = 100) the Atbash value is 699
(=400+80+10+200+9)
15. Albam Value (mbla) - Whereby a sum is calculated using a replacement cypher where the first
letter (a) is given the normal value of the middle or 12th letter (l), the second letter (b) is given
the normal value of the 13th letter (m), etc. (see Temurah section for more details).
E.g., OZ (zo) = 5 + 90 = 95. Here 'Ayin and Zain are given the Normal Values of Teth and
Tzaddi.

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16. Integral Reduced Value (Mispar Katan Mispari) - Whereby a number is calculated using the
standard Normal Value of each letter and then reduced by adding together the digits that make
up the sum. Finally reducing the sum to a number between 1-9. E.g., OZ (zo) = 70+7 = 77 = 14
= 4+1 = 5
17. Esoteric Tarot Value – Whereby a sum is calculated by giving each letter the number associated
with its Atu in the Golden Dawn or Thelemic Tarot. E.g., OZ (zo) = (The Devil, Atu XV +
The Lovers, Atu VI) 15+6 = 21.
18. Tree of Life Path Value - Whereby a sum is calculated by giving each letter the number
associated with its Path/Key on the Golden Dawn or Thelemic Tree of Life.
E.g., OZ (zo) = 26 + 17 = 43
19. Enlarged Letter Value - Whereby a sum is calculated using each enlarged letter's Normal Value

multiplied by 1,000. E.g., OZ (zo) = 70,000+7 = 70,007

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Hebrew Alphabet with Various Values

Le t te r N o rma l Seria l G rea t Value Min o r


Value Value Value

a 1 1 1

b 2 2 2

g 3 3 3

d 4 4 4

h 5 5 5

v 6 6 6

z 7 7 7

j 8 8 8

F 9 9 9

y 10 10 1

k/] 20 11/23 500 2

l 30 12 3

m/\ 40 13/24 600 4

n/} 50 14/25 700 5

s 60 15 6

o 70 16 7

p/[ 80 17/26 800 8

x/{ 90 18/27 900 9

q 100 19 1

r 200 20 2

c 300 21 3

t 400 22 4

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Hebrew Alphabet with Various Values (cont.)

Let te r Squ. N o rm. Cube N o rm. Squ. Se r. Cube Se r.


Value Value Value Value

a 1 1 1 1

b 4 8 4 8

g 9 27 9 27

d 16 64 16 64

h 25 125 25 125

v 36 216 36 216

z 49 343 49 343

j 64 512 64 512

F 81 729 81 729

y 100 1,000 100 1,000

k 400 8,000 121 1,331

l 900 27,000 144 1,728

m 1,600 64,000 169 2,197

n 2,500 125,000 196 2,744

s 3,600 216,000 225 3,375

o 4,900 343,000 256 4,096

p 6,400 512,000 289 4,913

x 8,100 729,000 324 5,832

q 10,000 1,000,000 361 6,859

r 40,000 8,000,000 400 8,000

c 90,000 27,000,000 441 9,261

t 160,000 64,000,000 484 10,648

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Hebrew Alphabet with Various Values (cont.)

Le t te r N o rm. In c l. Se r. In c l. N omi n. N um.


Value Value Value Value

a 1 1 111/831 13

b 3 3 412 400

g 6 6 73 335

d 10 10 434 278

h 15 15 10 350

v 21 21 12 605

z 28 28 67/717 377

j 36 36 418 395

F 45 45 419 775

y 55 55 20 575

k 75 66 100/820 620

l 105 78 74 680

m 145 91 90/650 323

n 195 105 106/756 398

s 255 120 120/600 650

o 325 136 130/780 422

p 405 153 85 440

x 495 171 104 820

q 595 190 186/906 455

r 795 210 510 1,157

c 1,095 231 360/1,010 1,077

t 1,495 253 400 720

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Hebrew Alphabet with Various Values (cont.)

D o ub. In t. In t. Red.
Let te r Atbas h Albam
N om. Val. Value

a 270 400 30 1

b 838 300 40 2

g 237 200 50 3

d 914 100 60 4

h 20 90 70 5

v 24 80 80 6

z 193 70 90 7

j 844 60 100 8

F 845 50 200 9

y 466 40 300 1

k 185 30 400 2

l 595 20 1 3

m 200 10 2 4

n 224 9 3 5

s 310 8 4 6

o 256 7 5 7

p 95 6 6 8

x 558 5 7 9

q 283 4 8 1

r 890 3 9 2

c 486 2 10 3

t 418 1 20 4

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Hebrew Alphabet with Various Values (cont.)

Le t te r Es o. Tar o t Key Value En l. Le t te r


Value Value

a 0 11 1,000

b 1 12 2,000

g 2 13 3,000

d 3 14 4,000

h 4 15 5,000

v 5 16 6,000

z 6 17 7,000

j 7 18 8,000

F 8 19 9,000

y 9 20 10,000

k 10 21 20,000

l 11 22 30,000

m 12 23 40,000

n 13 24 50,000

s 14 25 60,000

o 15 26 70,000

p 16 27 80,000

x 17 28 90,000

q 18 29 100,000

r 19 30 200,000

c 20 31 300,000

t 21 32 400,000

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Notariqon:

A s previously mentioned Notariqon can be one of two things. It can either be the condensation
of a sentence into a word or an expansion of a word into a sentence. These two Notariqon styles are
known as Compressive and Expansive Notariqon respectively.
1. Compressive Notariqon – Historically this style of creating a magical acronym can be
performed in one of three ways. Although through experimentation the Qabalist will discover
additional techniques which may better appeal to their cause.
a) Initial Compressive Notariqon – This technique takes the first letter of each word in a given
sentence and uses it to form a new word. This technique is still used today and is called an
acronym. E.g., ARARITA (atirara) Achad Rosh: Acdotho Rosh Ichudo: Temurahzo Achad
(One is His Beginning: One is His Individuality: His Permutation is One.)
b) Terminal Compressive Notariqon - This technique takes the last letter of each word in a
given sentence and uses it to form a new word. E.g., DShOShOOD (doococd) AchaD
RoSh: AcdothO RoSh IchudO : Temurahz O AchaD , (One is His Beginning: One is His
Individuality: His Permutation is One.)
c) Medial Compressive Notariqon - This technique takes either one or two middle letters of
each word in a given sentence and uses it to form a new word. E.g., ChOD O OURCh
( JrvoodoJ) AChad R O sh: AcDO tho R O sh IchU do: TemuR ahzo AChad (One is His
Beginning: One is His Individuality: His Permutation is One.)
2. Expansive Notariqon – In this technique a previously existing word is expanded so that each
letter serves as the first letter of a new word in a meaningful sentence. Theoretically, the same
type of terminal and medial manipulations found in the compressive varieties of Notariqon
could also be applied here as well. As an aside, Crowley was particularly fond of this type of
Notariqon as is evident throughout Liber 418: The Vision and the Voice. (From the Vision of the
24th Aethyr - SVLPHVR = Summa via lucis: per Hephaestum undas regas; “The Highest way of
Light: through Hephaestus you shall rule the waters.”)
E.g., BERASHITH (ticarb, “In the Beginning”) = hrvt larci vlbqic \ihla har
ticarb = Berashith Rahi A lohim Sheyeqbelo Israel Torah = “In the beginning the Elohim
saw that Israel would accept the Law.”

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Temurah:
Temurah literally means “Permutation” and it is in these series of techniques that Literal
Qabalah became wed to the world of cryptography.
Most Temurah falls into two basic categories:

1. Actual Permutation – Where words or phrases maintain the letters of which they are
constituted, but whose order has been changed as in the example of an anagram. Temurah
techniques that can be called Actual Permutations are Boustrophedon and Thashrag
2. Substitutive Permutation – are methods which through consistent internal rules are able to
change the value of a letter to that of another through substitution. Examples of this
category of Temurah are the myriad forms of Tziruph, Aiq Bekar and Avgad techniques.

The practical purposes of such exercises in a climate charged with anti-Semitic and heretical
sentiments like Medieval Europe should be obvious, but what would be the practical purposes of such
exercises to the modern Qabalist?
The answer to this question obviously will vary greatly depending on the category and
technique being used. For instance, the primary advantage of using an actual permutative technique
would be that the numerical value of the words being used would be unaffected thereby creating a
gematrial link between the anagrams. But in instances where a substitutive permutation is being used
the enumeration and meditative quality of the result will vary greatly.

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Tziruph:

Tziruph ([rx, “to refine”) are simple substitution cyphers that are generated using specific
conditions. 1) The whole alphabet is used. 2) One letter may only equal one other letter. 3) Regardless
of where the split occurs or which direction the second half is ordered, the letters must move in a
consistent sequence.
There are a wide number of Tziruph that may be generated according to these basic rules. Bill
Whitcomb in his Magician's Companion lists 24 such cyphers. Also includes in the same section
Agrippa's Right and Averse Tables of Commutation which in fact are the same as Trithemius' Tabula
Recta from his classic Polygraphia. These tables in my opinion come perilously close to crossing the line
from Literal Qabalah into mundane cryptography. However, examples of how this may be done for
magical purposes is included at the end of this section.

Atbash Cypher:

The Atbash cypher is named like all of the Tziruph cyphers by taking the first pair of
substitutions; A=Th & B=Sh.
Here the alphabet is folded upon itself evenly at the juncture between the 11th and 12th letter.

A–a B–b G –g D –d H –h V–v Z –z Ch – J T – f Y–y K–k

Th – t Sh – c R – r Q –q Tz – x P– p O –o S–s N–n M-m L–l

E.g., HRILIU = vylyrh = 261 (Normal Value) = Abomination (nvard, deraon),


= Festival prayer book (rvzJm, Machzor)
TzGMKMP = pmkmgx =273 (Atbash Value)
= “The Hidden Light” (zvgn rva, Aur Naguz)
= The Rejected Stone
(\invbh vsam }ba, Eben Maasu ha-Bonim)
= Hiram Abiff (viba \riJ, Churam Abiv)

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ALbam Cypher:

Here the alphabet is also folded upon itself as in the Atbash cypher but the second half has been
flipped.

A–a B–b G –g D –d H –h V–v Z –z Ch – J T – f Y–y K–k

L–l M-m N –n S– s O –o P– p Tz – x Q –q R–r Sh – c Th – t

E.g., HRILIU = vylyrh = 261 (Normal Value) = Abomination (nvard, deraon),


= Festival prayer book (rvzJm, Machzor)
OTShAShP = [cacfo = 760 (Albam Value)
= Witchcraft (\sq, Qesem)
= Religious Feast (trxo, Otzrat)

Aiq Bekar:

A lso called the Qabalah of the Nine Chambers due to its shape. Its name comes from the literal
content of the first two chambers: AIQ/BKR. The nine chambers are a grid composed of three columns
and three rows into which are placed the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet as well as the final forms of
Kaf, Mem, Nun, Peh and Tzaddi. This arrangement allows every letter to be teamed with the two other
letters that share a multiple of either 10 or 100. So Alef which has a normal value of 1 shares the same
cell as Yod with its value of 10 and Qof with its value of 100. (See chart below)
There are a number of ways in which the Aiq Bekar can be used by the Qabalist and magician.
First and foremost, since it is a hybrid form of Temurah and gematria (related to the minor value
calculation of the alphabet) it can be used to reveal additional information in any word to which it is
subjected. This can be accomplished by taking a word and replacing its letters with one of th letters
found within the chamber in which it resides thus generating a new word. E.g., Oz (zo, Strength)
through Aiq Bekar also equals ON (}o, an Egyptian name for the eternal God and also the Greek word
for “being”, i.e., “He Who Is”). Another example would be the word HRILIU (vilirh, the shrill cry of
ecstasy from Liber XV and elsewhere in Crowley's works) through Aiq Bekar becomes Neka l'Im (\li
akn, “smitten for mother”)
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g =3 b=2 a =1
l = 30 k = 20 y = 10
c = 300 r = 200 q = 100

v =6 H =5 d =4
s = 60 n = 50 m = 40
\ = 600 ] = 500 t = 400

f =9 H =8 z =7
x = 90 p = 80 o = 70
{ = 900 [ = 800 } = 700
The Aiq Bekar, the Qabala of the Nine Chambers

Another use for the Aiq Bekar has been written about extensively and involves the generation of
sigils, or linear glyphs, for various spiritual entities, specifically planetary entities. Strictly speaking and
contrary to what almost every author on this subject has written so far, the Aiq Bekar is not necessary
for this process. However since so many writers on this subject have continued this line of reasoning I
feel it would be useful to the do the same before stating the reasons otherwise.
It has been stated that to generate a sigil for both planetary spirits and intelligences the
following would be necessary. First take the name of the entity and calculate the value of each letter,
then reduce the value of each letter by a factor of 10 if possible. Therefore, Lamed with a value of 30 is
given a value of 3, while Shin with a value of 300 is reduced to 30. The name thus converted into a
numerical sequence is then mapped onto the magical square (kamea) for the planet in question.
Below for instance is the sigil for Zazel, the spirit of the planet Saturn. Saturn's magic square
consists of the numbers 1-9 arranged so that the sum of every row, column and diagonal equal 15. The
value of the name Zazel, 7 +1+7+30 is altered using Aiq Bekar to 7+1+7+3. A line is then drawn from
the 7 square to the one, back to the seven and then terminating at the 3 thus generating the figure
below.
In cases where the planetary squares have values larger than 9, combinations of Hebrew letters
are used to denote the higher value. For instance, in the Kamea of Chesed/Jupiter 15 is listed as vf,
since the normal value of Teth (9) and Vau (6) when added equals 15. However, in other squares 15 is
shown as hy, 10+5, instead.
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The sigil for the Saturnian Spirit Zazel generated using Aiq Bekar and traced on the Kamea for Saturn.

The reason why I'm suggesting that this method does not require Aiq Bekar is because all that
is being done is a reduction of the normal value of the letter by a factor of 10 and only if the numerical
range of the kamea used demands it. This simply does not require a nine-chambered grid which was
obviously used for purposes of generating substitution cyphers. It's akin to using the hood of your car as
a barbecue grill – you certainly could do so, but that's not what it was designed for.

Thashrag:

Probably one of the simplest forms of Temurah, Thashrag, is simply creating an anagram of a
word by writing it backwards. The name is actually derived from Thashraq (qrct), the last four letters
of the Hebrew alphabet written in reverse order. Examples of possible uses follow.
E.g., Abetz (xba, to shine, to be white, conspicuous) = 93 = Tzebah (abx, to come together, to
attack in a military formation)

Boustrophedon:
Boustrophedon (from the Greek phrase “as the ox turns” which refers to the motion of plowing)
was developed and mastered by the Greeks during the Pre-Hellenic periods somewhere around
800-600 BÆV. However, there are a number of cultures which used it independently of the Greeks. In
all likelihood it is from the Greeks that the Jewish Qabalists incorporated the technique.
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The technique is performed simply by taking a line of text written in one direction and follow it
with another line of text written in the opposite direction. In some cases the lines not only alternate
horizontally but also vertically where the text is written upside down and in an alternating direction.
Probably the most famous example of this technique is found in the generation of the 216-
Letter name of God, also called the Shem H'Mephorash. The Shem H'Mephorash (“The Explicit
Name”) is created by using three verses from the Book of Exodus, 14:19-21:

‫מ@ד‬B‫ע‬D‫י‬D‫ם ו‬I‫יה‬L‫נ‬N‫פ‬P‫ן מ‬R‫נ‬R‫ע‬I‫מוד ה‬D‫ע ע‬D‫ס‬P‫י‬D‫ם ו‬I‫יה‬L‫חר‬B ‫א‬L‫ מ‬N‫ך‬I‫ל‬L‫י‬D‫ל ו‬L‫א‬R‫ר‬N‫יש‬P ‫ה‬L‫נ‬B‫ח‬D‫י מ‬L‫נ‬N‫פ‬P‫ ל‬N‫ך‬L‫ה@ל‬D‫ים ה‬P‫א^ל@ה‬R‫ ה‬N‫אך‬N‫ל‬D‫ע מ‬D‫ס‬P‫י‬D‫ו‬
‫ם׃‬I‫יה‬L‫ר‬B‫אח‬L‫מ‬
And the angel of God, which went before the camp of Israel, removed and went behind them;
and the pillar of the cloud went from before their face, and stood behind them:

‫ה‬T‫ל־ז‬T‫ה א‬T‫ת־ה[ל]̀יל]ה ̀ול_א־ק]ר[ב ז‬T‫ר א‬T‫̀ך ו[י]א‬T‫הע]נ]ן ̀וה[ח_ש‬T ‫י‬l‫ל ו[̀יה‬m‫̀שר]א‬l‫ה י‬m‫נ‬o‫ין מ[ח‬m‫ם וב‬l‫̀צר[י‬l‫ה מ‬m‫נ‬o‫ין ׀ מ[ח‬m‫ו[י]ב_א ב‬
‫כ]ל־ה[ל]̀יל]ה׃‬
And it came between the camp of the Egyptians and the camp of Israel; and it was a cloud and
darkness [to them], but it gave light by night [to these]: so that the one came not near the other all the
night.

‫ח]ר]ב]ה‬T‫ת־ה[י]ם ל‬T‫ם א‬T‫ים ע[ז]ה כ]ל־ה[ל[̀יל]ה ו[י]ש‬l‫ת־ה[י]ם ̀ברוח[ ק]ד‬T‫̀ך ̀יהו]ה ׀ א‬T‫ת־י]ד_ו ע[ל־ה[י]ם ו[י_ול‬T‫ה א‬T‫ט מ_ש‬m‫ו[י‬
‫ם׃‬l‫ב]̀קעו ה[מ]י‬l‫ו[י‬
And Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the LORD caused the sea to go [back] by a
strong east wind all that night, and made the sea dry [land], and the waters were divided.

The first verse is written right to left as is traditionally done with Hebrew. The next verse, verse
20, is then written from left to right and finally verse 21 is written from right to left. All of the spaces
are removed between the words of each verse with the result being the beginnings of a grid consisting
of 216 cells arranged in three rows and 72 columns. By taking the vertical readings of the columns the
Qabalist and the ceremonial magician may then view this result as having produced 72 three-lettered
Names of God. These names due to the significance of the number 72 may be seen to relate to a period
of five days (one of the 72 quinances of the Zodiac) or to the number of Psalms in the first two books
of Psalms, or to the 36 tarot cards of the Minor Arcana (sans Aces and Courts) which govern the 36
decans of the Zodiac. The 72 three-letter Names may also be angelicized by adding either an -AL or
-IH ending for purposes of invocation.

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The following is an example of this procedure for the first 18 divine and angelic names.

18 17 16 15 14 13 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

k L H H M I H L A H k A L M O S I V
L A Q r b Z H A L Z H k L H L I L H
I V M I H L O V d I t A H c M f I V
-AL -IH -IH -AL -AL -AL -IH -IH -IH -AL -AL -IH -AL -IH -IH -AL -AL -IH

To show you how this may be done with a modern revealed text let's take a look at Liber AL as
an example. Below I have taken Ch. I, verse 61, of Liber AL, one of the most beloved verses of the
Book of the Law, and removed all of the stops and space markings. We are left with a 685 character
piece of text. The factors of 685 are 137 and 5 so I created a table consisting of 685 cells organized into
137 columns and 5 rows. Using Boustrophedon I entered the first set of 137 characters going from left
to right and then right to left in the second row, etc. The result is a form of Thelemic Shem
h'Mephorash with 137 divine names of 5 letters each. Each name's letters can be seen as elemental in
nature therefore making every name a Pentagrammaton. Also it should be mentioned that 137 besides
being the 33rd Prime number is also the number scientists have associated with the fine structure
constant, the constant that governs the strength of electromagnetic interactions in the Universe.
Additionally, and perhaps just as importantly 137 is the normal value of the Hebrew word Qabalah
(hlbq)!

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 ...

y B u t t t o l o v e m e i s b e t t e r t h 

h t a h t n i l l a e s o l l l a h s t s u d 

c h o u r Y e s h a l l g a t h e r g o o d s 

v o d e l i e v e l p r u p r o e l a P u o y 

h r v o l u p t u o u s I w h o a m a l l p l 

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Avgad:
Avgad is named after the first 4 letters of the Hebrew Alphabet (dgba - A, B, G, D) and is a
simple technique where the letters of a word are replaced with the letters that follow them.
E.g., Oz (zo, 77), meaning “strength” through Avgad becomes Pach ( Jp, 88) meaning “trap” or
“danger.” Food for thought, eh?

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Appendix 1: Magical Uses for the Trithemian Tabula Recta

Th Sh R Q Tz P O S N M L K Y T Ch Z V H D G B A

A Th Sh R Q Tz P O S N M L K Y T Ch Z V H D G B

B A Th Sh R Q Tz P O S N M L K Y T Ch Z V H D G

G B A Th Sh R Q Tz P O S N M L K Y T Ch Z V H D

D G B A Th Sh R Q Tz P O S N M L K Y T Ch Z V H

H D G B A Th Sh R Q Tz P O S N M L K Y T Ch Z V

V H D G B A Th Sh R Q Tz P O S N M L K Y T Ch Z

Z V H D G B A Th Sh R Q Tz P O S N M L K Y T Ch

Ch Z V H D G B A Th Sh R Q Tz P O S N M L K Y T

T Ch Z V H D G B A Th Sh R Q Tz P O S N M L K Y

Y T Ch Z V H D G B A Th Sh R Q Tz P O S N M L K

K Y T Ch Z V H D G B A Th Sh R Q Tz P O S N M L

L K Y T Ch Z V H D G B A Th Sh R Q Tz P O S N M

M L K Y T Ch Z V H D G B A Th Sh R Q Tz P O S N

N M L K Y T Ch Z V H D G B A Th Sh R Q Tz P O S

S N M L K Y T Ch Z V H D G B A Th Sh R Q Tz P O

O S N M L K Y T Ch Z V H D G B A Th Sh R Q Tz P

P O S N M L K Y T Ch Z V H D G B A Th Sh R Q Tz

Tz P O S N M L K Y T Ch Z V H D G B A Th Sh R Q

Q Tz P O S N M L K Y T Ch Z V H D G B A Th Sh R

R Q Tz P O S N M L K Y T Ch Z V H D G B A Th Sh

Sh R Q Tz P O S N M L K Y T Ch Z V H D G B A Th

As mentioned in the Temurah section on Tziruph Trithemius' Tabula Recta and by extension
Agrippa's Tables of Commutation straddle that blurry line between Literal Qablah and cryptography.
Here are a few examples of how they can be used by a magician to great effect.
First, as a general substitution cypher one can perform the following. First take your word, let's
say we use the notariqon-ized magical motto of our Neophyte from above, HA HMO. The first letter
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stays the same and serves as the anchor for the cypher. The next letter, A, will be substituted by
whatever letter is below it in the second row. In this case it's B. Next the letter, H, is replaced by
whatever letter is beneath it in the third row = Z, and so on. The result is the word HBZOR (rozbh)
(284) which could be translated as “The Bezoar” where bezoars were magical stones issued from the
stomachs of cows and that had the ability to neutralize any poison.
Another means to use the Tabula would be by using a key to establish the necessary letters. For
example using our Neophyte's motto, HA HMO, we find that it consists of 5 letters. So it will be
necessary to find another mystically significant five-letter word to serve as our “Key”. Qabalistic
formulae, passwords, etc. can all be used for this purpose. For the sake of example let's use the
Pentagrammaton, Yeheshuah – hvchy. So we take the first row find the letter H and then move down
the column until we find the cell that corresponds to Y on the right hand side. The letter there is N.
next we find the row with the letter A at the top of the column. Move down the column till we find the
letter H and copy down the letter. Next we find the H column again and move down until we stop at
the Sh row, G, etc. We end up with the following word NHGTzR which doesn't mean anything in and
of itself but is composed of two Hebrew words ghn and rx which mean “driver” and “narrow”
respectively. Numerically our “narrow driver” equals 348. The Hebrew words meaning “to be strong,
sharp, bold” (cmj, chemesh), “to be bright and alert” (mcj, cheshem) and “research, a hidden or deep
place” (rqjm, mechoqar) all equal 348.
Using the above method of Temurah one can deduce that in order to fulfill the mandate of one's
motto (i.e., to be “the Light of the World”) using the arcana of the Pentagrammaton you would be
required to be alert and self motivated, dedicated and bold. It communicates that in order for you to
discover your own undiscovered country, the light of which resides in darkest matter, you must endure
and bear down inward without derivation to the core and source of it All.

Love is the law, love under will.


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