The Hebrew Letter Workbook

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THE HEBREW LETTERS
Introduction

The purpose of this booklet is to help all students who want to learn how to draw, and recognize the Hebrew letters. The various shapes of the letters are easily reproduced using modem calligmph pens. These instructions presume students are familiar with various types of graph paper and edged pens. Some students may be aware of other styles of drawing the letters. These particular examples were used for clarity and ease. When this booklet refers to "families of letters," it is not alluding to the &visions familiar to students of Qabalah: the 3 mother, 7 double, and 12 simple letters. The groupings used are based on similarity and relation of shape. Much confusion and error frustrate beginning students because of slight but very important differences in appearance. Experience with this particular organization of the letters has helped many students, allowing them to draw nearly perfect letters in a very short period of time. O course, all progress depends upon correct repetition. f The basic shape o each of the 22 letters is Yod. All others derive f from it. Serious students will understand the profound import of this simple fact

... .... . ... ......... Mern Final..... .59 .. ... Samekh............... 9 Vav..... Kaph... . .. .... Qoph..... . 21 Resh. .. . . Tzaddi....... .... Lamed......... ... ....... 47 Aleph........Table o Contents f Introduction .... .......... Zain............. ....... u1 Farnilyl: ... .... ... ..Peh.... ... Beth.. Nun Final FamilyIII: . .. . ... Peh final Family N: ..... Heh....... . Tav... . ..... 1 Yod....... Kaph Final FamilyV: .... ..... Mem.. Shin Bibliography ......... Cheth.. Nun. Teth FamilyII: ...... 3 7 Daleth. Gimel.... ................... Ayin. ........... . .. Tzaddi Final.. ........ . .... .. .....

Vav Heh Daleth Gimel Beth Aleph Lamed Ka~h Yod Teth Cheth Zayin Tzaddi Peh Ayin Samekh Nun Mem Tau Shin Resh Q0ph Tzuddi Final Peh Final Nun Final Mern Final Kaph Final .

Simplified Hebrew Aleph Beth Gimel Daleth N 1 1 7 1 Lamed Mem n 0 '7 Nun Samekh Ayin Vav Zayin Cheth Teth Peh Tzaddi Qoph Resh n ? P 1 Kaph Tau .

Yod is the only letter that can be written with one stroke.Family I: Yod. . Yod is the basic form o all the Hebrew s f letters. Teth A the introduction says. Again. unlike the Vav family which will be discussed later. The bodies beneath each f begin with a line at the center o the Yo&. Zain and Teth have Yods as their tops. this one begins at the top point. Zain. Like all other letters. Tradition dictates that the starting point for the Yod is slightly higher than the uppermost point on the imaginary grid used for framing a letter. In the first group. students of Tarot and Qabalah will find much o value in these seemingly minor f differences in letter construction.

h47b'. 339? after he wrestled with God and men to become h e l . is the hand a person uses so that he will not lose his place in the Torah. 7heBook of Tokens.Rabbi Kushner ~ f The Zohar tells us that "He who feels small is big and he who feels big is small. spelled N 1')ft in Hebrew. The same idea of masculinity is applied to this letter in Qabalistic literature." The small one.." 7 h Afef-&it.. 7 7 Book o Lefien. is ..."The secret o ti point is the power of the Infinite to contain the finite f hs phenomena within Himself and express them to apparent external reality.. Paul Fbster Cese ' The letter ' a small suspended .YOD The letter name means "HAND. Rabbi G h b & 'is the hand of God. is the tiny Spiritual Israel within each and evey one of us. reveals the spark of essential good hidden within the letter f. A person has ten fingers..." The ancient pictographic form of this letter was a representation of the extended forefinger. there remained within the empty void a single. Before creation .' i the tenth letter. potential point .?. point. a distinctly phallic emblem. is all that s remained of Jacob. a strong hand bringing us out of slavey.

It alludes to God. humblest and. The lesson is clear. in the sense of a series. A the . The tenth letter of the Alef-Beit. I Widom i r%eHebrewhhabet. Who is One and Indivis'~ble. Yod signifies the essential spark of creation.the letter ' because it is the smallest in the alphabet. which follows it in the alphabet. It is unquestionably the most potent of the letters. although his attributes seem to be for numerous and even contradictory. s simplest. . i'he Tarot.. As stated earlier. .In the religious symbolism of the world the open hand is everywhere and at all times a type o beneficence. It is the open hand. they all flow from a unified purpose and existence. ' is barely larger than a dot and it cannot be divided into component parts. in f contradistinction to 3. point (A). The Ineffable chooses to do Its work with the simplest point. Paul Foster Care Drawing the Yod Begin at point to the far left and just above the top line of the grid. smallest.the closed one. the last letter in the alphabet. Finish the letter at point (B). ' ' means the hand o man. and o the f f freedom of the Supreme Spirit.. Yod is the smallest of the letters. The smallness of the also hints at humility. Rabbi Munk h n Rabbi Tzadok Ha-bhen says that the letter represents the single rm point f o which it is possible to begin any letter.

indicating that man's sustenance is obtained by his struggle. which suggests a sword. Lettets o Fire." 73eAld-Beit. 77% Wisdom in the Hebrew &habeg Rabbi Michael Munk The form of the t resembles both a golden scepter and the crown on the head o a king. the successor of f the Ba'al Shem Tov. The Maggid of Mezeritch. 7. The letter t is shaped like a spear. reflects the "straight lightn of the 7. teaches that the verse "A woman of valor is the crown of her husband" (Proverbs 12:4) alludes to the form of the letter t." this and idea finds expression in the shape of the letter itself. The two concepts are related to each other. Rabbi Matiiyahu f GIazemn . Rabbi G i n s b d . through the crown on top as "returning light... whose form is similar to the 3.ZAIN The letter t also means "weapon" or LLsword.it is no coincidence that the letter t is the symbolic representative of both sustenance and armament. The t. portrays the "straight light" descending from God into the worlds. The previous letter.

at the center of the Yod (C). begin a downward stroke with the point of the edged pen. Then. only at the center of the grid (A to B). flattening the pen as the stroke descends (D) then closing it at the base of the letter (E). .Drawing the Zain (Zayin) Repeat the instructions for drawing the Yod.

" thus symbolizing hidden. the nine months of pregnancy) is the power o the mother to carry her inner. That law is a s lo symboliid by the Hebrew letter P . Rabbi M n n uk . whose shape suggests what its name signifies--a serpent The Law in question is the law o f vibration and transformation. concealed good-f the fetus--through the period of pregnancy. n e Wdom i theHebrew &habet." This :: shows that is a general symbol for goodness. 7he True and Invisbk Rosic~dan Order.PaulFoster Case The form of D is "inverted. 7heAlef-Be.TETH To this transformation of man by himself is addressed what is called the Great Work. The secret of the b (numerically equivalent to nine. It is accomplished by the recognition of the law mified in Key 8. "its good is hidden within it. inverted good--as expressed in the Zohar.$ Rabbi Ginsburgh The first D that appears in the Torah is in the word to^ JlP. from Genesis 1 4 "And God saw that the light was good." The forn of the letter P symbolizes the union of the groom and bride consummating with conception. which the ancients represented by the serpent symbol.

begin a curved and narrowing stroke ending at (E).Drawing the Teth Begin by drawing the letter Yod (A to B) on the left side of the grid. Teth is an "open" letter. Make a downward stroke beginning at the center of the Yod (C) curving and widening outward to the a point at the base of the letter (D). It is important to keep a space between the initial Yod (A-B) and the anal descending stroke starting at (FC) and ending at (E). Just below the bottom point of the initial Yod (F) and to the point (C). . Continue the widened stroke horizontally to the right edge of the letter (E).

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Nun. letters in this group sometimes extend above or below the base line. Also. Lamed.Family 11: Vav. . Qimel. every letter in this group descends from the end or tail of the Yod. Tzaddi Final and Nun Final Unlike the previous family.

" 7heAlefBei4 Rabbi Ginsbwgh This is the work of 1: to join us all into a myriad of constellations each remaining different. and thereby all is revealed. Ran.VAV "The '1 is a vertical line representing a pillar or a man standing upright.. Indeed. and this is interpreted as a reference to the Christos. each bound to the other. Rabbi Kushner The Zohar says that all is contained in the mystery of 1.. 7he Book ofLetters. Leftem ofFm. the lo straight and upright stance of this letter suggests honesty and truth..pillars hold Creation together. The same Qabalistic authority connects t with the Son of David. ~ ~ o t r The Zohar a s calls the 1 the letter of truth. jrhe 7 and Invisible R O S ~ C ~ U W Paul F s e Case Order.Rabbi Matityahu GI'erson . .

Drawing the Vav The Vav is essentially an extended Yod. The letter begins at the top and center of the grid (A) and descends past the usual ending point of a Yod (B) to the base of the grid (C). This fact has inspired generations of serious students. .

And so 3 is great.that is the only reason to leave your house and go.Our sages teach (Shabbat 104a) that the f symbolizes a rich man running after a poor man. a foot in motion .Rabbi Ginsbug5 .. and mighty. the 7. with a lower . $173. GADOL. f Rabbi Lawrence Kushner . f represmting an erect man. h21B3. G W ....GIMEL The 2 is composed o a 1.. 7heA/ef Beif.for each one of us there is a deed which cannot be asked which we must nevertheless offer.. Striving to complete the work.completion . That is the only way. 7133. to give him charity.. GBOR 7he Book o Lett-.

a parallelogram is added at the left of the base. Note that this part of the letter is very much like a Vav. It begins at (C) and ends at (D). After this "curved Vav" is drawn.Drawing the Gimel Cimel begins with a Yod commencing at point (A) and like a Vav. using the wide edge of the drawing pen. . continuing to point (B) at the base of the grid. but it is slightly curved to the right.

7he Wisdomin he H e b w Alphabet Rabbi Munk The letter 5 stands for Jaib.. f b 3..the 5 is actually composed of two separate letters. 5 Rabbi Ginsburgh The 5 is a majestic letter. towering above the other letters from its position in the center of the A/eph-Beis. For this reason. erect upon a 2 . one can spell 19b .. 5. E e Alef-Beif.. it is the 1 perched on the roof of the 3. MeJek the King.. our Sages refer to it as "a tower soaring in the air.LAMED Rabbi Yose likened the 5 to a town watchman who stands on a high lookout and calls out his warning. Rabbi Kmhner The fom of 5 is unique in that it is the only letter of the alphabet that ascends above the "upper bound" line of the script of the letters.just like the position of 5 in the alphabet." The 5 is composed of three letters: a downward looking 'which forms the head of a v which stands.. Rabbi Glazenon . Thus it symbolizes the King o Kings. Lettern ofFiie. Oh so beautiful 5... Like the form of 5. heart. in turn... 39. With the two letters around it. Tall and elegant like a palm branch (3%) waved high . the Supreme Ruler. 7Xe Book of letters. the heart is almost at the center of the body but slighdy to the left..

At (D) the letter curves t o the left and narrows downwards to the point (E). to descend into the law. 9. thus providing genuine justice for all of Creation.The 12th letter of the Alef-Beit allows the Father. . It does ascend above. 3. then moves horizontally with the wide edge of the pen to (D). It descends with a small curve to (C). The letter does not descend below the common margin of the other letters. Drawing the Lamed This letter begins with a smaller sized Yod (A t o B) placed above the common upper margin o f the other letters and slightly t o the left.

"the bent over faithful one" (from Rashi's commentaries). No one knows why. Numbers 10:35-36: When the Ark was to set out. he would say: Return 0 Lord.' (37 May Your enemies be scattered.Rabbi K her The bent over form of the 2. This bent over form is the most fundamental (simple) "vessel" form amongst the letters of the alef-beit In the form of the letter f3 we envision a vessel filled by (pregnant with) "introverted" light..The first of these numbers is significant because 106 is the value of the letter name 173.an erudite reader of the manifestos [Fama Fratemitatis and & T Confessiol would have noticed that the Founder of the Fraternity is said to have lived 106 years and that he was born in the year 1378..r) Advance 0 Lord. ?3e Tme and Invisible R O S ~ O NOrder. You who f are lsraelb myriads o thousands! 77je Book ofleften. indicates a sense of poverty and need to receive. Paul Foster Case Q'~~ .. 7he Alef &it. Rabbi Ginsbu@ . whereas 3 is a vessel alone. Moses would say: .. and may Your foes flee before You! And when it halted. as ordinarily reckoned.NUN Before and after Numbers 10:35-36 there are two upside down J's.

. They achieved this exalted privilege through submitting and subjugating themselves to God and his taw.it represents the fifty days during which the Jewish rm people (Spiritual Israel) ascended f o the lowly status of theirEgyptian bondage to stand at the foot o Mount Sinai and f receive the Torah.. Those differences provide accurate recognition. It then descends with a widening curve to the bottom of the grid (C). but there are distinct differences in the bottom stroke. The letter 3 symbolizes the power of submission and LeffersofEre. Please review the instructions and shape of the letter Gimel. From the point (C).. . the wide edge of the pen is used t o make a broad stroke ending at the point (D).humbleness.. Cimel and Nun are similar. Xabbi G b z m n Drawing the Nun The letter Nun begins with a central Yod placed at the top of the grid (A to 8)..

Rabbi M i a . B and f "from hand to hand" (q3)KaL" l Book ofLetters. Following are some insightful quotations which apply to all the final letter forms. carry with them the "secret o redemption" by f which the night of redemption was known beforehand to our fathers. l "the hC2) faithful to the faithful" (ID Neh-eman. Each will be presented as part of the appropriate letter family. The children who were there said: "Let us study the letters without them. happened once that It the teachers didn't come to the house of study.rl "from mouth to mouth" (3 ) Peh.. that we may speak 7. and be strengthened in meditation Y.created the water P. Why do the letters 3 D l t 3 2 have final forms? To teach us that the Law was bnsmitted: P "saying by saying" (7PW P) Ma-awar. Rabbi Eliezer taught that the five letters which have final forms: YStP7.. of his Glory. Y "the righteous to the righteous" (?sf3) Tzadik.FIIYALS Tzaddi Final There are five "final" letters in the Hebrew alphabet. Sim~le Stories Fmm ~e Heart. swims. providing us with nourishment. wherein the fish f.. Rabbi Kushner h God's open hand 7.

Rabbi Pias o K o h f Drawing the Tzaddi Final The Tzaddi Final is essentially an elongated and slightly curved Vav. .After his death. A slanted letter Zain (D to E and F to C) is connected to the descending vertical line (6 to C) of Tzaddi Final. ihen a sacred thought. a ? t X (Tzaddii) ascends from one level to another. It begins with a Yod (A to B) then curves and descends ending below the common margin (C). higher and higher. until he becomes first a sacred letter. and finally a sacred name.

and ends below the common margin (C). - .Drawing the Nun Final The Nun Final is also essentially an elongated and slightly curved Vav. Beginning with a Yod (A to B it then curves and ) descends. The curve and extension below the margin distinguish the Final Nun (C) from the Vav. Accurate identification can be assured if these characteristics are recognized and drawn.

Family 111: Resh. Kaph. Beth. With the exception o Qoph. Qoph. It is important to note that the upper horizontal lines do not extend past the right side vertical ones. Knowing this will prevent a great deal of mistaken identity. and Peh Final This is the family of horizontally extended Yo&. Mem Final. . they all end at the common right margin and f at the common bottom margin. Sarnekh. Peh.

whereas a 1. Its downward extension to its right depicts the beginning of the spinal column. facing the next letter W . PadFoster Case h The 1 . bent over." 7heAlef-Beit." l Tme and Invisibk Rosiuuuan Om'er.Man is the synthesis of all cosmic activities. Its horizontal top depicts the head facing left. Human intelligence gathers together all the various threads of the Life Power's self-manifestation and carries that manifestation beyond anything that could come into existence apart from Man and human intelligence. the "backbone.one of the meanings of 7 is "poor man" (El1) this is opposite the strength of conviction and .. Physical poverty weakens one's conviction and "backbone.. . determination of the previous letter. is composed of a 1and a '. P. This doctrine is based on the Qabalistic meaning of the Hebrew letter 1 . is composed of a t and a 'I." the support of the head .. the head of man. which represents regeneration.the poor man is actually a lower manifestation of 1included in the previous letter.. to which is attributed the "Collective Intelligence. B. whose meaning is "head.Rabbi Ginsburgh How can one distinguish between the f and the 7? The 7. which represents imagination." profiles... in its form.

. Paul F d e r Case f Drawing the Resh The letter Resh begins with a Yod that is extended with the flat edge of the pen to the edge of the right margin (A to B). 7heBook o Tokens. I am the Profuse Giver of all abundance. Regeneration is the product of the intuitive power o the f One Will. It then descends with a narrow stroke along the right margin to the bottom of the common margin (C). Simsk Stories Fmm the Heart. And before which the darkness haste* away. I am the White Brilliance Of the Head which is not a Head. Rabbi M i a I AM the FACE which shineth ever. important that the top section of the letter It is does not extend past the descending line (see the drawing of Daleth).Imagination is the product o the discriminating power of the One f Will.

he mistook temporary shelter for the final letter o the abode o f f perfection (P?). But why must all the shelters of D appear so transient? Only to teach you that God's shelter is unlike man's. The b is all around him. the arm of the tent peg was eas bent.. For one who knows this there is no anxiety.According to one tradition based upon the Kabbalah. W 0 6 . but after mankind left the Garden of Eden. is in the form of a circle (D) inside a square (final mern).B c u e of his error..SAMEKH When you have been wandering for a long time and you come upon the mountain called VD. The form of the b is a circle. Only He who gave you life can keep you in life.Rabbi Gimbugh . Rabbi Kushner f Once the letter b was interchangeable with the final form of the letter mem. Coda Obbqitas. P. (Note f that the Bride (Ma/kuth) i connected to ~e Bridegroom s (Tiphareth)on the Tree ofLife. the Future to Come within the coming world. by the path of the letter D)..The "pointing" finger o the bride points at the revelation f o the future. often symbolizing a wedding ring. this is the shelter of D. the wedding ring placed by the groom on the pointing (index)finger of the bride. 73eAf-Beit. ?heBook o Letten. SINAI.

so that wherever one is. without any physical form or characteristics.God is entirely spiritual in nature.The b is the only regular letter in the Aleph-Beis whose shape comprises two aspects: a rounded blank interior area. which is filled with His Gloy.. Rabbi Munk n Drawing Samekh Like all the other letters in this family. he can be in contact with the Omnipresent Being (Bahir}. This distinguishes it as a "holiow" or "enclosed" letter which completely encloses a space.. At that point the letter ascends to the bottom of the left side of the original Yod (F).he Hebrav&habef. There is a distinct curve at the right bottom of the letter (C). Samekh begins with an extended Yod (A to B). It then descends and narrows slightly t o the point (C). This is a vital component of the letter Samekh! It then widens and touches the bottom margin at (D) and proceeds along the base to the point (E). . as symbolized by the blank inner area (Sepher HaTemumh}. as well as an all-encompassing exterior framing outline. . closed fmme of the b alludes to the whole earth. 73e Wisdomi t. The round.

. as if resting on the head o the king f while in a state of prostration or self-nullification. Rabbi Ginsburgh 3 . similar to the act of bowing before a king..the name f 7 3 also -means "spoon.3 has dual symbolism.forming the image of a crown lying on its side.." is the name of the letter assigned to Key 10 in Tarot.placing palm on palm is an act and sign of subjugation. irhe Tme and Inviwbk R s c u i n Ordw. Pad Foster Case oirca The form of 3 resembles 2 . which Key is a SYMBOLIC REPRESENTATION OF 7HEACTUAL CONSTITUTION OF THE INVSIBLE ORDER. both represent powers o construction and production. . "a grasping hand.. The literal meaning 3 is palm . Whereas in bowing one totally nullifies one's consciousness in the presence of the King. 7he &-Beit.. It stands . and their natures are also similar..The 3 is composed of three connected lines with rounded comers. in placing palm on palm one enters into a state of supplication and prayer to the King to reveal new will from His Supernal Crown (Will)to His subjects." an implement whose rounded shape resembles the palm of the hand ..

Drawing the Kaph Like many other letters. . A wide horizontal stroke is added at the base (D t o E). It begins with a shortened Resh (A t o B t o C). the Kaph resembles its meaning--an open hand.for the palm of the hand serving as a container and at the same time as the measure of what it holds. It is very important to avoid extending the bottom horizontal stroke (D to E) beyond the point (C). Otherwise the letters Kaph and Beth are very easily confused.

as if to say. The open side faces north . Our life must always be lived with the .BETH The 2 is composed o three f connected 1's resembling a square. e Rabbi Lawrence Kushner Why does the Torah begin with the letter 3.Rabbi Bergnlmn M B . but merely the second beginning. :0 06 Deutemnomy 357 WWe-see Genesis 28:14.. From the perspective of the Torah. . 61.. and if they ask. and W 2 R I this ~ $ l f tthe world to come. 3 . In this way when someone asks the 3 "Who made you?.Deuteronomy 342). the other pointing behind and toward the right. P ~ Y .. yet open on the left side. The Secxets ofHebrew Word.7 k AIef &if. awareness that the grave is not our end. 2 : 8 35. the north corresponds to the property o in f n l l 3 2 [Geburah] (Zohar 1:26b). world. which corresponds to the number two? Because our Sages teach that God created not one world. 1 : . 329. Them is M." n Book o fLett-." it points above.229. the top line of the square faces east.. but two.3 3 : . the right side facessouth and the bottom side faces west (fist--see Genesis 2 : 4 Souh-see Exodus 81. Rabbi Gimburgh 2 is drawn with two little points--one pointing above. "What is his name?." it points toward the N. 62 89 Numbers 2 1 . "One is his name. Kabbalah.

otherwise. the letter Beth would be exactly like the letter Kaph. d o you? . Make sure that the bottom stroke begins to the right of the point (C). You don't want to mistake a hand for a house.Drawing the Beth Begin by drawing a shortened letter Resh (A to B to C). Then draw a wide horizontal stroke on the bottom margin (D t o E).

side .. everything seems simple (DtD D).Thus the Pharaoh is the evil mouth. Paul Foster Case The D resembles a mouth with a tooth emerging from its upper jaw and inverting into its cavity. so it is with P .. the 21 stands for practical action. the . Phonetically.. the D and the 3 are interchangeable. Thus.. Whatever your mouth first says without looking beyond. n7e Book of Tokens.Rabbi Ginsbqgf~ The D consists of a 21 with a 9 suspended inside it. who is the king of darkness and the subjugator of Spiritual Israel.In the name "Pharaoh" (B$IlD). while the inside letters spell "evil" (y 7). while the 7 represents wisdom.Rabbi Kushner I AM the MOUTH whence issueth the breath o Life. It is similar to a D on its The white space within the P forms a hidden 3. but D is a mouth which has no eyes. But Just as everything conceals a myriad of layers and conhadictions and meanings. At first. because b has no eyes. n7e Book ofLetfen...... 7AeAIefiBeit. f I am the all-devouring one Whereunto all things return. the outside letters spell "mouth" (fib).PEH $I may be an eye which has no mouth. nothing is simple.

It is very important to avoid extending the bottom horizontal stroke (D to E) beyond the point (C). Then a Yod is added which begins at the bottom (F) of the left upper stroke (A to B) and ends at the point ((3). . This is not an "enclosed" letter. unlike '." and D to "the mouth as the organ of speech?" Words that originate in the mouth can never protect. Make sure to leave a gap between the points (G and E).letter D represents a spiritual quality (wisdom) contained within the proper vessel for its practical realization. and only exhibit the negative side of Mars. aggression. which stands for "hand" indicating power and possession. which result through mental or physical efforts. Ihe Wisdomin the Hebrew &habet. It also denotes productivity and accomplishment.. Rabbi K d i a Drawing the Peh The letter begins with a shortened Resh (A to B to C). A wide horizontal stroke is added at the base (D to E). Rabbi Munk Why is the letter R assigned to "the function of speech. then descends to the point (C). Simu/e Stories Fmm the Heart. Words that originate from the Divine use the mouth to excite grace.

. a 1above and a t below the line on the left. into a physical body.QOPH The ancient form o the letter P f looks like a knot tied in a cord. The W o God hovers above the soul in its source. above the descending t. as an aura. The 1hovers. so that he can join himself to his Creator. .P is one o the letters f made by two marks. 7he Book o Tokem.. i%e Book o L t e s Rabbi Kushner f etr. is the l other.Paul F d e r f Case The bottom o the P is a man f D calling "Holy" ( t ttP) Kadosh. and decrees i f upon it to descend.. jrhe AiefiBeit. The soul's mission below requires it to become totally involved in the process o the rectification. The top line. [Note: the letter 3 is assigned to the Corporeal Intelligence. clarification. The lower mark o the P f is man calling God. With the upper mark of the P HE whispers vey softly to see if you are really listening.] Two letters combine to form the 3. against its own initial will. is the Holy One. of its f body and "portion" in the world. Rabbi Ginsb& . sheltering and reaching down.

Then an elongated stroke is added from point (E) to point (F).The form of the letter 3 can be considered as made from the combination of a 1and a 3. k Rabbi M i a Drawing the Qoph Qoph begins with a inwardly curved Resh (A to B to C to D). . but does not extend as far as the Final Kaph. This shows that man is linked to Divine Law on both the physical and spiritual levels. S h ~ SforitsFmm fhe H&. Peh or Tzaddi. This stroke descends below the common margin.

It has a perfectly flat base. Important Note: Like Samekh. There i s no curve at the right bottom of the Mem Final. unlike the Samekh. It then moves with the widened edge of the pen to (D). Please note that the point (E) actually touches the bottom edge of the top of the letter. Mem Final is an enclosed letter. The base of the letter moves t o the point (D). then ascends in a narrower form t o (E). .Drawing the Mem Final The final form of the letter Mem begins with a Resh (A t o B t o C).

This small "tongue" is vitally needed in order to distinguish the final Peh from the final Kaph. Note that (C) is below the common bottom margin. . Recall that the letter Peh has a Yod like form at the center left of the letter.Drawing the Peh Final The Peh final is an downward extended Resh that is drawn from (A) to (B) t o (C). The final form of Peh also has a Yod-like form similarly positioned (D to E).

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Tav. . this group has an upper stroke that extends beyond the right vertical strokes. Heh and Kaph Final Unlike the previous family of letters. Venus is a wonderful lover. Without it. Cheth. That extension is crucial for recognition.Family IV: Daleth. a Daleth becomes a Resh. but don't upset her by mistaking her for the Sun.

and mn to the herd to select a calf for the meal (Genesis 18). 7heBook ofLetters.L.. a man bent over. Munk Look closely at i f 3. ran to welcome them. and then l into a i . The 3 transforms into a into a 7. when he saw the three angels in human guise approaching him. in the direction of 3? To teach us that the poor man.DALETH The f . and then a window? A camel is indisputably a means of exchange which cannot do other than . receives charity from the rich man. How can a camel become a door. Rabbi Ginsburgh And why does the roof of the f extend backwards a little to the right. must make himself available to the 3. Rabbi Lawrence Kushner [It is] the way of Abraham who. the face of f is turned away--teaching that charity must be given in secret. symboliies the state of mind of bite/." &Alef Beit. l Serious students are referred to The Bahir. Rabbi M. 7he Wkdomin h e Hebrewhhabet. Nevertheless.. The word n $ f means "door. the 3. hastened to ask Samh to bake cakes." The door stands in the opening o the house. 1. the poor man. 7.The form of f the 7. "self-nullification. the one who would lend him money.lvtb..The deeds of the righteous are always performed expeditiously.

a Drawing the Daleth The first stroke is an extended Yod with a rounded right to side (A to B).produce opportunity for those whose imaginations are fertile. The extended Yod (A to B) touches the right margin. thus enriching eveyone's view of the world. Sirn~k Stories Fmrn the H & h b b i W e . Then a vertical line is drawn from (C) the bottom margin (D). The beginning of the descending line (C) is inside the right margin. .

It possess nothing of its own (7) and completes the nine "vessel" letters beginning with 3. 7he Tarot. is actually the f stamp and seal of all the previous letters. with the liberating power of change. Hence. human imagination is in kind. Paul Foster Case A representing a signature. the same as the universal imagemaking power. pledge.Paul Foster Case . The letter n therefore indicates the final seal and witness to the completion of the Great Work of liberation. resembles a stamp or seal. 3.. the last o all the letters o the Alef-Beit.Rabbi G i h s b d The letter n is the seal of cosmic administration because it combines the imaginative powers of subconsciousness. s and so on. Rabbi M i a All form is limitation of the infinite energy of the Life Power.. formed by joining a 7 to a 3. n implies security. guaranty. Every act of human imagination is really a particular expression through a personal center of this imagemaking power of the Universal Mind. 73e True and Invisble Rosicrucian Order. Sim~Ie Stories from fie Heart.The f letter itself. 7heAlef-Beit. The primary cause of such limitation is the image-making power of the Universal Mind. A signature is what makes business instruments valid. though not in degree. 7.TAV The h.

A descending vertical stroke (E t o F) is drawn on the left margin of the letter. Then a vertical line is drawn from (C) t o the bottom margin (D). .Drawing the Tav The first stroke is an extended Yod with a rounded right side (A to B). This part of the letter is the same as a Daleth. The beginning of the descending line (C) is inside the right margin. The point (E) begins inside the extended Yod (A to B). The descending vertical stroke (E to F) widens into a "foot" or Yod at its base. The extended Yod (A t o B) touches the right margin.

. the sushiner. Rabbi Munk in The letter h is similar in shape to the 8. symboliied by 37'7..The form of the letter ll resembles a gateway. f and active enterprise.ever since man was banished from Eden. One enters into an inner realm or chamber. a deeper state of awareness.] 73eAlef-Beit. o the world...except that the upper opening is closed. be strong! Learn from . annarnent 7he W ~ d o m the Hebrew Alphabet. This suggests that if a person becomes steeped in sin and impurity. Through a gateway one enters and exits. Rabbi Matiiyahu Glazerson At the end of a book of the Torah and at the beginning of something difficult we say C m ht3. infused with the light of one's new experience. the "fear of God" should be upon him. a truer level of experience. he has had to balance two 7's. stable state of existence.a person should always be in awe of his Creator.Rabbi G h b & The n consists of two spear shaped 7's side by side with a roof over them.. One exits to return to one's previous. [Also see Rabbi Ginsburgh's statement on the letter B. this can lead to the closing of the door to repentance .. Letters ofFire. passive trust in It.

Rabbi K w h Drawing the Cheth The first stroke is an extended Yod with a rounded right side (A to B).what has gone before that strength is not o might and force but f of endurance and balance. The point (E) begins inside the extended Yod (A to B). k Book ofLetters. So far the letter is shaped exactly like Daleth A descending vertical stroke (E to F) is drawn on the left margin of the letter. The beginning of the descending line (C) is inside the right margin. Then a vertical line is drawn from (C) t o the bottom margin (D). . The extended Yod (A to B) touches the right margin.

HEH
The three lines of the fl correspond to the three dimensions of physical reality: breadth, height and depth.. .The experience o depth, the f dimension," on our physical plane of normative consciousness, should remind us that even in our physical world there is a dimension of reality beyond our initial sensory perception.
lche Alef Beit, Rabbi Ginsburgh

The looks like a lobby with three walls, but with one side completely open. This indicates that God allows man free choice. He is free to obey or diibey God's will, but if he chooses to leave the safety o the Torah's spiritual and m o d boundaries, he loses f his foothold and slips, as it were, through the open space of the ; into the abyss...however, I symbolizes God's readiness to forgive...A small opening is left in the top left leg of the fl symbolizing that a space always remains through which a repentant sinner can return.
7he Wisdomin theHebrew Alphabet, Rabbi M.L. Munk

While everyone can say, "I am present", not everyone can say '2 ilHemi.( "Here I am." For to answer '323 means that you no i, longer belong to yourself. To answer '22 fl means that you give the i7 of your being over to the ONE who calls. That is why i7 is the letter most often linked with God's name.
l h Book o Lefte~, f Rabbi Laurence Kwhner

Drawing the Heh
The first stroke is an extended Yod with a rounded right side (A to B). Then a vertical line is drawn from (C) to the bottom margin (D). This is just like a Daleth. The beginning of the descending line (C) is inside the right margin. The extended Yod (A to B) touches the right margin.
A short descending vertical stroke (E to F) is drawn on the left margin of the letter. The point (E) does not touch the bottom of the extended Yod (A to B).

Drawing the Kaph Final
The first stroke is an extended Yod with a rounded right side (A to B). Then a vertical line is drawn from (C) t o (D).
The beginning of the descending line (C) is inside the right margin. The extended Yod (A to B) touches the right margin. The descending line (C to D) reaches below the bottom margin.

. Tzaddi. and Shin This family of letters is unique in that each has its own peculiarities. Although they are not frequently confused with each other. They are a blend of several other letters. they are the most difficult for the beginning student to draw.Family V: Aleph. Mem. Ayin.

"the world and all its fullness were created for the Torah alone. your God. f 1 ch .ALEPH The union of higher reality. Rabbi Mtzchak Ghb& For 26 generations the N complained before God: "I am the first of the letters yet You didn't create Your world with me!" "Don't worry". the second letter of the Hebrew Alphabet. and not with the N? Because the H was granted a far nobler and important task. by means of the connecting I." Rabbi Hazar bar Abina in Rabbi Aha Is name Rabbi Laumme Kushnerb The Book ofLeite~ Why does the Torah begin with the letter 2 . of Torah (the law). the upper ' with the lower reality. the lower 9. . Rabbi Benjamin B e . the firstword I say will begin with you. me M B e i t . me Set& o Hebrew Wods. is the ultimate secret of the letter 8. It would begin the Ten Commandments as the opening letter of the word ' 2 #--I am 3 the Lord. said God. Tomomw when I come to give My Torah at Sinai.

the letter Aleph is composed of two Yod-like forms (A to B and C to D) and a transverse Vav-like form (E to F). .Drawing the Aleph As Rabbi Ginsburgh says. The upper Yod has almost exactly the same shape as a regular Yod. whereas the lower one looks like it has "flowed into" its shape from a point (C) on the transverse Vav (E to F).

73eAlefBeit. Rabbi Kushner f The form of the ft.. It is an eye.. W e b FOES The name of the letter 1'9 when rearranged. 7he Book o Left-.AYIN Evgr stroke in the Torah. 1 ft .Rabbi Ginsbugh Those who believe that their eyes ( $2) present all of reality are truly impoverished. . The letter comes after D in the alphabet. even the tiniest. the perfectly humble one (Moses) integrating the secrets of the Law. Now try to see. 7he Idiot Speaks. the letter p. It only sees. Open your mouth. the humble one receiving insight into the Law.. They may become wealthy only by realizing their only support is from the Divine (0) acting (3) that and on knowledge. the form of the $2 depicts two eyes with connecting "optic nerves" entering the brain. the consummated 3--a 3. In addition. enwedged into an elongated 3--is the poor man receiving physical sustenance. In its shape also. with its one curved leg. Close ' your eyes. spells "poor" '3 $2. Rabbi Akiba The letter $2 does not speak. according to the Arizal. are vehicles for teaching us about God. That is the sound of ft . to teach us that a man should "supportn (D) the "poorn ($2) before poverty causes them to fall. The right eye is looking up at D and the left eye down at B.

L e t t e ~fFire. . This stroke does not descend below the margin. Then a broad stroke is made from (C)to (H). it is bending and unstable. Note that the last stroke (C to H) is not horizontal. Rabbi Glazerson o Drawing the Ayin This letter begins with a shortened and curved Zain (A to B and C to D). A shortened and curved Vav is then drawn from (E) to (F).suggests a person who has no firm basis.

which are present simultaneously in all created reality. The "Just Man" or "Righteous One" (P9tX) Tzadik. Letten o ! = Rabbi GIazemn f?. The Talmud observes that the bent 2 has already taught us the l s o o humbleness and asks why this lesson need be repeated esn f with the X? The Talmud answers: fie writen fom o h e Alephf Beis adds one symbol of humility upon anoher symbol o f .. is the means by which one attains the level of the tzadik." signifying that which draws the fish (2) out of the water (D). foul language. is able to "shape" reality in accordance with his will. pure form.TZADDI The letter X means "fish-hook. The point of the 3. 7he T m t . i'he Ahd-Beit. gossip.. and so on. shapes the f of matter into its intended form. a is enwedged in the upper right side of a bent over f . This is to teach that guarding one's mouth from slander. Pad Foster Cwe In the form of the 3. general In the and the 2 represent the two dimensions of form and matter. the righteous one. in "touch" with the inner. pure form of all reality. Rabbi Ginsbwgh ' The letter P immediately precedes the letter X in the alphabet.

This is a congregation (72 3)Tzibur. Rabbi Munk n No one can be a Tzadikalone. then continues with a broad flat stroke from (C) to (D). There must be at least nine others. Deeds o giving (. We are able to rise only by binding ourselves with others who 3 could never make it alone. Rabbi Kushner f Drawing the Tzaddi Tzaddi resembles its meaning--fish hook. ?he Wdom i theHebrew Abhabet. .131X) ts'daka are the only reason for a f congregation. It begins with a slanting Vav (A to B) that widens as it descends.humiJty to emphasize the importance of fiis hiit This teaches hiat fie To& wasgiven amid verygreat humi/i&. 'Ihe Book o Leffers. An abbreviated Zain is added (E to F and C to H).

mother. On the left is a . resembles a womb.. the symbol of mother nature. Rosh Mifinstates that the letter b consists of two parts. openly revealed glory of God's actions." represents I in its form as well as its name f various bodies o water. in the words o King David: For a//is f o You and fmm your hand it f rm is given.it . This is after she ascends in aspiration--the secret of the letter $--to receive from Adam the seed of life. the word PN. also means "womb.. In mast languages t3 is the basic sound of "mother.MEM The b . (I Chronicles 29:14) E5e Wisdom in the f f e b m ~ h a b e t a b Munk Rbi . Figuratively. D points upward to indicate God's sovereignty over us." In general." is the womb of all (manifest) existence." Its essential consonant is the letter 23." In Hebrew. Eve. Rabbi Ginsburgh The open D points to the obvious.these two letters allude to building and productivity. On the right is a curved component msembling the letters 2 and 2. whose name's primary meaning is "water.. "the mother of all life. Ibe M-Beit. while expressing through its otherwise bent posture our humble recognition of His Mercy. as if to say. which for the fetus is a "fountain of life.

. A wide flat stroke is then made along the base from (E to F). A space is left between the points (6) and (F). Mem is not an enclosed letter. Rabbi Glazerson Drawing the Mem The letter begins with a curved Vav (A t o B). Thus the letter b symbolizes constructive action and life. Leftas of Em. Then the flat edge of the pen is used t o draw a narrowing curved stroke from (C) t o (D). which is the letter of life.vertical stroke consisting of the letter 1.

. ' i'he M-Beit Rabbi G i n s b e The form of the letter W reminds one of a mouth fl of teeth.SHIN The W is composed of three l's.. The form of W symbolizes symmetry at all levels." The three branches represent the three aspects of the truth about man: (1)he possesses a spiritual soul (Nehamah). as does its In phonetic sound . f l Idiot Speaks. the letter W is called "the letter of truth... Rabbi Glazeson .Cdeb FoLis k HE caused the letter E? to reign in fire. the Zohar.. Issac to the left (Gebumh) and Jacob in the middle (Tiphareth). the W is referred to as the "letter o the fathers. rising from a common base-point. each with a on its top. It is thus the higher octave o what is represented by D. shape resembles Its flames of fire. ul Unlike the letter D which is turned to eat whatever it finds on its level. According to the Zohar." The three f ascending 7's correspond to the three patriarchs. Abmham to the right (Chesed). (2) a spirit (Ruach). the W is turned upwards to receive nourishment from on high. Letters of Fire.and (3)bodily soul (Nefesh).

as is this one whose name is W. Then draw a curved Vav from (F) to (C). It is also two Zains and a Vav connected at the base. Listen to me and I will o advise you. He said.A King had a number of dwellings. Extend the base from (D) to (E). "God is a man (at?') of war?" Do not ask about something that is s simple.The form of the E?depicts natural phenomena that seem to surge heavenward. He said. This allows easy insertion of the slanted Zain which i s added to complete the letter. 7 7 Wisdomi the H e b m Abhabet. Ti one whose name is is also hi good. and a bed of flowers growing upward. "I will give my son this dwelling whose name is kt. a bonfire with its flames shooting high. and he gave each one a name. Take care to leave adequate space between the top of the original Zain and the top of the Vav. o These include a tree with its branches stretching to the sky. and out of them he made a single name and a single house.. as if beseeching God fr help and sustenance. Begin by drawing a Zain on the left margin (A to B and C to D)." Drawing the Shin The Shin i s three Yods in a boat. Some Qabalistic traditions teach that perfection comes or i s represented by a four armed Shin.n What did he do then? He gathered all three together. . The last segment of the letter i s a Zain drawn from (H) to (I) from and 0)t o (K). "How long will you continue to m n m l your meaning?" The other replied: "My son.. One was better than the other. n is the head. longing to receive sustenance from above. is second to it. Rabbi Munk ~ n What is the meaning of the vetse. W includes all the world.

.

Arbeny's Classics of Perxian Literature. Simule Stories From the H a t Unpublished p t h u m o u s manuscript. 1946.. Ginsburgh. Vermont. Rabbi Philo. 1983. The Book of Letters (Sefer Otivotl A Mystical Alef-Bait. Liber Travail. Gerona. er. 1991. 1934. 1981. Jason Amrwn. New Jersey 07647. Kushner. Paul Fcater. 5105 North Figueroa Street. The Tarot Keu to the Wisdom of the Aws* 1947. University Books. HaKana. i m Philipp Feldheirn. e Glruorsg Rabbi Mt uLaths of Ere. Spring Valley. California 90W2. Case. W 6 0 . Rabbi Lawrence. Inc. Buildem of the Adytum. 1135. G. The Alef-Beit.. 1976. Los Angeles. Rabbi Yikchak. The T u and Invisible Rosicrucian Order. Michael L. California 90042. 230 Livingston St. Meshorah Publications. 1825 edition according to D e Idiot Sueaks. Rabb'~ to Jewish Deed and Thought. 1979 edition. The Sefer Yetzimh (Commentaries). Mead. Swhir Esh. New J w 07647. Spain. Samuel Weiser. The Bal& 1176.. Cakb. Kaplan. lnc. LN. Rabbi Nehuniah ben. origin unverified. Samuel Weiser.RS. 1990. Olse. California 90042.'Iheldiot S~eaks. Woodstock. Bmoklyn. Rabbi Core. M i a . Rabbi Aryeh. Beruit. Jewish Thought Revealed through the Hebrew Letters. The W i o m in the Hebrew A l h b e t The Sacred Letters as a Guide Munk.Paul Foster.IX10.Hyde Park. An otdcure Sufi monograph. New York 10977. Northvale. Inc. a . Jason Amnson. Inc. 1905. 200 Airport Executive Park..LosAngeles. 5105 North FigStreet. Buildets of the Adytum. York Beach. Putported manumipt fmm Judaica Librav.Bibliography Blech.. York Beach. 230 Livingston St. XL30.. Jerusalem. Mystical Imighk into the Hebtew Language. Rabbi Benjamin. 1991. Case.Paul Foster. Ltd. Questionable source. 4401 Second Avenue. Vol. George Allen and Unwin. Jewish Lights Publications. New York Folk. Box 612. London. The Book of Tokens.Los Angles. Quotation traceable to Frasmentr of a Faith Fomotten. Heveer. re 5105 North Figueroa Street.. Maine 03910. Box 612.Buildem of the Adytum. Museum Street. The Secrek of Hebrew Won& 1991. Inc. See AJ. Pharos. Rabbi Elazar bar Abina in Rabbi Aha's name -Rabbi Pinhas of KO& . Vol. Codex Obliqitas. Northvale. Maine 03910. 1958.

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