Sha'arei Orah Gates of Light

Excerpts from Sha'arei Orah, by Rabbi Joseph Gikatilla z"l, translated by Tim Woodruff © 2003, all rights reserved.

The true definition of the traditional covenant is that the one who wishes to achieve his desires regarding the Holy One, Blessed be He, is the one who exerts himself with all his power to grasp the meaning of each and every Name of these Holy Names that are mentioned in the Torah. For example: Ehyeh is Keter Elyon; Yah is Hokhmah; YHVH is Binah; Adonai is A'teret; El is Hesed; Eloah is Tifereth; Elohim is Pachad; Shaddai is Yesod; Tzevaoth is Netzach and Hod. One must know and understand that all of these Names are like keys to everything that one needs for anything in the world. When one meditates upon these Names, he will find that all of the Torah and the Commandments depend upon them. And when one knows the meaning of all of these Names, he will realize and know the greatness of "He Who spoke, and the world came into being." One will fear and be in awe of Him, and he will long for and yearn and eagerly desire to cleave to Him through the knowledge of His Names, may He be blessed. Then he will be near the L-RD, and his prayer will be received. Regarding this it is written, "I will keep him safe, for he knows My Name; he shall call upon me, and I will answer him" [Tehillim 91:14-15]. The text does not say, "I will keep him safe because he mentions My Name," rather, "because he knows My Name." Knowledge is essential. After this, "he shall call upon me, and I will answer him," saying that when one needs to speak, he will focus his intention on that Name upon which the need depends, then "I will answer him."

Gate 1
[Malkhuth ] "O Lord [Adonai], open my lips and let my mouth give You praise." (Psalms 51:17)

Adonai (L-rd) Berakhah (Blessing) Bereikhah (Pool, Receptacle) Be'er (Well) Be'er Sheva (Well of Seven, Seventh Well) Yam (Sea) Yam HaHokhmah (Sea of Wisdom) Kol (All) Even (Stone) Even HaRoshah (Cornerstone) Even Sappir (Sapphire Stone) Rosh Pinah (Chief Cornerstone) Beth HaMikdash (The Holy Temple) Shekhinah (Dweller, Immanent Presence) Ohel Moed (Tent of Meeting) Tzedek (Righteousness) Elohim (G-d) Cherev Nokemet Nakam Brit (The Sword that Avenges the Covenant) Ani (I) Malkuth (Kingdom) Malkhuth Beth David (Kingdom of the House of David) Nesher (Eagle) Mikveh HaMayim (Pool of Water) Yabashah (Dry Land) Tefillin Shel Yad (Phylacteries of the Hand) Koh (Thus) Petach Eynayim (Entrance to Eyes) Etz HaDa'ath (Tree of Knowledge) Eretz HaChayyim (The Land of Life) Sefer HaChayyim (The Book of Life) Zot (This) Amirah (Saying, Utterance) Shaddai (Almighty) Heh Acharonah Shel Shem (Final Heh of the Name) Knesset Yisrael (Community of Israel) Eretz Yisrael (Land of Israel) -

Kallah (Bride) Yerushalayim (Jerusalem) Gan (Garden) Hekhal (Palace) Aron (Ark) Torah SheBa'al Peh (Oral Torah) Rachel (Rachel, the Matriarch) Mizbeach (Altar) Bath (Daughter) Ishah (Wife) Shemittah (Sabbatical Year, the Seventh Year) Nun Kefufah (Bent Nun) Mitzvah (Commandment) E'th (Time, Season) Shamor (Keep, Guard) Tefillah (Prayer) -

Gate 2
[Yesod ] "My soul thirsts for God, the living God [El Chai]; O when will I come to appear before God?" (Psalms 42:3) El Chai (Living G-d) Elohim Chayyim (Living G-d) El Shaddai (Almighty G-d) Makor Mayim Chayyim (Fount of Living Waters) Tzaddik (Righteous One) Tov (Good) Sekkhel Tov (Good Understanding) Shalom (Peace) Zikharon (Memory, Remembrance) Zakhor (Remember) Shabbat (Sabbath, Rested) Menuchah (Resting Place) Yesod (Foundation) Yesod Olam (Foundation of the World) -

Goel (Redeemer) HaMalakh HaGoel (The Redeeming Angel) Brit (Covenant) Brit Milah (Covenant of Circumcision) Oth (Sign) Shevuah (Oath) Ki Tov (It Was Good) Chok (Decree) Har (Mountain) Har Tzion (Mount Zion) Tzion (Zion) Kol (All) Avir Ya'akov (Mighty One of Jacob) Avir Yisrael (Mighty One of Israel) Hesed Tachton (Lower Mercy) Hasdei David HaNe'emanim (The Faithful Mercies of David) Har HaKodesh (The Holy Mountain) HaHar HaTov (The Good Mountain) Katzeh HaTachton Shel Vav (The Lower End of the Vav) Chai HaOlamim (The Life of Worlds) Milah (Circumcision) Brit HaKesheth (Covenant of the Rainbow) Ben (Son) Yod Ketanah (Small Yod) Yod Tachtonah (Lower Yod) Shevarim (Broken Sounds of the Shofar) Dar (Dweller) -

Gates 3 and 4
[Hod and Netzach ] "O Lord, God of Hosts [YHVH Elohim Tzevaoth], hear my prayer; listen, O Lord of Jacob. Selah." (Psalms 84:9) "O God of Hosts [Elohim Tzevaoth], restore us; cause Your face to shine, and we will be saved." (Psalms 80:8)

"The Lord of Hosts [YHVH Tzevaoth] is with us. The God of Jacob is our high tower. Selah." (Psalms 46:8) Elohim Tzevaoth (G-d of Hosts) YHVH Tzevaoth (L-RD of Hosts) Hod (Majesty, Glory) Hodaoth (Thanksgiving) Boaz (Left Pillar in the Holy Temple) Yakin (Right Pillar in the Holy Temple) Shechakim (Skies) Etzem HaShamayim (The Essence of Heaven) Makom HaEtzah (The Place of Counsel) Netzach (Victory) Netzachim (Victories, Eternity) El Emunah (Faithful G-d) Regel Yamin (Right Leg) Regel Semol (Left Leg) Shokayyim (Legs, Thighs) Birkkayim (Knees) Vav Shel Shem (Vav of the Name) Shevarim (Interpretations of Dreams) -

Gate 5
[Tifereth ] "Hear my prayer O Lord [YHVH]; give ear to my cry; do not disregard my tears; for like all my forebears I am an alien resident with You." (Psalms 39:12) YHVH (HaShem) YHVH Elohim (L-RD G-d) Kav HaEmtza'i (Central Line) Etz HaChayyim (The Tree of Life) Torah SheVaketav (The Written Torah) Emet (Truth) Tifereth (Beauty) Da'ath (Knowledge) Nora (Awesome) -

Mishpat (Judgment) Atah (You) Ya'akov (Jacob) Yisrael (Israel) Midat Yom (Measure of a Day) Briach HaTikhun (Central Pillar) Av Yisrael (Father Israel) Anavah (Humble One) Adir (Mighty One) Shalom (Peace) Shlemah (Complete, Whole) Shlishi (Third) Shamayim (Heavens) Ish Tam (Perfect Man, Mild Man) HaKadosh Barukh Hu (The Holy One, Blessed be He) Ze'ir Anpin (Small Countenance) Rachamim (Compassion) Zakhar (Male) Moshe (Moses) Chalav (Milk) Devash (Honey) Tzur (Rock) Yom (Day) Menorah (Candelabrum) Yerach (Month) Anokhi (I) Adam (Man) Vav Shel Shem (Vav of the Name) Tefillin Shel Rosh (Phylacteries of the Head) Sefer Torah (Torah Scroll) Chen (Grace) Dibbur (Speech) Rakia' (Firmament) Chut HaShidrah (Spinal Cord) Ben (Son) Tekia'th Shofar (Simple Blast on the Shofar) Kol Gadol (Great Voice) -

Gate 6
[Gevurah ] "O God [Elohim], hear my prayer, listen to what my mouth says." (Psalms 54:4) Elohim (G-d) Gevurah (Strength) Beth Din Shel Ma'aleh (The Heavenly Court) Zekhut (Merit) Tzafon (North) Yad Kahah (Restraining Hand) Midath HaDin HaKasheh (Attribute of Harsh Judgment) Beth Din HaE'lyon (The Supernal Court) Pachad (Fear) Yitzchak (Isaac) Pachad Yitzchak (Fearsome Isaac) HaEsh HaGedolah (The Great Fire) Esh Ochlah (Consuming Fire) Memshalah (Dominion, Government) Din (Judgment) Semol (Left) Zahav (Gold) Lechem (Bread) Malach (Salt) Nachash (Serpent) Yayin (Wine) Choshekh (Darkness) Laylah (Night) A'nan (Dark Cloud) A'rafel (Thick-Darkness) Basar (Meat, Flesh) Devorah (Bee) Soleth (Flour) Shulchan (Table) Shemesh (Sun) Esh (Fire) -

Sinai (Mount Sinai) Mishpat (Justice) Even (Stone) Yad (Hand) Mizbeach HaNechsheth (The Brass Altar) Adamah (Ground) Elohim Emet (G-d of Truth) Shamayim (Heavens) Admoni (Reddish) Zerua' (Arm) Vav Shel Shem (Vav of the Name) Ben (Son) Shor (Bull) Tzur (Rock) Lishkat HaGazit (Chamber of Hewn Stone) Teru'ah Shofar (Successive Blasts on the Shofar) Yirah (Fear) -

Gate 7
[Hesed ] "And You, O Lord, are a merciful and pardoning God [El], long-suffering and abundant in kindness and truth." (Psalms 86:15) El (G-d) El Elyon (Most High G-d) Chesed (Mercy, Lovingkindness) Chesed Avraham (Lovingkindness of Abraham) Yamin (Right) Kadosh (Holy) Mayim Elyonim (Upper Waters) Adir (Mighty One) Chesed Olam (Eternal Mercy) Shamayim (Heavens) Gedulah (Greatness) Zerua' (Arm) Aryeh (Lion) -

Ben (Son) Vav Shel Shem (Vav of the Name) Eloha (G-d) Eleh (These) Rachum (Merciful) Chanun (Pardoning) Erech Apayim (Long-suffering) Rav Chesed (Abundant in Lovingkindness) -

Gate 8
[Binah ] "The Lord [YHVH, pronounced Elohim] God is my strength, Who makes my legs like the deer's, and lets me stride upon the heights." (Habakkuk 3:19) YHVH (Pronounced as Elohim) Binah (Understanding) Yovel (Jubilee) Teshuvah (Repentance, Return) Tzedek Elyon (Uppermost Righteousness) Be'er Sheva (Well of Seven) Melitz Elyon (Supernal Advocate) Rechovot HaNahar (The River Channels) Levanon (Lebanon) Geulah (Redemption) Heh Rishonah Shel Shem (First Heh of the Name) Socheret (Red Marble, Onyx Stone) Mi (Who) Neder (Vow) Shekhinah Ila'ah (Upper Shekhinah) Makor Chayyim (Source of Life) Kippurim (Atonement) Leah (Leah, the Matriarch) Olam HaBa (The World to Come) Shofar Gadol (The Great Ram's Horn) Gevuroth (Mighty Acts) Tehillah (Praise) -

Em (Mother) Imma (Mother) Em Ila'ah (Upper Mother) Tevunah (Understanding) Even Gedolah (The Great Stone) Yoe'tz (Counsellor) Lashon (Tongue, Language) Peh (Mouth) Pe'er (Tiara, Diadem) Chutma (Nose) Chayyim (Life) Bamatey Aretz (High Places of the Earth) Yam Ila'ah (Upper Sea) -

Gate 9
[Hokhmah ] "From the dire straits I called to the Lord [Yah], answer me with generosity, Lord [Yah]." (Psalms 118:5) Yah (L-rd) Yesh (There Is, Substance) Hokhmah (Wisdom) Ratzon (Will, Desire) O'mek HaMachshavah (The Depth of Thought) O'mek Ram (Deep Height) Yirah (Awe, Fear) Yod Shel Shem (Yod of the Name) Machshavah (Thought) E'den (Paradise, Pleasure) Abba (Father) Av (Father) Pele (Wonder) Pelioth Hokhmah (Wonders of Wisdom) Ta'alumoth Hokhmah (Mysteries of Wisdom) Hokhmah Ila'ah (Upper Wisdom) -

Gate 10
[Kether ] "Who is a God [El] like You, forgiving iniquity and remitting transgression? Who has not maintained His wrath forever, against the remnant of His own people, because He loves Mercy [Chesed]." (Micah 7:18) Ehyeh (I Will Be) Ayin (Nothing) Keter (Crown) Mizrach HaElyon (Upper East) Mazal Elyon (Supernal Configuration) Makor Elyon (Supernal Source) Hesed HaElyon (The Highest Mercy) Makor HaRatzon (The Source of Will, or Desire) Aleph Gedolah (Large Aleph) Chasadim Tovim (Good Mercies) Kedem (Ancient, Before, East) Tal Harmon (Dew of Mount Hermon) Y"G Midoth HaRachamim (The Thirteen Attributes of Mercy) A'yin HaRachamim (Eye of Compassion) Hu (He) Anavah (Humility) Zaken (Elder) Atika Kadisha (Ancient Holy One) Dikna Ila'ah Kadisha (Supernal Holy Beard) Atik Yomin (Ancient of Days) Rosh (Head) Rosh HaLavan (The White Head) Sea'roth HaZaken (The Hairs of the Elder) Nun Peshutah (Simple, Final Nun) Kotzo Shel Yod Shel Shem (Tip of the Yod of the Name) -


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