Shomer Emunim #20-21

5 Feb
From this section onward, the translation is by;
The Horonsteipler Rav; Rabbi Mordechai Twerski, Shlita,
edited & transcribed by his talmid, Shaul Taub.
Brackets are notes from Rabbi Twerski, Braces are editors’ notes.

Shomer Emunim #20-21  


She’altiel: Well spoken. You have correctly put the right content to that which is called the stories of the Torah, as is written regarding them; that they were written in such a way as to hint to secrets that are hidden within them. But I still don’t see clearly how the Mekubalim derive many hidden deep secrets of the Torah by combining words and/or punctuations and by interchanging letters of the words and rearranging them in various ways by way of [encryption systems known as] “Alpha-Betas”. Acronyms, the end-letters of words, numerical calculations known as Gematrios, etc. I find it hard to believe that the Torah needs to be explained and understood through these methods.

 Not only that, but also when it comes to Gematrios, if the calculation of the Gematria doesn’t add up to a sensible result; they’ll count the word {or each word} as one, or sometimes they’ll add the amount of letters in the word {or words} to the calculation. [Thereby seemingly fabricating a calculation that would produce a number to fit the circumstances.] If the Torah wanted it to be a specific number, why wouldn’t it simply list the number precisely?

 Yehoyada: It appears to me that had you been around when Daniel explained the dream to Belshatzar: “This is what was written on the wall (in your dream): “Mene mene tekel ufarsin.”” (Daniel 5:25) [which doesn’t have a translation], you would have said that Daniel was being deceitful, and you would have nullified his interpretation, because according to you, his interpretation cannot be correct. Why would Hashem want him to interpret it by the following procedure: Those words [“Mene mene tekel ufarsin.”] are rearrangements of the letters: Mem-mem-tof-vov-samach, Nun-nun-kof-peh-yud, Alef-alef-lamed-resh-nun {forward sequential acronyms, middle letters, then end letters (+ dividing the last word into two, making it into two words; “ufar sin”)}; or another rearrangement of the letters would be: {reading each word backwards;} Aleph-nun-mem, Aleph-nun-mem, Lamed-kuf-tof, Nun-yud-samach-resh-peh-vov; as is explained in Mesechta Sanhedrin, page 22A.

 [The Gemara there explains how Daniel interpreted those words prophetically; by exchanging and rearranging the words and letters. The Gemara also explains the rearrangement as well. I.e., you don’t need to go to Kabbala to know that these systems exist. These are part of Niglah. These are things that are found in the Gemara. These are encryption systems of the Torah.] The fact is that these methods have been accepted, and some of them are even mentioned in the Gemara such as the Alpha-Betas {encryption systems known as} “At-bash” (aleph-tof, beis-shin, etc.) [Right-left over left-to-right], “Achas-bata” (aleph-ches-samach, beis-tes-ayin, etc.) [Every 8th letter, the 3 letters can be substituted for each other], and “Al-bam” (aleph-lamed, beis-mem, etc.). [These are some legitimate encryption systems that are discussed] in Mesechta Shabbos 104A. Through this Gemara, Chazal teach us that the word “Ach” (aleph-chaf) in the Possuk: “Ach bayom harishon tashbisu”, can be exchanged through the encryption system of “Achas-bata”; as “Chatz” (ches-tzadik). Rashi, in Mesechta Pesachim 5A (beginning words: “Ach Chalak”) explains [that it means “Chatz” or “Chatzi”, meaning “Half” the day]. In Mesechta Succah 52B, the Gemara explains that by using the Alpha Beta {encryption system known as} “At-bach” (aleph-tof, beis-ches, etc.), they deduce that the word “Manon” means “Sahada”. [From the Possuk in Mishlei 29:21; “Mefanek mino’ar avdoy v’achariso yihyeh manon = “One that treats his young servant too delicately, ultimately will have his servant abandon his master”. “Manon” means “he’ll abandon him”, and R’ Chiya recalculates that word (via “At-bach”) to “Sahada”, meaning to “testify against him”. Rashi explains the entire calculation.]

As another example; in the 4th Perek of Mesechta Kedushin (71A), a lengthy explanation is given on Hashem’s 42-letter name, which one who knows it has a great advantage, can also be learned out from the first Psukim of Parshas Bereshis, {from the Bais in the word “Bereshis”} until the Bais of the word “Vavohu”, by interchanging the letters via the known and accepted Alpha-Beta systems. If you wish to, you can research these things in the Sefer “Pardes [Rimonim]”, Gate 21, Perek 13. [As revealed in “Anna Beko’ach”, which is the 42-letter name of Hashem spelled out by 7 sets of 6 acronyms. In addition, the Shem Hashem of Y”KVK can be spelled out in Gematria as Yud-vov-daled (20), Heh (5), Vov-vov (12), Heh (5) = 20+5+12+5 = 42. Another Shem Hashem of “Mah” (Mem-Heh) can be calculated as 45, by adding up Y”KVK in a different fashion: Yud-vov-daled (20), Heh-aleph (6), Vov-aleph-vov (13), Heh-aleph (6) = 20+5+12+5 = 45.]

Another example is with regards to the 72-letter name of Hashem that can be derived from the 3 Pesukim [that are written right before Kriyas Yam Suf] (Shemos 14:19-21) that begin with the words “Vayisa”, “Vayavo” and “Vayet”. [Each one of those Pesukim have exactly 72 letters.] You take one letter from each Possuk and you attach it to one letter [of each other Possuk]. [You take the 1st letter of each Possuk and combine them, then the 2nd letter of each Possuk and combine them, and then the 3rd letter of each Possuk and combine them, except that the 2nd Possuk is written backwards, as in “At-bash”. I.e., you take the 2nd Possuk, and place it backwards. So it’s really the 1st letter of the 1st Possuk, attached to last letter of the 2nd Possuk, attached to the 1st letter of the 3rdPossuk. Then you take the 2nd letter of the 1st Possuk, attach it to the 2nd-to-last letter of the 2nd Possuk, and attach that to the 2nd letter of the 3rd Possuk. Etc. etc.]

In Mesechta Berachos 55A it says: “Betzalel [when he made the Mishkan] knew how to combine the letters that Hashem used to create Heaven and Earth.” [The construction of the Mishkan was in itself miraculous.] And in the Medrash on Tehilim, Psalm 3, it says: “The sections of Torah {known as “Parshiyos”} are not listed in the correct order, because had it all been given in the correct sequence [and people knew how to read it the right way], then anyone would know how to use the words of the Torah to bring dead people back to life.” Therefore the correct sequence of the Torah remains hidden. As is written (Yeshayah 44:7) “Who will be like me, who knows how to read and tell over, and to explain to me the names of the peoples of the world.” [Which is a Possuk that Chazal say that if one knows how to read the Torah the right way, you can revive the dead.] Additionally, it says (in Medrash Tanchumah, Parshas Ekev, Perek 2): “The paths of life, lest you misuse them, the sweetness of its paths are not known.” (Mishlei 5:6). [So Chazal explain that Possuk to mean:] “The pathways of the Torah are intertwined, because if people knew the correct sequence of how these should be read, they would know how to heal the sick and to bring the dead back to life.”

There are also some additional quotes from Chazal that clearly show that [the Torah HAD to hide the secrets through various different forms of cloaking] this is the way of the Torah; to hint to the secrets using these pathways. Generally speaking, it could also be said (Zohar, on Parshas Mishpatim 124A) [Also Ramban, beginning of Parshas Bereshis] that the entire Torah is really names of Hashem. [So what Yehoyada is really saying, is that if you have a problem with the Gematrios, and the way it’s hidden, you should understand that it was done that way intentionally! To hide it from the hands of some people who would misuse it. Certain things were not meant to be understood by everybody.]

And as to what you said that you find it hard to believe that the Torah needs to be explained and understood through these methods, don’t be so amazed at the intent over here, because anyone that is an expert, and understands the essence of the secrets of the Torah, will understand truthfully that it HAD to be this way, and that each subject in the Torah HAD to be written the way it is. {Witness Rabbi Eliyahu Rips’ “The Torah codes”.} Some secrets are apparent by words that are written in Pesukim of the Torah exactly the way they’re written, some secrets we learn out from acronyms of words, some from the end-letters of words straightforward and sometimes backwards, sometimes through Gematrios, and there are some secrets that are derived by rearranging letters via various different forms of Alpha-Betas. Each secret has its own unique encryption.

The same goes for the various Gematrios. There’s a difference when you have a precise calculation, or if it’s a calculation where you need to add on the sum total of the letters of the words, because that which is added on by that extra calculation could not be understood if you use a straight precise calculation. These things are known to anyone that has studied this subject intensely and understands that they are all based on solid foundations and reasons.

If these ways seem to be strange to the fool that has never tasted the sweetness of the wisdom of the Torah, then what can we do for him? Let him study and become wise. [If you didn’t learn them, then of course it would look strange.] “The pathways of Hashem are straight, the righteous will follow them, but sinners will trip over them.” (Hoshea 14:10)

Copyright © 2015 Shaul Taub

4 Responses to “Shomer Emunim #20-21”

  1. raphaelergas February 6, 2015 at 4:27 am #

    B”H – Rav Shaul Taub Congratulation for your good work. Thank you very much for your email with the Shomer Emunim Chapters English translation. Please, keep informing me and also how to get in touch with you to discuss other books translations of my ancestor Joseph Ben Emmanuel. ( “Tokaḥat Megullah” “Ha-Ẓad Naḥash” “Mebo Petaḥim” “Dibre Yosef” “Minḥat Yosef” Wishing you Shabbat Shalom ! Raphael Ergas

  2. Raphael Ergas February 6, 2015 at 4:46 am #

    Excellent Work Rav Shaul – Thank you

    • Shaul Taub February 7, 2015 at 8:32 pm #

      Thank you so much, Reb Raphael, for your kind & encouraging words. Let’s talk about other book translations when I finish this one. I will try my best, with Hashem and Rabbi Twerski’s help, to complete the translation of this Sefer in this lifetime. If not, …. not to worry… there’s always next Gilgul. 🙂

    • Mr. Bookman February 8, 2015 at 10:38 am #

      lol shaul
      raphael, please let the word out to any friends you think would be interested too!

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