The Gematria of Gematria

1 10 200 9 40 3
Gematria: 263

Hypertext Hebrew Alphabet | Autiot Gematria | Gematria Links

The Hebrew alphabet is alpha-numeric -- its characters are letter-numbers which combine both quality and quantity in one sign. Rabbis and Biblical commentators have long played games with these letter-numbers, adding up the value of words or phrases and claiming they are somehow connected to other words or phrases with the same values. Regardless of the particular usage, in every case the whole point of "Gematria" is to make a connection between the alpha and the numeric, between meaning and energy, quality and quantity, semantics and syntax and ultimately, between inner and outer and Spirit and matter.

For instance, from Abulafia's Adam Ve-Hheva (see links below):

The pairs "Adam and Eve," "my father and mother," and "blood and ink," all have the numerical value of seventy. What is implied is that "Adam," "my father," and "ink" represent the formative aspect of existence, whereas "mother," "blood," and "Eve" represent the material aspect of existence.  

  Moshe Idel, Studies in Ecstatic Kabbalah, 1988, p.35,

If there is such a connection, one of the best and most logical places to look for it would be in the meaning and value of the word for this correspondence itself -- gematria.

Gematria, the numerical essence of a letter, word or phrase, is spelled Ghimmel-Mem-Tayt-Raysh-Yod-Aleph ( So what is the essence of gematria itself?

At this point, it is unavoidably necessary to learn how to think "formatively," in Idel's term. If you want to understand Qabala, it is necessary to think like a Qabalist. Those who dismiss this possbility will never understand a term that connects the worlds of structure and energy.

This abstract-analogical equation shows the archetype of organic movement (Ghimmel/3) acting in the biosphere (Mem/40) to create a cell, seed, or essence (Tayt/9); the essence has cosmic significance (Raysh/200) in the linking of material (Yod) and immaterial (Aleph) realms.

What could be clearer?   (Just click on the letters).

The gematria of any letter or word represents its essential (Tayt) connection between its internal (formative) biological pattern (Ghimmel-Mem) and its outer (material) cosmic signficance (Raysh) in existence (Yod). If recognized, meaning (Aleph) appears.

Or, we can read from both directions, towards and away from the -- Tayt -- the cell/seed between Ghimmel-Mem (the coming into (3-40) space-time process) and Raysh-Yod-Aleph (beyond space-time (200) returning existence (10) to archetype(1). Tayt (9) substitutes for Lammed in Ghimmel-Mem-Lammed (the spelling of Ghimmel) ; movement is truncated and reduced to its essence. Raysh-Yod-Aleph is Raysh, Raysh-Yod-Sheen with Aleph appearing as itself rather than its interaction with Existence, Sheen, the Breath of God.      

In Hebrew, Gam, Ghimmel-Mem is an adverb: even, moveover, neither, again, alike. Tariy, Tayt-Raysh-Yod is a (feminine) adjective meaning fresh, new (to be moist) as the morning dew.

The alternative spelling simply adds another existential Yod: one for the inside and one for the outside.

1 10 200 9 40 10 3

Gematria: 273

Here are two examples from the 13th Century alphabetically-oriented (in contrast to later Sephirotically-oriented kabbalah) "ecstatic-prophetic" kabbalist Abraham Abulafia: Adam Ve Hheva and Guf Ha-Satan.

See: Gematria of Eve | Gematria of the Autiot: Numeric Values of the Hebrew Alphabet | Comparative Numerology | Fundamental Powers: Hebrew Numbers with Gematria | Gematria Types | Gematria Links

Additonal references:

Jean Houston: The Powers of Genesis

The Spice of Torah - Gematria, Gutman G Locks, Judiaca Press, 1985 with introduction: The Principal (sic) of Numerical Interpretation, Rabbi J Immanuel Schochet, 1985
The Inner Meaning of the Hebrew Letters, Robert M Haralick, Aronson, 1985
Judaism, Mathematics, and the Hebrew Calendar, Myman Gabai, Aronson, 2002

There are many was to use Gematria. Not only can the numerical value of words be used to determine a Gematria, but the number of letters a word contains also reveals something about the word. Abraham, Issaac, and Jacob combined contain thirteen letters. Sarah, Rivka, Rachel and Leah, their wives also have thirteen letters. This reveals a distinct design. 13 is the Gematria of "one", hinting that the concepts contained in Abraham, Isaac and Jacob are found in one person, their heir, the Jewish man. This is also true for Sarah, Rivka, Rachel, and Leah, whose characteristics are found in their heir, the Jewish woman. 13 plus 13 equals 26, the numerical value of God's Most Holy Name.

     Rabbi J Immanuel Schochet, in the Introduction of Gematria-Spice of Torah, p.1
     (See The Abraham Cycle for spellings/gematria and formative expansions.)

This is only half the story (naturally). YHWH, "God's Most Holy Name" is the integration and interpenetration of the two lives (Hay and Hay) of the two worlds that Gematria connects -- most generally, inner and outer and Spirit and Matter, or, as Idel puts it, between "the formative ... and the material." Only when the archetypes of perfected masculinity (13) and femininity (13) are discovered and combined (26) in individual human consciousness can YHWH appear. Contents