Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.
View your shopping cart Shopping Cart | My Account | Help | Become a Fan on Facebook Become a Fan | Follow Us on Twitter Follow Us | Watch Us on YouTube Watch Us | Subscribe to our RSS Feeds Subscribe
Browse ProductsAuthorsArticlesBlogsEncyclopediaNewslettersAffiliate ProgramContact UsBooksellers
Advanced Search
LLEWELLYN JOURNAL
Article Topics
List of Articles
RSS Data Feeds
Mission Statement
Use of Our Articles
Writers' Guidelines

Email Exclusives
Sign up to receive special offers and promotions from Llewellyn.

Get the Latest Issue of New Worlds

September/October Issue

New Worlds Catalog

Get the FREE app for your tablet and mobile device. Now available in the iTunes Store and the Google Play Store

Also available as a PDF File.

Click for more information about New Worlds or to receive issues via mail.


The Llewellyn Journal
Print this Article Print this Article

The Hebrew Alphabet

This article was written on September 29, 2009 posted under Kabbalah

The most important symbolic alphabet in Western magical tradition, the Hebrew alphabet entered occultism by way of the Cabala, a system of Jewish mystical thought and practice adopted by many non-Jewish magicians during and after the Renaissance. The Hebrew letters have a more extensive set of symbolic correspondences than any other alphabet used in Western magic.

Much of the basic symbolism of the Hebrew alphabet can be found in the Sepher Yetzirah, a pre-Cabalistic book of Jewish mysticism which was taken up by Cabalists. From this source comes the relationship between the letters and the Cube of Space, a basic diagram of Cabalistic theory. The link between the Hebrew letters and the Tree of Life, the other (and more widely known) Cabalistic diagram, emerged in the early stages of the development of the Cabala, and can be found in the Bahir—the oldest major text of the Cabala—and the Zohar, Moses de Leon’s massive Cabalistic sourcebook.

 

alpha1

 

 

alpha2

 

 

 

alpha3

 

 

 

alpha4
 

 

 

The twenty-two letters are divided into three mother letters, seven double letters, and twelve single letters; these groupings, as the table shows, signify the elements of fire, water, and air; the seven planets; and the twelve signs of the zodiac. Other correspondences include tarot trumps, colors, scents,musical notes, angels, divine names, Paths on the Tree of Life, and parts of the Cube of Space. These correspondences have developed over more than two thousand years of mystical speculation and occult practice in Jewish and non-Jewish communities alike, and they contain a good deal of internal confusion and contradiction.

According to Cabalistic thought, the Hebrew letters form the basic patterns and tools with which God created the universe. Specific combinations of letters form the Names of God, which have power over the universe when spoken correctly. Most important of the Names is the Tetragrammaton or four-lettered Name. In orthodox Judaism this name is so sacred that it may not be spoken aloud. Cabalistic practitioners in and out of Judaism have recorded a wide range of pronunciations, which are used in magical practice, particularly to command spirits.

Another important Hebrew divine Name is the Shem ha Mephoresh or Shemhamphorash, the “Divided
Name.” According to legend, this Name is so powerful that to pronounce it correctly would destroy the universe.

According to some Cabalistic sources, one of the letters of the alphabet is missing in the current shemittah or cosmic cycle, and will be restored in the next.

From The New Encyclopedia of the Occult, by John Michael Greer


RELATED PRODUCTS

Godwin's Cabalistic Encyclopedia
Godwin's Cabalistic Encyclopedia
A Complete Guide to Cabalistic Magic
David Godwin
$39.95 US,  $47.95 CAN | Add to Cart
Modern Magick
Modern Magick
Twelve Lessons in the High Magickal Arts
Donald Michael Kraig
$29.95 US,  $34.95 CAN | Add to Cart

Please note that the use of Llewellyn Journal articles
is subject to certain Terms and Conditions

Of the many esoteric subjects studied by ceremonial magicians, alchemy is often considered one of the hardest and most arcane, while the tarot is thought to be one of the most accessible and "hands-on." Historically the language of alchemy, with its inscrutable riddles and metaphor, has baffled many students, while the images of the tarot are more... read this article
Things That Scare Us...And How to Get Over Them
Llewellyn's Classic Tarot
The Union Screaming House: The Haunting Continues...Long After the Doors Are Shut
365 Ways to Attract Good Luck
The Oracle of the Angels

Most recent posts:
Where Is the Creepiest Place You've Ever Been?
Readers, please enjoy this guest blog post by Debi Chestnut, author of How to Clear Your Home of Ghosts & Spirits, Is Your House Haunted?, and...

A Spread for Guidance
This spread, called Titania’s Dream, is from the Victorian Fairies Tarot companion book by Lunaea Weatherstone (art by Gary Lippincott). It was...

Part 2: Why Work with Demons?
Readers, please enjoy this guest blog post by Aaron Leitch, author of several books, including Secrets of the Magickal Grimoires, The Angelical...





Llewellyn's 2015 Astrological Calendar Llewellyn's 2015 Astrological Calendar
82nd Edition of the World's Best Known, Most Trusted Astrology Calendar

By: Llewellyn
Price: $14.99 US,  $16.99 CAN
Llewellyn's 2015 Witches' Datebook Llewellyn's 2015 Witches' Datebook
By: Llewellyn
Price: $10.99 US,  $12.50 CAN
Llewellyn's 2015 Daily Planetary Guide Llewellyn's 2015 Daily Planetary Guide
Complete Astrology At-A-Glance

By: Llewellyn
Price: $12.99 US,  $14.95 CAN
Llewellyn's 2015 Witches' Calendar Llewellyn's 2015 Witches' Calendar
By: Llewellyn
Price: $13.99 US,  $15.95 CAN
Llewellyn's 2015 Moon Sign Book Llewellyn's 2015 Moon Sign Book
Conscious Living by the Cycles of the Moon

By: Llewellyn
Price: $11.99 US,  $13.95 CAN