Hidden Meanings: Part V: Signs
Saul Gorenstein - December 25, 2008
One of the main attractions of the Kabbalah is that not only does it talk about the secrets hidden within sacred texts but it also shows you how to open the doors yourself. This is done through a form of numerology called gematria which shows followers how to interpret the hidden messages inside the Torah by substituting numbers for the Hebrew letters in the text.
Zodiac 600 C.E.: Beit Alpha, Israel
Many Jews have always believed that the Torah contained encoded messages and hidden meanings and religious scholars engaged in what seems like an eternal struggle to break the code and given them the answers that they were seeking. Through the process of gematria the Kabbalists believed they had found the way to do just that.
But like every complex issue it was never that simple and various scholars developed many different methods to put this answer into action. The result was that there are up to 70 different methods to use gematria. This resulted in a number of different schools of Kabbalah developing their own methods and coming up with their own secrets and prophesies for the future.
There is certainly a deep and serious side to numerology as practiced in Kabbalah but there can also be a fun part as well. Gematria can also be used to figure out your own personality type and to see if any particular numbers might bring better or worse luck for your future. You can calculate your own Kabbalistic number by summing up the letters from your first and last names and dividing the outcome by number 9. Increase the remainder by 1 and you will have your number. Here’s an example of how it works. Take a name like Michele Ann Smith and do the math.
37 + 11 + 24 = 72
72 : 9 = 8, the remainder is 0
0 + 1 = 1
In this case the Number 1 would be Michele’s Kabbalistic number and if she wants to have good luck she should make sure to get a lucky charm with the number 1 on it.
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