B’ShaLaHh – Removing the Wheels of Mitsraim

When Pharaoh (our chaotically attending to too many things in experience)1 finally does send forth the ability to be mindful of experience (עם, the people),2 God’s Guidance found in experience (Elohim)3 does not overwhelm them by sending them to thresh4 through experience, gazing from one end of experience to the other (P’lishtim).5 Instead, they are made to go around, threshing through only the flash flood of things that drive directly forward in experience (midbar),6 what is stirred up in experience of looking out longingly and expectantly (Yam SuPh).7 Nevertheless, our Yisrael (our making a sustained survey of the many things advancing forward)8 have many things within their grasp (חמושים).9 Mentally, they leave the hopeful acts of gazing at and squinting through an intertwining of experience (Sukkot)10 and establish a (mental) presence11 feeling stunned and undecided (Aetam);12 and God’s bringing forth of existence (Y-H-W-H) goes before them as an imposition of an overbearing presence (עמוד הענן – a pillar of cloud).13 When we annually recount these events at our Pesach seder, we are to understand that we were slaves in Mitsraim. As slaves leaving Mitsraim, this is what we experienced, what we continue to experience daily in our lives – God’s bringing forth of existence (Y-H-W-H) going before us as an imposition of an overbearing presence.

Yet when we are exhaustively laboring (night),14 God is there for us as an imposition of persistence (עמוד האש – a pillar of fire).15 To that end, God instructs our Moshe, our mental faculty drawing out particular things from a midst the many stirring things encountered in experience,16 to establish a (mental) presence with the coming in of things that are clear and evident (Pi-haChirot)17 by probing what lies upon the surface of experience (Ba’al Tsaphon).18 But it is here that our Pharaoh, our chaotically attending to too many things,1 will re-emerge to deal with what appears to be closing in upon us from the flash flood driving directly forward (midbar). And it is here that, for our benefit, God will strengthen our Pharaoh – its show of endurance (חילו – army),19 its acts of devoting attention (עבדיו – servants),20 its ability to engage things in experience (רכב – chariots),21 and its ability to expose and clarify things in experience (פרשיו – horseman) 22 – so as to deliberate over experience (מלך)23 while feverishly focusing upon the many things narrowing in from experience (Mitsraim).24 Overtaken with fear, we cry out to God, while saying to our Moshe, our mental faculty drawing out particular things from a midst the many stirring things encountered in experience, it was better for us to devote our attention (serve, slave), feverishly focusing upon the many things narrowing in (Mitsraim), than for us to be drawn out (die)25 into the flash flood of things in experience that drives directly forward (midbar).6 It was better to feel bombarded and take no action, than to face life experience head on and be forced to engage.

But God tells Moshe (our mental faculty drawing out particular things from a midst the many stirring things encountered in experience)13 to direct and guide them so that they march forward: הרם את מטך ונטה את ידך על הים ובקעהו “…elevate your ability to lean in (staff)26 and stretch out your powerful reach (hand) upon what is stirred up in experience (the sea) and drive deeply into it.” The sea represents what is stirred up in experience (המה > ים). But before it even commences, God acknowledges that we will enter into what is stirred up in experience, hesitantly. The word YaBaShah (יבשה – dry land) is directly related to the verbs BuSh (בוש – delay > to be embarrassed) and BaShaSh (בשש – to delay), in that it takes a delay in time for something organic to dry up. Therefore, allegorically YaBaShah (יבשה – dry land), is used to signify a person’s delaying. God’s guidance found in experience first presents itself before our Yisrael (our making a sustain survey of the many things advancing forward) as a MaL‘aKh (מלאך – what is sent forth).27 But as a result of their delaying (מאחריהם),28 it moves between our Yisrael and our Mitsraim.

Ultimately, both our Yisrael (our making a sustained survey of what advances forward)8 and our Mitsraim (our feverishly focusing upon the many things narrowing in)24 end up in the sea, in what is stirred up in experience. However, because of the feverish nature of Mistraim, its frenetic hecticness that fruitlessly tries to focus on every last thing narrowing in, we are unable to effectively utilize it. This is the reason why G-d strengthens our Mistraim, so that God’s bringing forth of existence (Y-H-W-H) and God’s guidance found in experience will be taken seriously (honored), and what we encounter in experience can be processed.

In the time of making observations (אשמרת), the making of an investigation (בוקר – morning)29 comes into existence, G-d’s bringing forth of existence thrusts Himself toward our Mitsraim (our feverishly focusing upon the many things narrowing in) with an imposition of experience that is persistent and overbearing (a pillar of fire, and cloud) and stirs up the mental presence (camp) of our Mistraim. Thus the wheels, the frenetic hectic turning this way and that,30 of its engaging experience are removed. And our Moshe (our mental faculty drawing out particular things from a midst the many stirring things encountered in experience) returns what is stirred up in experience (the sea) upon our Mitsraim (our many acts of focusing upon the many things narrowing in) – upon its engaging experience (רכב) and upon its clarifying of experience (פרשיו). At the turn of making an investigation (בוקר), what is stirred in experience returns to its steady, direct and aligned flow (איתן) and our Mitsraim takes off to meet it. Thus not a single enigma or conundrum (אחד)31 regarding experience remains, because our Mitsraim (our many acts of focusing upon the many things narrowing in) has been completely drawn out (manifest), upon the pouring forth of what is stirred up in experience (מת על שפת הים – dead upon the shore of the sea).25,32,33

Allegorically, the song of the sea, in many ways reiterates the themes previously touched upon. Thereafter, Moshe (the mental faculty drawing out particular things from a midst the many stirring things encountered in experience) causes a marching forward from seeing what is stirred up in experience, looking out longingly and expectantly (Yam SuPh), toward the flash flood of experience in fixing one’s gaze (midbar Shur).6,34 There they encounter what dangles35 of many stirring things (המה > ימים), but they do not find things of interest stirred up (water). They come into a state of bitterness where they are unable to align themselves (drink) with what is stirred up in experience. But God then showed them that by striving with experience (עץ – tree)36 and by comporting oneself (שלך),37 what is stirred in experience becomes sweet. Furthermore, by being attentive to the channeling of (קול – voice)38 God’s bringing forth of existence (Y-H-W-H), of God’s guidance found in experience (Elohim), and by doing what is upright and appropriate (הישר) in eyeing-observing Him, and by turning whichever way for the sake of the demands made by Him (מצותיו),39 and by observing the limits inscribed by Him (חקיו) – all of the writhing with experience (מחלה)40 associated with the feverish focusing upon the many things narrowing in from experience (Mitsraim) shall not be put upon you. For God’s bringing forth of existence will be what enables you to feel at ease (רפאך).41

Having been reassured, they were coming into growing strong with greater resolve (אילם – Aelim)42 where there were many starts (two)43 as a result of what bears down in experience (ten),44 eyeings-observations (wells) of what is stirred up in experience (water) and many things bubbling up (seventy)45 as a result of the acts of standing firmly in wonderment, yet able to avail oneself of an opportunities (date trees).46 From there they were marching on and entering into the flash flood driving directly forward of what was intensely bright and imposing (midbar Sin),47 that was between showing resolve (Aelim) and showing restraint in filtering and clarifying experience (Sinai).48 So they were joining up upon Moshe (the mental faculty drawing out particular things from a midst the many stirring things encountered in experience) and Aharon (the mental faculty repetitively bringing things to light),49 “Who shall give forth our being completely drawn out into the hand of God’s bringing forth of experience…” Because they lamented not having the confidence to drive into experience (meat)50 and what to engage in experience (bread).51 Despite Moshe’s castigations, they were assured that God had heard their complaints and that God will give them confidence to drive into experience (meat) in times of confusion (evening)52 and what to engage in experience (bread) in times of making an investigation (morning). Ultimately, as if to answer the question of “Who shall give forth our being completely drawn out into the hand of God’s bringing forth of experience…,” Aharon (the mental faculty repetitively bringing things to light)49 spoke such that they turned toward the flash flood driving directly forward of experience (midbar) and then the intensity of G-d’s bringing forth of existence appeared in the form of an overbearing presence (cloud).

Lest anyone believe that God simply acquiesces in response to our complaints, it is important to understand that the word haLyN (הלין – complain) is actually a form of the verb LuN (לון) meaning both to join up or together and to lodge, which itself evolved from a root meaning to be close (לום – LuM). As opposed to complaining, it is as a result of our being close with and our joining together with those of our mental faculties (Moshe & Aharon) that enable us to engage God’s bringing forth of existence. So that in the times of confusion (evenings) feelings of ease and serenity (שלו – quail)53 can ascend and cover over the presence of mind (the camp). Thereafter, in times of making an investigation of experience (morning), there can be a hedging in of dangling (opportunities) (שכבת טל – laying out of dew).54 Thus the Manna is received.

Technically, the word MaN (מן) comes from the root MaNaH (מנה – to distribute, to enumerate). In Akkadian, among other things, this root means “to supply with food” and in Arabic, “to bestow and inspire.” Although in the peshat (regular reading), the Manna was real food given to the Israelites while they wandered in the midbar for forty years, in the allegory, it represents the daily distribution of divine inspiration that we still encounter in our lives. As with the Israelites, it behooves us not to let it remain until morning, stringing it along and trifling with it, investigating it ad nauseam.55 Each day, a person gathers up according to his full capacity – overstuffed but not quite overwhelmed (עמר – Omer)56 and on days of being elated and getting carried away (ביום הששי – on the sixth day),57 a double portion – a repetitive imposition of full capacity for the sake of a person’s mental sharpening (שני העמר לאחד)58,56,31 Nevertheless, the day of being satiated (שבע, seven),45 is a Shabbat – not only a day of rest, but one of settling in what has come forward of experience (שבת קדש – Shabbat Qodaesh),59,60 for observing unto making a further investigation (למשמרת עד הבקר). The Manna was described as: זרע גד לבן וטמעו כצפיחת בדבש “A seed of coriander, white, and its taste as wafers with honey,” or allegorically: “an act of scattering about experience (seed) so as to engage a spontaneously occurring development (גד), one given priority (לבן). And the experience of it was like an act of gazing over and examining a thing (צפיחת) that pours forth copiously (דבש – honey).”61

The children of Yisrael were marching on, as a result of the flash flood driving directly forward of what was intensely bright and imposing (midbar Sin).6 But it was regarded as their many jaunts through experience (למסעחהם) due to what was coming in (על פי) of God’s bringing forth of existence (Y-H-W-H). Therefore, they were establishing a (mental) presence with the acts of restlessly roaming about (camping in R’phidim).62 They noted there did not exist things of interest stirred up to align with (water to drink).63 However, allegorically there were plenty of things stirred up in experience for them to align with. It was just that in their state of restlessly roaming about, they were unable to choose. The solution was for Moshe (the mental faculty drawing out particular things from a midst the many stirring things encountered in experience) to stand upon the boulder in Choraev before the eyes of the elders of Yisrael. The word for boulder, TsuR (צור), most probably literally means “form or formation.” It is etymologically related to the verb TsuR (צור) which means to form or shape, but literally means “to narrow or close in upon something.” Allegorically, it represents sort of a motivational target for a person to narrow in upon. It is for this reason that God is often referred to as a TsuR, one’s motivation. Although the word Choraev (חורב) means “the desolate or dry place,” this root also means “to feel ravaged” (Jr2:12) and allegorically represents what is ravaging in experience. So Moshe (the mental faculty drawing out particular things from a midst the many stirring things encountered in experience) stands upon what there is to narrow in upon a midst what is ravaging of experience before the eyes (eyeings-observations) of the acts of clearly visualizing things (elders),64 of the making of a sustained survey of the many things advancing forward in experience (Yisrael), and by striking what there is to narrow in upon (boulder), out comes many things of interest stirred up (water).

Nevertheless, they remain with the acts of restlessly roaming about (R’phidim), questioning (allegorically): היש יי בקרבנו אם אין “Does God’s bringing forth of existence exist with our approaching closely, or not?”65 Therefore, the eclipsing of mindfulness (Amaleq)66 comes in. To counter it, Moshe (the mental faculty drawing out particular things from a midst the many stirring things encountered in experience)15, Aharon (the mental faculty repetitively bringing things to light)49 and ChuR (the mental faculty examining what is evident so as to gain clarity)67 stand upon the seeing of what is compelling in experience (ראש הגבעה – the head of the hill).68,69 Within Moshe’s hand is the ability to lean into G-d’s guidance found in experience (מטה האלהים – the staff of Elohim).70 Dwelling upon the extensiveness of G-d’s bringing forth of existence (Y’hoshua),71 they battle against the eclipsing of mindfulness (Amaleq). But there are too many things for them to consider from experience and so Moshe’s hands are described as heavy. So together, they take up from experience that which sticks out most prominently (אבן – stone)72 for the mental faculty drawing out particular things from a midst the many stirring things encountered in experience (Moshe) to settle down upon it. And utilizing the mental faculties of repetitively bringing things to light (Aharon) and of examining what is evident so as to gain clarity (ChuR), they are able to distinguish between the many things found in experience despite the eclipsing of mindfulness (Amaleq), until the coming in of fortitude (sun).73 By so doing, the dwelling upon the extensiveness of G-d’s bringing forth of existence (Y’hoshua), was thus weakening the eclipsing of mindfulness (Amalaeq).

Notes:
1 – Pharaoh (פרעה) one’s being in denial and thus chaotically attending to too many things in experience, branching out in many directions. From (Ex5:4)(CrII28:19) from PaRa\ (פרע) to cause to disengage, cause disorder, chaos. Also to refuse to accept (Pr1:25) and to avoid (Pr4:15;8:33;13:18). In Arabic: to be free, available, collect one’s thoughts, devote and apply oneself, and do one’s best, to put forth branches, to branch, to derive / deduce from ramification, concerning practical application. In Arabic PaRa\ evolved into PaRa\g
2 – people (עם – \aM) allegorically means “being ever presently (mindful) of what crowds in.” It comes from the related roots \aMaH – \aMaM (עמה – עמם) literally meaning to be ever present with. However, when something is ever present with something else, it can be close or too close. Therefore, the words derived from this root reflect closeness: with (עם – \iM), people-crowd (עם – \aM), and connecting (עמה – \uMaH); and those representing being too close: covered over, suppress, ignorant, dim, dark, and blind. In ancient Hebrew and in those Semitic languages retaining the ghayin variant of ayin, the latter words are spelled with ghayin, but are nevertheless etymologically related.
3 – Elohim (אלהים) plural of Eloah (אלוה) – Although most derive it from El (אל), I believe that the word evolved from LaWaH (לוה) meaning to escort and guide. Hence, initially the word Elohim (אלהים) referred to the pantheon of gods, whose purported purpose was to guide and escort humanity. With the advent of monotheism, the word was used with a singular verb to represent G-d, but continued to be used to represent the pantheons of others, a council of judges and people of similar purpose.
4 – way, thresh (דרך – DeReKh). from DaRaKh (דרך) to tread, trample, thresh, walk about, guide and aim.
5 – P’lishtim (פלשתים) from the root PaLaSh (פלש) which essentially means to go from one end-extreme to the other [related to PaLaH (פלה to make distinct, distinguish) and PaLa\ (פלא – perform miracles, do-perform remarkably)]. In Hebrew, words of this root mean extent (of clouds) (Ek27:30) and to wallow (Jr6:26). Generally thought to mean invader, possibly from Syriac: break through, dig through a wall, pierce, undermine, force into, fathom; violation. The allegorical meaning comes from allegorical context and the related root PaLaS in Akkadian: to gaze from one extreme to another, consider, direct or divert attention, check over, look at / toward; where PaLaSh means: perforate, make a breach, bore.
6 – miDBaR (מדבר) In most Semitic languages the root DaBaR (דבר) means to drive at and to direct. Even in Hebrew, the same piel form of the verb that usually means to speak means “to drive over, barrel down, to kill” (CrII22:10). The word DeBheR (דבר) means plague for this reason. Although miDBar may simply mean “a place requiring direction or guidance,” the fact of geography and the frequent occurrence of flash floods suggests to me otherwise.
7 – sea of reeds (ים סוף – Yam SuPh) YaM (ים – sea, what is stirred up) from HaMaH (המה – to stir up). The Arabic cognate of SuPh (סוף) means “to look out expectantly and longingly, to look forward to.”
8 – Yisrael (ישראל) from the verb Sarah (שרה) said to mean to wrestle, with its associated noun meaning princess. Actually, it means “to fix on something either visually or physically.” When to fix on something physically, it could be used to mean wrestle. When to fix on something visually, its male counterpart, Sar (שר), means an overseer, a member of the court. Additionally, El (אל) G-d, meaning one advancing forward with initiative such as in el (אל) to, toward; ayil (איל) ram forward; Ya/aL (יאל) to endeavor to advance forward allegorically can be used to mean “what advances forward” and “one’s advancing forward.”
9 – armed (חמושים – ChaMuShim) related to ChaMaeSh (חמש – five (fingers)) which actually means “grasping or groping” from MuSh (מוש – to grasp, grope)
10 – Sukkot (סוכות) – named for sukkot (thatched huts) which were named for the s’khakh (סכך – thatching) material used to make its roof. Related to SuKh (סוך) to hedge in (Jb38:8), to shelter; SaKhaKh (סכך – to cover snugly) and SaKhaKh (סכך – to knit together (Ps139:13)). However, the etymologically unrelated verb SaKaH (סכה) means to look out and gaze, to hope for and to foresee.
11 – camp (חנה – HhaNaH), essentially meaning “to establish a presence” and allegorically “a mental presence.” It evolved from HoN (הון – substantial > wealth) and its hiphil (ההין to make/be present, make/be ready; (Dt1:41)), HaeN (חן – here) and HiNaeH (הנה – see here (be present)). Evolved from (חנה – HhaNaH) is HhaNaN (חנן – presence > grace).
12 – Aetam (אתם) from TaMaH (תמה) meaning “to stand still in amazement, to wonder, to be stunned and undecided.”
13 – pillar of cloud (עמוד הענן – \aMuD He\aNaN) Allegorically, an imposition of overbearing presence. Pillar, \aMaD (עמד – to stand, remain). But Akkadian: to lean on, impose, come in contact with, reaches to; Arabic: to prop, lean upon, apply oneself, support one’s weight. Related Hebrew: \eeMaDi (עמדי – with me (= leaning-relying upon me)). The word for cloud (ענן – \aNaN) is derived from \aNaH to afflict, overwhelm, humiliate, rape, oppress.
14 – night (לילה – LaiLaH) etymologically probably from a doubling of either La/aH (לאה – to be exhausted, to labor exhaustively) or LaHaH (להה – (exhausted) to languish, be tired)
15 – Moshe (משה) allegorically complex, with all of the details of the story, the archetype of Moshe means: “A behavior of being mindfully present with many startling things coming in from experience, in mentally clinging to a scene, sucking up some details and looking them over, considering the many possible directions that one particular thing may go, being more mindful of it, channeling this one particular thing while subduing the thoughts about the others, and in showing resolve and being decisive in attending to this one particular thing, making it a priority, thus drawing it out from a midst the many other stirring things found in experience.” Simplied: “the mental faculty drawing out particular things from a midst the many stirring things encountered in experience.” The verb MaShaH (משה) simply means “to draw out.”
16 – a pillar of fire (עמוד האש –) Allegorically, an imposition of persistence. Pillar, \aMaD (עמד – to stand, remain). But Akkadian: to lean on, impose, come in contact with, reaches to; Arabic: to prop, lean upon, apply oneself, support one’s weight. Related Hebrew: \eeMaDi (עמדי – with me (= leaning-relying upon me)). Fire /aeSh (אש, fire, persistent existence) from /uSh (אוש – to make persistent, to go on and on, be lengthy, make a steady noise (Jastro))
17 – entrance of the grottoes (פי החירות – Pi-haChirot) allegorically “the coming in of “things that are clear and evident.“ Pi (פי) from PeH (פה – mouth, place of coming in) which evolved from B’ (ב.. – come in). PeH (פה) later developed a sense of edge, see Pa/aH (פאה). Grottoes (חירות – Chirot; (see Jastro)) from ChaRaR (חרר – make a hole, bore through, make a clearing) > ChuR (חור) > to make clear and evident
18 – Ba’al Tsaphon (בעל צפון) Allegorically: probing what lies upon the surface of experience. The verb Ba\aL (בעל) means to engage in sexual intercourse (Dt21:13;24:1). From there it comes to mean husband > master, owner. Ba’al the Canaanite god of the rain storms means “fructifier.” The verb evolved from Ba\aH (בעה – to probe, search). TsaPhoN (צפון) comes from TsaPhaH (צפה – to overlay, cover). In Hebrew, TsaPhoN means north, probably referring to the snow covered peaks of Lebanon (which also means layered).
19 – army (חיל – HhaYiL) its show of endurance. Originally from HhoL (חול – sand, common) both of which mean to go on and on enduringly, pervasive, ubiquitous.
20 – work-serve-slave-worship-devote (עבד – \aBhaD) Although the noun originally means slave, the verb evolved to mean to work, serve, worship and devote. Allegorically, it means “devote (attention).”
21 – chariots (רכב – ReKeBh) its ability to engage things in experience. From the verb RaKaBh (רכב – to hitch or latch on, mount > to ride)
22 – horseman (פרשים – P’RaShim) its ability to expose and clarify things in experience. The verb PaRaSh (פרש) means to separate > spread out, scatter > expose > clarify. Horsemen, possibly from the idea of spreading out in the battle field.
23 – King (MeLeKh – מלך) from the verb MaLaKh (מלך) to rule, it evolved from MaLaHh (מלח) to balance > to sail. It is more appropriately translated as to deliberate > to act deliberately. But also means to deliberate, as can be seen in the Akkadian to consider, discuss, advise, look after, mind, and confer.
24 – Mitsraim (מצרים). This word for Egypt probably was derived from there being two narrow (צר) strips of arable land on either side of the Nile river. The allegory is based on the idea that narrowing in upon something can have a visual component. Evidence for this can be seen in the evolved words צוהר window; צהרים (time of clarity) before and after noon; יצהר (transparent) oil and the related Arabic ד’הר to be / become visible, perceptible, distinct, clear, apparent, appear, know, learn, noon. Therefore, MiTsRi (מצרי – Egyptian) allegorically represents one’s visually narrowing in upon something. The doubling in Mitsraim (מצרים) suggests a person’s viusally narrowing in upon what narrows in upon the person. I added “feverishly” because the king of Mitsraim is Pharaoh
25 – die (MuT – מות) has the paradoxical meaning of “to be completely drawn out,” or fully manifest. Its essential meaning of extending something in space or time can be seen by examining the related roots MaTaQ (מתק – to savor), MaTaiy (מתי – (drawn out to) when), and MaTaHh (מתח – to draw, spread out)
26 – staff (מטה – MaTeH) from NaTaH (נטה – to stretch, incline)
27 – angel (מלאך – mal’akh) Allegorically: what-one is sent; from the verb La/aKh (לאך) Ugaritic and Syriac – to send a messenger, a message. Related to Hebrew HaLaKh (הלך – to go, advance).
28 – delay, behind, after (אחר – /aChaR) this root evolved from HhaRaH (חרה) (heap) dung, excrement (KgII18:27), which itself evolved from חרר (to cave >) to heap up, make round (Jastro). When excrement is deposited it is always behind. The root conveys both behind positionally (behind > after > other) and temporally (delay, hesitance and slowness).
29 – morning (בוקר – BoQaeR, time of investigation). From the root BaQaR (בקר) meaning “to investigate, search.”
30 – wheel (אפן – /oPhaN) allegorically: turning this way and that, facing different things, giving different things priority. From the root PaNaH (פנה – to face > turn). Akkadian: to turn, face, be ahead of, forestall, anticipate, forward something urgently, give something priority
31 – one (/eHhaD – אחד) evolved from the root HhaDaD (חדד – to sharpen), literally meaning “one (sharpened point);” allegorically it means “mental sharpness” or “what sharpens the mind” > “enigma, conundrum, or riddle” from the related root HhuD (חוד) meaning to test one’s mental acumen, to propose a riddle or enigma
32 – Shore – (שפה – SaPhaH). Originally lip from S + PeH (פה – mouth), but evolved to SaPhaH (שפה) (to go over the lip) to pour out slowly, tilt, incline (Is13:2)
33 – YaM (ים – sea, what is stirred up) from HaMaH (המה – to stir up)
34 – midbar ShuR (שור – Shur) Allegorical: fixing one’s gaze. This root (ShuR – שור), like with Yisrael, means to be fixed either physically or visually. Hence, physically (wall, ox, umbilical cord) and visually (to get a fix on (see) (Nm23:9,24:17)(Hs14:9)).
35 – three (שלש – ShaLoSh) actually means suspend, dangle. This root evolved from the root שלה meaning to be relaxed and at ease. A doubling of that root formed ShiLShaeL (שלשל) meaning to let down, to lower toward, hang down, chain, couple, relax, and loosen the bowels. ShaLaL (שלל) to let fall. Sh.L.Sh. also means to deposit and entrust.
36 – tree (עץ – \aeTs) derived from the root \uTs (עוץ) which derived from /uTs (אוץ) literally means “to hasten, force, push through” but is used to mean “to advise, give counsel.” Allegorically, it is used to mean “one’s striving, one’s urges or things that are difficult or elusive – the later from the Arabic cognate and context.
37 – to cast, throw (שלך – ShaLaKh) in this case allegorically means to comport oneself. This root evolved from ShaLaHh (שלח – to send forth). In Arabic: to send forth > cast > (to follow through >) enter upon, follow, travel along (a road), way, path, insert, stick in, thread, chain up, wire, thread, proceed, behave, act, comport oneself, behavior, conduct, cleaning, clearing, passable, not blocked, practicable, clean, clear, unreel, unwind, clarify
38 – voice (קל – QoL) allegorically means “channeling” because it evolved from QaWaH (קוה – to channel)
39 – commandment (מצוה – MiTsWaH) from the verb TsiWaH (צוה – to command), evolved from NiTsaH (נצה – to strive), by dropping the initial letter nun. The essential meaning is to strive.
40 – illness, sickness (מחלה – MaHhaLaH). Probably evolved from LaHaH (להה – languish). The allegorical meaning of “writhing with experience” comes from M’ChoLaH (מחולה = מחלה) from HhaLaL (חלל – to throw about), evolving into ChoL (חול) / ChaLaL (חלל) to dance, tremble, writhe in giving birth.
41 – to heal (רפא – RaPha/) evolved from RaPhaH (רפה – to release, dissipate, loosen, let down, make lax > relax, make weak, to leave, forsake, abandon). While often (רפא – RaPha/) means to heal, it also means to release (from back sliding, from responsibility) and to make relax, feel at ease.
42 – Aelim (אילם) growing strong with greater resolve; from /aLaM (אלם) (Biblical Aramaic: to grow / be strong, strengthen, support, be resolved, overpower)
43 – two (שתים – Sh’TayiM) comes from Sh’NaTayim (שנתים) > Sh’Tayim (שתים). However, the allegory comes from the verb ShaTaT (שתת) meaning “to set up / out to do something, to start something or lay the foundation for.”
44 – ten (עשרה – \aSaRaH) metaphorically means “what bears down (upon a person).” This Semitic root consists of two etymologically unrelated homonyms. The number ten evolved from the root that means “to be well supported.” But the other homonym means to urge, force, compel, bear down, plight, and predicament in Arabic; and to put pressure on, demand, exact payment, constrict, enclose, and confine in Akkadian
45 – Sheva/ (שבע). Although with a shin, this word appears to have been derived from the similar root with a letter sin, SaBha\ understood as satiated, it derives from either NaBha\ (נבע – to swell or well up) or Ba\aH (בעה – to bubble up, boil). Perhaps it means the number seven because it fulfills a period of one week, although this too is not completely clear. Metaphorically, from context and this etymology it means “being satiated by what bubbles up” or just “a bubbling up of something
46 – date trees (תמר – TaMaR) meaning “to stand still and upright,” which evolved from the root TaMaH (תמה) meaning “to stand still in amazement, to wonder, to be stunned and undecided.” However, in Arabic TaMaR also means “to bear fruit, make a profit, utilize, and avail oneself of an opportunity.” So allegorically Tamar means “one’s standing firmly in wonderment, yet able to avail oneself of an opportunity.”
47 – midbar Sin (סין – Sin) Allegorically: what is intensely bright and imposing. From SaNaN (סנן (impose >)to be bright, sharp) from ShaNaN (שנן – to sharpen, hone, teach) &/or ShaNaH (שנה – to sharpen > repeat), from /aNaH (אנה – to impose)
48 – Sinai (סיני) Allegorically: showing restraint in filtering and clarifying experience. From SaNaN (סנן (impose >) to be bright, sharp & to filter, refine, strain) from ShaNaN (שנן – to sharpen, hone, teach) &/or ShaNaH (שנה – to sharpen > repeat), from /aNaH (אנה – to impose)
49 – Aharon (אהרן) “the mental faculty bringing things to light;” from the verb HaRaH (הרה – to conceive), but like the related verb HaRHaeR (הרהר), it refers to one’s ability to conceive of something in mind (not in the womb). Also related to these words is the noun HaR (mountain – הר) which literally means “the place of bringing things to light,” a place where one can see and conceive of what is coming due to its elevated perspective.
50 – meat, flesh (בשר – BaSaR). The word almost always means flesh, but literally “what is driven into with confidence,” probably alluding to removing meat from a bone. The Arabic cognate means “to peel, scrape / shave off, grate, shred, come in contact, sexual intercourse, apply oneself.” Also note probable mis-translation of (Ec2:3) תרתי בלבי למשוך ביין את בשרי Conventionally translated as: I sought in my heart to draw out with wine, my flesh. But more correctly translated as: I sought in my heart to draw out with wine, my confidence.
51 – bread (לחם) is related to the word MiLHhaMah (מלחמה – to engage in battle). Both words derive from LaWaHh (לוח – to join together and to be well joined). In Arabic, לחם means to cling, join, solder, get stuck, engage in battle
52 – evening (ערב – \aRaBh) derived from \aRaH (ערה – to pour) > \aRaBh (ערב – to mix, confuse), evening being a time of mixing of day and night. From \aRaBh > \gaRaBh (ערב)
53 – quail (שלו – S’LaW) Allegorically: feelings of ease and serenity. The allegory comes from ShaLaeW (שׁלו) at ease (Jb16:12), relaxation (Jb20:20). Both come from ShaLaH (שלה) (to hang suspended) to be relaxed (Jr12:1), lazy, to be negligent (CrII29:11)
54 – laying out of dew (שכבת טל – ShiKhBhaT TaL) Allegorically: a hedging in of dangling (opportunities). The verb ShaKhaBh (שכב – to snuggle up, huddle, lie up against, lay down) evolved from the verb ShuKh (שׁוך – to cordon off), from SuKh (שוך – to hedge in). The word TaL (טל – dew) literally means “what dangles” from טלה
(suspend in the air) to raise up, which evolved from TsaLaH (צלה – to hang off the side) TsaLaH (צלה – (to suspend from) to roast (SmI2:15)(Is44:16,19). Related roots mean to suspend > to hang off from the side > lean in. Example TsaLaBh (צלב – to crucify), TsaLaPh (צלף – caper bush (hangs off from cliffs)), TsaLa\ (צלע – side, to limp), TsaL (צל – shadow (hangs off the side of a thing)).
55 – remain (יותר – YoTaeR) Allegorically: stringing it along and trifling with it, (investigating it ad nauseam). This root means “what is drawn taught (bow string, cord) / out.” From there it comes to mean “additional > excess > remnant.” The allegory is based on Arabic: to string, string up, wrong, harm, (string along) cheat, dupe; pull taught, stretch, draw tight, to continue / follow in uninterrup-ted succession, perform at intervals; uneven, odd#, string, tendon, manner, mode, way.
56 – his full capacity (עמר – Omer) overstuffed but not quite overwhelmed. Among other things, in Arabic: to load, fill up; in Syriac: be immersed (in an occupation).
57 – sixth (ששי – ShiShy) Allegorically: being elated and getting carried away. The probable literal meaning of six is “carried over (to other hand (when counting)).” It is related to other roots meaning “to lift and carry” originally from NaShaH > NaSa/ (נשה > נשא). They are ShuS (שוש – to lift something, to rob) ShuS (שוס – to lift > plunder), SuS (שוש – uplifted, joyful) > SuS (סוס – horse, one who rears upward).
58 – two (Sh’Naey – שני) from ShaNaH (שנה – to sharpen > repeat), from /aNaH (אנה – to impose)
59 – Sabbath (שבת – Shabbat). This verb evolved from ShaBhaH (שבה – to settle back a captive) which evolved from ShuBh (שוב – to settle back > return, do again, stay, remain). It is related to YaShaBh (ישב – to settle back > sit, settle) and ShaBhaHh (שבח – to settle down, still). So the root (שבת – ShaBhaT) means (to settle down) > cease, rest, but allegorically also has a meaning of settling in.
60 – Holy (קדש – QoDaeSh) Related to the roots meaning to put the head forward – QaDaD (קדד – to bow), QaDQaD (קדקד – crown of head) and QaDaM (קדם to proceed, advance forward); QaDaR (קדר – to drop the head > to duck under, gloomy, potter), QaDaHh (קדח – (drop the head) > to bore into, pierce), ShaQaD (שקד – watch intently, be watchful of, be vigilant, be determined), \aQaD (עקד – to draw the head toward the feet; fix the eyes on s.th, be deter-mined to do s.th (Arb)) The root QaDaSh (קדש) fundamentally means to advance something forward (so as to dedicate for sanctified use).
61 – Manna, described as: זרע גד לבן וטמעו כצפיחת בדבש “A seed of coriander, white, and its taste as wafers with honey,”
– seed (זרע – ZeRa\) meaning to scatter, but practically also suggests implantation > engagement
– coriander (גד – GaD). Allegorically: spontaneously occurring development From the root GaDaD (גדד – to draw off from). The Arabic: new (factor), innovative, luck, recent development, recently become fact, grave, take s.th seriously, strive earnestly. Amharic: luck, strange, monster, flutter about, group.
– white (לבן – LaBhaN) Allegorically: layered to the top > one given priority. Lavan (לבן) means both white and brick. The verb means to layer bricks. A comparison of related words indicate that this root means to layer out and stratify things such as LaBhaSh (to layer clothing – לבש), LaBhaBh (to layer a cake – לבב), ShaLaBh (to join layers, rungs of a ladder – שלב), HhaLaBh (milk, what layers out – חלב) and L’BhoNah (frankincense, what layers out – לבונה). In Arabic it means undertaking, enterprise, object, wish, aim, and goal.
– taste (טעם – Ta\aM). This verb means both to taste and to experience
– wafers (צפיחת – TsaPiHhiT) Allegorically: an act of glazing over and examining a thing. The root evolved from TsaPhaH (צפה – to overlay, (graze over a surface >) observe). Likewise, the Arabic cognate of TsPhaHh > to thumb through, examine, scrutinize)
Honey (דבש – DaBhaSh) literally means both to extend outward and to rush or flow heavily. It is related to DaBhaR (דבר – to drive directly at / over, kill, pestilence, speak); DaBhaQ (דבק – to adhere to, catch up with, pursue); DaBha/ (דבא – strength, prime); DoBh (דוב – bear, one who rushes at). In Akkadian, this root means bear like.
62 – R’phidim (רפידים) Allegorically: the acts of restlessly roaming about. Essentially the root RaPhaD (רפד) means to spread out, from RaPhaH (רפה – release, dissipate). In Akkadian: (spread out) to roam, wander, keep moving, restless.
63 – ShaTaH (שתה – to drink) literally means to align with (need to align a vessel with one’s mouth so as not to spill; see movie Airplane). Sh + /aTaH > ShaTaH (ש + אתה = שתה), it evolved from the rarely used verb /aTaH (אתה) meaning to come, from which also evolved eT (את – (be aligned) with); /ayTaN (איתן – well aligned, perpetual flow) and /aToN (אתון – she donkey, one who walks in alignment)
64 – elders of Yisrael (זקני ישראל) allegorically “the acts of clearly visualizing things of the making of a sustained survey of what advances forward in experience” from (זקן – (be clear) beard, old), related to ZuQ (זוק – (Arb- (make clear in the mind) to visualize) and ZaQaQ (זקק – (to make clear / purify) to distill).
65 – our approaching closely (קרבנו QaRBaeNu). Technically this means “within our midst.” However, the root means “to approach closely.” This is often how it is used allegorically.
66 – Amalaeq (עמלק). \aM (עם) allegorically means “being ever presently (mindful) of what crowds in.” It comes from the related roots \aMaH – \aMaM (עמה – עמם) literally meaning to be ever present with. However, when something is ever present with something else, it can be close or too close. Therefore, the words derived from this root reflect closeness: with (עם – \iM), people-crowd (עם – \aM), and connecting (עמה – \uMaH); and those representing being too close: covered over, suppress, ignorant, dim, dark, and blind. In ancient Hebrew and in those Semitic languages retaining the ghayin variant of ayin, the latter words are spelled with ghayin, but are nevertheless etymologically related.LaeQ (לק), comes from the verb LaQaH (לקה) meaning to suffer, be afflicted, smitten, stricken, and eclipsed.
67 – ChuR (חור) > to make clear and evident
68 – head (ראש – Ro/Sh) possibly derived from Ra/aH (ראה – to see) which explains the vestigial aleph. Contextually, this always works allegorically as well.
69 – hill (גבעה – GiBh\aH) what is compelling. This root means to heap up, therefore > hill, goblet. In Sabaic, the verb GaBa\ (גבע) means to impose and force, to compel
70 – staff of Elohim (נטה אלהים) From: staff (מטה – MaTeH) from NaTaH (נטה – to stretch, incline). Elohim (אלהים) plural of Eloah (אלוה) – Although most derive it from El (אל), I believe that the word evolved from LaWaH (לוה) meaning to escort and guide. Hence, initially the word Elohim (אלהים) referred to the pantheon of gods, whose purported purpose was to guide and escort humanity. With the advent of monotheism, the word was used with a singular verb to represent G-d, but continued to be used to represent the pantheons of others, a council of judges and people of similar purpose.
71 – Joshua (יהושע – Y’HoShu\a). Allegorically: dwelling upon the extensiveness of G-d’s bringing forth of existence. From: Ya (Y-H-W-H, God’s bringing forth of existence) + HoShu\a (הושוע) from YaSha\ (ישע) the Arabic cognate: (dwell upon / linger with) comprehend > comprehensive, hold accommodate, house, seat, encompass, include, be large enough, wide, roomy, spacious, be capable to do something. From Sha\aH (שעה – to dwell, linger).
72 – stone (/eBheN – אבן), from the root BuN (בון – to be or project between), literally means “what sticks out prominently.”
73 – sun (SheMeSh – שמש) Allegorically: unwavering, fortitude, baulking (from the Arabic cognate). The root evolved from ShuM (שום) which essentially means “to stay put.” Hence ShaMaR (שמר – guard, watch), ShaMa\ (שמע – be attentive, listen), ShaMaSh (שמש – to serve, attend to, wait upon) and SuM (שום – to put, place).

A.F.L Beeston, M.A. Ghul, W.W. Muller, J. Ryckmans (1982) Sabaic Dictionary. Publication of the University of Sanaa, Yar

Ernest Klein (1987) A Comprehensive Etymological Dictionary of the Hebrew Language for Readers of English. New York: Macmillan Publishing Company

Hans Wehr. Ed by J Milton Cowan (1979) Hans Wehr A Dictionary of Modern Written Arabic. Ithaca, NY: Published in the United States by Spoken Languages Services, Inc with permission of Otto Harrassowitz

Jeremy Black, Andrew George, Nicholas Postgate, eds., A Concise Dictionary ofAkkadian, 2nd corrected printing (Santag Arbeiten und Untersuchungen Zur Keilschriftkunde, 5; Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz Verlag, 2000)

Marcus Jastrow (1996) A Dictionary of the Targumim, the Talmud Babli and Yerushlami, and the Midrashic Literature.New York: The Judaica Press

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David Kantrowitz (1991 – 2009) Judaic Classics version 3.4. Institute for Computers in Jewish Life, Davka Corp., and/or Judaica Press, Inc.

G. del Olmo Lete & J. Sanmartin (2003) A Dictionary of the Ugaritic Language in the Alphabetic Tradition. Leiden: Brill. Translated by Wilfred G.E. Watson

Wolf Leslau (1976) Concise Amharic Dictionary. University of California Press. Berkeley and Los Angeles.

H.W.F. Gesenius (1979) Gesenius’ Hebrew – Chaldee Lexicon. Baker Books. Grand Rapids.

About the Author
David Kolinsky is a retired physician born and raised in Monsey, New York. While living in Monterey California, David initially lived as a secular, agnostic Jew. However, in his spare time, he delved into twenty years of daily study of Hebrew etymology and Torah study culminating in the writing of an etymological dictionary of Biblical Hebrew and a metaphorical translation of Torah. Abandoning his agnostic views, David was simultaneously a spiritual leader of the world's smallest conservative synagogue, a teacher in his local reform synagogue, and a gabbai at Chabad. He is currently sheltering in place with his family in his new home in Plano, Texas.
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