David Kolinsky
David Kolinsky

Nitsavim – By Applying Yourself, Firmly You Stand

Throughout Torah, the word haMaQoM (המקום) refers to a vaguely defined destination to which HaShem will eventually lead the people. In hindsight, we know that haMaQoM (המקום) represents Canaan, Jerusalem and the temple mount; but these places are not mentioned specifically because allegorically haMaQoM (המקום) represents any and all confrontations that we encounter in experience.1 These are the encounters and confrontations to which we are led by God’s bringing forth of existence (Y-H-W-H), God’s guidance being presented in experience (Elohim).2 As such, haMaQoM (המקום) is not the ultimate destination, but rather a frequently visited confrontation that requires each of us to be constantly attentive to the channelings (voice)3 of God’s bringing forth of existence (Y-H-W-H).

However, those making a sustained survey of the many things advancing forward in experience (Yisrael)4 have yet to come to haMaQoM (המקום) for they remain within the expansiveness (plains)5 of one’s yearning to give forth of oneself in taking notice of things in experience (Moab).6 There they rigidly stand (nitsavim), restraining themselves (כלכם)7 – their ability to see (ראש),8 their visually going back and forth (שבטים),9 their ability to clearly visualize things (זקנים),10 and their ability to direct and aim their gaze so as to set goals and make plans (שטרים).11

Nevertheless, through the acts of daintily roaming about experience (טף),12 acts of conducting oneself through experience (נשים),13 and an ability to draw inward into something (גר)14 that is with the approaching closer of one’s mentally attending to a particular aspect of experience (within the camp)15 – from the act of leaning into the many difficult things that are elusive (choppers of wood),16,17 unto an act of drawing up many stirring things (water)18 – we may still cross into a clear understanding (ברית)19 of God’s bringing forth of existence (Y-H-W-H), God’s guidance being presented in experience (Elohim)2 and into what is advancing forward of It (אלתו).20 Because as the creator of our existence, God is obliged (נשבע)21 to one’s spreading out into experience and taking notice of what is stirred up (Avraham),22 to one’s bringing things to light in being meticulously alert to what is around (Yitshhaq),23 and to one’s investigating what comes around in experience (יעקב)24 to be the guidance that can be found in experience (Elohim).2 For it is up to God to establish (הקים) that which causes a stirring (היום)25 for us, that which is firmly confronting for us in experience, haMaQoM (המקום).

God’s obligation to create experience and guide us through it remains in effect whether we are (mentally) present (פה)26 with God’s bringing forth of existence (Y-H-W-H), God’s guidance being presented in experience (Elohim)2 or not. For there are times when we settle into the act of feverishly focusing on the many things in experience narrowing in (Mitsraim),27 when we pass through the ways of heedlessly drawing into experience (nations).28 There are times when our willing determination (לב)29 turns away from God’s bringing forth of existence (Y-H-W-H), God’s guidance being presented in experience (Elohim)2 – with rigidity (שרש),30 disengaging (פרה),31 looking about (ראש),32 and ineffectively chewing over experience (לענה)33 – saying, “There shall be peace for me because with the resolute stubbornness of my will, I shall move forward.” And thus an engaging of life experience is avoided.

Nevertheless, HaShem will not lift off (סלח forgive)34 – for the confrontational presentation (אף anger)35 of God’s bringing forth of existence (Y-H-W-H) will become volatile and His zealousness will be upon that way of thinking, that way of being mentally persistent (איש).36 For God’s bringing forth of existence (Y-H-W-H) will wipe out its way of applying oneself (name)37 as a result of what subdues of the things that are put forth and imposed of experience (from beneath the heavens).38,39 There will be a striking down of that way of disposing oneself in experience (land)40 – a withholding of oneself with contentiousness (sulfur)41 and a crumbling (salt)42 – a squandering (שרפה).43 That way of disposing oneself in experience (land) shall not be scattered upon for the purpose of inserting into experience (sowed),44 nor shall it spring forth or be elucidating.45 Each way for a person to settle into experience (עשב)46 shall not ascend through it – as with the retreating (from experience)47 resulting from a person’s brooding uncertainty (Sodom)48 and the feeling overwhelmed (Gamorah),49 speculatively remaining still and stagnant with incessant thinking about experience (Admah)50 and many acts of remaining rigidly firm despite desiring many things (Ts’bhoim).51 Because of a person’s abandoning the clear understanding (ברית)19 of God’s bringing forth of existence (Y-H-W-H), God’s guidance being presented to (Elohim)2 a person’s ability to take notice of things (אבות)52 and because of one’s devoting attention (עבד)53 to other sources of guidance (אלהים אחרים) that they do not acknowledge.54 Therefore, the confronting presentation (אף anger)35 of God’s bringing forth of existence (Y-H-W-H) was inciting against that way for a person to dispose oneself to experience (land)40 bringing upon it all of what was taken lightly (קללה)55 found in experience which had made an impression (הכתובה)56 through the act of recounting (ספר)57 of what was clearly apparent in experience (הזה).58 Thus HaShem was uprooting them from upon their way of being mentally absorbed with experience (ground)59 and was casting them toward another way of disposing of oneself in experience (land).

It is because all of the things in experience that are directly barreling forward shall come upon you (words)60 – those of excess (ברכה)61 and those made light of (קללה)55 that you will return to your willing determination (heart)29 despite all of the acts of heedlessly drawing into experience (nations).28 Thus you will return to God’s bringing forth of existence (Y-H-W-H), God’s guidance being presented to you (Elohim)2 and you will be attentive to His channeling of experience (voice).3 Thus God will bring you into the way of disposing oneself in experience (land)40 that your acts of taking notice of things (fathers)52 had driven into. God will give you an abundance through all of the actions of your hands – through the scattering fruitfulness resulting from your bursting forth into experience (פרי בטנך),31,62 and resulting from your pushing into experience making observations (herd),63 and resulting from your being mentally absorbed with experience (ground).59 Because that which drives directly forward in experience (דבר)60 is approaching closely to you – with your coming into experience (mouth)64 and with your showing a willing determination (heart) 29 to do it.

The Hebrew word for love, /aHaBhaH (אהבה), evolved from the verb HaBhaH (הבה), to give forth of oneself. The essential nature of love is less of a feeling and more of an action – to lovingly give forth of oneself. To love God’s bringing forth of existence (Y-H-W-H), God’s guidance being presented to you in experience (Elohim),2 is to lovingly give forth to all of what HaShem creates for us in our lives – be it your greatest wish, the ultimate challenge or something you would rather avoid. When we choose to advance into what there is to thresh through in experience (דרכיו His ways)65 and to stay put attentively (שמע) with its demands (מצותיו),66 and what channels in of it (חקתיו),67 and the things that are clearly declared in experience (משפטיו)68 then you will truly live, and increase, and God’s bringing forth of existence (Y-H-W-H), God’s guidance being presented to you in experience (Elohim),2 will bless you through your disposing yourself to experience (land).40 But if you allow your willing determination (heart)29 to turn away and you are no longer being attentive (שמע), then you will be compelled (נדח)69 such that you will lay yourself out to other forms of guidance (אלהים אחרים)54 and you will devote attention to them (עבד).53 Thus you will be assuredly lost and you shall not prolong the many stirring experiences (days)25 that would otherwise occur upon the being mentally absorbed with experience (ground).59 Choose to lovingly give of yourself to God’s bringing forth of existence (Y-H-W-H), God’s guidance being presented to you in experience (Elohim),2 to remain attentive with His channeling (voice)3 and to adhere with Him. Because He is your liveliness and the prolonging of the many things stirring you up in life (days).25 Do so, in order to settle in upon the act of being mentally absorbed with experience (ground)59 in that HaShem is obliged21 to your many acts of taking notice of things (fathers)52 – to one’s spreading out into experience and taking notice of what is stirred up (Avraham),22 to one’s bringing things to light in being meticulously alert to what is around (Yitshhaq),23 and to one’s investigating what comes around in experience (יעקב)24 – in order to give forth for them.

Notes:
1 – place, establishment (מקום MaQoM) Allegorically: what is firm, established, establishment, what arises, what confronts, unrelentingly firm, intransigence. From the verb QuM (קום) meaning to be fixed in place > to stand / arise / establish. See Samuel I 4:15 to be fix in place / stand in place (one’s eyes). Note QaM (קם) enemy, foe, adversary (one who stands firmly before, standing up to).
2 – 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.
3 – voice, channeling of sound (קול QoL) which evolved from QaWaH (קוה to channel into)
4 – Yisrael (ישראל) from the verb Sarah (שרה) which does not exactly mean to wrestle, nor does its associated noun exactly mean princess. 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.” Yisrael is an augmentation of Yaaqov (investigating what comes around). Therefore, it is just a bit more than focusing upon the many things advancing forward, because it is an action that is more sustained.
5 – plains (ערבות \aR’BhoT) Allegorically and literally: expanses. Mostly based on allegorical context and the fact that one of the forms of \aRaBh (ערב) evolved from RaBh (רב) large > expansive.
6 – Moab (מואב Mo/aBh) Allegorically: one’s yearning to give forth of oneself (in taking notice of things). From the verb Ya/aBh (יאב) to yearn-long to give forth of oneself. See Syriac cognate: to pant after, desire, eagerly, long for. From the verb /aBhaH (אבה) which in Hebrew means “to be willing to give forth of oneself, yield” whereas in Arabic it means “to take notice of.”
7 – all, each (כול KoL). Allegorically: containing, restraining of. This verb evolved from HhoL (חול sand, common (literally meaning “what is thrown about > goes on and on.”) From there, it evolved to KaLaH (כלה to contain, restrain, complete)
8 – head (ראש – Ro/Sh) possibly derived from Ra/aH (ראה – to see) which explains the vestigial aleph. Contextually, this always works allegorically as well.
9 – rod, staff, branch > tribe (שבט SheBheT) Allegorically: swinging back and forth, scanning. ShaBhaT (שבט) Akkadian “to beat, sweep away, (sweep back and forth” Syriac (swing easily) to fly loose, float, stream; beat out, hammer, rod, staff, branch, tribe); SaBaT (שׂבּט) Arabic – lank hair; graceful stature. The root ShaBaT evolved from ShaBaTs (שבץ) to embroider / inlay, but also agony (SmII1:9); which evolved from ShaBaSh (to go back and forth)
> to run in all directions, entangle, confound; 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). HOWEVER: TaBaT (תבּט) (Arb- (held branch before swinging back > ) hold back, prevent, hinder, handicap, set back, bring failure, frustrate).
10 – elders of (זקני ZiQNaey) 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).
11 – planner, officer, official, magistrate (שטר) Allegorically: one who directs and aims their gaze. From TuR (טור) ( TsuR (צור) to narrow in upon) > sight, direct at / into) > TaRaH (טרה) to throw, project, aim, cast at, argue, debate
12 – dependent, young children (TaPh – טף)allegorically means “one’s mincingly and fastidiously roaming about” from TaPhaPh (טפף) to make the rounds, go about in a delicate affected manner, walk mincingly (Is3:16)
13 – women (נשים NaShim). This word is related to NaSa/ (נשה) which like NaSa/ (נשא) means to lift up and carry along. Thus wife-woman (/eeShaH -אשה) could mean “one who lifts up and carries.” Allegorically, based on this and context, it means “one’s conducting oneself through experience.”
14 – sojourner, convert (גר – GaeR) from the root GuR (גור – sojourn) literally meaning “to draw into something, somewhere, somebody.” גור to sojourn, gather together, be afraid (draw inward), incite; GaRaR (גרר) to drag along, saw, draw up cud; GaRaBh (גרב) to scrape; GaRaPh (גרף) to scrape up, sweep away; GaRaM (גרם) to draw along, carry with, to gnaw on or crush bones; GaRa\ (גרע) to drag away, reduce, diminish; Ga\aR (גער) to draw into, rebuke; GaRaSh (גרש) to drive into so as to drive out / divorce; SaGaR (סגר) to close in upon
15 – in the midst of, (innards) (קרב QeReBh); one close to him, relative (קרבו – Q’RoBho) Roots based on the biliteral root Q.R. (קר) essentially mean “to get in very close”: KaRaH (קרה to come upon, happen occur); QaRa/ (קרא to call closer, call out to, meet, call and read); QaRaBh (קרב to approach); QaRaM (קרם to cover closely, membrane, encrust, plate); QaRaN (קרן horn, what approaches more closely); QaRa\ (קרע (get closely into) to tear into, to put on eye liner); QaRaSh (קרש to contract, gnash, bite into); QaRaS (קרס to stoop, clasp); QaRaTs (קרץ to pinch off, squint, purse); NaQaR (נקר to gouge, chisel); ShaQaR (שקר to gouge > deceive, lie). AND to camp (חנה – HhaNaH) and a camp (מחנה MaHhaNeH): essentially meaning “to establish a presence” and allegorically “a mental presence-mentally attending to” It evolved from HoN (הון – substantial > wealth) and its hiphil (ההין to make/be present, make/be ready; (Dt1:41)), HaeN (הן – here) and HiNaeH (הנה – see here (be present)). Evolved from (חנה – HhaNaH) is HhaNaN (חנן – presence > grace).
16 – chop (wood) (חטב HhaTaBh) Allegorically: to lean into. From HhaTaH (חטה – to incline, lean into) > ChaTa/ (חטא – to veer off, sin). See also HhiTaH (חטה) wheat = what leans, inclines; and sin offering (חטאת ChaTa/T). ChiTae\ (חטא) to re-aim, rectify from veering off-going astray
17 – 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.
18 – water (מים – maYiM) from YaM (ים – sea, what is stirred up) from HaMaH (המה – to stir up)
19 – BriT (ברית) Usually translated covenant, technically it means “clear agreement.” Most of the roots with BaR (בר) literally mean to make a clearing, to clear away, or to go clear through, hence בור (clearing > pit), באר (clearing > well, to clearly elucidate), בער (to clear away > clear a field, burn), ברר (to clear away > sift), ברא (to clear away > to sculpt, create, carve, cut down), ברח (to go clear through > escape, bar), ברך (to go clear through > to excel, be / declare excellent; to make a clearing > kneel, pool), ברק (to go clear through > lightening)
19 – stone (/eBheN – אבן), from the root BuN (בון – to be or project between), literally means “what sticks out prominently.”
20 – curse, imprecation (אלה /aLaH), literally means “what is advancing forward” or “what is of advancing forward.” It is related to 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;” these (אלה /aeLeH).
21 – is promised, has been made to promise (נשבע NiShBa\), oath, promised, obliged (שבועה Sh’Bhu\aH). This root seems to have evolved from Ba\aH (בעה) (probe > poke / beg) and related to Arabic בּאע to pay homage, pledge allegiance. In Hebrew, used in the niphal (passive) and translated as made a promise, but best translated as “obliged to.” Allegorically, this suggests that when we take notice of experience (fathers, אבה in Arabic), God is thus obliged to follow through with us.
22 – Avraham (אברהם) a person’s spreading out so as to take notice of and willingly give forth of oneself to experience, comes from /aBhaR or /eBaeR (אבר – to extend outward, spread wings, take flight) + HaMoN (המון), those that are stirred up, from HaMaH (המה – to stir up). Also the name contains hints of the verb /aBhaH (אבה), meaning “to willingly give forth of oneself” in Hebrew and “to take notice” in Arabic.
23 – YiTsHhaq (יצחק): derived from the root TsaHhaH (צחה) meaning to be bright or clear. Unlike most roots in Hebrew, the root Ts.Hh.Q. (צחק) exhibits consonantal fluidity in both Hebrew, Ugaritic and Arabic. In more than half the cases, this root is spelled with a letter Sin (ש) instead of a Tsade (צ) in Hebrew. Similarly in Arabic can be found S^aHha/ (become clear, bright, aware, alert); D^aHha/ (become visible, appear, bring to light); D^aHhaK (to jeer, scoff, mock, scorn, fool, laugh). As an archetypal behavior, it results from one’s ability to focus (Sarah) with one’s spreading out so as to take notice of and give forth to things stirred up (Avraham) – meaning “one’s bringing things to light in being meticulously alert to what is around.”
24 – Yaaqov (יעקב) from the root \aQaBh (עקב) which essentially means “to twist around.” Across the Semitic languages, this root is used to mean “to constrain, to follow, to come after, to trace, to approach closely, to investigate, to criticize, and to grab the heel (supplant).”
25 – YoM (יום – day), from HaMaH (המה – to stir up), literally means “time period causing a stirring.”
26 – here, presently (פוה PoH) Allegorically: presently in the sense of mentally present. From PeH (פה mouth) which evolved from B’ (ב – in) > BoW/ (בוא – to go / come in). Related to Arabic Fy (פי) at, near, by, on, in, within, during, about, concerning, regarding, in the company of.
27 – 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
28 – nation (גוי – GoY) literally to draw inward, arch inward; Arabic cognate passionately stirred (love / grief)
29 – heart (לב LaeBh) Allegorically: willing determination. Technically this root evolved from לוה (LaWaH) to wrap around, cling, escort, lend-borrow. Therefore, LaeBh means “well joined” > center. Most words evolving from that mean to layer, but there are a few that have to do with the association of one’s heart with determination.
30 – a root (שרש ShoRaeSh) Allegorically: an at of behaving rigidly. Derived from the root SaRaH (שרה) which does not exactly mean to wrestle, nor does its associated noun exactly mean princess. It means to fix on something either visually or physically. Therefore, a root (שרש ShoRaeSh) is something physically fixed in place.
31 – to sprout (פרה PaRaH) Allegorically: what is scattered about. Literally means to divide off from or disengage from. Thus: PeRy (פרי) fruit (that disengages from the tree); PaRa/ (פרא) wildly (disengaged) being > to go wild; PaRaR (פרר) as seen in Akkadian: dissolved-broken up-powerless-confused-disperse-scatter-smash-distributed-roam around; PaRPaR (פרפר) to crumble, throw about, convulse; PaRa\ (פרע) to be-make disorderly, chaotic; PaRaKh (פרך) to divide > crush > rub; PaRaQ (פרק) to break off, loose; PaRaM (פרם) to shred; PaRaSh (פרש) to separate, scatter; PaRaS (פרס) to split, tear apart; PaRaZ (פרז) to set apart, detach (Arb) > open village; PaRaD (פרד) to divide, separate, set apart, dislocate; PaRaTs (פרץ) to scatter, burst forth > breach; PaRaT (פרט) to break off from > pluck. A bull or cow are described as PaR(aH) because it is disengaged from the rest of the herd.
32 – bitter-poisonous weed, gall (ראש Ro/Sh). Probably more correctly spelled רוש and related to the root RaShaH (רשה) to lose liquid, to drip, flow down, ooze fluid. However, by spelling it (ראש Ro/Sh), the allegory can thus be from: head (ראש – Ro/Sh) possibly derived from Ra/aH (ראה – to see) which explains the vestigial aleph. Contextually, this always works allegorically as well.
33 – wormwood, bitter and extremely unpleasant (לענה La\aNaH) Allegorically: ineffectively chewing over experience. Related to La\a\ (לעע – to cause to swallow, swallow down (Ob1:16) (Jb6:3)), but literally meaning to jaw > chew voraciously. Related to ToLa\ (תולע – worm), related to YaLa\ (ילע). The root לוע jaw (MSnhdrn58b), throat / gullet (Pr23:2) evolved from “two jaws” (well joined) > cheeks (לְחָיַיִם L’HhaYym); related to LuaHh (לוח board, plank), this root means “to join together and to be well joined” evolved from (לוה – LaWaH) meaning “to cling to or join to.”
34 – to forgive (סלח SeLaHh) Allegorically: what lifts off. The root evolved from SaLaH (סלה) to draw up / away, to discard (Ps119:118), (piel) to discard, overthrow (Lm1:15) which evolved from SaLaH-ShaLaH (שלה). The most roots Sh.L.literally mean “to suspend, dangle.” For example, שולים – skirt, train, abdomen; שלה – to be lax, relax; שלל to let fall; שלח – to let loose (Syr – slough off) > send forth > שלך to cast; שלם – to suspend > complete, submit to > peace, compensate; (שלג – SheLeG) snow (lit: what is suspended in the air).
35 – anger (אף /aPh) Allegorically: confronting presentation. Many cognates are /aNaPh (אנף) and this is consistent with the verb “to be angry” (Dt1:37;4:21;9:8,20)(KgI8:46)(Is12;1)(Ps2:12;79:5). Additionally, when prefixed the Peh has a dagesh further confirming the loss of the letter nun. This root possibly derived from הניף to swing back and forth, with /aNaPh (אנף) being the intermediary to ענף branch. However, /aNaPh (אנף) could just as easily be derived from /aNaH (אנה) to impose oneself. The allegorical idea of confronting presentation comes from the root /aPh (אף – nose, face, brow) which could very well be completely unrelated. Nevertheless, /oPhy (אופי) character, seems to be related to that.
36 – man / husband (איש – /eeSh). Originally meaning husband, meaning one who persists, it evolved to mean man. It is related to /aeSh (אש – fire) meaning persistent existence. Allegorically, it means (mental) persistence.
37 – name (שם – ShaeM) from SuM-SYM (שום – שים to put, place, impose, label). It has the allegorical meaning of the applying or application of something.
38 – under, rear-end (תחת TaHhaT) from NaHhaT (נחת to press down upon / bend, to descend, come down); which evolved to HhaTaH (חתה – to push down; (press down into, bring down into) to scoop up) and then ChaTaT (חתת to press down upon, to subdue, and to frighten)
39 – heaven, sky (שמים – ShaMayim) from SuM-SYM (שום – שים to put, place, impose, label, arrange). Allegorically: the many things put forth in experience.
40 – land (ארץ – /eReTs) evolved from RaTsaTs (רצץ to run upon / crush), which evolved from RuTs (רוץ to run) > RaTsaH (רצה to run toward, show favor). The allegory comes from a related noun /aRTsuT (ארצות one’s disposition, how a person runs-shows favor). Related roots evolved from RuTs (רוץ to run) > RaTsaH (רצה (to run toward) > show favor); RaTsaHh (רצח) (run through) > kill; RaTsa\ (רצע) to run > bore through; RaTsaD (רצד) (run with the eyes)(Arb, keep one’s eyes upon) > to spy out, observe with envy (Ps68:17); RaTsaPh (רצף)(to run into > crowd together) to inlay; MaRaTs (מרץ) to make run > go quick > hasten, provoke; RaTsaTs (רצץ to run upon / crush); \aRaTs (ערץ) to charge at > be terror driven, startled, frightened off, panicked
41 – sulfur, pitch (גפרית GaPhRiT) Allegorically: what tightly wraps around > contend with. From the Akkadian cognate (גפר): to contend, match strengths, be superior. The Hebrew verb means: to enclose, to line. Related to: GuPh (גוף) (draw inward / hold into oneself) Syriac: to take in a net, hunt, shut, fasten, captivate; GaPhaPh (גפף) to embrace, enclose (Jastro). Related to: vine (גפן GePheN); Arabic GaFaN (גפן): eyelid, bowl, grapevine; Syriac: to dig.
42 – MeLaHh – salt (מלח), evolved from the word MaLaH (fraying) literally meaning that which crumbles. Note מלחים withered, frayed garments (Jr38:11,12); as opposed to MaLaHh (מלח) – sailor / to sail which evolved from LWHh (לוח) to join > be well joined > committed > friendly > kind > graceful > balanced > balance > counter-balance.
43 – to burn (שרף SaRaPh) Allegorically: to extract and oversee. This root literally means “what is released > to make dissipate, to cause to secrete and draw out resin, to coat with resin.” It evolved from the root RaPhaH (רפה) to loosen and release. In Arabic the two related roots mean: (release>) (SaRaPh) to dissipate, squander, exceed all bounds, immodest, overdo, to be extravagant > (ShaRaPh) be highborn, noble, look down upon, oversee, supervision
44 – to seed, sow (זרע ZaRa\) Allegorically: to scatter and insert into. Related to seed (זרע – ZeRa\) meaning to scatter, but practically also suggests implantation > engagement. Evolved from ZaRaH (זרה) to scatter; which expanded into: ZaRaHh (זרח to shine, break out), ZeReD (זרד be brave, valiant) and ZaRaZ (זרז to speed up, urge and stimulate).
45 – to sprout (צמח TsaMaHh) Allegorically: squeezed through > elucidate. Syriac cognate: spring forth, shine, appear, make apparent, show, reflect, be enlightened; an elucidation. The root evolved from TsuM (צום wrung out > squeezed in > to fast) > TsaMaH (צמה) squeezing, compressing > snares, veil. Which evolved further to: TsaMa/ (צמא (wrung out, squeezed) > thristy); TsaMaHh (צמח (squeeze through) > sprout); TsaMaD (צמד (squeeze together) > fasten, join, attach, couple, cleave); TsaMaQ (צמק (wrung out) > raisins); wool (צמר TseMeR); TsaMaT (צמת to crush, destroy); TsaMTsaeM (צמצם to compress > retract); \aTsaM (עצם compress, dense, compact, bone, self).
46 – herbage (עשב \aeSeBh) Literally: to settle back into. Which evolved from ShuBh (שוב – to settle back > return, do again, stay, remain). It is related: ShaBhaH (שבה (settle back) > to take captive) YaShaBh (ישב – to settle back > sit, settle) and ShaBhaHh (שבח – to settle down, still), ShaBhaT (שבת to settle down, rest, cease).
47 – to overturn, destroy (הפך HaPhaKh) Allegorically: retreat. This root literally means “to change-turn the face” and therefore can mean: turn over, over turn, retreat, turn back, pervert, churn, change, exchange, be contrary and reneg. The root probably evolved from an unattested HaPhaH (הפה to change the face), which evolved from /aPhaH (אפה (change the face) > to bake).
48 – Sodom (סדם), brooding uncertainty. Based on allegorical context, DoM (דום) be still and silent, and SDM (סדם) in Arabic meaning affliction, sorrow, sadness, grief, nebula, and nebulous.
49 – Gamorah (עמורה), feeling overwhelmed. Based on allegorical context and Arabic copious, abundant, overflow, lavish, heap up, and to overwhelm emotionally.
50 – Admah (אדמה) no one knows why this town is so named, but allegorically its meaning is a negative connotation of a related root: ground (אדמה /aDaMaH) comes from the root DooM (דום) which means to be still. In Arabic אדם means to enrich bread with food / fat / condiment; fatty / shortening; dyed leather; hide; skin; surface, earth), In Akkadian אדם means to be engaged in conflict whereas in Amharic it means plot, conspiracy, coup d’etat, strike, boycott. Similarly, in Ugaritic the verb is used in the following line: “the cow lows for her calf (..) as they lament.” Based on comparitive Semitics, I believe lament is best replaced with “are intensely concerned, absorbed, preoccupied, obsessed, engrossed together.” Lastly, the related root דאם in Arabic means “to remain, persist, last, go on, continue, persevere, be devoted, permanence, incessant.”
51 – Ts’voim (צביים Ts’BhoYiM) Allegorically: acts of remaining rigidly firm despite desiring many things. The root TsaBhaH means to swell (צבה TsaBhaH) and to desire. It evolved from NaTsaBh (נצב to stand upright-defiantly-straight) and then evolved into: TsBha/ (צבא) army, assemble, wage war and the necessity to stand firm and be ready (Jb7:1) AND is related to: yellow (צהוב TsaHoBh)(probably from an unattested intermediary TsoBh (צוב)) literally meaning “to stand out, be ardent.” According to Jastro, there is a verbal form of this root meaning: to be defiant, jealous, angry, grieve, and provoke.
52 – father (אב /aBh) derives from /aBhaH (אבה) which in Hebrew means “to be willing to give forth of oneself,” whereas in Arabic it means “to take notice of.”
53 – work-serve-slave-worship-devote (עבד – \aBhaD) Allegorically, this root is used in the verb and noun to means “devote (attention).” Although originally as a noun meaning slave, the verb evolved to mean to work, serve, worship and devote. It evolved from /aBhaD (אבד), thus meaning “one lost (to slavery).”
54 – “that they did not acknowledge” – allegorically, this is the key to understanding what elohim acherim signifies. If God creates everything, then how could any form of guidance found in experience not be from God. Well if you follow guidance that you are unaware of, that is guidance not coming from God because to truly follow God requires that you are aware of what you are doing, the motivations and influences.
55 – curse (קללה Q’LaLaH) Allegorically: held in light esteem. Derived from QoL (קול voice (channeling)), words from QaLaH mean “to be light” or “to remove from the surface.” QaLaL (קלל make light of, to be swift, to curse > be vile). QaLaH (קלה roast (make light)); dried, light (קלקל Q’LoQaeL). In Syriac: קלקל means “to distort, distract, throw into confusion, bring shame upon; to be held in light esteem.”
56 – to write (כתב KaTaBh) literally means “to make an impression.” Where the verbs beginning with (כת) essentially mean “to press in with force.” Hence: KaTaL כתל (Arb- to press into, compact, mass); KaTaM כתם to stain; KaTaN כּתּן (Arb – (compress together > build up) linen); KaTaPh כּתף (Arb- (pressed together) be thick, dense, to condense; to shackle, (Hebrew – shoulder (joint)); KaTaR כתר to huddle, crowd in; KaTaSh כתש to crush; KaTaT כתת to smash
57 – book (ספר SaePheR) Allegorically: a recounting. Related to the verb SaPhaR (ספר to cut, trim, count, recount)
58 – this (זה Zeh; זאת Zo/T) from the verb ZaHaH (זהה) and literally means “what is visually radiant or apparent.”
59 – /aDaMah (ground – אדמה) comes from the root DooM (דום) which means to be still. In Arabic אדם means to enrich bread with food / fat / condiment; fatty / shortening; dyed leather; hide; skin; surface, earth), In Akkadian אדם means to be engaged in conflict whereas in Amharic it means plot, conspiracy, coup d’etat, strike, boycott. Similarly, in Ugaritic the verb is used in the following line: “the cow lows for her calf (..) as they lament.” Based on comparitive Semitics, I believe lament is best replaced with “are intensely concerned, absorbed, preoccupied, obsessed, engrossed together.” Lastly, the related root דאם in Arabic means “to remain, persist, last, go on, continue, persevere, be devoted, permanence, incessant.”
60 – word, thing (דבר DaBhaR); pestilence-plague (דבר DeBheR) Allegorically: what drives directly forward. 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 (מדבר – wilderness, place of flash floods) may simply mean “a place requiring direction or guidance,” the fact of geography and the frequent occurrence of flash floods suggests to me otherwise.
61 – blessing (ברכה B’RaKhaH), blessed (ברוך BaRuKh) Allegorically: excessive, excellent. From to bless, declare excellent (BaRaKh – ברך) quite literally means “to make excel” or “shower with abundance.” This root literally means “to make a clearing, to go clear through > be excellent, declare excellent.” BaRuKh – although generally translated as blessed, the most accurate translation would be excellent in the sense of exceeding all bounds, both in regard to esteem and material aspects. Variations in meaning of this root: to kneel (make a clearing), to make a clearing of trees (Jastro); B’RaeKhah (בריכה)(cleared of everything) a man- made pool, lake (SmII2:13;4:12); (piel) to greet (SmI13:10); greet, hail, holler at, accost (Pr27:14); to congratulate (CrI18:10); to curse, blaspheme, declare the horribleness of something (KgI21:10,13)(Ps10:3)(Jb1:11;2:5,9)(Talm. B’M 59b); Most of the roots with BaR (בר) literally mean to make a clearing, to clear away, or to go clear through, hence בור (clearing > pit), באר (clearing > well, to clearly elucidate), בער (to clear away > clear a field, burn), ברר (to clear away > sift), ברא (to clear away > to sculpt, create, carve, cut down), ברח (to go clear through > escape, bar), ברך (to go clear through > to excel, be / declare excellent; to make a clearing > kneel, pool), ברק (to go clear through > lightening); ShaBhaR (שבר) literally means “to go clear though” hence it means to break, break apart, shatter, smash, crash, to distribute-buy-sell provision (?broken pieces); and for a wave to break. However, its secondarily evolved form SaBhaR (שבר) means to contemplate, look to and hope for. There is an identical noun SheBheR (שבר) meaning “interpretation” or more correctly break down > analysis that indicates the transition between the two
62 – abdomen, belly (בטן BeTeN) literally to burst forth; related to בטה בוט to burst forth with words without restraint
63 – herd animal (בהמה – B’HaeMaH) This word evolved from an unattested root BoowM (בום) whose approximate meaning was to push into / between. Related to this root: BaMaH (במה) most often translated as height, but more specifically means bulge, protrusion, or haunches (as in Psalms 18:34); YaBaM (יבם) which in a very loose sense means to push in or intercede in behalf of (if one could intercede in behalf of a deceased brother in order to ensure progeny in his name); B’HaeMaH (בהמה) meaning one who pushes in or herd-animal, (which explains why the related word behemoth has come to mean brutish). From allegorical context, it tends to mean to push in so as to observe.
64 – PeH (פה mouth) which evolved from B’ (ב – in) > BoW/ (בוא – to go / come in)
65 – way, thresh (דרך – DeReKh). from DaRaKh (דרך) to tread, trample, thresh, walk about, guide and aim.
66 – commandment (מצוה – MiTsWaH) Allegorically: demands 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.
67 – ordinance (חוק HhoQ) Allegorically: act of channeling. from HhoQ – HhaQaQ (חוק חקק) literally meaning “to channel” but used to mean to carve, engrave, inscribe, draw, and portray. Its intensive form means “to set a limit, rule, and to decree.” The related noun HhaeyQ (חיק) means “bosom, gutter (channel).”
68 – judgment (משפט MiShPaT) Allegorically: a declared judgment or clarification. From PuT (פוט) to burst forth, therefore, make a declaration, which is usually a clarification or clearly stated instruction.
69 – to drive. Drive out. Thrust, banish (נדח NiDaHh) Allegorically: be compelled. Another meaning of the root: to be driven, compelled (Dt4:19;19:5;30:17)

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.
Related Topics
Related Posts
Comments