Tree of Life

The Hebrew Alphabet

and the Paths on the Tree of Life

There are said to be 32 paths on the Tree of Life. The first 10 are the Sefiroth (not including Daat). The remaining 22 correspond to the lines or channels of energy that join the Sefiroth together. Each of these, in turn, corresponds to one of the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet.

  Name Value Meaning Class Joins Sefiroth Tarot Astrology  
  א Aleph 1 Ox Mother Keter - Khokmah Fool Air  
  ב Bet 2 House Double Keter - Binah Magician Mercury  
  ג Gimel 3 Camel Double Keter - Tifaret High Priestess Moon  
  ד Dalet 4 Door Double Khokmah - Binah Empress Venus  
  ה He 5 Window Single Khokmah - Tifaret Emperor Aries  
  ו Vav 6 Nail Single Khokmah - Khesed Hierophant Taurus  
  ז Zayin 7 Spear Single Binah - Tifaret Lovers Gemini  
  ח Khet 8 Fence Single Binah - Gevurah Chariot Cancer  
  ט Tet 9 Snake Single Khesed - Gevurah Strength Leo  
  י Yod 10 Fist Single Khesed - Tifaret Hermit Virgo  
  כ Kaf 20 Open hand Double Khesed - Netzakh Wheel of Fortune Jupiter  
ך Kaf Sofit 500
  ל Lamed 30 Ox-goad Single Gevurah - Tifaret Justice Libra  
  מ Mem 40 Water Mother Gevurah - Hod Hanged Man Water  
ם Mem Sofit 600
  נ Nun 50 Fish Single Tifaret - Netzakh Death Scorpio  
ן Nun Sofit 700
  ס Samekh 60 Prop Single Tifaret - Yesod Temperance Sagittarius  
  ע Ayin 70 Eye Single Tifaret - Hod Devil Capricorn  
  פ Pe 80 Mouth Double Netzakh - Hod Tower Mars  
ף Pe Sofit 800
  צ Tzaddi 90 Fishhook Single Netzakh - Yesod Star Aquarius  
ץ Tzaddi Sofit 900
  ק Qoph 100 Back of head Single Netzakh - Malkut Moon Pisces  
  ר Resh 200 Head Double Hod - Yesod Sun Sun  
  ש Shin 300 Teeth Mother Hod - Malkut Judgement Fire  
  ת Tav 400 Cross Double Yesod - Malkut World Saturn  

Some letters have two forms. The form known as Sofit (= Final) is the one generally used when the letter appears at the end of a word (bearing in mind that Hebrew is written from right to left!).

The numeric values are used to express numbers, but also to calculate the intrinsic value of words for the procedure known as Gematria.

The Class of letter distinguishes those letter having only one pronunciation (single) from those with with two (double) - for example, bet may be pronounced as English b or v; pe as p or f. The "Mother Letters" are considered special - in some sense, all the other letters are considered to be derived from them.

© 1999-2010 Glyn Williams
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