Another anomaly along the way

Petach 56 is also arcane, so we’ll again spell it out before presenting it as we did above for 55. This Petach is here to explain an anomaly and to reiterate a point. (Neither of these Petachim really add to our understanding of the Kabbalistic system itself to be sure, but Ramchal felt the need to address their issues since they’re contained in Ari’s writings, and they still and all do bolster the major theme of everything alluding to its source.)

We pointed out in the last Petach that the four names of AV, SaG, MaH, and BaN all allude to their source, which is Erich Anpin, since each has a hidden reference to it (see there), while having its own unique function.

Yet there’s an anomaly here. MaH doesn’t have an intrinsic function of its own: like Nukveh and Malchut to which it’s analogous, MaH is a passive receptor rather than an independent actor. So it doesn’t seem to be like AV, SaG, and MaH on that level. But the point is that it, too, alludes to its source AV. As Ramchal explains in his comments here, “No offshoot (i.e., none of the four names) can help but be subsumed under Erich Anpin, which is its root. For even BaN, which doesn’t have its own particular AV (which AV, SaG, and MaH do), nevertheless has the AV that exists in it by virtue of the fact that it’s a spelling-out of the Tetragrammaton”, i.e., it includes the simple quadruple form of Y (worth 10), Y-H (worth 15), Y-H-V (worth 21), and Y-H-V-H (worth 26) that total 72 altogether, which is the value of AV.

Here’s the Petach itself with explanation.

Although the quadrupled number representation of the Tetragrammaton written out as Y, Y-H, Y-H-V, and Y-H-V-H, which is, i.e., which equals the value of, AV which is 72, is contained in all of the names of AV, SaG, MaH, and BaN, as was pointed out in the last Petach, still and all the point must be made that only what’s particular to each name is considered intrinsic to it. But in the case of BaN which doesn’t have its own unique value it’s true that what’s there, i.e., the simple spelling-out of Y-H-V-H, is considered intrinsic to it. This shows that each name has the same value at first in its simple layout, because this is its essential makeup.

But when their letters are filled out and become AV, SaG, MaH, and BaN, their values change, and they become different from one another, each name is given a value of its own based on its specific function. And BaN, which doesn’t have a specific function but takes what’s given it instead, has no other value than the simple spelling of Y-H-V-H spelled-out, and it joins in with the others in the fact that it at least has the Tetragrammaton’s original general value.

(c) 2013 Rabbi Yaakov Feldman

Feel free to contact me at feldman@torah.org

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