The language we speak shapes not only what we say but how we think and the filters through which we listen.
Language of Life opens with a story told by Arun Gandhi asking his grandfather, Mahatma Gandhi, to explain peace. The explanation is grounded in the understanding and appreciation of organic life recreating itself—potentially profusely. When I met Arun, I shared with him how the whole story shared by his grandfather is embedded in the ancient Hebrew understanding of peace. It struck me that what we normally understand as a word, Shalom, when discerned through Suares’ letter-numbers, if a whole story. Perhaps every Hebrew ‘word’ is a story, and in the case of the Torah each portion’s one word title is, in fact, the essence of that portion. And if we interpret the whole portion with every letter-number connecting us with life, we get a radically different understanding of this most sacred text. Language of Life looks briefly at our Creation stories, and the possibility that perhaps our biggest loss from being enslaved in Egypt and struggling in the desert for 40 years was our connection to life through language.
One of the questions I wished to test when I read Suares’ work was whether the Cosmological letter-numbers drove the Genesis portion of the Torah. I selected the ‘Binding of Isaac’ as a path to my own revelation, and I wasn’t disappointed. My interpretation as told from Abraham’s perspective is taken directly from the book, and shown below.
- Written by Milt Markewitz
I first noticed the pattern of two Cosmological characters combining into what I believed was creating an Archetypal process when I was creating a Midrash (which means “an interpretation”) of the Genesis story, “The Binding of Isaac.” In the story there’s a line that’s generally translated as “Avraham journeyed from Kadish to Shir.” I’d heard it interpreted as either he literally traveled, or that it was a time of introspection.
Reading the story from the perspective of the Hebrew letters being used, I felt it was much more the latter. It seemed to be describing
Avraham’s profound revelation of the Cosmic forces that created the capacity for birth, as shown by the Dallet in the word Kadish, and the Cosmic forces that created the capacity for fertilization, the Vav in the word Shir.
It seemed to me that the story is telling us that when these two capacities were combined, Avraham could understand the Archetypal Life-Death-Life continuum, Aleph, and the Archetypal Universal Life, Hay, from the combination of which emerges all manifest experience, all that is Existential.