TODAH RABBAH is from the Hebrew, meaning THANK YOU (Alcalay, R. The Complete Hebrew English Dictionary. Jerusalem: Massada. 2758).
The Hebrew letters featured on in this painting are:
in the first word Tav Vav Dalet Hey TODAH THANKS, GRATITUDE (Alcalay, R. The Complete Hebrew English Dictionary. Jerusalem: Massada. 2758);
in the second word Resh Beit Hey - RABBAH TO MULTIPLY, INCREASE, MUCH (Alcalay, R. The Complete Hebrew English Dictionary. Jerusalem: Massada. 2390).
TODAH RABBAH THANK YOU VERY MUCH.
Each of the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet has a special meaning and a story to tell. Here a few brief ones about the letters on this painting.
TAV is the 22nd letter in Hebrew alphabet the last letter. It has a numerical value of 400. TAV means MARK, SIGN. In 1500 B.C.E. the TAV was written as an X. Perhaps this contributed to its meaning. TAV makes a sound like the T in Tall. The TAV is composed of a DALET and a NUN.
God said to the Angel Gabriel: Go set a TAV MARK - on the foreheads of the righteous so that they will be protected (Shabbat 55a).
The letters of EMET ALEPH MEM TAV are located far apart in the alphabet 1st, 13th and 22nd respectively because TRUTH in found infrequently - at elongated intervals (Shabbat 104a).
Truth encompasses everything ALEPH to TAV, from BEGINNING to END, from BIRTH to death. EMET ALEPH MEM TAV. ALEPH MEM indicates EEMAH MOTHER (birth). MEM TAV means DEATH. Everything from BIRTH to DEATH (Rabbi Mitchell Chefitz, author of The Seventh Telling, The Thirty-Third Hour).).
VAV is the 6th letter, has a numerical value of 6, and is constructed of a single vertical line. VAV means HOOK and makes a sound like the V in Victory. When used as a vowel, VAV can sound like a long `o or a long `u. Translated it means AND. It is the GREAT CONNECTOR. VAV appears in the Four Letter name of God.
The first word in Torah is Bereshit. It means IN A BEGINNING. If you divide Bereshit into bara and sheet, it means HE CREATED SIX (sheet is 6 in Aramaic). Six what? The 6 days in which creation was completed? The 6 Sephirot represented by the VAV - HESED, GEVURAH, TIFERET, NETZACH, HOD, YESOD? Six directions - east, west, north south, up and down? The letter VAV itself? (Kaplan, Aryeh. 1979. Tr. The Bahir. York Beach: Samuel Weiser. 30).
DALET is the 4th letter of the alphabet, has a numerical value of 4, means DOOR and makes a sound like the D in Delight. The DALET has the shape of an open door.
The conjunction of the two letters GIMEL and DALET indicates issuing forth
, GIMEL giving and DALET receiving (Zohar. 1984. Tr. Harry Sperling et al. New York: Soncino. 1:244b).
HEY is the 5th letter of the Hebrew alphabet and has a numerical value of 5. HEY means BEHOLD. The HEY is constructed of a DALET and a YUD. HEY makes a sound like the H in Happy. HEY appears twice in the YUD HEY VAV HEY Name of God.
The heavens are the totality of twenty-two letters. The letter HEY produced the heavens to give them life and to water them and the earth (Zohar. 1984. Tr. Harry Sperling et al. New York: Soncino. 1:30a).
RESH is the 20th letter of the Hebrew alphabet and has a numerical value of 200. RESH makes a sound like the R in Radiant. RESH means BEGINNING or HEAD. When one spells out the letter RESH in Hebrew, it is RESH YUD SHIN. YUD and SHIN spell YESH - THERE IS. The letter RESH means BEGINNING. So it is possible to say that the RESH literally means THERE IS A BEGINNING.
Sefer Yetzirah divides the Hebrew Letters into 3 categories: 3 mothers ALEPH MEM SHIN, 7 doubles BET GIMEL DALET CAF PEY RESH TAV and 12 elementals HEY VAV ZAYIN CHET TET YUD LAMED NUN SAMECH AYIN TSADE KUF. According to the text, God created the world by means of these letters. The RESH is one of the doubles. He made the letter RESH king over Peace and He bound a crown to it and combined one with another and with them He formed
(Sefer Yetzirah. The Book of Creation. Tr. Aryeh Kaplan. 1990.York Beach: Samuel Weiser. 5, 95, 145, 147, 159, 176).
BEIT is the second letter of the Hebrew alphabet and its numerical value is 2. The meanings of BEIT are HOUSE, HOME, CONTAINER. The BEIT makes a sound like the B in Beautiful.
Torah begins with the letter BEIT. It was chosen for this honor because it is closed on top, bottom and on the right. It is open on the left, the direction of the text, to teach us to look forward and not backward, in our daily lives (Freedman, H. and Simon Maurice Tr. 1983. Genesis Rabbah. New York: Soncino P. 9). When the time came to create the world all the letters of the Hebrew alphabet presented themselves to God in reverse order. Each one requested that God place it first in creation. God rejected each one in turn. The BEIT then entered and suggested that it be put first since it represented the blessings - BRACHOT. God agree and thus BEIT was put first in the creation of the world (Zohar 1978. v.1. TR. Harry Sperling and Maurice Simon. London: Soncino. 12).
This work is accompanied by the kabbalistic explanation printed above.
The original 5x7 watercolor painting of this image is available.
mat color:: gray, blue
stock number:: tr2