Tuesday, November 14, 2006

The Sign Gimel

The  Sign  Gimel Hebrew letterThe following paragraph is from Dr. Asher Eder’s book The Star of David, which was published in 1987 in English in Jerusalem by Rubin Mass Ltd. The publication here is courtesy of Oren Mass

This version includes corrections and new materials that do not appear on the printed version
If deprived of its upper yod, aleph not only loses its completeness, it changes into gimel, the third sign of the Hebrew Aleph-Beth
Gimel is the sign for camel (,גמל gamal in Hebrew), whose home is in the desert. The camel has the intelligence to get on well there, and to find nourishing oases. But it is not the Garden of Eden.
We may compare this "camel-like" state to the middle field of our Star without its six surrounding triangles. It would look rather meaningless and dreary, its outline being that of a cell in a honeycomb, which may symbolize the highly intelligent yet monotonous life in a beehive (or in a soulless technocracy)
If we look more closely at ,גgimel, and compare it with ,א aleph, we will note that its lower yod is smaller than that of aleph, while its wav straightens its head as if attempting to replace the missing upper yod. We can perceive this as a symbol of Nimrod's Babel. True, even ancient Babel tried to practice mutual charity ( ,גמילותgemiluth) to quite some degree, and knew about God's punishment for not practicing it; yet everything ended in confusion because of the denial of Shem, symbolized by the missing upper yod.
Just as gimel is not the last sign of the Hebrew Aleph-Beth, so is Babel neither the aim nor the end of human history. Our sages say that the sign ג, gimel, looks like a man running toward the next sign, or letter, in the Hebrew aleph beth, ד:

1 comment:

zeevveez said...

Dr. Eder's note:
As root word, gamal means also to ripen, to wean, to recompense, to do someone a good or bad turn.