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Alphabet Soup for the Soul

Going to try something a little different for the next 22 weeks.

Let me know what you think.

Alphabet Soup for the Soul:

What does nourish the soul, really? In Proverbs, we learn that a “human soul, nishmat adam, is a candle of the Divine, ner hashem.” So what keeps that candle lit? According to an ancient source in Jewish mystical tradition, The Book of Creation [Sepher Yetzirah], Creation was not a one-time event taking place millennia ago. Creation is an on-going process in which Divine light-energy[אור] flows through twenty-two channels. Should the flow get interrupted, we could lose access to loving consciousness, we’d cease to exist and our candles would burn out.

Those twenty-two channels of divine energy are identified as the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet. A close look of Genesis 1 offers support for this reading. In the first verse, ‘Elohim creates את the heavens and את the earth, and saw… and said, ‘let there be light-energy, and there was light-energy.’ The word את is typically understood as simply a preposition indicating a direct object. It also happens to be spelled with the first and last letters of the Hebrew alphabet, the Aleph and the Tav, creating space for the following translation of those same Biblical verses:

With humanity’s higher purpose[1] in mind,

Elohim [God], created the alphabet, aleph to tav,

twenty-two symbols to serve as channels of divine energy

from the infinite realm of God to the finite world of creation.

With these letters, the heavens above and the earth below were created,

and the myriad forms of life on earth, and divine energy – consciousness and love –

came to be embodied in all life, and in soul of humankind in particular.

And it was good, very good.

So the human soul is the latest design of a receptacle of Divine energy and the letters of the alphabet are the conduits, the very channels through which this energy flows, providing humans with a means of accessing fuel to keep the candle burning.

So, in an attempt to nourish the soul,

what could be better than a nice bowl of alphabet soup,

delivered weekly into your in-box from heaven’s kitchen.

Here’s how it works. Each week, for twenty-two weeks, I'll post a new letter of the week.

With a poetic description of the letter, there will be a word that strives to embody the shape

or flavor (if you will) that the divine energy assumes when flowing through that particular letter/channel.

However, it does not stop there, we hope. It is then incumbent upon us to channel, in turn, that divine energy from our heart-mind-soul into our hands[2] and into the world around us.

So, each letter will be paired with a word,

and each word will be paired with a practice,

so that God will be paired with a partner, you.

WEEK 1 –

LETTER: א /Aleph is the silent awareness that knows I AM,

the breath of light that says ‘Amen’ in the darkness

of doubt and infinite possibility.

WORD: Faithful-Awareness / Emunah – AWE-wareness!

PRACTICE: Use “I AM” as a mantra, affirming the value of your existence unconditionally.

WORD-PLAY: Listen for thoughts or sentences that begin with “I am…”, and stop there. Turn “I am hungry,” or “I am full,” “I am happy” or “I am sad,” into simply “I AM!” Practice celebrating the fact that we exist, and that we are conscious of that existence. In so doing, may we grow our sense and experience of awe, our experience of the miracle [nes] of aware-ness itself, our awe-wareness.

[1] Or Torah, the guidebook for humankind to find its ‘way’.

[2] וקשרתם לאות על ידיך. / “And you shall bind [these words] as signs/letters upon your hands.” (Deut. 6)

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