Sunday, February 5, 2012

The Power in Your Hands

The Hebrew word for hand is "yad" which has a gematria value of 14. Each hand has five fingers, which together contain 14 bones - four of the fingers each have three bones, and the thumb has two, bringing the total to 14.

The number of Hebrew letters found in the first verse of the Torah is 28. The Hebrew word for strength is ko'ach, also numerically equal to 28. Since each hand has 14 bones, both hands together contain 28 bones, representing the ko'ach of G-d.

Based on this, Rebbe Nachman teaches that every person has within himself the ability to arouse the power of Creation with his hands (i.e. his prayers). He taught that some people make motions with their hands during their prayers to help them intensity their concentration. Doing so is very beneficial. This is the intention of the Zohar [Tikuney Zohar #21] when it speaks of "hands that write secrets". Hand movements during prayers can actually inscribe secrets on High [Rabbi Nachman's Wisdom #75]

The five fingers allude to another kind of revelation: The Talmud speaks of Fifty Gates of Binah [Understanding], the 50th Gate being the level which was revealed by G-d in order to bring about the Exodus. This is the very same level that will be revealed at the time of the coming of Moshiach. It is this level that is alluded to in the five fingers of each hand.

Rebbe Nachman taught:

Each hand has five fingers. When two hands clap against one another, the five fingers of the right hand meet with those of the left hand, and vice versa. When right hand meets left, "five meeting five", makes a total of 25, and in the reverse meeting, when the left hand meets the right, it brings the total to 50. This "fifty" corresponds to the 50th Level which is the source of salvation. Therefore, clapping our hands during our prayers arouses the power of salvation and hastens the Redemption.

Source: "Anatomy of the Soul" - Chaim Kramer
from the writings of Rebbe Nachman of Breslov

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