The Names of God

Basics in Kabbalah and Chassidut: The Names of God – Kel

Eleven Holy Names of God associated with the Sefirot

In Kabbalah, the Name Kel is generally associated with the sefirah of chesed (as is the Name Elokah). This relation is explicitly stated in Psalms (52:3): "the chesed of Kel is all the day."

The root "Kel " in Hebrew means "strength." Kel thus represents the strength of God's right hand to sustain, in His infinite benevolence, the reality which He created.

The name Kel is the first of God's 13 attributes of mercy, in accordance with the system of their enumeration in the Zohar and the writings of the Arizal.

The Name Kel, as joined with three other Names of God, represents the revelation of Divine providence in the three lower worlds ofBeriahYetzirah, and AsiyahKel Shakai in the world of BeriahKel Havayah in the world of YetzirahKel Adnut in the world ofAsiyah.

Kel = 31. The most important appearance of the number 31 in the Bible are the 31 Canaanite kings whom Joshua and the people of Israel conquered upon entering the chosen land. The Name Kel is thus associated with the Divine power to give (with His right hand) the chosen land (referred to as the "land of the right") to His chosen people, Israel. As explained by Rashi at the beginning of the Torah, our own power to conquer and inherit the land is an actual extension of God's outstretched hand in His gift of the land to us.

Iat-bash, the Name Kel transforms to tavkaf which equals 420. 420 = 6 times 70 (corresponding to the 70 "faces" of the Torah,each of which possesses 6 sides, or 6 "wings").

Kel, when written backwards, spells lo, "no." 70 = ken, "yes." The 6 "yeses" and 1 "no" correspond to the 6 weekdays of creation (when work is permitted–"yes") and the seventh day of Shabbat (when work is forbidden–"no").

The "full spelling" of Kel = 185, which equals hapanim, "the face." In Kabbalah, a "face" is a profile (one "cheek"). A full face possesses two times hapanim, 2 times 185 = 370, the secret of the 370 lights (sha nehorin) which shine from the Divine countenance.


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