Aleph Bet Workshop Resources

I lead a workshop on the AlephBet as a spiritual/magickal tool at Free Spirit Gathering this weekend, and decided to save a tree an not print resource sheet like I usually do. Instead, I opted for posting the resources here on the site, which is probably more useful anyway. Many of the books are ones that are a treasured part of my library, and others were ones I found in the process of creating the workshops.

I first started developing these two workshops two years ago, and I’m so grateful for the chance to lead them. Developing workshops often provides me with the much needed motivation (deadline) to really dig down and study a subject in depth. The process of preparing myself to lead these workshops has been wonderful, and I’m looking forward to continued study of the AlephBet and Hebrew.

Online Resources

Books

The Book of Letters - Amazon Affiliate Link
The Book of Letters by R. Lawrence Kushner

This book has been in my library for years.
It was one of my introductions to Kabbalah
and an invaluable resource.

 
 
 
 
 
 

The Book of Words - Amazon Affiliate LinkThe Book of Words by R. Lawrence Kushner
I bought this book right after I finished the Book of Letters.
I can’t recommend either book highly enough.
I also highly recommend anything by R. Lawrence Kushner.

 
 
 
 
 

Kabbalah Deck - Amazon Affiliate LinkKabbalah Deck by Edward Hoffman
This simple deck and book turned out to be a far
better resource than I thought they would.
The cards are great if you are unfamiliar with the letters,
and the book has really great information.
It’s not an in-depth resource, but when used with
The Book of Letters it can be a very useful one.
The deck does come with instructions on using it as
an oracle deck, but I’ve not really used it that way.

 
 
 

The Hebrew Alphabet a Mystical Journey - Amazon Affiliate LinkThe Hebrew Alephbet, a Mystical Journey by Edward Hoffman
This book covers much of the same material
as the book included with the Kabbalah Deck,
but it does have a few unique points and it’s very
affordable — so you might as well get both.

 
 
 
 

 
Sefer Yetzirah - Amazon Affiliate LinkThe Sefer Yetzirah – Aryeh Kaplan
This edition of the Sefir Yetzirah, a text
that is supposed to be thousands of years old
contains all four major versions and commentary.
If you are interested in Jewish Kabbalah then
it’s a book you should read every couple of years.
I also love that some theorize that it’s actually a
grammar book, not a mystical text.

 
 
 
 

Aleph Isnt Tough - Amazon Affiliate LinkAleph Isn’t Tough
This book is a grammar book. It’s a great
introduction to Hebrew for the beginner and
uses word roots, like we explored in the workshop,
to begin teaching simple words. It doesn’t delve into
mysticism, but it is framed in a Jewish perspective
and the words they chose to teach are common
ones from prayers and liturgy.

 
 
 
Hebrew Talk - Amazon Affiliate LinkHebrew Talk by Joseph Lowin
This book is subtitled, 101 Hebrew Roots and the
Stories They Tell. It’s a great read and wonderful
way to become more familiar with Hebrew.
It uses Hebrew roots to not only teach vocabulary,
but also Jewish ideas, concepts, and perspectives.
When coupled with a study of the meanings of the
letters on their own, I found reading this book to
be far more spiritual an experience than I’m sure
the author could have ever expected.

 
 
 
In The Beginning: A Short History of the Hebrew Language — Amazon Affiliate LinkIn The Beginning: A Short History of the Hebrew Language
This is a phenomenal book. It opened my eyes to
the evolution of Hebrew, and explained many things
I’ve wondered about. Now I can look at ancient
texts with a different perspective and I’m actually
finding translations easier due to the way the
book explained a few things in a very simple to
remember way. You don’t need to know Hebrew
well to enjoy this book. Just be interested in the
several thousand year history of a sacred language
— in about 200 pages.
 
 

That’s all folks!

[tags]books, resources, hebrew, kabbalah[/tags]

7 Comments

  1. Aron Gamman /

    Thanks Carly! Even for us not attending, I appreciate the list of resources. I've been focusing on learning more about Hebrew the last few years and appreciate anything new I can find.

    I honestly believe that by studying Hebrew we can reveal an authentic source for the deep river beneath the surface of the wisdom of our ancestors.

    This differs for me from some of the dogma that has gathered around the Jewish tradition, especially in the last few hundred years.

  2. Carly (Chava Chai - /

    No problem Aaron! I really believe we need to reclaim our right to this language. It's hard, and really scary to get started, but all you need to do is learn one letter to get started.

    If people are interested, I can make a PDF of the giant letter correspondence chart I put together.

  3. Shabat Shalom, everyone!
    I must say, as a native speaker of Hebrew, this is quite awkward for me. It's wierd (for me) to think of the mystical meaning of words & letters I use every day, all day long.
    I do feel that Hebrew is magical, poetic, unique, powerful and most of all – very much *ours*. That's a feeling that I get especially when reading the Bible or hebrew poetry.
    The difference between how I see Hebrew, and the way that american jews see it, is amazing and interesting for me.
    Regarding the giant letter correspondence chart – it would be interesting to read. Thanks!

    -Dotan.

  4. Carly (Chava Chai - /

    Dotan,

    I suppose it's very different for you. It's the language you speak, like English is for me. I'm still building my ability to actually speak Hebrew, so being able to focus on the meanings of letters and how those meanings can add meaning to root words and words, not only brings spiritual meaning — but linguistic for me. It's one way for me to reclaim the language — while I actually gain the ability to converse in it.

    I can't tell you how much I appreciate your perspective on things!

  5. Gosh, I was just looking through the archive and came across this.
    Ever thought of making this an online workshop? I for one would be up for it!

  6. Cat — funny you should ask. I'm thinking of trying a couple of online workshops this year. I wasn't thinking of this one — but I'll add it to the consideration list now.

  7. Keep me posted!