Friday, April 27, 2012


The Torah was given to Moses on Mount Sinai 3324 years ago in a fiery display.  The 304,805 letters were in a single string and Moses put the spaces between the words.  How do I know?  It says so in the Torah.  How do I know it’s true?  Since I have shown proof that the Torah is Hashem’s creation by verifying that the number of bits of information in the Torah that no human (or alien) could have known is infinite, I would say we have pretty good odds that it came from Hashem.  The most miraculous thing about the Torah is that it can be studied at different levels.  At the same time that we can read the simple meaning, the Torah can be studied at levels so deep it goes beyond human comprehension.  That, in itself, hints to the fact that it could not have been a product of human hands.

There are basically four different levels that the Torah can be studied.  The free encyclopedia on the web, Wikipedia, has a very good explanation that I thought I would use (it also saves me allot of typing).  Read this information and then I will get back to you (I’m getting a cup of coffee while you are reading):

Pardes (Jewish exegesis)

Pardes refers to (types of) approaches to biblical exegesis in rabbinic Judaism (or - simpler - interpretation of text in Torah study). The term, sometimes also spelled PaRDeS, is an acronym formed from the name initials of the following four approaches:
  • Peshat (פְּשָׁט) — "plain" ("simple") or the direct meaning.
  • Remez (רֶמֶז) — "hints" or the deep (allegoric: hidden or symbolic) meaning beyond just the literal sense.
  • Derash (דְּרַשׁ) — from Hebrew darash: "inquire" ("seek") — the comparative (midrashic) meaning, as given through similar occurrences.
  • Sod (סוֹד) (pronounced with a long O as in 'bone') — "secret" ("mystery") or the mystical meaning, as given through inspiration or revelation.
Each type of Pardes interpretation examines the extended meaning of a text. As a general rule, the extended meaning never contradicts the base meaning. The Peshat means the plain or contextual meaning of the text.  Remez is the allegorical meaning. Derash includes the metaphorical meaning, and Sod represents the hidden meaning.  There is often considerable overlap, for example when legal understandings of a verse are influenced by mystical interpretations or when a "hint" is determined by comparing a word with other instances of the same word.
Some thinkers, such as the Tolaat Yaakov, divide Pardes into Peshat, Remez, Din (law), and Sod. According to this understanding, Derash is divided into the homiletics, which are classified under Remez, and legal interpretations, which are classified under Din.



{Gen. 1,2) And the earth was empty (tohu) and formless (vohu).
Rashi - The Hebrew word 'tohu' means astonishment in English and the word 'bohu' means emptiness and next to emptiness. Thus the phrase is 'amazement and desolation'. This means that a person would be amazed and astonished at anything that was there.


(Gemara Makkos 2b) Q. A hint that the law of conspiring witnesses is in the Torah, where is it?
A. There is no such hint, because it is stated explicitly (Deut 19,19) You do to them what they conspired to do to the accused.

Q. But a hint that conspiring witnesses receive a whipping [if they cannot be punished by doing to them as they conspired] according to the Torah, where is it?
A. As it says (Deut 25,1-2) They caused the righteous to be righteous and the evil to be evil. And therefore the evil get whipped.

Q. Because they caused the righteous to be righteous and the evil to be evil. And therefore the evil get whipped?
A. But there must have been witnesses who testified that the righteous were evil.  And other witnesses came and caused the righteous to be known as righteous as they were before, and caused the previous witnesses to be known as evil. And therefore the evil get whipped.

Derash (Midrash)

(Gemara Makkos 23b) Rabbi Simlai deduced that there were 613 mitzvot (commandments) taught to Moses at Mount Sinai. The verse says that (Deut 33,4) Torah was given to us through Moses at Sinai. The gematria of Torah is 611. And one should add to them the first two of the Ten Commandments that were given directly by G-d to the Jews [this is known because they are written in the first person singular], making the total 613.


(Guide for the Perplexed, book2 section 30) "Adam and Eve were at first created as one being, having their backs united: they were then separated, and one half was removed and brought before Adam as Eve."  Note how clearly it has been stated that Adam and Eve were two in some respects, and yet they remained one, according to the words, "Bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh" (Gen. ii. 23). The unity of the two is proved by the fact that both have the same name, for she is called ishah (woman), because she was taken out of ish (man), also by the words, "And shall cleave unto his wife, and they shall be one flesh" (ii. 24). How great is the ignorance of those who do not see that all this necessarily includes some [other] idea [besides the literal meaning of the words].

Association with paradise

The Pardes system is often regarded as mystically linked to the word pardes (Hebrew פָּרְדֵּס), meaning orchard. "Pardes" is etymologically related to the English word "paradise", and the Quranic Firdaus (Arabic فِردَوس) among various other forms, in that they all share a common origin in an Old Iranian root, attested in the Avestan language as pairi.daêza-.  It occurs only three times in the Tanakh (Bible), namely, in Song of Songs 4:13, Ecclesiastes 2:5, and Nehemiah 2:8.  In the first of these passages it means "garden"; in the second and third, "park."  In the apocalypses and in the Talmud the word is used of the Garden of Eden and its heavenly prototype.

I’m back.  Isn’t this cool stuff?  You were wondering why I called this post Orchard, sorry to make you wait so long to find out; but, I thought I would keep you in suspense. 
A very important concept to learn from all this is that the Torah is the most complicated text in existence.  Many of us went to a Sunday school, as an example, and at the age of 5 we heard for the first time the Bible stories – Adam and Eve in the garden, Noah and the ark, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob’s escapades and, of course the story of the Exodus (which we know well from the movie version – extremely inaccurate).  We grow up and by the time we are 20 or 30 years old we are still stuck with the stories we learned at age 5.  Most people see the Torah at the Peshat level and go no further.  If I asked someone to tell me about Quantum Physics or corporate law or differential equations or brain surgery (that’s enough – we get the point), most would answer “Oh, I’ve never studied those subjects.”  But, if I ask them questions about the Torah or the Bible, everyone would have an opinion.  Even worse they would tell me “I’m skeptical as to whether that really happened.”  To know that the Torah and even all of Jewish scriptures are so deep and even beyond comprehension doesn’t compute -- after all “I read it once and know all the 5 year level Bible stories.”
I know that 10 lifetimes of Torah study would only scratch the surface of what the deeper meaning is.  What is even worser (I know, I made up another word) is we study in English which is Peshat personified.  The true, deeper meaning can only come from the mystical and miraculous letters of Hebrew.
There are no wasted words or even wasted letters in the Torah.  The 22 Hebrew letters of the alphabet are basically consonants.  (The first two letters are Alef, Bet hence the origin of the word alphabet – not the Greek alpha beta since Greek also came from Hebrew).  Vowel sounds are added by symbols beneath the letter which means that every word has several meanings by just changing the symbols.  The Torah has no symbols beneath the letters so a variety of translations are possible.  Sometimes the hidden message of a word would come from pronouncing the word differently.  Examples to this could fill volumes but for obvious time and bandwidth constraints (that’s web and computer talk) here’s a good one:

The story of Abraham taking his son Isaac to the alter, as Hashem commanded, includes a very interesting statement that Abraham tells his servant Eliezer and Ishmael who accompanied them to the foot of the mountain where the alter was.  He told them “You stay here with the donkey and I and the boy will go to that place.”  With the donkey?  No wasted words in the Torah?  The words in Hebrew for “with the donkey” are “eim hachamor” (ch is the guttural sound not available in English).  If I changed the vowel sounds under those words, not the spelling, (remember there are no symbols for vowels in the Torah) and pronounce it “am hachomaer” the translation changes to “a people of materialism.”  Abraham is saying a very profound statement that you are physical, materialistic beings of this world while he and his son are spiritual beings.  To complete the thought, Abraham says “I and the boy will go to that place.” The Hebrew word in the verse being translated as “place” is actually one of Hashem’s names which solidifies the idea of Abraham and Isaac approaching the spiritual.
Another type of coded message can be exemplified using the very famous verse of “An eye for an eye.”  Is it really telling us that by law, which the Torah accurately guides us, that if someone were to take out my eye (may Hashem protect me from such horror), that I can just reciprocate likewise (de-eye him)?  The actual translation is more accurately “an eye below, or substituted, by an eye.”  The message is: the three Hebrew letters for the word eye are in the alphabet below three Hebrew letters that spell the Hebrew word for money.  In other words it is hinted in the translation to substitute the letters according to the alphabet and you will see what the law is.  Physical damage is subject to monetary compensation.
One more example, that shows how, by putting the words together and making new spaces, one can gain insight into the meaning or even see prophecy.  In the book of Numbers, Moses is told by Hashem that “you are not getting this land because of your righteousness, but because of their wickedness.”  The paragraph ends off with the famous statement “you are a stiff-necked people.”  If you look at the Hebrew of that expression, remove the spaces and put in new ones you see the name “Arafat.”  Wickedness personified and a very prophetic message for our time.

OK, one more really cool example.  This is not even in the Torah but is in the commentary of Onkelus.  Onkelus, who lived about two thousand years ago, was a Babylonian who translated the Torah into Aramaic.  Aramaic was the language of Babylonia and also, the language that is used throughout the Babylonian Talmud to this very day.  His translation is so important that most books that we use of The Five Books of Moses include the Onkelus translation.  Aramaic uses Hebrew letters so Hashem even provided messages in Onkelus’s commentary.  My favorite example appears in the book of Numbers also where Onkelus is talking about judges but if you take on particular sentence and push the letters together and make new separations, you will read this sentence as “today will be Diana’s funeral.”  Every Shabbos throughout the year we read a portion of the Torah divided as such that over a year’s time we read the whole Torah.  The portion that we read on the day that Princess Diana was put to rest contained that sentence found in Onkelus.  There are no coincidences.  Hashem’s messages are very spooky sometimes.

We live in a time that we should look for deeper meaning.  We read the entire Torah every year but need to delve into its meaning in a more profound way.  It is our handbook of life and is truly our guide to total success and happiness.  We say during praying “It is a tree of life for those who grasp it, and all who support it are fortunate.  Its ways are ways of pleasantness and all its paths are peace. Cause us to return to You, Hashem, and we shall return; renew our days as of old.”  Such good advice – thank You, Hashem.


  1. On living a little grains of sand we are trying to think about the universe.

  2. "I have shown proof that the Torah is Hashem’s creation by verifying that the number of bits of information in the Torah that no human (or alien) could have known is infinite"

    Can you put the link to that here please?

    1. Refer to my post entitled Orchard 27 Apr and Soul 17 Apr,
      which talks about the encoding of information in the Torah.
      Click on these titles under Blog Archive on the right hand panel.