Why The Letter Aleph is The Champion of The Universe

When God wanted to bear the universe, all the letters appeared and stood in front of him for an audition. This letter said:”Within me you will bear the universe”, and that letter said:”Through me you should create the universe”. The letter Alef א אלף stood aside and kept quiet.

Until God called him and told him:”Alef, Alef, why are you so quiet and say nothing ?”

The Alef replied and said:”Good Lord1 I don’t have any power to stand in front of you and say something”.

“Why?”, asked God.

And the letter Alef answered: “Since all the letters have bigger value2 and I count only a little value. The letter Beit ב counts in two, the letter Gimmel ג counts in three, the letter Dalet ד counts in four, the letter Heh ה counts in five, and I count only in one“.

God replied and told him:”Alef, don’t be afraid, for you are the head of all letters like a champion. You are one, and I am one, and the Torah is one: and within you I intend to give the Torah as a present to Israel, my people, and with you I want to open the ten commandments that say: Anochi Hashem Elohecha ‘אנכי ה’ אלהיך’ I am the Lord your God (Exodus 20:2). Anochi, is the head to all commandments, and Alef is the head of all letters.

According to Midrash of Rabbi Akiva’s Letters, Krakow addition, pages 2 – 4.

img: Attribution Some rights reserved by NASA Goddard Photo and Video

  1. Ribono shell Olam ריבונו של עולם []
  2. ב = 2, ג = 3, ד = 4 []
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About Eti Shani

Eti Shani was born in Israel and has been teaching Hebrew for more than 10 years with a special interest and experience in ancient Hebrew scriptures and culture. She's also the author of a series of books for novice and intermediate Hebrew learners.

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