The Sons of Israel

These are the Hebrew Word Pictures for names Jacob/Israel, Rachel, Leah and their 13 children (12 sons and one daughter).

The Twelve Sons of Jacob, the father

Jacob (Supplanter) – Hebrew,  Ya’akov or יעקב

Yod, Ayin, Kof, Bet – ‘seen as the least in the house’

Israel (Overcomer) – Hebrew, Yisra’el or ישראל

Yod, Shin, Resh, Alef, Lamed – ‘hand destroys the first shepherd’

 

Rachel and Leah, the Mothers

Rachel (Ewe, female sheep)  Hebrew, Rachel or רחל

Resh, Chet, Lamed –  ‘head authority in the inner room’.

Leah (Weary or tired) –  Hebrew Leah or לאה

Lamed, Alef, Hey –  ‘behold the first strength’.

 

Leah gives birth to six sons and one daughter.

1. Reuben (See, a son!) – Hebrew, Reuven or ראובן

Resh, Alef, Vav, Bet, Nun – “head strength is secured to the house of life’

Reuben was the firstborn of Jacob.

 

2. Simeon (Hearing) – Hebrew, Shim’on or שמעון

The root is related to the word, Shema or Hear.

Shin, Mem, Ayin, Vav, Nun – “consume the chaos the eye ties to life”

 

3. Levi (Joining) – Hebrew, Levi or לוי

Lamed, Vav, Yod – “shepherd joined to the hand”

 

4. Judah (Praise) – Hebrew, Y’hudah or יהודה

Yod, Hey, Vav, Dalet, Hey – “behold the hand bound, behold the door”

 

9. Issachar (Hire, reward) – Hebrew Yissakhar or יששכר

Yod, Shin, Shin, Kaf, Resh – “hand consumes doubly, allowing head”

 

10. Zebulun (Living together) – Hebrew Z’vulun or זבולן

Zayin, Bet, Vav, Lamed, Nun – “house weapon that ties shepherd to life”

 

Daughter, Dinah (Controversy over rights) – Hebrew Dinah or דינה

Dalet, Yod, Nun, Hey – “finished work of the door (hand) behold life’

 

Bilhah, the maid of Rachel, gives birth to two sons.

5. Dan (Judged) – Hebrew, Dan or דן

Dalet, Nun – “door of life”

 

6. Naphtali (My wrestling) – Hebrew, Naftali or נפתלי

Nun, Peh, Tau, Lamed, Yod – “life flows from the mouth sign of the shepherd’s hand’.

 

Zilpah, the maid of Leah, gives birth to two sons.

7.  Gad (Good fortune) – Hebrew, Gad or גד

Gimel, Dalet – “raised up at the door”

 

8. Asher (Happy)- Hebrew, Asher or אשר

Alef, Shin, Resh – “first consumes the head”

 

Rachel, gives birth to two sons (one in this parashah; another in the next)

Mandrakes

The Hebrew word translated as mandrake is דודים (dudim) meaning ‘love plant’.  It is a Mediterranean herb (Mandragora officinarum) that includes some of the most poisonous plants such as nightshade, jimsonweed, tobacco and, paradoxically, some of the most common vegetables such as potatoes, tomatoes, green pepper, and eggplants.

The plant consists of several large, wrinkled, dark green leaves that lie flat upon the ground forming a rosette. In the center of this rosette a cluster of attractive purple flowers appears in the winter. The root of the mandrake may be several feet long and weigh several pounds. It has bizarre often human-like shapes and for this reason is highly regarded by the superstitious.  The root of a mandrake was used especially to promote conception, as a cathartic, or as a narcotic and soporific.   The mandrake often grows as a weed in wheat fields.

11.  Joseph  (May he add) – Hebrew, Yosef or יוסף

Yod, Vav, Samech, Peh – “hand ties and supports mouth (like a beginning river)”

 

12. Benjamin (son of the right hand), Hebrew Benyamin or בנימין

Bet, Nun, Yod, Mayim, Yod, Nun – “house of life is finished (closed hand), chaos of life is finished (closed hand)

Putting the word pictures of the children of Jacob all together:

The strength of the shepherd is secured to the House of Life.  It consumes the chaos that binds the eyes to life.   The shepherd is bound (by nails) the finished work.  Behold the finished work, the nails, the door, behold.  The door is life.  Life flows from the mouth (words), a sign of the shepherd’s finished work and raises up the pathway.  Strength consumes the head, but the hand allows the the finished work to be the weapon of destruction securing the shepherd to life.  The finished work supports the words.  The House of Life is finished; the chaos of life is finished.  Behold life, the finished work of the hand, the pathway.

©2013 jsixrock

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