There are twenty-two letters in the Hebrew Aleph-bet (alphabet). This brief overview will define three of them, Zayin, Chet, and Tet, going over the basics of their mystical interpretations. In Mormon Kabbalah, these letters are used for spiritual communication in ways that do not require one to be fluent in the language. These letters help us gain a direct spiritual communication going beyond mere words. Meditation with the letters is a common practice in Kabbalah to help facilitate spiritual growth.
While reading through these letters, look for the deeper meanings of each. All are also encouraged to study outside resources to deepen our understanding beyond what this simple text provides. As Kabbalists study and meditate over the years, we gain greater incites to the inner spiritual meanings of the letters.
Zayin (or zain, or zayn, or zay) is the seventh letter the Hebrew Alphabet. It signifies the number seven, or 7,000 in years. Shaped like a sword, Zayin is a paradoxical word. It means “sword,” or “weapon,” yet is derived from a root word meaning “nourishment,” or “substance.” This seemingly contradictory riddle is solved, however, as we are nourished by the sword of truth found within the Word of God (Ephesians 6:17). This allows Zayin to be the symbol of spirit, sustenance, and struggle. Representing the seventh day, the Sabbath, Zayin brings us rest and spirituality, the completion of teshuvah., the 7 days of our spiritual creation.
Signifying both the six days and six directions of physical reality, it also adds a unique seventh principle; the spirit within that activates everything physical. Thus Zayin represents the source of all movement; the impregnating principle, bringing to life all creation. Yet is is also the source of rest. Zayin is drawn with a crown, representing the direct light of the Creator coming down to the physical world.
Zayin represents the struggle between opposites, the struggle for sustenance, the struggle for existence. It reminds us of the very struggle between our worldly nature, and the God created spirits within as we reject worldliness (Egoism) for Godliness (altruism). It helps us find the balance needed to harmonize between the natural and the spiritual. It helps us understand the need for a day of rest after six days of working on teshuvah. and the creation within.
Chet (or Cheth, or Het, or Heth, or Khet, or Kheth) is the eighth letter the Hebrew Alphabet. It signifies the number eight. Het represents infinite possibilities, reminding us of our ability to rise and go beyond our human nature. In Kabbalah it is related to “neshamah,” the Hebrew term for soul, literally translated as “breath” (Genesis 2:7). Thus it also represents our free agency to choose good (light, freedom) or evil (darkness and slavery to Ego).
Chet is an eternal revolving gateway, it gives us the power to enter the higher levels, and access to the mysteries of God, and a return to human consciousness. In the ancient world, Chet actually looked like a ladder, as in Jacob’s ladder. Representing the number 8, it also signifies transcending nature, moving to the next stage of teshuvah. in the form of the seven days of the creation. It is essential that we humans break through Ego, to spiritual realization. As we grow in Christ, Chet may be used to guide us from Grace to Grace.
Tet (or Ṭeth) is the ninth letter of the Hebrew Alphabet. It signifies the number nine (the number of man), or 9,000 if followed by an apostrophe. Teth literally means “basket” or “nest.” It is the symbol of the good in God’s creation. Dealing with purity and impurity, Tet teaching us to choose the light. More than this, it also helps us see the hidden good to be found when what we perceive to be “bad things” happen.
Tet’s essence is feminine; representing femininity and pregnancy, as full term pregnancy requires nine months. It reminds us of Chesed, the kindness and mercy in God’s creation (1 Nephi 3:40-41, 46-64 RAV,11:3-4, 8-22 OPV). Everything is eternal, thanks to Christ’s atonement nothing has to be lost. Thus, Tet is both the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of Good and Evil, and it is the fruit of the Tree of Life. By knowing good from evil we may separate the light from the darkness. By choosing the light, Christ cleans and purifies us, erasing bad deeds that were caused by our slavery to Ego. Tet allows for teshuvah.