Shema Israel - Unity that comes from Hearing

Most of us know the Shema Israel and its translation. The Kavenah of the Shema is almost infinite as we will see. Today we are only doing the first two verses and also one verse that not everyone says.

  • Please open this link to the full Shema
  • and look at the first three lines.

    The first two or three lines of the full Shema is called the small Shema. We say these two lines as a booster rocket to elevate us out of our sluggish morning state. Until you learn additional words of the Shema, please say these two lines frequently during the morning and evening. It will always boost your energy level. Please do not say it during the afternoon as the Shema is connected to Chesed while Gevurah is reigning during the afternoon.

    Here they are in Hebrew - line 1 first

    אל מלך נאמן


    El Melech NeEhman


    God is a Faithful King


    The Shema has 248 words. One for each of the 248 body parts of the human body. There are also 248 positive Mitzvot, thus each word of the Shema connects to both a body part and a positive Mitzvah.

    There is just one problem. There are only 245 words in the Shema. So some people say three words before the reading/saying of the Shema and other people repeat the last three words of the Shema. No one does both.

    Please note the first letters of these three words spell the word Amen. The meaning of Amen and its kavenah will be taught later. Along with the first Blessing that i teach you.

    Hebrew for what is normally called the first line of the Shema. It is written in the Torah at Devarim Chapter 6 Verse 4 and it has two large letters within it.

    שמע ישראל יהוה אלהינו יהוה אחד


    Shema Israel HaShem Eloheinu HaShem Echa.....d


    Hear O Israel, HaShem is our God, HaShem is One


    It is most important to lengthen the last syllable of the word Echad.

    This verse is considered Zeir Anpin since it has the word Israel within it.

    Please notice the large letters. The Ayin means eye and represents the concept of vision or seeing becoming unified with the sense of hearing which is expressed in the word Shema. Vision represents Chochmah or Wisdom. Hearing represents Binah or Understanding. We are drawing the Light of Healing from the unified aspect of the constant zvug of Chochmah and Binah.

    The Dalet means doorway and represents Malchut. Again we are unifying the higher worlds with our lower physical world.

    Together the Ayin and Dalet spell the word Ehd which means witness. Israel is being a witness to the unification of all aspects of HaShem which is all aspects of creation.

    Always say this line in a whisper

    Hebrew for what is normally called the second line of the Shema

    ברוך שם כבוד מלכותו לעולם ועד


    Baruch Shem Kavod Malchuto LeOlam VaEd


    Blessed be the Name of His Honored Kingdom Forever and Ever.


    This line is considered connected to Malchut due to the word Malchuto being included in the verse.

    This verse acts as an electrical ground wire to ground any excess metaphysical energy that was drawn by the verses and which your vessel was of insufficient size.

    General Kavenah

    When saying these two verses we are unifying Zeir Anpin and Malchut.

    We are drawing the Light of Healing through this unification of Zeir Anpin and Malchut.

    There are many ways to translate the Shema. Some of them actually make heretical statements that violate the unity of HaShem. Here is one. "Listen, Israel is God; Our God is HaShem, who is one!". Actually when we understand the Trope (the marks in the Mesorah that teaches us to chant the words) it is impossible to translate this verse this way.

    We can discuss the trope another time. Right now i will just explain that there are two types of trope categories. One tells the chanter/reader to string the words together and one tells the chanter/reader to pause similar to a period or semicolon or colon does in English. The trope under the word Shema tells the reader to not pause so that he can never mean listen and Israel are separated in the meaning. I hope this is clear without a lot of explanation that we do not have time for.

    Kavenah for the word Shema - שמע

    Shema can be read as Shem Ayin which translates as "Name of Eye". Ayin or eye is a code word in Kabbalah for Chochmah which is the Sifirah of Wisdom.

    Ayin has a gematria of 70 which makes the word translate as Name of 70. This relates to the 70 Nations of the world which are balanced by the Nation of Israel the next word.

    Shemah has a gematria of 410 which is the same gematria of the word Kadosh which means Holy.

    The Ayin maybe substituted by a Hay as they come from the same part of the mouth, as taught in the Hebrew Letters Class. We then have the letters of the 5th Name of 72 Names of God Mem Hay Shin. It is from this understanding that the Kabbalists teach that saying the Shema is bringing the Light of healing.

    Kavenah for the word Israel -ישראל

    Israel is an acronym for all of the Patriarchs and all of the Matriarchs. The Yood stands for Yitzhak and Yaacov. The Shin stands for Sarah. The Reish stands for Rachel and Rifka. The Aleph stands for Abraham. The Lamed stands for Leah.

    The word Israel is composed of two words Yashar El. Yashar means straight and El means God at the level of Binah. Israel is therefore the straight path to God. This is the true meaning of translation of Chosen People or Am Segulah.

    Israel has a gematria of 541 which is a prime number. Paul Case teaches that a prime number that totals to 10 (5 + 4 +1 =10) indicates solidarity and impregnability.

    541 is also 540 + 1. שמר + א is translated as guard or keep unity. This is the role of the Jewish Nation called Israel. This is the purpose of the Stating of the Shema which was added to the prayers when it was necessary to replace the Esser Debrot, which is also a good thing to say daily.

    541 is also 100 + 441. These numbers correspond to the words Yamayim meaning Seas and Emet meaning truth. Seas is a code word in Kabbalah for Torah. Therefore Israel stands for the Truth of the Torah.

    Kavenah for the word HaShem -יהוה

    I think you can appreciate that this Kavenah applies to both the third word and the fifth word. In one of the meditations the third word connects to Chochmah and the fifth word connects to Zeir Anpin. This meditation is to repeat the 6 words over and over again with the following Kavenah. Shema Israel is Keter; HaShem is Chochmah; Eloheinu is Binah; HaShem is Zeir Anpin; Echad is Malchut in which one flows from Chesed through Gevurah through Tiferet through Netzach through Hod through Yesod to Malchut all while saying the lengthened Echad.

    Of course there are many additional Kavenot associated with the Name HaShem, that are too many to bring at this time. As we say additional meanings and kavenot through out the classes feel free to bring them into your own kavenah for the Shema.

    Kavenah for the word Eloheinu -אלהינו

    Eloheinu translates as Our God. Within this word is the letter sequence of one of the 72 Names of God Yood Lamed Hay. This Name is a direct connection to Chesed or Loving Kindness while the Name of God itself connects to the Left column of the Tree of Life. Without this sequence representing HaShem's mercy no one could withstand the cause and effect of our own actions.

    Kavenah for the word Echad -אחד

    Echad has a gematria of 13 and means one or unity or oneness. Other words that have this gematria are Ahava which means love; and Deaga which means caring.

    The first two letters spell the word brother Ach. The third letter means doorway. The doorway to brotherhood is through unity or The doorway to unity is through brotherhood.

    We have just scratched the surface for these Kavenah. There are also many Midrashim dealing with these two verses and why they are said and what they mean. There will be more to follow as we do the rest of the 248 words of the Shema in later classes.

    Until you add more words to your Shema (through knowledge and understanding) please say it at least once per day and preferably three times per day. Once in the Morning; Once in the Evening; and Once just prior to bed.

    Yichudim Revealed in Daily Zohar 1231 regarding Shemah Israel

    Rabbi Shimon teaches us a secret unification (Yichud) from this verse;

    We take the first two letters of the first word and the first two of the last word and bring them together.

    שם אח

    Then we move the Alef to the beginning

    א שמח

    The new word means “I will rejoice”

    Then we add the two large letters ע and ד for the complete unification, that means “I will rejoice forever”

    א שמח עד

    The root of the word rejoice is שמח, ‘happy’ and that is the same root as משיח , Mashiach. Rabbi Shimon cried and laughed saying that in the generation of Mashiach this secret can be revealed.

    chanoch's Commentary

    Another translation can be "1 Happy Witness!

    There are deeper secrets here that connect us to the secrets of the Tefilin and the upper three Sefirot. Just by visualizing the process, we ‘shift’ the energies of the letters to form the unification that draws the light into our lives. It should be with tears of joy as Rabbi Shimon expressed himself. The tears represent the desire to connect to the level of Chokmah and the joy is to fill the heart with the light and spread it to the entire body as we studied in previous Daily Zohars.

    Summary of what you have been taught so far.

    Order of the Morning Prayers

    Modeh Ahnee

    Binding of Yitzhak - Short Form

    13 Attributes of Arich Anpin

    Short Form Shemah Israel

    Ana Bekoach

    Tikun HaNefesh

    Review both of the 72 Name Charts

    Ashrai Yoshvay

    Shemah Israel - short Form

    Your Personal Prayers

    Torah Service

    11 Letter Name for Healing - Mishabayrach

    Ashrai Yoshvay - Second Reading

    Order of the Afternoon Prayers

    Ashrai Yoshvay - Third Reading

    Ana Bekoach

    13 Attributes of Zeir Anpin

    Your Personal Prayers

    Friday Afternoon Service

    Ashrai Yoshvay - Third Reading

    Ana Bekoach

    13 Attributes of Zeir Anpin

    Your Personal Prayers

    Shir HaShirim

    Evening Service

    Shema Israel- Short Form

    Kabbalat Shabbat

    Shabbat Evening Service

    Shema Israel - Short Form

    Order of the Evening Holiday Prayer

    Draw the Energy of the Holiday

    Your Personal Prayers

    Night Time Ritual

    Dream Question

    Shema Israel - Short Form

    Ana Bekoach