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Deeper than Technicalities

Rabbi Yehoshua Alt

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Rabbi Alt merited to learn under the tutelage of R’ Mordechai Friedlander ztz”l for close to five years. He received Semicha from R’ Zalman Nechemia Goldberg ztz”l. Rabbi Alt has written on numerous topics for various websites and publications and is the author of the books, Fascinating Insights and Incredible Insights. His writings inspire people across the spectrum of Jewish observance to live with the vibrancy and beauty of Torah. He lives with his wife and family in a suburb of Yerushalayim where he studies, writes, and teaches. The author is passionate about teaching Jews of all levels of observance.

Deeper than Technicalities

The following shows that which is deeper although it may seem technical.


1) The Nekuda of קָמַץ, kamatz represents Din, as it is closed to abundance (קמץ means close, shut[1]) whereas a פַּתַח symbolizes Chessed, as it is opened (פתח means to open) to bounty. For this reason, we don’t say משיב הרוח ומוריד הגָשֶם, He makes the wind blow and the rain descend, with a kamatz[2] since it is Hashem’s nature to do good, and not to be closed, stingy (קמץ)! Instead we say הגֶשֶם, with a סגול (אֶ), which alludes to Chessed, as is shown in the Nekudos under the word חֶסֶד which are both סגולs. We want it to be גשמי ברכה, rains of blessing.[3] In fact, after משיב הרוח ומוריד הגשם we say מכלכל חיים בחסד, He sustains the living with kindness.


2) If the letters בג”ד כפ”ת begin a word they have a Dagesh (dot in the letter, as in בּן) unless it follows the letters אהו”י (as in או בן יגח[4], where there is no Dagesh in the ב).[5] There are letters missing from different words due to our many sins which caused Galus. They are the ה and ו from י-ה-ו-ה, the א from כסא (as it says כס י-ה, throne of Hashem), י from ירושלים and the ו from אליהו.[6] These missing letters are אהו”י. The Bnei Yissaschar[7] tells us that after these letters we don’t have letters with a Dagesh because a Dagesh symbolizes strength, strict justice (Din) as is represented by its strong pronunciation. This is in contrast to that which has a soft pronunciation. Once we get these missing letters back, there won’t be any more strength of Din (חוזק הדין) in the world. These letters—אהו”י—have a Gematria of 22, the same number of days in the Three Weeks, the time we mourn the Beis Hamikdash (which caused us to be in Galus).


3) To make a word into future tense, there are four letters we use (אשמור, I will guard. תשמור, you, she will guard. ישמור, he will guard. נשמור, we will guard.). These four letters are ת, נ, א, י, which spell the word תנאי, condition, because this is what it does, as you stipulate for the future.


4) The letterת  in Dikduk means ‘you’ as well as ‘she’ (as in תרד, she/you [masculine] will go down.). What is the reason for this? It is said from the brother of the Maharal that this is because כל כבודה בת מלך פנימה, every honorable princess dwelling within (a woman’s צניעות, modesty).[8] So that which is the relationship of a man—you which is direct—is also that of a woman—she which is indirect.

[1] A קמצן is one who is a miser, stingy.

[2] See however Igros Moshe, Orach Chaim 4:40:15, אשרי האיש, volume 1, ch. 20,30, שות תשובות והנהגות 2:58, שות אבן ישראל  8,9. Also see שות תשובות והנהגות  1:81 and 2:58.

[3] As we say in Tefilas Geshem לברכה ולא לקללה, for blessing and not for curse. See Minhag Yisrael Torah, 1, p. 210. Also שות חמדת שאול, 19, s.v. אחדשהט.

[4] Shemos 21:31.

[5] There are exceptions to all of this.

[6] Shemos 17:16. Tzefanya 1:4. Malachi 3:23.

[7] Tamuz Av 2:8 s.v. והנה כעת.

[8] Tehillim 45:14.


Author of the books Fascinating Insights and Incredible Insights

Listen to the short Fascinating Insights Podcast at

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