Kabbalah Glossary


The following words are terms and definitions often used in the Kabbalah (and the Torah).
See e.g. teachings by Rabbi Mendel Kessin on torahthinking.com, Rabbi Yehoshua Zitron on torahanytime.com and many more.
This incomplete glossary is frequently updated.

    • אתחלתא דגאולה Atchalta De’Geula – The Beginning of the Redemption (in the Messianic Process)
    • עבירה‬ Avera – Transgression / Sin against God
    • עבודה זרה Avoda Zarah – “foreign worship”, meaning “idolatry” or “strange worship”
    • בחירה‬ Bechira – Choice, Free Will
    • בִּינָה Binah – Literally: understanding (one of the Sefirot)
    • בורא עולם Borei Olam – The Creator of the World – a reference to God
    • בריה Briah – Creation
    • בְּרִית Brit – Covenant, also Circumcision
    • חז”ל‬ Chazal – Sage(s) “of blessed memory”
    • חסד Chesed – Loving-Kindness
    • חֶשְׁבּוֹן Cheshbon – Calculation
    • חיזוק Chizuk – Inspiration
    • דין Din – Justice
    • אֱדוֹם‬ Edom – The descendants of Esau, a Synonym for Christianity
    • אין סוף‬ Ein Sof – unending, infinite
    • אמונה Emunah – Faith
    • ערב רב‎ Erev rav – a Synonym for the Secular Jewish Nation and Israeli Government who want to destroy Torah
    • גַּאֲוָה Gaavah – Arrogance
    • גשמיות Gashmiut (Gashmius) – Physicality (same as Geshem but with suffix.)(state of being)
    • גהנם Gehinnom – Purgatory, Hell – a temporary location where the soul goes for purification after death. Also a small valley in Jerusalem
    • גמרא Gemara – the component of the Talmud comprising rabbinical analysis of and commentary on the Mishnah
    • גֶּ֫שֶׁם Geshem – Material or physicality (noun) / Rain
    • גבורה Gevurah – Literally: strength. One of the Sefiros
    • גלגול Gilgul – Cycle, Reincarnation
    • הֲלָכָה‬ Halacha (Halakha) – the collective body of Jewish religious laws derived from the Written and Oral Torah.
    • השגחה Hashgacha – Supervision
    • השקפה Hashkafa – Worldview
    • קַבָּלָה Kabbalah – the received wisdom, the native theology and cosmology of Judaism
    • כַּוָּנָה Kavanah – “Intention” or “sincere feeling, direction of the heart”
    • קְדוּשָׁה‬ Kedusha – Holiness, Energy, Force
    • כֶּתֶר‬ Keter – Crown
    • כלל ישראל‬ Klal Yisrael – Synonym for the Jewish People (JPS)
    • קליפה Klippah – literally: shell. Used to refer to some of the forces of evil
    • מָשִׁ֫יחַ‬ Mashiach (Moshiach) – Messiah
    • מסכן‬ Mesaken – The Act of Repair
    • מידת Midat (Midas) [Hadin] – the attribute of judgment
    • מדרשׁ Midrash (Midrashim [pl]) – the genre of rabbinic literature which contains early interpretations and commentaries on the Written Torah and Oral Torah
    • מִקְוֶה Mikveh (Mikvah) – a bath used for the purpose of ritual immersion in Judaism
    • מִרְמָה Mirmah – Fraud, Deception
    • משפט Mishpat – Judgment
    • מִצְוָה Mitzvah (Mitzvot [pl]) – Commandment(s) from G-d (613 in total)
    • נַהֲמָה דְּכִסּוּפָא Nahamah d’kissufa – The Bread Of Shame
    • נָבִיא‬ Navi – Prophet
    • נִדָּה‬ Niddah – a woman during menstruation
    • ניצוצות קְדֻשָּׁה Nitzotot Kedusha – Sparks of Holiness
    • עוֹלָם הַבָּא Olam HaBah – The Future World
    • עולם הזה Olam Hazeh – This World
    • פרנסה‬ Parnassa – Livelihood, Income, Sustenance
    • פלפול Pilpul – A method of Talmudic problem solving by bringing ideas & opinions from other locations in the Talmud
    • פנימיות Pnimiyut (Pnimiyus) HaTorah – The innermost, mystical dimension of the Torah
    • רחמים Rachamim – Compassion
    • ריבונו של עולם Ribono Shel Olam – Master of the Universe
    • רוחניות Ruchniut (Ruchnius) – Spirituality
    • שפע Sheffa – Flow
    • שיעור Shiur (Shiurim [pl]) – a lesson on any Torah topic, such as Gemara, Mishnah, Halakha, Tanakh, etc.
    • תאווה Taavah – Lust/Urge
    • תְּפִלָּה‬ Teffilah – Prayer
    • תיקון Tikun (Tikkun)- Fixing, Rectification
    • שָׁלוֹשׁ עֶשְׂרֵה מִידוֹת הרַחֲמִים‬ Shelosh-Esreh Middot HaRakhamim – The Thirteen Attributes of G-d’s Mercy
    • תשובה‬ Teshuva (Tshuva) – Repentance
    • תּוֹרָה Torah – The Five Books of Moses
    • תְּרוּמָה‬ Terumah (T’rumah) – Gift, Offering
    • יֵצֶר הַרַע‎ Yetzer HaRa – Bad Inclination
    • ייחוד‬ Yichud – Unification
    • ישמעאל‬ Yishmael – Yishmael – (The descendants of) Ismael, a Synonym for Islam
    • זיקוך Zikuch – Purification
    • זֹהַר Zohar (Sohar) – Splendor or Radiance – the foundational work in the literature of Jewish mystical thought known as Kabbalah

    – more to follow –

    More terms and definitions see also Chabad Glossary.

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