Wednesday, September 28, 2005

The Beauty of Hebrew

I've been inspired by Mirty's post.

And now I will tell you
what I will do to my vineyard.
I will remove its hedge,
and it shall be devoured;
I will break down its wall,
and it shall be trampled down.
I will make it a waste;
it shall not be pruned or hoed,
and it shall be overgrown with briers and thorns;
I will also command the clouds
that they rain no rain upon it.
For the vineyard of the Lord of hosts
is the house of Israel,
and the people of Judah
are his pleasant planting;
he expected justice*,
but saw bloodshed;
but heard a cry!

Isaiah 5:1-7

* I'd say that "mishpat" is more like Law, not Justice; Justice is closer to "tzedek," which is related to righteousness.
The transliteration of the Hebrew, below, is:
V'yikav l'mishpat
V'hineh mishpach
l'tz'dakah v'hineh tza'akah

from Mirty: Weevil has several posts about these verses, as she is studying the language closely. She points out the interesting Hebrew in the last verse:

וַיְקַו לְמִשְׁפָּט וְהִנֵּה מִשְׂפָּח
לִצְדָקָה וְהִנֵּה צְעָקָהGod yearns for us to do justice, but here is bloodshed;
not righteousness, but screams of suffering.

As idiodic as I sometimes sound in Hebrew, it's not that I'm a total ignoramous. Look at the two pairs of highlighted words. Even if you don't know Hebrew, you can see that they are almost identical. There's a difference of one letter in each pair.

Between "mishpat," Law and "mishpach," blood shed, violence, it's a switch from "tet" to "chet," and in the order of letters, the "chet" comes before the "tet." "Chet" also means sin. When "laws" are upheld incorrectly, or the "democratic process" brings in unjust laws, like Disengagement, we have tragedy and bloodshed.

The difference between "tzedakah" and "tza'akah" is the "dalet," like "delet," door, and "eyin," like the word for eye, a very difficult letter to pronounce, it's totally gutteral, almost the sound one makes when choking. When the "Justices," like in Israel's court system and government are are corrupted by false, perverse morality, there's no "tzedek," Justice, no "tzedakah," charity or righteousness, just screams of pain from the suffering innocents.

"Tzedakah" brings us through the door to G-d, but when the superficial, perverse/false morality is in play, we all suffer until we cry out in pain.

G-d has given us so much, and instead of doing what we should with it, like settling the Land, we have a corrupt, superficial government that will cause and has been causing tragedy, until we--all the Jewish People--learn our lessons.

Gmar Chatima Tova, May G-d Accept Our Prayers

1 comment:

Unknown said...

This post has been included in Haveil Havalim #39, hosted by SerandEz - take a few minutes and check what it says. Shana Tova!