What are the 72 Names of God?
The 72 Names Of God - rings, doesn't it? Evocative... ancient... The sound of dusk breezes whispering over dusk-red Sinai sands, the sound of arcane, mystic, weathered texts whispered over the flicker of a whispering Menorah candelabra, the whispered sound of something forgotten.
The Power of Kabbalah
I recently discovered the 72 names of God whilst reading The Power of Kabbalah by modern Kabbalah doyen Yehuda Berg. Although the book did interest me overall (bright, breezy, modern, ergonomic Kabbalah), it was a chapter on the 72 names of God that really got my attention.
In that chapter Berg discusses the power, the effect the 72 names of God can have on you, even if you don't speak Hebrew, can't read it, understand it, tell it apart from Greek, etc. You don't have to understand Hebrew to derive benefit from the 72 names of God (not even Hebrew speakers can pronounce them, they are unpronounceable combinations of letters).
The power and effect the 72 names of God has on you comes from the fact that the Hebrew language is a codex of creation, a communicable key of the forces of creation and each of the 72 names is a key that unlocks a different locked and dusty chest in our inner lives.
Where do the 72 Names of God Come From?
The source of the 72 names of God comes from an episode of huge importance to the Hebrew people, an episode that defined them as a people, an episode which is a macrocosmic cameo (if one can say that) of the journey that all of us must eventually take during our moral evolution: the crossing of the Red Sea.
Moses, it is said by Kabbalists, used the 72 names of God to part the Red Sea. Powerful stuff indeed. The Kabbalists further assert that the esoteric 72 names of God were then spun or encoded into the lay fabric of the exoteric Old Testament book of Exodus, specifically into three verses from chapter 14:19-21.
19. And the angel of God, who went before the camp of Israel, removed and went behind them; and the pillar of cloud removed from before them, and stood behind them;
20. And it came between the camp of Egypt and the camp of Israel; and there was the cloud and the darkness here, yet gave it light by night there; and the one came not near the other all the night.
21. And Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the Lord caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all the night, and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided.
Ancient Kabbalists decoded Moses' powerful and spiritual 72 names of God evocation from the prosaic biblical text by writing the first verse right to left, the second left to right and the third right to left and then grouping each vertical group of three Hebrew letters into segulot, each of which has a power to affect change in an aspect of our lives.
How to use the 72 Names of God chart
- To derive benefit from the 72 names of God chart in your own life, simply scan the chart from top right to bottom left (as Hebrew is read).
- Make it a routine, a ritual.
- Get yourself into a still and meditative mood, a contemplative and receptive mood.
- Conscientize why you're carrying out the scan to increase its benefit.
- And then simply scan the letters, read the letters, allow them to work into you, to change you, to rewrite you.
How could it be that simple? How could it be anything but?
They are the 72 names of God, they are the code of creation, they are the words God used to create the world, they are the eternal whisper that we have forgotten to listen to under the prosaic cacophony of modern life.
Recommended reading on the 72 Names of God
- Good, informative background article on the 72 names of God - http://site4luck.com/English/Article.aspx?Item=126
- Excellent site on the 72 names of God that provides insight on each separate segula; has meditations for each of the 72 names - http://www.geocities.com/ichthys7/
- Nice little site exploring the nature of the 72 names of God; has a lovely little video on the 72 names of God - http://www.mastersofsedona.com/SpiritualServices/72NamesOfGodMovie.htm
Kabbalist on July 13, 2014:
Take care...these names and if they made an effect, they DONT have to be God's Names, cause no one understands it even the Hebrew speakers..and take care there is black magic...and Whatever would happen or any sound you might hear or anything would happen might be an evil trying to take you away from God.
Armando on July 11, 2012:
What KABBALAh Teach above The Implant of Chip OR Beast Mark in Human Being and Antichrist?
Sean MacMillions on May 22, 2012:
Inform BelieveIt that either the founder of Atheism or German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche most likely get's credit for the No G-d and or G-d is dead routine. It was a beauty try but you have to get up pretty early to beat the No/Dead G-d Crowd.
Anonymus on March 28, 2012:
Dec 11th, 1419 - Heretic Nicolaas Serrurier exiled from Florence
Mar 1st, 1420 - Pope Martinus I calls for crusade against the hussieten
Dec 9th, 1421 - Pope Martinus V forms University of Leuven
lies on March 22, 2012:
god is one, and has only 1 name.
this are 72 names of satan.
Rob Johnson on February 03, 2012:
My Bible Nomad now lists 121 name/title combos of God. These can be seen on http://sites.google.com/site/bibleinformation2
And I'm still discovering more names, particularly from the Book of Psalms
TheUnknown on January 24, 2012:
Year 1419,Dec. 11-Heretic Nicolaas Serrurier exiled from Florence.
Year 1420, May 5- Henry the Navigator is appointed governor of the Order of Christ.
Year 1421, Mat 5- Pope Martinus V forms The Knights of Christ.
MaryamK on April 07, 2011:
72 names of God reminds me of the 99 names beautiful names of Allah. Very interesting. Thanks for sharing.
LOUIS AMADI on March 10, 2011:
PLEASE SIR I NEED THIS BOOK TO HRLP MR TO GROW IN MY CHRIST LIVR PLRASR SEND IT FOR ME .THANKS
ADD LOUIS AMADI
FAITH BAPTIST CHURCH PORT HARCOURT RIVERS STATE NIGERIA PO.BOX 1128 PORT HARCOURT NIGERIA
Jake on January 03, 2011:
i'd like to say this i have loved god and all of that i have played a video game that shaun hastings is a reasercher for the assassins in assassins creed 2 and assassins creed brotherhood hes good at and he said for a triangle god has those names 72 and some other math in there so thanks for the articles :D
PS always remember 1419 1420 1421 = 72
His Humble Servant on December 31, 2010:
Your spiteful opinions are not welcome here.
BelieveIt on December 17, 2010:
Fun Fact #72 - There is no God.
Deborah Sexton on December 13, 2010:
I've used the 72 names of God and obtained healings and miracles.
In English people say "God I need money please supply it"
In Hebrew we use the name of God which means He is merciful and will supply our needs. In other words the attribute of God.
The Hebrew bible has these names, but the English bible translated every name as "God" (the generic god)
ShantiR from Australia on November 01, 2010:
Thanks for the Chart of G-d's 72 Names.
I appreciate you putting that here for us to utilise and to honour.
Blessings from Shanti
PS: your profile picture is beautiful :-)
Abdinasir Aden from Minneapolis, MN on October 11, 2010:
Good for you. You believe that God has 72 names according to your believe. I believe that God has 99 names according to my believ one of them is Allah. I believe that God divided the sea and made it dry to save Moses and his followers
SilverWolf on July 16, 2010:
Dear Silver Rivers,
Do not believe anything that comes out of the Kabbalah Center. Here is a link with a lot of sources to back up the fact that they are not what they seem to be, ergo anything they teach is suspect.
Sample: Partial article.
The Truth about the Kabbalah Centre
Published by Task Force on Cults and Missionaries, Los Angeles, CA 1995
Who is "Dr. Philip S. Berg"?
Philip S. Berg is the charismatic founder and leader of a quasi-Jewish cult functioning under the name of "Research Centre for Kabbalah." It has branches in New York City, Los Angeles, Toronto, London, a few other cities.
Berg portrays himself as an orthodox rabbi and proclaims his "Kabbalah Centre" to be a Jewish orthodox institution. IN his youth he did study at an orthodox Yeshiva in Brooklyn NY, and it seems that he was ordained.
Berg claims to have a doctorate (all his books go under the name "Dr. Philip S. Berg"). In some of his books he alleges to have a doctorate in "comparative religion," while another source claims his doctorate to be in "jurisprudence in biblical law." When personally confronted about the discrepancies, and questioned about his alleged doctorate, he admitted (in a published interview) that in fact -he has no academic degree at all - and that his alleged "doctorate" is "part of his smichah (ordination)" … Everyone knows, of course, that there is no such thing.
For his public lectures Berg advertises himself invariably as "the greatest Kabbalist in the world;" "the world's foremost authority on the Kabbalah;" "a living Kabbalist and the rarest of teachers;" or other such flamboyant terms of self-aggrandizement.
Outside of his own Centre and circle of followers, neither the academic nor the Jewish religious worlds know anything about him except for the anomalies of his centers. They have absolutely no regard for him, his teachings, writings or activities. In fact, he is universally condemned by both the orthodox rabbinate and contemporary schools of Jewish mysticism in Israel, the USA and elsewhere, as a charlatan.
What is the "Kabbalah Centre"?
One of the most extensive articles about Berg and the Kabbalah Centre was published in a national Canadian Jewish weekly, the Canadian Jewish News, dated March 18, 1993, pp. 2, 6-7 and 9. It exposed, with names, some of the Kabbalah Centre's anomalies, such as:
* In the autumn of 1990, a Marilyn McLeod was dying of cancer. She was visited by a "Rabbi" Yardeni of the Kabbalah Centre who persuaded her to purchase a complete hard cover set of the Zohar, as well as a few other books about Jewish mysticism, for hundreds of dollars. Marilyn was also told to change a mezuzah and her Hebrew name. For $250, they changed her mezuzah, gave her about a dozen audio tapes from the centre, and changed her name altogether. Though Marilyn couldn't read any Hebrew, she was told to simply scan the Zohar for its healing properties. Shortly thereafter (January 1991) she dies.
* Other cases are cited of people unable to read Hebrew (let alone Aramaic - the language of most of the Zohar), and who could ill afford the high prices charged, who were persuaded to purchase the Zohar and other works, who were told that mere scanning of the books would help them in their quest for spiritual fulfillment.
* Young people drawn into the centre were persuaded to help with maintenance of the building and other jobs.
* When thoroughly questioned, Berg "readily concedes that 'most' of the students as well as the teachers at the centre would likely not be able to read or interpret a page from the Hebrew Zohar."
Nonetheless, he maintains, in an alleged "paraphrase of Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai" that :you can learn from someone who doesn't know"…
* Both in the interview as well as in their promotions, Berg calls his centre "Yeshiva Kol Yehuda," alleging affiliation and association with (as the continuation or successor to) the Yeshivah Kol Yehuda in Jerusalem, originally founded in 1922 by the late Rabbi Yehudah Ashlag and later headed by the late Rabbi Yehudah Tzvi Brandwien. Berg calls himself as "Rabbi Brandwein's chief student."
[Note: see further on, chapter X, about this false allegation!]
* The Kabbalah Centre offers its classes and publications to an indiscriminate mixture of "man, woman, child, non-Jew," religious or secular.
* Berg condemns rabbis who criticize and censure him and his organization as "jealous; they are simply jealous of how we are teaching people."
* A former student who spent 18 months studying at the centre and "thousands of dollars on books and tapes," decided to investigate orthodox Judaism and realized how far removed the centre is from traditional Judaism. He said that at first "everything was very impressive. Everything made sense to me. They were in synch with what I knew about spirituality. But then I did a little outside reading and I started to realize that to know Kabbalah you need to be at a level of personal development… They never mention that. They don't talk about kashrut, mitzvot or tefilah (prayer). They never mention G-d. They talk about a light, about power. They offer instant gratification and instant answers…"
All the above is extracted from the Canadian Jewish News article. None of these matters was ever questioned or denied by Berg or the Centre.
Iclude on January 19, 2010:
Enjoy the 72 names of god meditation straight from your iphone: http://www.appens.com/72app
Joel233 on November 27, 2009:
Thank you very much for this wonderful and much needed info and links.
Silver Rivers (author) on June 24, 2009:
Hi Tom. I'm glad you enjoyed it.
Tom Cornett from Ohio on June 24, 2009:
Interesting hub.....I have learned something new today...thank you!