There are milestones in one’s life. These are special moments to quietly look back in hindsight with gratitude for all we have experienced, learned from and achieved in our lives.
Writing So Sweet As Honey is my way of giving thanks to all my teachers, formal and informal, friends, acquaintances and family. It is my way of sharing the lessons and wisdom I have learned from the Aleph-Bet throughout the years of my life. Lessons I learned not only from books.Lessons that were learned through living in three different countries, studying, teaching, meeting and working with an enormous variety of people, being a parent and husband, practicing daily meditation, and caring for a part of mother nature as an organic gardener of a former monastery garden.
The most important lesson of the Hebrew letters is their reminding us what we share in common. They express themselves in So Sweet as Honey as tools to help put into practice Golden Rules as “love your neighbor as yourself” and “do unto others as you would want done unto yourself”.
They wish to help us lead a harmonious life and deal with the challenges we are facing at the moment, whether in our small micro worlds or in the “big picture”. The Aleph – Bet helps us examine our way of thinking, acting and lifestyle and offers us support.
Compassion, acts of loving kindness, hospitality, conscious consumerism, working for justice, meditation . . . the list of Aleph- Bet tools won’t fit on one page !
It is a great accomplishment of Sid Bachrach that he rediscovers and reveals this original soul force in a masterful narration of the uniqueness and interwoven connections of the Hebrew letters. There exists an old an ongoing tradition of Jewish teachers writing Hebrew letters in sweet honey for their young pupils first Hebrew lesson. Sid Bachrach continues this rich educational tradition by immersing the Hebrew letters one by one in the sweetness of drasha, Biblical exegesis, stories, antidotes, songs and explanations. The Hebrew letters’ essence and their deeper and deeper meaning emerge, challenging the reader to examine his/her life. This poetic ode is a testimony of love and truth echoing the melody of the soul. A melody that will contribute and help lead us to dialogue. Luckily a dialogue which is progressing from toleration to respect and from respect to love.
Take a look inside this book and see what can help you personally and our world to finally become “the wonderful world this could be”. Join the “Tikun Olamers”, the repairers and restorers of the world. And keep singing. Since a book can’t sing please enjoy here some of the songs tied to chapters of this book that were hovering over my shoulder waiting to join in.
So Sweet as Honey – Aleph-Bet Meditations is now available in a limited original English print on demand edition. Issued primarily as an example for foreign publishing companies who would publish So Sweet as Honey for their reading public. This edition includes three extra colour illustrations. Any advice and help with foreign editions of So Sweet as Honey in English, Hebrew, French or German is welcome and appreciated.
To order copies send an e-mail with your postal address to firstname.lastname@example.org Costs: including postal costs for the Netherlands 17 Euros, for Europe 18.50 Euros and the rest of the world 20.90 Euros. Send your payment to Gemeenschap de Weyst Handel, the Netherlands account number 1383200. For foreign deposits use the following codes:
IBAN: NL13INGB0001383200 BIC: INGBNL2A Ordered copies will be sent upon reception of payment.
The Soul of the Creation
Foreword written by Rabbi Abraham Soetendorp:
The Hebrew alphabet is comprised of twenty two letters.
Therein lie the wonder of wonders.
With merely these letters is All described.
All what has been said and all what will be said.
Each letter reveals an essence of the heart and soul of the Creation.
So as the letter Bet, which begins the Hebrew Bible, concealing in its form a sublime lesson.
This letter is written from right to left is closed from behind, above and below.
There is only one opening, forward.
When we say Creation, Bereshit, we speak and look to the future.
In the contours of the Creation is the light of the Messianic time of peace and justice already visible.
In the endless and continually changing combinations of these twenty- two letters we discover in time and space that all life is intertwined and connected.
Coincidence is the realization of the cosmic order that always exists
yet which we take seldom notice of or are rarely aware of.
In the oral tradition whose source is the Creator, time after time the veil is lifted from our eyes allowing us to see and experience the shlemoet , the wholeness of the Creation.
Shalom, peace, and shalem ,complete, composed of the same letters, differ only from one another through their last added vowel.
In the words of the Declaration of Compassion it is compassion that brings about shlemoet, completeness, cooperation and unity to our divided World and true peace, Shalom.
Correspondingly, it is told that G-d wished to create the world with emet , absolute truth, but the world could not live by absolute truth and threatened to fall back into chaos. G-d decided then to create the world through Chessed loving-kindness, preceding and serving to complement emet, absolute truth. The Eternal was thus called Rav Chessed ve’emet, overflowing with loving-kindness and truth - Exodus 34:6 Psalm 86:15 .
And the Soul of the Creation?
The people of Israel were instructed to observe the Sabbath as their eternal bond with G-d. As it was written in Exodus 31: 17 It is a sign between Me and the children of Israel for ever: for in six days the Lord made heaven and earth and on the seventh day He ceased from work and rested, vayinafash.
In this verb vayinafash , He rested, are found the letters nun, fay and shin that form the word nefesh, soul. G-d truly placed the soul in the Creation. Nefesh anointed and crowned its completion!