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Encyclopedic Theosophical Glossary

Yah, Yaho 'yahu, yeho (Hebrew) Yah is an abbreviation of Jehovah, but equally well Jehovah could be said to be merely an enlargement of the original form Yah. The Zohar says that the 'Elohim used this word to form the world. "To screen the real mystery name of ain-soph -- the Boundless and Endless No-Thing -- the Kabalists have brought forward the compound attribute-appellation of one of the personal creative Elohim, whose name was Yah and Jah, the letters i or j or y being interchangeable, or Jah-Hovah, i.e., male and female; Jah-Eve an hermaphrodite, or the first form of humanity, the original Adam of Earth, not even Adam-Kadmon, whose 'mind-born son' is the earthly Jah-Hovah, mystically. And knowing this, the crafty Rabbin-Kabalist has made of it a name so secret, that he could not divulge it later on without exposing the whole scheme; and thus he was obliged to make it sacred" (SD 2:126). Both Yah and Yaho were Hebrew mystery-names; Yah is "a later abbreviation [of Yaho] which, from containing an abstract ideal, became finally applied to, and connected with , a phallic symbol -- the lingham of creation" (TG 374). Thus Yaho and Yah are two forms of the same original Shemitic god-name found throughout Asia Minor, and which appeared in its Greek form as Iao. The Gnostics revived the Chaldean and Phoenician mystery-god Iao, placing it above the seven heavens as representing spiritual light. Its ray was nous, standing for the Demiurge as well as the divine manas. "Y-ha-ho was a sacred word in the Egyptian mysteries, which signified 'the one eternal and concealed deity' in nature and in man; i.e., the 'universal Divine Ideation,' and the human Manas, or the higher Ego" (TG 375). Yaho in consequence must not be confused with Yehowah or Jehovah, for Jehovah was merely the inferior reflection in the higher material worlds of the spiritual light called Yaho. Yaho, therefore, is equivalent in type, standing, and character to atman, the universal, of theosophical literature. Yah-Havvah, Yah-Hovah. See JEHOVAH Yahweh. See YAH; JEHOVAH; TETRAGRAMMATON

Jehovah yehowah (Hebrew) In the Bible, the god of the Hebrews; a modern mispronunciation of the Hebrew alphabetic characters, resulting from the combining by the Jews themselves of the Hebrew consonants of this word (YHVH) with the vowels of the word Adonai (my lords) because the Jews, while always writing or copying the alphabetic characters of the name correctly in their manuscripts, when reading it never pronounced the word YHVH, but read "Adonai" in its stead -- writing the Massoretic points of Adonai to vocalize YHVH to produce Yahovah. Consequently when the Bible came to be studied by those unfamiliar with the real pronunciation of YHVH, it was read in various ways, commonly as Jehovah. It is now held by some scholars that YHVH should be pronounced yahweh or yave. It is also given as Yihweh (he will be, or it will be) (SD 2:129). However, Josephus, a priest who undoubtedly knew the correct pronunciation, wrote that it would be highly unlawful for him to divulge it as the Jews regarded it as too holy to pronounce aloud. Blavatsky writes that the rendering Ja-ho-vah is "a perversion of the Holy Name": that the majority of the Jews themselves were ignorant of the true pronunciation. "Alone, out of all their nation the high priests had it in their possession, and respectively passed it to their successors," before their death. "Once a year only, on the day of atonement, the high priest was allowed to pronounce it in a whisper" (IU 2:398-9). The Hebrews were not the only ones who knew of and revered a divinity whose name when written was conveyed by vowels mainly, as for instance the Gnostic Iao, Ieuo, or Iaou. All these ancient peoples by these vowel-words desired to express the fluid life-giving energy of the globe, of the moon, and of the planetary source -- in this case, Saturn. The early Christian Fathers connected the moon and its functions with Jehovah -- as the proximate but not causal "giver of life and death." Moreover "With the Israelites, the chief function of Jehovah was child-giving, and the esotericism of the Bible, interpreted Kabalistically, shows undeniably the Holy of Holies in the temple to be only the symbol of the womb. . . . This idea must certainly have been borrowed by the Jews from the Egyptians and Indians . . ." (SD 1:264). Jehovah is likewise identified with the serpent or dragon that tempted Eve, the dragon often standing for the primordial principle. In the Qabbalah, Jehovah is regarded as hermaphrodite and connected with the female Sephirah Binah. The Qabbalists show the word to be "composed of the two-fold name of the first androgyne -- Adam and Eve, Jod (or Yodh), Vau and He-Va -- the female serpent as a symbol of Divine Intelligence proceeding from the One-Generative or Creative Spirit" (IU 2:398). From the standpoint of the Jews, Jehovah was their patron deity, the regent of the planet Saturn. See also TETRAGRAMMATON Jehovah Nissi yehowah nissi (Hebrew) [from nes lofty, an elevation + i mine] Jehovah, my elevation; in the Bible the altar built by Moses (Ex 17:15); Blavatsky maintains that this aspect of Jehovah was equivalent to Dionysos or Bacchus, and that the Jews worshiped this deity (the androgyne of Nissi) as the Greeks might have worshiped Bacchus and Osiris. Tradition has it that Bacchus was reared in a cave of Nysa, which is between Phoenicia and Egypt. As the son of Zeus, he was named for his father (gen Dios) and the place: Dio-Nysos (the Zeus or Jove of Nysa). Diodorus identifies this Dionysos with Osiris. Jehovah-Tzabaoth, -Tsebaoth, or -Sabbaoth The seventh Sephirah of the superior septenary, identified with Netsah (triumph), who "esoterically . . . corresponds with Haniel (human physical life), the androgyne Elohim, with Venus-Lucifer and Baal, and finally with the Letter Vau or Microprosopus, the Logos. All these belong to the formative world" -- also with Siva, Saturn, and the angel Michael or Mikael; "Mikael and his angels, or Jehovah-Tzabaoth (the 'Host') who refused to create as the seven passionless, mind-born, sons of Brahma did, because they aspire to incarnate as men in order to become higher than the gods -- fight the Dragon [of esoteric wisdom], conquer him, and the child of matter is born" (BCW 8:148). See also Tseba'oth. {SD 1:459} Jehovists one of the two main trends of ancient Jewish religious thought, the other being the Elohists. "The portions belonging to these respectively are so blended together, so completely mixed up by later hands, that often all external characteristics are lost. Yet it is also known that the two schools were antagonistic; that the one taught esoteric, the other exoteric, or theological doctrines; that the one, the Elohists, were Seers (Roeh), whereas the other, the Jehovists, were prophets (Nabi), and that the latter -- who later became Rabbis -- were generally only nominally prophets by virtue of their official position, . . . That, again, the Elohists meant by 'Elohim' 'forces,' identifying their Deity, as in the Secret Doctrine, with Nature; while the Jehovists made of Jehovah a personal God externally, and used the term simply as a phallic symbol -- a number of them secretly disbelieving even in metaphysical, abstract Nature, and synthesizing all on the terrestrial scale. Finally, the Elohists made of man the divine incarnate image of the Elohim, emanated first in all Creation; and the Jehovists show him as the last, the crowing glory of the animal creation, instead of his being the head of all the sensible beings on earth" (BCW 14:183-4). David is said to have introduced this worship in Judea after living among the Tyrians and Philistines where such rites and beliefs were common: "David knew nothing of Moses, it seems, and if he introduced the Jehovah-worship, it was not in its monotheistic character, but simply as that of one of the many [Kabeirean] gods of the neighbouring nations -- a tutelary deity of his own []to whom he had given the preference, and chosen among 'all other [Kabeiri] gods," (IU 2:45). Blavatsky holds that the Jehovists altered the Mosaic texts. { }

Tetragrammaton [from Greek tetra four + gramma letter] Used by Qabbalists to designate the four Hebrew characters -- variously rendered in Roman letters YHVH, IHVH, JHVH, etc. -- forming the word Jehovah (Yehovah). Present-day scholars regard this rendition of the four letters as erroneous, and some suggest that the proper reading should be Yahveh or Yahweh -- depending on another manner of applying the vowel-points to the consonants. The Jews themselves, however, never pronounced the name when reading their sacred scriptures, but utter 'Adonai (the Lord) in its place. Nevertheless, the Qabbalists (more particularly medieval and modern authors) have attached special importance and significance to this four-lettered word, particularly to the Hebrew equivalent for Tetragrammaton, Shem-ham-Mephorash, sometimes called the mirific name. The four letters themselves do not hold any especially occult significance, nor their sequence nor numerical value (10, 5, 6, 5, totaling 26), nor to which of the ten Sephiroth it is to be applied. "The name [Jehovah] is a circumlocution, indeed, a too abundant figure of Jewish rhetoric, and has always been denounced by the Occultists. To the Jewish Kabalists, and even the Christian Alchemists and Rosicrucians, Jehovah was a convenient screen, unified by the folding of its many flaps, and adopted as a substitute: one name of an individual Sephiroth being as good as another name, for those who had the secret. The Tetragrammaton, the Ineffable, the sidereal 'Sum Total,' was invented for no other purpose than to mislead the profane and to symbolize life and generation. The real secret and unpronounceable name -- 'the word that is no word' -- has to be sought in the seven names of the first seven emanations, or the 'Sons of the Fire,' in the secret Scriptures of all the great nations, and even in the Zohar . . . This word, composed of seven letters in each tongue, is found embodied in the architectural remains of every grand building in the world . . ." (SD 1:438-9). "Some students, in view of the sacredness of Tetraktis and the Tetragrammaton, mistake the mystic meaning of the Quaternary. The latter was with the ancients only a secondary 'perfection,' so to speak, because it related only to the manifested planes. Whereas it is the Triangle, the Greek delta, , which was the 'vehicle of the unknown Deity' " (SD 2:582). Other forms of this same name were current among the nations surrounding the Jews, as among the Syrians, some sects of whom worshiped their Iao, sometimes spelled Iaho or Yaho. Iao was one of the most sacred divinities of the Phoenicians and was supposed to be the spiritual light understandable only by the highest human intellectual faculty, and this is the idea or spiritual light of the spiritual sun. The Gnostics likewise had a mystery-god of the same name, and with the same variations in spelling, and with the same significance that it had with the Phoenicians as representing the intellectual power or potency of the solar system. Tetraktys (Greek) The number four or a group of four, a tetrad or quaternary. The Tetraktys of Pythagoras, as an emblem, consisted of a triangle formed by ten dots, of which he says: "In what you conceive as four there are ten; then, a perfect triangle and the tetraktys [four] make seven." and Proclus says: "the Father of the golden verses [Pythagoras] celebrates the Tetraktys as the fountain of perennial nature" (On the Timaeus 3). Some Qabbalists made their Tetraktys upon the Tetragrammaton in the following manner: Pythagorean = Qabbalistic 1 . = 10 2 . . = 15 3 . . . = 21 4 . . . . = 26 10 = 72 This represents four stages of evolution: a monad, a dual creative force or duad, the world of forms, and the world of complete and concrete manifestation. This arrangement of dots enables one to deduce any of the numbers from 1 to 10. It was held in such high esteem by the Pythagoreans that their most binding oath was made upon the Tetraktys. "it has a very mystic and varied signification . . . First of all it is Unity, or the 'One' under four different aspects; then it is the fundamental number Four, the Tetrad containing the Decad, or Ten, the number of perfection; finally it signifies the primeval Triad (or Triangle) merged in the divine Monad. . . . The mystic Decad, the resultant of the Tetraktys, or the 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 = 10, is a way of expressing this idea. The One is the impersonal principle 'God'; the Two, matter; the Three, combining Monad and Duad and partaking of the nature of both, is the phenomenal world; the Tetrad, or form of perfection, expresses the emptiness of all; and the Decad, or sum of all, involves the entire Kosmos" (TG 326). Tetratomic A tetratomic molecule is a molecule of an element which consists of four atoms of that element.