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Monday, July 20, 2009

YHWH

Physicists come up with words like, 'quark' (lifted from James Joyce) or 'charm' or 'up' or 'down' while theologians come up with words like tetragrammaton. That for how the Hebrew scribes penned the 'unpennable' or the 'unspeakable': YHWH. Four Hebrew consonants, and the 'missing' vowels. Without the 'missing' vowels, the 'word' is unpronounceable, or more likely, not to be uttered by humans. Even the modern-day Hebrew scribe writes in English: G-D. Yet most do utter YHWH, guessing with Yahweh and even further guessing at the unknown vowels and coming up with Yehovah or Jehovah. It is as though the original Hebrew scribes captured in writing the essence of the mystery of what most today, cannot imagine. For we simply utter God, or god, without a thought to the sacredness of our utterance.

1 comment:

Lucy said...

I heard somewhere that 'god' comes from some old proto-Germanic root connected with the idea of the voice. I was happier with the word after that. Still find it hard to find a suitable pronoun, mind, so tend to avoid he/she/it.