updated b


"….A memorial of 'teruah' (A blast of the ram's horn)"

By way of the Truth, [the mystic teachings of the Kabbala], teruah is that which has stood by our fathers and us, as it is said, Happy is the people that know the teruah, similar in meaning to that which it is written, teruah, (the alarm of) ear; for The Eternal is a man of war. If so, it shall be a day of teruah unto you means that the day that is set aside for teruah [i.e., when the world is judged according to the attribute of justice], will be to our succor [for we will be remembered in mercy]. Similarly, a memorial of teruah, 'a holy convocation' means that there will be a remembrance [of mercy] in the teruah [the quavering sound which alludes to the attribute of justice], and therefore it is a holy convocation.

It was not necessary for Scripture to mention the shofar [i.e., that "it shall be a day of shofar unto you"], for the shofar is already alluded to in the word "day," (since the word shofar [the ram's horn] is symbolic of mercy, it is already hinted at in the word "day" which likewise symbolizes mercy) and the teruah is on [that "day"], and thus it is a day of judgment in mercy, not a teruah (alarm) of war.

It is for this reason that Scripture mentioned only the teruah [but did not mention the tekiot, the accompanying plain sounds], because it is already a tradition received by our Rabbis which all Israel have seen [done] as far back as Moses our teacher, that each teruah (quavering sound) has one plain accompanying sound before it and one after it. And why should Scripture mention the teruah, and not mention the tekiot at all, neither in connection with the New Year nor the Day of Atonement [of the Jubilee year]? But it is because the tekiah [the plain accompanying sound] is the memorial, and it is the shofar [all alluding to the attribute of mercy], and the teruah is as its name indicates [i.e., a reference to the attribute of judgment]. And because it [the teruah] is wholly surrounded by mercy - an accompanying plain sound before it and one after it - therefore He said of those who know the teruah that through righteousness they will be exalted, for You are the glory of their strength.

Thus it is clear that everything depends upon repentance, but on the New Year He is concerned entirely with the attribute of justice and conducts His world [by that attribute], and on the Day of Atonement He is concerned entirely with the attribute of mercy. It is this that is expressed in the saying of the Rabbis [with reference to these solemn days]: "The King sits upon the throne of judgment etc." Thus the New Year is a day of judgment in mercy, and the Day of Atonement is a day of mercy in judgment.

(This passage is adapted from the 13th century classic by the illustrious scholar, philosopher and defender of the faith, Rabbi Moshe ben Nachman--known as 'Ramban' or 'Nachmanides', a master kabbalist in his own right and a major link in the transmission of Jewish mysticism--based on the excellent annotated English translation by Rabbi Dr. Charles B. Chavel)


Redesign and implementation - By WEB-ACTION