Monday, November 29, 2010

Progress in Hebrew Language Studies


My Work Place:


My studies of the Hebrew Language are slowly progressing, mostly at my desk, designated for this purpose. I keep an exercise book, in which I write every day, mainly revising the Hebrew Alphabet and adding at least one word a day to the vocabulary. I lack a good memory so this kind of revision is very important in my way of learning, after having decided not to enrol in a proper Hebrew Language Course for the simple reason that I don’t want to put myself under pressure of any kind. I want to learn this beautiful language in my own time, at my own pace and enjoy using all the tools at hand, including some of the wonderful and informative websites I have managed to find so far, which have been tremendously helpful in my studies.

100_5051         100_5049        

During my studies I have also discovered that in the Hebrew Tanakh (The Hebrew Bible), most of the verses are expressed in rhyme, which is not reflected in the various foreign translations of the Old Testament. This makes the Hebrew Tanakh the most ancient and the most important book of poetry ever written. It also tells me that God himself, Our Lord and Father, is also the most supreme Poet, a fact that only now has dawned on me. My reading skills are not advanced enough to enjoy these beautiful writings yet but I am hopeful to be able to enjoy the verses in their original wording as time goes by and my reading ability advances.

Like I mentioned above, I lack vocabulary and memory training, but with the aid of the internet I have found a wonderful and very informative website, which I still haven’t explored completely. The listed ‘Picture Dictionary’ offers a vast amount of basic vocabulary with in-depth  explanations, which I found very useful and of which I have listed a little excerpt below, (with kind permission, according to the statement at the bottom of the webpage).

For further information, please follow the link below:


AHRC Home > Vocabulary > Picture Dictionary

Biblical Hebrew Picture Dictionary

Fear (ירא yarey, Strong's #3372): The concrete Hebraic meaning of this verb is "to flow." It is related to the word yorehh [str:3138] meaning "first rain" and ye'or [str:2975] meaning "stream." When you are seriously afraid of something, you can feel your insides "flowing." This is the meaning of this word but is usually translated simply as "fear."

Shadow of Death (צלמות tsalmavet, Strong's #6757): The Hebrew language rarely includes compound words (two words put together to form one word). One of those few compound words in Hebrew is tsalmavet which is the word tsal [str:6738] meaning "shadow" and mavet [str:4194] meaning "death." The "shadow of death" is despair, danger or tragedy which is understood as a deep impenetrable darkness.

Valley (גיא gai, Strong's #1516): The parent root of this word is gey [Str:1341], a word meaning "pride" in the sense of lifting oneself up to a high position. The word gai is a valley, a place surrounded by "high" walls. While a valley can be a place of beauty, it can also be a place of darkness and defenselessness.

Footnote on this website:

Copyright © 1999-2007
Ancient Hebrew Research Center

Please feel free to use, copy or distribute any material on this site for non-profit educational purposes only.

Morning Star

7.34am Monday 29th November 2010


Once again, I noticed a lone star in the sky but unlike my last observation, this time I captured the only visible star in the early morning hours, more or less at the same point where I had previously taken pictures of a lone star in the evening. This star appears to be so much brighter than the rest and seems to be visible, even when the lights of all the other stars have long faded. It is now 8.23 am and as daylight has broken, the star has vanished from my view. This particular star fascinates me day after day, as it’s prominence really shines and arouses my attention, time after time. I have tried to find out more about it and after researching a little on the internet I have come to the conclusion that it might be Jupiter, although I am not 100% sure. Nevertheless, it seems to be always there, sometimes hidden in the clouds and barely visible, yet always present. Taking photographs of it is quite difficult with my little camera, although I tried to zoom in to the maximum ability of my camera, but even the built-in crop facility wouldn’t let me get in any closer. The same can be said for my Photoshop software, so these pictures have stretched my modest photographic ability to the limit.

100_5041        100E5043

If it is Jupiter, it seems to circle the earth in a 12 hour cycle but I might be wrong…it is just my observation that it appears in the early evening at the same position as it does in the early morning. In any case, to me as a novice, I just enjoy it’s wondrous presence and look out for it, as soon as evening approaches. It fills me with delight and some kind of hope, while the rest of the world is in turmoil.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Snow on the Hills

Snow on the Hills
Originally uploaded by abracacamera
Winter has left it's mark with the first snow fall of the season this morning. The Snowdonian Mountains are graced with a white blanket of snow on the hill tops, which is just beautiful to look at, where I don't suppose my photographs do this wonderful scenery due justice. Down here in the valley, the snow hasn't settled yet but the forecast for the weekend is promising more cold weather and further wintery showers. In other parts of the country, there have been traffic chaos and a fair few accidents, involving unsuspecting and unprepared citizens, who were caught out in the sudden change of the weather.
It is the time of year, when one likes to curl up by a warm fire with a steaming hot drink, hoping not to have to brave the cold for anything. It really is freezing....

Friday, November 19, 2010

Hebrew and Related Ancient Script Styles

As I started to study Hebrew more intensively about three months ago, I also searched on various websites for information, to help me understand the language and it’s origin. There are several ancient script styles and as a mere beginner of Hebrew, I have been learning and practicing to read and write 3 different styles of script simultaneously, foremost Hebrew Block Style but also Hebrew Cursive Script- and Hebrew Rashi Style. It has been time consuming and in the beginning a little confusing, but now I have reached a stage, where I can differentiate between these three script styles and learning is a real pleasure. My Hebrew-English ‘Tanakh’, which I enjoy to use for reading practice, does not have any form of transliteration but yet again the internet has proven to be a very helpful tool, as I have found a website, which displays most of the ‘Tanakh’ verses in transliterations and has been very useful in my learning to read and write this beautiful language. (english)

Hebraeisch und Verwandte Uralte Schriftformen
Als ich vor ungefaehr 3 Monaten mit dem intensiven Studium der Hebraeischen Sprache begann, suchte ich unter verschiedenen  Webseiten nach Informationen, um ein besseres Verstaendnis dieser Sprache und ihres Ursprungs zu erlangen. Es gibt unterschiedliche, uralte Schreibformen und als einfacher Anfaenger der Hebraeischen Sprache, habe ich mir gleichzeitig 3 Schriftformen angeeignet, die ich gegenwaertig zu lesen und zu schreiben uebe, vorwiegend Hebraeische Blockschrift, aber auch Hebraeische Cursive Script- und Rashi Schriftform. Es war sehr zeitaufwendig und anfangs auch etwas verwirrend, aber nun habe ich eine Phase erreicht, wobei ich diese drei Schriftformen deutlich auseinander halten kann und das Lernen ist eine wahre Freude. Mein Hebraeisch-Englischer ‘Tanakh’, den ich vorliebend gern fuer meine Leseuebungen benutze, beinhaltet zwar keine Transliterationen, aber hier wird das Internet wieder einmal zu einem sehr hilfreichen Werkzeug, denn ich habe eine Webseite gefunden, die die Verse des ‘Tanakh’ in Transliterarischer Form aufzeigt, was mir sehr zum Vorteil beim Lesen und Schreiben dieser wunderschoenen Sprache geworden ist. (german)

Excerpts from a very informative Website: Ivri –The Ancient Hebrew Alphabet
Words Have Life
The testimony of Genesis 1 and John 1 is that words become life when those words are uttered by the voice of God. When God was on Sinai, the people not only heard the sound of God, they saw His voice.
Sound Can be Seen. And all the Nation saw the voices and the flames, and the sound of the Shofar, and the mountain smoking, and the nation was afraid, and they trembled, and they stood far away. (Exodus 20: 18)
The Jews have also believed that the alphabet is sacred. Since it is the visible sound of God, I believe that it must testify something about God. So I examined this alphabet after I heard that the last letter was shaped like a cross and the first letter was an animal with horns.
When I researched the Hebrew alphabet, I did not see a cross in any of the letters, but I learned that each letter has a meaning. There are 22 letters in the Hebrew language and about 5 styles of writing these letters. Each letter has a specific numeric value. Since Hebrew is read from right to left, the alphabet is presented in that order.
  1. K'tav Ashuri (Assyrian Script). This is the square script currently used to write the sacred text.
    » STA"M (Sifrei, Torah, Tefillin, and Mezuzos). This is special style of Ashuri with crowns above some letters that is actually used to write the sacred text in the Mezuzah, Torah and Tefillin.
    The evidence is that the Assyrian square script was adopted in the days of Ezra after the Babylonian captivity around 590 BC. It was only at the directive of the Talmud, which was written after 600 AD, that this was designated as the chosen script for biblical writings.
    Other modern styles are related to the Ashuri square script.
    » K'tav Rashi. Rabbinic commentary on a text may be written in this script.
    » Printed Book. Most printed books use this script that is basically a style of the Ashuri.
    Book Print
    » Cursive. This is the common script. It is a recent innovation which has existed for about 200 years.
    In all scripts except Ivri, five letters have a special letter (a final form) that replaces them when they are used at the end of a word. We have colored these letters (Kaf, Mem, Nun, Pe, Tzadi).
  2. K'tav Ivri (Ancient Hebrew Script). This is the style of writing that existed during the time of Moses. It does not resemble the current style, but the letters had the design features for which I was searching.
  3. Other Related Scripts.
    » Phoenician Script. This script may be the root of Hebrew, Aramaic, Samaritan, Arabic, Greek and Latin.
    » Aramaic Script. Ivri is similar to the Aramaic script that was prevalent in the region.
    » Samaritan Script. This script was used by the northern tribes who returned from captivity.
    » Neo-Punic. This language was spoken in Carthage and parts of North Africa as late as the fourth century AD. Three letters have two different forms (Tet, Samekh and Tau).

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Learning Hebrew







Learning Hebrew

Hebrew is a fascinating language in which even the Alphabet itself speaks a language of it’s own, where each and every letter holds a secret meaning. To learn any language, one has to begin with the Alphabet, whether it be German, English, Greek, Russian or any other language. As the Hebrew Alphabet is so very different from our own (meaning English, German etc.) I didn’t think I could ever master it but I have been making slow progress for the past three months and even purchased a copy of the ‘Tanakh’ to assist me in my reading practice. With the aid of several websites and ‘Webster’s New World Hebrew Dictionary’, as well as daily commitment, I am now able to read and write simple sentences.



Hebraeisch Lernen

Hebraeisch ist eine faszinierende Sprache, bei der sogar das Alphabet selbst eine eigene Sprache beinhaltet, wobei jeder einzelne Buchstabe eine geheimnisvolle Bedeutung verbirgt. Beim Erlernen einer jeden Sprache beginnt man zunaechst mit dem entsprechenden Alphabet, ganz egal ob es sich dabei nun um Englisch, Deutsch, Griechisch, Russisch, oder irgend eine andere Sprache handelt. Da aber das Hebraeische Alphabet nun so voellig anders als das Unsere ist, (dabei meine ich Englisch, Deutsch etc.), haette ich niemals gedacht, dass ich es je bewaeltigen koennte aber ich habe in den letzten drei Monaten kleine Fortschritte diesbezueglich aufweisen koennen und mir den ‘Tanakh’ fuer meine Leseuebungen gekauft. Mit Hilfe verschiedener Webseiten und dem ‘Webster’s New World Hebrew Dictionary’, und taeglichem Engagement, ist es mir nun moeglich, einfache Saetze in hebaeisch zu lesen und zu schreiben.


Sunday, November 14, 2010

XVI Inspirational Poetry



Die Liebe


Sie kennt keinen Hass; Sie kennt keinen Neid

nur innere Freude, dem Herzen geweiht.

Sie braucht kein Gold; Sie braucht kein Zelt

denn ihres Schatzes, ist die ganze Welt.

Sie hat kein Versteck; Sie hat kein Ende

offenkundig spricht sie, ganze Baende.

Sie nimmt ihren Lauf; Sie nimmt ihren Weg

fuer jeden erhaeltlich, frei und geregt.

Sie kommt mit Sanftmut; Sie kommt mit Guete

des Geistes Wohnsitz, im edlen Gemuete.

Sie laeuft mit Kraft; Sie laeuft mit Eifer

so werden wir durch, die Liebe reifer.

Sie gibt ihre Freude; Sie gibt ihren Schmerz

die Liebe erfuellt, das ganze Herz.

Sie stroemt durch’s Leben; Sie stroemt im Genuss

die Liebe erfahren, ein Jeder muss.

Sie ist die Liebe; Sie ist ein Geschenk

von Gott uns’rem Vater, der Alles lenkt.




Never-ending, Liberty

Never-ending, Joy to be

Never-ending, in this Life

Never-ending, Dreams to strife

Never-ending, Happiness

Never-ending, Haste to live

Never-ending, is the Cause

Never-ending, Trust at source

Never-ending, Visions thought

Never-ending, Faith in God

Never-ending, Hope to share

Never-ending, Love to care

Never-ending, ‘I reach for you’

Never-ending, ‘my Soul so true’

Never-ending, ‘I long to be’

Never-ending, ‘to be with thee’

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Happy Valley

Happy Valley XI
Originally uploaded by abracacamera
My favourite place to visit must be Happy Valley, a park near Llandudno, established in the Victorian Era in order to offer rest and tranquility to visiting city folk. A statue of Queen Victoria is situated at the bottom of this hill. The view from the top of the Gardens is quite spectacular, overlooking the sea and Llandudno Pier. This park presents it's natural beauty in any season, even in Winter. The whole design of this Garden is carefully arranged around stonewalls, rockeries and even little ponds inbetween. It has a certain appeal and fascination, although it only covers a relatively small area.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Poetry Competition 2011 – Gedichtewettbewerb 2011

Earlier this year, I came across a german website, asking for poems to be included in the Poetry Competition of the Year,  Book of Lyricists and Poetry 2011. As it turned out, this event was organised by the Frankfurt Library in Germany and takes place every year. I chose to send in my poem ‘Die Bibel’ under the category ‘Bread’ , as I described the daily practice of Bible reading, equivalent to receiving our daily bread. The Bible has inspired all my poetry and lyrics, and is to me the most important book in the history of mankind. I am so pleased that my poem has found favour in the competition results and it will be published in the 2011 edition of the Frankfurt Library ‘ Jahrbuch fuer das neue Gedicht 2011’, which will be printed and published along with around 800 other poems, shortly before Christmas.

Vor einigen Monaten wurde ich auf eine deutsche Webseite aufmerksam, die zum Aufruf forderte, eigene Gedichte durch einen  alljaehrlichen Gedichtewettbewerb in einem Buch der Lyriker und Gedichte 2011, zu  veroeffentlichen. Wie sich herausfand, ist der Urheber dieses Wettbewerbs die Frankfurter Bibliothek in Deutschland. Ich entschied mich fuer mein Gedicht ‘Die Bibel’ und reichte es in der Kategorie ‘Das Brot’ ein, da ich mit diesem Gedicht das taegliche Lesen der Bibel, mit dem einnehmen des taeglichen Brotes gleichstelle. Die Bibel hat meine gesamte Poesie und Lyrik inspiriert, denn sie ist und bleibt fuer mich, das wichtigste Buch der Menschheitsgeschichte. Ich bin sehr gluecklich, dass mein Gedicht in den Wettbewerbsresultaten Anerkennung gefunden hat und es wird mit circa 800 weiteren Gedichten in der Auflage, ‘Jahrbuch fuer das neue Gedicht 2011 der Frankurter Bibliothek’, noch kurz vor Weihnachten veroeffentlicht werden.




Die Bibel

( Unser taegliches Brot )

Du wiegst die Wahrheit, Du pruefst das Wort

Du wirst es nicht finden, an einem anderem Ort

Die Schriften erlesen und zum Buch gebunden

Das Lebenswerk unseres Herrn gefunden

Mit Nase und Brille, tief in den Seiten

Die zusammen, bei uns, auch die Bibel heissen

Das wahre Wort, im Buch vereint

Lest mit Freuden, was die Bibel weist

Vom Alten- und vom Neuen Testament

Weisheit und Wonne, wer die Verse kennt

Das edelste Buch, seit Zeiten zuvor

Auch heute an Wichtigkeit nichts verlor

Dem Leser, die Freude der Offenbarung gebracht

Mit Gebet und Verstand, das Herze lacht

Als Schriftwerk zum Glauben von tausenden Menschen

Bewahren wir schriftlich Gottes Werk und Lenken

Das Buch – Die Bibel – Das Wort – Die Wahrheit – Das Brot


Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Berry of the Cornus Kousa Tree

This is a close-up picture of the berry of the Cornus Kousa Tree. The whole tree was just laden with these deliciously looking berries, most of them still green. Looking at this specimen, I assume that they turn red when ripe, so I am hoping to return to the park and pick some more fruits in a few days time. The Tree Advice Trust have assisted me a second time in identifying a foreign type of tree and I am very grateful to them. The Cornus Kousa Tree seems to be very well adapted to this region, considering is has it's origin in Asia, foremostly Japan, if Wikipedia is to be believed, and is also known as Japanese Flowering Dogwood ( Yamaboushi).

November Fruit - Cornus Kousa Tree

Another unusual tree came to my attention, whilst on a stroll through the local park. Laden with fruit, the Cornus Kousa Tree, caught my eye for it's unusual berries. Wondering whether these would be edible, for they truly look delicious, I took a couple of pictures and a fruit sample home with me. After having contacted The Tree Advice Trust, who have very kindly assisted me in the identification of this species, I googled Wikipedia and found out that this tree is native to Asia and apparently the fruits are edible. They reminded me a bit of Lychee in their appearance but would probably taste very differently.
I never cease to be amazed by the abundance of foreign and interesting trees we have growing right on our doorstep.

Monday, November 8, 2010

X Pensive–Gedankenvoll




Revelation in Studies


Studying the Bible has led me to re-discover the Old Testament to be seen as important as the New Testament, as many of the written verses in the Old Testament, still find their importance in our lives today. I would like to point out especially the Prophets, Psalms and Proverbs in which writings, the Bible expresses an immense wealth of wisdom and foresight, now and forever,  applicable to our time today. 

Only the other day, I came across a passage in Psalms that astonished me in it’s accuracy, with relation to the New Testament writings of the gospels.

I am referring to Psalm 22: 1-32, Psalm of David in the Old Testament.

It is written from the perspective of the one suffering on the cross, Jesus Christ, and describes in great detail, the Passion of the Cross, as also mentioned in the gospel of Matthew in particular. Matthew 27:46 states the verse: ‘My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?’ This is also the first line of Psalm 22:2 and with further reading right up to verse 32, the entire Passion of the Cross and Jesus’ suffering are proclaimed in every detail. In my mind there is no doubt that as Jesus spoke his last words here on earth, he also intended to reveal to us, that in that moment, the prophecy was fulfilled and those last words on the cross, said so much more than we can imagine, if only we take the time to study a little bit more. Psalm 22:1-32 opened my eyes to the true meaning of prophecy and is the most heartfelt of all the revelations, in my humble view.

My references were taken from the JPS Hebrew-English Tanakh, The King James Version Bible, Die Bibel and Die Gute Nachricht Bibel, through which I have compared translations and based my findings on.




Offenbarungen im Studium


Das Studium der Bibel hat mich dazu bewegt, das Alte Testament voellig neu zu entdecken und ihm die gleiche Wichtigkeit wie die des Neuen Testaments zuzuschreiben, da die Verse auch in unserem heutigen Leben, nichts an Wichtigkeit verloren haben. Ich moechte besonders auf die Prophetenbuecher, die Psalmen und die Sprueche hinweisen, in denen die Bibel ihren enormen Reichtum an Weisheit und Vorhersehung beweist, jetzt und ewig, anfuehrbar bis in die heutige Zeit.

Neulich, bewegten mich besonders die Verse der Psalmen und ich war sehr verwundert ueber die Genauigkeit in Bezug zu den Evangelien des Neuen Testaments.

Ich berufe mich hier auf Psalm 22:1-32, Psalm Davids im Alten Testament.

Dieser Psalm scheint von der Perspektive des Leidenden am Kreuze, Jesus Christus, geschrieben zu sein und beschreibt in allen Einzelheiten den Leidensweg des Kreuzes, was auch besonders im Matthaeus Evangelium beschrieben wird. In Matthaeus 27:46 lautet der Vers:' ‘Mein Gott, Mein Gott, warum hast Du mich verlassen?’ Dies ist auch die erste Silbe des Psalm 22:2 und bei weiterem Lesen, bis hin zu Vers 32, werden der ganze Leidensweg des Kreuzes und das Leiden Jesu hier in allen Einzelheiten mitgeteilt.

Ich habe keine Zweifel, dass als Jesus seine letzten Worte auf dieser Erde von sich gab, er uns auch gleichzeitig offenbaren wollte, dass gerade in diesem Moment sich die Prophezeiung erfuellt hatte. Durch seine letzten Worte am Kreuz, sagte er so viel mehr als wir es uns vorstellen koennen, wenn wir uns nur ein wenig mehr Zeit zum Nachforschen nehmen wuerden.

Der Psalm 22:1-32 hat mir die Augen zur wahren Prophezeiung geoeffnet und ist die aller herzbewegendste Offenbarung, zumindest aus meiner kleinen, bescheidenen Ansicht.

Meine Referenzen wurden entnommen aus dem JPS Hebrew-English Tanakh, The King James Version Bible, Die Bibel und Die Gute Nachricht Bibel, durch die ich die Uebersetzungen verglichen habe und auf die ich meine Resultate basiert habe.