Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Gematria Abuse

Gematria is an ancient art, which features in Jewish tradition at times (Wikipedia has quite an interesting, elaborate entry on it). That does not mean, however, that any and all such calculations conjured up are particularly significant. Not all gematriyaos are equal. Some can be laughable or repulsive. Others can be part of Torah.

Recently, with excitement, someone stated to me, that Donald Trump is be-gematria משיח בן דוד, while his opponent was equivalent to a Biblical villain in calculation. I guess a partisan somewhere put it together to pitch their favored candidate.

I responded that I can't go along with it, and that if we went according to (such) gematriaos, 770 (Eastern Parkway) is בית משיח.  :)

Note: this is not an endorsement or non endorsement of any candidate.

(Of course, the thing is laughable. How can someone from non-Davidic stock be Moshiach ben David, after all? And someone not of a nationality the Torah condemns is not that either.)

Sometimes these gematria abuses seem like cases of people painting a target around an arrow, after it was shot. In other cases it just seems like play and humor. Perhaps this case is a combination of the above.

May all our calculations be accurate and on target.


  1. I told the gematria of 770 to a Lubavitcher friend many years ago, and he laughed it off, pointing out that 770 is also the gematria of חמור בלי דעת, which has the additional advantage of being having the acronym חבד

    1. Definitely! I mean, I love doing Gematrios, but on the Torah or Mussar, etc.! You can't just say that, for example, since Esav has the same Gematria as the word Shalom, it means that he promoted peace. Chas V'Shalom! As you said, Gematrios have a time and a place. They must actually make sense.

      Please check out my blog achsameach.blogspot.

      Have a wonderful day!