03
Feb
09

Ghost Island Kabbalah

One of the practices of Kabbalah is called ‘gematria’ and relies on a kind of numerological language play. Each letter is assigned a numeric value and then the values of each letter in each word are added up, thus valuing each word. Then, secret meanings are decoded by the discovery of other words and phrases with the same numeric value as the originals. This opens the sacred texts to radical reinterpretations and multiplicities of meaning. It is of little wonder that Kabbalah has held a fascination for everyone from Gershom Scholem to Walter Benjamin to Borges to Madonna.

A version of the gematria code can be produced in English in which the letters each are given the following values:
A- 1
B- 2
C- 3
D- 4
E- 5
F- 6
G- 7
H- 8
I- 9
J- 10
K- 20
L- 30
M- 40
N- 50
O- 60
P- 70
Q- 80
R- 90
S- 100
T- 200
U- 300
V- 400
W- 500
X- 600
Y- 700
Z- 800

Thus, Ghost Island becomes: 7+8+60+100+200 or 375 and 9+100+30+1+50+4 or 194

Ghost Island = 375 194
375 194 = Mule Scar

Thus Ghost Island is mystically also Mule Scar. What other secrets might abound on our little island? What other secret linguistic occurrences have we accidentally brought forth into being? Kabbalah is both discovery and creation; interpretation and writing, just as Ghost Island is both subject and object; produced and productive; a dream and the spring of dreams.

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1 Response to “Ghost Island Kabbalah”


  1. 1 Luckycloud
    February 3, 2009 at 12:45 pm

    Today I will work out another sentence and we can play that game that we played during our Div IIIs. If you’re interested.

    Maybe we can all do it together.


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