In Israel it can be seen everywhere, on walls, stores, and even decorating cars and vans in the street. Recently, it has appeared even in the U.S., popping up like mushrooms after the rain. It has reached TV, news reports, and even graffiti deep in Iraq, amid the war with ISIS.
So just what is נַ נַח נַחְמָ נַחְמָן מאומן (Na Nach Nachma Nachman MeUman)?
When the world was created, God, who is also referred to as “Ein Sof” (literally without end, infinite), created an intricate mystical system referred to in the Kabbalah as the Ten Sefirot. The Sefirot serve as the channels through which the world was created, and is continuously sustained through the constant revelation of God’s light.
Because the light of God is without end, if not properly filtered it would be impossible for us to exist within it, as physical reality cannot exist within a context of God’s light. One way of understanding this is to imagine yourself staring straight into the heart of the sun. Without the proper equipment to filter and reduce the awesome light, you could lose your vision forever.
So too with the light of the infinite…
God’s purpose in creating the world was so that we could have an ongoing relationship with Him. In order for that to be possible, He had to “reduce” His light. The Ten Sefirot serve as filters through which his light could come into the world, with the necessary boundaries so that our sustained existence could be possible. These ten forces make it possible for us finite beings to have a relationship with the infinite, unknowable God.
The Ten Sefirot are deeply embedded within our Jewish tradition. In the story of creation, God spoke the world into being. It is no coincidence that there are exactly ten sayings with which the world was created.
At Mt. Sinai when we were given the Torah, we received first the Ten Commandments, which contain the entire written Torah within them.
In looking deeper, it has been observed that there are actually ten pulse points running throughout the human body.
And a similar principle is true with the book of Tehillim (Psalms). This is why we say the Tikkun HaKlali, the General Rectification. Every one of its 10 chapters is intentionally aligned with one of the Sefirot, and the reading of all the chapters in its particular order rectifies all the Sefirot in order – which is why it is called the General Rectification – it can fix all things.
Now let’s go back in time for a moment. About 2000 years ago, it was written in the Holy Zohar (Tikkun 21) that in the end of days, a song would be revealed – the ‘Song of the Future’. This song is composed of four different types of melodies: simple, double, triple, and quadruple – in accordance to the four letters of the name of God, YKVK. It is with this song spoken of in the Zohar that the Nation of Israel were taken out of their exile in Egypt, as the verse says “Thus sang Moshe and the Nation of Israel, this song to Hashem….”
About 90 years ago in the year 5682, the holy Tzaddik, Rebbe Nachman, son of Feigah of Breslov (may his name be for blessing) sent a special note to one of the Breslov chassidim in Tiberius. His name was Yisrael Dov Odesser, also known as Saba Yisrael (we will discuss Saba in much more detail in later posts).
Similar to the way we received the words of “Baruch She’amar” that we say every morning, in addition to the instructions for assembling the holy breastplate of the Kohen Gadol, here too the message was delivered to Saba Yisrael via a note, in a wondrous, miraculous way.
The letter is shrouded in mysteries that have not yet been fully revealed. It contains endless gematriot (numerical codes), letter codes, and references to the deepest and most hidden secrets – even until this very day, no one has been able to fully interpret them.
Rav Moshe Feinstein, The head Rabbi in America and leading Torah scholar on halachic matters in his generation, wrote this letter after meeting Saba Yisrael:
From a letter of approbation by Rabbi Moshe Feinstein after meeting Saba Yisrael:
“I am writing on behalf of a most unusual individual, Rabbi Yisrael Dov Odesser, shlita, from Israel. This individual is a gaon (genius) in Torah. I had the pleasure of recently meeting with him and was inspired by a secret document he possesses. Rabbi Odesser is soliciting funds to enable him to print Rabbi Nachman’s sefarim, and it is a great mitzvah to assist him in this endeavor. Hashem will reward all those that so assist him.”
– Rabbi Moshe Feinstein
Back to our discussion: the last Torah insight given over by Rebbe Nachman before his passing was Torah 8 in Likutei Moharan Tinyana. He discusses there also the ‘Song of the Future’, the same song discussed by Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai in the Holy Zohar. This was the final and greatest teaching of Rebbe Nachman, revealed in the holy petek (note) to Saba Yisrael.
It is known that saying the names of tzadikkim, our righteous sages, joins us together with them, and brings down a G-dly light to us. In fact, the holy Arizal commanded his student, Rabbi Chaim Vittal, to utter the name of Rabbi Akiva (a Talmudic sage and archetypal ba’al teshuvaI) 10 times before each prayer. In the Zohar it is written that one out of every nine of the most powerful prayers includes a mention of tzadikkim. And in Rebbe Nachman’s Sefer HaMiddot, it is written that through the uttering of the names of tzadikkim, it is possible to bring a renewal like that of the original creation, so great is its power to transcend the natural order. Many more examples can be found showing the potency of this practice.
In the petek, Rebbe Nachman reveals his name in the style of letter building, as discussed in the Holy Zohar. This reveals the 10 letters from which the ‘Song of the Future’ is comprised. Here is a breakdown of how we see that in the words of the petek:
נַ נַח נַחְמָ נַחְמָן מאומן
נַ נַח נַחְמָ נַחְמָן מאומן
simple – נ (one letter)
double – נח (two letter)
triple – נחמ (three letters)
quadruple – נחמן (four letters)
The total amount of letters is 10 = 1+2+3+4
“Who is Ron?” – “I am Ron”
These 10 letters represent the 10 Sefirot, the 10 types of melody, the 10 chapters of Tehillim (Psalms) within the Tikkun HaKlali, and many other deep Kabbalistic allusions.
Rebbe Nachman revealed that by connecting to him, he can help to connect us to the infinate light of Hashem, and to lead each one of us in our own unique path. He said that “My fire will burn until the coming of Machiach”. Meaning that he is the Tzaddik that has the power to help our generation until moshiach will come.
When Rebbe Nachman came to the Land of Israel, he travelled to Meron – the burial site of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai. There, even though Rabbi Shimon had passed away almost 2000 years earlier, the two tzadikkim met there, and discussed matters of the most supernal nature – and two sentences from this conversation were recorded in the book “Chayei Moharan”, “The Life of Rebbe Nachman”.
Retroactively, it is possible to understand some fragments of their conversation.
Rebbi Nachman asked Rabbi Shimon, “Who is Ron?” And then he also answered – “I am Ron”.
The word ‘Ron’ is synonymous with joy, and with song. Therefore, it is retroactively possible to understand that Rebbi Nachman was hinting the following to Rabbi Shimon:
“Who is Ron (who is song)?” – Who is the Song of the Future, the one which you revealed in the Holy Zohar?
“I am Ron (I am the song)” – My name is Nachman, from which are formed the words of the Song of the Future.
נ’חל נ’בע מ’קור ח’כמה
נ נ מ ח
The first letters of the phrase spell out the word ‘Nachman’
חל בע קור כמה
The middle letters, added up according to gematria, including the letters themselves, equal 491 – which is the gematria of
נַ נַח נַחְמָ נַחְמָן מאומן
Perhaps this is also a hint that the outer, revealed aspect of Rebbe Nachman is the name Nachal Nove’a Mekor Chachma, and the inner, more concealed aspect is Na Nach Nachma Nachman MeUman.
Before his passing, Saba Yisrael asked a group of his close students – Breslov chassidim, all – to print Rebbe Nachman’s name as it appears in the Song of the Future (נ נח נחמ נחמן מאומן) on a piece of parchment (like that used in writing a sefer Torah), and distribute these papers as amulets for the whole world. He said that these amulets would work on behalf of barren women, to heal the very ill, to aid in people finding their soulmates, to safeguard against all kinds of dark forces, to reinforce faith, and much more.
Please note: As is true of many other essays on this site, what is written here is only a drop in the sea of what it is truly possible to explain about the Song of the Future, and connecting to the Tzaddik Rebbe Nachman of Breslov. Many entire books could be scribed, and many additions and commentaries added to what we have written above. It is our hope that this small taste will enlighten the heart of the reader, and inspire you to seek revelations of greater depth about the petek and the Song of the Future, and how they can strengthen and inspire you along your individual path. If you find any mistakes in translation or have trouble understanding the article, please let us know! Feel free to comment below.We bless the viewers to be connected to Rebbe Nachman and to his teachings, and to always be happy and inspired…
נַ נַח נַחְמָ נַחְמָן מאומן
Na Nach Nachma Nachman Me’Uman