A, Aleph, א
Aleph, א, transcribed as ‘A,’ numeration 1, means Ox. The numeration of the whole letter-name אלף is 111, and spelled out in plenitude, אלף למד פה (ALPh LMD PhH) equals 270. Also, Aleph spelled out, אלף, by modern Hebrew counting transcribes as 1,000. The ancients used an enlarged Aleph for the same number. Qabalists assign Aleph to the Fool Tarot Key, and on the Tree of Life to the eleventh path connecting Kether (Universal Superconsciousness) to Chokmah (Universal Self-consciousness). This path is called שכל מצוחצח, Sakel Matzokhtzokh, the 'Fiery' or 'Scintillating Intelligence' from the Sepher Yetzirah (Book of Formation) since it carries the first rushing of concentrated אין סוף אור, AIN SUPh AUR, the 'Limitless Light' from above Kether and represents the Omniscient mode of the Triune One-Life.
The All-Knowing, Omniscience, is set into motion through the path of Aleph and terminates in Chokmah, the All-Powerful, Omnipotence. Letter Aleph is sometimes used alone to symbolize the 'Life-Breath' or 'Spirit', רוח, ruach, Prana in Sanskrit, since it is attributed the element Air. This scintillating, fiery quality in our atmosphere originates in AIN SUPh AUR, yet is it the animating principle of that Limitless Light when activated in the second sphere, Chokmah. Alchemists call this quality, VIRGIN SULPHUR (see same). It is the First or Virgin Desire of the universe, the Primal Motion.
Qabalists call Aleph, attributed to Air, the ‘Ox of Solar Fire,’ since it contains or carries the Secret Fire. As one of the four Sacred Animals the Ox also represents element Earth. This agrees with the Hindu pantheon that frequently presents the bull, Nandi, carrying Brahma (Life-Breath or Spirit) upon its back when that principal deity makes his physical rounds in Hindu mythology. Brahma is equivalent to Qabalistic Kether. The Egyptian Apis is a bull bearing the solar orb nestled between its horns. Thus, three major mysteries from the ancient world successfully and accurately symbolize the Fiery One-Life within the atmosphere to be borne by Earth. Fire is contained within the Air, but the bull (earth) carries all elements. In alchemy Air, Fire and Water are all inherent within, or borne by, Alchemical Earth, the Mosaical, Virgin Earth. "Now the earth," we read in Genesis, "was unformed and void." Anything unformed and void is, by definition, invisible. The void, Alchemical Earth is Prima Materia, the Limitless Light, equally distributed throughout endless space, AIN SUPh. This is the Light, the very Earth, that the meek are promised to inherit. Yet is this earthy light a black light, "Too brilliant for mortal eyes." We cannot see this luminous earth substance until we develop the inner vision by perfecting certain glands within the brain. Developing these and other glands and organs within our bodies is the physical laboratory portion of the Great Work. Key to the physical ends of the Great Work is in the right use of Air with breath control before and during meditation.
As one of the three Mother letters in the Hebrew alphabet, Aleph is assigned the coordinate Above-Below in the CUBE OF SPACE (see same) from the Book of Formation. It connects the Above face (self-consciousness) with the Below face (subconsciousness). We access subconsciousness in meditation by deep, steady, rhythmic breathing. Gematria hints other suggestions. The Hebrew for 'Darkness, Obscurity', is אפל, aphel. It also sums to 111, that of letter-name Aleph. Sharing that number is Precious Stone, ABN-ChN (ahben-chen). Deep within the obscure darkness of subconsciousness lay the precious Philosophers’ Stone, the Limitless Light of Alchemical Earth, mined from the mountain of Spirit by those comprehending the inner secret of breath control. Hebrew for 'awaken' is ער, or. This totals 270, or Aleph spelled in plenitude. 'Bright Stone', בהיר אבן, bahir ahben, also equals 270. The fullest extension or expression (represented by the plenitude spelling of a letter or word) of the powers behind letter-symbol Aleph hints our awakening to the bright, Limitless Light. Through correct breathing exercises Limitless Light is inhaled into our cellular consciousness. It sufficiently influences changes within our self-conscious awareness to perceive the true nature of our physical universe. Also see AIN SUPh AUR and RUACH.