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It's a Yiddish abbreviation for Kein Ayin Hora - or in Hebrew Bli Ayin Hara. Simply stated without the evil eye; we're not discussing [something] in order to get [it] punished due to our jealousy.
See Chasam Sofer on Shabbos 147b, http://www.hebrewbooks.org/pdfpager.aspx?req=21655&st=&pgnum=80. That the names of the months come from the Babylonians, so what? The name Amraphel comes from Babylonian or some similar language, but it is darshened as having a Hebrew meaning. Same with Sancheriv and lots of other examples.
Hayom Yom, 3 Tishrei The Tzemach Tzedek had yechidus with the Alter Rebbe on Monday of Teitzei, 6 Elul 5564 (1804); the Rebbe told him: "On Shabbat Tavo 5528 (1768), my Rebbe (the Maggid of Mezritch) said a "Torah" beginning V'shavta ad Havayeh Elokecha1 He explained that the avoda of teshuva must attain a level at which Havayeh, transcendent Divinity ...
יש קונה עולמו בשעה אחת על ידי מסירות נפש באמת נתעלה ונהפוך כל הרע שבו לטוב גמור והוא ר״ת עקיבא יש קונה עולמו בשעה אחת והיינו במסירות נפש נתעלה למעלה למעלה from http://www.hebrewbooks.org/pagefeed/hebrewbooks_org_20632_507.pdf (Heichal Habracha by the Komarna Rebbe)
Our dreidel is of relatively recent vintage and there is no evidence that it existed prior to a few centuries ago. It stood for (before it's being adapted for chanukah) N = Nisht nothing to put into the pot G = Gantz Take all H = Halbe Take half Sh = Shtel Put coins into the pot One may perhaps still find deep meaning and significance in the dreidel ...
I recommend "(may he live!)". It's unambiguous, unlike an abbreviation, which may stand for any number of things, and unlike, especially, a transliterated abbreviation, which may represent different Hebrew abbreviations to people with different Hebrew dialects. It's also more accessible to those who don't know Hebrew, or who don't know it well. And the ...
The Bnai Yissaschar's answer (original here in the note) is that the letters נ ג ה ש should properly be rearranged to spell גשנה (lit. to Goshen). This is a reference to Bereisheis 46:28 when Yehuda is sent ahead to Goshen to prepare for the stay of Yaakov and his children in Mitzrayim. This served as the first precedent and as a perpetual reminder of the ...
In addition to the Chasam Sofer already quoted, another source is the Shaar Yisachar in the name of "holy seforim", who addresses kabbalistically why the acronym holds despite the halacha that Iyar is written with two yuds. The Lubavitcher Rebbe explains the concept at length here.
The Bnei Yissaschar (following on from LN6596) says that these letters are an accronym for גוף שכל נפש הכל. גוף כנגד גלות פרס where Haman tried to destroy the Jewish people physically. שכל כנגד גלות יון where the Greeks tried to destroy the Jewish people philosophically. נפש כנגד גלות בבל where the Babylonians tried to destroy the Jewish people spiritually. ...
This is complete conjecture, but so it's the assumption that they really played dradel with letters that stood for something. Originally, the letters were נשג׳א as per maseches Avoda Zara 36b בית דין של חשמונאי גזרו ישראל הבא על עבודת כוכבים חייב משום נשג׳א. Rashi explains נ=נדה דרבנן. ש=שפחה. ג=גויה. א=אשת איש.
Not all columns do start with vav, not all columns must start with vav, and the custom to make all of them start that way became far more popular some 30 years ago according to http://lavlor.blogspot.co.uk/2013/08/how-many-lines-should-my-torah-scroll.html (H/T to Zvi's accepted answer on the linked question). Before Davidovich's tikkun, I understand the ...
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