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We read the following (from Chabad Website) in Divrei Hayamim II 7:14:

וְיִכָּֽנְע֨וּ עַמִּ֜י אֲשֶׁ֧ר נִֽקְרָא־שְׁמִ֣י עֲלֵיהֶ֗ם וְיִֽתְפַּֽלְלוּ֙ וִֽיבַקְשׁ֣וּ פָנַ֔י וְיָשֻׁ֖בוּ מִדַּרְכֵיהֶ֣ם הָֽרָעִ֑ים וַֽאֲנִי֙ אֶשְׁמַ֣ע מִן־הַשָּׁמַ֔יִם וְאֶסְלַח֙ לְחַטָּאתָ֔ם וְאֶרְפָּ֖א אֶת־אַרְצָֽם׃

And My people, upon whom My name is called, humble themselves and pray and seek My presence and repent of their evil ways, I shall hear from heaven and forgive their sin and heal their land.

My question: Which of Hashem's name is the name upon whom Israel is called? Is "Israel" also a name of Hashem?

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    My non-literalist understanding is that it means they are (or should be) referred to as Hashem's people, not that one of names of the people is also is also one of Hashem's names (in the way Shalom is said to be one of Hashem's names). As I have heard discussions around which exact letter was imprinted on Cain (based on Rashi for Bereshit 4:15), there probably exists an answer closer to what you're looking for.
    – Tamir Evan
    May 8 '20 at 8:18
  • The same phrase in Amos 9 is explained by the Malbim (when written about all other nations) as שהם יכירו שם ה' ויקבלו אמונות האמת עד שיקרא שם ה' עליהם
    – rosends
    May 8 '20 at 13:20
  • @YaacovDeane What are the names of those three angels, and where are they referenced? Thanks.
    – ninamag
    May 8 '20 at 14:33
  • @rosends where can I read this, where the Malbim says this.
    – ninamag
    May 8 '20 at 14:34
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+50

Yehuda/יהודה

We are called "Yehuda/Yehudim" as our eternal name and it contains the [4 letters of the] sheim Hashem in it.

The Sfas Emes explains that it's G-d's name with an added letter Daled (ד) that represents our poor state in exile. The jewish people take shelter in the name of G-d so to speak

הִשְׁאַרְתִּ֣י בְקִרְבֵּ֔ךְ עַ֥ם עָנִ֖י וָדָ֑ל וְחָס֖וּ בְּשֵׁ֥ם יְהוָֽה׃

[poor nation]...and they shall find refuge In the name of the LORD.

[See more in piece below - Sfas Emes] (Also found here: Sefaria - Sefat Emet)

Also see: Sotah 36b discussing Yehudah sanctifying the name of G-d and therefore having the full name of G-d in his name.

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Sfas Emes - Name Yehuda

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  • "i, what is the name, folio number, weblink, etc.., of this source?
    – ninamag
    May 11 '20 at 11:50
  • Updated: Piece 663 on Moadim (Vol. 2) - 3rd paragraph
    – Gre''i
    May 11 '20 at 12:07
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    Hint for this: Take the bottom yud that helps form the last letter of Hashem’s Ineffable Name and transfer it up to the next letter and Hashem’s name now reads יהודי
    – Lee N.
    May 11 '20 at 19:12
  • Just curious was trying out bounty feature for the first time. Is it true that since this answer doesn't have two upvotes I don't get credit? Also just curious why this answer doesn't seem well received. Looking for feedback.
    – Gre''i
    May 16 '20 at 19:10
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The English translation of your quotation:

וְיִכָּֽנְע֨וּ עַמִּ֜י אֲשֶׁ֧ר נִֽקְרָא־שְׁמִ֣י עֲלֵיהֶ֗ם וְיִֽתְפַּֽלְלוּ֙ וִֽיבַקְשׁ֣וּ פָנַ֔י

would be better understood as, I will humble My people who (have the teaching of) calling My name by them. And they will pray and they will seek My face...etc.

This means that for prayers to be efficacious and answered quickly and in the best possible way, proper form and intention matters. This idea is expressed by Rabbi Yosef Gikatilla in his introduction to Sefer Shaarei Orah.

You asked me, brother, dear friend, to clarify in front of you a path about the names of the Holy One, Blessed be He, the Exalted and Almighty, to produce with them according your will and to reach through them the object of your desire. And by seeing that your intention is honest, and better than (simply fulfilling) your request, I must let you know which way will spread light (be spiritually profitable); namely, what is the way that HaShem Almighty desires or does not desire. And when you get to know this, then call HaShem and He will respond. And you will be closest to him. And love Him with all your soul, and rejoice on HaShem. And He will grant you the requests of your heart.

In this case, the Hebrew word 'שמי' used in the expression from your quotation is understood as a Roshei Teivot for the names which form part of the inner intention (kavannah). It stands for the names of the 3 angels which are to be intended during traditional Jewish prayer.

The names of these three angels are Shmu-i-el (שמועיאל), Metatron (מטטרון) and Yehav-i-el (יהואל). These angels also correspond with the actual chain of prophetic transmission to the Jewish people, namely Shmuel HaNavi, Moshe Rabbeinu and Eliyahu HaNavi.

This is a tradition which has been passed down through the Prophets to the present day and which has its origins all the way back to Adam HaRishon.

For a detailed record of the chain of transmission and the mention of these three angelic names specifically, see this link to the introduction to Sefer Brit Menucha which is one of the authoritative sources discussing this subject.(see also additional details on Sefer Brit Menucha and its author Rabbi Avraham ben Yitzchok of Granada/Rimon)

This same teaching is echoed by Isaiah the Prophet in 41:25 which says:

I have roused him from the north, and he has come, From the sunrise, one who invokes My name; And he has trampled rulers like mud, Like a potter treading clay.

הַעִיר֤וֹתִי מִצָּפוֹן֙ וַיַּ֔את מִמִּזְרַח־שֶׁ֖מֶשׁ יִקְרָ֣א בִשְׁמִ֑י וְיָבֹ֤א סְגָנִים֙ כְּמוֹ־חֹ֔מֶר וּכְמ֥וֹ יוֹצֵ֖ר יִרְמָס־טִֽיט׃

And again in Isaiah 43:7 which repeats the concept:

כֹּ֚ל הַנִּקְרָ֣א בִשְׁמִ֔י וְלִכְבוֹדִ֖י בְּרָאתִ֑יו יְצַרְתִּ֖יו אַף־עֲשִׂיתִֽיו׃

And also in Zechariah the Prophet 13:9 who says:

That third I will put into the fire, And I will smelt them as one smelts silver And test them as one tests gold. He will call in My name, And I will respond to him. I will declare, “You are My people,” And he will declare, “The L-RD is my G-d!”

וְהֵבֵאתִ֤י אֶת־הַשְּׁלִשִׁית֙ בָּאֵ֔שׁ וּצְרַפְתִּים֙ כִּצְרֹ֣ף אֶת־הַכֶּ֔סֶף וּבְחַנְתִּ֖ים כִּבְחֹ֣ן אֶת־הַזָּהָ֑ב ה֣וּא ׀ יִקְרָ֣א בִשְׁמִ֗י וַֽאֲנִי֙ אֶעֱנֶ֣ה אֹת֔וֹ אָמַ֙רְתִּי֙ עַמִּ֣י ה֔וּא וְה֥וּא יֹאמַ֖ר יְהוָ֥ה אֱלֹהָֽי׃

This third example from Zechariah is the most clear reference to the concept that it applies to prayer.

This idea is also expressed in Sifrei to Devarim 49:1. G-d wants us to pray with proper intention which includes intending the system by which He has created the entire universe (meaning also intending the appropriate angelic names). But at the same time, it must be constantly remembered what is also expressed in the Sifrei just preceding this, namely by Hillel at the end of 48:12.

And thus does Hillel say: "One who makes use of the 'Crown' (for his own purposes) passes away" (from the world.)

This is referring to someone who tries to appeal exclusively to the angelic influences, something called binding names. Even though we are taught to have these intentions, we know we only pray to G-d. These intentions are simply proper form and etiquette.

Regarding your last question, the name, Israel, has an element that alludes to a similar structure to that of angels. But like is taught in the Zohar, Israel transcends the concept of angels. This is expressed through the statement that Israel, the Torah and the Holy One, blessed be He are all one.

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  • Interesting. I have a vague recollection of hearing this book "Sefer Brit Menucha" in a shul lecture by a visiting kabbalistic rabbi, who said, in certain situation, it is okay, to pronounce Hashem's Name (i.e. YHWH) as vowelised in the Tanakh. I just taugh that somehow this was the name in question.
    – ninamag
    May 11 '20 at 9:14
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    I should note that, while I fully agree with Yaacov that "we know we only pray to G-d," it can be very hard to read that into some early kabbalistic sources (like R' Chaim Vital and sefer Yosher Levav). I discuss those in this essay: marbitz.com/home/rabbi-s-r-hirsch/…
    – dlanced
    May 14 '20 at 0:55
  • @dlanced Rabbi Chaim Vital is late in terms of kabbalistic teaching and did not diverge from what previous generations taught and accepted. You can rest assured that none of it diverged from the tradition that was given to us by Moshe Rabbeinu. With respect, the difficulty, if there is any, is only with your understanding of what he is saying. May 14 '20 at 1:42
  • @Yaacov. I'm not sure it's accurate to say that R' Chaim Vital "did not diverge from what previous generations taught and accepted" He actually wrote (in his introduction to Eitz Chaim) that you mustn't trust the contents of any of the kabbalistic books written after the Ramban: והנה כל ספרי המקובלים האחרונים שהיו אחר הרמב"ן ז"ל אל תקרב אליהם כי מן הרמב"ן ואילך נסתרה דרך החכמה הזאת מעיני כל החכמים ולא נשאר בהם כי אם קצת ענפי הקדמות בלתי שרשיהם ועליהם בנו המקובלים האחרונים ז"ל דבריהם בשכל אנושי ומעצמך תוכל לדעת לעמוד על המבחן...
    – dlanced
    May 14 '20 at 16:38
  • In that introduction, he also wrote that there was no unbroken direct transmission of at least key elements of his teachings, since he claimed that the Ari learned them through Eliyahu and NOT from this-worldly teachers: כ"ז היה מעצמו ע"י חסידותו ופרישותו אחרי התעסקו ימים ושנים רבים בספרים חדשים גם ישנים בחכמה הזאת ועליהם הוסיף חסידות ופרישות וטהרה וקדושה היא הביאתו לידי אליהו הנביא שהיה נגלה אליו תמיד ומדבר עמו פה אל פה ולמדו זאת החכמה
    – dlanced
    May 14 '20 at 16:39

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