Above is a portrait of Rabbi Fuchs created by artist Stefanie Steinberg, San Francisco 2017
The Life of Chai
Each Hebrew letter has a numerical equivalent, or "Gematria". The letter Yud has a value of ten, while the letter Chet corresponds to eight. Written together Chet and Yud become the word Chai, which means “Living” or “Life”. (The word “Chai” also means “raw” as in “uncooked”).
In Jewish thought, the letters of the Hebrew Alphabet are the foundation of the universe. The Kabbalah teaches that there is a connection between objects and ideas that share a common Gematria or other letter connections. Therefore, in some way, all things that equal 18 has a link to Chai/Life.
Naturally, there are both positive and negative ideas that equal 18: Ohavi – my beloved = 18 Aivah – a type of hatred = 18 Cheit – sin = 18 Perhaps this speaks toward the idea that we humans have the ability to change hatred into love, and that through the act Teshuvah (Repentance) we can transform sin into life.
Repeatedly in the Bible, it is the woman who 'gets it' and the man who is clueless. Eve has been maligned for generations for the supposed fall of man, when in fact; she is the heroine of the elevation of humanity. ~