Hod: The Glory

Hod (in Hebrew הוד “majesty, splendor, glory”) is the eighth sephira of the Kabalistic Tree of Life. Hod is below Gevurah and across from Netzach in the Tree of Life; Yesod is southeast of Hod, and has four paths leading to Gevurah, Tiphereth, Netzach, and Yesod.

Being at the base of the Severity Pillar, Hod is the first shaping energy we encounter on our ascent path. It belongs to the lower triad – Hod, Netzach, Yesod – where Hod and Netzach respectively represent the strength and form of what is on the psychic plane of the individual, which is reflected in his unconscious in Yesod, and finally manifests itself in Malkuth. Hod is the Sefirah where thoughts are formed, animated by Netzach’s energies. In Hod resides the logical-rational intellect, where one can act by controlling one’s thoughts to consciously shape them. Acting in Hod’s sphere, you realize the illusion of sensory information and you can consciously process it.

Hod is associated with the left leg, as if he has the power to continuously advance, with determination and perseverance, towards the achievement of goals in life. The left leg (Hod) and the right leg (Netzach), carrying out their functions together, allow to walk and move forward, and are defined in the Zohar “the stairs of justice”. These two sephirot can be, as well as the loins, two halves of a single body, and are responsible for the general state of balance, and for this reason, are sometimes considered as a single Sefirah associated with the divine name Tzabaoth.

The word “glory” is one of the most used in the Bible. In the Old Testament, the word is used to translate several Hebrew words, including hod and kabod, while in the New Testament it is used to translate the Greek word doxa (δόξα). In the Greek versions of the Bible the word doxa can also mean judgment, opinion and, by extension, good reputation, honor. If according to Cicero glory is “a frequent mention of praise for a man”, for St. Augustine the concept of “hod” may have different translations but still refer to a single concept defining it as “brilliant notoriety with praise” (“clara notitia cum laude”).

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