Attributes of the Seventy Nations

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Main article Seventy nations

List of the mystical attributes of each of the seventy nations.

In Rebbe Nachman's "Master of Prayer", Rebbe Nachman speaks about the "seventy nations". He relates in the story that "It is written that there was a great hurricane in the world. This hurricane turned the whole world upside-down. Sea was transformed into dry land, and dry land into sea. Desolate areas became inhabited, while inhabited areas became desolate. It threw the whole world into confusion. After this period of panic and confusion, where all the world was disoriented, the people of the world decided to elect a king. They then delved into the question as to who would be most fit to be elected king. Upon deliberation, they finally said, 'We must focus on the goal of life. The person who strives the most toward this goal is the most fit to be king.' But then they had to determine the goal of life. Regarding this question, there were many factions."

In that story each faction chose a king and a land, and became a nation. The land also had influence. Some lands had an influence that was particularly conducive to one traite, while other lands were conducive to other traits. Each group found a land which was particularly good in this respect, and settled there. This list shows the kabbalistic attributes associated with each nation and land. It is not a definitive list, and there are other opinions.

Table of Nations

Traditional Counting[1] Kabbalistic Counting

1. Gomerite Nation
2. Magogite Nation
3. Madaiite Nation
4. Yavanite Nation
5. Tuvalite Nation
6. Meshekhite Nation
7. Tirasite Nation
8. Ashkenazite Nation
9. Rifathite Nation
10. Togarmahite Nation
11. Elishahite Nation
12. Tarshishite Nation
13. Kittite Nation
14. Dodanite Nation
15. Khushite Nation
16. Mitzraite Nation
17. Putite Nation
18. Canaanite Nation
19. Sevaite Nation
20. Khushite-Chavilahite Nation
21. Savtahite Nation
22. Ra'amahite Nation
23. Savtekhaite Nation
24. Khushite-Shevaite Nation
25. Dedanite Nation
26. Nimrod
27. Mitzraite-Ludite Nation
28. 'Anamite Nation
29. Lehavite Nation
30. Naftuchite Nation
31. Pathrusite Nation
32. Kasluchite Nation
    (out of whom came Philistine Nation)
33. Kaftorite Nation
34. Sidonite Nation
35. Chethite Nation
36. Yevusite Nation
37. Amorite Nation
38. Girgashite Nation
39. Chivite Nation
40. 'Arkite Nation
41. Sinite Nation
42. Arvadite Nation
43. Tzemarite Nation
44. Chamathite Nation
45. 'Elamite Nation
46. Asshurite Nation
47. Arpakhshadite Nation
48. Ludite Nation
49. Aramite Nation
50. Utzite Nation
51. Chulite Nation
52. Getherite Nation
53. Mashite Nation
54. Shelachite Nation
55. Everite Nation
56. Pelegite Nation
57. Yoqtan Nation
58. Almodadite Nation
59. Shelefite Nation
60. Chatzarmavethite Nation
61. Yerachite Nation
62. Hadoramite Nation
63. Uzalite Nation
64. Diqlahite Nation
65. Ovalite Nation
66. Avimaelite Nation
67. Shevaite Nation
68. Ofirite Nation
69. Chavilahite Nation
70. Yovavite Nation


1. Magogite Nation - Chochmah shebe Chesed
2. Madaiite Nation - Binah shebe Chesed

3. Tuvalite Nation - Daat shebe Chesed
4. Meshekhite Nation - Chesed shebe Chesed
5. Tirasite Nation - Gevurah shebe Chesed
6. Ashkenazite Nation - Tiferet shebe Chesed
7. Rifathite Nation - Netzach shebe Chesed
8. Togarmahite Nation - Hod shebe Chesed
9. Elishahite Nation - Yesod shebe Chesed
10. Tarshishite Nation - Malchut shebe Chesed
11. Kittite Nation - Chochmah shebe Gevurah
12. Dodanite Nation - Binah shebe Gevurah


13. Putite Nation - Daat shebe Gevurah

14. Sevaite Nation - Chesed shebe Gevurah
15. Khushite-Chavilahite Nation - Gevurah shebe Gevurah
16. Savtahite Nation - Tiferet shebe Gevurah

17. Savtekhaite Nation - Netzach shebe Gevurah
18. Khushite-Shevaite Nation - Hod shebe Gevurah
19. Dedanite Nation - Yesod shebe Gevurah

20. Mitzraite-Ludite Nation - Malchut shebe Gevurah
21. 'Anamite Nation - Chochmah shebe Tiferet
22. Lehavite Nation - Binah shebe Tiferet
23. Naftuchite Nation - Daat shebe Tiferet
24. Pathrusite Nation - Chesed shebe Tiferet

25. Philistine Nation - Gevurah shebe Tiferet
26. Kaftorite Nation - Tiferet shebe Tiferet
27. Sidonite Nation - Netzach shebe Tiferet
28. Chethite Nation - Hod shebe Tiferet
29. Yevusite Nation - Yesod shebe Tiferet
30. Amorite Nation - Malchut shebe Tiferet
31. Girgashite Nation - Chochmah shebe Netzach
32. Chivite Nation - Binah shebe Netzach
33. 'Arkite Nation - Daat shebe Netzach
34. Sinite Nation - Chesed shebe Netzach
35. Arvadite Nation - Gevurah shebe Netzach
36. Tzemarite Nation - Tiferet shebe Netzach
37. Chamathite Nation - Netzach shebe Netzach
38. 'Elamite Nation - Hod shebe Netzach
39. Asshurite Nation - Yesod shebe Netzach

40. Ludite Nation - Malchut shebe Netzach

41. Utzite Nation - Chochmah shebe Hod
42. Chulite Nation - Binah shebe Hod
43. Getherite Nation - Daat shebe Hod
44. Mashite Nation - Chesed shebe Hod




45. Almodadite Nation - Gevurah shebe Hod
46. Shelefite Nation - Tiferet shebe Hod
47. Chatzarmavethite Nation - Netzach shebe Hod
48. Yerachite Nation - Hod shebe Hod
49. Hadoramite Nation - Yesod shebe Hod
50. Uzalite Nation - Malchut shebe Hod
51. Diqlahite Nation - Chochmah shebe Yesod
52. Ovalite Nation - Binah shebe Yesod
53. Avimaelite Nation - Daat shebe Yesod
54. Shevaite Nation - Chesed shebe Yesod
55. Ofirite Nation - Gevurah shebe Yesod
56. Chavilahite Nation - Tiferet shebe Yesod
57. Yovavite Nation - Netzach shebe Yesod
58. Shemian Nation - Hod shebe Yesod
59. Arpakhshadian Nation - Yesod shebe Yesod
60. Shelachian Nation - Malchut shebe Yesod
61. Everian Nation - Chochmah shebe Malchut
62. Pelegian Nation - Binah shebe Malchut
63. Reuian Nation - Daat shebe Malchut
64. Serugian Nation - Chesed shebe Malchut
65. Nachorian Nation - Gevurah shebe Malchut
66. Nachorite Nation - Tiferet shebe Malchut
67. Lotite Nation - Netzach shebe Malchut
68. Ishmaelite Nation - Hod shebe Malchut
69. Esavite Nation - Yesod shebe Malchut
70. Israelite Nation - Malchut shebe Malchut

61 of these nations are identicle in each list making a conflict only in the identities of the remaining 9 (or 11 if one uses the Arizal count of 72 nations) from the total listed above of 80.

Glossary

  • Chochmah means wisdom, insight
  • Binah means comprehension, understanding
  • Daat means factual knowledge
  • Chesed means kindness, inclusiveness, merging
  • Gevurah means strictness, limiting, definition, clarity
  • Tiferet means beauty, balance, communication
  • Netzach means victory, talent
  • Hod means splendor, riches
  • Yesod means foundation, formation, action
  • Malchut means kingship, authority, final form
  • shebe means "within"

Categorizing Modern Faiths

There have been many attempts to trace the traditional biblical nations in the Genesis 10-11 narrative to modern day ethnic groups. It is most likely that a credible lineage is no longer possible to achieve and that it may not be all that important. As we see in later Rabbinic literature the "seventy nations" are seen as the archetypes for distinct approaches to understanding, sometimes called "seventy paths" to G-d.

Any attempt to map the current world faiths into the framework of diversity encompassed by the above seventy attributes would be difficult and subjective. However such a mapping would allow a way to categorize modern faiths. It could be the beginning of a legal framework for analyzing the relationship of each modern faith to authentic Jewish tradition, and in this context we can perhaps begin to speak about its possible rectification.

It is obvious that the national faith of the Israelite Nation is Judaism, and Rabbinical literature has clearly stated that the Esavite Nation is associated with Christianity and the Ishmaelite Nation with Islam. Relying on definitions of these attributes from other sources in Jewish literature it can be seen that following top seven general categories appear:

  • attribute shebe Chesed - Philosophical religions, Greeks & Hellenism. Religions which attempt to see the divine in everything.
  • attribute shebe Gevurah - Ascetic religions. Religions which see physicality as an obstacle to the divine.
  • attribute shebe Tiferet - Oratory religions. Religions which stress sermons, dogma and apologetics
  • attribute shebe Netzach - Far Eastern religions. Religions stressing levels of perception and states of consciousness.
  • attribute shebe Hod - Sacramental religions. Religions stress the use of sacraments and other objects for inspiration and imitation of the divine.
  • attribute shebe Yesod - "Works" oriented religions. Religions stressing charity and other good works, for the pursuit of righteousness.
  • attribute shebe Malchut - Formed religions. Each of the above, in a fully formed, articulated and demonstrated fashion.

If it is true that the seventy nations are related to the seventy souls that went to egypt, and the seventy "viewpoints" of the judges of the sanhedrin, it means that the seventy nations are a "rainbow" of religious viewpoints. This would imply that there might be a way to match people with the mode of faith most suited to them, such as the test provided on BeliefNet What Religion am I?

Reference

  1. Pesikta Zutresa; Torah Sheleimah 9:110