amen

Uttered at the end of a prayer or hymn, meaning ‘so be it.’

“Amen” is the modern English pronunciation of the ancient aramaic word Ahmeyn or Ahmeen which means “sealed in faith”, “cubit”, “assuredly” or more literally “from this rooted earth may all my actions flow.

The tri-consonant root of the letters alef, mem and nun – the amn sound – pivots upon a meaning of “absolute”, “firm, rooted earth”, “rooted center”, “pivotal importance” and “cubit”. What would be the common thread of meaning which runs through all four of these possible definitions? They are all “absolute” in their observation! The firm, rooted earth beneath our feet is absolute. The rooted center of a galilee – the ancient Aramaic and Hebrew word for spinning wheel – is absolute. And how about cubit? Cubit was an absolute perception of measurement, as in “this brick is absolutely one cubit”. The inherent quality of the word ahemyn is that it is an affirmation of absoluteness, of a movement emanating from an absolute, true rooted center.

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