On Bardon's Spelling of "Quabbalah"
With the new English translation, Merkur Publishing has changed Bardon's spelling from
'Quabbalah' to 'Kabbalah'. What was formerly "KTQ" is now "KTK"
Bardon's spelling is unique and, in my opinion, significant and this change is one reason why I prefer the older KTQ over the new KTK.
In Hebrew, the work "kabbalah" is spelled with the Letters Qooph-Beth-Lamed-Heh. But Hebrew characters are not Roman in nature like English. Therefore every transliteration of a Hebrew Letter is an approximation of its phonetic. For example the Letter "Qooph" is indicated variously by 'K', 'C' and 'Q'. All three are equally correct, but 'K' is by far the best since is has no softness like the 'C' often does, nor does it invoke the 'W' sound like the 'Q'. "Qooph/Kooph" is a back of the mouth, tongue to the roof, hard sound, which in English is best approximated by the 'K'.
However, the different transliterations have come to mean different things in the English speaking world. Jewish kabbalah is almost exclusively signified by the 'K', whereas Western Hermetic kabbalah is almost always spelled with a 'Q'. Christian kabbalah is often spelled with a 'C'.
However, Bardon is the only instance that I've ever found who uses a 'Qu' and consciously introduces the 'W' sound. But there is no 'W' consonant in the Hebrew language! In Hebrew this phonetic would be accomplished through a combination of vowel points, not with a consonant (i.e. Letter).
As I point out in my commentary on *KTQ* (I did not use KTK), this is the clue that makes the final piece of the puzzle regarding the relationship between Bardon's Quabbalah and the Jewish Kabbalah, fall into place. This points the student to the connection between the correspondences of Bardon's 'W' and the Sepher Yetzirah's 'Qooph'.
My best to you,
:) Rawn Clark
10 Mar 2002