sefirah (sfee-RAH) listen
sefirot (sfee-ROHT) listen


  • n. One of the 10 emanations (varying aspects) of the Divine presence.

  • n. The daily count of the Omer.

  • n. The Omer; the seven-week period strxetching from the second day of Pesach to the day before Shavuot, during which it is traditional to count each day in Hebrew.

Example Sentences

  • "Also worth mentioning, there are various 'schools' regarding the Sefirot and multiple ways to understand it. So if you are going to 'believe in' it -- rather than just acknowledge it as a concept -- you have to pick a 'school' to follow. Today, who has the depth of understanding to do this?" (source)

  • “The famous revolt of the Warsaw ghetto occurred during Sefirah.” (NJY)

Languages of Origin

  • Textual Hebrew
  • Yiddish


  • סְפִירוֹת 'lit. emanations' > Y ספֿירה sfire

    • Who Uses This

      • Religious: Jews who are engaged in religious observance and have some Jewish education
      • Kabbalah


      • North America


      • The New Joys of Yiddish, by Leo Rosten and Lawrence Bush (New York, 2003[1968]).
      • The JPS Dictionary of Jewish Words, by Joyce Eisenberg and Ellen Scolnic, (Philadelphia, 2001).
      • Dictionary of Jewish Usage: A Popular Guide to the Use of Jewish Terms, by Sol Steinmetz (Lanham, MD, 2005).

      Alternative Spellings

      sfirah, sefira, sfira, sefiros, Sefiros Haomer, Sefirot Haomer, Sefires Haomer, Sfires Haomer, Sefiros Ha-omer, Sefirot Ha-omer, Sefires Ha-omer, Sfires Ha-omer, Sfire, Sfires


  • Plural sefirot.

    "This is one of the theories central to the Jewish mystical tradition, or Kabbalah. According to this tradition, the highest emanation of God (Ein Sof) created and rules the universe through these aspects. By influencing the sefirot, people can cause God to send forces of compassion or judgment to earth. To return to God, the soul must negotiate each of these levels. Each of the 10 sefirot has several unique names; common ones include crown or knowledge, wisdom, understanding, lovingkindness, strength, beauty, victory, splendor, foundation, and sovereignty." (JPS)

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