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Eleazar of Worms, MS British Museum 737, fols. 165b-166a. Cf. MSS Paris 825, fol. 193a, Munich 92, fol. 1a.

Jewish Mysticism
YHWH–His unique, glorious and awesome name. We will explain its meaning according to the capacity to speak and to know about the glory of the supernal name of the Lord and His fear… The [name] is transmitted only to the meek who do not get angry, and to the God-fearing who perform the commandments of their Creator. It is only transmitted over water, as it is written, “The voice of the Lord is over the waters” (Ps. 29-3). Before the master teaches his disciples they should bathe in water and immerse themselves in [the ritual bath that measures] forty se’ah. They should don white clothes and fast on the day that he will teach them [the name], and they should stand in the water up to their ankles. Then the master opens his mouth in fear and says- “Blessed are You, O Lord, our God, king of the universe, Lord, God of Israel, You are one and Your name is one, and You have commanded us to conceal Your great name, for Your name is awesome. Blessed are You, Lord, who reveals His secret to those who fear Him, the One who knows all secrets.” The master and his disciples should look at the water and say “The ocean sounds, O Lord, the ocean sounds its thunder, the ocean sounds its pounding, more majestic than the breakers of the sea is the Lord, majestic on high” (Ps. 93-3-4). “The voice of the Lord is over the waters, the God of glory thunders, the Lord, over the mighty waters” (ibid. 29-3). “The waters saw You, O God, the waters saw You and were convulsed; the very deep quaked as well” (ibid. 77-17). “Your way was through the sea, Your path, through the mighty waters; Your tracks could not be seen” (ibid., 20). Afterwards they should go near the water or to a synagogue or study-house where there is water in a pure vessel, and the master should say- “Blessed are You, Lord, our God, king of the universe, who has sanctified us with His commandments and commanded us and separated us from the nations and revealed to us His secrets and instructed us in the knowledge of His great and awesome name.

Translated by Elliot Wolfson in Through a Speculum that Shines- Vision and Imagination in Medieval Jewish Mysticism, Princeton- Princeton University Press, 1994.

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