The term Shoshan Sodot is the male Mystical Rose. Rabbi Avraham ha-Levi Abulafia and Rabbi Moshe ben Yaacov ha-Goleh wrote books about mystical Judaism entiled "Shoshan Sodot". Recently in 2002 a very old copy of the "Shoshan Sodot" by Rabbi Moshe ben Yaacov ha Goleh was found in a Western Ausralian monastery. This manuscript was given by the New Norcia monastery to the Perth Jewish community. It is now on loan to Israel for further study. This manuscript with some other Hebrew manuscripts were given to the Monastery's Abbot by Thomas Williams who was a wandering Jew. Willow Gully Station- Home of the Williams Family
Eliza's grandfather Colonel Moses Pollard (son of John Pollard and Elizabeth Williams) was an American who owned his own ship and he sailed to England, Italy and the Holy Land. He visited his Pollard relatives in Sussex where his brother William lived. The whole of William Pollard's family later moved to the Arklow/Kilmagig area in Wicklow Ireland. Thomas Williams and his wife Eliza Pollard (also called Leason)joined them in Wicklow in 1837. Arklow/ Kilmagig area of Wicklow was the ancestral home of Thomas Williams where his grandfather Solomon Williams was a Jewish glazier and goldsmith. Moses Pollard embraced Judaism and married Lea Segal of the Holy Land as his second wife. Their son Phinchas was also called William Pollard or Leason. Phinchas was the father of Eliza (Lea) who married Thomas Williams. Phinchas was married to Miriam Horodenker.
Thomas' son John Williams married a Catholic Honora Morrissey and Thomas often stayed with them at 'Willow Gully' station Northampton [52 kilometres from Geraldton] and then travelled all over Western Australia visiting his children and grandchildren as well as his other relatives.
His nephew Mr McLarty lived at Edenvale in Pinjarra and today there is a wonderful Heritage Rose Garden there. Thomas' greatgrandson Leo Bartram of "Emerald Hills" in Beverley once had a beautiful Rose Garden surrounding his heritage homestead on his farm. He also stayed with his numerous granddaughters at such places as 'Talbot House' in York. Thomas later in life apprehended a thief who commented "I would have got away if it hadn't been for that old Spanish bastard!" Avondale Farm:Home of Thomas' daughter Jane Bartram (nee Williams) in Beverley
From the "Maccabean" Jewish weekly:
"KABBALISTIC MANUSCRIPT FOUND IN NEW NORCIA MONASTERY
A few months ago Shane Dowling, who works in the library of the New Norcia monastery, discovered a had-written Hebrew manuscript that had been lying for many years wrapped in paper in an old cupboard. Interested to find out exactly what type of manuscript it was, the head librarian, Susan Johnston contacted Rabbi Shalom Coleman and faxed him the manuscript’s title page.
Seeing that the manuscript related to kabbalah, Rabbi Coleman passed the information over to Rabbi Moshe Y. Bernstein, who has a particular interest in the study of Jewish mysticism.
Last week, on Rosh Chodesh Kislev, Wednesday, November 6th, Rabbi Bernstein organised a visit to New Norcia to view the manuscript. Accompanying him were rabbinic colleagues and Jewish Studies staff members Rabbi Elchanan Lewis and Rabbi Moshe Rothchild. Also, joining the rabbinic delegation was David Solomon, an academic expert in kabbalistic translations and manuscripts, who was in Perth for the levaya and shiva for his father, the late Dr. Geoff Solomon.
The Perth delegation met with Abbot Placid Spearritt, Susan Johnston and some of the other monks and monastery workers, where they were presented with a copy of the kabbalistic book-- Shoshan Sodot-- for examination.
The copy at the New Norcia monastery appears to be an antique copy of the original work, which was written by Rabbi Moshe ben Yaakov, possibly a student from the mystic school of Nachmanides (Ramban) in 1495. The book is a veritable encyclopaedia of kabbalistic thought and practice, containing many secrets which the author felt obliged to write down to ensure their preservation through a time of great oppression (the Inquisition and Spanish expulsion) for the Jewish people.
Later, the rabbinic delegation was given the opportunity to visit the monastery library, which contains many other volumes of Hebrew texts, though none of them in the highly esoteric and ancient category of the Shoshan Sodot.
The monastery was kind enough to agree to scan the pages of the manuscript onto a CD, which will be compared with other existing copies of the manuscript. Certain rabbis in Israel and Europe are also being consulted due to the extremely sensitive nature of such an esoteric manuscript..."
"SHOSHAN SODOT RETURNED TO THE JEWISH PEOPLE
On Tuesday, December 10  Abbot Placid Spearritt of the Benedictine Order of New Norcia presented the manuscript copy of the kabbalistic text Shoshan Sodot, recently found in a cupboard in the monastery to the Jewish community, represented by the President of the Council of Orthodox Rabbis and Educators, Rabbi David Y A Freilich and Director of Jewish Studies at Carmel School, Rabbi Moshe Yehuda Bernstein. The abbot’s decision to restore the book, a hand-written copy whose date has not yet been established, follows an appeal by the Council to which the New Norcia Community responded most positively.
The original Shoshan Sodot, written by Rabbi Moshe ben Yakov Ha-goleh of Kiev in 1495, is a work comprising elements of theoretical, meditative and practical Kabbalah based on the teachings of the Ramban (R. Moshe ben Nachman). It is different in nature than the more prolific works emerging from the teachings of the Arizal, R. Yitchak Luria of 16th century Tsfat, and thus classified as “pre-Lurianic”. It contains kavanot, or meditative visualisations of Divine Names with their appropriate letter and vowel permutations as well as those to be utilised in the recitation of the Shma and Amidah prayers. There are chart illustrations of the 10 Sefirot (the 10 Emanations of Creation) and their combinations into partzufim (Expressions) reflecting various mystical states of consciousness. The book concludes with a commentary on the ancient kabbalistic text (which some attribute to Avraham Avinu) of Sefer Yetzira, discussing the Hebrew letters of the alef bet with their astrological and sefirotic correspondences.
A Baal Shem Tov story appearing in a collection of Eliahu Klein entitled The Last Temptation of a Kabbalist (http://hasidicstories.com/Stories/The_Baal_Shem_Tov/temptation.html) makes reference to the book’s mystical powers and how it was on one occasion fatally misused."
On receiving the manuscript Rabbi Freilich expressed his profound gratitude to the monks of New Norcia on behalf of C.O.R.E., the Perth Jewish community as well as for klal yisroel (the entire Jewish people). In Rabbi Freilich’s reply to Abbot’s affirmative decision, he wrote: “…the generosity of the New Norcia Community imbues the concept of interfaith dialogue with depth, vitality and profound significance.”
Rabbi Bernstein, who was one of the initial party of four to investigate the book, said, “The restoration of the Shoshan Sodot to its Jewish source is a great mitzvah, and I have to commend Abbot Spearritt for his wisdom and ability to empathise with the spiritual value a book like this has for our people. I’ve been told that its return will also mean a tikkun neshama [soul rectification] for its author in Gan Eden.” He said the entire story of the retrieval of this book is still obscured in mystery on many different levels, including the mundane one of how it ended up in the monastery.
While a stamp on the title page indicates it was once in Jewish hands, it has been historically “hidden from view” in New Norcia for nearly half- a-century. In 1966, however, Mr Harold Boas, a member of the Perth Jewish community, sent a microfilm copy of the text to Hebrew University, which has on record the existence of such a manuscript in “a monastery in Western Australia”. The monastery also has record of an inquiry made concerning a “Cabbalistic text” from around the same period of time.
Meanwhile, the Shoshan Sodot saga is extending its boundaries as David Solomon has been immersing himself in archival records in the British Museum and Oxford to compare the New Norcia version with the other extant copies on record (there are 17 known copies) as well as to shed more light on the mystery of its date. There is a possibility that it could be as old as the 16th century. Rabbi Eli Lewis, who is currently in Israel, where he has consulted the Admor of Biala and other rabbinic authorities, has presented digital CD copies of the text to Bar-Ilan University and Hebrew University."
New Norcia - A slice of Spain in outback Western Australia