|Week of March 14, 2010 Shabbat Nissan 5, 5770|
Please note that it is important for you to take 5 minutes each day and perform the ritual for Nissan as suggested by Rabbi Issac Luria. The link is immediately to the left or go to www.yeshshem.com and click on the Nissan Ritual at the top of the page.
The name of this weeks Parasha is Vayikra which means "And he called"! One can ask the question "Who is He?". Most people answer that it is Hashem who is calling to Moshel. Yet it can also be interpreted as Moshe calling to another Moshe or even a different consciousness of Moshe. Do you ever think about yourself in the third person? Do you ever ask yourself "What should i do, (put your name here))? Reread the first Verse with that understanding. It will give you some additional insights into what this Parasha is about.
On its surface level the Parasha is about "offerings" which we understand to mean animal sacrifice. After all the second verse refers to cattle and flocks. But what if cattle is a code word for our animal passions? What if flocks are a code word for bringing balance (central column) into our lives? After all these animal sacrifices are called Korban which comes from the root "to bring close". With what entity am i supposed to get closer? HaShem or my own spiritual nature. Or are they truly the same? which is taught in both the Talmud and in the Zohar.
There are 21 spaces in this Parasha. 21 is the Gematria of Ehyeh - Part of the Name of God given to Moshe at the burning bush. Ehyeh translates as "I will be" or "I AM". 21 is the Gematria of the spiritual part of the name HaShem - Yood Hay Vav - without the physical world or final Hay. In essence 21 represents the spiritual potential to which we are all meant to rise. Another way of understanding 21 is that it is 7 + 7+ 7. Or 3 times 7.
7 represents the lower 7 sephirot. 7 represents a body without the governance of a mind. Using Anger as an example. What happens when we get angry. Our emotions and ego take over acting as our Mind. Our mind leaves us. This is the meaning of these 21 spaces. Do not allow your emotions to control and do not allow your mind to not feel your emotions. One needs to remain in balance. Getting angry takes us away from balance. The only method back to balance, the Torah teaches, is through removing our animal nature that allows our minds to come back to balance with our hearts. This is the purpose of animal sacrifice and this is the purpose of listening to the Torah this week. The First Shabbat in the month of Nissan.
Nissan repesents control of WAR or battles coming from the Planet of War - Mars. The only War that has meaning in our physical world is our war against our desire to receive for oneself alone. And this war must first be fought in the spiritual levels before we can win in the physical world. This is the meaning of Pesach, the removal of Chametz, and the Mikva called the Crossing of the Yam Suf (Red Sea, Reed Sea, or Sea of End).
Animal Korban (sacrifice) is preparation for that spiritual war against the desire to receive for oneself alone. There are 3 components to this sacrifice. This is usually not taught by Rabbi's today as it gets into the discussion about animal cruelty which they don't want to discuss. This is because the animals knew this was their Tikune (corrections) and they lined up to be sacrificed. Yet no one believes that today because we don't have the experience without the physical Temple. This truth can be demonstrated today but our Rabbi's today are trying to use logic to relate to something that needs to be understood intuitively. They do not have the experience in how to teach this. The Mekubalim explain it intuitively. They say Do not believe what i say but try these different rituals and see if they work for you in your life. If yes - study Kabbalah. If no- don't study it. They know it will always work if you are honest with yourself.
In my own life experience, i saw animals line up on the evening of Kaparot for Yom Kipur. One can sense the mood of the birds as they wait to achieve their Tikune (correction). Of course this is easier to experience if one has the certainty that the bird i received (picked) is meant for my cleansing as well.
The 3 components of the Korban are 1) the confession and consciousness of the person bringing the Korban; 2) The animal; and 3) the consciousness of the Cohen doing the Schita (slaughtering of the animal). According to Halacha - all 3 must be in the correct consciousness to acheive the Korban - the getting closer to HaShem. These 3 relate to the 3 sevens discussed above.
There are different categories of Korbanot offered. This is not made clear in the reading of the book of Vayikra. There are communal sacrifices and individual sacrifices. There are Peace Sacrifices and Sin Sacrifices. There are sacrifices called Oleh (elelvated) which are burned completely leaving no part of the sacrifice usable in the physical world. There are sacrifices with parts of the animal shared by the Kohen and other parts burned like the Oleh sacrifice and not usable. Also there are sacrifices shared with the Cohen and with the person bringing the sacrifie and also possibly the larger community. Each sacrifice needs to be understood on these 3 classifications and also for those that are shared with people there is the understanding of where one can eat the sacrifice - the Temple, the Temple courtyard and the environs of Jerusalem. All of these classifications relate to the Holiness of the Korban. When one hears the reading keep these classifications in mind yet understand them as all being in unity. A difficult task.
Please look at Chapter 2 Verse 4. This verse has a space both before and after it and therefore is unusual. There are 15 words and 58 Letters. 15 relates to the upper worlds; 58 relates to comfort and the Name Noach. The translation of this verse is "When you offer a meal offering that is baked in an oven, it shall be of fine flour: unleavened loaves mixed with oil, or unleavened wafers smeared with oil."
Why does HaShem allow the lowly inexpensive meal offering and also require that it be Chametz free. In essence this is Matzah. Why?
Chametz is a metaphor for your ego. There is a spiritual law; Where you have ego HaShem can not abide and leaves. Why does HaShem allow the meal offering? Becasue it has little honor from people. (In Temple Times, people who were poor brought meal offerings since it was less expensive. therefore it did not have the honor of an animal sacrifice.) Learn this spiritual lesson well. Where people are impressed is not what impresses HaShem. Where people are not paying attention that is where HaShem is waiting for you! Do what is right for you, not what your friends, family, or neighbors think! This is one of the lessons of the meal offering!
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Announcement 3: This is a weekly e-letter about the Parasha. Sometimes there will be all of the links - sometimes due to time limitations there will not be be all of the links.
One of the main purposes of the Mitzvah of Hearing the Torah on Shabbat Morning is to receive the Metaphysical Energy we will need during the next week. Please strive to hear the Torah Reading each week for this benefit.
Chanoch Ben Yaacov
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