- Secrets of Noah's Ark
- Shem the Craftsman
- Book of Raziel
- Zohar and Sefer Yetzira
- One Big Picture
- Primordial Torah
- From Adam Until Moshiach
Name Gematria and Analysis in Hebrew and Torah
Ever Wondered What Your Name Means In Jewish Sources?
Saturday, March 8, 2014
Wednesday, March 5, 2014
In The Tents of Shem
Rabbi David Katz
In Parashas Pekudei, the Mishkan is finalized, and is now ready for the mantle of being the official "Tent of Meeting" - a title and status that until now was in full possession of Moses. The Mishkan of course is the first fruits of the known command in the Torah, "Make for me a temple [to dwell in]," and now with Sinai over, and the entire people ready to move on with the Golden Calf behind them, the [mobile] Mishkan satisfies the wishes of God. They are now able to be fully mobile, holy, and potentially ready to enter the Land when the Lord beckons as such. What may come as a surprise however is that the blueprint concept/prototype is in fact not new or first introduced now; the original idea dates back at least as far as Shem, and his work on the Ark. All through history man has been making a vessel of the Divine or supernatural; from Adam in the Garden, we find the Tower of Bavel [Tower of Babylon], the Ark, the Mishkan, the Temples, etc. The aspect that we take away from this knowledge is that Craftsmanship is perhaps the most Messianic aspect of the entire Torah, such that Shem is listed as the Righteous Priest – straight from his work on the Ark. The further we delve into the Mishkan, and add the element of Shem on every level we are Blessed to find a tradition that literally is the bond [pun intended] between Gerim and Jews; this being the model [pun intended] for all of time.
There are a certain number of raw materials [OK – I am going to use constructive words intentionally, thus no longer being a pun, but reinforcing the project] that we must identify and set aside in order to erect the structure that allows us to further understand the spirituality in Torah craftsmanship, as epitomized by the Mishkan. The tools we need with the intention of connecting the dots are as follows: Moses, Shem, Mishkan, Gerim bringing Melacha [Creative product], Ger women and the Laver, House of Study, the concept of being a vessel [personal Mishkan – as it was originally intended to be] of the Divine, Moses' tent – and calling it in the "Ohel Moed" [Tent of Meeting], Tents of Shem, Noah's Blessing, The Golden Calf, The lost "jewelry" of their fall in sin, Messiah and the Mishkan, Torah and Prayer, Noah and his ark, the Ark and Shem, The Four Craftsmen of Redemption, The Book of Raziel [given to Adam], Solomon and his Temple, The Prophet Ezekiel – and his Temple, "learning about the Temple is building it, the Zohar as a "Noah's Ark", The Ger Code, Torah of Faith [Rebbe Nachman philosophy that through living we become "it"], Angelic attainment as Man, and the Primordial Temple/Dwelling. These are the tools and components that we need to draw a picture that will fully explain the peripheral world of our newly completed Mishkan in Parashas Pekudei.
The subject matter right out of the gate becomes a bit complex [yet we must realize that it is still ultimately simple] when we simultaneously draw upon several key matters, namely Shem and Moses, the Mishkan and the Ark, the builders then and now, the tents of Shem and Moses, and construction that comes from learning – for all of times as a principle. In essence once we consolidate our parts, we have created tangible devices to depict the story of just what this Mishkan represents.
In a simple over-view of things, the rambling story would sound like this: 1) Adam sinned and received the Book of Raziel; a Book of Torah inspiration 2) The Book inspired many, all the way to Noah 3) Noah gave it to Shem, and they learned how to detail the Ark from this inspiration 4) Shem becomes the master craftsman, and the embodiment of the Man/Chariot 'Kruv" [angelic man]; the Ark is actually vested in his wisdom more than Noah 5) Shem and his "Tents of Torah" [prophesied by Noah] are the antithesis of the Tower of Bavel 6) Shem's wisdom is contained in the Ark design by perfect engineering of action and learning 7) Shem is aimed only at Sinai 8) Sinai grafts Shem into Moses' Torah – through common inspiration and absolute unity in their souls and every other matter 9) Parashas Noah contains the wisdom of Shem in the Ark, thus the graft is accomplished 10) Moses grabs the "jewelry" [angelic levels] and the work from the Gerim, thus making a study hall for learning Torah, praying, Mishkan – study, etc. 11) Moses' tent is synonymous with Shem's Tent [an inheritance] and is the precursor to the Mishkan 12) dwelling in Moses' tent is the mastery of the original inspiration contained in the Book of Raziel, the Ark, Ezekiel's Temple, the Ger Code that spiritually reveals/builds the Temple, etc. 13) Moses' tent becomes the Mishkan, which becomes the inspiration of the Anointed [Messiah] symbolized by the Mishkan's anointed status 14) the anointed status is symbolic of Messiah, Elijah, the Gerim, and Malki Tzedek – the essence of the Four Craftsmen of Redemption [Targum Yonaton on the Mishkan, Mizbeach, and the Laver].
In real time the story would sound like this: Adam sinned and got the Book, then Shem and Noah made the boat, and passed its secrets onwards into Moses' lap, and then Moses wrote the Torah and included all previous inspiration; this serves as Parashas Noah, then Moses made a tent that became the source of Messianic wisdom known as the Soul of Moses, then the Mishkan was erected [through the special help of the Gerim], and it contains the code, wisdom, and knowledge – tradition to build the actual Temple, and finally we will be redeemed by means of this wisdom, through Jews and Gerim working together, specifically through these agencies of Wisdom and Torah. In one breath, that is the flow of events, with all of the elements provided above available to be inserted for context, such as the Tower of Bavel, and the other characters and vessels, etc. In essence, life can be looked at as one big art project that we are trying to figure out just what it is that we are supposed to build. The Mishkan is where we got a clear description of what it is, and combined with past and future events, we can begin to conceive this design and how it is to function. For all intents and purposes, this is the secret of the Third Temple.
Thus here we are and the Mishkan is completed, it is called the Tent of Meeting – a title previously held by Moses' Tent. Yet Moses retains his study tent, and it is synonymous with the prophesied Tents of Shem. Targum Yonaton Commentary states that Moses' tent contains the spiritual power that can return Man to the state of angelic being before any type of sin through the calf or Tree of Knowledge; this being by "sitting" in this tent, an d mastering the "Soul of Moses" – which uniquely termed the Tree of Life, the same Tree that Shem ate of and became his Torah. Thus this Torah of Shem [that was inspired by the Book of Raziel] became the basis of the Ark and Parashas Noah [as included by Moses by God's command]. Furthermore, with all of the momentum of wisdom from ancient texts, and craftsmanship in the Ark, and onwards into the Mishkan, Soloman's Temple, and the Third Temple, Jews and Gerim became destined to study and draw down priestly revelation that is promised to bring floor plans of the Third Temple, and even be the very anointing oil that will crown the Messiah and redemption team.
Making matters simple to understand, over topics like Ger code, ancient wisdom, Temples, Gerim and Jews, Shem, etc. is to look to the Zohar; for what it accomplishes is the consolidation of this entire mission in one comprehensive study work. For that, the Zohar rightfully terms itself as a Noah's Ark. For all intents and purposes, it is a reflection of Moses' tent, a Tent of Meeting, and the hidden scenes from the Mishkan. The Zohar within this context becomes the level of the Torah as described in the Midrash Rabbah's opening words, that the Torah is a Craftsman's tool.
The Torah began well before the World ever knew of Shem, and history will finish in a time that we will all have forgotten about Shem. The Torah was given, and through it we will always know Shem and his wisdom, and the Zohar is able to be written once the Torah of Moses is delivered at Sinai; encapsulating the builder's manual in supernatural fashion. Yet here we are in Pekudei, the Mishkan is finished, and it is now the official Tent of Meeting, one that is fully equipped with a study hall. Yet when we get to the soul of its functionality, we can really only turn to Noah and words of wisdom that he spoke, such that the Gerim carry this message all the way into the Third Temple. For Noah said, "Baruch Hashem, the God Shem…for they will dwell in the Tents of Shem." And as much as this is true, and indoctrinated into THE [One] Torah, we look forward to the building of the Third Temple, one that can only be built by the sons of Shem, and to be built only by a King. There are Four Craftsman of Redemption, of which Shem is the Righteous Priest - the master craftsman; one that anoints all three in their Craft… And among them [Shem is also dubbed] is Malki Tzedek…for from him is the wisdom that anoints the Messiah, from the place of Supernal Wisdom [Otzros Ramchal, Ramchal]. Amen Amen.
Don't miss the Video Class covering the Parasha In-Depth - Tonight at 11 P.M. Tzfat Time!
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Thursday, February 27, 2014
Wednesday, February 26, 2014
Covenant [Brit] of [Shalom] Peace
Rabbi David Katz
The Ger/Noahide Shabbat is a reality that will one day dominate the Seventh Day Worldwide in the Days of the Messiah. Gerim all over the planet will be able to rest, gain spiritual gifts throughout the week, and simultaneously keep the World going better than ever. They are destined to take their gift from the bitter waters of Marah, and turn it into the eternal delight of God's holiest day. This is a big difference from the antiquated party line that echoes death sentences and calls for the blood of the perpetrator of God's Covenant; this is the Covenant of Peace, one that the Bahir sates as, "a great source of Joy for the King." Shabbat is the fractal code that completes creation, and very much a proper covenant; it also just happens to be the first and most essential step in leaving behind what was, and entering the World [of the Ger] that came out of Sinai. In that World, the knowledge of God fills the air, and the World would be deemed as complete; Shabbat then is the motor that drives this mission into fruition.
The pre-present-post Sinai experience and revelation to some extent is an historical banner of the Shabbat. From being commanded and given Shabbat at Marah [pre-Sinai; bitter waters – over the Shabbat, and thus being proven to "the People" how sweet it is, as Moses placed "it" there for "him" as law. "Him" refers to every human there, and the words "placed for him" conveniently spells "Shalom," as the Shabbat is the main focus.], educated in Shabbat through the 10 Commandments, and the entire Mishkan [post golden calf] ensemble is one long strand of the evolution of time into a Shabbat mentality and inclination. One could say in a sense, this is where everyone involved realized and connected to their own innate holiness, something that the Book of Genesis "already knew" from Adam to Seth, Hanoch, Noah, Shem, Avot, and the Tribes. Greater Israel is now ready to take its mantle as the World's flagship in promoting God [Jews and Gerim] through the perpetual holy day in our lives that changes the World – Shabbat.
Our up to date status is our Parasha, for the aforementioned details have led us directly into the Mishkan, which ultimately is the Talmudic [scholastic] definition of Shabbat; a practical and technical approach to responsibly understand the minute details of the Shabbat. The Mishkan was made from thirty-nine creative, thought provoking labors or crafts. These crafts are the same practices by which God created the World; ergo the Mishkan is a microcosm of the World. Now that we are leaving the first half of the Torah in our wake, and soon to progress to actually function in the Mishkan in the Book of Vayikra, now is the most opportune time to explain the inner dimension of the Mishkan, the face of the mission of Israel. The master bolt that holds everything together is the Shabbat, and concordantly we are addressing it now in Vayakahel.
The Parsha takes of these matters into account, without wasting any time, as we are immediately initiated into the concepts of the labors and parameters of the basic and essential Shabbat for the Jews and Gerim. On a profound note, the Torah takes liberty in just three concise verses, to outline the extremely complex issues of the "how to's" of Shabbat, through taking the discussion to a place of sublime simplicity. The text reads as follows, "…these are the things [39 labors] that Hashem commended to do them: 'On six days, you are to do labor [39 –ish], and on the Seventh Day should be for ya'll Holy, a total Shabbat for Hashem; all who engage in Labor [39-ish] shall surely be put to death.' Do not kindle a flame in any of your locations on the Shabbat Day.'" This text may seem straightforward at first glance – either speaking to Jews or Gerim; yet what we find is a classic case of "From the Mouth of God – We heard two/too." We are standing before a perfectly woven tapestry of a simultaneous dialogue, such that we are receiving the tradition of Shabbat for the Ger and Jew in one ear shot! Rightfully so, the Oral Law clarifies these matters, and explains these three verses in laid out terms that anyone alive can find their place in the Shabbat World, and yet remarkably, it all still is sourced right here, in our Parasha's opening words.
The Jew and the Ger, as many know, have two distinctively different streams of the Shabbat; this stems from the Command vs. the Gift. As a Jewish Command, the Jewish People are prohibited in the performance of thirty-nine labors on the Seventh Day. From this level of observance, quite literally an entire culture has been spawned, and accordingly has been the face of the Jewish People practically since the inception of the Mishkan itself. Jewish Orthodoxy goes as far as to say any religious person is defined through "Shomer Shabbos" – a keeper of Shabbat, an objective display of one's place with God. For the Shomer Shabbos Jew, our three verses seem pretty straight forward, and seem to serve as a nice rudimentary introduction or basis of all Shabbat ritualistic behavior. Although this has served many through the perpetuation of time, Israel has a Brother, who also is rooted here – The Ger [Noahide]. As we will see, the other side of the coin equally contains his path, alongside The Jew, yet his is fantastically unique to him and his soul as well.
The Talmud Krisos 9a gives the Torah's most accurate outline of a proper Ger [Toshav] Shabbat. The nature of the Ger Shabbat is one that traverses many planes, namely his turn away from idolatry from adhering to Ger ideals in the Torah and from the Divine Inscription within the Ten Commandments to name a few. In the Talmud it is listed there three categorical decrees of observance [from that of a holiday, intermediary days, and a mundane day – although aware of the Seventh Day], and the Ten Commandments consistently shows the bestowal of the Shabbat gift to the Ger [Toshav, Tzedek – both non-Jews with subtle distinctive differences], an expression of his relationship with the Commanded Jew. Granted there is a level of relative simplicity in the Talmud, however the Ten Commandments offers an endless array of scenarios and logistics, that with creative thought [such as to our "Melacha" of the Parsha – craft/work from creative thought] one can see the true Divine nature of the Shabbat of the Ger.
The Ger Shabbat as brought down astutely in the Parasha has one massive sign post that this is definitely a discussion for the Gerim – the transfer/kindling of fire. The Jewish holidays [not Shabbat] offer a leniency that allows for cooking under the pretext of "soul food" – "allowing the body to benefit," even through normally prohibited measures, such as cooking. In fact, the entire nature of these three verses openly compares and contrasts the Shabbat in face of the holidays, yet the discussion is without question a Shabbat discourse; ergo this is to highlight the participation of the Gerim in Shabbat as brought down in the Talmud. Throughout the rest of the Parasha the inclusion of the Ger [and on a very serious spiritual inclination] is utterly profound, and there are impressions [such that are appropriately in reference materials] of the magnitude of the Ger in Vayakahel.
Some of the more penetrating ideas and concepts are as follows: the ability to study the Melachot [creative labors] in order to know how to keep Shabbat [with Jews or as a convert or to develop one's knowledge within the realm of Ger Tzedek], ability to identify the material in both the Oral and Written Torah with Divine predictability, the prominence of the "Ger Code" – concerning the Mishkan/Mikdash dimensions, the concept of Soul Mazal of one's name – such that on Shabbat our Soul/Mazal is more pronounced [the Prophet Is. Ch. 40 details mazal and names, and lists Abraham as the prime example], the concept of perceiving the Shechinah on Shabbat [as the Prophet Is. States 58:13-14], the Kabbalah of the spiritual Worlds in association of the Mishkan and Shabbat, Derech Eretz and hard [allowed] labor on Shabbat [along with Creative thought], and the ability to defeat the evil inclination – while taking one's position in the highest spiritual realm as a rectified being. The vernacular of the Ger and "code" if you will, are the lent vessels in transmitting these precious secrets; perforce the Ger has inherited them.
We have just gone through many Parshiot that all look the same, when in fact they are all very different. In order, they are as follows: 1) Trumah – post Sinai and commanded in the Mishkan and concept 2) Tetzaveh – the priests who operate such an apparatus 3) Ki Sisa – the episode that called for the Mishkan 4) Vayakahel – the construction itself 5) Pekudei – the receipt. This is the perfect example of cause effect, prophecy and wisdom, and brokering/executing spirituality from a place of power to implementation. Combine this with the Messianic secrets within, such that define Moshiach and the Third Temple, and this is yet another unique hotspot [of Mochin/Intellect] in the Torah.
The Torah has many flavors, whether it is in halacha, midrash, scripture, redemption, characters, plotlines, etc. In Kabbalah the intellect shines through the tools of Pardes [the mystical orchard], and shows exactly what is underneath the Torah on a Divine Level. However that is all on the sublime microcosmic revelation. If we step back for a change, we can see a vast macro image, and this collage is none other than the Shabbat. To summarize the Parasha, and for that matter life, it all boils down to one thing: repair our souls and have a relationship with God, The Creator. How nice, and even glorious it will be, when Jews and Gerim will sit together, and take in one Universal Shabbat, in a Covenant of Peace….I'll even bring THE gefilte fish if you bring the chrain….הנה מה טוב ומה נעים שבת אחים גם יחד - "Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!"
Audio/Visual In-Depth Lesson From Article Wednesday 11 P.M. Tzfat Time!
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Monday, February 24, 2014