If there is one Torah thought towards which our work regarding the inner light of Torah focuses, it is Shema Yisrael Hashem Elokeinu, Hashem Echad. This daily prayer expresses the idea that all there is in the world is Hashem, that He is One and is the Only Power and the primary Cause of everything.
The whole world is filled with the simple unity of Hashem’s compassion.
He conceals Himself with many appearances – Elokim.
Yet all is He.
And yet He desires a world and gives people real free will to form a separate identity from Him – a being made in His Image – yet with a unique mission through which we unify His Name.
How do we receive the tremendous gift of His Light into our created being and unify His Name? How do we not get caught up in the self-image related distractions that are our first reaction, our natural development, and seemingly our identity? These are the questions that Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai brought answers to.
The most compassionate thing anyone can do is to give us a clear understanding of the “handbook” of life. By so doing, Rashbi gives us the teachings we need to navigate the constricted consciousness that stands ready to claim that precious simple unity of Hashem’s compassion as the power source for the survival of the darkness that conceals the truth.
The more emunah that we have – the more faith in Hashem – the more we may move towards seeing that our apparent identities as we experience life are only a starting point. In truth, we need a sense of what an identity is in order to reveal our true identity as made in the image of Hashem and placed in a body so that we may be a keyboard, a cursor on the screen, to do His Will.
The more we understand about our painful moments, the more we see how the natural intellect that is so sensitive to the body and animal soul and ego is really incomplete because it does not “know” the compassion of Hashem as its real truth, its own Source of both power and simcha.
Without knowing the compassion of Hashem, we get caught up in natural thinking, which is limited to checking back with who? The one in charge of nature, the Soton. Now this is not to demonize life! It is Torah true that Hashem gives the Soton rulership over nature and that He hides within – Elokim – in order that we have a test for our real free will. We are not evil! However, although Hashem conceals Himself, should we further conceal Him, we are feeding the forces of evil because evil is that which obscures the truth of His Love and Oneness. Any obstruction is therefore called evil.
Every moment, through our breath, we are given life. Light is shining upon us and through us. We have a soul and a body, filled and surrounded by the simple unity of Hashem’s compassion.
Trust in this is what makes that truth tangible in our lives and helps us through our tests rather than get trapped in the barriers of our thinking that otherwise further conceal Hashem or place power in the hands of anything or anyone other than Hashem.
To those without emunah and bitachon, our light is easily caught up in fearful or angry thoughts that lead us to think we need to pursue a resolution through our survival instincts’ messages. Often we feel justified in speaking or acting in ways that are damaging to ourselves and others. Without realizing it, we often accept the messages of our natural thinking, believing it is for our own good, when in reality we have been caught in the feedback loop of the intellect referring back only to the self-image of the animalistic soul. The Arizal calls this immature bina, and teaches that our bina must be connected to chochma, awareness of Hashem, His Love and Compassion, and Torah in order for us to regain the strength to withstand what would capture our life force and bring it into the darkness.
May we have mercy on our own souls on this day of Lag B’Omer and move forward a step in comprehending that all there is in the world is Hashem’s simple compassion. May Hashem bless us with more emunah and reliance on Him, bitachon, so that we may be the channel He designs us to be in order to flow the Light He is sending through us into the world as compassion without it getting caught up in the darkness and stuck bound and gagged feeding concealment.
May we realize where we are caught in barriers due to the intellect-self image looping. May we strengthen ourselves with emunah and trust in Him and open the gates of our hearts so that all of the light being sent to us flows through as compassion into the world. And may we see a new light in the world very soon.