It is Rosh Chodesh Kislev and Parshas Toldos.
For the next month, it is all about hodu l’hallel, thanks and praises for Hashem.
We are taught that we are to thank Hashem for everything, what feels good to us as well as what does not. With what understanding do we thank Hashem for what does not? This is the question for people, who live in their emotions.
How do we bring Hashem into the picture in a meaningful way that makes even what does not feel good something for which we sincerely thank? How do we live in gan eden when tragedy and suffering strike?
It is not that we are not physically experiencing pain, suffering, fear and the like.
It is rather that our perspective, reason and purpose become part of the experience in a way that allows us to be present in the moment as part of Hashem.
Look up into the heavens and we see luminaries, the sun, the moon, the stars, comets, planets, cosmic dust, asteroids. Yet each one has its Source in Hashem.
Before Hashem creates the world, He creates one soul, Knesset Yisrael, the soul of Adom. Only one soul has ever been created. All souls that have ever been born come only from this one soul. It is a luminary and each one of us is an emanation from that luminary, just as a ray of sunlight emanates from the sun.
At no time is a ray of sunlight corrupted. Likewise, the emanation from the one soul whose Source is Hashem is absolutely pure. And at this very moment, at the higher levels of soul above the body, it is basking in awareness of the Divine Source from which it emanates without stopping. Our soul has pleasure, faith will and is at peace. That is our true state. So why are we feeling pain, fear, anger suffering and more?
Thank you! Hashem has given us life, including real free will. Thus, in order for us to have real free will, He brings that pure soul into this world in a body that conceals Hashem as well as the pleasure the soul is constantly experiencing. Angels, for example, enjoy the pleasure of being emanations from Hashem because it is not concealed from them.
Thus, when we experience pain, suffering and negativity, what we are experiencing is the pain of the Shechina – the life force He gives to us as a pure emanation – for which we are responsible to redeem from concealment.
The good news is that because we have consciousness, our role (to shift from self-consciousness where we are experiencing the loss and the anger to consciousness of Hashem and serving Him with joy as a creation) is totally within the powers of the soul Hashem gives us. With love for Hashem and awe in the design, we strengthen ourselves in emunah and pause showering compassion upon the Shechina in exile, our life force trapped in the sensations. We recognize that the force in what we are experiencing is the Shechina in exile. We have trust that the one soul He designs of which we are an emanation has built into it the pathway to draw the power of what we are experiencing back to the heavens through our will, prayer and love for Hashem. We nullify our self-consciousness including the messages stemming from the thought patterns that have propagated from self-consciousess realizing that we do not have any independent existence, that we are a helpless emanation, a creation only, and that Hashem is 100 percent in control. We have a physical presence that He sustains in order that we may bring into action that very Infinite light through mitzvahs.
The vision we all know of this is of Rabbi Akiva who was martyred and whose last word was Echad, may his memory be a blessing.
Rabbi Genuth teaches that a person’s understanding of the world grows only through contact with it and through thinking about it and then accepting the thought and incorporating it into the mind and heart as a reality. Good examples of these practically are learning how to drive. Good examples of this spiritually are the six constant mitzvahs.
What we naturally feel is often a consequence of what propagates from our childhood due to not knowing Torah, for how can an infant or a toddler or a small child comprehend? It is by design that our attachment to otherness occurs. It is impossible to not be attached to otherness. Thought patterns develop. Hashem creates the world intentionally in this way so that we have real free will.
Nevertheless, the existence of these attachments is meant only to provide us with a power (our own life force, the Shechina that agrees to go in exile as Elokim) trapped in what we have propagated through improper actions speech and thought to return in teshuva to Hashem through the channel that He designs, the spiritual realms, thereby freeing that life force to instead come into the world through our intention into learning Torah, avoda, chesed and mitzvahs.
Did you know that the body and mitzvahs are considered synonyms?
The body may feel one way – angry, frightened, frustrated, pained, and more – and it is experiencing such sensations, When we bring Hashem into the picture and we identify ourselves as an emanation of Knesset Yisrael in a body to release the power within that experience of the body into mitzvahs, the moment of doing so is transcendant, just like Rabbi Akiva shows us. Despite being burned at the stake, his experience was through connection to the pleasure that the soul is in constantly in devekus to Hashem knowing Shema Yisrael Hashem Elokeinu Hashem Echad. This is an example of Divine mercy, based on our nullifying our self-consciousness in favor of recognizing Hashem and emulating Him and doing His Will.
The Macabees were learning Torah to build themselves in ein od milvado consciousness. The story of Chanukah is long and full of suffering and desecration, of war and loss and tragedy. But when the one pure vial lasted for eight days, which was above nature, they knew they had regained the level of the kohein gadolim from the first temple, that they had reached the level of ein od milvado consciousness, that an open above nature miracle took place.
How can we apply this to us, at our level, within our days? We certainly can reach for switching a little bit more of the power trapped in the faulty thinking propagated from our attaching first to this world (lovingly and gently but with determination) to recognizing Hashem from emunah and bitachon When we trust that Hashem is doing everything and that He loves us and in the true reality that it is our soul that pure that is not in pain but rather the shechina put in exile because our life force became naturally attached to physicality, we can say thank you and praise Hashem for the opportunity. Instead of judging others. Instead of hating in our hearts, Instead of clinging to falsehoods and things that separate us.
Hold the force in the painful message in the mind – not the message – the force in the message. We can “sniff out” this force, separate from the message. See how the force is not the message. Hold true to the force being no other Power, that it is Shechina in exile, a portion of the beautiful life force we are blessed with that is providing us with life and bounty and talent, and realize it is for us to shower compassion upon it. The messages will try to assert themselves. It will feel like us! REMEMBER – we are emanations of the one soul, in pure bliss with Hashem, and this spark in these fiery messages contain powerful force, the Shecina in exile that is the life force we placed there naturally, that we are attempting to upload back to the heavens so as to infuse into the world as mitzvahs.
Showering compassion – which is possible because Hashem is compassionate and gives us this ability to emulate Him – upon the force opens the “kelipa” the shell the force is trapped in. HOLD STEADY. Just as a car with its windows closed can get blown by high winds out of its lane, so too our soul that is sealed in the shell of the message tosses us between lack and anger, taiva and gaiva. It is a battle for our hearts, for our identity. Shall we identify with our unrectified emotions fired up because of imbalances in our middos, the vessels of sefira that compose our soul? Or shall we identify as being a creation with emunah and bitachon in Hashem is doing everything and we are here to bring Infinite Light into the world? Showering compassion upon the concealed compassion animating that message is like opening the windows in a car being blown by the wind. All of a sudden there is an exchange of air, the wind passes through, the car can be steadied.
Opening the window of the car.
Showering compassion on the force in our pain.
Calm. Restoration of inner peace.
We recognize there is No Other Power. Hashem’s surrounding light, the compassion with which He sustains every atom, has Infinite light that is able to flow upwards from the trap of where we have propagated messages in our subconscious and aveiras in our actions – hating others in our hearts, not giving the benefit of the doubt, failing to do acts of Ahavas Yisrael and numerous more.
We are responsible for these messages. We confess. We do not want to continue propagating these.
It is Divine mercy that flows the force within these back to the heavens.
And it is our will and intention through which His Mercy permits these forces to then flow into mitzvahs that we move to do.
The more Torah we know about this topic, the more strands are with us in the moment to empower us to cling to the truth, that our soul is not in pain, only the Shechina in exile the life force He blesses us with that became attached and trapped in physicality due natural errors in development so that we may exercise real free will.
Shall we listen to the inner Esav or the inner Yaakov? Let us ask for Divine Mercy that we should merit to live in this world as Knesset Yisroel, a receiving body for the constant flow of Divine Mercy, intending to infuse it into the world.
May we be inspired to see the true reality of ourselves as constantly beloved by Hashem Who blesses us and asks when we are in pain that we fulfill the purpose and reason for the moment, which brings the world to its ultimate destination as a revealed world. For Infinite Light to affect the world, and there still be a world, this is the design. May we appreciate life, the opportunity of life and embrace and receive every moment with hodu l’hallel and a sense of oneness and inner peace and protection no matter what is flying.