Posts Tagged ‘Zachor’

17
Mar

Haftarah Zachor: Background IV

by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Holidays, Portion of the Week

Purim is the holiday of the oral law. The oral law means we do only what’s told or do we also use judgment and creativity? Judgment and creativity. So we understand that if you’re dealing here with oral law issues then there’s judgment and creativity. So you understand this is not just a basic story.

Some historical background is as follows, Shmuel, the prophet Samuel and Shaul are intertwined. There two pats of one person. Because when Channah the mother of Samuel prayed for a son she was given a son, and remember he was a result of prayer which is also important to keep in mind. She said, what happened, I asked of him from God. what is the Hebrew word for ask, Shaul or shaal. So what should have Shmuel’s name  been? Shaul, but he’s not Shaul for some reason he is Shmuel. So Shaul is a different manifestation of Shmuel.

He is part of one thing, the two are intertwined. And the reason kabbalistically is that Shmuel comes from the Tribe of Levi. The Tribe of Levi represents din. It represents judgment and harshness, things have to be a certain way. That’s why when Moshe needs to turn to a tribe who’s going to be able to destroy the Jews who were involved in the sin of the gold calf, he turns to levi. Because they understand. Even if it was their own brother or their own father, that man who was involved in the worshipping of the golden calf they would kill them because this is what needs to be done.

Shaul, Binyamin comes from whatever reason from chessed, from kindness. So there is an empowerment when Shmuel anoints Shaul, there is now a mixing of din and chessed and it is symbolized when Shmuel takes oil and pours it on the head of Shaul to anoint him as king. Oil always represents wisdom, even in the secular world. Because it’s the light, thinking and bring light to the world. Ford has a better idea and in the 60’s the light bulb would go on in the commercials, things like that. Sow hat you have are myriads of issues between Shmuel and Shaul and the fact that he anointed him as king. One last historical piece of information, is that Shaul never sinned before he became king. He was as pure as a baby the verse says. If you had taken a one year old baby and you compare all the evil he had done (which is nothing) and compare it to Shaul there would be no difference the verse says that. Not only that he was so humble, and private, he was exquisitely good. For example when he first meets Shmuel he is going to look for some oxen. Until that point no one was called a navi because prophecy had been withheld from the Jewish people. They were called roee– seers.  When Shaul Saul goes to Shmuel to ay he is missing his oxen, all of a sudden you find the word navi appearing again. So much so that you find in the story of Shaul many time that people say oh Shaul drops into a pile of prophets and he become a prophet himself. It happens numerous times. So Samuel tells him listen, you’re the next king, he says okay okay that’s fine. And when he returns home to his uncle he asks did you see the prophet and he says yes. And when he asks what he said, he responds well that he found the lost donkey, and said oh did he say anything else? What would you say oh that he said id be the next king right? Shaul said no he didn’t say anything important. The Shmuel gather all the people and says : ladies and gentlemen you have asked me for a new king, gather together let me introduce you to the new king, drum rolls and trumpets, the curtain opens up and he’s hiding. They have to go out and look for him and they find him hiding behind some ??? he doesn’t like the public eye. People say that is our king? He’s tall but that makes him king? Shaul goes to fight this massive battle now they say yea thats our king. The people who were followers of Shaul from the beginning said they should wipe out these people who didn’t follow you at first. But Saul says no, its okay its not important. So you have a picture of what kind of man he is.

Next point is that Samuel summons Saul the king and says listen I want you to battle the philistines but don’t go into the battle before offering a sacrifice. Make sense? Yes. And don’t give the sacrifice until I am there, don’t do it. Okay, all right, you don’t have to pressure me.

So the Philistines are approaching and the Jews turn to Saul and say you better offer a sacrifice we’re about to go into battle. Well, I can’t really yet I have to wait for the navi. So fine, the people start disappearing and finally he realizes the philistines are a few feet away , yard, a football field away, Shmuel is not there yet, the people are deserting him, he’s not going to have any soldiers to fight. So he’s desperate what should he do what should he do?

So he gives the sacrifice because he wants God’s help in the battle. He turns around after giving the sacrifice, there’s someone tapping his shoulder and its Samuel. He says Hi Shaul !didn’t I tell you to wait? Yes but, what could I do the people are running away. He couldn’t do it. He couldn’t handle the situation.

Author Info:
Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone™ is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.

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16
Mar

Reading the Text: Haftarah Zachor II

by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Holidays, Portion of the Week

Transcribed and prepared by Anna Beller: You need to picture the story, that it’s not just the battle but you must keep in mind the struggle that’s going on inside Shaul. You must keep this in mind or you won’t understand the story.  Again: It’s not a battle of black and white.

And Shaul says to the descendants of Jethro (the father in law of Moshe), Go away from living near the Amalek.

They were Bedouins, going from place to place. Who were the first Bedouins? The descendants of Kayin. It says in the verse that the descendants of Kayin where the first Bedouins. In the pasuk it says that Kayin’s grandson, Yavol was the father of all those “who live in tents and travel with their animals” – Bedouins.

That why Kayin and Yitsro have the same name and that why the descendants of Jethro are called Kayni – Kayin.

They are so interconnected that the zohar says that soul of  Kayin reappeared in Yitro.  The ultimate outsider, Kayin can never settle anywhere and so is Yitro, he becomes a priest in every religion and then he leaves. “Now I know that God is the true God,” converts, and then he leaves; he’s the ultimate outsider.

Shaul tells Yitro’s descendants to go away, which by the way, not only informs Amalek of the impending attack, but probably allowed some of them to escape as Keinites!. Why is it only after the fight stopped it says, Shaul goes the city of Amalek,” again the battle, and then he said to the keini, “Leave!” It says that the keini leave and Shaul fights the battle. What happening is that he’s already having mixed feeling, “what am I doing, about to destroy a nation , makes moral decisions and now, fully aware of everything  that’s going on in this battle, so that when he sees the innocent bystanders he gets them out of harm’s way , and this is a positive thing, as these are people who are connected to the Jewish people.

This is something that manifests itself after he goes through this internal struggle.

“I don’t want you to be killed with Amalek, and you did a kindness when the Jews were coming from Egypt. What was the kindness Yitro did? He fed Moshe after Moshe saved his daughters and let him stay in his house. So obviously feeding Moshe was a kindness to all the Jewish people.

Say leave because there’s no reason for you to be killed, and because you have a connection to the Jewish people. But leave because your grandfather once did a favor for Moshe and doing a favor for Moshe is like doing a favor for all the Jewish people and therefore I don’t want to kill you- why go through all this Talmudic reasoning? Say I don’t want to kill you, I don’t have a commandment to kill you, leave.

And what’s interesting is that it has to do with a meal which is connected to the meal of Purim. Both the meal of Esther’s party and the one we need to have on Purim. But it’s not the time for that its just some food for thought.

Another opinion: In the commentaries about what was the favor that Yitro did for the Jewish people. Well, it was his idea to establish the system of the judges- 50, 100, 100. So because you did us that favor we don’t want to kill you.

What’s interesting is that that favor that Yitro did was not a black and white good favor, there was a down side to it too. Because they no longer dealt directly with Moshe and in fact the portion of Devarim . Moshe criticizes them, are you crazy? You had a chance to deal with a judge or dealing with me you; should deal with me. Doesn’t make sense.

And then after they decide to not go directly with Moshe what happened at the end of the portion of Yitro, after hearing God’s voice, we don’t want to deal with You directly! Yitro, the outsider, the man of distance, introduced the idea of distance; distance from Moshe, distance from God. It’s not so black and white that Yitro did them a favor.

So all the boundaries are going to begin to be listed over and everything will be in gray form this point on because there’s a lot going on here and that is, by the way, the power of Amalek.

Author Info:
Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone™ is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.

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16
Mar

Haftarah Zachor: Background III

by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Holidays, Portion of the Week

Transcribed and prepared by Anna Beller: Now there is another human being, we learn from midrash hayom, who looks exactly like Adam, who was that? Yaakov, Jacob looks exactly the way Adam did. So its interesting that what does the snake has to do? He has to attack Yaakov, right? Now the snake saw that there was another time when the Jews were almost able to destroy the yetzer harah– the evil inclination / Satan. When was that?

When they received the Torah at Sinai. So Satan was desperate. And therefore he had to find a way to insinuate himself into this situation so that he could prevent his destruction.  And the way he did it midrashikly– is that he showed a funeral bier with Moshe’s body, so the Jews were convinced that Moshe had died and the Jews had to turn to the golden calf, he won.

Now this is the third time you have a situation, because is Shaul wipes out Amalek that’s it it’s the end, there’s no more yetzer harah, Satan would be destroyed. And therefore, he has to insinuate himself into this battle because this battle is not just a war with another nation but this is a war against the whole essence of evil.  Shaul we will see, understands this very clearly, its not just a question of destroying Amalek, its also about destroying evil, and the evil inclination. And Shaul has to make calls on this in his own mind.

Author Info:
Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone™ is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.

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16
Mar

Haftarah Zachor: Background II

by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Holidays, Portion of the Week

Transcribed and prepared by Anna Beller: The next point, before you can wipe out an entire nation, remember that every nation has their own angel. And as long as the angel is still alive, not in the same way as is a human being, but as long as the angel is still alive, you won’t be able to wipe out every descendant of that tribe. Therefore there has to be a battle against the angel at the same time that there is a battle against its children, the two are intertwined.

Although there is an angel over the Jewish people, god deals directly why the Jewish people, there is an angel Michael, who always going out of his way to protect the Jewish people, but the fact is, that god deals with us directly not only through an angel. Therefore the angel of Amalek understands that Amalek is going to be totally wiped out by king Saul in this Haftarah. Not only will it mean the death of Amalek, but the death of the angel. But who is the angel of Amalek? Satan.

Now Satan has been faced with this kind of desperate situation other times. For example in the Garden of Eden. He understood that unless he took care of Adam then he would be destroyed. Because if Adam made the proper choice that would be the end of Satan, it would be the end of yetzar hara– the end of evil inclination.

Therefore he had to introduce himself, and that is called nachash– that is the snake that came to attack. What’s interesting is that in the midrash and kabalistic literature Amalek is always symbolized by a snake.

Author Info:
Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone™ is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.

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16
Mar

Reading the Text: Haftarah Zachor I

by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Holidays, Portion of the Week

Transcribed and prepared by Anna Beller:

Rachamim & Chemlah:

“And Samuel said to Saul, it was I whom God sent to anoint you as a king over His nation, over Israel.  And now listen to the word of the voice of hashem. So says God the lord of all hosts,  I remember very well what Amalek did to Israel. They attacked Israel on the way, that Israel was going up from Israel, now go and kill Amalek.  and destroy all that is. Do not have any mercy on him.

Now tachmol- mercy, we have another word for compassion which is rachamim. The Malbim explains that the difference between rachamim, what we commonly know as compassion and chemlah– which I’m translating now as mercy, is that rachamim is having compassion for something which is important to you, while tachmol is that the object or the one your having mercy on is not necessarily important, its just that your having mercy because you want to have mercy. So God has compassion for the Jewish people because they are important to God. chemlah is not, it’s by virtue of being merciful I am going to do this for you. Which plays an important role in the modeh ani; b-chemla, rabba emunatecha.

Don’t have any mercy,  you should kill from man onto woman,  from the young children to the nursing children. from oxen to sheep, form the camel until the donkey- WIPE THEM OUT.

Counting With Sheep

And Shaul summoned the nation, and he took his sheep and counted the Jews by his sheep, so each Jew would take a sheep and they counted all the sheep that were there. And it turned out 200,000 foot soldiers. So how many sheep do we know Shaul had? 200,00.  and 10,000 men from Yehudah. So you have a total of 210,00 people which means Shaul had a total of 210,000 sheep. This becomes important later on in the story when the people want to save some of the Amalekite animals for sacrifices; a strange thing if they have 210,000 sheep with them!

Purim & Pesach

There is another reading of this verse, which is in the Targum Yonatan who says that this happened on Pesach, and what he did was whoever brought a pascal offering he counted the number of pascal offerings, so since the head of each house brought pascal offering he counted the pascal offerings. 200,000 of the Jews and 10,000 of Yehudah. What’s interesting is that if he’s correct that this happened on Pesach, when does the story with Haman and Esther happen? On Pesach. When Esther asked that everyone fast for her it was the first three days of Pesach, and Hamman is killed 2 days later. On the end of the third day Esther goes into Achashverosh to seduce him and then invite him to apart, the next day she has a party and then she asks Achashveirosh and Haman to go to the next party the next day, your still in Pesach so Haman is killed on Pesach. Which is interesting, maybe there’s a connection between Pesach and Purim.

The Battle “At the River”:

The Angel of Eisav

So Shaul came to the city of Amalek,  and he battled at the river. The river? Where else does the verse mention it a “river”? Yaakov. When the angel fought with Yaakov at the nachal. So the battle with Amalek by the river is the first indication, says the Alshich, that this battle is not simply a battle with Amalek but it goes to the very root of the Jewish people. Just as the angel of Eisav battled with Yaakov at the river, so does Shaul battle Amalek at the river. It’s going to the heart of the Jewish people.

An Internal Battle

How does the Gomorrah read  the battle at the river? There is one law in the Torah that must be performed at the river which is, if you find man killed in middle of two cities, you measure to which city the corpse is closest. You assume that man was traveling outside of that city, and therefore the sages of that city need to take a calf to that river and offer an Eglah Arufa.  They say, “We did not kill this man! However, as we should have escorted the man of the city so he wouldn’t have been killed, there’s certainly an element of responsibility.”

The Talmud says what does it mean here that they battled at the river? That Shaul was battling inside himself. He said,  God says that if you find one man murdered in the middle of nowhere you have to go with this whole process of determining which city he’s closest to. That even if he’s 5 yards outside one city and a mile from an other city you need to go through the process of measuring for whatever reason. Then the sages have to go through the whole process for what reason? It means that God is concerned with every human being. And now God is telling you to wipe out a whole nation, men women children nursing babies, God is telling me to wipe them out, what should I do?

He’s horrified. Most people who here when there’s a mitzvah to wipe out Amalek its horrible, what’s the difference between us and the Nazis.

So a Heavenly Voice comes out, says the Talmud, and spoke to Shaul and says, “You mind your business and I’ll mind Mine! You do what your told!”

But you can already see that Shaul is fighting a battle within himself. Now you can’t imagine that until this point Shaul didn’t know that there was such a mitzvah to wipe out Amalek, he did and  you can’t say that he didn’t know it now because he was already commanded by Shmuel. He had already counted the soldiers, and counting the 200000 men of Israel and the 10000 of Yehudah. So he’s had time to think about it but when it comes down to the battle of Amalek, he’s horrified.

So it’s something that must have been inside of him but he never had to deal with it because it wasn’t real to him. He is  first coming face to face with this law in a tangible way in the middle of the battle and he  is struggling within himself saying how can I do this?  So then the Heavenly Voice comes down and says You do what I’m telling you to do and I’ll take responsibility for what it is I’m telling you, but do it!

Which Part of Shaul is Struggling?

So he’s fighting evil within himself which is an indication of what? What part of him is fighting, who is attempting to insinuate himself into this whole story?

On the one hand you can say its coming from his yetzer harah, obviously.

But the truth is if you heard someone making such an argument you would think this isn’t an argument of the yetzer harah, of the evil inclination, he’s struggling. And we’ve talked about this before.

What is it within a human being that struggles with observance and with God. the soul or the mind? The soul. The soul is driving you and the mind has the answers. That’s why in Rabbi Moshe Chaim Luzzatto’s masterpiece, “The Knowing Heart,” it is the mind that has all the answers and the soul who has the questions.

Because you must understand the soul is driving you to know. Intellectually read the book and you’ll get all the answers. Any issue you want to deal with, you’ll find the answers; it’s your soul that’s driving you to look and its not your yetzer harah, it’s your soul, it wants to be connected to truth and be present to whatever its doing.

So it’s not so black and white that what is pushing Shaul here is his yetzer harah and possibly also his yetzer hatov– the lines are not clear.

The fact that the lines are not clear is the insinuation that it’s the work of Satan. Because he’s not telling you to do something wrong. He wants to convince you that things are not black and white. Which is what he did in the Garden of Eden. He didn’t say sin against God, he says, this is better for you, I love you, I want you to do what is better for you. Would I lie to you? Look in my eyes. Would I lie to you? The Gemara says the snake was not a liar, you will be more powerful, he just made things a little less clear.

Author Info:
Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone™ is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.

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15
Mar

Kol Tzofaich: Zachor: Shared Roots

by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Holidays, Portion of the Week

“The word of God came to Samuel, saying, “I have regretted that I made Saul king, for he has turned away from Me and has not fulfilled My word!” It aggrieved Samuel and he cried out to God the entire night.” “Samuel went to Ramah; and Saul went up to his home at Gibeah of Saul.”

“Samuel never again saw Saul until the day of his death, for Samuel mourned over Saul, but God had reconsidered His making Saul king over Israel.”

“God said to Samuel, “How long will you mourn over Saul, when I have rejected him from reigning over Israel?”

We must understand why did Samuel suffers so much over Saul? Why did he storm and rattle all the worlds over Saul’s removal as King? Why was he so devastated that he was as a mourner, impossible to comfort until the day of his death? So much so, that Samuel never again went to meet Saul until the day of his death.

Samuel was in such a devastating state of mourning that God had to push him and say, “How long will you more? It’s enough! Even after God said, “I have regretted that I made Saul King,” Samuel continues to mourn. Why does he act like this?

It is clear that we have before us an important and hidden secret; from the secrets of the Roots, from the inner rooms of the souls that are ours, and those close to us, the ones that play an important role in our lives:

I have seen in the Shevet Mussar (Chapter 11), “there are some common people who have great love for Torah scholars, who run to fulfill God’s mitzvot, and who seek to hear words of wisdom. Know that all of their good deeds are drawn from the highest roots of their souls; the place their soul holds in the Olam ha-Nishamot, the Sold World, connected to the “Ilan,” the Tree of Life, the Tree of Souls, where they are the neighbors of the souls of the Torah scholars. This is why they feel this loving connection to the scholars.

We know that there are some friendships that are more intense than one would have for a sibling; the reason is that it is possible for two brothers to be distant on this tree, even while the friend is connected on the tree to another. It is our Soul Connection on the Tree, that nourishes the connection that we have to others.

This is why you will also see that there are some people who connect to one specific Torah scholar and to no other. Again, this is because of their connection on the Tree in the Soul World.

This is similar to a concept taught by the Ohr ha-Chaim ha-Kadosh on the verse, “He said to them, so said God, the Lord of Israel, every man, put his sword on his thigh and pass back-and-forth from gate to gate in the camp. Let every man kill his brother, every man his fellow, and every man his near one (Exodus 32:27).” Why did the verse need to say “every man his brother,” if it already says, “every man his fellow”?

This is because there are some brothers who despite their relationship are distant from each other in ideas and values. There are other people who are not related at all, and yet share a deep love because they share the same ideas and values; this draws from the root of their souls in the Soul World.

There are souls that share a common root but are born distant, and there are souls that are distant in their roots and yet are born close to each other, as brothers.

The closeness and relationship that existed between Samuel and Saul was this closeness of souls, sharing a common root, a love more powerful than this world as it was connected and rooted in the highest worlds.

Rabbi Yochanan said in the name of Rabbi Simeon: The Holy One, Blessed is He, brings into the world numbers of associations and numbers of brotherhoods. If one of the Association die, let the whole Association become apprehensive, since Rabbi Samuel bar Abba said in the name of Rabbi Yochanan: There are predetermined periods of power, and one does not overlap that of the other even to the breadth of a here (Ruth Rabbah 2:8).

This midrash describes souls that share the same root but were separated from each other when they came to this world. It was not coincidental that God joined them together in one group or in one place, for in the Soul World these souls were united as one.

The Ramban says (The Book of Belief and Trust), all the souls of Israel are rooted in a single soul, and when we love each other, it is an expression of this “oldest” love.

It is for this reason that if one of a group dies that the entire group shall worry because they all share a common root.

The closeness and relationship that existed between Samuel and Saul, rooted as it was in the Soul World, was the relationship of two souls carved from one piece.

The Gra teaches that all of the prophets, especially Samuel, knew the root of each person’s soul, and therefore when one came to the Prophet, he would be given direct should for the very essence of his soul.

Samuel, the expert in the roots of souls, surely knew the root of Saul’s soul, its place, and its closeness to Samuel. He knew Saul’s purpose of existence in this world, and that they were partners not only in this world but in the Upper World. He knew that Saul was an expression of his own root.

Therefore, when Saul failed as King, and only as King, Samuel was devastated. He lost part of himself. He mourned and was inconsolable.

Author Info:
Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone™ is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.

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15
Mar

Haftarah Zachor: Background I

by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Holidays, Portion of the Week

Transcribed and prepared by Anna Beller:

Just when the Jews had crossed the Red Sea with all the great miracles they had the mannah and the bitter waters Amalek attacks them. The passuk says they attacked them at Rephidim. And Rephidim is a name of the place. However we say that Rephidim is Divrei Torah. They pulled their hands back in the study of Torah. As punishment  during a time when amazing things are happening to them they lost a level of awareness. And because they lost a level of awareness, Amalek had the opportunity to attack them.

What Amalek did was, there were stragglers, people who just hung around and weren’t an actual part of the crowd. They were traveling inside the clouds. So Amalek caught them and those who weren’t circumcised Amalek removed that part of their body and threw it up to heaven and said, “Here God, You seem to love this part of the body because You tell all the Jewish males to circumcise themselves.”

So then Moshe says we have to fight them back and he commands the second in command Yehoshua. And it says about Yehoshua, Joshua that he never left the tent. He was always learning Torah morning and night always learning Torah. So obviously if Amalek is able to attack because the Jews are weak in their study of Torah it makes sense that the one to bring them into battle is Joshua.

Moshe goes up to the heavens, and it’s a famous story that he put his hand up to the heavens, and whenever the Jews looked up because Moshe’s hands were up they thought of God and were able to fight Amalek. But when his hands went down so they were unable to fight Amalek. Eventually Moshe tired, and the fact that Moshe tired is an indication that something was wrong, because if this what god had wanted then Moshe would not have tired. So they brought a rock and, the one they brought was the even hashtiya, the rock from which the whole world was created, which is usually in the holy of holies in the temple in Jerusalem, from which the world drank its existence. So Moshe sat on this rock and Aaron and Chur held his hands up. However God was displeased with Moshe and said that Yehoshua is going to be the one to lead the Jews into Israel because you should have gone to fight the battle yourself instead of sending Yehoshua.

The Torah mentions the battle with Amalek a second time and it’s at the end of the parsha Ki Teitzei which is in the fifth book of the Torah, Devarim. And there it says there were certain characteristics of Amalek.: number one: lo yareih elokim– they had no awe of God. Number 2 it says in the pasuk:  asher karcha ba derech- they met you on the way.

So Rashi gives three explanations of asher karach bah:

So Rashi takes the word Karachakuf, reish, chuf. And says that the shoresh is kuf, reish. Kar. So he gives three explanations:

1) That they met you by chance, the happened to meet you or at least they let you to believe that.

2) kar = cold. Because the midrash gives an analogy of a boiling hot bath tub. And everyone dipped their toes in and couldn’t go in because it was too hot. And then this big fat guy looks at the water and he jumps in and he scolded all over but meanwhile the water cooled off. So the Jews are hot, no none will touch them. They’ve heard about the 10 plagues, splitting of the red sea, they heard about bitter waters turning sweet, they heard about the manah and the birds flying in- so they were not going to touch those guys. And Amalek says well jump in and touch them. So before everyone thought the Jews were invincible and were unwilling to touch them. So the fact that Amalek were about to jump in and touch them and had no hesitation at all that they were willing to go right in and attack them it cooled things off, the Jews no longer had an aura of invincibility.

3) The word kar, is the same things as kery– a man’s semen. Because if you look at a man’s semen, he produces hundreds of million of cells and women only produce one usually. So the man represents chance and the woman represent that which is predetermined. So Amalek was introducing the element of chance into the world.

Another thing to keep in mind when reading the story is as follows: Before Yaakov met Eisav, if you recall, he struggled with an angel at night. That angel was called saro de Eisav– the angel of Eisav. And he battled with Yaakov, at a nachal– a river. And that’s where he battled him and that considered the great battle between Yaakov and the world, the Jews and the world. And where the angel was able to cause some damage to Yaakov in his sciatic nerve going down to the two legs. Purim is one of the leg holidays. Every part of the body represents a part of the body. Chanukah is the left leg and Purim is the right leg, Chanukah is Aharon, fought by cohanim. Left leg is hod. And the right leg is Moshe and that’s why the two legs, what was it that Mordechai wouldn’t do? He wouldn’t go down on his legs. Because where is it that Eisav, represented by Amalek, because he’s considered the most destructive of the descendants of Eisav. So where was it that Eisav was able to strike at the Jewish people? Where the two legs go down the nerve that goes down the two legs. And therefore Mordechai would not bow down because he didn’t want them to have any power. Yaakov however, even after battling the angel of Eisav, who is by the way Satan, even after battling him, when he finally meets Eisav what does he do? He bows down. And not only does he bow down but all of Yaakovs living children bow down except for Deena who was hidden away in a box. But at the time Yaakov only had 11 sons, Benyamin was missing. And Benyamin means never bow down to Eisav. Therefore if there’s going to be one tribe that’s going to have power over Eisav, and is not as susceptible to Eisav as are the other tribes, that’s is going to be Benyamin. Therefore it makes most sense that it has to be a descendant of Benyamin who has to battle Amalek, which in fact we will read in the Haftorah is Shaul, Saul the first king of the Jews, who came from the tribe of Benjamin.

The Purim story is fought by Mordechai who is ish  yiiani– what goes ish ha yimani mean? Benyamin. So in the Purim story fought by Mordechai in Esther they are both descendants of Benyamin, and in fact descendants of Shaul. So we find that there’s a consistency that the two major battles fought with Amalek post Torah are fought by descendants of Benyamin. Therefore Shaul has the power that other people do not have, something else you need to keep in mind.

Author Info:
Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone™ is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.

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9
Mar

Zachor: The Missing Staff

by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Holidays, Portion of the Week

Moshe tells Yehoshua to go and choose men to battle Amalek, and I will go up the mountain and the staff of the Lord will be in my hand.

Moshe went up the mountain. In the famous story, he raised his hands up high, and when they were raised, the Jews won the battle, but when he would lower his hands, the Jews would begin to fall and lose. Moshe’s hands tired and Aharon and Chur had to hold Moshe’s hands high so that the Jews could continue to win. What happened to the staff? The text never mentions the staff in the story.

If the people had looked up and seen Moshe standing with the staff in his outstretched hands they would have been reminded of great miracles that God had performed for them through Moshe. The people would have looked up and expected a great miracle from God.

Moshe did not raise the staff. He raised his hands towards God. He was reaching out to Hashem. When the people looked up they too understood that they had to reach up toward God. They could not simply sit back and wait for a miracle. All was in their hands

Why did Moshe tell Yehoshua that the staff of the Lord would be in his hands? Because hands reaching up to Hashem, with the understanding that Hashem has empowered us to make miracles happen, have the staff of the Lord in their hands. This was the lesson of Purim, but it began with Moshe in the first battle against Amalek.

Author Info:
Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone™ is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.

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9
Mar

Zachor: Shabbat Prayers: Pesukei d’Zimrah: Vayivarech David

by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Holidays, Prayer

“And David blessed God in the presence of the entire congregation.” David represented everything to the Jewish people. Can you imagine his impact when the now unified, stronger, and confident people? If they understood this farewell speech that we are reading, in which he introduces the seven lower Sefirot, he must have elevated them to an unbelievable level. Yet, with all his greatness, he would have to die in order for the Beit Hamikdash to be built.

Can you imagine the mixed feelings of the people? They are filled with both devastating sadness over the end of their beloved Kings life, and expectations of the magnificent future.

This paragraph leads directly into the next, “And they blessed Your glorious Name that is exalted above every blessing and praise (Nehemiah 9:5).” This paragraph composed before building the second Beit Hamikdash, continues the theme of expectations. They too were filled with expectation mixed with sadness that this temple would not equal, could not equal, the first.

Nehemiah’s prayer is immediately followed by the song at the city. The song is a song of expectations! “God shall reign for all eternity!” Is a statement of their expectations of the future. The women’s song was accompanied by musical instruments they had prepared in Egypt because they left Egypt with expectations that tremendous miracles would occur.

The Zohar (Vayakhel) teaches that at this point of the conclusion of Pesukei d’Zimrah, we should be filled with expectation that our Shema and Shemonah Esrei will be the greatest of our lives.

The fact that we read Nehemiah’s prayer immediately after King David’s is to remind us that expectations exist on a continuum that stretch back to the song of the Sea and in fact back to the moment when we left Egypt:

Imagine if you saw everyone around you die, the world being turned upside down, even if you were not affected, and all that was protecting you with some blood on your door, would you feel vulnerable? Even though your enemies are being punished, even though you are safe, this new Master of yours, God, has the ability to reverse reality. At least when Pharoah was in charge, the trains ran on time. How many of us wait so long for everything to be just right only to constantly lose significant opportunities? We were forced to leave before everything was right. We did not have enough to eat. We were not prepared for a long journey. Sometimes you have to rush at an opportunity, the secret of the matzoh. Bitterness, Maror, can destroy us. Things not being right is livable. Bitterness is unbearable. The key to being able to rush at an opportunity despite not everything being prepared or ready is expectation.

We may not feel adequately prepared for the most awesome Shema or Shemonah Esrei of our lives. But the expectations will get us there. They will allow us to rush at the opportunity and to succeed.

Author Info:
Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone™ is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.

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9
Mar

Zachor: Looking Forward, Looking Back by William Zinsser

by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Holidays, Portion of the Week

As a boy I never kept watch for the first robin. My eye was out for the first newspaper articles from the small Florida towns where the major league baseball teams went for spring training. Bradenton! Lakeland! Clearwater! Vero Beach! “Come on down!” those places called to me, and I vowed that some day I would.

That day came in March 1982 when I was driving through central Florida and saw a sign to Winter Haven, the spring training camp of the Boston Red Sox. My rented car, like a good horse, knew the way, and soon I was settled in the grandstand with a hot dog and a beer. The sun was warm, the grass was green, and the air was alive with the sounds of rebirth: bat meeting ball, ball meeting glove, players and coaches chattering across the diamond. Winter Haven indeed! Winter Heaven was more like it.

I was sitting in a sea of codgers, codging the time away. A rookie left-hander was on the mound, warming up for an intra-squad game. I was enjoying his form, wondering if this was his year to make it to the majors. I told the man next to me that the kid reminded me of Warren Spahn. The man said he looked like Preacher Roe. His wife said he was a ringer for Harvey Haddix. An old codger mentioned Lefty Grove. A young codger mentioned Vida Blue. We were typical springtime fools, seeing what we wanted to see.

Many years later, recalling that moment in my book Spring Training, I wrote:

So the afternoon slipped by in contentment. The ancient rhythms of baseball were intact; we could have been watching a game in 1882, not 1982. No organist toyed with our emotions, no electronic scoreboard told us when to cheer. We were suspended in a pocket of time unlike any other moment in baseball’s long year. It was a time of renewal for the players and also for the fans. It was a time for looking both forward and back: forward to the new season and as far back as the oldest codger could recall. And what made it all work was memory. Memory was the glue that held baseball together as the continuing American epic.

A few years ago I used that passage in my memoir-writing class to suggest how to write about a place. Mere facts, I said, aren’t sufficient (“our house was on Spruce Street,” “the neighbors had a dog named Spot”). The task is to find the point of the place–its identifying idea. It may be waiting for you to find it. Or you may have to impose on the place some larger idea of your own. In the case of my afternoon in Winter Haven, the point of the place is memory. That’s what the passage is “about.”

One student, Thomas Ryan, was a firefighter who had been on duty in the World Trade Center on 9/11. “I don’t think the piece is about memory,” he said. “I think it’s about loss.”

That hit me like a boxer’s punch. I was so sure my piece was about memory, so pleased with my tidy organizing idea. But then I thought: Tom Ryan is the expert here, not me. A firefighter who was in one of those collapsing towers knows everything there is to know about loss. Thanks to Tom, I saw that memory is only a writer’s recall mechanism. I was in the loss business; my territory was the unrecoverable past.

I thought of all the stories that have been told in my class for 20 years. Some of the tellers are old Jewish men and women who survived the Nazi camps and are still haunted by the death and dispersal of their families. Some are men and women trying to recapture the lost landscape of their childhood–the much-loved small-town Main Street that’s now mostly strip malls. Some are middle-aged women whose life is still stalled on the day their father died when they were children.

Zinsser on Friday at http://www.theamericanscholar.org

Zachor is not only looking back to remember, but looking forward inspired by the memory.

Author Info:
Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone™ is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.

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