Saturday, December 21, 2013

Nega-tivity to Oneg-tivity.

By Joe Indomenico.
I found great solace in pondering that Geulah - Redemption has already is just that we have not arrived there in time and space.........but occurred, it certainly has.  
What do you see ..... The destruction and ruins of temples, the ashes of crematoria, the dust of wilderness or do you see the vibrant light of the rebuilt Beit haMikdash, and the industrious labour of love of G-d fearing Yehudim reclaiming the ancient sites and barren sands? We must see with clarity. The blind negativity of the left eye must be transformed by the light of the right eye. And it has.........just open the eyes. 
Jewish Mysticism teaches that different Hebrew words that contain the same letters, but in a different order, are intrinsically related to each other.
Rabbi Yehonatan Eyebeschutz zt”l, in his famous work Yaarot Devash, explains that Lashon HaKodesh (lit. the “Holy Tongue” or Biblical Hebrew) reflects a basic aspect of life: Just as the situation of an individual or society can change from good to bad, so too the meanings of the Hebrew letters and words can change from positive to negative ones (through changes in the letter sequence).
In Vayikra - Leviticus 13 v 1-46, the Torah discusses the laws of a person whose skin is afflicted with נגע - nega, a Hebrew word meaning “plague” or “affliction”. The same letters, in different order, spell ענג - oneg, which means “pleasure” or “delight” – the very opposite of nega.
Chassidut  explains that the only difference between the words oneg and nega is the placement of the Hebrew letter ע- ayin (which literally means “eye” - how one views the world). Whether a person will experience oneg and pleasure in life or only nega and “plagues” all depends on his perspective – where one chooses to place one's ayin - does one want to see all the good that there is or just focus on what one sees that is bad ?
How do we learn from the spiritual afflictions of tzara’at and nega as written in the Torah?.
These afflictions appeared on the skin of a person. In Hebrew, the word “skin,” ohr, is written with an ayin עור. If the ayin is substituted by an aleph, the rendered word is  אור “light.” These two words are pronounced almost identically. In other words, the “skin” of the world, the way the world looks from the outside, is that it seems as though things just run by themselves devoid of an Unseen Hand. The “skin” of the world obstructs the Light. Nature is like a skin that obstructs the perception that everything in the world is miraculous, that everything is a manifestation of the Light.
If you take the spiritual affliction that manifests itself in the skin that is called nega and re-arrange the letters, you can form the word oneg, meaning, “pleasure.” By rearranging our view of the world, we can turn nega into the oneg of experiencing the Light. Similarly, if you rearrange the letters of tzara’at, you can form the word Atzeret, another name for Yom Tov, the holy festivals of the Jewish People, which afford yet another unique glimpse of the Light.
Every week, we are afforded an opportunity to make the “skin of the world” transparent, to see beyond to that Light. This opportunity is called Shabbat. G-d called Shabbat “pleasure.” 
יא  וְנָחֲךָ יְהוָה, תָּמִיד, וְהִשְׂבִּיעַ בְּצַחְצָחוֹת נַפְשֶׁךָ, וְעַצְמֹתֶיךָ יַחֲלִיץ; וְהָיִיתָ, כְּגַן רָוֶה, וּכְמוֹצָא מַיִם, אֲשֶׁר לֹא-יְכַזְּבוּ מֵימָיו.11 And the LORD will guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make strong thy bones; and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not.
יב  וּבָנוּ מִמְּךָ חָרְבוֹת עוֹלָם, מוֹסְדֵי דוֹר-וָדוֹר תְּקוֹמֵם; וְקֹרָא לְךָ גֹּדֵר פֶּרֶץ, מְשֹׁבֵב נְתִיבוֹת לָשָׁבֶת.12 And they that shall be of thee shall build the old waste places, thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called the repairer of the breach, the restorer of paths to dwell in.
יג  אִם-תָּשִׁיב מִשַּׁבָּת רַגְלֶךָ, עֲשׂוֹת חֲפָצֶךָ בְּיוֹם קָדְשִׁי; וְקָרָאתָ לַשַּׁבָּת עֹנֶג, לִקְדוֹשׁ יְהוָה מְכֻבָּד, וְכִבַּדְתּוֹ מֵעֲשׂוֹת דְּרָכֶיךָ, מִמְּצוֹא חֶפְצְךָ וְדַבֵּר דָּבָר.13 If thou turn away thy foot because of the sabbath, from pursuing thy business on My holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, and the holy of the LORD honourable; and shalt honour it, not doing thy wonted ways, nor pursuing thy business, nor speaking thereof;
יד  אָז, תִּתְעַנַּג עַל-יְהוָה, וְהִרְכַּבְתִּיךָ, עַל-במותי (בָּמֳתֵי) אָרֶץ; וְהַאֲכַלְתִּיךָ, נַחֲלַת יַעֲקֹב אָבִיךָ--כִּי פִּי יְהוָה, דִּבֵּר.  {פ}14 Then shalt thou delight thyself in the LORD, and I will make thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and I will feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father; for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it. Isaiah 58 v 11-14 
The real pleasure of Shabbat is the opportunity to re-orient our world-view,
to see the Light. The Light of Shabbat is the Messianic Age with the rebuilt Temple in Yerushalayim enveloped in the glory cloud of Shechinah drawing down the well springs of the Etz Chaim - The Tree of Life  and Ohr haGanuz- the hidden Light of creation.

Do you see it ?.....................just open your עיניים eyes.


Denise Raterta said...

activating the good eye! B"H!

M Caban said...


dodi55 said...

Whoa Joe!! I am so full I cannot express what is happening! But I'll try. It is definitely Hashgacha Pratit, Mazal. I was just watching a "Big History" documentary about water. It spoke of the water being like a "skin" and the awesome properties of water and that life depends on it. Buzz words and clues in what you said. B"H!! AND....
I just started reading the Mishkney Elyon from the RaMCHaL on the Mikdash HaShlishi. So awesome! Yes, our perspective and focus and keeness of vision are crucial. I want to also say it was very enlightening speaking with you with Rabbi Katz (last week?). I also think you are not far from my friend Rachelle Hamilton-Cohen that currently leads a "messianic" congregation in Melbourne. Yes? Thank you for this d'var torah. Kol tuv. Dvora Fairfield

Joe said...

Likewise it was a pleasure meeting you.
Hashgachah Pratit / Mazal are Geulah's catch cry.
Melbourne is 2000kms / 1600 miles away. 2 hours flight south from the Gold Coast.
I have nothing to do with Christian and Messianic groups.........Avodah Zara 101.

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