Rabbi Ashlag

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Why is it important to understand the language of Kabbalah? Many people learn about Kabbalah using terms such as light, Sephirot, the Tree of life, without  really knowing what they mean. But this is a shame, because when we learn the meaning of these words terms accurately we  obtain a precious key to the wisdom of our Sages, and to our own lives.

The light of God , the Creator, is one, One indivisible goodness. But we cannot grasp any aspect of it unless we want it.

Rabbi Ashlag the great Kabbalist gives this example:

Take a sefer Torah:  The light is the white of the parchment. It contains all the wisdom of the Torah,  But if it were not for the black letters, I would not know what this wisdom is saying to me.

Black is the absence of light. So the letters of the Torah, black ink on white parchment  are actually absences of the light… yet the letters catch the light within their spaces. In our own lives when we lack something we yearn for it. It is our desires that make up the letters, words and sentences of our lives.

Our question today is, are the sentences we are writing today, truly reflecting our deepest desires?

By learning the words of the Torah and of the Kabbalah , accurately  we can see our own desires, more clearly.

Today we look at the term zivug, which is the Kabbalistic term for the entry of light into the vessel and is also the term sued for the relationship between a man and wife.

On a personal note I wish to give thanks to HaShem that after a long period of illness I am able once again to write and broadcast these short shiurim, and to  my dear family and  chevrutas who all helped me with their encouragement and prayers. 

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the shofar, the Sephirah of Binah

Sounding our own Shofar

by yedidah on September 21, 2016

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Rabbi Ashlag in the Perush haSulam, his great commentary on the Zohar, teaches:

During the 12 months of the year we work on the tikkun of the Malchut. That is, we work on letting go of receiving for ourselves alone, and practice giving unconditionally, doing acts that are in affinity of form with the Creator. In this way we rectify the Malchut—the Shechinah, our collective soul—from the beginning of the year till the end of the year. However, since this tikkun is not yet complete, each year at Rosh haShanah we start the cycle again to rectify the Malchut, until the complete redemption.

This is the reason that each year on Rosh haShanah the world returns to its original state when the great light of Creation, the Or d’Chochmah, came into the world. But if we  were to receive this great light now directly it would cause us harm. Thus the Holy Blessed One gave us the mitzvah of blowing the shofar on Rosh haShanah. The shofar is the voice of Binah, the Sephirah of compassion and loving-kindness.

The presence of this great light allows us to see our thoughts, words, and actions of the previous year more clearly. Often we feel sorry and wish some action or word undone or unsaid. But how can we change reality?

Rabbi Moshe Chaim Luzzatto, in his great work, Mesillat Yesharim, (The path of the righteous) writes:

“Repentance is given to people with absolute loving-kindness so that the rooting out of the will which prompted the deed is considered a rooting out of the deed itself.”

This loving-kindness manifests in the sound of the shofar. The voice of the shofar opens the opportunity to make good , to undo , to come back fresh…. and to a new start.

May we all be blessed to hear the sound of the shofar this year, and merit to sound our own inner shofar both at Rosh haShanah and throughout the whole year.

This Torah podcast is dedicated l’ilui nishmat  Chana Annette bat Mazal and Moshe 

This talk is based on excerpts from Rabbi Ashlag’s Perush haSulam on Zohar Vayerah 381 and  Zohar TeZaveh 88-92

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Further talks on Elul, Teshuvah and Rosh hashanah

Forty days of love: From Elul to Yom Kippur

Enjoying the month of Elul

Shame is a precious feeling

The language of Rosh Hashanah is derived from the Kabbalah

The Shofar, the sound of compassion

Changing our outlook on Rosh HaShanah

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What do we ask forgiveness for?

by yedidah August 25, 2016
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In Judaism the word “sin” actually means missing the mark. When we look back on our lives , we may see many things we wish now we had done differently. It transpires that the main sin is that we didn’t ask for help when we needed it. An article from the Kabbalist Rabbi Baruch Shalom Ashlag

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The story of the Children of Israel in Egypt is our story

by yedidah April 17, 2016
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Rabbi Ashlag teaches the redemption of the Children of Israel from Egypt as an on-going process within ourselves. He teaches that Egypt is within us, personified as our egoism, and this constitutes our bondage. The elements of the Pesach preparations and Seder night guide us so we can also celebrate our own redemption by the Hand of the Almighty with joy.

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Dealing with Pharaoh

by yedidah January 20, 2016
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“In every generation, a man is obliged to see himself or herself, as if he is coming out of Egypt.” Every single day we mention the redemption from Egypt in our prayers. The coming out of Egypt, is not a one- time historical event, but a present reality for each and every one of us. Each one of us has within us our own personal Egypt. The word Egypt in Hebrew is מצרים which means narrow or constricted places. Each one of us has our own limitations that we need help in overcoming. We need our own redemption. From the Torah of Rabbi Ashlag.

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The Chanukah candle within.

by yedidah December 7, 2015
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Without the wick, the oil, and the vessel to place it in, the flame of the candle cannot light. Each of these three components have an inner equivalent in our service of God, with which we, too, can light our own inner flame. From the teachings of Rabbi Baruch Shalom Ashlag

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