Monday, June 11, 2012

// // 9 comments

Everything is for a Reason

by Reb Gutman Locks @ Mystical Paths

     Every letter in the Torah has been given to us for a good reason. Even the location of the letters on the scroll has been handed down from Moshe on Mt. Sinai.

     Not only has the location of the letters been handed down for a good reason, but everything the Torah tells us to do has been given to us for a good reason.

     Many times we do not know the reason why we do things the way we have been taught, but we still do them. The problem with saying that such or such is the reason why we do something is that the real reason is surely much deeper than we can fathom at any particular time. Whatever reasons we find for the tradition will not be the ultimate reason. So, even without knowing the real reasons, we continue to do them, but this does not mean that we are not to ask, “Why?”

     The blessing that Hashem commanded the Kohaneim (Jewish priests) to give to the Jewish people is written in the Torah in a most unusual manner. There is no other place anywhere that we find such a strange pattern. Why is it like this? When we ask the learned people they will all answer, “It is L’Moshe Me’Sinai” (the law as handed down to Moshe on Mt. Sinai). But still, we should look for a reason why it has been handed down this way.

     The words of the blessing are “Hashem bless you and guard you. Hashem make His countenance shine upon you and be gracious to you. Hashem turn His countenance toward you and grant you peace.”

      The Kohanim are instructed to lift their hands when they bless the people. But this tradition is not mentioned in the Torah. It is found in the Talmud where there is a detailed discussion of how high they are to lift them when they say this blessing.[i] There are a number of different customs as to how they are to hold their fingers and arms when the blessing is being given. But all sources say that they are to use their hands when they do it.

     What does this have to do with the unusual way the blessing is written in the Torah? Here is how the blessing is arranged:

image005

When we turn the scroll around the words look like this:

image006

The unusual design forms the shape of a hand.


[i] Mishnah Sotah 7:6

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

You might want to take note of the white space in the middle of the picture. It looks to me more like the position the hands are to be in (the right hand being the example there). Remember Mr. Spock of Star Trek fame?...

CDG, Yerushalayim

yaak said...

I never heard this pshat before. יישר כחך - beautiful.

Shiloh said...

Nehemia Gordon will be releasing a book on the prayer of the Kohanim. It will be earthshaking. Check it out if you have the courage.

yaak said...

Shiloh, I try not to read books written by Apikorsim, even if they may have been childhood friends and classmates.

Shiloh said...

Yaak, he is revealing what those you follow have covered up from the Jewish people. It's nothing to do whether or not you disagree with him. I strongly disagree with you but do I use such language against you? You are a so called Torah Jew and look at your language against a fellow Jew who has a different opinion then that of yourself. We can disagree Yaak, but be careful as he and many others are correcting what the so called leaders have done, shackled us. Your derogetory term is strickly based from religious texts that are that of men. He is basing his book strickly on the Tanach. It's sad when a Jew uses the Tanach to help the Jewish people get out of the geulah. Sadly most religious Jews are not advanceing the geulah but supressing it further into the abyss.

Shiloh said...

get out of the galut (not geulah), sorry for the typo.

Shiloh said...

Yaak, your words trouble me, let me explain. Last night Nehemia actually called me, I have not been incontact via sms since the previous new moon sighting (which is biblical, if you want where the rabbi's changed it I will provide the tractate in the Talmud for you). He feels he has been had by a Jew who wears the outfit. He did a small shiputz on his apartment.

A little background, Nehemia and I are not friends. I sms him when I site the new moon and that's the extent. We met for a coke probably a year ago, he thought my ideas where way out there so a friendship never developed. I was very supprised he called me. So I told him I was happy to come by and help him with honest subtrades to help him get his house up to order before his wedding. Nehemia mentioned to me last night that he was reading some information from a famous rabbi and he thought of me. Now I am not so out of the park as I passed onto Nehemia some information that was passed orally amoung for sure the cheif rabbi's that most of the general public is simply unaware. The former Cheif rabbi Mordechi Eliyahu to be precise.

Nehemia is a big boy, he can certainly stand toe to toe with any rabbinical Jew so he does not need me to speak. But Yaak, he does not use ad hominem slander against the rabbi's, he never calls them names. Actually he says'that there is much wisdom in the talmud etc but it's just opinion of men. Just as is Confusious.

So, who would I tend to believe a follower of God? Someone who is upright in character, honest, kind to all or one who uses religious definitions in a derogitory way. I know he prays daily in the exact method described in the Tanach. I know he eats exactly biblically kosher.

Lets drop him, turn to a freind of mine who is a settler. He called me two weeks ago saying he found the perfect job with a kablan who wears the outfit (exactly the type you where as he is from the same Jewish sect)and was so excited about it. This kablan I met some 10 years ago, spoke to him once and knew his character. I knew this kablan was out of work for sometime and said I was happy he has work to feed his family. I said to my friend, though you must be careful, he asked why, I said you cannot take anything he say's as being true and he WILL cheat you. My freind hung up on me. I had not heard from him until prior to shabbat. He called me. What happened to him, the kablan after agreeing to a price before the job started said at the end of the job it was too much and payed him 1/2 the agreed price. He said if you don't like it he could take him to beit din. Then he said he had another job that he could use my friend on at the price he decided to pay, not the price they agreed to prior to starting the job. My friend said to me how could I say anything bad about such a holy man? He is not holy, nothing of the sort. Actually Gutman knows him in the rova. They guy wearing the outfit is anything but holy, but a scam. Now my friend is waking up to his naive outlook of 'holy' people. By their actions you will know their source.

I have to run to work, but Yaak, because someone does not agree with your derech does not mean they are not decent humans who fear God. I would sooner anyday of the week trust someone like Nehemia even if I disagree with him in several ways as he does with me then to trust anyone in an outfit.

Just so you know, most of my circle are those in the outfit. Many have incredible respect for me including rabbi's from some very respected yeshivot here in Jerusalem. Rabbi's in surrounding Charedi communities give me very much respect which I return to them. They know I am against their dereck and their teachings that have solved nothing. I explain to them why.

Have a good day, and think about your religious piety. It may not be so pious when the Mashiach is fully revealled telling you that you have errored greatly.
Kol Tuv Yaak.

yaak said...

Shiloh,

You totally took my words out of context. I never said that anyone was not a decent human being. I didn't say that anyone doesn't fear G-d, although I greatly differ with the way some fear Him. And as much as I differ from you, I respect you as a Jew too. All I said was that I don't read books authored by Apikorsim.

Now, according to the Rambam (Hilchot Mamrim 3:3), only those whose parents taught them the wrong derech of not believing in Torah Shebe'al Peh are considered Tinokot Shenishbu, but if they thought of it on their own (halacha 2), then the halacha in Halacha 1 applies. I'm not saying that we have the authority to do what it says in Halacha 1 nowadays, but it applies. This would make the subject a full-fledged Apikoras.

Now of course you won't consider the Rambam authoritative. Your loss, but when looking at those who have errored greatly, you need look no further than the mirror.

Kol Tuv.

Anonymous said...

Always find Shilo's rants against the Oral Torah very disturbing. Both the Written & Oral Laws were given at Sinai. If one accepts one and not the other, it is as if they do not accept the Torah! If he has gripes with today's rabbis, much of which can be understood, because before Moshiach's coming, our sages tell us that many in the rabbinic and religious world will be of the erev rav/erev zeir and most of the 'prominent' Jews are of the erev rav, trying desperately to stop the geulah. Because of them, do not blame the Torah! There were, in our history, those who broke away from the true Torah scholars and, thus, were eventually lost to our people. There is only one Torah consisting of: B'ctav & B'alpeh.

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