Thursday, August 17, 2017

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Don’t Blow It

   by Reb Gutman Locks

Don't Blow It


     Early this morning I showed one of the Kotel workers that someone lit a candle and placed it on the wall right by the Kotel. It used to be that they were not strict about candles burning by the Kotel and it really got out of hand. Some even put candles right on the Kotel itself! Many of the walls around the Kotel were covered with black gunk from the candles. Then, a few years ago, they had a major cleanup and since then they have been strict not to allow anyone to light candles and set them on the walls.

     The young man ran right over and blew out the candle.

     When he returned I gently told him that we should not blow out candles. "Maybe wave your hand close to them and the wind will put them out, but don't ever blow out a candle."

     He wanted to know why.

     I explained, "Breath is a level of our soul, and our souls have come into this world to share light, not to extinguish it."  

     The word for breath in Hebrew is Neshama. Neshama is also the name of one of the levels or dimensions of our soul. Wind is Ruach. Ruach also means spirit and is the name of another level of our soul.

     He understood right away.

     When we follow our customs such as not blowing out a candle, and if we pay attention, they can be a reminder of our purpose in being here. Obviously, the light we have come to share is not the physical light that comes from a candle but the spiritual light that comes from showing someone how to serve Hashem.

     Also, physical light can be a reminder of spiritual light. For instance, we cannot see the actual physical light but we do see what the light does, what it shows us. Somewhat like this, we cannot see the spiritual Presence, but we can see what It does.

1 comment:

  1. I think the word for breath is "Neshima" which is related of course to "Neshama". Thank you for this article.


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