Sunday, June 05, 2005


Verse 35 refers back to verse 34 and provides the answer for infinite mercy in the midst of all of our troubles.

'35. What is this like? A king wanted to punish and whip his slaves. One of his governors stood up and asked the reason for this punishment. When the king described the offence, the governor said, "Your slaves never did such a thing. I will be their bondsman until you investigate it more thoroughly." In the meantime, the king's anger was calmed. '

As a result of our past actions and thoughts we find ourselves perhaps in the midst of chaos. What do we do? How can we extricate ourselves or lessen the effects of this karma. We go back to basics which means watching our thoughts and our attitude even in the midst of this chaos. We look for the light. The king above is the karma which seeks to overrun those who are unaware of its effect, making them slaves to the king. The governor is our conscience and inner voice which says, "wait a minute. What are the causes that are bringing on these effects." Once you learn to look within for this kind of answer or as he says above, 'to investigate it more thoroughly,' then you are getting to the heart of the matter. You are also short circuiting Karma which cannot proceed when we become aware of the cause and then seek to alleviate the Call this repentance if you will. Call it stopping in the middle of a road going nowhere and backtracking until we find the right road. The result is control and the awareness of control. Nothing can take the place of a realized thought.

'36. His students asked: Why is the letter Daleth thick on the side? He replied: Because of the Segol which is in the small Patach. It is thus written (Psalm 24:7), "The openings (pitchey) of the World." There He placed a Patach above and a Segol below. It is for this reason that it is thick.'

The Segol is an E type vowel pronouced ay as in Hay when written like this .. and eh when written with two dots with a dot underneath in the middle. Also another form is the two dots .. with the dot in the middle and two lengthwise dots next to it. The Patach is an A type vowel as in ah designated by a single dash underneath the letter or a dashwith an intersecting line making it look like a "t". The vowels are what give life to the consonants or the letters themselves. Without the vowels language would be a series of hissings. What this passage is saying is that the Daleth gets its shape from the combination of vowels or that you can see the Segol or dots in the small or reduced Patach. Psalm 24:7 gives away the meaning with this very familiar passage.

'Lift up your heads, O ye gates, and be ye lifted up, ye everlasting doors; {N}that the King of glory may come in.'

Could it be any clearer? Daleth is the door. The opening to the world are your thoughts as they arise and then go through their permuations. These gates are the gates of understanding, called the Fifty Gates of Understanding. These 50 Gates re really 49 days or 7 weeks of inspiration and deep meditation followed by one day of revelation or prophecy, that Israel lived through from the time of the Exodus from Egypt until the time they received the Torah at Mount Sinai. Basically this is the time from Passover to Shavuos, a time we are currently in. Shavuos or the giving of the light of the law occurs this year at sundown on June 12 and ends on June 14 at nightfall. The timing of our study of the Bahir could not be more in the groove than we currently are. Here is a link to the 50 Gates of Understanding amongst other things.

Scroll down to find them. They are configurations of the ways in which the Tree of Life may be seen. These doors or gates of wisdom aren't to be traversed specifically in any order although it may sometimes seem as though this is exactly what is taking place. In the case of our study here we come upon them all at once and therefore are served the entire portion with a caution to take in only as much as you can digest in a sitting. In terms of thought they represent the ways we may express our thoughts and be carried along to the next idea or inspiration. This is their purpose and we will not be taking anything from them but these inspirations.

'37. What is the Patach? It is an opening (Patach). What is meant by an opening? This is the direction of north, which is open to all the world. It is the gate from which good and evil emerge. And what is good? He mocked them and said: Did I not tell you that it is a small Patach (opening)? They said: We have forgotten, teach us again. He reviewed it and said: What is this like? A king had a throne. Sometimes he carried it on his arm, and sometimes on his head. They asked why, and he replied: Because it is beautiful and it is a pity to sit on it. They asked: Where did he place it on his head? He replied: In the open Mem. It is thus written (Psalm 85:12), "Truth sprouts up from the earth, and the righteousness looks down from heaven."

The Patach is the vowel we learned about in verse 37. Once again the idea of gate comes into play. The master is teaching and is playing with his students. Another side trip to disregard. The throne that the King carries with him and sometimes carries on his arm or on his head is a reference to the tefillim which are worn on the arm and the head. Spiritually we think about something and then act upon it. This action is carried out by our hands, an extension of the arm. Tefillim symbolize our connection with unity. The unity of heart and soul, mind and body, thought and form. When we make the effort to seek higher wisdom then this higher wisdom dawns upon us. As the Psalm says truth is in our being so much so that it fills us up as we seek our good which is symbolized by heaven. The place where the crown is located in the Open Mem, Mem,the Great Mother, the seat of understanding or Binah where the thoughts go forth in cycles of emanation.


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