UPDATED MAY 26 2015
It says in the Parsha “And when the people heard these evil tidings, they mourned; and no man put on him his ornaments” (Exodus 33:4).
1) Why do the Children of Israel respond to the bad news that they will not be led directly by God by removing their ornaments?
2) Next, God affirms the people’s decision not to wear their ornaments, commanding them, “Remove your Ornaments,” and adding, “[Then] I may know what to do with you” (33:5). What is it about the removal of the ornaments that causes God to reconsider His relationship with the people?
The Malbim notes that the majority of our ancestor did not worship the calf, but they also didn’t protest against it and stop its worshipers from carrying out their actions they are no longer deserving of the gifts of God, that they have sinned gravely and destroyed their intimate connection with God. Finally, the shedding of the ornaments represents an understanding that they have utilized some of those very gifts to betray God, to construct and create the anti-covenant. Its written “And Yisrael were stripped of their Crowns-ornaments (‘edyom’) from Har Chorev” (mount Sinai). “When Israel said ” nasa vi nishma” (‘ we will do and we will hear ‘, 60,000 ministering angels came down and put 2 Crowns on each of their heads; One for Na’aseh and one for Nishmah. When they sinned with the Golden Calf, 120,000 angels of destruction descended and took from them both Crowns” (Talmud, Shabbat 18a). The Avnei Nezer questioned this, arguing that since they had sinned by their actions only the Crown of Naaseh should have been taken. They still had retained the merit of Nishmah. However, ‘ Crown’ is a matter of kingship that separates the king from the rest of the people, so too, their Crowns separated each person from their own personality and own individuality. All their actions were only for the sake of Heaven, rather than for the spiritual satisfaction, status or good feelings that they may bring. For such an achievement not only actions are needed but also ‘ Nishmah’. After the Golden Calf, their religious actions were once again primarily for their own spiritual benefit and not primarily for the sake of Heaven. So the angels took back both the Crown of Naaseh and that of Nishmah (Israel said “we will do agreeing to accept the Torah even before hearing it”).
3) In addition to the above, the Torah draws a connection between the ornaments and Har Chorev (33:6). What is the meaning of this connection to Sinai?
Let us first turn our attention to the third question raised above, the issue of the connection between the ornaments and Sinai, the meaning of the phrase “edyam me-Har Chorev” (33:5). This phrase might be interpreted as meaning something like “at Har Chorev” or “from Har Chorev and on.” If so, the Torah simply describes the location at which the Israelites removed their ornaments, or the chronological point at which the event took place. However, Rashi (33:3), in accordance with the Talmud (Shabbat 88a), claims that “edyam” refers to the “crowns that the Israelites were given at Sinai when they proclaimed, ‘Na’aseh ve-nishma’ (We will do and we will listen).” Accordingly, the phrase “edyam meihar Chorev” should be interpreted as meaning “from Har Chorev” or “of Har Chorev.”
.What exactly are the ornamentations of Chorev?
The Crowns referred to here are the spiritual Crowns that they received at Har Sinai, when they proclaimed “Na’aseh ve’nishna”,and they then were injected them with the power of invincibility and eternity. R’ Chaim Volozhiner writes in his monumental book, Nefesh Hachaim, that these crowns were the actual breath that came from GOD’s mouth during the Aseres Hadibros (The Ten Commandments), of which the first two were spoken by GOD directly to the people). In what sense does the breath of GOD manifest itself as crown for man? To understand this we must understand what occurred when GOD’s breath was first blown into man. When man was created, the Torah states that GOD blew the breath of life into his nostrils. The breath of life refers to man’s coming to life after receiving his Neshama, his soul, and not simply the life force that animates all creatures. GOD’s breath in man is his Neshama.
Now, this is not to be understood that GOD once blew the breath of life into man long ago, and never connected to him again The sages compare GOD’s connection to man through the breathing of a Neshama (soul) into him to that of a glass maker as he is blowing the glass. The book Nefesh Hachayim explains that when a glass maker is actually blowing the glass there are three places that contain his breath. There is breath that is actually in the glass creation that is being fashioned, in the tube that he blows into to make the glass creation, and there is breath that is still in the blower’s mouth. So too, when GOD blows the breath of life into a person, there is the Neshama that is in the person’s body, the Neshama that is still in GOD’s mouth, so to speak, and there is also a connector of the Neshama in the body to that part of the Neshama which is still left with GOD. Thus, even after a person is put in this world, the person still remains connected to GOD through his Neshama. When we say that the crowns that Yisrael received at the giving of the Torah was from GOD’s mouth, it means that it was additional Neshama that they received.
Just as the Neshama is received directly from GOD’s mouth, so too the Torah is from His mouth, so to speak. King Solomon (proverbs 2:6) says, “GOD gives wisdom, from His mouth, knowledge and understanding.” The Torah and knowledge of it, is referred to as being “from His mouth”. The Medrash expounds this point further with a analogy. The analogy is of a king who had a son who came home one day from school and found the king sitting with a plate full of food. The son requested some food of his father, and the king complied. The son said, “I do not want the food from the plate, I want the food from your mouth.” The king took a piece from his mouth and gave it to the son. The analogy is telling us that Yisrael requested more than just knowledge and a law. They wanted the Torah that is from GOD’s mouth, a living law. The Torah came from GOD’s mouth which is the source of all Neshamot, and therefore could only come with an additional Neshama, the crowns.
Why did these crowns come specifically as a result of saying Na’aseh V’nishmah? To answer this we first have to understand what the meaning of Na’aseh V’nishmah is. Yisrael agreed to fulfill the Torah before even finding out what it was that GOD wanted from them. They were in essence saying, “We have an absolute faith in You, and just want to do whatever You think is right. We cancel our da’as in place of Yours.” Saying Na’aseh V’nishmah was an act of self effacement before GOD. A act of self effacement before GOD, is in essence a direct and very strong connection to Him – I am nothing, and all there is, is GOD.
Connection of two beings is called Dat (Knowledge), a connection between man and wife is referred to as da’as (a man knows his wife). When man connects to GOD, that is called Dat. Referring once again to the verse in proverbs, it says “from your mouth-Dat knowledge”, that is to say that the direct connection that man has to GOD, is “from mouth” the Torah and Neshama. This is the essence of Yisrael, the Torah and GOD are one. They are one and they all come back together at the mouth of GOD.
If we take a closer look at the Midrash with the king and his son, we find an additional insight. The son says to his father the king, “All that I request is that which is from your mouth.” This tells us that if we want what is in GOD’s mouth- the Torah- then we must request it. This is demonstrated further in another Medrash on the same verse. The Medrash relates the following story, “The People of Alexandria asked R’ Yehoshua Ben Chananya, ‘What can man do in order to be wise?’ He answered, ‘Spend a lot of time learning and little time doing business.’ They responded, ‘Many have tried and were not successful.’ R’ Yehoshua answered them, ‘Then you must request mercy from the One to Whom the wisdom belongs, as it is stated, ‘Becouse God gives wisdom from mouth’” In order to receive knowledge, you must request it through Tefillah. Tefillah makes a person closer to GOD.
This is what it means when it says that “Moshe’s face shone”. This is the light of Tefillin, and Moshe merited to receive all the light of Tefillin. “And Moshe would take the tent“—this also is the lights of Tefillin. Moshe merited all of the lights of Tefillin. “Therefore now put your ornaments off of you” (Ibid., 33:5)—these are the lights of Tefillin. Before the sin, the Tefillin were just a supernal shining, the supernal shining of Chanoch. That was before the sin of the golden calf. After the sin of the golden calf, it was no longer possible to see the lights of the tefillin. The light of the Tefillin was hidden away. It was hidden away within the Tefillin themselves. Before the sin of the golden calf, one saw actual lights: supernal shining. “And Moshe would take the tent”—he took all the lights of the tefillin of all the Jewish people, and that is what made his face shine. Before then, every single Jew was shining by himself. Afterward, Moshe’s shining was the sum of all the shine of the Jewish people together. Before then, they weren’t afraid to look at Moshe’s face, because they all shone, but afterwards, when Moshe was the only one shining with this light, then they were afraid to look in Moshe’s face.
Because the women did not contribute their jewels to the making of the molten calf, they maintained a loyalty at Sinai; they never stripped off their crowns.
Today, much of humanity continues to worship one form of a Golden Calf or another. Many have turned their religions into Golden Calves. Many have even turned Judaism and Torah into Golden Calves. Torah Judaism gets turned into a Golden Calve when Torah gets stripped down to only a religion of learning jurisprudence with its spiritual teachings and message lost and being portrayed as only a religion of ritual practices, each of which have nothing to do with the original sources of classical spiritual meaning of the Torah.
All this is as worshiping a false face of YHWH.By creating a false face for religion, they equally create a false face for God, who is supposed to be found within religion. In their quest for religious piety with their stricter and stricter approach to law with out spiritual meaning or devotion, they have built for themselves a modern Golden Calf. It is because of this religious approach to Torah Judaism that not many bother to look for, or to listen for the Still Soft Voice that still echoes within us from its inception at Sinai. People fail to even recognize that the purpose of the Torah was to connect man to God so that we can know God in this world, Love God and cleave to God. This way of Judaism of Religion without spiritual awareness, is not Torah Judaism at all but as worshiping another god, a new golden calf, we have all too many Golden Calves today, this is only the Torah version. Most people these days revolves around something other than the God and that thing is their “Golden Calf”, be it a quest for money of fame or what ever else that has no part in holiness that is the primary motivating force in their life. But we shall come close to the God by the Torah.
Said Reish Lakish “The Holy One, Blessed be He, will in the future return them [those crowns] to us, as it says, ‘Those redeemed by GOD will return and come to Tzion in song, and everlasting happiness upon their heads.'”
On the 29th of may (this year) is the day the Bible, The Torah was Given on Mount Sinai. This is not only a historical event, But its energy, aspect of the experience come around each year for those who are there to receive it. Something so awesome happened on that day it changed the world we live in for all time, and it will again. The Torah is more than a book, but it is the “blueprint” of all creation. Unlike a normal blue print this one has creative power. From it the world is sustained continually and built. Each year this process is renewed on the day the Torah IS given called in the Bible “Shavout”. The world is Changing and its new instructions, orders of unfolding of the new Divine energy are about to be released. Those for the whole world and your souls own growth in particular Rabbi Yudan said in the name of Rabbi Meir in the ancient writing on The Song of Songs that the Holy Blessed One said , “Follow my oath and I will make you as the heavenly hosts.”
This Revelation is not from this world. It comes from beyond this dimension. You can take a active part in the revelation of this NEW light. The unfolding of history. There are many ways to make the “connection” to take part in the transmission and the experience.
I am not going to go into detail here now, that shall come later. The main way to “connect” is not to sleep on this coming Thursday night, and occupy in Divine thoughts. By not sleeping you can go beyond your body and come to your higher soul powers as it are these which participate in this event. Dont miss it.
The Torah that Moshe received at mount Sinai was not of his own design. Every other prophet had a personal revelation from G-d and then expected the masses to believe him and to accept his word . The giving of the Torah was radically different. The events at Mt. Sinai were witnessed by over three million human souls, men women, and children. They all experienced together the giving of the Bible (Torah). They all together saw and heard, stood in awe and wonder as something not of this world descended upon the mountain and spoke to them in a voice that sounded like thunder. As its written :
As its written :
“And Moses brought forth the people out of the camp to meet with God; and they stood at the lower part of the mount.
And Mount Sinai was altogether in smoke, because the Lord descended upon it in fire; and its smoke ascended as the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mount trembled greatly. And when the voice of the shofar sounded long, and became louder and louder, Moses spoke, and God answered him by a voice.” (Exodus 19)
See clearly from this, that the TORAH was given to Moses by what we must rightly call an extraterrestrial power.
It may be difficult to believe a single prophet who claims to have had a Divine experiance. It is possible that
such a person is mistaken or self deceived. However when three million people witnessed a “close encounter of the third kind.” That sets the odds highly in their favor that what they collectively saw and heard was real and true. Such a event is hard to deny.
The same extraterrestrial power continued this revelation to the Biblical prophets who explained to the following generations the observance these Divine teachings and to how to safeguard them from inadvertently violating a Torah commandment. Thus bringing Divine retribution on their heads. These words of advice have been observed and practiced for more than 2,400 years. The echoes of these events are still murmuring in the unconscious minds of almost every human being. Whether we like it or not, agree with it or not, the echo of the Ten Commandments and Biblical morality speaks into the hearts and souls of almost everybody in this world.
These Divine teachings will stay in force until the next time we are visited by the Power that came to Sinai. This next visitation is expected to bring to Earth more than just a body of instructions to mankind. The next time we make contact, the prophecy states, the Power revealed at Sinai will come with an invading army, one that will conquer the Earth and install a new world government led by a monarch, who will be a descendant of the Biblical Kind David. When this armada from the Heavens arrives, the Spiritual will welcome it as the coming of the Messiah. The others will most likely be terrified in that their worst nightmare will be coming true –
Earth is being invaded and conquered by a force from “outer space.”
You need to recognize that the episode at Mt. Sinai was not merely a religious event of ancient history. The Torah is no mere book of religious principles. We made contactwith something extraterrestrial on Sinai those many years ago. That “something” identified itself as the Creator. The Creator opened a channel of communication with mankind and gave us instructions for nearly one thousand years.
Mankind has progressed much since those early days when the Jewish people received
the Torah at Mt. Sinai. Most of the world has been influenced by this event. First
Christianity and then Islam built themselves on the back of Torah. Each religion claims
to be the legitimate heir and continuation of the path received at Sinai. Needless to say,
such contradictory claims have led to centuries of conflict. Indeed, the way the 21st century has begun it looks like that a major conflict between Moslem nations and Christian nations is brewing. Moslems nations rally against Israel and the Jews, but one does not need to pierce the veil of this too deep to see that Islam defines its greatest and true enemy as the “American great Satan.” The United States and the European Union (which should rightly be called the United States of Europe) spend billions of dollars on defense and intelligence to protect
themselves from growing threats of Islamic insurgency. Unbeknown to most, but we can rest assured that the Western powers are doing their share to subvert the rule of Islam in Moslem countries. Otherwise, Islamic
fundamentalism will sweep through the Middle East on its way to taking over the world.
What the eventual outcome of this brewing conflict will be, time will tell.
The Prophets thousands of years ago spoke of this conflict that we are seeing today. Realize from this that there is indeed a Force and a Power above that which we humans cannot control or even understand, and that force that spoke at Sinai and to the prophets is the Creator God.
Something happened that night on Mt. Sinai those thousands of years ago. Only a few hold the faith of the message
revealed that night. The rest of us feel that we have evolved beyond the need of such “myths.” However, what is myth and what is reality, better be defined with greater clarity, before we wish to reject an Authority which apparently can impose itself upon us by sheer force of
will as we see displayed in the miracles and wonders of the bible. A Authority that calls itself God the Creator of all. The God at Sinai warned us against our self destructive behaviors. One of the last Prophets Malachi concludes his book with a subtle warning spoken through him By G-d :
“Remember the Torah of Moses my servant, which I commanded to him in Horev for all Israel to observe decrees
and ordinances. Behold, I send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and awesome Day of G-d.
And he will turn the hearts of the fathers with their children, and the hearts of the children with their fathers, lest I come and strike the land with utter destruction.”
The warning is clear. Accept the Torah of G-d and live by it. For the Day of G-d will come and it will be great and awesome.
The Power that made extraterrestrial contact with us centuries ago at Sinai will return.
When that Power-GOD comes back, will we find favor in its eyes, or will it use its incredibly superior Power to tear down mankind and civilization and start all over again? It is a good thing that human technology has progressed as far as it has. It is also good that western world governments have secret military technologies developed and in testing the likes of which we can only imagine existing in science fiction movies. It would even be a good thing if western governments actually did have secret relations with extraterrestrial entities from other planets or dimensions and that they received technological information from them. Why would all this be good? Because when the Supreme Extraterrestrial Power-God comes back to planet Earth to claim its territory and to punish those who have stood against its Torah and its representatives , they will need all the help that they can get. Nonetheless, even with all their advanced technologies, no military weapons will withstand the invading armies of angels led by the Messiah.
The Highest Power will return to this world and will renew upon the Earth a Garden of Eden, one based upon its centuries old
message in the Torah. This is our inevitable human future. We can choose to fight it or embrace it. The consequences of our actions will be telling.
In devarim (deuteronomy) it is written “ Yhv”h is a consuming fire ”. In this parsha we see some evidence of this as when moshe was to go up to mount Sinai, Hashem had him tell the people not to touch the mountain, or go up upon it or gaze on Hashem. We even see here the people asking Moshe to receive the revelation of the torah for all Yisrael as they say “lest we die”
On Yom kippor a goat is given to the other side to appease and occupy it so that the accuser on high does not bring accusations against Yisrael thus allowing Yisrael to do well. The Torah also tells us that one should not go to extreme Holiness discarding all physical pleasures, at least for most people. We are told by our sages of blessed memory that one should always leave a little something to keep the evil inclination occupied and then it will leave them alone so they may succeed in their goal of serving Hashem with their heart and all their soul. For as like with any animal, the “yetzer hora” (evil inclination), the animal soul will if backed into a corner will attack. For this reason we are told to leave something to keep it occupied, as we ascend into Holiness. This does not mean that we should, Heaven forbid, intentionally sin. But it means that by engaging in worldly matters we keep the animal soul occupied enough so that we can cleave to Hashem, ever so close. This is much like we read in the Book of Job when the adversary appears before Hashem on Rosh Hashanah. The Zohar tells us that as a dog is thrown a bone, so Hashem threw Job to the adversary. By this preventing judgment from resting on Yisrael.
The point of this all being that one should always in all their ways cleave to Hashem, but one must be aware as the Holy One is truly a consuming fire. One must approach at the proper pace. Now is a time that the lights are “closed”. During exile revelation of the Shechina from “yichud” (unification) guards and dresses the Shechina in fire. “Hashem is a consuming fire”. One needs words of Torah that are like fire. As words of Torah are as fire that consumes all filth. The “Yetzer Hora” is also fire, but the Torah is the fire that consumes fire. The sitra achra (other side) can’t stand up to consuming fire, it becomes silenced and nullified to He Who formed them as a spark on the coal. Yhv”h spoke to you face to face “out of the midst of fire” which was sent forth by wind and water. The fire, wind and water all came from the shofar at Sinai. It contained them all.
Before Rabbi Nachman of Bresslov went to Aretz Yisrael he went through a great preparation as is necessary for any ascent into Holiness. As it says in the parsa “Hashem took us out of Egypt on eagles wings”. So too we when doing mitzvot in order to attach to Hashem must do them with great inner devotion which is brought about by great preparation. The sages say this preparation gives our mitzvot wings. Wings that bring us ever closer to Hashem. Ultimately preparing ourselves for the ascent from our course physical existence, to a brighter light. The desires that we create while we are in this world are what we take with us when we leave. So may it be that we will all look closer at our parsha seeing His holy name in purity and become the “am segulah” (wondrous people), the particular nation precious to Hashem above all peoples as it says “a nation of priests”, a “Holy nation” Seeing the crown of His Kingship resting in His Kingship over all mankind with our righteous Mashiach, the Holy Temple and a New song quickly in our days.