Godssecret's Weblog


PARSHA AKEV SOD

BS’D

UPDATED July 30th                                   2018

AKEV !

Akev

Here we stand after the deep solemn days of contemplation and repentance of the 17th of Tamuz and the 9th of  Av. Now with a period of rejoicing yet approaching of Rosh Hashanah Yom Kippor and climaxing with Succot. To prepare us further for these times we have Ellul. Elul is a time of introspection, repentance, reconciliation, and heightened spirituality a time to prepare to be judged and sentenced by God with what will be in the coming year, for you and the whole world. Elul is a time for personal growth.  By  “Teshuva” (repentance) they may take their Holy garment back. Just as we go from days of solitude to rejoicing at times. so is this pattern essential to learning. We see this in our Torah parsha.

In the parsha we are told  again how Moshe went up to receive the tablets of the covenant for a second time. One major thing was different the 2nd time though as we are told that Moshe made the vessel, the ark in which to put the tablets of Stone. In the same way as Moshe prepared a vessel, the ark, for the tablets of stone. So did Hashem prepare all the people of Yisrael for their Divine mission. As we are told how Hashem led Yisrael 40 years in the desert to humble us, and try our hearts. As it is written ”And you shall remember all the way which the Yhv”h Elohech”a led you these forty years in the wilderness, to humble you, and to prove you, to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep his commandments, or not. And he humbled you, and let you hunger, and fed you with manna, which you knew not, neither did your fathers know; that he might make you know that man does not live by bread only, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of the Lord does man live.” (8:2-3) He fed us Mana to show that all is sustained by the Holiness of spirituality. This was Necessary so that among other reasons Yisrael would then be ready to enter aretz Yisrael fearlessly, and yet know that it wasn’t their strength that would deliver the land into their hands. This process of solemn preparation is Necessary to prepare one for reception of Holiness of the Torah in rejoicing. As we see that a cup must be clean for water to be poured into it and remain clean. Or as skin is cleaned  with alcohol before a injection is given. One must prepare as vessel for Kidusha. As the Magid of Koznitz teaches אשרקדישנו means being invited to Holiness in a individual way as קדושין (marriage). One needs to be sanctified to their creator, as He Himself is Holy. One must prepare to be summoned to sanctify themselves in every moment so there will be received their prayer and Torah. They must be Holy. Sanctified by mitzvot (commandments).1

One must prepare themselves for the coming Holiness. For this we go from the solemn days of the 17th of Tamuz, 9th of Av and the days of Ellul. Rabbi Nachman of Bresslove teaches that the Woman (Shechinah) comes becouse of the aspect of Ellul. This is the ”kavana” (intent) of Ellul. רצון (will) is made in Ellul. From Ellul comes tikun of ”blemishing the Covenant-Brit”. Ellul is a time where one’s “cavana” (intention) is “running and returning”. This refers to our running into Holiness, filling our days of Ellul with activities that will bring us higher in Holiness. But not only do we “run” to the God but in the month which precedes the Jewish New Year, Rosh Hashanah is the  month called “Elul”, it is said concerning this time called “Ellul” that “the time the king is in the field.” At this time God, the King of Kings is accessible by all who go out into the fields of Holiness to find Him. “Ellul” is a acrostic (meaning that the first letters of the words of a verse spell it out ). The first  letters of the words “Ani Ledodi V’Dodi Li” – ”I am to my beloved and my beloved is to me,” a quote from the Song of Love, or Shir HaShirim, by King Solomon in Hebrew spell our “Ellul”. As the verse  alludes to Elul is a time of love. Avraham Abulafia teaches that if your heart runs return it to it’s place, by this is cut a covenant. By this way there is recieved 72 names.2 Moshe spent 40 days on Har Seni from Rosh Chodesh Ellul until Yom kippor. This is when he recieved the 2nd tablets. Ellul is the time for the”makiff” to become ”penimi”, creating a new beautiful garment called ”Chashmal”.3 From “teshuva” in “Ellul” there can be given to you the “Atz Chyim” (Tree of Life), which is the “ו” son of י”ה . Then you will be no longer called Servant, but “son of God”.1 This all brings us to Joyful Holy days of  Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippor and  Succot.

Parsha “Akev” draws our attention to the idea of  “Akev”. Our forefather Yaakov has a “Akev” (heel) quality so his name is Yakov.

  Rabbi Akiva was also endowed with “Akev” (heel) qualities as Yakov. He also took on all his difficulties and tests in life and over came them. From being born as a descendant of gentiles who converted in his youth he hated Torah scholars. But through his great commitment and effort at learning Torah he rose to up to be the teacher of 24,000 disciples.

“Souls of the heels” are trapped in the problems of heels

This ability to be able to take on all his difficulties through great commitment and effort is what is most needed in “Ikvay DeMeshicha”, (literally the heels of Mashiach) which is a name given to the period preceding the coming of Messiah. At that time the most spiritual concepts need to be brought down to earth through the Nation of Israel. One of the signs the Talmud cites concerning the generation of “Ikvay DeMeshicha” is the prevalence of brazenness its opposite Holy brazenness is an integral part of the process of redemption, a part of the “Achilles heel” of the process. It is as if a snake were curled around the heels of the Messiah, nevertheless we will not give up.

Danger lurks at the heel, as we by the snake through which Adam was cursed, “And he shall bite your heel” (ibid.3:15).

Of Yaakov its written “And his hand was holding on to Eisav’s heel”

King David said: “Your servant was careful in them  [the mitzvot], in keeping them is ‘Eikev Rav’ (great reward)” (Tehillim19:12).

The sanctity of the Land of Israel is connected with its fruits, insofar as the omer, first fruits, and two loaves of bread are only brought  brought from produce of the Land of Israel  as taught in Mishnah, Kelim 1:6.

 Parashat Ekev may have the most impressive verses emphasizing and explaining the connection between the nation of Israel and their land.  The land of Israel in not the most ideal farmland at all. The land of Israel is not an irrigated land that is always fertile and productive. But The land of Israel is a arid land dependent on the Mercy of God for rain, unlike Egypt which is watered by the Nile.The land of Israel is unique in that nothing is ever certain in this regard: It can receive a large quantity of rainfall in a particular year, and will then be blessed with fertility and abundance; but on a very dry year, with little rainfall, it can become a veritable desert. God always keeps his eye on the land of Israel, from year’s beginning to year’s end, to determine its fate in this respect. If God desires it, the land and its inhabitants will enjoy the highest degree of plenty, but at the same time, if God desire it, they will experience the lowest degree of destitution.

 The land of Israel is a land “on which the Lord your God always keeps His eyes, from year’s beginning to year’s end” – It is a land of divine providence.   

  When Noah divided the world, the land of Canaan was allotted to Shem by God. The Jewish People are descendants of Shem. God intimated to Abraham as early as the Covenant of the Pieces that the people of Israel would not dwell continuously in the land of Israel, rather that there would be interruptions of exile due to failure to observe the commandments of the Torah. The exile in Egypt Rabbi Abahu, citing Rabbi Eleazar, says was because Abraham sinned when he caused his students to interrupt their Torah studies so to fight in his war against the four kings in order to rescue Lot. The Edomite (Roman) exile, began with the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 C.E., and is lasting longest of all the exiles now its more than  2,000 years. The people were dispersed throughout many countries, suffering humiliation, persecution, blood libels and harsh decrees.   This suffering reached its peak during the Second World War, when the Germans with the aid of their henchmen in other nations planned to annihilate the entire Jewish people, slaughtering six million of them. Throughout the Torah we are told that the reason for exile is failure to fulfill the commandments of the Torah. We are promised in the Torah that if we uphold it with joy and good spirit and constantly ponder its wisdom, then God will remove from us all those things that stand in our way of observing it, such as illness, war, famine and the like, and will shower on us all the good things that support us in following the Torah, such as plentiful sustenance, peace, an abundance of silver and gold and we be free to acquire wisdom and occupy ourselves with good deeds so that we merit life in the world to come. So let us  fulfill as it is  written in our parsha ”You take care to do all the commandments  which I command  you this day, that you may live, and  multiply, and go in  and  possess the land which the Lord  swore  to your fathers.” And “Every place where the soles of your feet shall tread shall be yours; from the wilderness and Lebanon , from the river, the river Euphrates, to the  uttermost sea shall be your border. There shall no man be able to stand before you; for the Yhv”h Elohecha”a shall lay the fear of you and the dread of you upon all the land that you shall tread upon, as he has said to you.(8:1,1124-25) In this blessing let us stand strongly against our enemies. Those within  and without. So in all of this the people the Holy One has chosen  ”as it is on this day”, meaning their seed after them forever will go from the exile of preparation to heights that we have never perceived with our righteous mashiach quickly in our days.

1.   Sulam on Zohar Achray Mot p.61b

Avodat Yisrael p.34

2Safer ha Cheshek

3Lekuty Mahoran  6:3, p.45,#21, Sulam on Zohar Mishpotim p.115a, Kadoshim p.83a