Pesach - The Best Time

And he said: "Show me, now, Your glory!"
 וַיֹּאמַר הַרְאֵנִי נָא אֶת כְּבֹדֶךָ
Shmot 33:18
The commentators struggle with this verse, it's meaning, and particular placement of this verse here. Rashi comments, saying "Moshe perceived that it was a time of [G-d’s] good will, and his words were accepted, so he continued to ask that He show him the appearance of His glory."

Rashi emphasizes for us the particular importance of this time, not long after the sin of the golden calf. But what was this 'glory' that Moshe sought? And  what made this time so apt for approaching G-d with this request?

Rabeinu Bechayei notes that 'glory' (כבדך) is spelled without the letter VAV (ו). This was no accident and bring special meaning to the word, where the first letter, CHAF (כ) represents KETER (כתר). KETER is the highest in the order of the sephirot.

The word Keter means “crown” and stands above all the other Sefirot, like the crown stands above the head. A king’s crown distinguishes him from his people so that they can subjugate themselves to him. The subjects of a sovereign are called “subjects of the crown” due to their loyalty, and nullification to the crown and its authority. Keter is the Sefirah that stands above all the Sefirot, and is equated with “Divine will” (Ratzon) and “Pleasure” (Taanug). Divine will is the external level of Keter and Pleasure the internal level of Keter. The highest, most transcendent level is “Faith” (Emunah). (The Sefirot)

Adding further meaning and significance to this word comes from the remaining letters: BET, DALET, CHAF.

The numerical value (gematria) of these letters comes to 26:
BET (ב) - two .
DALET (ד): four
CHAF (ך): twenty

26 is the value of G-d's name (the tetragramatron).

Repentance from Love
The Slonimer Rebbe comments in The Netivot Shalom that the timing of this request is particular. To understand this, we must first look at a piece from the Gemorah Yoma (86B)
Resh Lakish said that repentance is so great that premeditated sins are accounted as though they were merits, as it is said: And when the wicked turneth from his wickedness, and doeth that which is lawful and right, he shall live thereby!
The Slonimer Rebbe first comes to explain the way in which iniquity can turn to merit. He brings an allegory. A father gives his son nice clothes for the holiday. Then his son goes out and carelessly plays, staining and ruining his clothes. Seeing this the child is upset. He is not upset over the damage to the clothes, but for how he has disappointed his father. This gives way to fear and sincere remorse, so that when he approaches his father who sees how his son has let him down and how sorry his son appears, his father can't be angry. Rather at this time, the father's first thought is how to comfort his son and reassure him that he understands his feelings, and knows that his son regrets his behavior.

This allegory comes to explain the piece in Yoma. Where a transgressor turns to G-d with such sincere and deep feelings of remorse for their actions, G-d is moved to comfort them and reassure them that all is not lost. The most profound present He can give is to take those iniquities and turn them to merits.

The Time for Repentance
This is significance of Moshe's entreaty at this time, requesting to see the ultimate side of G-d's glory. Just following the hardest fall of the Jewish people since leaving Egypt, the sin of the golden calf, this is the time for serious soul-searching. Like Rashi notes that this was "the time of G-d's good will", motivated by sincere repetance. Moshe turns to G-d at this lowest hour, truly showing the sincerity of their remorse. He reflects on this by reaching out to Hashem, asking not to be turned away but to be accepted, and brought in. Like the father's reaction to his child, Moshe asks G-d to bring him closer and show holy levels of Hashem's constenance that were never revealed before

Pesach and Repentence
So also during this holiday period where we are surrounded by mitzvot (eating matzah and celebrations) that he should be stirred to sincere repentance and be drawn closer to Hashem. That our repentance should be wholly accepted and be a step for further building our relationship with Hashem.

Pesach Sameach

No comments:

Post a Comment