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Shabbat Morning Class - Parasha Beshalach - Tu Beshvat

Rabbi Mansour 2010
Shabbat Morning class
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This weeks Parasha coincides with the holiday of Tu Beshvat. Tu Beshvat is a
very significant day, as it marks an end to the difficult period of ????? that span the
month of Tevet and the first half of the month of Shevat. From Tu Beshvat onwards we
end the period of Din and enter the period of kindness-Hesed. This is hinted in the
formation of Hashem’s name of the month of Shevat. (The 4 letters of Hashem’s name
of ???? can be reconfigured 12 different ways. These 12 configurations represent the 12
months of the year; each month has its own configuration.) The configuration for the
month of Shevat is ??-?? . The first two letters of this name- the ?? - are
"backwards"(since Hashem’s name really begins with ? -? ), but the second half- the
letters ?? - are "straight" and in order (since Hashem’s name does indeed end in .(?'?
This shows us that in the first half of the month we are not under Hashem’s "straight"
kindness, as signified by the first half of the letters of this month’s configuration - the ?'?
- being "backwards", but in the second half of the month we are under Hashem’s direct
kindness as signified by the second half of the configuration- ?'? - being in the proper
Tu Beshvat is like the "magnet" that connects us to the holiday of Purim, which
in turn connects us to the holiday of Pesah. Since 30 days before a holiday we have a
"magnetic" pull towards the holiday and a connection to it. From Tu Beshvat on, we are
already being drawn to the happy and holy times of Purim and Pesah.
?? ????
The portion of ?? ???? is one of the only portions of the Torah that we recite in our
daily Tefilot. This shows us the importance of ?? ???? . It is written, that if one recites the
?? ???? with the proper ???? - concentration he will merit to be spared of any difficulty
that he is experiencing. Since ?? ???? is the song about being saved from the ????
????? , and everyone’s personal " ???? " – exile- is called ????? .????? is from the word
??? , which means constriction or difficulty. The Jews rejoiced and sang about being
saved from the turbulent waters of the ocean, and when a Jew recites ?? ???? with the
proper concentration, he too is saved from his personal "turbulent waters" of life.
?? ???? ???" " Rashi explains " ?? ????? ??? ??? ???? ????? ???? "- "then, when he
saw the miracle, it came upon his heart to sing a song". There are several
interpretations to the depth behind Rashi’s comments. Firstly, the eyes represent the
physical and the heart represents the spiritual. Since the eyes can only see something
that is before them. However the heart can sense things that are "above" the physical,
that are not visible to the eyes. The qualities of the eyes and heart- the physical and
spiritual-are both inherent in the Torah. The Torah was given on Mount Sinai and at
that time the world was in danger of being destroyed, since if the Jews had refused to
accept the Torah Hashem would not have let the world continue to exist. Once the
Jews accepted the Torah, they saved the world from destruction and therefore
technically the world now "belongs" to them. The physical world is only in existence
because of the Torah, therefore the Torah possess physical benefits- benefits
represented by the eyes. Even so, we study the Torah for its spiritual benefits, to
become closer to Hashem, which corresponds to the "heart" element of the Torah.
These 2 qualities of the Torah- eyes and heart- are hinted to in the last words of the
Torah. The Torah ends with the words; ????? ?? ????? -"in front of the eyes of the Jews".
The last letter of the Torah is a ? , and the first letter in the Torah is the ? of .??????
The ? and ? spell ?? – heart. Thus, we see the mention of both eyes and heart in the
final words (and opening word) of the Torah.
The Jewish people actually had two redemptions, the first redemption was six
months before the splitting of the sea, and that was when the labor ceased. The
difficult backbreaking torture that the Egyptians inflicted on the Jews stopped six
months earlier with the onset of the first plague. The second redemption was when the
Jews actually crossed the sea and were finally free from the Egyptians, to enter the
desert and accept the Torah. This second redemption was the main redemption.
Since, what good is freedom if we have nothing to do with our lives?! The second
redemption is the one that represents our freedom to accept the Torah and is the
reason for our existence in this world! This is alluded to in the Hagadah where we
celebrate and read about ????? ????? -the leaving of Egypt, we read ??? ????? ????
?????? ????? ??? ?? ????? "whoever expounds on the leaving of Egypt is
praiseworthy" The Haggadah praises one who speaks of the Jews leaving Egypt, not
just the stoppage of work! He is praised since he focuses on the spiritual - which is
represented by the leaving of Egypt - rather than the physical – which is represented
by the stoppage of work. We are supposed to speak about this and praise Hashem
the night of Passover until sleep overtakes us (interestingly, on Shavuot many of us
stay up all night even though this is a Minhag, but on Pesah we go to sleep
immediately after the Seder when we have a Misvah from the Torah to stay up and
speak about the exodus!). Moshe Rabeinu was praising Hashem for this freedom to
accept and live by the Torah - which as mentioned represent the eyes and heart. This
is what Rashi was hinting to us, ????? - when he saw the miracle, ??? ???? ????? - it
came on his heart to sing, Rashi mentions the eyes and the heart. Even so, we see
that Moshe actually sang from his heart- ???? ????? , since that is the most important
quality of the Torah, - its ability to bring us close to our G-d.
It is written that Moshe was "created" from the heart of Abraham Avinu. (not that he
was physically created from Abraham‘s heart, this is to be taken in a spiritual sense).
This is hinted to in our daily prayers in ????? ??? we say the words "???? ??? ?????
????? ?? ???? ???? ????" - "you found Abraham’s heart trustworthy in front of you". It is
written about Moshe; ??? ???? ???? ??? ; this shows us the connection between the heart
of Abraham ( ???? ), and Moshe ( ???? ). Moshe shared the same quality as Abraham,
namely, ?????? ??? - to sacrifice for Hashem, as seen by Abraham’s sacrificing his
beloved son (whom he waited all his life for), on the alter without questioning G-d at all.
And Moshe, when he was told by Hashem that he would be the start of a new nation
and that everyone would be destroyed, he responded "destroy me with them"! Like a
true leader, Moshe was willing to sacrifice everything - even having his name
mentioned in the Torah- as it says: " ???? ?? ????? "- all for the sake of the Jewish
people. Where did Moshe get this strength from? From Abraham, and this is what is
meant when it says that Moshe was from the heart of Abraham.
When it speaks about Abraham’s preparing for the sacrifice of Yishak, the Torah
says; ????? ??? ???? - "he split the logs of wood" (for the alter). They needed to be split in
order that Abraham could inspect them to insure that they did not contain any worms.
In the merit of the splitting of the wood by Abraham, the sea split for his children to
cross. This is what Rashi is hinting to when he says; ??? ???? - it came to his heart to
sing, the heart represents Moshe’s connection to Abraham and to Abraham’s act of
slicing the wood, in which merit the sea had split.
We say in the Shaharit of Shabbat; ???? ?? ??? ?????? , which literally means;
Hashem split the sea into sections. Twelve sections for the twelve tribes.
Another explanation of these words are: ???? ?? ??? - Hashem split the sea- ?????? - for
those who performed the Brit Milah (the word ??? means; to cut, referring to the cutting
of the Brit Milah). In the merit of the Brit Milah the sea split (even though in the
previous answer we said that it was in the merit of Abraham splitting the wood- the
Torah has many facets and all the explanations are true).
What is the special significance of the Misvah of Brit Milah that the sea split
because of it?
When Moshe approached the sea and commanded it to split, the sea refused. The
"argument" of the sea was that the sea was created by Hashem on the third day and
man was created on the sixth day. So the sea was "telling" Moshe I am older than you!
Therefore I do not have to listen to you. This argument is rebuffed by the Brit Milah,
since the Brit Milah signifies the fact that when we were born we were not "complete",
and we still needed something to be done to our bodies in order to make us holy. We
are actually on a higher level a few days after we are born- after the Brit Milah. This
shows us the concept that sometimes later is better than earlier (since the Brit Milah is
performed a few days after birth). This showed the sea that just because you came
into existence before us, does not mean that we have to listen to you!
This idea is also illustrated in a story in the Gemarah about Rabbi Akivah. Rabbi
Akivah was asked by Turnus Rufus which is better, what Hashem does or what we do?
Rabbi Akivah responded; what we do. Since for example, when Hashem makes the
wheat grow it indeed is a miracle. However what are we supposed to do with stalks of
wheat?! However after man processes the wheat he ends up with a delicious jelly
doughnut! Rabbi Akivah was explaining that actions which happen later are more
This is what it means when Moshe was asking Hashem to choose someone else to
lead the Jews out of Egypt: ??? ?? ??? ???? - "send them with whom you will send
them". He was really referring to Rabbi Akivah, since Rabbi Akivah represented this
concept that "later is better" and he would be able to answer the sea’s claim, however
Moshe was born ???? (he was born with his Brit Milah already done). In his case there
was no situation of a Milah showing later is better, since Moshe did not need a Brit
Milah on the eighth day- since he was born with it already done. In the end, the sea
saw the Brit Milah of all the people ???? ?? ??? ?????? - and in that ???? it split.
The word in the Torah that describes the Misvah of Brit Milah in ???? and the ???????
(Aramaic translation) for ???? is ???? (and he cut). The word ???? hints to the fact that the
sea split in the merit of Milah. The first two letters are ' ? and ' ?' .? is 6 and ' ? is 3 ,this
hints to the confrontation between what was created on the 3rd day- the sea- and what
was created on the 6th day- man. When the sea saw the Brit Milah, it split and we sang
?? ???? . The last letters of ?? ???? are ' ? and ' ?. These are the last two letters of .????
The ??????? is hinting to fact that the sea split in the merit of the Mitzvah of Brit Milah.
"?? ????? ????"
The word ??? alludes to a deep message. It says in Tehilim "??? ??? ?? ??? ????? ??
???? ?? ???" - "the foolish one doesn’t understand this". What is meant by the word -???
this? The ' ? of ??? is 7, the number seven represents ??? - nature, the 7 days of the
week etc… The letters ?-? of ??? represent the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet ?
thru ?. Hashem created the world with these letters, for example, to create the sun,
Hashem "took" a ' ? then a ' ? than another ' ?,- that spell ??? -put them together and
created a sun. The same way with all of creation. The ?? of the word ??? represents
Hashem creating and controlling everything in the world. That is why David Hamelech
wrote ????? ?? ???? ?? ??? - the fool doesn’t understand the ?? from the word ??? , he
thinks that everything is nature and not being controlled by Hashem ?''? . He only knows
of the ' ?- nature, not the ?? . By the splitting of the sea, Hashem’s glory and control of
every element in the world was so clear that the Pasuk says ?? ????? ???? ; the ??
was clearly part of the ??? . The fact that Hashem runs the world and that he is
controlling nature was crystal clear when the sea split.
?? ????? ???? the word ???? is feminine ???? , why did the Torah use a feminine
term rather than the word ??? which is the masculine term that is normally used ? One
answer is that feminine terminology is like a female which reproduces so it’s a
recurring term, since ?? ???? is recurring in that we say it every day; the Torah chooses
a ???? of .????
On a deeper level the Torah specifically chose the word ???? instead of ??? since it
wanted to teach us the reason why we left Egypt. It says in the Pasuk " "?????? ???? ??
"Hashem has in store for his beloved one’s" the Rabbis explain from this Pasuk that in
the future every Sadik will receive 310 "worlds"- ?? ?????? - as a reward for serving
Hashem. Since ?? ( which equals 310) is the same letters as ?? . Why do the Rabbis
refer to the amount of worlds as ?? ?????? ? Why not use the same terminology as the
Pasuk and call them ??? ??????
The Rabbis are hinting to the method that the 310 worlds are acquired.
The Pasuk says " ?? ?? ???? ????? ??? " this Pasuk speaks about the value of ???? and
???? . The last 2 letters of ?? ???? are ?-? .The last two letters of ???? ??? are ?-? (the
same letters as ?-? just reversed). The ' ? is spelled ??? and the ' ? is spelled ?? . The
last letters of ??? and ?? are ' ?'-? . We now notice a certain "interchangeability" between
the letters ?? and ?? , in the same respect we also find the letters ?? (last letters of ????
??? ) interchangeable with ?? (since the last letter of ?? is ' ? and the last letter of ??? is ' .(?
The last letters of ?? ???? ????? ??? is now like ?? -?? . The Rabbis specifically said ??
?????? instead of ?? because they wanted to hint to the Pasuk of ?? ???? ????? ???
since ?? ???? is like the letters ?? . Only through ???? ????? can a Jew reach the level to
receive 310 worlds.
The word ???? contains these four letters ??-?? which as spelled, allude to the first
two words of the Pasuk ?? ???? ????? ??? , (since there last letters- ?? - are synonymous
with ?? ; spelling ???? ) .The word ???? backwards is ???? , which alludes to the last 2
words of the Pasuk; ???? ??? , (since ?? is synonymous with .(??
The Torah specifically uses the word ???? to give us the secret of how to obtain
these special 310 worlds and to show us the reason why were freed from Egypt; to
serve Hashem through Torah and Misvot.

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Parashat Ki Tisa- The Sanctity of Every Jew
Purim and the Sale of Yosef
Parashat Terumah- The Torah’s “Footsteps”
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