Posted by: mosesfromsinai | June 6, 2011

Biha’aloscha – When You Will Light

This week’s Torah reading is Biha’aloscha (“When you will light” – the Menorah).

We just recently celebrated the giving of the Torah at Mt. Sinai.  What do we do with it?  Certainly the Torah has many functions but this week’s Parsha spells out one major role.

The Torah was given to bring light into the entire world just as the Menorah was lit to bring light into the entire world.  (The windows in the Temple were built to emphasize the light of the Menorah shinning outward – narrow on the inside and wide on the outside.)

Note that the Torah states Biha’aloscha (When you will light – not –  If you will light.)  Each one possesses a Holy soul (Aaron the Kohen) and we have an obligation to bring light into the world, so it is not “If” but “When”.  The Menorah was kindled daily so each day we have an obligation to do something that brings a positive light into the world.

One fast comment on the way the Torah reading ends.  The story of Miriam being punished for speaking Loshon Hara (Gossip).  It sounds like a real negative to end the Parsha with.  However, it actually ends with the statement that the entire Jewish nation did not travel further until she was healed out of respect for Miriam.  It was Miriam that played a central role in bringing light into the dark exile while the Jews were in Egypt.  (She told her father to remarry Yocheved and ignore the Egyptian decree to kill the boy children that were born – the birth of Moshe was the end result)   It was Miriam that helped sustain the Jews during their wanderings in the wilderness providing water – a true life saver.  (The rock that miraculously provided water for 40 years in the desert was in Miriam’s merit.)   They were not going anywhere without Miriam.


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