Sunday, May 25, 2014
Our Torah and Jewish Prophets refer to life in the material world as a moral imperative, meaning that life must be experienced within the frame of goodness, for goodness is the cause and purpose of life. Time and again they remind us of the law of cause and effect as our guideline to conduct life. Hence we realize that Love's ways and attributes transcend ego's fantasies and illusions as well as negative trends in consciousness.
In this context we understand Love's ways as our redeemers from their opposite qualities. Thus we conclude that our Final Redemption is the time when all that is positive will prevail forever. As our Prophets tells us, evil will be wiped out from the face of the Earth; and this include every aspect and dimension of our consciousness.
“Woe to you who destroy, but you weren't destroyed; and who betray, but nobody betrayed you! When you have finished destroying, you will be destroyed; and when you have made an end of betrayal, you will be betrayed.”(Isaiah 33:1)
God tells us through the Prophet that sooner or later we end up trapped by the outcome of our negative traits, trends and actions, even if we think that doing evil does not affect us immediately or directly. King David also reminds us this: “Evil puts to death the wicked, and those hating the righteous are desolate.” (Psalms 34:22).
Our own evil destroys us, as we realize that our desolation is the result of our separation from what is right, positive, constructing and liberating. These are also traits and qualities of Love's ways and attributes.
“Lord, be gracious to us. We have waited for you. Be our strength every morning, our salvation also in the time of trouble.” (Isaiah 33:2)
In our fantasies and illusions we learn and recognize that freedom comes with our return to the Creator. We wait for Him in the darkness we have made our dwelling. We know that in the Light (referred here as “every morning”) we find our strength. Light as the goodness that saves us in “times of trouble” (darkness we translate as our captivity by negative trends in consciousness).
“At the noise of the tumult [coming out of God's voice] the people fled, at the lifting up of Yourself the nations are scattered.” (33:3)
The Prophet tells us that -- as expected -- there will be unrest and tension when we make the choice to free ourselves from the darkness of envy, lust, wrath, pride, greed, indifference, indolence and negative trends to which we become addicted, attached and dependent. There will be a major struggle to overcome the withdrawal symptoms, after “the noise of the tumult” comes from God's Love to liberate us, when we cry out up to Him for our Final Redemption.
As we elevate our consciousness up to the goodness God wants to make prevail in His Creation, He will disperse the obstacles (“the nations”) that have kept us in captivity. Here the Prophet refers to the tumult as the result of God's Love to redeem us, the moment we choose to return to His ways and attributes.
“Your spoil will be gathered as the caterpillar gathers. Men will leap on it as locusts leap.” (33:4)
In this metaphor our gains are far greater than our loses after we come out of ego's fantasies and illusions. Indeed we only win when we live in the goodness of God's ways and attributes. Therefore we come out richer with all we have learned from the ordeals and suffering we have brought into our lives while living in darkness.
“The Lord is exalted, for He dwells on high. He has filled Zion with justice and righteousness.” (33:5)
We are able to praise our Creator only when realize that all comes from the justice and righteousness of His Love for His Creation. This realization only occurs in Zion as the permanent awareness of our connection with God. Hence we have to ascend to Him, by elevating all aspects, traits, qualities and dimensions of consciousness through Love's ways and attributes.
“And steadfastness in [Your] times is the strength of [Your] redemptions, wisdom, and knowledge. Fear [awesomeness] of the Lord is [man's] treasure.” (33:6)
Our faith (“steadfastness”) in God is the strength to hope for His redemptions, as well as the fruits of the wisdom and knowledge He gives us in the Torah. Thus we understand that all we find in the Creator is indescribably awesome, and His awesomeness is our treasure. Here again we translate “fear” as our reverence once we become aware that all comes from God.
The Prophet continues lamenting the fate of Israel (33:7-10), the Promised Land, Jerusalem and our Temple, while reiterating God's promise of His Final Redemption. Negative traits and trends in consciousness fear their end by the consequences of our wrong actions (33:11-14), while the positive traits enjoy the fruits of their deeds (33:15-19).
Sunday, May 18, 2014
“Rise up, ye women that are at ease, and hear my voice; ye confident daughters, give ear unto my speech. After a year and days shall ye be troubled, ye confident women; for the vintage shall fail, the ingathering [harvesting] shall not come.” (Isaiah 32:9-10)
Our Sages refer to women in this metaphor as the cities in Judea and Samaria that were about to be conquered and destroyed by Israel's enemies. Their inhabitants ignored the Prophet's warnings about their imminent doom. We can also understand these warnings referring to the aspects of consciousness that prefer being conquered and subjugated by negative trends represented by Israel's enemies. We rather hear their claims out of envy, lust, greed, pride, indifference, indolence and cruelty, than pursuing goodness as the destiny God wants for us.
“Tremble, ye women that are at ease; be troubled, ye confident ones; strip you, and make you bare, and gird sackcloth upon your loins. Smiting upon the breasts for the pleasant fields, for the fruitful vine; for the land of my people whereon thorns and briers come up; yea, for all the houses of joy and the joyous city.” (32:11-13)
As long as we remain under the rule of ego's fantasies and illusions we live trapped in trouble, without sowing anything good and uplifting. In our negative predicament there is no hope to be rescued and gathered back into God's ways and attributes as our true freedom and redemption. Life as the land become a field of thorns and briers, where joy and happiness are far from our midst.
“For the palace shall be forsaken; the city with its stir shall be deserted; the mound and the tower shall be for dens for ever, a joy of wild asses, a pasture of flocks; until the Spirit be poured upon us from on high, and the wilderness become a fruitful field, and the fruitful field be counted for a forest.” (32:14-15)
Before sending our Prophets, God warns us in the Torah (Deuteronomy) about the consequences of our estrangement from His ways and attributes, for it solely depends on us. Choosing the idols we make out of ego's fantasies, illusions, obsessions, attachments, addictions, and negative tendencies in consciousness is the premise to forsake our permanent connection with God. The latter, -- as we have said many times -- is represented by the Temple of Jerusalem. This is referred here as the “forsaken palace”, “deserted city”, “mound” and “tower” where “wild asses and flocks” enjoy themselves. These represent recklessness and lack of direction. Until we return to our Essence and true identity God's Love gave us, as the “Spirit poured upon us from high”.
We must understand this re-connection with God as our own individual and collective recognition of who we really are. Returning to our true identity is the beginning of our Final Redemption in “the ends of times”. As we have also mentioned frequently, this as well as “the day of God” represent the moment when we choose to return to our Creator and join Him to fulfill the assigned mission He commanded us in the Torah.
In this awareness we realize that being, having and doing goodness are the seeds, the field, the rain, and also the harvest. Love's ways and attributes are the goodness that turns barren and desolated fields (the negative traits and trends in consciousness) into fruitful fields, abundant as a forest.
“Then justice shall dwell in the wilderness, and righteousness shall abide in the fruitful field. And the work of righteousness shall be peace; and the effect of righteousness, quietness and confidence for ever. And my people shall abide in a peaceable habitation, and in secure dwellings, and in quiet resting places. And it shall hail, in the downfall of the forest; but the city shall descend into the valley.” (32:16-19)
God reminds us once more that justice and righteousness are the premises of our fruitfulness in every aspect and dimension of consciousness we reflect in every facet of life. For both are the foundations of loving kindness and compassion as essential qualities of Love's ways and attributes as the material manifestation of God's Love. Again we learn that by doing what is right we make peace prevail, for righteousness brings along our tranquility and confidence in what is good.
“Happy are ye that sow beside all waters, that send forth freely the feet of the ox and the ass.” (32:20)
By being and manifesting the goodness of Love's ways and attributes we live away from the unrest of ego's fantasies and illusions, and we conduct our thoughts, emotions and feelings (“all waters”) in which our passions and instincts (“the ox and the ass”) delight in total freedom. Thus they cooperate to prepare the field of life into sowing goodness to harvest goodness.
Sunday, May 11, 2014
"Behold, for righteousness does a king reign; as to princes, for judgment they rule." (Isaiah 32:1)
There is a quality in consciousness destined to rule all aspects and dimensions of life, that is our Essence and true identity from which God's Love created us. In practical terms, it is goodness as our common bond with God. This goodness is the king and also the righteousness with which it reigns. This is the quality that embodies the Messianic Consciousness to rule forever. The verse refers to a king and princes, but their common traits are righteousness and justice which God loves: "He loves righteousness and justice. The earth is full of the loving kindness of the Lord." (Psalms 33:5). In this context the princes and their judgments represent positive expressions of goodness as the righteous thing to do.
"And each has been as a hiding place from wind, and as a secret hiding place from inundation, as streams of waters in a dry place, as a shadow of a heavy rock in a thirsty land." (Isaiah 32:2)
Goodness as the common quality of Love's ways and attributes is the expression of righteousness and justice, which are our shelter from the turbulence of ego's fantasies and illusions. Doing goodness for the sake of goodness is the truth and shield that protect us from the avalanche of negative trends in consciousness. They are the streams of waters in the dry and thirsty places of a materialistic approach to life.
"And the eyes of them that see are not closed, and the ears of them that hear attend. The heart also of the rash shall understand knowledge, and the tongue of the stammers shall be ready to speak plainly." (32:3-4)
As long as we allow righteousness and justice as the expressions of Love's ways and attributes, our eyes see and our ears hear. This means that by being and doing goodness we know and we understand that goodness is the whole purpose of God's Creation, for God is good. Goodness makes us wise, and our speech and deeds are clear as our thoughts.
"A fool is no more called 'noble,' and to a miser it is not said, 'rich'. For the vile person will speak villainy, and his heart will work iniquity, to do ungodliness, and to utter wickedness against the Lord, leaving the soul of the hungry empty and taking away the drink of the thirsty." (32:5-6)
In goodness there are no fools or misers, for goodness fills our knowledge and makes us rich in its abundance. As long as we remain controlled by the lack inherent to ego's fantasies and illusions, their iniquities destroy the goodness we pursue in Love's ways and attributes. This destruction is the outcome of doing what is opposite to God's ways. Hence negative trends in consciousness are the ungodliness and wickedness against the goodness God wants us to live by and make prevail in all aspects and dimensions of life. Love's ways and attributes are the food and drink that satiate the hunger and thirst of our souls.
"And the miser, his instruments are evil, he has counselled wicked devices to corrupt the poor with lying sayings, even when the needy speaks justly. But a noble person plans noble things, he stands up for noble causes." (32:7-8)
The Prophet delivers God's words to make a clear distinction between good and evil, and their effects in our consciousness. Misery approaches life through lack, which invites envy, coveting, greed, pride and negative feelings that corrupt our soul's desire to live in the goodness from which it came. Our souls are the poor caught in the slavery of materialistic attachments, obsessions, addictions and negative patterns, as the lies that corrupt our consciousness. Goodness pursues goodness, and stands up for goodness as the expression of Love the material manifestation of God's Love.
Sunday, May 4, 2014
“Woe to them that go down to Egypt for help, and rely on horses, and trust in chariots, because they are many, and in horsemen, because they are exceeding mighty; but they look not unto the Holy One of Israel, neither seek the Lord!” (Isaiah 31:1)
The Prophet makes it clear by bringing up history also as an allegory. We rather pursued an alliance with Egypt against Babylon, instead of relying on our Covenant with God. Likewise, we prefer living in ego's fantasies and illusions than Love's ways and attributes. Horses, chariots and horsemen are the selfish sensual trends that seem to be mightier than our willingness to rely only on the individual and collective goodness. In our collective well being there is no lack that leads us to envy, pride, greed, wrath, indifference, indolence or cruelty. This individual and collective well being comes out of the goodness of God's ways and attributes, for God is good and we also come from His goodness.
“Yet He also is wise, and brings evil, and does not call back His words; but will arise against the house of the evil-doers, and against the help of them that work iniquity.” (31:2)
We are reminded time and again that the goodness of God's ways and attributes doesn't cohabit with anything different or opposite to them. Again we must understand that God “brings evil” as something we choose, and not brought by Him to punish the free will He gave us. We are punish by our own iniquities. The Prophet reiterates Psalmist's words: “And He has brought upon them [the evil doers] their own iniquity, and will cut them off in their own evil; the Lord our God will cut them off.” (Psalms 94:23). These are also references for the Messianic Era, in which the Creator will end the source of all evils, “the help of them that work iniquity”.
“Now the Egyptians are men, and not God, and their horses flesh, and not spirit; so when the Lord shall stretch out His hand, both he that helps shall stumble, and he that is helped shall fall, and they all shall perish together.” (Isaiah 31:3)
There is a distinction between the qualities of the spiritual world and the material world, as a reflection of our higher consciousness and lower consciousness. Between Love's ways and attributes, and ego's fantasies and illusions. Between goodness for the purpose of goodness, and negative trends with their consequences. It's remarked again that goodness overcomes the cause and the effect of evil, for God wants goodness to prevail in all aspects and dimensions of consciousness.
“For thus says the Lord unto me: Like as the lion, or the young lion, growling over his prey, though a multitude of shepherds be called forth against him, will not be dismayed at their voice, nor abase himself for the noise of them; so will the Lord of hosts come down to fight upon mount Zion, and upon the hill thereof.” (31:4)
God compares a lion's relentlessness to His determination to make goodness prevail in the material world. The Torah also compares Israel to a lion for the same reason: “Behold, the people [Israel] shall rise up as a great lion, and lift up themselves as a young lion: he shall not lie down until he eats of the prey, and drinks the blood of the slain.” (Numbers 23:24). This is also Israel's mission and destiny in the world, hence the Covenant between God and Israel.
The “multitude of shepherds” in this case represent the negative trends in consciousness, and ego's fantasies and illusions as their “noise”. The final confrontation of the devouring lion (as the prevailing goodness) and its prey (as evil in all its ways and expressions) takes place in the highest level of our consciousness, which is mount Zion as our permanent connection with God. In total awareness of goodness as our true identity and common bond with God, we have the power to remove all that is against Love's ways and attributes.
“As birds flying, so does the Lord of hosts cover over Jerusalem, covering and delivering, passing over, and redeeming.” (Isaiah 31:5)
God tells us again that He is our Creator, He sustains us, He protects us, and delivers us, for He is our freedom and He wants our freedom. Jerusalem is our meeting place, the bond and the connection, the awareness and the determination to be and manifest our Essence and true identity that come from His Love.
“Turn ye unto Him against whom ye have deeply rebelled, O children of Israel. For in that day they shall cast away every man his idols of silver, and his idols of gold, which your own hands have made unto you for a sin.” (31:6-7)
God asks our ancestors in the Torah to return to His ways, and through His Prophets He asks time and again: “From the days of your fathers you have turned aside from My ordinances, and have not kept them. 'Return to me, and I will return to you', says the Lord of hosts. But you say, 'How shall we return'?” (Malachi 3:7). We all know that our way back to Him is through Love's ways and attributes out of the goodness that is our common bond with His Love.
As we enthrone Love as the regent of all aspects and facets of life, there is no room for idols of any kind out of negative trends and ego's fantasies and illusions. These are the idols we create with our hands (actions) to transgress the goodness we are, and we are meant to manifest in life. When we finally realize that the only things we need to fulfill our destiny in this world are Love's ways and attributes, we shall cast away all that is different or opposite to their goodness.
“Then shall Asshur [Assyria] fall with the sword, not of man, and the sword, not of men, shall devour him; and he shall flee from the sword, and his young men shall become tributary.” (Isaiah 31:8)
Assyria is mentioned here as one of the invaders and oppressors of Israel, which also represents negative trends in consciousness that will be turned into positive traits and qualities; as natural tributaries of Love's ways and attributes. We must begin our individual and collective transition from what we don't need as fantasies and illusions, towards what we do need as Love's ways and attributes.
“And his [Asshur's] rock shall pass away by reason of terror, and his princes shall be dismayed at the ensign, says the Lord, whose fire is in Zion, and His furnace in Jerusalem.” (31:9)
We have said that our Sages frequently explain “fear” and “terror” as reverence and awe in certain contexts of the Hebrew Bible. Here the negative trends and tendencies surrender (in “dismay”) by recognizing goodness as the ensign of God's attributes, and submitting to His ways. These are the fire that is in Zion as our eternal bond to Him, and the furnace of His Love that dwells in Jerusalem as our permanent connection with Him.
God's Love is our Essence and identity, the spirit He puts in our lives, the breath that makes us understand and live by His ways and attributes.
“But it is a spirit in man, the breath of the Almighty makes them understand.” (Job 32:8)
From the Book's Foreword
Let's reexamine our ancestral memory, intellect, feelings, emotions and passions. Let's wake them up to our true Essence. Let us engage in the delightful awareness of Love as the Essence of G-d. The way this book is written is to reaffirm and reiterate its purpose, so it presents its message and content in a recurrent way. This is exactly its purpose, to restate the same Truth originally proclaimed by our Holy Scriptures, Prophets and Sages. Our purpose is to firmly enthrone G-d's Love in all dimensions of our consciousness, and by doing it we will fulfill His Promise that He may dwell with us on Earth forever. Let's discover together the hidden message of our ancient Scriptures and Sages. In that journey, let's realize Love as our Divine Essence, what we call in this book the revealed Light of Redemption in the Messianic era.