Monday, November 28, 2016

The Song of Songs: The Love Story of God and Israel (XV)

“Go forth and gaze, you daughters of Zion, on king Solomon with the crown that his mother crowned him in his wedding day, and in the day of his heart's joy.” (3:11)

Israel's love for God compels her to summon her highest positive qualities (the daughters of Zion) in the King whom peace belongs. We look forward to God's love as our true essence and identity, for His love is the crown of His motivation (in this case the “mother”) to make possible His entire creation.

God's love becomes manifest in His creation as His crown, by which we learn of His dominion over all that exists. Thus we also realize that our love and God's love are bound since the day He revealed Himself to us in His giving of the Torah. This is the day of His wedding that makes His heart joyful. In that day God saw Israel's love for Him as an eternal destiny full of joy and endless delight.

“You are beautiful, My love, you are beautiful. Your eyes are doves from behind your veil. Your hair is like a flock of goats shinning forth from mount Gilead. Your teeth are like a flock well counted, that have come up from washing. All of which are perfect and there is no blemish in them. Like a thread of scarlet are your lips, and your speech is comely. Like a slice of pomegranate are your temples from behind your veil. Like the tower of David is your neck built for an armory, a thousand shields are hung upon it, all quivers of the mighty. Your two breasts are like two fawns, twins of a gazelle that fed among the roses. Until the day breaks forth and the shadows have fled away, I will get Me to the mountain of myrrh, and to the hill of frankincense.” (4:1-6)

The first six verses of this chapter, and most in the Song of Songs are an exultation and praise of the bond of Israel's love and God's love. As we have mentioned many times, this bond is symbolized by the Temple of Jerusalem.

Beauty, love, more beauty, doves, veil and hair refer here to the decorations of the Tabernacle and its inner chamber. Goats and sheep that shine while descending from a mount are the offerings Israel elevates to the Creator. These animals represent the positive vital qualities that follow as a flock the voice and staff of the Shepherd of Israel.

“The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not lack (...)”, “Know that the Lord He is God. Is He who made us, we are His, His people, and the flock of His pasture (...)” (Psalms 23:1, 100:3)

Thus we realize that the offerings brought to the Temple indeed represent our readiness and willingness to elevate the best in us up to God. They also reflect our good will, gratitude and peace we enjoy in our closeness to His love. These traits are fundamental qualities of humbleness as the premise to come before our Creator.

We can compare humbleness to nothingness, as emptiness from anything contrary to goodness. Certainly nothingness is a complex concept to grasp and, depending on what we understand, there are several ways to learn from it. Another way to understand nothingness is as absence or non-existence, in the same way that black is the absence of color. Likewise nothingness, in spite of itself, is still considered “something” named nothingness as a conceptual reference to define quality, quantity or value. Due to its lack of value, quality or purpose, nothingness factually doesn't exist.

In the context of God's creation from nothingness to something which is and has a function and purpose, we may understand nothingness as an unfathomable abstraction that only God knows, for everything comes from Him including the non-factual existence of nothingness. Thus we realize that “all that is” has a purpose for the reason that it comes from the goodness of God's love (see above, Psalms 136:1, 33:5).

Our sages suggest that one who desires to live and conduct himself in God's ways must “nullify” (empty himself) from what is not Godlike. As we have remarked often, every aspect, level and dimension of consciousness are vessels we must keep void of anything different than God's ways and attributes.

This precondition refers to removing ego's materialistic illusions and their negative tendencies in order to fill the vessels with traits and qualities of the goodness God wants us to be, have and manifest, and make it prevail in the world. God created these vessels to complement each other and expressing themselves as a functional harmonic unity, in consonance with the oneness of God's love. Thus we become united in God. 

The Tabernacle and the Temple of Jerusalem are compared to a graceful woman adorned with the beauty of her goodness, manifest in Israel's identity. Goodness is the expression of Israel's love and God's love as the “twin” complementary nature of God's ways and attributes, and Israel's purpose and mission in the world.

The “voice” of God as His love comes as sweet and beautiful as His commandments, similar to the seeds in a pomegranate, coming from the inner chamber of the Temple. Their inherent goodness is also the protective shield of a tower of strength that nurtures and sustains the positive expressions in life. The duality as “twin” mentioned in these verses represent God's will and Israel's purpose as two breasts, two fawns, two gazelles grazing in the encompassing ways and attributes of God's love for Israel, His espouse.

In this union God reveals the promise of His final redemption, eternal as an endless day that breaks forth forever without darkness, for shadows fled away. In this awareness, Israel enters the unity and oneness of God's love in the Tabernacle, the Temple in the mountain where she brings herself as an offering to Him.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

The Song of Songs: The Love Story of God and Israel (XIV)

“I have adjured you, daughters of Jerusalem, by gazelles or hinds of the field. If you stir or arouse the love until it pleases.” (3:5)

God does not impose His will on Israel and on humankind, for He gave them free will to choose either love's ways and attributes or ego's fantasies and illusions. Hence He also warns our highest traits and qualities (the daughters of Jerusalem) not to force their goodness on the aspects and dimensions (intellect, mid, emotions, feelings, passion and instinct) that comprise human consciousness.

There is another reference to gazelles and hinds as symbols of delicate and sublime qualities that constitute our common bond with God. He wants our conscious self to return to His ways and attributes by our own desire and volition. Thus we realize that our relationship with Him is built through a learning process, based on the experiences we have with the choices we make.

“Who is she that ascends from the desert like columns of smoke, perfumed with myrrh and frankincense, of every powder of the merchant? Behold, it is the couch of Solomon [the couch of He whose peace belongs]. Sixty mighty ones are around it, of the mighty of Israel. All of them holding sword, learned in warfare, each with his sword on his thigh, because of the fear in the nights. A sedan chair has king Solomon [has the King whose peace belongs] made onto him [onto Himself], of wood from the Lebanon. He made its pillars of silver, its coverings were gold, its seat purple, its midst lined with love.” (3:6-10)

This verse and the following (3:7-10) make reference to the Temple of Jerusalem as the place shared by God and Israel. The scents mentioned represent the most sublime human qualities that ascend to bond with God's ways and attributes. The inner chamber is the dwelling of the peace that belongs to Him, the holy of hollies.

The sixty men are an allegory of the enhanced or elevated character traits that build and protect our reaching out for God's love as their Creator. There is an inherent human factor that makes possible the connection and bond with Him.

This human factor is love as the motivator to reach out to God's love. These character traits must be guided and directed into the positive ways and means of love's attributes, in order to become an essential part of Israel's spiritual and material identity.

These are the “mighty ones of Israel” as the best of human qualities. These are the principles, values and foundations that stand strong to protect our ways to approach the material world, and to confront and overcome the darkness (“the fear in the nights”) of negative beliefs, ideologies, ideas, thoughts, emotions, feelings, speech and actions. Their swords are the truth of love's ways and attributes as the expressions and purpose of God's will and commandments.

Our highest level of consciousness in regards to the permanent awareness of our connection with God (represented by the Temple of Jerusalem) is what He has made for Him to dwell with us. Israel builds the Temple with the pillars of her utmost traits and qualities. These columns are mentioned as trees grown in the courtyard of the Temple.

As we have mentioned, the Lebanon (lit. white or whitened) is another name for the Temple of Jerusalem, because of its power to transform blackness into whiteness, and darkness into light, besides the shinning white light coming from it.

Wood of Lebanon refers to the trees that adorn the Temple's courtyard, allegorically representing the strongest principles and values that beautify it. They also symbolize the wise men from whom we learn such fundamental values and principles of Judaism. The internal decorations of the Tabernacle are mentioned as the goodness and beauty of the ways and means of God's love, shared by Israel's loving traits represented by the daughters of Jerusalem or Zion.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

The Song of Songs: The Love Story of God and Israel (XIII)

“I will rise now and roam around the city, through the streets and through the squares, I will seek the One my soul loves. I sought Him, but I found Him not.” (Song of Songs 3:2)

In the darkness as Israel's choice to live in ego's fantasies and their negative trends, she tries to seek God, assuming that His ways and attributes share the same realm of her choice, and she doesn't find Him. Even if she tries to elevate her consciousness in the darkness of materialistic desires and illusions, represented by cities, streets and market places, she realizes that God's ways and attributes don't dwell with negative traits.

“The watchmen who circle the city found me. Have you seen Him whom my soul loves?” (3:3)

The watchmen who circle the city represent evil beliefs and ideologies from which negative traits and trends derive. In the same way there are high ethical and moral principles that watch over their positive qualities, there are lower negative tendencies that dominate and encircle their evil outcome.

Israel says that these patrolmen found her in their domains, and she inquires from them about her Beloved and protector she is not able to find in their midst. Israel reaffirms her longing and desire to go as far as even asking those traits and trends where her Beloved is not found.

“Scarcely had I passed them when I found Him whom my soul loves. I seized Him, and I would not let Him leave until I brought Him to my mother's house, and to the chamber of her who conceived me.” (3:4)

Here Israel became aware that she can find her Beloved only by passing over ego's fantasies and illusions, and their negative trends. Only in this complete awareness we can come to be one with our Creator and His love. Then we are able to “seize” Him and “not let Him leave”.

This oneness is fully realized in the permanent bond and connection with God's love, which are represented by the Temple of Jerusalem as “the house of my mother”. The mother is from whom one is born and acquires his/her existence and identity, including the traits, qualities and attributes that define them both.

This mother in particular is Jerusalem as the connecting and bonding time and space between Israel and God. Jerusalem literally means “I will see peace”, and implies where God shall appear or shall be seen.

Peace and seeing our Creator are one single occurrence. We as God's people are born for this purpose and destiny. This awareness is indeed our mother, for we are conceived to be and live in His peace under His love.

We have to reiterate and emphasized that peace encompasses attributes and qualities, including completion, wholesomeness, unity, harmony, balance and totality.

Peace implies the stillness of a perfect balance in order to function as a harmonic unity for the transcendental divine purpose of knowing the unrevealed God’s presence in His creation. This kind of peace is the foundation of the Messianic consciousness destined to reign eternally.

Bringing God to our mother also means to make His ways and attributes lead and every aspect, level and dimension of life. We bring Him to dwell permanently in our highest level of consciousness where He is enthroned and crowned not only as the sole ruler of Israel's identity but as the One and only ruler of His creation. This highest level is the place of the soul that constantly yearns for her Creator.

The soul's purpose is to give direction and meaning to life. Thus we understand the principle that the soul is pure intellect, as a divine quality in human consciousness that discerns and establishes the moral imperative to make prevail goodness as God's will for the world, for the soul gives us the awareness of His presence in us.

This pure intellect has full knowledge and experience of the goodness of love as an encompassing and integrating principle, destined to unify the complexities of diversity in all levels and dimensions of consciousness and their expressions in all facets of life.

Hence we are born to live and experience such principle, by adequately using free will as the means to execute the discernment of intellect also as the guiding trait of the soul to make goodness lead and direct all aspects of life.

“The lamp of God is the soul of man, searching all the rooms of the innards.” (Proverbs 20:27)

We can understand this verse as a two-fold statement. On one side, the soul as the means for God to reveal His presence in the material world, for the light of goodness comes from Him.

“(…) And God saw the light, that is good.” (Genesis 1:4)

Hence the soul is the lamp of God to enlighten life in the material world with goodness. On the other side, the soul searches all the rooms of the innards as goodness looking forward to occupy all aspects and dimensions of human consciousness.

The purpose of the soul as absolute goodness is to express itself while directing our mind, thoughts, emotions, feelings, passion and instinct. Thus the soul fulfills God’s will to be His lamp. This invites us to reflect on the soul as our essence and true identity, with its qualities, ways, means and attributes; and its expressions in human life.

Thus we will understand the ways body and soul relate to each other, in order to complement each other with the purpose to make goodness conduct all aspects and dimensions of life.

We are born with the potential to achieve this principle, for it is the reason and the purpose of our existence in the material world. Yet, our free will must make that choice. Thus we realize that humankind not just has the potential to subjugate and redirect negative traits and trends, but also the potential to manifest only goodness in all expressions of life.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

The Song of Songs: The Love Story of God and Israel (XII)

“Upon my bed in the nights I sought the One I love. I sought Him, and I found Him not.” (Song of Songs 3:1)

As we have seen, the nights represent not only negative traits and trends but also their outcome. By simple association, we can't enjoy the goodness of life in the midst of evil, for love does not dwell with anything different from its ways and attributes.

In this context, we are not able to find the redeeming blessings of God's love in the deep sleep of ego's fantasies and illusions. The latter belong to the realm of the “nights” where we suffer their destructive predicament.

We understand this situation as if God's love is hidden from us. God's infinite loving kindness and compassion never cease to sustain His entire creation! It's similar to imagine that He would remove the air from us. We are the ones who hide from God's love by choosing ego's materialistic desires instead of the goodness of love's ways and attributes. Hence we have to realize that the ways of goodness do not cohabit with negative ways. This verse may suggest abandonment and weariness, and these are the result of our separation from God's ways.

Goodness is the seed we plant in every positive action, and a lifestyle of goodness is its harvest. Hence we must rejoice more in the harvest than in the seed, yet the seed will be always more precious for being the primary cause of the goodness in which we rejoice. Likewise, God rejoices more in the harvest of His works.

Goodness is the cause and the purpose of God’s creation, as it is written, “And God saw everything that He had made; and behold, very good.” (Genesis 1:31). Thus we understand that we were created by the goodness of God’s love in order to manifest goodness as a divine destiny we only can transgress by choosing to reject it. We do this knowing that evil exists not as an option but only as a reference for us to choose goodness.

Israel is commanded to be, have and do goodness in order to fulfill her destiny as “the light unto the nations”. Here we also see the goodness inherent to light, as the Creator points it out, “And God saw the light, that [is] good” (Ibid. 1:4). Hence being, having and doing goodness are the means to show humankind the path to return to God; for goodness is man's common bond with Him.

Thus we must face and defeat adversities and obstacles through the strength of the goodness in us, by bringing out the best in us. The material world (the earth) is destined to reflect the spiritual world (the heavens), for the former is sustained by the latter. As we just mentioned, God is the source and sustenance of all that is and His goodness pervades all His creation.

“The loving kindness of the Lord fills all the earth.” (Psalms 33:5)

We can understand this by realizing that God’s goodness already fills the material world, which implies that it is our job to see goodness and reveal it when we don’t see it. This means that when we are in places or situations where we don’t see goodness, we are commanded to make it manifest, in order to fulfill our destiny to be the light for the nations. Thus we understand goodness as the light to dissipate the darkness of negative traits and trends in consciousness.

We also understand this as the imperative to make reflect in the material world the goodness inherent to the highest realms of God’s creation we know as the heavens. This is the premise to enter the final redemption and the merit to live, to behold, and to inherit the goodness and blessing of the Messianic era and the life in the world to come.

Thus we engage in a lifetime process of constant change through refining all levels and dimensions of consciousness to achieve their complete functional harmonic unity known as peace. We have referred to peace as a multidimensional all-encompassing quality that integrates completeness, wholesomeness and totality.

We call it functional because it implies a purpose. It is the prelude, the preceding state or precondition to approach unfathomable works and wonders of the spiritual world that reflects God’s perfection.

The objective is to overcome and transcend ego’s fantasies and illusions along with their negative traits and trends, and serve God’s will through love’s attributes as the sources of goodness and the leading means and qualities of the Messianic era. These direct us to the light God’s love saved for the righteous that make goodness their continuous expression, for only goodness permeates the Messianic consciousness.

The encompassing, integrating, unifying and harmonizing qualities of love’s ways bring completion to the material world. Thus we fulfill our part of the covenant with the Creator of all.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

The Song of Songs: The Love Story of God and Israel (XI)

“My Beloved is mine, and I am His, Who is delighting among the roses until the day does break forth and the shadows have fled away. Turn, my Beloved, and be as a deer, or as a young one of the harts upon the mountains of separation.” (2:16-17)

We read another sweet love declaration between God and Israel, charged with wholesomeness, totality and completeness as infinity and eternity are. This is a love relationship that extends beyond time and space. It transcends what we are able to fathom, conceive or comprehend. Hence Israel must realize what all this represent in terms of her identity as Jewish individuals and as the Jewish nation.

The key to approach and assimilate that identity is to understand God's ways and attributes, and how He relates to all His creation out of His love. For love is the center, the basis and foundation of all He has created for the sake of His love. As we grasp the scope of God's love, we become aware of our love for Him and His love for us.

The mutual love between God and Israel has a purpose in human life and in the world. As Israel creates a space in the world (beginning with our own consciousness) for God to dwell in our midst, He also reveals His presence to us to enter the transcendence of His love.

Thus we also become aware that God is ours and we are His, as His love and our love belong to each other. In order to fully assimilate this, we first must find the essence of our love as an extension of God's love. As we do this, we will be able to truly know how to love God.

This is the beginning of our final redemption. In this sense, reciprocity is fundamental in our relationship with God. He constantly manifests His love to us in many ways, beginning with the air we breathe. Then we are destined to reciprocate by emulating and honoring the best we can the abundant loving kindness of His ways and attributes. Thus we love Him back.

This mutual love allegorically delights among the roses as the beauty and fragrance of love's ways and attributes, which are the complements of God's ways and attributes destined to rule and prevail in all humankind and the world for the eternity to come. This is the foundation of the Messianic era after the remains of the day as our materialistic fantasies and illusions are left behind along with their darkness.

Again, God invites Israel to fully assume her true identity, represented by the allegorical deer and hart mentioned earlier in this song, and meet her Beloved in the divided mountain. This refers to two separated mountains that split from the mountain as it is literal in the original Hebrew in the last part of the final verse in this chapter: “upon the mountains of the mountain”.

“The mountain” or “the mount” is the common symbol for Zion and the Temple of Jerusalem, mentioned by the Jewish prophets in regards to God's promised final redemption: “And redeemers ascended to the mountain of Zion to judge the mount of Esau, and the kingdom has been to the Lord's.” (Obadiah 1:21)

There are two mountains as the split duality in our current human consciousness, reflected in the constant confrontation of good and evil for the control of the expressions in life. This confrontation will cease when the redeeming power of God's love will be revealed to Israel in front of the nations.

This empowered redeeming love will manifest in the renewed strength of the positive traits and trends in consciousness that will wipe out all form of evil from the face of the earth. Those will be the redeemers that will ascend to the mountain of Zion to judge (rectify and direct) the mountain of Esau.

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.