Sunday, December 24, 2017
Ecclesiastes: The illusion of vanity and the reality of love (XXX)
“This also have I seen as wisdom under the sun, and it seemed great unto me: There was a little city and few men within it, and there came a great king against it, and besieged it, and built great bulwarks against it. Now there was found in it a man poor and wise, and he by his wisdom delivered the city; yet no man remembered that same poor man. Then I said that wisdom is better than strength, nevertheless the poor man’s wisdom is despised and his words are not heard.”
This story illustrates in its allegories the central message of Kohelet. We can understand the city as our consciousness, frequently besieged by the power that negative traits and trends can have over us, all coming from ego’s driving force which is represented by the invading king. The deliverer of the city is goodness that is its natural ruler, for both belong to each other.
Interestingly, Kohelet presents “poor” and “wise” as complementing traits, understanding the former as the humbleness inherent in goodness. Our sages consider humbleness an intellectual quality, necessary to acquire wisdom as the means to grasp God’s Torah for humankind in general, and Israel in particular as the chosen inheritor to disseminate such instruction.
The main question in the story is how the poor wise man delivered the city from the king and his army. The answer is persuasion. The story makes evident that the poor wise man didn’t have an army or weapons to defeat the king, so the power of wisdom causes the deliverance.
Wisdom usually unfolds by contrasting itself from ignorance in order to bring it back to understanding, as the light dissipates darkness and turn it into part of the light.
Thus we understand that darkness is the previous condition that makes sense to light. The same works for good and evil, for the latter is the reason for the former to exist.
The purpose of goodness is to transform evil by extracting the goodness concealed in it, for evil can’t exist without goodness.
Once we are exposed to the effects and consequences of the negative traits and trends of ego’s fantasies and illusions, we come to the realization that evil is not a choice but a reference to choose goodness. In this awareness we realize that the “persuasion” of the poor wise man is the educational process that takes modifying or transforming the negative traits and trends that submit our consciousness to their destroying effects and consequences.
The story tells us that ultimately the poor wise man was forgotten, ignored and even despised. Such is the fate of goodness in the playing ground of ego’s fantasies and illusions.
As soon as we realize that coming back to goodness brings us the long yearned freedom, and return momentarily to its ways and attributes, we go back to the addictive nature of negative trends and trends.
Hence Kohelet concludes that living in such vicious circle is vanity and vexation of the spirit that sustains life.
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.