Beginning In the Beginning

Artists Mel and Miriam Alexenberg celebrated their 52nd year of marriage by collaborating on the "Torah Tweets" blogart project. During each of the 52 weeks of their 52nd year, they posted six photographs reflecting their life together with a tweet text that relates the weekly Torah reading to their lives.

Unlike the biblical narrative that begins “In the Beginning,” a blog begins at the end. A blog displays its narrative in reverse chronological order with the most recent post appearing first. This blog was created to reverse the order of the blog posts in the “Torah Tweets” blog to begin in the beginning.

The Alexenbergs invite other couples, individuals, and families to join them celebrating their lives through creating their own spiritual blog.


Friday, January 24, 2014

Leviticus 8: Higher Than Sky

Kedoshim/Holy (Leviticus 19:1-20:27)

For 3 years the fruit shall be forbidden to you, they shall not be eaten. In the 4th year, all its fruit shall be holy to praise God. And in the 5th year, you may eat its fruit and thus increase your crop. (Leviticus 19:23-25)

While in Crete, we studied the Lubavitcher Rebbe's explanation that the fruit of a tree's first 4 years correspond to 4 worlds of being:
From the material world of Action, affective world of Formation, cognitive world of Creation, up to the holy spiritual world of Emanation.

However, the 5th year when the fruit can be eaten anywhere by anyone is the highest level, higher than holiness that transcends the world.
Action (Asiyah) is our everyday world of ice-cream delivery trucks, motor scooters and merry-go-round horses. (We took all 6 photos in Crete.) 

Formation (Yetzirah) is the world of our feelings and emotions that manipulate our strings like many dangling Pinocchio marionettes.
Creation (Beriah) is the creative world of mind, of fresh insights, of deepening understanding, and of growing knowledge.

Emanation (Atzilut) is a holistic world in which divine light is revealed in transcendent realms.
The highest level is when we draw divine light down into our everyday world creating delicious deserts from the 5th year fruits.

When a skeptic heard Hasidim telling of their rebbe's ascent to heaven, he discreetly trailed him as he left the synagogue and walked home.
He saw him emerge from his home in workman's clothes with an ax in his belt and a rope draped over his shoulder.

The rebbe chopped down a small tree, cut off its branches and tied them in a bundle that he brought into a shack at edge of the village.
Peering in a window, the skeptic saw a frail old woman.  The rebbe put wood in her stove, cooked up a pot of stew and scrubbed the floor.

When the Hasidim told ecstatically about their rebbe's return from heaven, the skeptic added, "If not higher than that!"

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