Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Healing Hand

Now that I have begun creating hiddur mitzvah - a beautiful object that enlivens ones bonding with divinity - it has been my deep request to be the vehicle for such an object that would address my own need to be a participant in restoring the ripping fabric of this world that we are all witnessing at this moment.  My request was answered on the fourteenth day (Yud Dalet) of the counting of the Omer, just short of two weeks ago. I clearly understood that I was to make a votive candle setting with a hand. 

The words I was to place upon the hand I have known since I was a little child. They come from one of the myriad versions of Henai Ma Tov.  This particular version has a Klezmer feel, is a call and response punctuated with a fast chorus. The words of the chorus are: Ve'al yidai zeh yushpa shefa rav - "by means of this (hand) is caused to flow a great Supernal flowing."  I never knew where those words came from and never saw them written.  Over the years I have tried to find their source with no luck.  Nevertheless, these words sang to me and became the theme of a mezzuzah I created for my own door. That mezzuzah is also inscribed with the Arabic word "shifa" which means "healing." What an elegant confluence of meanings from the same 3-letter root. This instruction for this setting however, precluded the use any Arabic, which frankly left me bewildered about the meaning of this assignment.

It's been a few years since my last search so I gave Google another shot, and this time struck a gusher!  An off-hand reference was made to the source of the words, which I followed to the very end of the counting of the Omer.  I don't know if it is in all siddurim but it was in mine (Siddur Rinat Yisrael, Nusach S'fard):

"...And by means of this (hand) there is caused to flow a Great Supernal Flowing in all the Worlds. To repair the 3 aspects of our human souls: Nefesh (Vital Life Energy), Ruach (The Motivating Spirit), and Neshama (Divine Spark), from all dross and scar and to cleanse us and make us holy by means of Your Supernal Holiness.   Amen, Selah."

" all the worlds" - yes, the 4 cosmological worlds of Atzilut, Briah, Yetzirah and Asiah, but I'm thinking of the worlds both personal and public, physical and spiritual of politics, emotion, inter-personal relations, bio-sphere, finance, family ... ALL the worlds that need to be washed clean.

"To repair our own Nafshotainu, Ruchotanu and Neshmotainu" from scum and scar so that we can, each of us,  evolve into true humans, reflective of the holiness of which we are made.

Yes, let us rally in front of the offices of our congressmen, join the resistance, but also light a candle for the inner transformation that will make the ultimate difference in the future of the "worlds" and this planet.

Tikkun Olamot - "Restoration of the Worlds":

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