This week’s Jewish terminology word is: a person who has done great and mighty work for the Glory of the Only Living G-D HaShem Blessed be He…. Isaac ben Solomon Luria
Who was Isaac ben Solomon Luria and why is he considered such a valuable contributor to the Jewish Faith…… specifically the Hasidic movement? Well I am glad you asked!
Hasidic Judaism is an Orthodox spiritual revivalist movement that emerged in Eastern Europe in the 18th century. Followers of Hasidic Judaism (known as Hasidim, or “pious ones”) drew heavily on the Jewish mystical tradition in seeking a direct experience of God through ecstatic prayer and other rituals conducted under the spiritual direction of a Rebbe, a charismatic leader sometimes also known as a tzaddik, or righteous man.
Today we are going to go over our Jewish terminology for the week.
This weeks word is: Isaac ben Solomon Luria which actually is a person who lived from 1534 thru 1572 … only 42 years of life, but what a life he lived #thankyouHaShem!
I love, love, love , I mean love, history. I love and find and love to study people who have had a great deal done in their life. In general find people different than me… fascinating. Especially from other cultures of backgrounds. I love looking at others and seeing what an amazing G-D that I get the honor and privilege to serve.
My JPS Dictionary of Jewish Words by Joyce Eisenberg and Ellen Scolnic 2001 copyright 1st edition defines: Isaac ben Solomon Luria as: A Jerusalem-born kabbalist; also known as ha-Ari, “the (sacred) lion.” In 1570 Luria settled in Safed, Palestine, where he led an important school of mysticism and taught disciples his unique kabbalistic system, which came to ne known as Lurianic Kabbalah. His concepts of repairing the world (tikun olam) and identifying with the Divine spirit through intense concentration (kavanah) were influential on the Hasidic movement.
For a taste of Lurianic Kabbalah:
God Contracts the Divine Essence
In contrast to the mythological conceptions of early Kabbalah, which conceived of the initial theogonic [self-creative] activity as an outward act of emanation, Luria describes the first action of divinity as an inward one. Tzimtzum refers to the process by which the Godhead contracts its essence, so to speak, by retreating “from Himself into Himself,” abandoning a space in order to create an “empty” region.
[The explanation of this] step inward sought to solve the question of how the existence of the world is possible if divinity, which is Infinite, fills all space. The answer which Lurianic Kabbalah provides is that by an act of withdrawal, a space–infinitesimally small in comparison to God‘s infinity–is created in which all dimensions of existence can unfold.
My G-D truly is an awesome G-D!
I have not been around the world, but……..!
After being so very blessed to meet a wide variety of well learned or widely lived people.. I have some times thought or wondered to my self a couple of things.. some good some not so good. Again, this is me being in competition with myself now and old self of then.
Sometimes, I truly regret not running to TORAH and HaShem earlier.
Almost like everything was right in front of my face… I was just too scared or preoccupied to reject lies for the TRUTH. Or worst… which is more likely and honest… I didn’t know what was a lie and I was living and believing in the lies of generations that were completely against my wonderful loving creator.
oh HaShem forgive me.
I am sure others understand and perhaps can identify with a part of my regrets. Well, if you might have comfort in my Rabbi says.. “things happens when they happen and HaShem is is control.” Of course he has his own way of explaining it, but that is a bit of what I get out of his lessons. Also, from some of his lessons or explaining in class I can see that perhaps I over think things far too much.
To both, I agree.
I often find myself wondering in a wanting to improve myself kind of way the following …
What made great people of the Torah and Tanakh great… what made them; them?
What made them be able to be a force of strong of good free will for the Glory of HaShem?
What or who was in their life that aiding or maybe ensure they would be a success?
How, who, or what were those that were stumbling blocks / enemies / evil / negative situation……. over come or endured?
And of course… how could I be something like that? But, in my own unique way that Almighty G-D has called me to be a light in this world for Him and Him alone?
How, how can I do the best I can do this life for the glory of HaShem?
I want so very badly to make my father proud! My glorious Father has done so much for me. I know I probably don’t even know half of what all He has protected or saved me from, but that of what I do know…. I AM so very grateful.
When I think of a situation that HaShem has brought me through or help me over come… I say thank you HaShem.
When I think of something great or happy in my life… i say… I love you HaShem.
How can I not want to do more and more for Him when He has done everything single thing just for me?
You know what I mean?
I look at the Sages or others of Blessed memory and think…. “I can do more for HaShem!”
Not in an evil eye or begetting kind of way. Not in a HaShem “needs me” puff up kind of way. But, in a I want to achieve and make HaShem’s name great because I love Him…..kind of way.
How can my love of HaShem be written in the TORAH of HaShem to help other too?
The funny thing is… I bet the people who did great amazing things for HaShem and Torah.. weren’t setting out to.
They probably just woke up, said their prayers, and loved HaShem.
Next thing they knew, they were fighting the greeks, walking through a Sea of Reeds, or driving a stake through the temple of an evil king.
I wonder now if they had know.. thousands of years later we be looking to them for inspiration and motivation; would they have tried harder, prayed longer and more often, or if they would have gave one more loved one a hug a little tighter?
Who knows I suppose.
Things always some how work out as they should. And of course G-D ensure things always work out for the greater good of all those who love Him.
I guess I am just hoping to be a part of the greater good. Only time will tell I suppose.
I wonder if Rabbi Isaac Ben Solomon Luria, ever wondered or thought these things or had these fears?
So who was Rabbi Isaac Ben Solomon Luria?
The 16th century Kabbalist, Rabbi Isaac Ben Solomon Luria revolutionized the study of Jewish mysticism through Kabbalah. Luria, also known as Isaac Ashkenazi, attracted a large number of followers who gave him the title of “HaAri,” The Lion, because of the initials of the phrase “haeloki Rabbi Yitzhak” – the divine Rabbi Yitzhak.
Luria was born in Jerusalem in 1534 to German parents. His father died when he was young, and Luria was brought up by his mother in the house of her brother, Mordecai Frances, a wealthy tax-farmer. In Egypt, Luria studied Jewish law and rabbinic literature under Rabbi David ben Solomon ibn Abi Zimra and Zimra’s successor, Bezalel Ashkenazi. Luria’s teachers considered him outstanding in non_mystical study and he collaborated with Ashkenazi on shitah mekubbetzet, a work on Jewish law based on Tractate Zevachim in the Talmud.
Luria originally won fame as a mystical poet. He later started teaching Kabbalah in an academy, and would occasionally speak in Ashkenazi synagogues. He was friendly with other Safed scholars, and formed a group of Kabbalists who met each Friday to confess their sins to each other. He revealed to his disciples the locations of graves of rabbis that he claimed to have discovered through spiritual revelations. He taught his students orally, teaching both theoretical Kabbalah and methods to communicate with the souls of tazddikim (righteous people). He felt that he could see people’s sins by looking at their foreheads. On the Sabbath, he dressed in white and many followers considered him a saint. Some say he believed himself to be the Messiah, the son of Joseph.
What is Kabbalah?
For the record I don’t suggest learning or practicing.. Kabbalah for those who are beginners to Judaism, former witches or necromancers, or anyone who has not studied and lived Torah less than 5 years minimum.
In my opinion, with out the foundation of Torah Kabbalah can turn to dark magic and sorcery for some….. look at hollywood, disney movies, highly promoted t.v., and the “lives” of celebrities ..just to name a few and one might see my point.
DovBer Pinson writes:
It is important to realize that the Kabbalah is more about losing ourselves than about finding, becoming more other-centered and less ego-centered. The literal translation of the word Kabbalah is ‘that which is received.’ To receive we must be receptive. We must open ourselves, creating a vessel in which to absorb that which we wish to understand or grasp, and in turn become part of Kabbalah. To open the self to a higher reality, to view the spirit within the matter, to raise our consciousness to the point where our perception of reality is completely changed, and the divine within all creation is revealed.
The Three Types of Kabbalah
Generally speaking, Kabbalah is divided into three categories: the theoretical, which concerns itself primarily with the inner dimensions of reality; the spiritual worlds, souls, angels, and the like, and the meditative, where the goal is to train the person who is studying to reach higher elevated meditative states of consciousness and, perhaps, even a state of prophecy through employing the Divine names, letter permutations, and so forth. The third type of Kabbalah is the magical, which concerns itself with altering and influencing the course of nature. It also uses the Divine names, incantations, amulets, magical seals and various other mystical exercises.
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From the definitions above I believe others might be able to understand and possibly adhere to my friendly warning. For those wondering, I myself do not practice Kabbalah. I would never practice or learn Kabbalah except under direct in person supervision from a referenced peer review and Orthodox Jewish Rabbinic Community approve and censored Rabbi. I wouldn’t even read about Kabbalah thats how cautious I am. But, there are those who are far more advanced, and mature, and educated than I, so please just be careful.
As expressed before we all have a purpose in the Torah of HaShem. He will guide us to what we are to do for His Glory and Name.
May we all have a place in His Torah… for it is. written….
Happy are those whose way is blameless,
who follow the teaching of the LORD.
Happy are those who observe His decrees,
who turn to Him wholeheartedly.
They have done no wrong,
but have followed His ways.
You have commanded that Your precepts
be kept diligently.
Would that my ways were firm
in keeping Your laws;
then I would not be ashamed
when I regard all Your commandments.
I will praise You with a sincere heart
as I learn Your just rules.
I will keep Your laws;
do not utterly forsake me.
How can a young man keep his way pure?—
by holding to Your word.
I have turned to You with all my heart;
do not let me stray from Your commandments.
In my heart I treasure Your promise;
therefore I do not sin against You.
Blessed are You, O LORD;
train me in Your laws.
With my lips I rehearse
all the rules You proclaimed.
I rejoice over the way of Your decrees
as over all riches.
I study Your precepts;
I regard Your ways;
I take delight in Your laws;
I will not neglect Your word.
Deal kindly with Your servant,
that I may live to keep Your word.
Open my eyes, that I may perceive
the wonders of Your teaching.
I am only a sojourner in the land;
do not hide Your commandments from me.
My soul is consumed with longing
for Your rules at all times.
You blast the accursed insolent ones
who stray from Your commandments.
Take away from me taunt and abuse,
because I observe Your decrees.
Though princes meet and speak against me,
Your servant studies Your laws.
For Your decrees are my delight,
my intimate companions.
My soul clings to the dust;
revive me in accordance with Your word.
I have declared my way, and You have answered me;
train me in Your laws.
Make me understand the way of Your precepts,
that I may study Your wondrous acts.
I am racked with grief;
sustain me in accordance with Your word.
Remove all false ways from me;
favor me with Your teaching.
I have chosen the way of faithfulness;
I have set Your rules before me.
I cling to Your decrees;
O LORD, do not put me to shame.
I eagerly pursue Your commandments,
for You broaden my understanding.
Teach me, O LORD, the way of Your laws;
I will observe them
Give me understanding, that I may observe Your teaching
and keep it wholeheartedly.
Lead me in the path of Your commandments,
for that is my concern.
Turn my heart to Your decrees
and not to love of gain.
Avert my eyes from seeing falsehood;
by Your ways preserve me.
Fulfill Your promise to Your servant,
which is for those who worship You.
Remove the taunt that I dread,
for Your rules are good.
See, I have longed for Your precepts;
by Your righteousness preserve me.
May Your steadfast love reach me, O LORD,
Your deliverance, as You have promised.
I shall have an answer for those who taunt me,
for I have put my trust in Your word.
Do not utterly take the truth away from my mouth,
for I have put my hope in Your rules.
I will always obey Your teaching,
forever and ever.
I will walk about at ease,
for I have turned to Your precepts.
I will speak of Your decrees,
and not be ashamed in the presence of kings.
I will delight in Your commandments,
which I love.
I reach out for Your commandments, which I love;
I study Your laws.
Remember Your word to Your servant
through which You have given me hope.
This is my comfort in my affliction,
that Your promise has preserved me.
Though the arrogant have cruelly mocked me,
I have not swerved from Your teaching.
I remember Your rules of old, O LORD,
and find comfort in them.
I am seized with rage
because of the wicked who forsake Your teaching.
Your laws are a source of strength to me
wherever I may dwell.
I remember Your name at night, O LORD,
and obey Your teaching.
This has been my lot,
for I have observed Your precepts.
The LORD is my portion;
I have resolved to keep Your words.
I have implored You with all my heart;
have mercy on me, in accordance with Your promise.
I have considered my ways,
and have turned back to Your decrees.
I have hurried and not delayed
to keep Your commandments.
Though the bonds of the wicked are coiled round me,
I have not neglected Your teaching.
I arise at midnight to praise You
for Your just rules.
I am a companion to all who fear You,
to those who keep Your precepts.
Your steadfast love, O LORD, fills the earth;
teach me Your laws.
You have treated Your servant well,
according to Your word, O LORD.
Teach me good sense and knowledge,
for I have put my trust in Your commandments.
Before I was humbled I went astray,
but now I keep Your word.
You are good and beneficent;
teach me Your laws.
Though the arrogant have accused me falsely,
I observe Your precepts wholeheartedly.
Their minds are thick like fat;
as for me, Your teaching is my delight.
It was good for me that I was humbled,
so that I might learn Your laws.
I prefer the teaching You proclaimed
to thousands of gold and silver pieces.
Your hands made me and fashioned me;
give me understanding that I may learn Your commandments.
Those who fear You will see me and rejoice,
for I have put my hope in Your word.
I know, O LORD, that Your rulings are just;
rightly have You humbled me.
May Your steadfast love comfort me
in accordance with Your promise to Your servant.
May Your mercy reach me, that I might live,
for Your teaching is my delight.
Let the insolent be dismayed, for they have wronged me without cause;
I will study Your precepts.
May those who fear You,
those who know Your decrees,
turn again to me.
May I wholeheartedly follow Your laws
so that I do not come to grief.
I long for Your deliverance;
I hope for Your word.
My eyes pine away for Your promise;
I say, “When will You comfort me?”
Though I have become like a water-skin dried in smoke,
I have not neglected Your laws.
How long has Your servant to live?
when will You bring my persecutors to judgment?
The insolent have dug pits for me,
flouting Your teaching.
All Your commandments are enduring;
I am persecuted without cause; help me!
Though they almost wiped me off the earth,
I did not abandon Your precepts.
As befits Your steadfast love, preserve me,
so that I may keep the decree You proclaimed.
The LORD exists forever;
Your word stands firm in heaven.
Your faithfulness is for all generations;
You have established the earth, and it stands.
They stand this day to [carry out] Your rulings,
for all are Your servants.
Were not Your teaching my delight
I would have perished in my affliction.
I will never neglect Your precepts,
for You have preserved my life through them.
I am Yours; save me!
For I have turned to Your precepts.
The wicked hope to destroy me,
but I ponder Your decrees.
I have seen that all things have their limit,
but Your commandment is broad beyond measure.
O how I love Your teaching!
It is my study all day long.
Your commandments make me wiser than my enemies;
they always stand by me.
I have gained more insight than all my teachers,
for Your decrees are my study.
I have gained more understanding than my elders,
for I observe Your precepts.
I have avoided every evil way
so that I may keep Your word.
I have not departed from Your rules,
for You have instructed me.
How pleasing is Your word to my palate,
sweeter than honey.
I ponder Your precepts;
therefore I hate every false way.
Your word is a lamp to my feet,
a light for my path.
I have firmly sworn
to keep Your just rules.
I am very much afflicted;
O LORD, preserve me in accordance with Your word.
Accept, O LORD, my freewill offerings;
teach me Your rules.
Though my life is always in danger,
I do not neglect Your teaching.
Though the wicked have set a trap for me,
I have not strayed from Your precepts.
Your decrees are my eternal heritage;
they are my heart’s delight.
I am resolved to follow Your laws
to the utmost forever.
I hate men of divided heart,
but I love Your teaching.
You are my protection and my shield;
I hope for Your word.
Keep away from me, you evildoers,
that I may observe the commandments of my God.
Support me as You promised, so that I may live;
do not thwart my expectation.
Sustain me that I may be saved,
and I will always muse upon Your laws.
You reject all who stray from Your laws,
for they are false and deceitful.
You do away with the wicked as if they were dross;
rightly do I love Your decrees.
My flesh creeps from fear of You;
I am in awe of Your rulings.
I have done what is just and right;
do not abandon me to those who would wrong me.
Guarantee Your servant’s well-being;
do not let the arrogant wrong me.
My eyes pine away for Your deliverance,
for Your promise of victory.
Deal with Your servant as befits Your steadfast love;
teach me Your laws.
I am Your servant;
give me understanding,
that I might know Your decrees.
It is a time to act for the LORD,
for they have violated Your teaching.
Rightly do I love Your commandments
more than gold, even fine gold.
Truly all [Your] precepts to be just . by all [Your] precepts I walk straight;
I hate every false way.
Your decrees are wondrous;
rightly do I observe them.
The words You inscribed give light,
and grant understanding to the simple.
I open my mouth wide, I pant,
longing for Your commandments.
Turn to me and be gracious to me,
as is Your rule with those who love Your name.
Make my feet firm through Your promise;
do not let iniquity dominate me.
Redeem me from being wronged by man,
that I may keep Your precepts.
Show favor to Your servant,
and teach me Your laws.
My eyes shed streams of water
because men do not obey Your teaching.
You are righteous, O LORD;
Your rulings are just.
You have ordained righteous decrees;
they are firmly enduring.
I am consumed with rage
over my foes’ neglect of Your words.
Your word is exceedingly pure,
and Your servant loves it.
Though I am belittled and despised,
I have not neglected Your precepts.
Your righteousness is eternal;
Your teaching is true.
Though anguish and distress come upon me,
Your commandments are my delight.
Your righteous decrees are eternal;
give me understanding, that I might live.
I call with all my heart;
answer me, O LORD,
that I may observe Your laws.
I call upon You; save me,
that I may keep Your decrees.
I rise before dawn and cry for help;
I hope for Your word.
My eyes greet each watch of the night,
as I meditate on Your promise.
Hear my voice as befits Your steadfast love;
O LORD, preserve me, as is Your rule.
Those who pursue intrigue draw near;
they are far from Your teaching.
You, O LORD, are near,
and all Your commandments are true.
I know from Your decrees of old
that You have established them forever.
See my affliction and rescue me,
for I have not neglected Your teaching.
Champion my cause and redeem me;
preserve me according to Your promise.
Deliverance is far from the wicked,
for they have not turned to Your laws.
Your mercies are great, O LORD;
as is Your rule, preserve me.
Many are my persecutors and foes;
I have not swerved from Your decrees.
I have seen traitors and loathed them,
because they did not keep Your word in mind.
See that I have loved Your precepts;
O LORD, preserve me, as befits Your steadfast love.
Truth is the essence of Your word;
Your just rules are eternal.
Princes have persecuted me without reason;
my heart thrills at Your word.
I rejoice over Your promise
as one who obtains great spoil.
I hate and abhor falsehood;
I love Your teaching.
I praise You seven times each day
for Your just rules.
Those who love Your teaching enjoy well-being;
they encounter no adversity.
I hope for Your deliverance, O LORD;
I observe Your commandments.
I obey Your decrees
and love them greatly.
I obey Your precepts and decrees;
all my ways are before You.
May my plea reach You, O LORD;
grant me understanding according to Your word.
May my petition come before You;
save me in accordance with Your promise.
My lips shall pour forth praise,
for You teach me Your laws.
My tongue shall declare Your promise,
for all Your commandments are just.
Lend Your hand to help me,
for I have chosen Your precepts.
I have longed for Your deliverance, O LORD;
Your teaching is my delight.
Let me live, that I may praise You;
may Your rules be my help;
I have strayed like a lost sheep;
search for Your servant,
for I have not neglected Your commandments.
This weeks word was selected at random from my personally owned The JPS Dictionary of Jewish Words by Joyce Eisenberg and Ellen Scolnic 2001 copyright 1st edition.
I’m not paid to endorse nor affiliated. This book is from my personal library. I purchased this book from Thriftbooks.com you can get your own personal low price copy using the link below.
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