SHOFETIM: “BE PURE!”

It is written: תמים תהיה עם ה’ אלהיך Tamim tihye im Hashem Elokecha, “You shall be pure/perfect with the L-rd your G-d” (Devarim 18:13, Shofetim). The gematria absolute (mispar hechrachi) of this pasuk/verse is 1112. I saw that this is the same gematria of the pasuk ‘ונח מצא חן בעיני ה  Ve-Noah matsa chen be’einei Hashem, “And Noah found grace in the eyes of the L-rd” (Bereshit 6:8). Moreover, the next verse says: נח איש צדיק תמים  Noah ish tzaddik tamim, “Noah was a just man and perfect etc.” Now, the gematria avgad of the cited verse (from Shofetim) is 421, the same as the expression לישועה  L’yeshuah (“For salvation”). And this is my understanding: as Noah was a righteous tam, he found the Divine grace that saved him from the mabul/deluge, while all other human beings perished. To have pure and simple faith – to be a tam – is something that can save a person from his “personal deluge”. Moreover, the tzaddik helps “sweeten” the deluge of others. When the person comes to the tzaddik b’tzedaka (meaning, “giving a tzedaka”), of gematria 201, this mitigates (“sweetens”) the five states of gevurah (corporified in the sofit/final letters mem-nun-tzaddi-pei-chaf), being 201 x 5 = 1005, the gematria of ish tzaddik tamim. Perhaps this can better understood as 1005 / 201 = 5. The righteous takes the tzedaka and “distributes” (divides) it in order to sweeten the gevurot/severities. There is a difference between the ish tzaddik and the ish tsadik tamim, because the gematria of the first is 515, the same as yesharah (“straight”, see the Ari”zalSefer HaLikkutimVaEtchanan), but the attribute of tamim/pure gives a degree yet superior to the tzaddik. In this manner, the wholeness of being comes through righteousness (being “straight”) with the purity and simplicity that honors e makes the tzelem Elokim/Divine image shine. We see that מי כה’ אלקינו המגביהי לשבת  Mi ka’Hashem Elokeinu hamagbihi la’shavet, “Who is like the L-rd our G-d, who dwells on high” (Tehillim 113:5) has gematria 1005.

TRANSFORMATIONAL FIRE

As it is written: “Devekut [bonding] with Hashem is one of the 613 commandments. One is obligated, in accordance to ones ability; to make all efforts to properly observe this mitzva, at all times. One must be bonded with Hashem continually, with great yearning, and with sparks of burning love. There is no greater attribute than this, for all things are included in it. The difficulty in achieving it [devekut] is in direct proportion to its level of importance. The one who sanctifies himself below, is sanctified by above by Hashem, until such a time when that one receives a spirit from above which purifies, and sanctifies him. It is an obligation accordingly with you hability to make all efforts in order to fulfill this mitzva in the appropriate way in all moments” (Rabbi Eliezer Papo, Peleh Yoets, Dalet, Devekut). Now, it is written: והאש על המזבח תוקד בו Ve-haesh al-hamizbeach tukad-bo, “And the fire shall be burning always upon the altar; it shall never go out” (Vayikra 6:5). If we consider this pasuk without the initial vav and hei, I realized that its gematria is 981, the same as for ואתם הדבקים ביהוה אלהיכם חיים כלכם היום Ve’atem ha’devekim baHashem Elokeichem chayim kulchem hayom, “But you who held fast to YKVK are alive every one of you this day” (Devarim 4:4, Vaet’chanan) – possibly the most emblematic verse regarding the mitzva of devekut in the Torah (as well as Devarim 10:20 and 13:5). As such, the fire at the altar is the passion for Hashem that needs to burn constantly in the heart of man. Nothing is more transformational than devekut.