Parsha: Behaalotecha (2023)

Mazal tov !!

What an exciting week it has been as we welcomed a new Baby Boy into our family!

A new soul has come down into this world. A soul is compared to a flame. The flames of the Menorah.

The Menorah is one of the most famous symbols of Judaism.

In fact, when Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion was travelling to visit and meet the President of the United States, he chose the Menorah as an appropriate gift for the President. He felt that the Menorah and its message truly represent us as a nation.

The Parsha, this week, opens up with the commandment of lighting the Menora.

There was a stool that stood in front of the menorahIn order to kindle the lamps, Aaron, the High priest, had to climb up this stool. His whole body was elevated.

This teaches us that when we kindle the spark of Judaism in ourselves or in another person, we benefit spiritually: we ascend a level. This ascent affects not only our head, our intellect and consciousness but our whole body—all aspects of our life. In fact, we ascend even before we actually affect the other person; the very decision to help others affects us first.

Thus, helping to rectify the world at large is more than just an act of altruism. It is an essential aspect of our own self-refinement, as well.

There was a young boy who was struggling in school and couldn’t find his place in society.

He started to withdraw from his friends and family.

He stopped going to school and was leading a very unproductive life.

One day his uncle invited him to come to a special needs facility to help with the children who required extra assistance.

Immediately the boy began to shine and felt needed. He made it his habit to go there daily.

Eventually, he climbed out of his misery by lifting up others.

This boy was climbing the “step” of the Menorah to be a shining light for others, but yet he was really elevating himself to a higher level.

We pray that this precious new soul will be a source of light and nachas for all those around him!

Shabbat Shalom

Rabbi Zalman