02 May 2022

Messianic "Brilliance" Shines in the Month of Ziv

1 Iyyar 5782
Rosh Chodesh II
16 Days of the Omer

(Reposting from three years ago)

I have written in the past about Three Messianic Wars, two of which have both occurred in the month of Iyyar or Ziv, as the Torah calls it. So, there is reason to believe that the third and final one, which is yet to be, will also occur in this month. 
It is related in the Prophets (Kings I, 6:1) that King Solomon began the building of the First Temple. “In the fourth year of Solomon’s reign over Israel, in the month of Ziv, which is the second month, he began to build the House of G-d.” The Radak explains: “The month Ziv is the month of Iyar… and it is called Ziv, as our sages explain, because of the splendor of the trees, namely the brilliance of the flowers and buds.” Ziv means “splendor” or “brilliance.” In this month of “brilliance” King Solomon “began to build the House of G-d.”
The two names of the month, Ziv and Iyar (from ohr, the primary word in Hebrew for “light”), are indeed two synonyms for “light.” They both relate to the special light that shines in this second month of the Jewish calendar. In particular, Iyar refers to the light source (or to the light within and proximate to its source), whereas Ziv refers to the expansion of radiant-energy as it shines far from its source. With regard to G-d’s Divine light, the Ziv is that radiance which descends from its source to shine on the Jewish soul as enclothed in a physical body on earth, and to awaken in it the desire to build a House for G-d (within the context of physical reality, far removed, as it were, from the source of Divine light).

...During Iyar, the “lower reality” is slowly refined to become a proper vessel able to receive the revelation of the essence of the “higher reality.” This is accomplished by fulfilling the commandment of sefirat ha-omer (“the counting of the omer; the word for “counting,” sefirah is from the same root as “saphire,” the brilliant stone known as even sapir, denoting the light scintillating from within lowly materiality). (Source)
Since the First Messianic War, which saw the return of Jewish sovereignty to a small part of Eretz Yisrael, took place on 5 Iyyar (20th Day of the Omer - Yesod in Tiferet) and the Second Messianic War, which saw the return of Jews to the mountains of Israel, the cities of the Patriarchs and Holy Jerusalem, took place on 28 Iyyar (43rd Day of the Omer - Chesed in Malchut), I have often wondered if the Third Messianic War, which is destined to bring us the East Bank of the Jordan River, as well as establish our sovereignty over the Temple Mount, will take place somewhere in the middle. Like the Sefirot themselves: one to the left, one to the right, and one the balance between the two.

The most obvious date would be 14 Iyyar - Pesach Sheini (29th Day of the Omer Chesed in Hod) with its obvious connections to redemption and second chances.  If we were looking for geulah on Pesach in Nisan, but were found undeserving, perhaps one month of counting the Omer might confer enough merit to bring geulah on Pesach Sheini 

On the other hand, a case could be made for any one of the days of the weeks during which we count the Sefirot of Netzach (Days 22 - 28 of the Omer) and Hod (Days 29 - 35 of the Omer). Day 33 of the Omer is, of course, L"g baOmer, the day the Zohar, which also alludes to brightness, was revealed.
...We will now describe the third group of sefirot which we will call the "tactical" sefirot; they are netzach, "victory," and hod, "awe."

When we call these sefirot "tactical," we mean that their purpose is not inherent in themselves, but rather as a means for something else.

For example, if I wish for my son, whom I love with all my heart, to make something of himself, I may have to be strict and stern with him in order to teach him discipline or insure that he applies himself to his studies, etc. The "strictness and sternness" is tactical -- that is, it is the means by which I endow the child with the benefits that I want him to have. But my intrinsic intent is that of kindness -- of giving him an education and teaching him values.

In another instance, I may use the tactic of kindness, though my intent may be antagonistic. I could lure an enemy into a trap by inviting him with a smile and a pleasant demeanor. The exterior fa├žade of the act is pleasantness, its interior is punitive.

Understanding these two attributes of netzach and hod gives us a new perspective into understanding what is happening in the world. No longer do we merely look at an act at face value, and attempt to understand it as such, but we must look at it also in terms of "a means to an end."

...For instance, the suffering of the righteous may be a test in order to heighten their reward, or a way to cleanse them in this world of their few sins so that they are pure and perfect in the World to Come. The wicked may be prospering in order that their feeling of complacency forestalls their repentance or in order that they should receive their entire reward on earth so their later destruction can be total.

There are other possibilities too; the main point is that there is more to God's actions than what appears to be happening at surface level. (Source)
Quoting SEFIROS: Spiritual Refinement Through Counting the Omer by Rabbi Yaacov Haber:

For the Sefirah of Netzach...
...While the first three sefiros are primarily about internal relations, both netzach and hod are midos that connect with the outside world.
Netzach gives the long term view.  It sees events as part of a much bigger story. 
...Netzach and hod are very closely connected.  The two keruvim, the golden cherubs on top of the Ark of the Covenant, which provided the interface between God and humanity, represented netzach and hod.  Similarly, the two pillars at the entrance to the First Beis HaMikdash were called Yachin and Boaz, and also represented netzach and hod.
...Netzach is closely associated with the Written Torah, while hod is connected to the Oral Law.
...Netzach is personified by Moshe Rabbeinu.
For the Sefirah of Hod...
...Choice is associated with hod because any choice can only be for the moment.  Just like hod, free choice focuses on the present, while ultimately affecting the future.
Aharon HaCohen personifies hod.
Hod in netzach is on Day 26 of the Omer - 26 being significant for the gematria of yud-kay-vav-kay.  That day is Yom Chamishi which corresponds to the fifth aliyah of Parashat Behar  (Vayikra 25) ...
29  And when a man sells a residential house in a walled city, its redemption may take place until the completion of the year of its sale. Its [period of] redemption shall be a full year.
30  But if it is not redeemed by the end of a complete year, then that house which is in the city that has a wall, shall remain permanently [the property] of the one who purchased it throughout his generations. It will not leave [his possession] in the Jubilee.
31  But houses in open cities, which do not have a wall surrounding them, are to be considered as the field of the land. It may have redemption and shall leave [the purchaser's possession] in the Jubilee.
32  And, [regarding] the cities of the Levites, the houses of their inherited cities shall forever have a [right of] redemption for the Levites.
33  And if one purchases from the Levites, whether a house or an inherited city, will leave [the possession of the purchaser] in the Jubilee, because the houses of the cities of the Levites, are their inherited property amidst the children of Israel.
34  And a field in the open areas of their cities cannot be sold, because it is their eternal inheritance.
35  If your brother becomes destitute and his hand falters beside you, you shall support him [whether] a convert or a resident, so that he can live with you.
36  You shall not take from him interest or increase, and you shall fear your God, and let your brother live with you.
37 You shall not give him your money with interest, nor shall you give your food with increase.
38  I am the Lord, your God, Who took you out of the land of Egypt, to give you the land of Canaan, to be a God to you.
It's all about redemption and return of the land.  In fact, the entire parashah is about redemption and restoration. How appropriate to the Third Messianic War!

Shabbat is Day 28 of the Omer - Netzach in Malchut.  The number 28 is the gematria of koach (power) and is twice yad (hand)  as in HKB"H acting with the power of both hands to redeem Yisrael.  The seventh aliyah...
47  If a resident non-Jew gains wealth with you, and your brother becomes destitute with him and is sold to a resident non-Jew among you or to an idol of the family of a non-Jew.
48  After he is sold, he shall have redemption; one of his brothers shall redeem him.
49  Or his uncle or his cousin shall redeem him, or the closest [other] relative from his family shall redeem him; or, if he becomes able to afford it, he can be redeemed [on his own].
50  He shall calculate with his purchaser [the number of years] from the year of his being sold to him until the Jubilee year; then, the purchase price shall be [divided] by the number of years; as the days of a hired worker, he shall be with him.
51  If there are still many years, according to them, he shall return his redemption [money] out of the money for which he was purchased.
52  But if only a few years remain until the Jubilee year, he shall make the [same] calculation; according to his years [that remain until Jubilee], he shall return the redemption [money]._
53 He shall be with him as an employee hired year by year; he shall not enslave him with rigor in your sight.
54 And if he is not redeemed through [any of] these [ways], he shall go out in the Jubilee year he and his children with him.
55  For the children of Israel are servants to Me; they are My servants, whom I took out of the land of Egypt. I am the Lord, your God.
The commentary on this parashah says...
The commandment of the Sabbatical Year has a special relationship to Mount Sinai [Behar].  At Mount Sinai, God's majesty and power were so manifest that it was clear that the determining factors in human material success are God's will and man's worthiness.  The land's rest in the seventh year, too, teaches that the primary force in the universe is God, not the law of nature.  ...The Torah emphasizes, therefore, that it is God Who gives the land.
And as if that were not enough!  The haftarah comes from Yirmiyahu 32:6-27 and begins as follows...
6  And Jeremiah said: The word of the Lord came to me, saying:
7  Behold, Hanamel, the son of Shallum your uncle, is coming to you, saying: Buy for yourself my field that is in Anathoth, for the right of redemption is yours to buy it.
8  Then Hanamel, my uncle's son, came to me in the prison yard, according to the word of the Lord, and said to me; Please buy my field that is in Anathoth, that is in the country of Benjamin, for the right of inheritance is yours, and you have the right of redemption; buy it for yourself." And I knew that this was the word of the Lord.
...14  So said the Lord of Hosts, the God of Israel; Take these scrolls, this deed of purchase and the signed one and this open scroll, and put them into an earthen vessel so that they remain many years.
15  For so says the Lord of Hosts, the God of Israel; Houses and fields and vineyards shall be purchased again in this land.

...37  Behold I will gather them from all the lands where I have driven them with My anger and with My wrath and with great fury, and I will restore them to this place and I will cause them to dwell safely.
38  And they shall be My people, and I will be their God.

...44  Men shall buy fields for money and inscribe deeds and sign [them] and appoint witnesses in the land of Benjamin and in the environs of Jerusalem, and in the cities of Judah and in the cities of the mountain and in the cities of the lowland and in the cities of the southland, for I will restore their captivity, says the Lord.
So may we see the complete fulfillment of this prophecy and the complete restoration of all our land and people.  

Netzach means "eternal" and "victory." May the Holy One, blessed be He, reveal our righteous Mashiach now and grant us an eternal victory over all our enemies.

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