hilulah of the arizal 5768

We look at the world and are fascinated by the similarity between foreign objects. This is the essence of patterns, finding a similarity or a larger unity in an array of objects. Fractals, repetitive patterns that build on themselves in multiple dimensions, are comforting to us. They allow us to see that all of the complexities of the world boil down to a few simple comprehensible rules.

This is the modern outlook, the perspective that grew out of science. It is wonderous and miraculous, and when we look with this eye, we can take joy in the world testifying to HaShem's unity, to the fact that all ultimately derives from one.

This, however, is part of the sheker, the lie, of this world. Olam haZeh, olam haSheker. These are the training wheels. The whole world presents itself to us, as self-referential patterns, fractals, so that we won't be overwhelmed by the sheer magnitude of HaShem.

As we grow, part of that growth is to temper ourselves to be able to witness the true unique nature of everything in creation. What at first might seem like things that can be generalized, when seen with further introspection, can be recognized and an utterly unique expression of God's reality.

What does this really mean, in practical terms? Everything about the humanity we know about is a tremendous pattern-engine. We recognize, find, create, and imagine patterns. Everything we know and want to know is based in the interplay of relative information.

This is the nature of humanity. And, HaShem wants us to break that nature.

Letting go of the patterns, of the general rules, until every moment is a sheer unfiltered revelation of Godliness.

This isn't for everyone, and we even know that there are boundaries to this, but nonetheless, the Ramchal (in Da'ath Tevunoth) tells us this is the sole purpose of creation. Everything that was created was created specifically to enable this higher awareness.

Like everything else, including the mitzwoth, the Baal Shem Tov, explains that really we can't accomplish anything on our own. The impetus and the success are entirely dependent on HaShem's direct intervention in our lives. But we have to be open to, and seek out that intervention. We have to start somwhere, and grow from there.

If you open a hole for me, like the eye of a needle, I will open an opening for you the size of a ballroom. That's HaShem's promise to us.

All we have to do is start small and keep at it. That's not just another category, it's not a person, a hand, a flower, a plane or a nose, it's a unique portal that looks out onto everything.

It seems the Arizal teaches us that the small hole to open is happiness.

Make yourself a little happy for HaShem, and watch the miracles unfold.


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