The Tabernacle

Discussion in 'Interfaith Parsha Project' started by Bandit, Jan 10, 2006.

  1. pohaikawahine

    pohaikawahine Elder Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2005
    Messages:
    660
    Likes Received:
    0
    bandit - you are so funny .... don't be afraid of the holy of holies, we will enter together and I will hold your hand :) .... here is another site that I think will be helpful on this thread .... the arrangement of the camp in the wilderness from Numbers 2 www.bibleexplained.com/moses/Numb/nu02.htm .... aloha nui, poh
     
  2. bananabrain

    bananabrain awkward squadnik

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2003
    Messages:
    2,749
    Likes Received:
    2
    poh and others,

    you may be interested in mary douglas' "leviticus as literature" - she covers much of this territory from an anthropological pov and is considered very authoritative.

    b'shalom

    bananabrain
     
  3. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,172
    Likes Received:
    0
    thank you for the source, BB. Mary Douglas has done a lot of homework on this & offers some links to others. interesting to note how she sees the tabernacle carried through the rest of the scriptures & that is refreshing for me.:)

    Leviticus as Literature,
    James Hoffmeir takes an in depth look also.:)
    Author: Hoffmeier, James K.

    Source: Ancient Israel in Sinai,

    Abstract:

     
  4. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,172
    Likes Received:
    0
    for some odd reason i was not able to save & upload that diagram properly to my photo album. However-

    that site led me to find a couple of more diagrams i was looking for. this one gives an aerial view of the camp layout & a good reminder that the tribe of Judah was on the east of the Tabernacle & that there were actually 13 tribes considering Levi.

    i figure it is all related:)

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    references for research:
    1. Exodus 25-27, 36-38, 40.
    2. Genesis 41:37-41
    3. Genesis 48
    4. Genesis 29, 35, 46, 49; Exodus 1; Numbers 1:1-15, 1:20-43:2; 2:7, 10, 13, 26, 34; Deuteronomy 27, 33; Joshua 13ff; Judges 5; 1 Chronicles 2:1, 2:3-8, 12, 27; Ezekiel 48, Revelation 7.
    5. Numbers 2
    6. Ezekiel 1:10, 10:14, Revelation 4:7 (some feel that the seraphim in Isaiah 6 are the same.
    7. Numbers 2:3, 10, 18, 25.
     
  5. pohaikawahine

    pohaikawahine Elder Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2005
    Messages:
    660
    Likes Received:
    0
    mahalo nui bb for the reference .... i've ordered two of her books "leviticus as literature" and "in the wilderness" .... the second one looks really interesting also ... the book description says that

    "following on from the paperback edition of leviticus as literature, this is the revised paperback of mary douglas's classical account of the book of numbers. mary douglas argues that, like leviticus, numbers is actually a highly complex book arranged in a regular ring structure which narratives and laws into 12 parts. she argues that it is only through an understnding of the ring formation of these parts that one can fully appreciate the meaning behind this complex work."

    i suspect that the "circle of stones" will tie into the structure of the camps around the tabernacle .... the circle of twelve is very ancient in its symbology .... and bandit, i just read that the tribe of Levi was not counted in the number which would leave 12 .... this would make sense to me because they are closer to the center and not in the circle itself ....hmmmmm i hope i got this right ....

    gotta leave for work .... back later .... aloha nui, poh
     
  6. pohaikawahine

    pohaikawahine Elder Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2005
    Messages:
    660
    Likes Received:
    0
    I noticed in the diagram of the camp layout that ox, man, eagle and lion are also placed around the center of the tabernacle and I was reading that when king david conqured jerusalem and his son king solomon built the first temple, all the elements of the tabernacle were incorporated into the newly built permanent temple .... for some crazy reason I didn't think about the sequence that the plan was laid out long before solomon and the first temple, although it should have been obvious ....does anyone know if each tribe had a particular function or role that they were responsible for .... this may, or may not, be important to their placement in the camp .... we should also be referencing back and forth to the weekly parsha since we are in exodus (literally and figuratively all of us are in exodus until we reach that place of sanctuary)....I've been receiving weekly parsha articles from both orthodox and reform groups so that I can get a broader perspective as we move through exodus ....


    the concept of the 'sanctuary' is also important in my mind .... the place of refuge, safety .... on the hawaiian islands there are still remains of ancient 'sanctuary's' places in which people would go for safety from all kinds of things (even crimes).... if one could reach this place, they were protected inside .... as far as I know (besides taking place in an actual physical site) these sites are also metaphors for the inner sanctum of the brain, the holy of holies .... the place in which we find not only our sanctuary, our refuge, but our freedom .... once we find it, no one can every take it away again unless we give it away .... we change in the way we think and act before we find this place and certainly forever after ,after we find it .... it is almost impossible not to .... so if the tabernacle in the wilderness is also a metaphor for the internal process of bridging the hemispheres of the brain to find the place of revelations and visions, or the place in we which we meet g!d face to face .... every aspect of its design will give us a clue ....

    regarding the breastplate and the 12 gems, I also read that there is an inside pocket that contains the two stones referred to as urim and thummim, translated as 'lights and perfections' or 'revelation and truth' .... this, again in my view, is one of the most important aspects of the priestly robes because according to one account 'the twelve stones in the breastplate were the means by which urim and thummin would exercise their functions' .... if the twelve stones are related to the twelve pairs of cranial nerves, as i suspect and think, this would be logical because it is the 12 pairs of cranial nerves that make the two hemisphers of the brain function (the two hemispheres functioning together as a whole would be the knowledge of urim and thummin as revelation and truth) .... the mormon religion also has a focus on the role of urim and thummin and they were suppose to have been used by joseph smith when he wrote the book of mormon ....

    i'm trying my best to use g!d without spelling out the word .... i just received a notice from one of the groups that i subscribe to that they made a mistake in the last newsletter spelling out the name of g!d and asked everyone that printed it to bury it in accordance with laws .... since i now realize that this is important, i'm trying to not do anything that would be disrespectful ....

    even in hawaiian old traditions the name of the great creator could not be uttered .... but today everyone 'utters' .... there must be a good reason but i have not come to understand it fully yet .... but i keep trying .... he hawai'i au, poh

    p.s. i now have pictures of the taberncle, the layout, etc hanging all around my computer so that I can keep studying them as move through this .... I should add some of the human brain .... another question .... is the tabernacle itself called mishkan or is this only a reference to the inner chamber?
     
  7. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,172
    Likes Received:
    0
    Here is a replica of the breastplate we discussed earlier.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,172
    Likes Received:
    0
    I think Levi was always around the Tabernacle & that tribe did not fight. i picked up this study at another forum as well to get more info as we go. i know others here have studied the tribes closer than I have.

    right. it is the same tabernacle/temple that was incorporated into solomons temple. that is cool because everyone i talked to yesterday did not know that & had no idea what i was talking about by 'Tabernacle in the Wilderness'.

    sorry, i have not been going into this weeks parsha very much, but wont let that get too behind for very long over the rest of the winter- i promise.


    i actually like it when you use the brain in metaphor because I see God as the brain/mind, & we as the body of that brain.
    i also agree so much with you that today this is not about being in an actual physical site any longer & how sanctuary is a refuge. But the site & all it details will indeed show us many mysteries about this sanctuary & how to get into the holy of holies.

    Pohaikawahine, i went to two magor bookstores & two libraries yesterday & they did not shelve one single book dedicated strictly to the tabernacle. i have heard some say it is an outdated concept- i do not believe that for a second.
    i did get a lead to a museum here in ChiTown & was directed to the main library downtown. this is a challenging topic, for sure.

    i am pretty sure i will need to order some books online, just want to make sure of the authors & reputations of the books before i do that. i am also looking at videos to purchase for visual.
    this is exciting to me:)
     
  9. pohaikawahine

    pohaikawahine Elder Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2005
    Messages:
    660
    Likes Received:
    0
    what a great close up of the breastplate where you can actually see the names inscribed on each stone (couldn't see this in the copies that I saw on-line) ....


    I'm waiting for the two books that I ordered "liviticus as literature" and "in the wilderness" to see what insights they may give on the tabernacle ....

    another book I'm looking at is called "the secret books of the egyptian gnostics" by jean doresse .... here are two quotes that may be interesting in the study of the tabernacle ....

    from a text that is written in sahidic coptic " .... the spiritual force, before it had been manifested, its name was not this at all, but it was: Silence. For everything that was in the heavenly Paradise was sealed in silence. Those who participate in this will become spiritual and will know the Whole. "

    "a long dissertation is based upon symbols derived from the structure of the Temple, of the holy of holies and the veil through which the high priest alone can pass: this is a simile which had been employed before; its symbolism had already been used to support very different arguments in the Gnostic writings of Theodotus, fragments of which have been preserved for us by Clement of Alexandria." "G!d is compared, at length, to a good dyer who blends his colours. The breath of the glassblower blowing a vase is a simile for the pneuma. The destiny of man is discussed in parallel with that of an ass turning a mill, walking miles and miles but always finding himself, for all his trouble, miserbly in the same place. The soul which is no way united to the Spirit is likened to the isolated man or woman, exposed to the gallant advances of persons destitute of wisdom.'

    small pieces, but each opens a possible door to a way of interpreting symbols .... even the fact that this is a portable temple is important in my view because if it related to an internal passase then we each carry this portable structure with us wherever we go and (although some may not like to hear this) when we each realize that we ourselves are the 'high priests', we can learn to enter behind the veil and not die in the process .... but we must rise from the water (the lower parts of our body) pass through the fire (the fornix) and enter the holy of holies (the limbic system, the place of the pineal gland) with the spiralling energy .... the spinal column is sometimes referred to as the staff and the spiralling energy is the serpent .... so look at the symbols when the staff is thrown to the ground the becomes a snake ....

    as we move through exodus each parsha tells us things on several levels .... in my view, we are moving toward a deeper understanding of the real meaning of the tabernalce in the wilderness .... not only a model for the temple of solomon, but a blueprint for each of us .... aloha nui, poh
     
  10. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,172
    Likes Received:
    0
    i am thinking i should order the same two books Poh. they look like the best i have come across... that way we can be using the same material. i will get back with more of the Tabernacle & your post on monday.

    stay sweet Pohaikawahine:)
     
  11. pohaikawahine

    pohaikawahine Elder Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2005
    Messages:
    660
    Likes Received:
    0
    aloha e bandit - there is so much to read and learn, but all so exciting and fascinating .... the books arrived and i hardly know where to start .... but here is one reference from "in the wilderness" by mary douglas about the structure of numbers (important because it may ultimately have some relationship to the structure of the camp around the tabernacle itself) "we are so used to linear writing that it is a shock at first to imagine a whole law book or epic constructed as if it were a sonnet with a very definite rhyming system." "in the case of numbers, section 2 starts the series of laws and matches to 12, which concludes it; the stories in 3 correspond to those in 11; the laws in 4 correspond to those in 10, and so on. The result is that the whole of numbers is constructed in a huge ring formed of alternating stories and laws set in parallel with each other, twelve in all." and a few other notes to contemplate


    it appears that the "mother's rank is significant for the Genesis stroy and we should be prepared to find that it partly governs the placing of tribes around the tabernacle in Numbers" .... "the story of how the Lord placed them around the tabernalce is the first of the reminders in the Numbers's stories that the prophecies have come tgrue and the curses and blessings are fulfilled" (going back to Genesis and part of Jacob's deathbed oration)

    "Levi has no place among the inheritors of the land, and the other two of the curses sons of Leah, Reuben and Simeon, stand on the south, joined by Leah's servant's child, Gad. So the diagram makes it clear that cursed and low-ranking sons can stand together, ont he north and the south, regardless of their birth place in the family. On the east and west, children of one mother, in correct birth order, face each other, Judah and his full brothers on the east, Ephraim and his brother and uncle on the west. By divine command Rachel and Leah have been placed on opposite sides of the tabernacle facing each oher."

    "All twelve tribes, with the exception of Levi, are treated throughout Numbers as the heirs of the promises: none is formally disinherited. Cursed or blessed by Jacob, sinners or good men in the Genesis story, whatever their ancestors did, and whatever they do to confirm their sinfulness in the course of the book of numbers, by the end of the story they will have all had their portion of the promised land assigned to them."

    (on a personal side note .... I'm finding this all to be interesting on a personal level as well because my grandfather's middle name was Levi and I never knew where it came from .... L. Levi Mann, on my father's side .... and he never claimed to be Jewish or anything for that matter, but there is a picture in the old family album of a man wearing 'kippah' .... I saw the picture once and then it disappeared .... I haven't though about these things in a long time but this work on the tabernacle has brought back those memories and thoughts)

    I guess I have to go back to Genesis and find the sections where Jacob foretells what will befall each of the tribes .... I read about the tribe of Dan "Dan shall judge his people, as one of the tribes of Israel. Dan shall be a serpent by the way, an adder in the path, that biteth the horse heels, so that his rider shall fall backward." and that after Genesis, the Torah seems to exclude Dan .... the tribe of Dan originally entered the promised land of Israel in the time of Joshua. They occupied a strip of coast country on the Mediterranean, west of Jerusalem. They engaged primarly in shipping and international commerce. "Dan abode in ships" .... so I want to try and put together a small piece on each tribe and then see if there is any relationship to the placement around the tabernacle .... also each tribe have a relationship to one of the gemstones on the breastplate of the high priest .... I keep remembering that it is suppose to be the twelve gemstones that help urim and thummin function (urim and thummin were suppose to be two stones or gems that were placed behind the breastplate) ....were urim and thummin ever mentioned as a part of the tabernacle structure ??.... Masonic legend (supposingly taught during the 13, 14 and 21 degree ceremonies of Masonry) state that urim and thummin were part of the recovered artifacts taken from Solomon's temple after hiram abiff was murdered while protecting the temple treasury.

    me ke aloha pumehana, poh
     
  12. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,172
    Likes Received:
    0
    thank you for the post, POH.

    just one question on the two books. did they offer any diagrams & drawings?
    i will be ordering them also, but you will probably be way ahead of me.

    i am just going to add this site for now. i am in awe at what this David Hamilton has studied & put together in a traveling portable tabernacle.
    Mishkan Ministries. it has a nice opening song how we can enter boldly into the holy of holies & make our petitions known. a lot of pictures of the articles on the pattern of the Tabernacle. i am watching to see if it travels near here this year.:)


    http://www.mishkanministries.org/


     
  13. pohaikawahine

    pohaikawahine Elder Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2005
    Messages:
    660
    Likes Received:
    0
    aloha e bandit .... interesting I was just doing some research on the 'day of atonement' (aka yom kippur) .... it on this day that the kohen gadol 'high priest' purified the kodesh k'dashim, the holy of holies .... the high priest walked up a special ramp to the altar, filled a gold pan with coals and a golden ladel with incense .... then, with everyone watching, he walked into the kodesh k'dashim, the holy of holies, the inner sanctuary where G-d's spirit dwelled .... once inside, he lit the incense, and if all went well, emerged unscathed from the inner chamber .... what I am a little unsure of is whether or not this was practiced in the portable tabernacle in the wilderness .... I read that following the completion of the mishkan, the portable tabernacle, Moses, through direct communication with G-d instructed the people in the tabernacle's service and ritual and that today the basic elements of the temple service are symbolically recreated in the taffilot, prayer services and traditional jewish homelife.


    the sacrafice of blood was as I understand an act of purification and the high priest sprinkled blood on the curtain that of the holy of holies as an act of purification .... which leads us also to circumcision .... also an act of purification and a sign of the covenant (berit) 'sealed inthe flesh' .... it includes in some cases a special chair or seat which could be symbolic of the seat of mercy in the tabernacle .... and of course, the sacrafice of blood ...
    yet, during the time of wandering in the wilderness circumcision was not performed .... I get a little confused about the sequencing of things and times ....

    if we keep looking at possible inner meanings of the tabernacle as well as other rituals connected with the tabernacle I think that we will still see that it fits into the inner body movement of energy .... if the tabernacle is also replication within each of us, then it is by its definition portable (because we would carry it with us always) .... and if wandering the wilderness is a metaphor for the energy that we have not yet been able to direct to the holy of holies (located in the limbic system of the brain) .... then everything still fits .... the day of atonement when sins against G-d are sealed, circumcision as a sign of the covenant (berit) 'sealed in the flesh', and the fact that on this day the high priest can enter the holy of holies would lead me to believe that if we could all find this place of sanctuary with our own portable tabernacles, we will each have the ability to enter the holy of holies and will be sealed .... I can't put it all together as coherently as I would like, but it is getting there .... aloha nui, poh

    p.s. the books have no pictures or diagrams ....just lots and lots of words to digest and contemplate ....
     
  14. pohaikawahine

    pohaikawahine Elder Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2005
    Messages:
    660
    Likes Received:
    0
    aloha e bandit - when you receive the books by mary douglas you will find some diagrams of the layout of the tribes around the tabernacle in "in the wilderness" which are most interesting and informative .... when mary douglas begins to describe the relationship in the structure of the text and the suggestion that "in the bible a woman is often a metaphor for Israel" we begin to see the possibility that "the .... women's stories have to do with desacration of the tabernacle" .... in going back over the parshas and various interpretations and possibilities, it would appear that those "wayward women" are metaphors for something much deeper related to understanding our spiritual nature and the inner tabernacle in the wilderness .... that portable tabernacle that we carry around with us all the time .... I agree with some of her suggestions that the bible reference refer to "a woman" and not 'women' in general .... "a woman" refers to "Israel, the mystic bride" .... the regathering will take place when each of us enters the inner sanctum, the holy of holies and reach the top of the mountain .... the summit .... we can only do it one-by-one and it requires entering the circle of stones, or the court of the elders .... I love the metaphors ..... aloha nui, poh
     
  15. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,172
    Likes Received:
    0
    very sweet:) . the bookstore just called me tonight & i am picking them both up tomorrow. i saw your post on the leviticus book in Judaism also. i would like to join that as well in the near future.
     
  16. pohaikawahine

    pohaikawahine Elder Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2005
    Messages:
    660
    Likes Received:
    0
    aloha e bandit - so glad your books have arrived .... so much for us to share .... I just posted a small thought on the thread on the Dalai Lama .... he and his people are currently in exile wandering the globe waiting to return "home" .... we should be thinking about this as we go through Exodus because the message is the same .... perhaps those powers greater than us are showing us the way in many different venues and this is the heart of comparative religions .... the Israelites are still in exile and wait for the regathering, the Dalai Lama and his people are in exile and wait for the return "home" ....the holy of holies, paradise, the promised land awaits each of us and invites us to return "home" .... all ritual connected with the tabernacle in the wilderness reminds us of who we really are ... even the garments of the high priest replicate the cosmos and replicate our own bodies .... every aspect is carefully laid out and we have to look at the whole, not just the individual pieces ....

    in the Popol Vuh (the mayan chant of creation or book of creation) the gods created the first four men and they were too perfect (they could see to the ends of the world just as well as the gods), so the gods brought a mist (or a fog) down and it clouded the eyes of these first four men .... and as a result they could no longer see so perfectly .... but what is the lesson??? power was not to be conslidated into only one (because it has more of a chance of being abused), but instead real power lies in the flow between the four corners .... only together can they see the "whole" .... there are many metaphors .... for many cultures each clan has its piece of the greater puzzle, but only together can the whole meaning of the song be known .... let us keep this in mind as we take this walk together .... aloha nui, poh
     
  17. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,172
    Likes Received:
    0
    Aloha POH,
    i am seeing all these mcirocosms the same as i always have but leanred more that paradox & parallel does not have to always be exact but i think the figure or at least there has to be one figure present & to be exact or else you cant make a parallel. i want to go through the leviticus book first then come back to the tabernacle later, if that is ok with you.

    those first four men in the mayan is kind of like Adam only Adam never got that far, not in the garden anyway. i am just wondering how much of these other cultures were aware of the the culture found in the OT. because the OT definately acknowledges many of these other cultures in the books & distinguishes them as different though they have similiarities. but how much is there that takes note of what is going on in the camp of Israel from the outside? i dont know but i am very curious so keep that in mind when you come across things for me.
    so what you are seeing there with Dalai Lama, i see it also.:)

    real power lies between the four corners & not in the political agendas for sure. good one.
    Aloha!
     
  18. pohaikawahine

    pohaikawahine Elder Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2005
    Messages:
    660
    Likes Received:
    0
    no problem bandit .... leviticus first .... aloha nui, poh
     
  19. pohaikawahine

    pohaikawahine Elder Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2005
    Messages:
    660
    Likes Received:
    0
    gosh bandit - we got a little waylaid on our thread here .... thank goodness the tabernacle is portable and we can carry it with us everywhere and it is never lost .... the 50 days from Passover to Shavuot are in process and I was reading the JPS Guide to Jewish Trditions .... Shavuot is certainly a day filled with many symbols that culminate in reaching that space of freedom .... included are:

    Shavuot is observed as the annivesary of the giving of the Torah on Mount Sinai

    In Temple times two loaves of bread were "waved before the Lord" on Shavuopt - the only meal offering baked with leaven. The fully risen hametz (leavened bread) symbolizes the completion of this period from materialism to spiritualism (reaching the top of the mountain) .... the process of redemption from slavery that began on Passover to freedom (as I see it) when the Torah was given on Mount Sinai.

    One reading that is customary on the first day is Ezekiel's mystical vision of the devine chariot (merkavah) .... this is important because it relates to reaching that place of visions and revelations,the merkavah would be similar to the unfolding or opening of the lotus flower in deep meditation ....

    The sunrise service symbolizes the arrival of the light of the Torah (I find this also interesting because on the island of Molokai there will be a sunrise service where dancers will dance from midnight until the sunrise (I have several hula sisters who will be attending this ritual) .... it will take place high on a cliff....

    Shavuot is also the harvest festival and is connected to a Tree of Life (and the Tree of Life as I understand it is the human body itself that is rooted in the earth yet has access to the heavens when the energy moves upward) .... this would closely resemble the process of reaching the highest level of spirituality, the Jubilee (freedom) .... and I read ....

    "in some communities, the challot baked for Shavuot are long and have four corners, symbolizing the four methods of interpreting the Torah..."

    It seems to me that all the symbols come together on Shavuot .... so bandit, where does our tabernacle in the wilderness fit with Shavuot .... if the 50 days are reached and we as individuals and collectively raise our consciousness to a higher level of being (truly receive the message of the Torah) would the portable temple become permanent or would it cease to exist because we would find the land of milk and honey. (which by the way, dairy foods are traditionally eaten during Shavuot because according to legend, upon learning the laws of kashrut at Sinai, the Israelites understood that their pots were not kosher and thus resolved to eat only uncooked diry foods until they could get new ones. Some people eat honey in the verse, "Honey and milk are under your tongue." (Song 4:11) ....In gematria, the numerical value of the Hebrew word "halav" (milk) equals 40, corresponding to the number of days Moses spent on Mount Sinai receiving the Torah."

    Hmmmmm we can also eat blintzes filled with sweetened cheese and topped with fresh fruit .... I would say we have a great and powerful day arriving .... I think we will have to enter the center of the tabernacle and be ready to face a new a better world .... I also think I'm ready to enter the synagogue and look upon the ark of the covenant (or its symbol) with a new sense of awe and wonder at the messages left us in the Torah .... aloha nui, poh
     
  20. pohaikawahine

    pohaikawahine Elder Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2005
    Messages:
    660
    Likes Received:
    0
    gosh bandit - we got a little waylaid on our thread here .... thank goodness the tabernacle is portable and we can carry it with us everywhere and it is never lost .... the 50 days from Passover to Shavuot are in process and I was reading the JPS Guide to Jewish Trditions .... Shavuot is certainly a day filled with many symbols that culminate in reaching that space of freedom .... included are:

    Shavuot is observed as the annivesary of the giving of the Torah on Mount Sinai

    In Temple times two loaves of bread were "waved before the Lord" on Shavuopt - the only meal offering baked with leaven. The fully risen hametz (leavened bread) symbolizes the completion of this period from materialism to spiritualism (reaching the top of the mountain) .... the process of redemption from slavery that began on Passover to freedom (as I see it) when the Torah was given on Mount Sinai.

    One reading that is customary on the first day is Ezekiel's mystical vision of the devine chariot (merkavah) .... this is important because it relates to reaching that place of visions and revelations,the merkavah would be similar to the unfolding or opening of the lotus flower in deep meditation ....

    The sunrise service symbolizes the arrival of the light of the Torah (I find this also interesting because on the island of Molokai there will be a sunrise service where dancers will dance from midnight until the sunrise (I have several hula sisters who will be attending this ritual) .... it will take place high on a cliff....

    Shavuot is also the harvest festival and is connected to a Tree of Life (and the Tree of Life as I understand it is the human body itself that is rooted in the earth yet has access to the heavens when the energy moves upward) .... this would closely resemble the process of reaching the highest level of spirituality, the Jubilee (freedom) .... and I read ....

    "in some communities, the challot baked for Shavuot are long and have four corners, symbolizing the four methods of interpreting the Torah..."

    It seems to me that all the symbols come together on Shavuot .... so bandit, where does our tabernacle in the wilderness fit with Shavuot .... if the 50 days are reached and we as individuals and collectively raise our consciousness to a higher level of being (truly receive the message of the Torah) would the portable temple become permanent or would it cease to exist because we would find the land of milk and honey. (which by the way, dairy foods are traditionally eaten during Shavuot because according to legend, upon learning the laws of kashrut at Sinai, the Israelites understood that their pots were not kosher and thus resolved to eat only uncooked diry foods until they could get new ones. Some people eat honey in the verse, "Honey and milk are under your tongue." (Song 4:11) ....In gematria, the numerical value of the Hebrew word "halav" (milk) equals 40, corresponding to the number of days Moses spent on Mount Sinai receiving the Torah."

    Hmmmmm we can also eat blintzes filled with sweetened cheese and topped with fresh fruit .... I would say we have a great and powerful day arriving .... I think we will have to enter the center of the tabernacle and be ready to face a new a better world .... I also think I'm ready to enter the synagogue and look upon the ark of the covenant (or its symbol) with a new sense of awe and wonder at the messages left us in the Torah .... aloha nui, poh
     

Share This Page