Topic: Well Being | Posted:April 27, 2016
Nadab and Avihu, the two sons of Aaron, achieved the level of Acharei Mot, being "after death," the level of having conquered death. How did they conquer death? By feeling death as it was imbued with the Light of the Creator. Therefore, the Zohar says they removed for themselves, and created an opening for all of us to remove, the force of death from our own lives and from the world.
The Zohar explains that there are thirteen channels by which mercy and Light come down into this world. Each one has a name which indicates the Light within, and the seventh one of those thirteen is where life comes from, and is called Ve'emet. The kabbalists teach that when you are able to awaken this aspect of the thirteen attributes called Ve'emet, what happens is called the shining of the face of the Light of the Creator to the individual. In the connection called the Birkat Kohanim, the blessing that is given by the priests to an individual and that we also use to draw blessings, we say, “May the Light of the Creator shine his face towards you.” Those awakenings can only occur through the seventh of the thirteen channels called Ve'emet; and the only way to awaken Ve'emet, the only way to awaken that channel, is by experiencing death and drawing the Light of the Creator into it.
As we know, each one of the Patriarchs is a conduit for a different type of Light. Abraham is the channel for Mercy, Right Column, for example, and Aaron is for awakening peace. And Nadab and Avihu were the channels to awaken the ability to transform Mavet, death, into Ve'Emet, an opening of the force of life.
I want to share something I learned for the first time with Rav Berg, maybe 25 years ago. In the Ten Luminous Emanations, Rav Ashlag speaks about how even after the righteous, those who have truly perfected themselves, leave this world, they don't rest. Even after they leave this world, they continue the process of death. Let’s try to understand what that means. When a righteous person leaves this world and continues the process of elevating his or her soul from one level to the next, he tastes a little bit of the aspect of death until he is ready to go on to the next level. And there are endless levels, because no matter where we are, the Light beyond is endless. The righteous, even after they leave this world, are elevating to a higher level just as they did in their lives in this world every day; every moment for them was an elevation from one level to the next. And within every state of elevation, before every state of elevation, there was a taste of death. They taste that aspect of death every time they have to elevate to another level.
This is one of the secrets of this Shabbat. Really, if you want to know if you are on the path of life, you have to be experiencing death every day. What does that mean? The Desire to Receive for the Self Alone separates us from the Light of the Creator, and the Desire to Share connects us to the Light of the Creator. The vessel that we have is too small to receive the totality of the Light of the Creator, so we have to make that vessel bigger; how do we do that? It's either filled up with the Desire to Receive for the Self Alone or it's filled up with the Light of the Creator. In order to fill it with the Light of the Creator, we have to kill aspects of the Desire to Receive for the Self Alone. As we are killing aspects of the Desire to Receive for the Self Alone, we are, thus, experiencing an aspect of death, are allowing more of the Light of the Creator to enter.
Therefore, if we are able to kill one aspect after the other and understand that the reason we feel pain when we do is because it is a death of the Desire to Receive for the Self Alone, and we welcome the pain and are excited about it, then we bring the Light of the Creator into that death, making it Ve'Emet, awakening the seventh channel, and drawing life to ourselves.