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Three Mirror Images

Updated on September 11, 2010

Three reflections of G-d's realm

THE TEMPLE

There was a temple here on this earth and the only remains of it is the Western Wall in Jerusalem. It has the nickname of the wailing wall because of all the heartfelt prayers of the Jewish nation praying there. Why is this place so important?

This place has tremendous spritual power. The heavenly and earthly realms are mirror images at some points and so at these points there is a great spiritual strength. The temple is just one spot. How do we know this? In the book of Isaiah in Chapter 6.

Isaiah 6:1 says, "In the year of King Uzziah's death, I saw the L-rd sitting upon a high and lofty throne, and its legs filled the Temple."

Isaiah 6:5 says, "Then I said, 'Woe is me, for I am doomed: for I am a man of impure lips and I dwell among a people with impure lips, for my eyes have seen the King, HaShem, Master of Legion."

From these scriptures we know that the two temples are link together as the tabernacle was linked to the heavenly temple in Moshe's day.

In the special place of the Holy of Holies, or in Hebrew Kodesh HaKodeshim, which more literally means the most seperated of seperated places, implying sperated unto the Almighty. In this spot sat the Ark of the Covenant and on the top it had a figure of two Cherubim, which are a type of angel and at the spot of the two angels it is call the mercy seat.

TEFILLIN

In Judaism there is a tenent of faith. It is refered to as the Shema. It is Deuteronomy 6:4, and it says, "Hear, O Israel: HaShem is our G-d, HaShem, the One and Only. Then there is a series of passages that are recited which are Deutronomy 6:5-9, Deutronomy 11:13-21, Numbers 15:37-41, and others that follow. This is recited at least twice a day and sometimes three times depending on the observe level.

Tefillin is mentioned in the passages above, It is said in the relevant portions of the Shema relating how we are to love HaShem. Tefillin is basically black leather boxes, that a man binds on his arm and ties it down onto his hand and the other one is bound on the head. One can see pictures of this in movies related to Judaism.

In these black leather boxes are written the passages mentioned above. These passages express how we are to love HaShem (G-d), and it Midrash (exegesis of our tradition) state that HaShem Himself puts on Tefillin except the difference is that His pair has words that relate to how loves us.

One should consult their local Rabbi about Tefillin if they desire to learn more or if they desire to wear Tefillin. It is a strong connection to the divine and I absolutely enjoy binding mine. However, it is mentioned in Judaism that they are a sign of the covenant between HaShem and the Jew.

TALIT

The Talit is mentioned in the Shema section of the daily Jewish prayers. There is a mentioned in Midrash (exegesis) that states that HaShem showed Moshe how to pray and he did this by wrapping Himself up in the Talit.

Aryeh Kaplan makes mention of the Tzitzith on pg 53 of "Tzitzith a thread of light". He quotes the tractate in Rosh HaShanah 17b which says, "Rabbi Yochanan said: if it were not written (in the Bible) it would be impossible to say. But we are taught that G-d wrapped Himself (in a Tallit) like a prayer leader and showed Moses the order of prayer. He said, "Whenever Israel sins, let them proceed in this manner , and I will forgive them." Talmud, Rosh HaShanah 17b.

Now what is a Talit? A Talit is basically a four corner garment with special fringes (Tzitzith) on each of the corners. The fringes have a special wrap to them so that it represents the 613 biblical commandments of the Torah.

There are two types of Talits. There is what is called the Talit Gedol, which is one that a person can pretty much wrap himself up in while they pray. The second type is a Talit Kattan, and this is one that is worn all day long underneath the regular shirt. The most important is the commandment, and the commandment is not the garment but the actual Tzitzith.

Now for a unique perspective on the Talit. A Talit or prayer shawl is composed of the Hebrew Letters which are transliterated as TLYT. (There are no vowels in Hebrew, except to teach a none native speaker the language) The suffix of "it", or "yt" is a diminunative, which means that it makes it smaller. So from this word Talit it has a perspective of being something small. What could that be? The closest word is Talyah (TLYH) which means a lamb. A lamb is a type of sacrificial animal in ancient times and is related to the passover story. The Jews were comanded to slaugther the lamb and put the blood of the lamb on the doorpost and then to eat the lamb. Then the angel of death would passover the house, and this was a covering for them. Therefore, the lamb (Talyah) is a covering, and the prayer shawl (Talit, or little sheep) is used to cover onself when praying for the covering of the Almighty. Just a little insight.

However, please consult a local Rabbi for more information, and the the proper use of a Talit if one has the desire to wrap themselves in one during prayer since there are culture rules on what is the correct way to use the Talit.

 

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