I personally have had the blessing of studying with Rebbetzin Chana Bracha Siegelbaum. She is a great mentor, versed in the Kabbalah and has a yeshiva for women in Beit Ayin, Israel. She has brought so much light into my life with her classes and her weekly writings, so I wanted to share a piece of her work and her website with you. (berotbatayin.org)
Parasha Meditation Shemot Shemot 1:1-6:1 By Rebbetzin Chana Bracha Siegelbaum
The Five Leaved Bush of Light
Introduction: The Burning Bush and Our Spiritual Growth When our redeemer Moshe Rabbeinu was eighty years old, and out in the desert shepherding the sheep of his father-in-law, Yitro, he noticed a strange phenomenon. As he looked closer he received his first revelation from Hashem at the Burning Bush: ספר שמות פרק ג ב( ַויֵָּרא ַמ ְל ַא� ַה ֵשם ֵא ָליו ְבּ ַל ַבּת ֵאשׁ ִמתּוֹ� ַה ְסּנֶה ַויְַּרא ְו ִהנֵּה ַה ְסּנֶהבֵֹּער ָבּ ֵאשׁ ְו ַה ְסּנֶה ֵאינֶנּוּ ֻא ָכּל: ג(ַויֹּאֶמרמֶשׁהאָֻסָרהנָּאְוֶאְרֶאהֶאתַהַמְּרֶאהַהָגּדֹלַהזֶּהַמדּוַּע�איְִבַערַהְסּנֶה:ד(ַויְַּראַהֵשםִכּיָסרִלְראוֹתַויְִּקָראֵאָליוֱא�ִהיםִמתּוֹ�ַהְסּנֶהַויֹּאֶמרמֶשׁהמֶשׁהַויֹּאֶמרִהנֵּנִי:
“The angel of Hashem appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of the bush; and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, but the bush was not consumed. Moshe said: ‘I will turn aside now, and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt.’ When Hashem saw that he turned aside to see, G*d called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said: ‘Moshe, Moshe.’ and he said: "Hear am I." 2 The word ַה ְסּנֶה /HaSneh –“the bush,” is mentioned for the first time in the Torah at the beginning of the Book of Shemot, where it appears five times. This corresponds to the beginning of the Book of Bereishit where the word אוֹר/“Ohr” – “Light” also appears five times.
ספר בראשית פרק א ג( יּ ֹא ֶמר ֱא� ִהים יְ ִהי אוֹר ַויְ ִהי אוֹר: ד(ַויְַּראֱא�ִהיםֶאתָהאוֹרִכּיטוֹבַויְַּבֵדּלֱא�ִהיםֵבּיןָהאוֹרוֵּביןַהחֶשׁ�:ה(ַויְִּקָראֱא�ִהיםָלאוֹריוֹםְוַלחֶשׁ�ָקָראָליְָלהַויְִהיֶעֶ
“G*d said: ‘Let there be light.’ And there was light. And G*d saw the light that it was good; and G*d divided the light from the darkness. G*d called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. There was evening and there was morning, one day.”
The Five Lights of the Bush Corresponding to the Five Emotions of the Heart
The burning fire of the bush emanated from the original light “Ohr HaGanuz” that Hashem hid away for the tzadikim to enjoy in the coming world.
Moshe’s first experience of these five lights represented by the five times the word ַה ְסּנֶה /HaSneh – “the bush,” is mentioned, corresponds to the five primary emotions of the heart. They reflect the five emotional sefirot corresponding to the Five Founding Fathers:
Chesed – ֶח ֶסד (Loving-kindness)
Gevurah – ְגּבוּ ָרה , (Courage/Awe) Tiferet – ִתּ ְפ ֶא ֶרת (Beauty/Compassion)
Netzach – נֵ ַצח (Confidence/Victory)
Hod – הוֹד (Sincerity/Acknowledgment)
Avraham Yitzchak Ya’acov Moshe Aharon Hod is the temimut – simplicity – walking simply with G*d with dedication and thanksgiving acknowledging G*d’s eternal presence.
Redemption in the Merit of the Fivefold Unity of Souls מדרש רבה שמות פרשה ב פסקה ה ר’ נחמן בנו של ר’ שמואל בר נחמן אומר כל האילנות יש מהן עושה עלה אחת ויש מהן שתים או שלש הדס עושה שלש שנקרא )ויקרא כג( עץ עבות אבל הסנה יש לו ה’ עלין א”ל הקב”ה למשה אין ישראל נגאלין אלא בזכות אברהם יצחק ויעקב ובזכותך ובזכות אהרן: Rabbi Nachman son of Rabbi Shemuel son of Nachman says, of all the trees, there are some that produce one leaf [from the same point], and there are those who produce two or three. The myrtle produces three leaves [that emerge from the same point]. It is called “a thick-leaved tree.”5 However, ַה ְסּנֶה – the bush, has five leaves [that emerge from the same point]. Hashem told Moshe, “Israel is only redeemed in the merit of Avraham, Yitzchak, and Ya’acov, and in your merit and in the merit of Aharon your brother.” The Burning Bush with its five leaves emerging from one common source relates to Hashem’s message to Moshe to propel him to become the redeemer of the Jewish people, taking them out of bondage. In order to successfully emerge from exile you have to have the merit of five souls. Avraham, Yitzchak, Ya’acov, the patriarchs correspond to the three leaves of the myrtle tree. The additional tzadikim that have to be connected and combined with the first three are Moshe and his brother Aharon. Only by joining all five of these souls together can redemption take place.
The Five Fingers of Hashem’s Redemptive Hand The bush, initially, before it even takes on fire, represents these five emerging from one point, like five fingers emerging from the same hand. It is this hand of G*d which will redeem Israel from Egypt.7
The Ten Plagues correspond to the two hands. They reappear afterwards in the Ten Commandments, on the Two Tablets representing five fingers of two hands. The secret of Exodus is the secret of five. The first phenomenon of five is the five lights of creation. Torah itself is light, the Five Books of Moshe – the five revelations of Divinity – become even more potent and physically manifest in the Burning Bush.
1.This meditation is a transcription and annotation of Rabbi Ginsburgh’s audio lecture from <http://www.inner.org/audio/lectures/parsha/shemot.htm>.
2 Shemot 3:2-4. 3 Bereishit 1:3-5. 4 Rashi, Bereishit 1:4
5 Vayikra 23:40. 6 Midrash Rabah, Shemot parasha 2, piskah 5. 7 See Shemot 13:3