|Na'aseh V'Nishma: Chanukah Spiritual Practices|
|Written by El Ad Eliovson|
“You are My witnesses, a guarantee of HaShem” (Isaiah Chapter 43:10) “Na’aseh v’Nishmah” – Spiritual Practices and their Benefits: The purpose of this column is to introduce
readers to spiritual practices, or ways of performing Mitzvot – that if practiced on an ongoing basis – will grant the person doing them an understanding and/or experiences of the deeper spiritual benefits that we accepted would be there in faith when we said, “Na’aseh v’Nishmah” at Sinai.
In the words of Rav Simcha Weinberg shlitah: “We will do and we will hear,” was not a one time statement, shouted out in a moment of passion. It is a description of how we will observe every Mitzvah/Concept that we perform. We do the Mitzvah and we listen for the message and lesson of the Mitzvah. God speaks to us, trains us and teaches us through His Mitzvot.
It will include a list the spiritual essences associated with the blessings of each night of Chanukah according to Rav Yitzcha Luria, the Arizal.
B) There are thirteen attributes of mercy. The Arizal teaches one should pause and think about the attribute associated with each successive day of Chanukah, when we recite the first blessing, “l’hadleek ner shel Chanukah – to kindle the flame of Chanukah.”
When you say G-d’s name (“Ado-nai”) in the first blessing, pause and simply think about and concentrate on the attribute of mercy listed according to each night of Chanukah below:
C) When you say G-d’s name (“Ado-nai”) in the second blessing, “Sheh’asah Neeseem l’Avotaynu – Who made miracles for our Ancestors,” pause, think about and concentrate on the following Sefirot/attribute of G-d associated with that night of Chanukah as follows:
As with all Moadeem, Chanukah is a special “Time station.”
Versus a “Space Station”, which “floats” in a particular location in Space, a Moed is a vortex of spiritual forces that “floats” in a particular location in Time. (For a beautiful introduction to this concept, see the introduction in the book “Patterns in Time: Rosh Hashana”)
And as with all Moadeem, the particular mitzvot of the holiday are the means through which we can draw forth the spiritual forces of the holiday.
The physical light and the blessings on the menorah serves as a conduit for the spiritual light we invoke/evoke through the performance of Mitzvah.
The kavanot of the second blessing reveal something absolutely amazing: we are climbing the ladder of the Sefirot from the bottom up during the holiday of Chanukah! We are also drawing illumination and strengths from G-d’s attributes of Mercy each night which we invoke during the first blessing.
When we complete the holiday we should come away “full-filled” and fully imbued with an incredible infusion of spiritual Light associated with G-d’s attribute of the sefirah Hod. The power of this Light enables us to function better as the ambassadors of G-d and to serve as the “Priestly Nation” we were intended to be.