Parshat Naso: Honoring our faithfulness to God’s love

Let’s reflect on the passages of this portion regarding the faithfulness between a married couple (Numbers 5:12-15). Faithfulness is actually the foundation of any relationship, and also the foundation of the social establishment in which one lives. If there is no trust and reliability among people and their institutions, there is corruption, unrest and conflict. No wonder the hefty budget devoted to law enforcement in most civilized countries. Faithfulness indeed has a price that we are willing to pay because from it depends what we trust, cherish, appreciate, value and love the most.

We pay to be safe and to receive goods and services that we need in order to have peace and tranquility in our individual and collective environment. If we compel ourselves to pay for trust, confidence, faithfulness, loyalty and reliability in order to feel safe and secure in the material world, how much would we be willing to do in order to secure our relationship with God? How much does it cost to have Him close to us always in our lives? The price is faithfulness.

It takes something more to be close to God than paying taxes to rely on government services such as law enforcement and social security, because our relationship with Him is priceless, and beyond any social contracts. However, either we want it or not, our relationship with Him is bound to our relationship with each other in our surroundings: “Tell the children of Israel: When a man or woman commits any of the sins against man to act treacherously against God (…)” (5:6).

We love each other because we love God. God’s Love is our Essence and common bond with Him and with each other here in the material world. In this context Love is the faithfulness that we have for each other because we know that if the ways and attributes of Love are not present, we are not safe, secured, protected or cared for. Love is the foundation of our faithfulness in anything we want to be, to have, and to do. We are faithful to Love because we must have to be faithful with the Essence of who we are.1

Under the consumer society we live in we have to pay for anything that makes us feel safe, secured and protected. We humans have created such darkness that we have to pay in order to stay away from the harm, perils and dangers that we have created! It’s an irony that we create negative conditions and pay to stay away from them, and we do it for the sake of money.

We create addictions, distractions and unhealthy conditions and later pay to free ourselves from them. It’s outrageous what ego’s fantasies and illusions can create in order to keep us in darkness and negativity. Yet we seem to be more faithful to ego’s materialistic desires than to Love’s ways and attributes. We rather allow the negative current state of affairs and the consumer society’s establishment to rule over us than allowing the positive qualities of Love as our Essence and true identity.

Let’s reflect on the meanings of faithfulness the Torah points out when it mentions the respect and loyalty man owes to woman, and woman to man. As we already said, we owe faithfulness to each other as we owe faithfulness to our God. He commands us to be faithful with each other because it is about the same faithfulness He wants from us to Him. In this context we must be faithful and loyal to the principles that define our Jewish identity. Otherwise, we cheat, deceit and betray ourselves. We most be aware that when one is unfaithful to his values and to whom he commits his loyalty, he is unfaithful to himself.

God wants us to be faithful for our own sake, not His. God’s Love for us is our true reference, the real foundation of our consciousness. This means that as long as we are faithful to His ways and attributes as the guidelines and ground rules for what we are, have and do, we are faithful to ourselves. Faithfulness is really about us as individuals because that’s the only way that we can commit to faithfulness, truthfulness and loyalty to others.

We cheat or betray others’ trust and faithfulness when we change the “rules of the game” in our relationship with them. If our rules are solid and strong as the true foundation of our consciousness, they will remain solid and strong regardless the change of others’ rules. This is a practical way to say that Love does not cohabit with anything different than its ways and attributes. As long as we remain faithful, loyal and committed to Love’s ways in what we are and do, we are faithful to our identity as the Torah defines it for us.

In a higher level, in terms of man-woman relationship, let’s be aware that both male and female contain polarities inherent to each other, and they form a unity. We have to evolve to the higher awareness that we are materially separated as male and female in order to be united for the sacred purpose called life and its multiple facets and dimensions. Mystic Sages conceive the harmonic union of both polarities as the whole purpose of God’s Creation for us to fulfill.

For centuries we have fought against such purpose by generating confrontation and conflict among our two polarities. We have been blind to the clear evidence that in the union of both life is conceived, and with the constructive cooperation of both we elevate, enhance and consecrate life for a higher purpose than those of ego’s negative fantasies and illusions. 

We are here in the material world to harmonize our male and female aspects of consciousness in order to consecrate life for the higher purpose of Love’s ways and attributes. We accomplish this by being and doing such ways and attributes. There is no other way and there is no other purpose.

What we label as negative, harmful or destructive among our male and female polarities comes from our own negative approach. There is nothing negative in being a man or a woman, because we all share traits and qualities from both polarities. It does not make sense to stigmatize or undermine something that is part of us. Our dilemma is that so far we have not been able to harmonize them. 

We all are born with different proportions of both polarities, and it is our individual and collective duty to balance and harmonize them with the purpose of recreating life as the product of the male and female union. Since we are born we are destined to be united in order to maintain and expand life. We do that by honoring, respecting and committing to each other’s well being through Love’s ways and attributes. Let’s get truly acquainted with the male and female aspects of our human consciousness, by appreciating, respecting and honoring their traits and qualities as positive means to rectify the negative direction we have given them in the past. 

We need to know what we were made as men and women from the positive perspective that God’s Love gives us as our true Essence and identity: Love. Let’s be faithful to Love as the Essence that get us closer to each other with the purpose of being happy and content with each other, because God’s Love created us to discover such purpose. Once we clear the darkness we have created in the world with the Light of Love’s ways and attributes, we realize the purpose of our true identity in the material world.

About the Author
Ariel Ben Avraham was born in Colombia (1958) from a family with Sephardic ancestry. He studied Cultural Anthropology in Bogota, and lived twenty years in Chicago working as a radio and television producer and writer. He emigrated to Israel in 2004, and for the last fourteen years has been studying the Chassidic mystic tradition, about which he writes and teaches. Based on his studies, he wrote his first book "God's Love" in 2009. He currently lives in Zefat.
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