It’s now Shushan Purim, the 15th day of Adar, as I write this. The Jewish people in Shushan were given an extra day (the 14th of Adar) to destroy their enemies, and they rested on the 15th.
We Jews live a precarious existence. In the Passover Hagaddah we say, “Not only one (enemy) stood against us to finish us off, but in every generation they (the enemies of the Jewish people) stand against us to finish us off. But the Holy One blessed be He saves us from their hands.”
We raise a cup of wine when we proclaim this. It’s a toast to the reality of the danger, and the reality of G-d’s protection.
The days between Purim and Passover signify salvation and redemption. Purim reminds us that, while we are still in exile, the Almighty protects His people, ensuring that our enemies don’t finish us off. The Jewish nation will exist forever. And Passover signifies our ultimate Redemption, a time when it will be “completely Sabbath.” Just as we rest on Sabbath, the seventh day of Creation, so too we will rest at the time of our redemption. And as the prophet says, “Just as in the days when you left Egypt, I will show you wonders.”
What will it be like at the time of our redemption? We will rest, but what will be really special then? The prophets tell us. They describe a time when “Your Master will no longer hide, you will see your Master.”
How can we see G-d? Moses was told that “Man cannot see Me and remain alive.”
G-d is so great, that the entire world was created, and is constantly recreated, with His one word. When we drink a cup of water, we bless “G-d, our Lord, King of the world, Who creates everything with His word.” Just one word is all He needs to create the universe and to keep it existing.
So if everything is created by just His one word, then G-d Himself is way beyond our wildest imagination to try to fathom Him. So how can we see Him?
I think the answer is (as I remember how Chasidus explains this) that when we look at the world, at events, especially miraculous events, and when we think carefully and deeply about the wonder and miracle of life, we “see” Him.
Chasidus explains that the highest comes down into the lowest. G-d created many spiritual worlds, including worlds with angels, and levels of Gan Eden (the spiritual Garden of Eden) where souls repose, basking in and enjoying revelations of G-dliness. But it is in this lowly, physical world, where G-d seems absent, that we can find Him, and “see” Him.
When we do a Mitzvah (fulfill His commandment), such as saying “Shema Yisroel — Hear oh Israel, G-d our G-d, G-d is One” morning and evening, and we ponder how G-d is One with everything, and we internalize this concept to the point that it becomes very real to us, and we become aware and recognize His presence in everything, in every occurrence, in this world, and our body and soul understand and feel this concept, this reality, then we “see” Him.
And the same is with every Mitzvah that we do, and every Torah thought that we study. Our body becomes one with His Holiness, and our wisdom becomes one with His. And when this permeates our awareness, vis-a-vis the world around us, then we “see” Him.
These days we are seeing many miracles (I wrote about just some of them in previous posts). And one day very soon we will see the most remarkable miracle of all, with the complete Redemption, when we, and the entire world will become aware of His Presence, and as the prophet says, the entire world “will serve Him with one shoulder.” May it happen now.