G-d’s Steganography

Friday, 22 July, 2022 - 8:37 am

The chief of MI6, UK’s foreign Intelligence Service, claimed this week that Russia’s espionage capabilities in Europe have been cut in half as a result of the war in Ukraine. Apparently, this is, in large part, due to the expulsion of hundreds of Russian intelligence officers from European countries and the arrest of some spies.

One amazing revelation about modern-day espionage is the hi-tech methodology employed.  As it becomes more and more difficult to snoop, many countries are reportedly resorting to satellite imagery, audio intercepts and unmanned aircraft. I’m not sure if this was impacted. But, the departure of boots on the ground has a major impact on espionage. Despite advances in technology, human spies operating in other countries remains a critical cog in the wheel of surveillance.

One method of sharing information with fellow moles and handlers is steganography, the art of sending hidden messages in such a way that no one, apart from the sender and intended recipient, suspects the existence of the message.  Gone are the days when slaves’ heads were shaved, tattooed and then the hair re-grown to send secret messages.

Modern steganography has progressed significantly.  Texting messages and emails are dangerous ways for spies to communicate in our digital age.  But with fairly simple software, sending a digital photograph via mobile phone can contain an encrypted message that no one else can decode or even suspect.  The images appear benign – my family, cat or dog, or vacation photos – but carry vital, and sometimes treasonous, pieces of information.


Food and animal sacrifices are not a mainstay of modern society. But if we look at the Torah portion of Pinchas, we see that Jewish holidays were all marked in the Temple by specific offerings of vegetables, herbs, oils, wine, and animals.  In fact, our daily prayers correspond to daily offerings brought in the Temple.

Sacrifices occupy an important part of the Torah’s view on the human-to-G-d relationship.  In many instances, the Torah states that the sacrifices served as a “pleasant fragrance for G-d.”

What is the meaning of sacrifices? Is it still relevant in our modern age?

There is much to be said about the philosophical and spiritual meaning of sacrifices.  The Mystics, however, put it very simply.  Deep within the sacrifice exists a spiritual energy that, unbeknownst to the average person, gives G-d tremendous satisfaction.

We can look at it again and again – and all we see is the surface. But, G-d has the software to decode the message. Hashem sees and appreciates the profound and meaningful message, even if we – the deliverers of that message – are oblivious to its meaning. To Hashem, it’s a pleasant fragrance.

Truth be told, every mitzvah contains this energy.  Lighting Shabbat candles is not beautiful only because it brings satisfaction to the woman kindling the flame, or the family enjoying its radiance.  The mitzvah of Friday night lights is a mystical energy that sends a crucial and vibrant message to the Decoder.

Eating a kosher piece of sushi might seem the same as the nonkosher version. But, the code it sends is entirely different.

Next time you feel lacking in inspiration when performing a mitzvah, remember that you are pressing the send button with a secret, critical message to the source and origin of life.

Hopefully, knowing that G-d deeply appreciates your gift will make it more meaningful for you.

Comments on: G-d’s Steganography

Erasmo M Ramos (Ahron) wrote...

Great text. Content and form are really excellent. There is a lot hidden in this universe. It is not only a matter of the secret. Mankind is lacking the capacity of seeing. Slowly things are improving. Messianic times! Great job!