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The Mysteries of the Sea

Friday, 29 March, 2013 - 1:00 pm

"Everything that exists on land also exists in the sea,” states the Talmud.

Shortly after their Exodus from Egypt, the Jewish people were faced with a dilemma. Pharaoh was chasing after them and the mighty sea was standing before them. Miraculously, the sea split and the Jews traveled through to safety while the Egyptian army drowned in the raging waters that came crashing upon them.

The Talmud also states that the Jewish people witnessed a revelation of G-dliness unparalleled by even the prophet Yechezkel/Ezekiel. Is there perhaps a connection between witnessing the hidden depths of the sea and experiencing a divine revelation?

The mystics teach that the depths of the sea represent the “Hidden Worlds.” This means that the Children of Israel experienced on that historic night not only the exposure of the seabed, but of great spiritual mysteries.

In life, we usually only notice the “Revealed Worlds.” But lying beneath the surface is a hidden universe. The hidden universe, the kabbalists note, is loftier than the revealed.

We may feel the pain of misfortune or notice the darkness of challenges. We can revel in momentary pleasures and seek all types of material satisfaction. But at a deeper level, we cannot know what lurks beneath the surface.

On that night the Jews knew the mysteries of the universe.

***

Our Sages teach that in every generation – indeed every day – we ought to consider as if we left Egypt ourselves. Now, we may not be able to sense the spiritual glory that the Jews of yesteryear were privy to. But perhaps we can find ways to be more sensitive to occurrences and individuals.  Maybe we can stop for a moment and recognize that there is something beneath the surface that is grander than what meets the eye.

And, if that attitude and perspective motivates us to be kinder, more dedicated, more faithful and perform more good deeds – then we too have left Egypt.

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