“טוֹב נִקְלֶה, וְעֶבֶד לוֹ– מִמִּתְכַּבֵּד, וַחֲסַר-לָחֶם”
“Better is he who is humble and has a slave Than he who honors himself and lacks bread.”
Before continuing with the study I want to pause here and say thank God for leading us to the study of the Zohar. Thank God for Rabbi Shimon, the Holy Ari, Rabbi Ashlag and all the great Kabbalists that reveal and teach us the secrets of the Torah and Bible.
I usually check for English translations of Bible verses on Biblehub.com. They show all the different Bible translations one next to the other. In most of the cases and pick one translation and edit it to be closer to the quoted verse.
Proverbs were written by the King Solomon that is considered “the wisest man that ever lived”. There is only one version in Hebrew because it is the source but I found in the above link 20 different English translations plus one commentary explaining the verse;
“He that lives in a humble state, who has no one to wait upon him, but gets bread by his own labour, is happier than he that glories in high birth or gay attire, and wants necessaries.”
The most important thing for us to learn from this is that beyond going into the depth and true meaning of the verse, the Zohar provides the opening and the light energy to achieve the spiritual level discussed in the study.
Now we go back to the Zohar study.
Rabbi Shimon quoted the above verse and explains that the other side with the Evil Inclination pushes people to raise their ego until they lose themselves and are led to the lower levels of negativity called ‘hell’. Bread is the aspect of faith in God and connection to the Shechina that sustains our soul like bread sustains the body.
Those who are humble and follow the path of light are able to control the negative side and make it as their slave.
“וַיִּשְׁלַח יַעֲקֹב מַלְאָכִים לְפָנָיו, אֶל-עֵשָׂו אָחִיו, אַרְצָה שֵׂעִיר, שְׂדֵה אֱדוֹם.”
“And Jacob sent messengers (Angels) before him to Esau his brother in the land of Seir, the country of Edom,”
Rabbi Aba said that Jacob didn’t fear Esau because he had the Shechinah with him and also his father was still alive. For honoring his father Jacob didn’t ignore the situation. He humbled himself and sent angels to his brother.
“יַעַבְדוּךָ עַמִּים, וישתחו (וְיִשְׁתַּחֲווּ) לְךָ לְאֻמִּים–הֱוֵה גְבִיר לְאַחֶיךָ, וְיִשְׁתַּחֲווּ לְךָ בְּנֵי אִמֶּךָ; אֹרְרֶיךָ אָרוּר, וּמְבָרְכֶיךָ בָּרוּךְ.”
“May many nations become your servants, and may they bow down to you. May you be the master over your brothers, and may your mother’s sons bow down to you. All who curse you will be cursed, and all who bless you will be blessed.””
Even though Jacob received great blessings from his father, he knew that it wasn’t his time to completely control the negative side. His sons needed to grow and go through a process until the Final Redemption.
Lesson: To have control in our lives we need to humble ourselves and let the blessings of God come to us at the time they intended to be revealed. Some of humility and work may not be revealed in this life but definitely at the time of the Final Redemption when it is most important because the big reward is the Resurrection and immortality.