Daily Zohar # 2202 – Devarim – The opportunities in the desert
The section above is from Zohar Tezaveh 82,84,85
84. בִּגְלַל שֶׁחָטְאוּ בְּכַמָּה פְעָמִים, נָשַׁךְ אוֹתָם הַנָּחָשׁ, וְאָז הִתְקַיֵּם (בראשית ג) הוּא יְשׁוּפְךָ רֹאשׁ וְגוֹ’. יִשְׂרָאֵל הִכּוּ רֹאשׁוֹ בַתְּחִלָּה וְלֹא יָדְעוּ לְהִשָּׁמֵר מִמֶּנּוּ, וּלְבַסּוֹף הוּא הִכָּה בָאַחֲרוֹנָה, וְנָפְלוּ כֻלָּם בַּמִּדְבָּר, וְהִתְקַיֵּם וְאַתָּה תְּשׁוּפֶנּוּ עָקֵב. וְאַרְבָּעִים שָׁנָה לָקוּ מִמֶּנּוּ, כְּנֶגֶד אַרְבָּעִים מַלְקוֹת שֶׁל בֵּית דִּין
85. וְעַל זֶה כָּתוּב אֲשֶׁר רָאִיתָ, בְּעֵינֵיהֶם הָיוּ רוֹאִים אֶת אֲדוֹן הַמִּדְבָּר הוֹלֵךְ קָשׁוּר לִפְנֵיהֶם, וְלָקְחוּ נַחֲלָתוֹ וְגוֹרָלוֹ. מִנַּיִן לָנוּ? שֶׁכָּתוּב (שמות טו) אָז נִבְהֲלוּ אַלּוּפֵי אֱדוֹם, וְאֵלֶּה הֵם (דברים ח) נָחָשׁ שָׂרָף וְעַקְרָב. וַאֲנַחְנוּ גַּם כָּךְ נִפְרַדְנוּ מֵהַיִּשּׁוּב לַמִּדְבָּר הֶחָזָק לְעַיֵּן שָׁם בַּתּוֹרָה, כְּדֵי לְהַכְנִיעַ אֶת הַצַּד הָאַחֵר
God carried us in the wilderness like a father carrying his son (Deuteronomy 1:31). God gave us the protection of the pillar of fire during the night and clouds of honor during the day. We were protected until we sinned. The Snake and his partners of the other side are very strong in the wilderness. They distracted us from following the Light and the outcome was that the entire generation that left Egypt (age 20 and above) had to die before entering the Promised Land.
This study of the Zohar was done by Rabbi Shimon and his friends while they were walking outside the town. The Zohar explains that when we go out to the desert and study Torah we break the Snake and the other side. The 42 journeys that the Israelites went through in the wilderness provided opportunities for them to reveal Light and break the power of the Snake.
The desert/wilderness is the aspect of lack of Light. For us it’s the aspect of the different challenges we face every day. They give us opportunities to reveal more Light in our lives. Our world of Malchut is like the desert, it doesn’t have Light of its own. With Zohar study and positive sharing actions we reveal Light and break the negativity. The study comes before the action because spiritually is on a higher level. Positive actions are on the level of Malchut and do reveal Light but in most cases it’s limited to the people involved in the action.
Imagine you are in a huge and dark room with other people. If you give a piece of food to a person next to you, you would make him happy and most likely your action may encourage him to do the same and continue sharing. If you light a candle the entire room benefits from it and many people can find food by themselves. It’s an important spiritual principal and that is why it’s important to give maaser (Tithe) to those who reveal Light in your life and the world.