Day 4

Week 1: Ushpizin

Day 4: Moses

Here we are at the mid-point, day four, and our ‘guest’ is none other than Moses. This fourth of the ushpizin is placed at the Sefirah of Netzach.

Some quick notes on this fourth Sefirah:

• Netzach is the first of the ‘lower triad’ of Sefirot (Netzach, Hod, Yesod) known by the acronym ‘NeHiY.’ This triad deals with more with relationship with our fellow humans (as opposed to CHaGaT (Chesed, Gevurah, Tiferet) which is more focused ‘upward.’)
• Netzach ‘descends’ from Chesed above it on the right side of the Tree of Life. Thus Moses shares a similar ‘proactive’ nature as Abraham (at Chesed).
• As Chesed is paired with Gevurah (on the left), Netzach is paired with Hod, on the left. Netzach and Hod are called ‘the wings of Yesod.’ As they deal directly with how we ‘walk’ in this world, these two Sefirot are also depicted as ‘legs’ that work together.
• Netzach has many meanings including “victory” (nitzachon), “eternity” (nitzchiyut) and “orchestration” (nitzuach). These relate to initiative, persistence and overcoming.

Another pair working together as one were Moses and Aaron. Netzach corresponds to Moses, and Hod to Aaron. Netzach relates to the proactive force of the prophet while Hod is the contemplativeness and responsiveness of the priest. They are the ‘wings’ to every individual within Israel, providing the cycle of motion to keep us moving forward toward the Image of G-d (B’tzelem Elohim).

Moshe functioned from a “Think Win-Win” perspective with regard to what G-d desired and the long-term plan. We will mark the four steps within this text.

Numbers 14:11-19: The LORD said to Moses, “How long will these people treat me with contempt? How long will they refuse to believe in me, in spite of all the miraculous signs I have performed among them? I will strike them down with a plague and destroy them, but I will make you into a nation greater and stronger than they.”

(A.) Moses said to the LORD, “Then the Egyptians will hear about it! By your power you brought these people up from among them. And they will tell the inhabitants of this land about it. They have already heard that you, O LORD, are with these people and that you, O LORD, have been seen face to face, that your cloud stays over them, and that you go before them in a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night.

(B.) If you put these people to death all at one time, the nations who have heard this report about you will say, ‘The LORD was not able to bring these people into the land he promised them on oath; so he slaughtered them in the desert.

(C.)’ “Now may the Lord’s strength be displayed, just as you have declared: ‘The LORD is slow to anger, abounding in love and forgiving sin and rebellion. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation.’

(D.) In accordance with your great love, forgive the sin of these people, just as you have pardoned them from the time they left Egypt until now.”

The quality of Netzach in your soul is dependent upon the degree of confidence you have that you are doing what G-d wants of you. It’s a lot easier to be pro-active when you know your destination and your source are one – like Moses did.