Week 1: Ushpizin
Day 5: Aaron
Just as Isaac has less written about him than his father or his son, Aaron is also a bit of a mysterious figure, living ‘in the shadow’ of Moses. It seems we need to squeeze a little harder to get insights into Isaac and Aaron, which correlates to them both being on the left side of the Tree of Life, the side of restriction.
We encounter Aaron for the first time in Exodus 4:14, where G-d says this to Moses:
“Is not Aaron the Levite thy brother? I know that he can speak well.”
Thus, the first concept associated with Aaron is ‘good communication.’
There’s more to this skill than just talking however. Being a good communicator involves an equal measure of being a good listener. It is a bit odd that although communication may be the most important skill in life, we spend years learning how to read, write and speak, but not much on listening.
The Sefirah of Hod correlates to Aaron who complements Moses at Netzach. Hod is a complex Sefirah. Being on the left side, it has the aspects of; measurement, restriction, reflection, and contemplation.
It also carries the idea of ‘reverberation’ – when a sound or signal is reflected. We can relate this to the communication technique of “bouncing ideas off of each other” to come to an agreed upon course of action.
Aaron was known for his skill at getting people to resolve their differences:
“Aaron, however, loved peace and pursued peace and made peace between man and man, as it is written, The law of truth was in his mouth, unrighteousness was not found in his lips, he walked with Me in peace and uprightness and did turn many away from iniquity.”
– Talmud, Sanhedrin 6b
What enable Aaron to do this was the skill of, ‘Seek first to understand, then to be understood.’