The First Three Months

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The twenty fifth day of Kislev, Chanukah, is exactly three months from the twenty fifth day of Elul which according to the tanna Rebbi Eliezer, is the date of day one of the creation of the heaven and the earth. Six days later, on the first of Tishrie, Rosh Hashanah, the sixth day of creation is the creation of Adam. This creation of Adam on Rosh Hashanah, Rabanu Tam explains (Tos: Rosh Hashanah 27a, the heading “according to which opinion to we follow”) is not a physical creation but rather a conceptual creation. Rabanu Tam’s words are; “In Tishrie it went up on the Thought of G-d to create but the actual creation was not till Nissan”.

We now understand that The Jewish Year at Rosh Hashanah, the first set of three months before Chanukah, begins in the realm of thought, the thought of G-d, which is way beyond our conscious mind. (We of course always pray with all our heart, and with a perfect and clear consciousness; especially on Rosh Hashanah, however this is only our conscious effort to affect The Will of G-d).

As we progress through the Jewish Year, this first set of three months (from the twenty fifth of Elul till the twenty fifth of Kislev-Chanukah), mainly encompasses our reading of the First Book of The Torah, Berashis. The Vilna Gaon tells us that Berashis correlates to the development of the Yud of G-d’s Name which denotes “Chochmah”, Wisdom. Though this development of the Yud culminates at Chanukah, till Chanukah however, during these first three months of the year, how this new light of Chochmah will manifest itself and the form it will begin to take can still be affected by our prayers. From Chanukah onwards during the next set of three months, this level of thought, from beyond this world, now reaching to this world as only pure light, will slowly take form into a physical reality.

The star character in our Torah reading as we approach Chanukah, is Yoseph whom the Torah calls “Yaphet Tohar” “beautiful form”. Yoseph is this actual light as Rashi quotes the Gomorrah calling Yoseph the Lihavah-the flame of the Menorah. This is light from heaven which now at Chanukah has the potential to reach our conscious mind, and bring new form to this physical world. (“Potentially”, being that in order for us to merit this new light we must do teshuvah).

Our reading of the second Book of The Torah, Shemoth, the Gaon tells us correlates to the Second Letter of G-d’s Name, the Hey-Bina, Understanding. The reading of Shemoth encompasses the majority of the second set of three months which finishes at the twenty fifth of Adar. The twenty fifth of Adar is also a day one of creation making Rosh Chodesh Nissan, the sixth day of creation also to be the date of the creation of Adam. As we learned, Rosh Hashanah six days from the twenty fifth of Elul begins the creation of Adam in concept, and then six months later at Rosh Chodesh Nissan six days from the twenty fifth of Adar begins the creation of Adam in to physical reality. We will therefore be ready with our culmination of our reading of the Book of Shemoth to begin a new physical reality here in this world.