Posted on Sep 8, 2019 | 3 comments

Elul Day 9


Perhaps the most dramatic experience that happens atop Mt. Sinai is when Moses asks to meet G-d face to face: “I beg you, show me your glory.” (Exodus 33:18).

G-d responds, “You cannot see My face, for no man can see Me and live… I will put you in a cleft of the rock, and will cover you with My hand while I pass by, and I will take away My hand, and you shall see My back…”

This exchange is puzzling. How could Moses not have known that one can only come face-to-face with G-d in the next world?  And why does the Torah document G-d’s rejection of his request?

The answer is that Moses’ request was not rejected. In the language of metaphor Moses asked to understand G-d. G-d responded by saying that it is impossible to see His essence in this world, but it is possible to see its reflection. In effect, G-d told Moses, “you’ll see My face by not looking.”

There are things we see in life by looking directly at them, and there are things we see with our eyes closed. There are things that we hold onto by grasping them, and things that we hold onto by letting go.

Creative people know that when they let go that is when the creativity starts flowing. When they try to control it or force it, it doesn’t come—the channels of creativity are blocked. For creativity to emerge requires letting go. The same thing is true of “seeing G-d.”

G-d said to Moses, in effect, “You will see Me when you stop looking. You will see Me when you get yourself out of the way.

Ask yourself: How often can you get yourself out of the way to achieve a higher goal? Do you “see” G-d in your life? Have you learned to see by not looking?

Exercise for the day:

– Recall an event in your life when you were able to gain something by letting go.
– Examine the process—how did you get yourself out of the way in order to make it happen?

excerpt from Rabbi Jacobson – The Meaningful Life

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  1. 9-12-2016

    I don’t like that you don’t spell out the word God. You typed G-d instead of God. We should always call God God, NOT G-d.
    I personally feel it is very disrespectful and dishonering to refer to God as G-D.

    • 9-12-2016

      Actually Lily, since that excerpt was taken from Rabbi Jacobson, and this is the way he spelled it, I respected him by repeating it as he wrote it. That being said, the Holy One’s name really isn’t God at all – that word, in Hebrew simply means Elohim (gods/god/lord/master) … it is a title, not His true name. Unfortunately, since languages evolve, and we have no recording of how Moshe would have actually and precisely pronounced His name, we are left with many variations. What we do know is that the tetragrammoton (YHWH) is as correct as we can get…how to SAY it…well, I prefer Abba. 🙂

  2. 9-2-2017

    Pamela that was a wonderful response to the comment made about His Name .
    Like yourself I mostly call Him Abba because He reveals Himself to me many times as my Abba. Praise His Name.

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