Day 45: Tiferet she’b’Shechinah, Beauty in Presence
In the lore of Kabbalah, Tiferet is a face of the Divine Father. Shechinah is a face of the Divine Mother. When the two come together, God is integrated. All cosmic forces are in alignment.
According to the Zohar, Tiferet and Shechinah connect every Friday evening, just as Shabbat begins. That is the most perfect moment of the week. For an instant, all cosmic forces align. Will we tune in? Even for that instant?
The prophet Zechariah, too, liked the idea of cosmic forces aligning. In times of change, he said, there’s work for God to do and work for us humans to do. God’s job is to arrange local and regional politics so that a good world can come to be. Our job is to be honest in business, live with integrity, and support the vulnerable. When God does one job, and we do the other, peace follows. The whole landscape of the world changes.
Now you might not like Zechariah’s teaching. You might think that God is falling down on God’s job. That the human task is defined too narrowly. Or that calling us to integrity is a sneaky way to blame all of us for the crimes of a few. And you might not be wrong.
But Zechariah’s goal is to give us hope. To tell us that we know what to do. Of course there is much to understand about history, politics, civics, and power. But we don’t have to wait until we have learned it all. We can do the right thing right now.
Because cosmic forces are aligned.
THOUGHT: Do you think there is a realm of spiritual forces that directs what happens in the more tangible world? Why or why not?
FEELING: How do you feel when you contemplate the task Zechariah assigns you? Overwhelmed? Encouraged? Or?
DOING: What does it mean to you to live with integrity? How do you practice that?
GOD: Do you think God actively intervenes in human politics? Do you ever pray for God to do that?
Want to learn more about the prophecies of Zechariah? Here’s an article.
Image: Sunset sky over Little Mountain (Vancouver) by Laura Duhan-Kaplan