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Pekudei: From Darkness to Light

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Description

This week’s Torah reading brings us to the end of the Book of Exodus, the second of the Five Books of Moses. And its message couldn’t be more relevant today – with the Middle East experiencing its own “exodus” from oppression. This new “exodus” has now consumed the entire region, bringing on tectonic shifts that will forever change the future of the region and the world.

But today’s “exodus” did not begin a few weeks ago in Tunisia – it began some 3300 year ago, and the Book of Exodus, which documents the process and method of achieving freedom back then, offers us much direction how to do so today.

Following its description of Egyptian bondage, the Book of Exodus gives an account of the redemption of the Jewish people, the miraculous parting of the sea, and the dramatic encounter with God at Mount Sinai. Finally it concludes (this week) with the inauguration of the Sanctuary, nearly a year after the flight from Egypt.

These four major events – the Exodus, the Sea, Mount Sinai and the Sanctuary – are the four pillars which define the path to freedom now and always. Especially in cataclysmic times of upheaval, these pillars serve as secure bearings that can help us find our way amidst chaos.

This sermon explains what each pillar/stage means in the psycho-spiritual progress of humanity and in our personal lives as we move from darkness to light. Conscious life (as we know it) is a state of darkness, and we must search for light and for meaning. When the divine light shines, everything knows its place in the big picture. Everything feels part of one integral whole. One man cannot raise arms against another man for each senses that we are all one.

That is what we are working toward. It is our purpose to reveal the light and transform the very darkness of matter into a luminous source of spiritual energy … in this way creating a divine home in the lowest of worlds.

All of history up to this point is the story of this process, including the events unfolding today in the Middle East. This the true inside story …

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