Bless the Holy One, oh my Soul!
Notes from Torah Study 11-7-15
Location: Dan & Laurie’s
After jumping around and struggling through some early psalms, 11-13, the energy enlivened when Laurie took us into Psalm 104 (which we had partially visited the first Torah study this year, when Larry brought us to this psalm). Some scattered, mostly unedited, notes from the psalms discussed:
Ps 11:2 “ .. . the upright of heart” (yish’ray lev)
· Buber’s “I-Thou”
· David is in I-Thou relationship with Hashem, whereas his wicked advisors say flee
· Indigenous – make decisions from the heart. Feeling informs thinking – anterior cingulate of brain has feeling cells and decision making cells
· Sufi – heart guide
Ps 12:3: “ . . . they speak from a double heart (Hebrew: lev va’lev)
· 2 hearts = insincere heart
· Zalman translation: with smooth talk, but their heart is not with what they say with their mouth
Ps 12:7: “like silver refined in the finest smelting earth, clarified sevenfold”
· Process – we’re about process, refining ourselves
· Why silver? Silver is soft
· Gold is gold when you see it. Silver ore does not look like silver – must refine it
· This is the human process of understanding the word of YHVH – the process of refinement through the lower 7 sefirot
· Such refinement is an indigenous process
Psalm 13:3 “ . . . melancholy in my heart (l’vav) even by day?”
Is your heart in l’vav (2 bets, 2 houses, divided heart) or in lev (one house – lev ta’hor , pure heart)
Ps 104:1: “Bless YHVH, my Soul” (barchi nahfshi et YHVH)
· The psalm first speaks to YHVH, then about YHVH
· How many references are made to the soul?
· This psalm was recited on the New Moon – huge for our indigenous-minded people, reminding ourselves regarding all aspects of nature
104:4: Who makes the winds (spirits; ruchot) his messengers (angels; m’lachim), the flaming fire His servants”
In Hebrew Earth-mind (indigenous mind), the primal elements are in service to YHVH
These beings speak from the depth of my being
Process being in the heart: Lev (pure in heart) L’vav (divided heart) – throughout Tanach these 2 words are used to mean heart, and this difference between them, pure vs divided/troubled
This came forth from the lev of David
Earlier psalms were of oppression, fear à now of joy and awe and gratitude – a map for our lives
There is a theme throughout this psalm: honor Spirit and earth will give back to you.
God us “up there” and you get all this “down here”. If the interaction is correct, all will grow and be wonderful.
Reciprocity – when in right relation, it all flows
104:13: He waters the mountains from his highest heavens
“highest heaven” can be here
Keter – can’t know it, God is there. But we can know earth, Malchut.
This is not about humans
Take out human-centrism
Idea of Dominion is not accurate – not “rule”, but responsibility, husbandry
104:19: “He made the moon for festivals, the sun knows its destination (lit: “from where it is coming”
This is the essence of sun and moon
Seeing new moon was first mitzvah given to Israel as left Egypt
104:33: “I will sing to YHVH . . .. “
I want to find a new song. Psalms à songs in liturgy. Torah verse à meditational chant. Praying for the melody.
Do the Meditation Walk on this psalm?
I will sing to YHVH
I will rejoice in YHVH
My Soul, bless YHVH!