Let’s celebrate Pesah and the new beginnings. This month, Nissan marks the first month of the year as recognized in Torah. The first month is when the Children of Yisrael left Mitzrayim and became an independent self-governing nation. The fullness of the moon, Sh’khinah’s Presence, celebrates too.

Sefer Yetzirah teaches that through the letter Heh ה, Nissan is formed in time and Aries Lamb is formed in space.  Aries is also the first sign referenced in the Zodiac.

Tracking patterns in the calendar is a comforting practice. It keeps on giving, and refining year after year.  Sefer Bnay Yisaskhar is one of my beloved guides on this journey. He often references Sefer Yetzirah, another deep reference to letters and how they relate to Earth time. I am happy to include a teaching from his writing.

Following the text, you will find 1) an image of the Hebrew version for reference and 2) ongoing practice of counting the Omer of the yearly cycle.  It is especially interesting since the daily omer is counted starts in Pesah. Here is an opportunity to track two cycles, like two gears in a watch, and experience their interaction.

Rabbi Tzvi Elimelech Spira of Dinov

Rabbi Tzvi Elimelech Spira of Dinov composed his great work, “B’nai Yissakhar” between 1820 – 1840. He is one of the most insightful and holistic Rebbes of the Hasidic world. His expertise includes extensive work in astrology and practical kabbalah. His work has had a major impact on modern re-considerations of Hasidism and neo-Hasidic spirituality and most of it remains untranslated. 

Lunch and learn course about Bnay Yisaskhar’s teachings for the six more Wednesdays at noon online at the Aquarian Minyan. Here is a link https://www.aquarianminyan.org/currentclasses




Bnay Yiasakhar are Knowers, who Understand (movement) of time. They Know what Yisrael (the God Wrestling community) is to do, to receive blessings (imprinted) in patterns of time. (Talmud Brakhot 49): And so, moving forward (we learn that all God Wrestlers); Cohen, Levi, and Yisrael are (k’li) designated vessels (ready to be) served their holiness.


As a result, their souls Know well how to transform moments into good ones. And their souls feel camaraderie with the diverse sweet movement of Holy Shefa (Divine Abundance) arriving in the much-loved sequences of time. Even more, these are the lavish gifts The Holy One of Blessing gives to the Neshamot (a higher aspect of soul) of Yisrael.

It is their custom to see the good in others and make things look better after they leave (than upon their arrival.)  Isaiah 29:10:  

The humble will gather (more) joy in Havayah.  The joy of souls in bliss (experiencing) the holy light mixing and fluttering around the heads of Yisrael. Everyone according to their preparation.

“She brings Kedushah to the Tumah of the work-a-day world,”  and “He is an example of Olam Haba, ‘World that is Coming’”. Each and everyone receives in proportion to their preparation.


Like our sages say, ‘Each Tzadik sets their kavanah (intention) beneath their friend’s huppah.’ (Being in the presence of a mitzvah and the positive resonance brings the mitzvah to those witnessing. As a result, soon, the mitzvah spreads.)

Similarly, The Hokhmah(Wisdom) will strengthen the Wise through the holiness of time relative to the time and place the channel opens Shefa flow from the High Holy Place.

And the entire community is holy and within them is Havayah.


In any case, not all souls receive equally (kabbalah). Therefore, our sages teach, ‘it is necessary for a person to regularly see their Rebbe’s (teacher’s) face.  The Heavenly Holiness that flows from The Holy through the holiness of time is not the same for a Rebbe and student. (That is why it’s useful to gather). Through receiving the face of their teacher, face to face, human to human, those gathered unify, like a single being, one candle lighting the other.

Here, the Heavenly Holiness, Light of the Infinite, that activates the Soul through the patterns of time can be felt through the letters of Torah.  The Soul, too, is a spiritual element. (And therefore, resonates with the secret of time.)  For these reasons, it was our ancestors’ custom to gather and learn Torah during designated holy times to “see their Rebbe’s face” – be in the presence of their teacher.

 It was customary for the Rebbe to teach words of Torah (to the students at these gatherings). The letters of Torah draw in the highest holy abundant Shefa, that would manifest and radiate all around the Rebbe. This lavish Presence would quench the (spiritual) thirst of all those surrounding, like flocks of holy sheep and drinking in Torah. 

These letters become pipes, like channels, and The Holy Shefa flows from the words of Torah spoken.  (By these means) The Holy One invites Yisrael people to meet the holiness of time, each one according to their Soul’s preparation. No two times are exactly the same. No one is the same as their buddy.


Every meeting is unique and special depending on where there meeting is (olam), when (shanah), and who is present (nefesh). And the energies of time become available after gathering. The greater the attuning and the more experience with it the more presence can be experienced during weekdays..


This week Aharei Mot is initiated in the weekly Torah reading, while on Shabbat the portion for Pesah is read. It will be read again next Shabbat in the diaspora. This means that the count of Yesod in Netzah – Foundation in Tenacity was initiated this week. It will complete in two more weeks when Aharei Mot is read on Shabbat after Pesah. Netzah tends to stay the course and Netzah is doing what Neztah does best.

Interestingly, the annual practice of counting the Omer starts this Saturday evening within Netzah of Yesod. This is 49 days of counting between Pesah and Shavuot within the annual practice being tried out here. Circles in circles – like an old-fashioned clock or a solar system.

It is significant that Pesah is celebrated with the context of Yesod in NetzahPesah is a holiday that keeps the Jewish people going. Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi zt”l met with the Dali Lama about 25 years ago. He shared that one of the reasons the Jewish people have continued to have an identity without a country. This reason is the annual Pesah Seder. This much-loved ritual of gathering together to tell the tribal story is major reason that Jews continue to maintain a distinct sense of identity while living within diversity.  This is Foundation in Tenacity – Yesod in Netzah.

Good Shabbes

A Sweet Sweet Pesah

Tmimah Audrey ickovits

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