Madonna Visits the Kabballah City of Safed

  • When she visits Safed and the grave of the Arizal she is showing her love.
  • Madonna and thousands of tourists visit each year Safed, Jerusalem and other holy places.
  • Next week will be a great celebration in the Village of Meron on the anniversary date of the passing of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai.

Madonna arrived in Israel early this week to perform at the Eurovision Festival in Tel Aviv. After two back to back concerts, she wrapped her tour with a visit Thursday night to Safed tomb of the holy saint the Arizal. Many years ago she became interested in Kabbalah Jewish mysticism.

The Arizal Rabbi Isaac Luria lived in the city of Safed in the 1500s where he became famous as a teacher of Jewish Mysticism.  Safed is located near the village of Meron where is buried Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai the author of the Zohar. The Zohar was discovered in Spain in the 13th Century and dates back to the period in Jewish history shortly after the destruction of the second temple in Jerusalem about 70 CE. In this period remained Talmudic Scholars from those that had been murdered by the Romans who had burned their holy temple and destroyed the city of Jerusalem.  One of these great scholar was Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai the author of the Zohar.  The Zohar revealed the secret of the Messianic age.  The Arizal received the tradition of Kabballa from his teacher Rabbi Moshe Cordevero who had studied and commented on the Zohar the Book of Splendor.

About two hundred and fifty years ago Rabbi Israel Baal Shem Tov started the Chassidic Jewish messianic movement in Europe.  The teachings of Chassidism are connected to both the Zohar and the works of the Arizal.  One of the foundations of the Kabballah of the Arizal is the concept of the breaking of the vessels which occurred during the creation of the world by God.  The breaking of the vessels created an imperfection in the creation.  Where the Zohar is more universal and more interested in the perfection which will come in the times of the Messiah, the Kabballa of the Arizal is more Jewish national.

Madonna and her interest in the city of Safed shows that many gentiles have a great love for the Jewish nation.  When she visits Safed and the grave of the Arizal she is showing her love. All people have come from the seed of Adam.  When the world broke up into families the connection to Adam was lost.  The Zohar is interested in returning this connection to Adam which is universal.  However great importance is given in the Kabballah of the Arizal to Judaism as a national religion. The fact that mankind separates into families each family unit is important in the eye of God.  The universal aspect of the Kabballah is revealed by each person individually.  The connection to Adam the father of all mankind is an individual connection in the heart and soul of each human being.  Religion connects to groups of people; while faith is universal.

The chief Rabbi of Safed Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu sent to Madonna an interesting letter requesting her to dress modestly when visiting the holy sites in Safed. Madonna and thousands of tourists visit each year Safed, Jerusalem and other holy places.  Many of these holy places are located in Orthodox Jewish communities where the people are living their everyday lives. Many times when tourists enter their neighborhoods with immodest dress it disturbs them.  When Adam and Eve were in the Garden of Eden it says that they were naked.  There was no problem for them concerning modest dress.  They were innocent like children.  Very often people feel like children and forget about the importance of modest dress.

Next week will be a great celebration in the Village of Meron on the anniversary date of the passing of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai the author the Zohar who is buried in Meron. On this day more than five hundred thousand Jews visit this holy place and pray for the welfare of Israel and the coming of the Messiah.  There is dancing and singing songs of praise of the holy saint Bar Yochai who brought to Judaism the light of the Messiah.

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David Wexelman

Rabbi David Wexelman is the  author of five books on the topics of World Unity and Peace, and Progressive Jewish Spirituality. Rabbi Wexelman is a member of the American Friends of Maccabee, a charitable organization helping the poor in the United States and in Israel.  Donations are tax deductible in the USA.
http://www.worldunitypeace.org

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