Wednesday, May 24, 2023

The Spiritual Journey of Pesach and Shavuot: Embracing the Infinite Light


We are approaching Shavuot. The significance of this holiday is intertwined with the preceding events, starting from 40 days before Purim. 

The Megillah describes the Jewish people reaffirming their acceptance of the Torah, known as Kabbalat HaTorah, during the Purim miracle. 

While their initial acceptance at Mount Sinai was out of force, the acceptance after Purim was driven by love. 

Shavuot, therefore, represents the culmination of our spiritual journey, aiming to draw closer to Hashem, improve ourselves as Jews, and facilitate a connection between the entire world and the Divine.

Reb Noson, in his discourse – Likutey Halakhot, Orach Chaim, Nefilat Apayim #4 – elaborates on the difference between the spiritual light experienced on Pesach, particularly the first night, and the light or influence encountered on Shavuot, especially during the day. 

The key difference lies in the concept of Keter, a Kabbalistic term denoting the crown and an energy level above others.

Rebbe Nachman further explains (Likutey Moharan lesson 24) that Keter acts as an interface between Hashem’s Infinite Light and our finite nature. Although we are limited beings in a finite world, our goal is to experience Hashem’s Infinite Light, an apparent contradiction.

However, through the in-and-out format, an intermittent connection between the finite and infinite, we can touch the Divine while existing in a physical, corporeal reality.

Reb Noson reveals that the experience of perceiving the Infinite Light requires a specific condition: being pushed backward. 

This pushback, termed in the Zohar as “Betisha” or “Me’akev”, creates boundaries or walls that propel a person to wait and develop vessels to truly perceive the Infinite Light.

When a Jew serves Hashem with joy and fulfills mitzvot, enhancing them with Simcha, it propels them forward, activating blessings, including Birkat HaSechal, the blessing of the intellect. 

This blessing nurtures a person’s desire to understand and connect with Hashem, realizing that the more they strive for comprehension, the more they recognize their lack of comprehension, leading to a deepened level of faith.

Rebbe Nachman explains that the Keter acts as an interface between Hashem’s Infinite Light and our finite nature. 

Although we are limited beings in a finite world, our goal is to experience Hashem’s Infinite Light

The setbacks encountered by every Jew are not indications of unworthiness or abandonment by Hashem, Heaven forbid, but rather the necessary preparations to perceive the next spiritual level.

These setbacks, experienced during the 49-day Sefirah period, play a significant role. 

Mourning for Rabbi Akiva’s students and the challenges of the Sefirat HaOmer period itself create a sense of restraint and setback, fostering the development of vessels for perceiving the Infinite Light.

These vessels enable the internalization of wisdom and intuition beyond the revealed aspects of Torah, allowing for a deeper understanding of Hashem and His presence in the world.

Pesach represents a high spiritual light, bestowed freely upon individuals regardless of their current level. 

It serves as a gift from Hashem to help people break free from their personal Egypt, the spiritual bondage and limitations they face.

However, this light does not encompass the Keter, the bounce-back or setback necessary for internalizing the Infinite Light. 

After the first day of Pesach, this light recedes, and the countdown of the 49-day Omer begins, leading to Shavuot, the 50th day.

Shavuot surpasses Pesach in terms of light, although it may not provide the same elevated experience or spiritual high. 

On Shavuot, one internalizes the Keter, absorbing the Infinite Light in a way that is sustained, deepening a person’s understanding of Hashem and enhancing their connection to Him. 

This internalization enables individuals to integrate the Divine Wisdom into their being, aligning their thoughts, emotions, and actions with the Divine Will.

In conclusion, the journey from Pesach to Shavuot represents a spiritual progression, where setbacks and challenges during the Sefirat HaOmer period prepare individuals to absorb the higher light of the Keter on Shavuot. 

While Pesach grants a temporary gift of light to help break free from limitations, Shavuot offers the opportunity to internalize and sustain the Infinite Light, allowing for a deeper connection with Hashem and a greater understanding of His presence in the world.

With blessings for an amazing, uplifting and rewardingly happy Shavuot light and experience, 

Meir Elkabas 

WhatsApp: +1-732-800-1863  


(This article also appears on the BRI website:

To see a video presentation of these concepts:

For more on Likutey Moharan lesson 24 CLICK HERE!


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