The cycle of life-Brit Mil-Roots-Tradition-Moche Gabbay


BRIT MILA. This is the first precept (Mitzva) which the Almighty commanded Abraham to perform: "And he that is eight days old shall be circumcized, every manchild throughout your generations" (Genesis 17,12). This is the only mitzva which was given to the Jews before the Mosaic Revelation on Mt. Sinai.

The circumcision is performed on the eighth day after the brith of the child, even if it falls on Shabbat, except for cases when ill-health postpones the Brit, and is followed by a feast. The Brit Mila and ritual immersion are the two precepts incumbent on the convert to Judaism.

In the days when the baby was delivered at home by a midwife (kabla), several items were made ready, such as:

THE PALM — CHAMSA — This symbol originated in the Kaballa in the 13th century, and was painted on the front door of a young or expectant couple. This cast away evil spirits (Zanoun). Jewellery was made in the shape of the Chamsa, and upon seeing a beautiful child, or valuable object, they wouls say, "Balchamsa" ("with five"), so that the Evil Eye should keep away.

THE PROPHET ELIJA'S CHAIR — In every synagogue In Morocco you would find an ornamental hand-upholstered chair, the "Chair of Elija". In Jewish sources, the Prophet Elija appears at every circumcision. A legend tells us that when Elija complained about the Children of Israel, when he fled from Jezebel, he said, "For the Children of Israel have abandoned your covenant." (1 Kings, 19) The L-d decreed that Elija must be present at every Brit to witness the error of his complaint. Barren women would purchase this chair and donate it to the synagogue as a charm against barrenness, or to ensure they would have a male child.

TACHDID — During the seven days preceding the Brit, the Tachdid ceremony would take place, to guard the newborn from the evil demon Lilith.

A number of verses from the holy books are read, which according to the kaballa have the power to guard againsty Lilith. At midnight, a man takes an iron sword, points it at all the wall of the house and waves it from side to side near the crib to exorcise the evil spirits. All present then recite, "And they went in to Noah into the Ark, male and female of all flesh, and the L-d shut him in." (Genesis 7,16), and burn ncense as a remedy to drive away evil.

THE 36 HOLY MEN — "LAMED VAV TZADDIKIM — Jewish Tradition maintains: The vord cannot continue to exist were it not by virtue of the existence of 36 hidden holy men.This is based on the words of the Sages : "Happy are all they that wait for him". ( The Hebrew letters for "him" are "lamed vav" ( Succah 45, 2)

The Chassidic movement saw holiness and light spark off the acts of simple people. The 36 hidden tzaddikim were identified with Jews such as woodcutters and water drawers, who lived poor and simple lives, but served the Almighty with true reverence and faith. According to tradition, before one of these 36 holy would depart this life, he transmitted his task to another hidden tzaddik. Today, it is customary to say of a man who is modest and who is satisfied with his lot in life and does great service for others, that he is one of the 36 tzaddikim.

הירשם לבלוג באמצעות המייל

הזן את כתובת המייל שלך כדי להירשם לאתר ולקבל הודעות על פוסטים חדשים במייל.

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