Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Chochma vs. Bina - Practical Manifestations - Part 1


(Video is from Parshas Zachor with Rav Itchie Meyer Morgenstern in Mezibutz, Ukraine)

Click here for the Introductory Post.

Bnei Sefarad and the Bnei Ashkenaz (Rav Yosef Karo and Rav Moshe Isserles):

We find from Rav Moshe Dovid Walli zy"a (a student of the Ramchal) in the Likutim, that Sefardim are from the aspect of Chochma. And therefore, they love Bekiyus (bredth of study) and obtaining vast knowledge in all of Torah, like the Rambam. Whereas Ashkenazim love depth and Pilpul, like the Ba'alei Hatosafos, because they (Ashkenazim) are from the aspect of Bina.

[As I brought down in the introduction, Chochma is the aspect of general principals and Bina is the aspect of focusing on the details. Therefore, Ashkenazim, for the most part, love to focus on the details (only learning 20 blatt of 6 masechtos really really well) because they are the aspect of Bina. Whereas Sefardim focus on yedias Hatorah b'chalus because they are primarily the aspect of Chochma, which focuses on the principals, the forrest, and not the trees.]

Ostensibly, this requires explanation because reality shows that Ashkenazim are physically whiter, which relates to Chochma. [in Kabbalah, white is the simplist color without any complexity, like the general principals which characterize Chochma - this question also stems from an assumption that everything in the physical world is a mere reflection of a deeper spiritual reality, even something as mundane as the color of one's skin] While Sefardim are generally browner, which relates to the aspect of Bina. [With all of the focus on detail, there is more complexity in applying principals to the details of life - This is symbolized by brown, which has many shades mixed together, as a reflection of Bina's complex application of general principals to daily life.] But the explanation is that the Ashkenazim have the aspect of Chochma externally, but internally they are the aspect of Bina, while the Sefardim are the aspect of Bina only externally, while internally they are the aspect of Chochma... [A Penimius HaTorah section is omitted]

Therefore, Ashkenazim, during the chupa [which is used to represent our values as it is the beginning of each new home that is created] hint to the idea of "Ashes Chayim Ateres Ba'ala, The woman of valour is the crown of her husband." They reveal the loftiness of the female side, which surrounds the groom. [When the Kallah circles the Chosan 7 times, this reflects the fact that at the root of the Neshoma of Ashkenazim, the female side, the side of Bina, is emphasized and elevated.] However, [at the chupa] Sefardim reveal the elevated status of the male side, which surrounds the bride. [At a Sefardi wedding, the couple is covered by the Choson's talis, showing that the male side (Chochma) is makif (surrounds, is predominant over) the female side, because the Sefardim in their inner essence are Chochma. Therefore, they reveal the elevation of the male side. But the Ashkenazim who, in their inner essence, are the aspect of Bina, reveal the elevation of the female side. [These root natures are reflected in the Chupa because] the chupa reveals the inner essence.

Continue to Part 2, Kabbalah and Chassidus.

-Dixie Yid

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

"[At a Sefardi wedding, the couple is covered by the Choson's talis, showing that the male side (Chochma) is makif (surrounds, is predominant over) the female side, because the Sefardim in their inner essence are Chochma."

The same at Yekke chassunahs, so it's not strictly a Sephardic thing.

DixieYid said...

True, and my rebbe mentioned that point as well. I can't recall how he addressed it. If and when I can find out, I'll follow up with another comment.

Another he'orah is that at many Sefardi weddings in the U.S., they have the Kallah circle the Chossan 7 times. However, he pointed out that this is merely due to Ashkenazi Immitation Syndrome, but that it is not an authentic Sephardi minhag.

-Dixie Yid