Experience the freedom that comes along with Nissan – the month heralding spring and the holiday of Pesach. Read about how you can bring it into your life.
The month of Nissan corresponds to April 6 through May 5 in 2008.
King in the Spring
In the Torah, Nissan is considered the first of the months of the year. It is also called “Chodesh Ha’aviv” – the month of spring.
One of the most prominent aspects of this month is the energy of kingship and leadership. According to the book of Yetzirah, the letter that is associated with the month of Nissan is the letter “Hei” with which G-d created this world. The letter Hei represents the Sfirah of Malchut – the Sphere of Royalty and Kingship. The first day of this month is considered the New Year of the kings. When a king of Israel was crowned, for example, on the 25th of the month of Adar, five days later on the first day of Nissan began the second year of his reign. The way a king reigns over his kingdom is through the power of speech: “Bidvar Melech Shilton” – by the word of the king he rules.
We can see that there is a direct correlation between kingship and speech. The book of Yetzirah states that the faculty of speech is connected with Nissan.
On Pesach We Are Free
All of us have within us the core quality of royalty, and the most auspicious time to experience and express this quality is during the month of Nissan, especially on Pesach (Passover), the holiday of this month. On the night of the seder we are instructed to perform the mitzvot of the night while leaning – as was the way of the kings: to dine while leaning on their chaise lounges.
Nissan is referred to as the month of Redemption. According to the Talmud, “In Nissan our forefathers were redeemed from Egypt and in Nissan we will be redeemed” (Tractate Rosh Hashana 11a) with the coming of Moshiach. We celebrate the power of liberation and freedom. Freedom is expressed through the image of the “open mouth”. The ability to express oneself and to have the freedom of speech is an integral part of liberation and redemption. When the People of Israel are in a condition of Exile – an existential state of confinement and constriction – they are compared in the prophets to a female sheep that is mute before its shearers. The opposite is the case in the month of Nissan; the central mitzvah of this month, done on the seder night, is the telling of the story of the Exodus. “The more one tells of the Exodus from Egypt, the more is he praiseworthy.” This is the foremost mitzvah of speech of the entire year. In fact, one meaning of the word Pesach is “Peh-Sach” – a talking mouth. On Pesach night we read the haggadah, the book of talking and telling.1
All of the above helps us to understand more about the Sphere of Malchut that is Kabbalistically represented by the mouth2.
Leaping Towards Freedom
The part of the body connected with the month of Nissan according to Kabbalah is the right foot – the foot of trust and confidence. This is the foot with which we jump and leap – the main meaning of the word Pesach, which is to skip and pass over. Thus, one of the main themes of Pesach is the ability to break through conditions of confinement, restrictions and limitations. This is done with the “Koach Hadilug” – the soul power to break through and leap over boundaries. The exile of the People of Israel in Mitzrayim (Egypt) is spiritually the source of all future exiles, and it is the exodus from Mitzrayim that gave us the initial strength to handle all exiles, all through the last one at the end of which we will transcend all possible boundaries and limitations.
The word Nissan contains the letter “Nun” twice. The letter Nun represents Nissim (miracles) – supernatural energies and direct Divine assistance.
We prepare for Pesach by cleaning and eliminating all Chometz (leavened bread) from our domains. We subdue and refine our ego and clear ourselves of the courseness of self-centeredness. We work on becoming the proper recepticles for absorbing and integrating the Matzah. The Matzah of the first seder night is the “Bread of Faith” – strengthening our ability to trust and connect with the Divine, which transcends intellect and logic. The Matzah of the second seder night is the “Bread of Healing” – providing us with the power to heal all exile maladies.
The celebration of the week of Pesach culminates with the special meal that we eat on the last day of Pesach in the afternoon. This meal which was initiated by the holy Baal Shem Tov is called the “Meal of Moshiach”, representing the final Redemption and the ultimate transformation of the entire world, bringing it to its most G-dly state and making it a dwelling place and a home for G-d Himself. At that time, we will be like Royalty, no longer slaves to our limitations.
Define your personal Mitzrayim, your personal limitation that prevents you from being able to express your higher self. Tap into the energy of Malchut available during this month to release yourself of the constriction and be like Royalty, truly free.
1 In Hebrew the root of the verb of speech (d,b,r) means also “to lead” and “to rule”.
2 The Gematria (numerical value of the Hebrew letter of the word) Nissan equals twice the Gematria of the word Peh (mouth); one open mouth represents the Redemption and Exodus from Egypt, and the second represents the final and eternal Redemption.