Vayera: Chapter 7

"And, lo, three men...and they ate"


A discussion arises as to whether Abraham the Patriarch perceived the three angels, Michael, Gabriel, and Raphael as angelic entities or as physical beings. According to the Zohar, Abraham was able to perceive them as angels by virtue of his circumcision, which removed negativity and elevated his consciousness. The lesson being conveyed concerns the importance of a person's consciousness and its ability to influence perception.

[Verses 106-114]: Abraham and Sarah dedicated their lives to help people make the transformation to a more positive and spiritual way of life. Abraham and Sarah's devotion to this objective aroused genuine miracles of nature.

[Verses 115-137]: The sacrifices that occurred inside the ancient temple and the incense that was burned were powerful tools that were used to remove forces of negativity and evil from the entire world. The absence of the physical Temple in our day prevents us from utilizing these instruments. The Zohar, however, explains that the words of the Torah that speak of the sacrifices and incense rouse those same forces of purification into being. Moreover, they transform prosecuting angels into entities that speak only good and favorable words about a person in the Supernal Courts.


Two people often perceive a singular image or event differently because their individual consciousness are on two different levels. Both perceptions are indeed correct; however, one perspective is limited if it remains on a lower level of consciousness, and the other is far-reaching if it occupies a higher level. Achieving transcendence over this physical realm by raising our own consciousness is the intent of this portion. We achieve a heightened sense of awareness, perceiving the true spiritual reality during the day-to-day rigors of physical existence.

[Verses 106-114]: A miracle, a wonder of nature, is essentially a mirror reflecting a profound spiritual change within human nature. Because our natural inclination is self-indulgence at the expense of others, the Light of this passage gives us the strength to overpower our natural tendencies and apportion part of our life to the service of others, exemplified by Abraham and Sarah. When a person dedicates his life to sharing with others, the Creator causes great wonders to be revealed in order to help him toward this pursuit.

[Verses 115-137]: It was foreseen that a time would come when many physical tools of spirituality would be lost to the ages. The gift of the Torah, the Zohar, and specifically this passage, replenish the spiritual energy lost in the absence of such tools. Accordingly, we can purify negative influences in our own life and the world at large. In addition, we arouse the power to transform decrees of judgment into words of praise on our behalf.