We are now past the wonderful inspiring days of the month of Tishrei and back to “real” life. But in all honesty, what is more real to a jewish soul? The uplifting spiritually fulfilling yomtovim of Tishrei? Or the mundane life of work and day to day chores?
Many people feel a bit down after the holidays…what i call the.post Tishrei slump. And as we are entering the month of marcheshvan, we reflect on the word “mar” which means bitter. That in itself is a bit depressing, to go from the simcha and inspiration of Tishrei to the bitterness of Cheshvan. So how do we relate to this situation?
From marcheshvan we learn an important lesson…all bitterness in this material world is meant to be sweetened and changed to sweetness. That means using this material world and al its problems in order to serve Hashem. Changing darkness to light.
Going out into the material world and being involved with all our mundane activities often seem pointless, lacking in meaning and a deeper.purpose. But that is precisely the point: to change the mundane into spiritual. To use every material thing and all our experiences to elevate the mundane world and reveal the hidden G-liness in the world because there is nothing except G-d. He is the only true reality.
So in Cheshvan we become like avraham and sara, venturing out in the world to find lost souls , lost sparks, and bring knowledge of G-d to the world.
And we use the inspiration from Tishrei to do that. We bring the joy of succot into our everyday lives. We bring the blessings from Tishrei into our daily life. As the Rebbe always said, after Tishrei when we go back to our homes and daily lives, we start to unpack our bags, to unpack all the blessings we received through our avoda in Tishrei.
And so the post tishrei slump becomes a stepping stone to reach a higher level, to climb life’s mountains with courage and joy.
The momentary down becomes a catalyst for greater spiritual growth. And so the real world becomes a connection of spiritual and material, holy and mundane, as we make this world a dwelling place for Hashem.
It is interesting to note that Cheshvan is the only month which has no holidays or special mitzvot.We are taught that it is “reserved” for the time of Mashiach, who will inaugurate the third Temple in Cheshvan.
The letter Nun is the letter associated with the month of Cheshvan according to sefer Yetzirah.
The letter nun is considered to be the letter of Moshiach, as is said (with reference to Moshiach): “Before the sun, his name is Ye-non [from nun]” (Psalms 72:17). As a verb-root, nun means “to reign.” As a noun, it means “the heir to the throne” (from nin).
Cheshvan, the eighth month, is the month of Moshiach, because eight signifies the eternal revelation of the supernatural (the consummate state of rectified nature being the secret of the number seven). Whereas in our present reality, the “harp” played by King David and used in the Temple has seven strings, the harp of Moshiach possesses eight strings. Just as 8 transcends 7, so does 50 (the numerical value of nun) transcend 49 = 72.
So now we can look at Cheshvan in a positive sense and use it to work to bring Moshiach , may it be speedily and soon.