Pinchas and Aaron

After Pinchas slays Zimri and the Cosbi for bad behavior the Torah tells us that Gd gives to Pinchas and his children the “Covenant of peace.”

The Ramban contrasts this gift to what Gd gave Aaron back in Exodus Chap. 28, sentence 2. “Thou shalt make holy garments for Aaron and they brother in beauty and splendor.” Ramban then says those who understand Cabalah get the difference regarding the “beauty and splendor.”

The Shikker dovid does not know Cabalah, but would like to offer an explanation. A close reading of the sentence in Pinchas and the quote regarding Aharon indicates that they are talking of two separate ideas. In Pinchas Gd is giving him an existential gift for his actions, “the covenant of peace.” To Aharon he is giving garments- tangible or physical items. These “gifts” Aaron is getting with no explanation. The text does not say why he warrants these gifts of material items

The Shikker Dovid would respectfully like to offer an explanation. The material clotting given to Aaron represent the rituals of our tradition. They are beautiful, splendorous, all you have to do is put them or go undertake to do them and they are beautiful. But like clotting, rituals can get old or lose their meaning without care or constant inspection or reflection. The “covenant of peace” given to Pinchas is for action, for taking a risk, for acting in the best interests of the community. This can be likened to acts of cheesed, kindness, mercy. For these actions, he is awarded an existential gift, ” the covenant of peace.”

The Shikker Dovid would like to suggest that both are equally needed the splendor of ritual, but also and just as important, the existential peace of reaching out to others. Shabbat Shalom.

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One Response to Pinchas and Aaron

  1. Doctor J says:

    A moving insight by the Shikker Dovid. We should be zoche to receive both.

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