Wednesday, May 18, 2005

A Parable

This story takes place in El Jadida, on the western coast of Africa, in Morrocco.
This is where a little known Kabbalist by the name of Napu Naidu Apasaid took up residence in the 14th Century. A tale is told about his travels during the time between Passover and Shavuot.
     One morning Napu awoke under a tree filled with colorful leaves. He had paused there the night before to rest and so hadn't noticed the colorful leaves.
     "What is this miracle I see before me. Never have I ever seen a tree with such beautiful colored leaves." He walked away from the tree and the leaves became a normal shade of green. He walked back under the tree and the leaves turned marvelous shades of blue, gold, orange and red. At first he thought it must be a trick of the light but then he verified that the sun had yet to fully rise over the hills beyond the forest.
     "I must give thanks for this wonder that I do not know." The instant he said this out loud the wind blew and caused the leaves to blend together all in a shimmering white light. The white light highlighted a corridor where Napu could see people laughing and beckoning to him.
     "Here goes nothing," he said plunging into the vortex formed by the white light. At the other end he met men and women who were all scholars of the Torah. They were laughing and talking loudly to one another. One moment there was silence and then everyone clapped their hands for the wonderful revelation which was given. Looking around Napu looked for all of the famous sages and prophets including the forefathers and Moses. He was led to a stream by a woman of timeless beauty. As he refreshed himself, he asked, "Where are all the famous sages of the Torah?"
     "Oh they are here only they don't have to show themselves any longer. Here we are all equal in Torah. In fact I think I met one of them once, Elijah I think he was called but he didn't stay long enough to get to know him. Everything is different here. We don't have to worry about rules or what something means. Torah is revealed here in every moment. There are no arguments and no reputations to be made. That is for another world. All all souls here participate and study Torah. Perhaps you would like to see our Torah.
     "Of course," he said as he was handed a Torah. It was a book much shorter than the one he was used to.
     "What happened here? Where is the rest of the Torah?" He asked now standing up by the clear stream he had taken a drink from.
     "Oh it's all there. You see we just took the good parts. Everything else we left out."
     "You can do that?" He asked incredulously.
     "Look around you," we can just about do anything here. Napu saw people floating past him, some slowly and some so fast their forms were blurs against the background of the forest. "Remember to become that which you are seeking and do not lose sight of the one." The lights grew fainter and then Napu was back inside of the forest by the many colored tree. Her voice faded. She was no longer there when he turned to look. From that moment on, he knew how to travel weightlessly through the air. There were many things that he learned as well as many stories about his travels. This was one of those stories.


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