Love of the Land

For the week ending 18 January 2003 / 15 Shevat 5763

Rabbi Yitzchak Luria (The ARY) The Delayed Brit

by Rabbi Mendel Weinbach zt'l
The Color of HeavenArtscroll

The famous leader of the kabbalists in Tsefat, Rabbi Yitzchak Luria (Adoneinu Rav Yitzchak), came to that city after living for years in Egypt. Tradition has it, however, that he was born in Jerusalem to extremely righteous parents. The Prophet Eliyahu told his father that he should not allow the brit of his son to take place until he appeared to him in the synagogue. When the time of the brit arrived Eliyahu had still not appeared. No one among the assembled guests understood the reason for the delay since the mohel, the father and the baby were all there. The father ignored the mounting cries to start the brit until Eliyahu finally arrived.

The prophet, who traditionally arrives at every brit in invisible form, was this time seen taking the baby in his arms and informing his father that he should take special care of his son, for he would be a light to all Israel and the entire world.

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