How to make the Flowers Blossom – Rabbi Aryeh Brueckheimer (Terumah)

There are many lessons that can be learnt from the symbolism in the physical design of the Menorah. Rav Hirsch explains that the number six is usually symbolic of Olam ha-Zeh, while the number seven is symbolic of Hashem or Olam ha-Ba. The Menorah was constructed in a manner in which the six branches begin from the single middle branch, yet point back towards the middle branch at their top. Rav Hirsch says the middle branch represents knowledge and fear of Hashem. Everything we perceive in this world, and all of our knowledge stems from Hashem. Our goal is to use that knowledge to continually gain more knowledge of Him and further our avodas Hashem.

The flower shapes on the stems of the Menorah also are symbolic of this idea. The flower’s pistil serves as the center of the flower and its source for development. This also represents knowledge of Hashem, much like the single main branch of the Menorah, and the petals which surround it serve to further its growth like the six stems of the menorah. Rav Hirsch equates development of a flower to that of a person.

It is incumbent upon us to instil in our children knowledge and fear of Hashem. This is the start of their development, so that when they grow up like the flowers from the pistil, they will develop with the proper outlook when observing and interacting with the world. Since their roots are strong they will be able to use what they see and learn to increase their knowledge of Hashem and serve Hashem properly.

May we remember these lessons from the Menorah and develop ourselves and help our children blossom in the knowledge of Hashem and in our avodas Hashem.