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Tefillin and Numbers

Tefillin and Numbers

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Numeric concepts surrounding Tefillin
Numeric concepts surrounding Tefillin

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Published by: Rabbi Benyomin Hoffman on Aug 12, 2008
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06/01/2010

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PARSHA MATH
TEFILLIN AND NUMBERSThe Letters
The
ש
 
shin appears on the Tefillin intwo forms: on the left side of the one worn on thehead, the letter is embossed with four splays, while on the right side of the one used for thearm, the standard three-headed version of the
ש
 
shin is used. The two forms infer the two kinds of Divine wisdom, the revealed and the concealed. The four-headed shin appears nowhere else
The Knots
There is a knot on the head Tefillin straps. The knot that goes at the base of the skull is shaped like a
ד
 
dalet.The arm Tefillin straps have a knot formed like a
י
 
yod..Together the
ש
 
shin,
ד
 
dalet, and
י
 
yod form thename 
יד-ש
 
(Almighty).
The Number Four 
The Book of Devarim (Deuteronomy) is like the Tefillinworn on the hand [whose box has only one compartment], while the four other books (of the FiveBooks of Moshe) are like the Tefillin worn on the forehead whose parchments are rolled individuallyand set in four different chambers. This analogy also reminds us of the fingers on our hand. Four fingers are similar and one is different and fatter (the thumb).
The Purim Connection
 Esther 8:16 
The Jews had light, gladness, joy, and honor.
Chazal, when analyzing this pasuk (verse), derive that the word
honor 
refers to Tefillin. Chazal haveinstructed us to fulfill four mitzvos on Purim. They are:
PURIMTEFILLIN
Reading the MegillahDevarim 6:4-9Yoke of HeavenSending food presents to our friendsDevarim 11:13-21Material blessingsDistributing gifts to the poor Shemot 13:1:10Matzah – bread of the poor Eating a Purim mealShemot 13:11-16Redemption of the first born with shekalim
The Configuration of the Head Tefilin
The Baal Tikkun Tefillin, Rabbi Avraham of Zuns'heim, aRishon, says that the configuration of the Tefillin shel rosh (head) corresponds to the encampment of the Jews in the desert. There are a total of twelve stitches closing the Tefillin, three on each side of thecentral cube. This corresponds to the twelve tribes encamped in the desert, three on each side of thecentral area. In the center, we have the cube that houses the script, the parashiyot, of the Tefillin. Thecube corresponds to the ark and the script to the luchot (saphire tablets) which were inside. The ark hadon its lid the two Keruvim (Cherubim) whose wings were spread aloft. The Keruvim with their wingsspread aloft, loosely had a configuration similar to the letter shin -
ש
. The cube of the Tefillin whichhouses the script of four paragraphs of the Torah which mention the mitzva of Tefillin, has two lettersshin on the outside, similar to the ark and the two Keruvim. Rabbi Avraham adds that these last twosimilarities are alluded to in the verse in Tehilim (119,162),
Soss anochi
.
Soss
is spelled Sin Sin -
שש
.These are the two Keruvim and also the two Shins on the Tefillin housing. The letters Sin and Sin,symbolize the two Keruvim.www.parshapages.comwww.parshaforkids.blogspot.com

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