Unmask Yourself (Ki Tisa – Purim)


The end of Parshas Tisa tells the story of Moshe Rabbeinu’s Masve – his mask, or veil. After Moshe came down from being on Mount Sinai with God for forty days, his face glowed, although he didn’t know it. Ahron and the elders were afraid of approaching him, so Moshe would veil his face when he spoke to them, and Take off the mask when he spoke to Hashem.

Speaking of veils and masks ties in perfectly with Purim, when we all dress up and put on masks. And so the story of Moshe isn’t just something that happened to him but is applicable to every person, As the Mekubalim teach us, Moshe is symbol for the mind. The knowledge that creates Torah for every person is called Moshe. And it is this Moshe which we are talking about when reading the Torah Introspectively.

Every person’s mind and soul has its Mount Sinai, and it’s being in God’s Presence for forty days and forty nights. Not eating, not sleeping, and not drinking. The intellect does not need food or water, it subsists on contemplation alone. Whether it is in study, meditation, or prayer. Coming back from such a trip, one usually does not know themselves how they have changed, and how they Glow.

Moshe, the mind and consciousness, is in a state of Ad Delo Yada, he has no way of knowing his own glow. It is the nature of enlightenment not to recognize its own greatness. You need support from others to let you know your own light. Just as Ahron and Chur held up Moshe’s hands in the war with Amalek. We need support from friends to recognize our on worth and Shine.

Now, after being told it is set apart from the world, it needs to learn a way of dealing with the word, not burning the entire world in with its glare. We put on many masks in order to deal with the myriad of situations we find ourselves in. One mask is a teacher, as Moshe was. Another is a student, a child, a parent, a boss, a worker, and all the other roles we take on. These are all different costumes and masks we use so we can do our business in the world.

Only when going to speak with God, does Moshe removes his mask. The one place we can appear with no mask, with no predefined role, is in the presence of God. Poskim Disagree on whether it is appropriate to pray in a costume on Purim. In the inner sense, there is no doubt we are to appear before God Unmasked, wearing our most inner essence alone. It is there we can know ourselves unmediated by any language or role. Unmasked.