In this week’s parsha Avraham decides to send his trusted disciple and student to find Yitzchak’s predestined wife. The Pasuk first tells us about Avraham’s status at the time.
וְאַבְרָהָם זָקֵן בָּא בַּיָּמִים וַיהֹוָה בֵּרַךְ אֶת אַבְרָהָם בַּכֹּל:
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And Abraham was old, advanced in days, and the Lord had blessed Abraham with everything.
ברך את אברהם בכל: בכל עולה בגימטריא בן, ומאחר שהיה לו בן היה צריך להשיאו אשה:
had blessed Abraham with everything: [The word] בַּכֹּל is numerically equal to בֵּן [son]. Since he had a son, he had to find him a wife.
There is another explanation in the Medrash (Tanchuma 6) and in the Gemara (Bava Batra 16b) that this Pasuk is referringto Avraham having a daughter who’s name was “Bakol”, and the Pasuk is saying that Hashem blessed Avraham with a daughter named ‘Bakol’.
These two explanations seem to be somewhat contradictory.
The Degel Machaneh Efraim, Rebbe Mosh Chaim Efraim of Sadilkov, (grandson of the Baal Shem Tov) explains this Pasuk based on a beautiful insight that the Toldot Yakov Yossef (Rabbi Yakov Yossef of Polnoy, great disciple of Baal Shem Tov) teaches in the name of Rabbi Nachman of Horedanker(holy disciple of the Baal Shem Tov and grandfather of Rebbe Nachman of Breslev).
The Toldot Yakov Yossef quotes Rebbe Nachman of Horedanker who explains the Gemara (Bava Batra 141a) that “It is a good sign and a good ‘Mazal’ for the subsequent birth of baby boys to first have a baby girl”
בת תחילה סימן יפה לבנים
He explains that on a deeper level this Gemara is teaching us about the right attitude to have in serving Hashem. When someone is wanting he adopts an energy of receiving. In order to receive you must have this energy of wanting that which you receive.
On the other hand, the energy of giving is an energy of having so much more than I need or want that I am now giving. Giving comes from a feeling and energy of having while receiving and taking is from and energy of lack and wanting.
According to Kabbalah, the feminine energy is that of receiving and wanting while the male energy is that of giving and having.
In serving Hashem, explains Rebbe Nachman of Horedanker, we must always adopt an attitude of the feminine-constant wanting and recognizing our lack of closeness to Hashem because of how infinitely great He is. In serving Hashem we must realize that whenever we reach a new level of understanding and connecting we are still infinitely far and lacking, and therefore we will always experience desire, interest, and willing the next level of connection, the next level of relationship, the next level of understanding Hashem’s wisdom in the Torah.
Feeling full and satisfied with our present level will only hold us back from reaching the next level. Opening ourselves completely, with absolute desire from a feeling of emptiness, to the next level is what will keep us constantly at the gates of heaven so that as soon as we merit and the gates open up for us we will receive that next influx of divine inspiration, connection, pleasure, and understanding.
This is the deeper meaning of the Gemara about first having a daughter, a baby girl. If whenever we merit one level of revelation we still feel ourselves still so far and empty of the next level because Hashem is truly infinite, we will never be limited to the levels we could achieve and reach. We will always reach more and more. If we always precede our sons, our experience of having and achieving a certain level of connection to Hashem, with a daughter, with that wanting energy, that energy of being in the place to receive because we feel empty and have created that space for the next level, there will be no limits to what we merit.
According to this explanation, the Degel Machanaeh Efraim explains the two explanations on this Pasuk about Avraham.
He explains that the opinion that this Pasuk is teaching us about Avraham having been blessed with a son, as Rashi quotes, and the opinion that he was blessed with a daughter are really one and the same. One comes to teach us that Avraham achieved a tremendously great spiritual level at this point in his life, a level where all of his days were perfected as one, in complete alignment with his higher self, in complete alignment with Hashem.
The other opinion comes to teach us that even though Avraham achieved this lofty level he was still blessed with a daughter, meaning that he still grounded and humbled himself with the realization that he is still empty next to Hashem’s infinite greatness and next to the next level of experiencing the divine, connecting to Hashem and understanding His infinite wisdom.
This in essence the secret of how Avraham merited, as it says in this pasuk, that all his days were a greater blessing than the previous, all his days were building on each other to greater and deeper connection and relationship with Hashem. It is because he always put himself in that feminine energy, no matter how much he achieved, that energy of receiving and wanting the next level because of genuine humility and humbly realizing his emptiness next to Hashem.
May we merit properly preparing ourselves with this ‘daughter’ energy, no matter what we achieve and have achieved, so that our prayers for the next level come from the deepest part in our hearts, and so that we always have that room in our vessels for a higher and deeper level of connection until we merit the final redemption and the coming of Mashiach speedily in our days Amen!