The mitzvah of Shemittah and Yovel teaches Man not to be too earthly. Hashem says כי לי הארץ the earth belongs to Me. All physical, material objects, and matter are in existence for one reason only, to elevate them for a higher purpose. When Balak approaches Billam to curse Am Yisrael he describes to him the essence and DNA of this Jewish nation with these words. עם יצא ממצרים הנה כסא את עין הארץ. The simple understanding of this description is ” A nation just left Mitzrayim. It has covered the “eye” of the land (by killing Sichon and Og who used to protect us) and now they are sitting by me (in attack mode)”. The Sfas Emes in his profound approach interprets this statement as follows. “Covering the eye of the land” means their eyes don’t see the earthly nature of the mundane but rather see planet earth as the heavenly opportunities to make everything sacred. In other words כי לי כל הארץ (Shmos 19,5) to make the sole owner of the earth Hashem. When the humanity of the world will come to recognize this absolute truth to its fullest, it will be the time that we are graced with במשיח בן דוד which is the same gematriah כי לי כל הארץ including its ten letters.
The gemarah in several places (Berachos 58, Shabbos 34, Baba Basra 75) relates stories of individuals who were mocking the words of the Chachamim, and the Tanna who was present responded with נתן בו עיניו ונעשה גל של עצמות which literally means he gave that person his eyes and he became a heap of bones. Rav Nachaman from Breslov interprets the episode in a way one can learn from it avodas Hashem. He asks why does it say he gave him his eyes? Instead it should have said more appropriately הביט בו הסתכל בו that he gazed at the mocker and thereby zapped him and he died?
He answers that the passuk says עין ה’ אל יראיו the eye of Hashem is towards those who fear Him which simply understood means that they are under Hashem’s providence. However, Rav Nachman interprets this to mean that Hashem’s all – encompassing eyes sees the entire cosmos at once kiveyachol in less than a second. Not only does He view everything at once but He also sees
through everything reads hearts and minds of mankind all at the same less that a second. Hashem gifts His eyes to those who fear him in order that they too can have such an amazing lens to see Hashem’s most spectacular miraculous world. It is through this heavenly view of the physical world, that they perceive the Hand of Hashem in every atom, blade of grass, drop of rain, as all nature in unison sing out Hashem Echad.
This is what Chazal meant when they said that the Tanna gave the mocker his eyes. It is as if he lent him Hashem’s perception in creation and the realization that is coupled with it which the results were נעשה גל של עצמות. The word גל is from the root of גילוי to reveal, and the word עצמות means עצימת עינים closed eyes. In other words the mocker saw things that were suddenly visible to him which he never saw. For the first time he realized that the world of nature is acting as an imposter acting as if it is independently in control of everything and there is no other boss or force in charge. For the first time in his life he realized that his every thought, speech, and action make ripples in all the worlds to reveal the light of the Holy One or to conceal Him. The mocker was so shaken upon this revelation that he instantly did teshuvah and changed his ways.
We just celebrated the Hilulah of Rabbe Shimon Bar Yochai. In a way we can say, that the same interpretation applied by him that he gave Am Yisrael Hashem’s eyes through the writing of the Zohar Hakadosh. Through his teachings, one knows not to be duped and deceived by the luring, fleeting, tangible pleasures, and by physical objects no matter how much they glitter and massage one’s ego. They are all merely lifeless puppets which have no independent life of themselves. Yet they seem to move, grow, make sounds and even dance but only by the strings which Hashem orchestrates them. They are here only to test us by concealing Hashem’s presence in creation. It is Hashem’s world solely dependent upon Him for every particle’s continued existence. Don’t get lost in the jungle or sink in the quicksand of earthliness without a spiritual compass.
We say Shma Yisrael at least twice every day. It is called Kabbalas Ohl Malchus Shamayim the acceptance upon myself the Yoke of Heaven. Why do we have to close our eyes when we do this? We suggest that the reason is we should realize that before we accept ה’ אחד our eyes of flesh naturally see exteriors and the landscape of nature not its interior and spiritual contents. However, when one truly accepts Hashem Echad ואין עוד מלבדו then he is given a new lens to look at himself, others, and the world. The entire universe with all its different micro complexities, dynamics, materials, biological and scientific elements, atomic energy, known and unknown, are suddenly transformed into one common denominator unit of existence, all reflecting Hashem Echad. After this declaration of Hashem Echad, it becomes time to welcome and open up your new eyes that also reflect Hashem Echad as you reframe and upgrade your vision of the world. 0ne is now in the state of experiencing גל של עצמות. Is it not really incredible that the gematriah of שמע ישראל יהוה with the kollel equals גל של עצמות with its nine letters!
ותחזנה עינינו בשובך לציון ברחמים Our eyes will finally see the whole truth when Hashem will return to Tzion and the Beis Hasmikdash will be rebuilt.