The Mikvah is one of the most powerful tools in Judaism. It has the ability to transform a ritually impure (tamei) person into a pure one (tahor), as well as to transform a gentile into Jew. How does entering a pool of water accomplish such a magnificent transformation? Where does the Mikvah draw this amazing power from?
This episode begins with the basics of what a mikvah is and how its used, and then continues to develop that to uncover the deeper Kabbalistic meaning behind the Mikvah. We’ll learn the earliest source in the Torah of its power, and how it reconnects us to a realm untainted by sin and impervious to ritual impurity.
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Exodus 29:4, 40:12, Leviticus 15:5-10, 16, 16:24, 26, 28, 17:15, 19:21-22, Numbers 19:7-8, 19, examples of the Torah requiring one to wash their body in water to purify themselves
Maimonides, Laws of Mikvahs, 1:1-2, all purification requires entering a mikvah – https://tinyurl.com/rambammikvah
Babylonian Talmud, Chagiga 11a, calculation of water needed for Mikvah – https://www.sefaria.org/Chagigah.11a.12?lang=bi&with=all&lang2=en
Sifra, Parsha Shemini, Ch. 9:1, Mikvah must be natural without human involvement – https://www.sefaria.org/Sifra%2C_Shemini%2C_Section_9?lang=bi
Babylonian Talmud, Eruvin 4b, requirement to have no separation between the immerser and the water – https://www.sefaria.org/Eruvin.4b.6?lang=bi&with=all&lang2=en
Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan’s anthology vol. 2 including “Waters of Eden: the Mystery of the Mikvah” – https://zbermanbooks.com/aryeh-kaplan-anthology-volume-ii
Genesis 2:17, death enters the world as a consequence of the sin – https://www.sefaria.org/Genesis.2.17?lang=bi&aliyot=0
Likutei Halachos, Yoreh Dei’ah, laws of Mikvah 1:1, there was no impurity in the world before Adam sinned (Hebrew only) – https://tinyurl.com/likuteimikvah
Derech HaShem, Part II, before Adam sinned there was no “Jew” and “non-Jew” – https://tinyurl.com/derechh2
Genesis 2:7-15, creation of Adam, the garden and the rivers flowing out of Eden – https://www.sefaria.org/Genesis.2.7?lang=bi&with=all&lang2=en
Babylonian Talmud, Bechoros 55a, all natural waters in the world are sourced by these rivers – https://www.sefaria.org/Bekhorot.55a.22?lang=bi
Pirkei DiRebbi Eliezer, ch. 20:9, after Adam leaves the garden he sits in the Gichon river to repent – https://www.sefaria.org/Pirkei_DeRabbi_Eliezer.20.9?lang=bi&with=all&lang2=en