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Parsha Mitzvot: Tzav: Mitzvah 140 – Concept 375

“The fire on the Altar shall be kept burning on it, it shall not be extinguished; and the Kohen shall kindle wood upon it every morning; he shall prepare the elevation-offering upon it and shall cause the fats of the peace-offerings to go up in smoke upon it. A permanent fire shall remain aflame on the Altar; it shall not be extinguished (Vayikra 6: 5-6) We are forbidden to extinguish the constant fire on the Altar. (Rambam, Hilchot Timidim u’Mussafim – The Laws of the Constant and Additional Offerings).


The Attribute of Malchut can only rise with constant stirrings from below; our efforts to attach to God. The Constant Fire, representing this stirring from below, demands both constant nurturing (Mitzvah 132) and awareness that we cannot allow it to go out, and certainly may not do anything that will extinguish our inner passion to attach to God. (Radvaz)

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