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She is the sublime Communityof Israel, the ideal of Israel of which the human communityof Israelitesis an earthlymanifestation. The identificationof kenessetyisra 'el with shekhinah,as we have suggested earlier,was key to this entire development,especially to the Kabbalists'ability to claim the rabbinictraditionas secretly intendingthe same meaning as their own. The association between Mary,Motherhood,and Churchhas been taken for grantedsince earliesttimes. But Marywho represents,embodies, or symbolically is the ecclesia is also directlyparallelto shekhinahas representingor identifiedwith kenesset yisra 'el.

Onthedaywhenshe will be spokenfor"-When thatbeourbehavioris "forHer,"is in accordwithHerTorah,commandments .... 135Like the Kabbalisticshekhinah,Mary is an intermediaryin both directions. TheZoharhereis defendingtheKabbalists' nah;it is dueto God'suniqueloveforIsraelthatHe haspromotedthemin this seeminglysurprising way. e. virgin) Onceshe is weddedto Moses,it is he whotakeson of theKingwhoservesas intermediary. R. MenahemNahumof Chernobyl, Me'or'Eynayim (Jerusalem: 1986),p. 251b. See alsoZohar2:200bandR.

The Lady is thus the universalgo-between, from above to below and from below to above. She is the emissary of all, of whom Scripturesays: "The angel of the Lord who goes before the Campof Israelmoved on" (Ex. 14:19). Israel above. "Theangel of the Lord"-the one of whom it says "The Lord walked before them" (Ex. 128 And that [conclusion of the verse] "to walk day and night,"is as it has been interpreted. l29 But this is like a king who was wedded to a grand lady. He saw how much more glorious she was than any other lady in the world.

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