"Judah walked up to Joseph and said, "Please, your highness, let me say something to you personally."
As we learned before, the meeting
of the two brothers, Judah and Joseph, reflects some events that were happening in the spiritual worlds, namely, Judah represents Kingship, ruling the world, and Joseph represents Righteousness, or the Foundation of the world. Kingship is also related to the Female, and Foundation – to the male components of the world, which creates imbalance and tension.
This is described in the Psalms, “Behold, the kings assembled (to attack Jerusalem), they passed by together.” Now the Zohar gives it a different meaning: the two kings are Judah and Joseph coming together, and they “passed by” in the sense that they overlooked the mistakes people made (as in “God passes over and overlooks transgressions”), that is why they are “together” – in love and in unity.
Now we can better understand why the first word uttered by Judah was “please”, “bee” (בי) in Hebrew. The gematria of this word is 12 (2 + 10), and Judah was hinting at all the possible permutations of the name of God representing mercy, Adonay (יהוה), like this:
Judah said “Let me, who is your slave, or your servant (עבדך), talk to you.” He was following the construction of the phrase “God, we are Your servants, the creation of Your hands.” He was saying to Joseph, “I am your task (עבודתך) in the world” – from “your servant” to “your work” to “your task” – therefore, take me seriously and treat me kindly.
Art: Petrus van Schendel - A Servant Girl By Candle Light