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Foreword

Maamar Eichah Yoshvah Bodad Hair Rabosi Am

Maamar Kimei Tzeischa Meieretz Mitzrayim Arenu Niflaos

Maamar VeNachah Alov Ruach HaShem

Maamar Vihayah Eikev Tishmaun

Maamar Beela Hamaves Lanetzach

Maamar Hachodesh Hazeh Lachem

Maamar Kimei Tzeischa Meieretz Mitzrayim Arenu Niflaos

Maamar Vihayah Bayom Hahu

Founders Of Chassidism & Leaders Of Chabad-Lubavitch

Glossary

Anticipating The Redemption - Volume 2

Maamar Hachodesh Hazeh Lachem

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  Maamar Beela Hamaves LanetzachMaamar Kimei Tzeischa Meieretz Mitzrayim Arenu Niflaos  

KUNTRES ADAR 25, 5750
(Sefer HaMaamarim Meluket, Vol. IV, p. 193ff.)

By the Grace of G-d
Shabbos Parshas Vayakhel-Pekudei, Parshas HaChodesh,
Adar 25, 5735

"This month shall be the head of the months for you."[1]

The Midrash (cited by Rashi at the beginning of his commentary to Bereishis) states:[2]

Rav Yitzchak said: "It would have been proper for the Torah to have begun with the verse: 'This month shall be...'. Why did it open with 'In the beginning'? Because 'The power of His works He communicated to His nation to give them the heritage of peoples.'"[3]

According to the principle that even a question in the Torah is itself a lesson,[4] a part of "the Torah of truth," it is possible to explain that the statement of the Midrash (which is part of the "the Torah of truth,") teaches a concept that is indeed true: There is [a dimension of] the Torah which begins from "This month shall be."[5] {Certainly, the wording of the original Hebrew used by the Midrash indicates this, because it uses phrases that imply that the necessity of starting from "This month" is fundamental.[6]}

In this vein, the Rebbe Rashab, in his maamar of this title,[7] states that this passage is the primary beginning of the Torah. This concept (- that the Torah begins with "This month" -) reflects [the Torah's] inner dimensions. It is only on an apparent level that the Torah begins with "In the beginning, G-d created...."

An association can be made between the above concepts and the well-known explanation[8] given in regard to the date of the creation of the world.[9] Rabbi Eliezer maintains that the world was created in Tishrei (more specifically, on the 25th of Elul[10]), while Rabbi Yehoshua maintains that the world was created in Nissan (more specifically, on the 25th of Adar).[11]

[According to that explanation,] in actual fact, the creation took place in Tishrei, but the thought to create the world arose in Nissan.[12] Thought represents the inner intent (the purpose and the goal) of the deed it motivates. Thus [when saying that] the actual creation took place in Tishrei, [we mean] the external dimensions of the creation, while the inner intent of the creation took form in Nissan.[13]

Similarly, with regard to the beginning of the Torah: The Torah actually begins with "In the beginning, G-d created" ([telling the story of] the creation which actually took place in Tishrei). [But this refers to] the external dimension [of the creation]. With regard to the inner dimension, the beginning of the Torah is "This month shall be..." (which refers to the month of Nissan).

II

The above can be better understood in view of the contrast that exists between [the spiritual thrusts of] Tishrei and Nissan. In Tishrei, Divine influence is drawn down through "an arousal from below," while in Nissan, Divine influence is drawn down through "an arousal from above" that comes on its own initiative.[14]

This is reflected in the fact that on Shemini Atzeres ([which is in] Tishrei) we recite the prayer for rain, while on Pesach ([which is in] Nissan), we recite the prayer for dew. [It is explained in Chassidus][15] that rain is granted as [a response to] an arousal from below, while dew descends by virtue [of G-d's] initiative.[16]

There is another difference between Nissan and Tishrei. The life-energy drawn down on Rosh HaShanah (Tishrei) for the entire year is limited and contained (for in general, this refers to the Divine life-energy that is enclothed in the inner dimensions of the created beings). This is the source for the natural order.

Nissan serving as "the head of the months" {i.e., that from Nissan, life-energy is drawn down to all the months like life-energy is drawn down from the head to all the limbs of the body} points to the downward flow of [G-d's] infinite light which transcends the worlds; a miraculous order that transcends nature is drawn down.[17]

On this basis, we can understand why the [actual] creation took place in Tishrei, while the exodus from Egypt took place in Nissan. The creation involves bringing into being a limited, defined world that is controlled by natural law. The exodus from Egypt, [by contrast,] represents a step beyond the constraints and the limits of the world because of the revelation of an infinite light which transcends the worlds.

It is possible to explain that these two concepts are interrelated. The influence which is evoked by an arousal from below (the Divine service of the created beings) is limited and defined according to the nature of [those created beings]. When, by contrast, influence stems from [G-d's] own initiative, it is [infinite and unbounded] as He is.

Based on this conceptual foundation, explanation is necessary: Why did the idea to create the world arise in Nissan? What connection is there between the creation of the world (which is limited and defined) and Nissan (which is associated with the revelation of infinite light)?

III

The difference of opinion between Rabbi Eliezer and Rabbi Yehoshua also involves the time of the Future Redemption.[18] Rabbi Eliezer maintains that the Jews were redeemed in Nissan, but in the Future, they will be redeemed in Tishrei. Rabbi Yehoshua, by contrast, maintains that just as [the Jews] were redeemed in Nissan, so, too, they will be redeemed in Nissan in the Future.

The Tzemach Tzedek explains[19] that this difference of opinion follows the line of reasoning of these Sages with regard to the nature of the Redemption.[20] Rabbi Eliezer maintains that "if the Jews turn [to G-d] in teshuvah, they will be redeemed, but if they do not turn [to G-d] in teshuvah, they will not be redeemed." Therefore, he maintains that they will be redeemed in Tishrei, for then teshuvah is accepted more powerfully.[21]

The redemption from Egypt came about as a result of a revelation from above. Therefore it took place in Nissan. The Future Redemption, by contrast, will be precipitated by the Divine service of the Jewish people. And therefore, it will take place in Tishrei.

{This also explains why the redemption from Egypt (and all the subsequent redemptions) were followed by exile - and therefore, described with the analogy of a woman[22] - while the Future Redemption will not be followed by exile - and therefore, is described with the analogy of a man.22 For when a man gives seed first, a female will be conceived, while when a woman gives seed first, she conceives a male.[23]

[To explain the analogy, when the arousal from above comes on its own initiative (the male) - i.e., G-d grants influence independent of the Divine service of the Jewish people - a weaker, more temporary influence (compared to a female) is evoked. But when the arousal from above is preceded by an arousal from below - i.e., the Jews evoke G-d's influence by their Divine service - a stronger and longer lasting influence (compared to a male) is produced.]}

Rabbi Yehoshua, by contrast, maintains that "they will not be redeemed with silver,"[24] i.e., the Redemption will not be precipitated by teshuvah and good deeds. {Even if the Jews do not repent, they will be redeemed.[25]} Therefore, he maintains that the Redemption will come in Nissan, [the month associated with revelation stemming from G-d's initiative].

Although the Future Redemption will come about because of a revelation from above, it will, [nevertheless,] be a lasting redemption, "male" in analogy. [This seems to run contrary to the concepts explained above. Nevertheless,] the revelations of the Era of the Redemption [are exceptions to the above principles, because they] will emanate from a very high level. Therefore even if the man gives seed first, a male will be conceived.

[This is alluded to by a non-literal interpretation of] the verse:[26] "And to Zion, it will be announced: 'This man and this man were born there;' and He, the Most High, will establish it." [This can be interpreted to mean that] when a revelation comes from a very high source, "and He, the Most High, will establish it," then "This man and this man was born." Even when "this man" [initiates], [i.e., the first phase is a revelation from above,] "the man gives seed first," "this man [will be] born," a male will be conceived, [i.e., the revelation will be of a permanent and lasting nature].

Explanation is, however, necessary. With regard to the nature of the Future Redemption, we follow the view of Rabbi Eliezer, as reflected in the Rambam's ruling[27] that "Israel will be redeemed solely because of teshuvah." And yet, with regard to the time when the Redemption will occur, it is mentioned in several maamarim[28] that the Midrash[29] has decided according to Rabbi Yehoshua's position, that the Redemption will take place in Nissan.[30]

It is possible to explain the resolution of this concept based on the statement in Tanya,[31] that all of the revelations of the Era of the Redemption are dependent on our deeds and Divine service during the period of exile. This concept is accepted by both opinions.[32] Rabbi Yehoshua maintains that the fact that we will be able to draw down the revelations of the Era of the Redemption through our deeds and Divine service in the era of exile is (not by virtue of their power, but) because our deeds and Divine service in the era of exile have been endowed with the power of a revelation from above (as will be explained in sec. V).[33]

Accordingly, it is possible to explain that [there is no contradiction] between the two rulings mentioned above that: "Israel will be redeemed solely because of teshuvah" and yet, the Redemption will come in Nissan. For the potential for the Jews to turn to G-d in teshuvah and thus be redeemed immediately[34] comes from a revelation from above, the motif of Nissan.

IV

This concept can be understood by the preface of [the explanation of] an analogy employed by the Midrash:[35]

A king had an only daughter. He did not sway from his love for her[36] until he called her: "My daughter."... He did not sway from his love for her until he called her: "My sister."... He did not sway from his love for her until he called her: "My mother."...

In the maamarim,[37] it is explained that the three levels

(- "my daughter," "my sister," and "my mother" -) are associated with the three pilgrimage festivals. At the time of the exodus from Egypt ([corresponding to the holiday of] Pesach), the Jews' spiritual state could be described as "naked and bare."[38] Their redemption came about as a result of a revelation from above; "the King of kings, the Holy One, blessed be He, Himself, in His glory revealed Himself to them, and redeemed them."[39] Thus they are described with the analogy "my daughter," for a daughter is a recipient, possessing nothing of her own, only what is given from above.

At the giving of the Torah ([corresponding to the holiday of] Shavuos), the analogy "my sister" [is more appropriate to] describe the Jews' spiritual state. For the Torah enables the Jews to become "brothers and friends" with G-d, as it were. {[This relates to] the well-known interpretation of the statement:[40] "Israel, the Torah, and the Holy One, blessed be He, are one," that Israel is one with the Torah, and this enables them to be one with the Holy One, blessed be He.}

Teshuvah (which surpasses the Torah) [enables the Jews to reach an even higher rung,] "my mother," [a name which implies] that they draw influence down to the Holy One, blessed be He, as it were.

[This is implied by the interpretation] of the verse:[41] "Go forth and gaze, O daughters of Zion, on King Shlomo [as he is crowned] with the diadem conveyed upon him by his mother on his wedding day." The Mishnah explains[42] that "his wedding day" refers to Yom Kippur. [King Shlomo is an analogy for "the King to whom Sholom (peace) belongs," i.e., G-d, and "his mother" is an analogy for the Jewish people.] Through the teshuvah [of the Jewish people on] Yom Kippur (for Yom Kippur represents the consummate level of teshuvah[43]), the Jewish people convey a crown to the Holy One, blessed be He, [as it were].

The revelation of the teshuvah and atonement of Yom Kippur comes on Sukkos.[44] Therefore the analogy of "my mother" is appropriate to describe the state of the Jewish people on that holiday.

As explained in the maamarim,[45] the Future Redemption will take place in Nissan. For although Nissan is identified with the level of "my daughter" (a level which is lower than "my sister" and "my mother"), [it has a distinct advantage of its own].

The positive qualities of "my sister" and "my mother" are connected with the identity of the person carrying out the Divine service. (For it is through his Divine service that he becomes like a brother to G-d, or on a higher level, is able to draw down influence to G-d.) Therefore, the Divine service of "my sister" and "my mother" reaches (and becomes "a brother" or "a mother") only to levels of [G-dly] light that relate to [the limited scope of] the spiritual cosmos ([which parallel] man's existence).[46]

The level of "my daughter" (- who does not possess anything of her own and just receives from above -) thus possesses an advantage - the quality of bittul, which establishes a connection to the essence of the Ein Sof, [a level that is not characterized by any limitations whatsoever].46

On this basis, we can understand the statement "In Nissan, they will be redeemed in the future." For the Future Redemption will [be characterized by] the revelation of the essence of the Ein Sof, and this level is revealed through the approach of bittul, which is associated with the level of "my daughter." {In a similar vein, Mashiach is described as[47] "a poor man riding on a donkey." [His state of] poverty [reflects the quality of bittul, which empowers him to achieve his mission].}

V

It is possible to explain that one of the reasons why the revelations of the Era of the Redemption are dependent on our deeds and Divine service in the time of exile is that the Divine service of the time of exile is characterized by the quality of bittul. As explained in other sources,[48] in the era of the Beis HaMikdash, the Divine service of the Jewish people involved the comprehension of G-dliness. Moreover, when [the people] ascended to the Beis HaMikdash for the pilgrimage festivals, they were also privileged to see G-dliness.[49] As a result, the identity of the person who comprehended and saw G-dliness was also enhanced; [each person felt a certain degree of personal importance].

In the era of exile, by contrast, and in particular, in ikvesa diMeshicha, the age when Mashiach's approaching footsteps can be heard, our Divine service is characterized by bittul. The identity of the person performing the service is not felt at all; instead the Divine service is prompted by G-dliness.[50]

It is possible to explain that the power that exists in these generations to withstand the challenges [in our Divine service] that did not exist (to the same degree) in the previous generations - including the challenge not to be embarrassed when confronted by scoffers,[51] which is a very great challenge[52] - [stems from the quality of bittul mentioned above].

When a person overcomes a challenge by dipping into his own resources of power, since these resources are limited,[53] there are times when he will not be able to summon up enough strength to overcome a particular challenge. In the era of ikvesa diMeshicha, by contrast, our Divine service reflects the quality of "his daughter," i.e., it does not stem from our own individual power, but rather from our bittul to G-dliness. Then, since G-dliness is unlimited, [we are granted unlimited resources to overcome these challenges].

It is possible to explain that this concept (- the advantage of the quality of "my daughter" that exists in the era of exile -) is alluded to in the explanation given above that the three analogies - "my daughter," "my sister," and "my mother" refer to the three pilgrimage festivals. The order in which "my daughter" is considered a lesser rung than "my sister" and "my mother" - and the parallel to these levels with regard to the festivals - applies in the era of the Beis HaMikdash. The level of "my daughter" that exists in the era of exile, the bittul that stems from the essence of the soul, is not considered as one of these three qualities,[54] and transcends them.

VI

On this basis, we can resolve the two seemingly contradictory rulings with regard to the Redemption - that the Jews will not be redeemed except through teshuvah, and yet, the Future Redemption will occur in Nissan.

For the teshuvah which the Jews will perform at the conclusion of their exile {for within the exile itself, the fundamental concealment and hiddenness will be felt at its conclusion} will [not come from their own personal qualities]. It will be felt that the reason that they are turning to G-d in teshuvah is not because of the nature of the identity of the person performing teshuvah,[55] but that [as the Rambam states]:[56] "The Torah has promised that at the conclusion of their exile, Israel will perform [the Divine service of] teshuvah."[57]

This relates to the approach of Nissan and the analogy of "my daughter," one who has nothing of her own and receives everything from above. [For the teshuvah is not the independent achievement of the Jewish people, but is rather evoked by the Torah's promise.]

The teshuvah performed by the Jewish people at the conclusion of their exile will come from the Jews' own will and choice,[58] as the Rambam states: "Israel will perform [the Divine service of] teshuvah." [The Hebrew word translated as "perform"] "osim" [also means "do," implying that] the teshuvah will come as a result of the Jews' action and efforts {in contrast to teshuvah that comes as a response to the heavenly voices [that resound in] the spiritual realms[59]}. Nevertheless, this teshuvah will not come from the nature of [the Jews'] own [personal] identities, but because the Torah's [promise] inspires them to turn to G-d in teshuvah.[60]

[As mentioned,] the teshuvah which the Jews will perform "at the conclusion of their exile" will evoke a response - "immediately they will be redeemed." [This unique response] is evoked because the teshuvah will be inspired by the "Torah's promise."8

When teshuvah comes about because of a person's own spiritual state (- that his spiritual state is prone to teshuvah -), [there is a limit to the effects of the teshuvah that is produced]. Although in general, teshuvah reflects a leap [beyond the limits of one's level],[61] [within teshuvah itself, when teshuvah stems from one's personal state,] it is ordered and defined to a certain extent. For since the person himself is limited, even his leap [beyond his personal limits] is confined to certain structures and bounds.[62] First he reaches the lower level of teshuvah, then the higher level,13 until he is redeemed entirely from his circumstance (the exile) in which he existed before turning [to G-d] in teshuvah.

When, however, "At the conclusion of their exile, Israel will perform [the Divine service of] teshuvah," [there will be no need for such a step-by-step progression]. Instead, they "will be redeemed immediately." For their teshuvah [will not stem from their individual spiritual state, but rather from] ("the promise of the Torah"), i.e., it [their teshuvah] reflects the approach of "my daughter." The bittul of "my daughter" affects the essence of the Ein Sof, which transcends the spiritual cosmos (as explained above, sec. V). Teshuvah reflecting the approach of "my daughter" [thus evokes "a leap"] that is beyond all limits and structures (even those limits and structures [associated with teshuvah] which involves a leap).[63]

VII

The fact that the Torah's promise causes the person to turn to G-d in teshuvah on his own initiative reflects a fusion of the approaches of Nissan and Tishrei. For the teshuvah which the Jews will perform "at the conclusion of their exile" will stem from their own initiative. (Unlike the exodus from Egypt,) it will represent an ascent from below. {[With regard to the exodus,] the Jews' desire to depart from the impurity of Egypt and cling to G-d was evoked by a revelation from above. Therefore at the time of the exodus, "the people fled."[64]} But [at the time of the Future Redemption, because the teshuvah will come through the Jews' own initiative,] it will possess the advantage of Tishrei.[65]

Simultaneously, because the teshuvah will be evoked by the promise of the Torah - for which reason the Redemption will come immediately - it will not be confined by any limits, possessing the advantage of Nissan. For as explained above (sec. II), the advantage of Nissan over Tishrei is that [the Divine service of] Nissan involves drawing down an unlimited light.

It is possible to explain that the fact that the Future Redemption will occur in Nissan, although the teshuvah at the conclusion of the exile (which will precipitate the Redemption) will possess the positive qualities of both Nissan and Tishrei, [is because the ultimate intent is to bring about the unlimited revelation associated with Nissan].

[To explain:] The potential to fuse the Divine service of Tishrei and Nissan is granted because the ultimate intent[66] of the creation which took place in Tishrei ("In the beginning, G-d created") and brought into being a limited and defined world is that through the Divine service of the Torah and its mitzvos, [that limited world] will be [permeated by] the revelation of Nissan ("This month shall be... for you").

This explains the concept stated above (sec. I), that G-d's intent to create the world arose in Nissan. The intent refers to the ultimate motivating purpose for the actions that were motivated by the intent. For the ultimate purpose and intent of the creation of the world in Tishrei (i.e., its definition and limitations) is that it be permeated by the revelations of Nissan that transcend limitation.

Nevertheless, since that intent [involves] the revelation of infinity within the context of finite existence, in actual fact, the creation was brought into being in a manner in which - on an apparent level - its ultimate intent is not revealed. For this makes the world limited [in nature]. [For were the ultimate intent, the revelation of unlimited light, to be apparent, the world could not truly be considered as limited.]

Through our deeds and our Divine service, particularly those of the era of the exile, we reveal the inner (intent and purpose) of the limited existence that was created in Tishrei - that it should be permeated by the revelation of infinity.

On this basis, we can appreciate why the teshuvah which the Jews will perform at the conclusion of their exile (the deeds and action of man who was created in Tishrei) will possess an unlimited dimension (Nissan). For through our deeds and Divine service, we reveal that the inner intent of the limitation created in Tishrei is the infinity of Nissan.

This is why the Future Redemption will take place in Nissan - to show that the inner dimension of the limitation of Tishrei is the infinity of Nissan.[67]

VIII

On this basis we can understand [the quote mentioned at the outset]: "Rav Yitzchak said: 'It would have been proper for the Torah to have begun with the verse: "This month shall be...." ' " For in truth ["This month shall be... for you"] represents [the Torah's] beginning (as mentioned in the first portion of the maamar).

The Torah represents the transmission and revelation of the unbounded dimension of Or Ein Sof, G-d's infinite light, that transcends our worldly frame of reference. Nevertheless, it opens with "In the beginning, G-d created," because the intent of the Torah is to convey the unbounded dimension of Or Ein Sof within that limited frame. For this reason, the Torah includes the narrative of the creation, for this makes it possible to draw the unlimited dimension of the Torah into the world and transform it into a dwelling for G-d.[68]

Nevertheless, for the unlimited dimension of the Torah to [affect] the world as it appears as an [independent] entity (outside the sphere of the Torah, as it were), it was necessary for the Torah to "open with 'In the beginning.' " The narrative of the creation (and the narratives which follow in the subsequent parshiyos) [are told] before the passage beginning "This month shall be..." although the latter contains "the first mitzvah which the Jews were commanded."[69] This makes it possible for the study of the Torah and the observance of the mitzvos to cause the unbounded revelation of the Torah to permeate the world as it existed before the observance of the Torah and its mitzvos.[70]

Thus the intent of "opening with 'In the beginning'" is that the revelation of the infinite dimension of the Torah and its mitzvos ("This month shall be... for you") will also permeate the creation as it exists before the revelation of "This month shall be... for you...."

Thus from an inner perspective, "This month shall be... for you..." represents the beginning [of the Torah]. For the inner intent of [the narrative of] creation (which precedes "This month shall be for you...") is [the unbounded revelation associated with] "This month shall be for you...."

IX

It is well known[71] that the creation of the world took place on the twenty-fifth of Elul. Twenty-five is the numerical equivalent of the letters vf which mean "so." On the day Adam, the first man, was created (the first of Tishrei), G-dliness was revealed in the world, manifesting the level of vz.[72] Nevertheless, the revelation brought about by Adam was incomparably [less] than that brought about by the giving of the Torah.[73]

Based on the above, it is possible to say that the concept that "This month shall be for you..." is the inner dimension of "In the beginning, G-d created" represents a higher level than the unlimited dimension of teshuvah brought about by man (described in sec. VII). For the fusion of infinity and limitation reflected in the teshuvah brought about by man evokes an unlimited dimension, revealing the infinite dimension of the Torah and its mitzvos within the world as it is on the level of vz.[74]

The concept that "This month shall be for you..." is the inner dimension of "In the beginning, G-d created," by contrast, reveals the infinite dimension of the Torah and its mitzvos within the world as it was created on the twenty-fifth of Elul, and as it relates to the level of vf.[75]

It is possible to explain that the revelation of this level will come primarily in the [Era of the] Redemption that comes after the teshuvah performed by the Jews "at the conclusion of their exile." For the revelation of an infinite [aspect of Divine light] within the world as it is on the level of vz ([i.e., within] man) through the teshuvah performed by the Jews "at the conclusion of their exile" will lead ("immediately") to the revelation of an infinite [aspect of Divine light] within the world[76] as it is on the level of vf. This will complete the [ultimate] intent [of creation], establishing a dwelling [for G-d] in the lower realms, [in this material world,] below which there is no lower level.[77]

This concept is also implied [by our Sages' statement that] "in Nissan, [the Jews] will be redeemed." {For this refers to the Redemption that will follow our people's teshuvah.} For even the revelation within the world that will characterize the revelation (which will be precipitated by the teshuvah which preceded it), will reflect the approach of Nissan, i.e., infinite G-dly light that transcends the worldly sphere. And yet this revelation will also permeate the inner dimensions of the world itself, as will become manifest in the true and complete Redemption, led by Mashiach; may this take place in the immediate future.

   

Notes:

  1. (Back to text) Shmos 12:2.

  2. (Back to text) Yalkut Shimoni on the above verse, sec. 187; see also Midrash Tanchuma, Parshas Bereishis, sec. 11; Lekach Tov, the beginning of Parshas Bereishis.

  3. (Back to text) Tehillim 111:6. [The prooftext indicates that the narrative of creation and the history of the Patriarchs substantiates the Jews' claim to Eretz Yisrael. Once we appreciate that the entire earth was created by G-d, we can understand that He has the right to apportion it as He sees fit.]

  4. (Back to text) See Likkutei Levi Yitzchak, Igros, p. 267; Likkutei Sichos, Vol. I, p. 116, et al.

  5. (Back to text) See also Sefer HaMaamarim Meluket, Vol. III, p. 177, note 25; Likkutei Sichos, Vol. XVI, Parshas HaChodesh, sec. 5 (p. 485).

  6. (Back to text) See Tosafos, entry Masnisin, Menachos 83b; Yad Melachi, Klallei HaAlef, Klal 41.

  7. (Back to text) From the year 5671 (Sefer HaMaamarim 5671, p. 56).

  8. (Back to text) Likkutei Sichos, loc. cit., p. 483 (see also the notes); sec. 8 of the maamar of this title, 5739 (Sefer HaMaamarim Meluket, Vol. III, p. 86).

  9. (Back to text) Rosh HaShanah 10b.

  10. (Back to text) Tosafos, entry litekufos, Rosh HaShanah 8a; see note 40 in Sefer HaMaamarim Meluket, loc. cit. [Tishrei, i.e., Rosh HaShanah, commemorates the creation of man, which was on the sixth day of creation. Thus the world at large came into being five days earlier, on the 25th of Elul.]

  11. (Back to text) Tosafos, loc. cit.

  12. (Back to text) See Tosafos, entry K'man Matzlinin, Rosh HaShanah 27a; Shaar HaKavannos, Inyan Rosh HaShanah, discourse 1; Pri Eitz Chayim, Shaar Rosh HaShanah (Shaar 24), ch. 4 (or ch. 6 in other printings); see Likkutei Sichos, loc. cit., note 20.

  13. (Back to text) See Nahar Shalom, Seder Tefillos Rosh HaShanah; Shemen Sasson to Shaar HaKavannos, loc. cit. (quoted in Likkutei Sichos, loc. cit.) which states that the creation of the world in Nissan refers to the inner dimension of the worlds, while the creation of the world in Tishrei refers to the external dimension of the worlds.

  14. (Back to text) See the maamar entitled HaChodesh HaZeh in Or HaTorah, Bo, p. 260ff.; see also the maamar of that title from 5654, sec. 7 (Sefer HaMaamarim 5654, p. 138).

  15. (Back to text) See Likkutei Torah, Devarim, pp. 73a, 74a ff.; see also the maamarim associated with Tishrei in that source, p. 76a.

  16. (Back to text) See also Or HaTorah, loc. cit., pp. 260 and 272.

  17. (Back to text) See the maamar entitled HaChodesh HaZeh, 5654, loc. cit. (p. 131), the maamar of that title in the series of maamarim entitled Yom Tov Shel Rosh HaShanah 5666, p. 156, and the maamar of that title, 5739 (Sefer HaMaamarim Meluket, Vol. III, p. 81ff.).

  18. (Back to text) Rosh HaShanah 11a.

  19. (Back to text) Or HaTorah, loc. cit., p. 360ff.; see also Sefer HaMaamarim 5654, loc. cit.

  20. (Back to text) Sanhedrin 97b.

  21. (Back to text) Rambam, Mishneh Torah, Hilchos Teshuvah 2:6.

  22. (Back to text) Tosafos, entry hachi garsinin, Pesachim 116b; Mechilta, Beshallach 15:1; see also Or HaTorah, Tazria, Vol. II, p. 495; Vol. III, p. 809.

  23. (Back to text) Niddah 31a; see Or HaTorah, loc. cit., Vol. II, p. 491ff.; Vol. III, p. 809ff.

  24. (Back to text) Cf. Yeshayahu 52:3.

  25. (Back to text) Rashi, Sanhedrin, loc. cit. See the Chidushei Aggados by the Maharsha to that passage. The simple meaning of the text in Or HaTorah, loc. cit., p. 272, appears to accept Rashi's conception. Sefer HaMaamarim 5654, loc. cit. This interpretation is also explicitly stated in Sefer HaMaamarim 5705, p. 49) which explains that even Rabbi Yehoshua accepts that the Future Redemption will be precipitated by teshuvah. He, however, explains that this teshuvah will be prompted by an arousal from above [and therefore will not be attributed to the Jews' merit].

  26. (Back to text) Tehillim 87:5; see Torah Orah, Bereishis, p. 38a, quoted in Or HaTorah, loc. cit., p. 272.

  27. (Back to text) Mishneh Torah, Hilchos Teshuvah 7:5.

  28. (Back to text) See the maamar entitled HaChodesh HaZeh in Or HaTorah, loc. cit., p. 271; the maamar of that title in Sefer HaMaamarim 5654, sec. VII, p. 138, the maamar of that title in Sefer HaMaamarim 5678, sec. IV, p. 332; the maamar of that title in Sefer HaMaamarim 5700, sec. 8, p. 26.

  29. (Back to text) Shmos Rabbah 15:1.

  30. (Back to text) See sec. VI, which explains that the statement: "Israel will be redeemed solely because of teshuvah," can be interpreted to refer to teshuvah which is prompted by man's own initiative. Therefore, the question mentioned above applies also to the explanation given in note 25, [that the Jews will turn in teshuvah, but their teshuvah will be prompted by an arousal from above].

  31. (Back to text) Ch. 37.

  32. (Back to text) [For it is a fundamental principle that reward is given to man because of his efforts, and not as "bread of shame" (Yerushalmi, Orlah 1:3), an unearned grant.]

  33. (Back to text) [The "revelation from above" referred to in this section and explained in sec. V is different from the "arousal from above" mentioned in note 25.

    Note 25 speaks of teshuvah that comes as a response to G-d's awakening the person, and not as a result of the person's own initiative. Here the intent is teshuvah that can be considered as stemming from man's own initiative, and yet - as will be explained - is still prompted by a revelation from above.]

  34. (Back to text) Rambam, Mishneh Torah, loc. cit.

  35. (Back to text) Shmos Rabbah, the conclusion of Parshas Pekudei; Shir HaShirim Rabbah, the conclusion of sec. 3.

  36. (Back to text) [Although this choice of wording is a departure from the version of the text in Shmos Rabbah and presents a slight linguistic problem,] this is the manner in which the passage is quoted in Torah Or, Bereishis 36a; Or HaTorah, Parshas Bo, loc. cit., p. 258, and other sources in Chassidus.

  37. (Back to text) See the maamar entitled HaChodesh in Or HaTorah (pp. 258, 263, Vol. VIII, p. 2916ff.); see also the maamarim of this title from 5654 and 5679.

  38. (Back to text) Ezekiel 16:7; see also Mechilta (quoted by Rashi) to Shmos 12:6.

  39. (Back to text) Haggadah Shel Pesach; the passage beginning VaYotzieinu, and the passage beginning Matzah Zu.

  40. (Back to text) See Zohar, Vol. III, p. 73a.

  41. (Back to text) Shir HaShirim 3:11.

  42. (Back to text) Taanis 26b; see also Rashi's commentary.

  43. (Back to text) See Rambam, Mishneh Torah, Hilchos Teshuvah 2:7: "Yom Kippur... is the ultimate of forgiveness and pardon for Israel."

  44. (Back to text) See Sefer HaMaamarim Meluket, Vol. III, p. 242.

  45. (Back to text) See the maamar entitled HaChodesh in Or HaTorah (pp. 260, 264); see also the maamarim of this title from 5654 and 5679.

  46. (Back to text) See the maamar entitled ViIshah Achas, 5746, sec. III (Sefer HaMaamarim Meluket, Vol. IV, pp. 45-46).

  47. (Back to text) Zechariah 9:9, as interpreted by Sanhedrin 98a.

  48. (Back to text) See Likkutei Sichos, Vol. IX, p. 73ff., and the notes to the text.

  49. (Back to text) See Sefer HaMaamarim Meluket, Vol. II, p. 46ff., et al.

  50. (Back to text) [I.e., when a person's service of G-d centers on his own understanding of G-dliness, that understanding produces a continually reinforcing process that prompts the person to progress further in his Divine service. The satisfaction he feels is the force which prompts his continued efforts. When, as in the era of exile, the essential element of our service is bittul, self-negation, it is the G-dly purpose of the mission that itself motivates its continuation.]

  51. (Back to text) See Pirkei Avos 5:18; quoted by the Ramah at the beginning of his gloss to Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chayim.

  52. (Back to text) See Sefer HaMaamarim Meluket, Vol. III, p. 123, and the sources mentioned there.

  53. (Back to text) [For every individual, however developed, possesses finite spiritual resources.]

  54. (Back to text) On this basis, we can appreciate why the Midrash cited above speaks of "a king had an only daughter" who "did not sway from his love for her until he called her: "My daughter," "My sister," and "My mother."

    The Hebrew word for "only," yechidah, also refers to [the core of the soul, the level which is essentially one with G-d]. This level [- the king's only daughter -] surpasses the three expressions of love: "My daughter," "My sister," and "My mother."

  55. (Back to text) For even "those who are lost" and "those who were dispersed" (Yeshayahu 27:13) will turn to G-d in teshuvah.

  56. (Back to text) [Mishneh Torah, Hilchos Teshuvah 7:5.]

  57. (Back to text) [The Torah's influence will bring the person to this spiritual awakening.]

  58. (Back to text) See Sefer HaMaamarim 5705, p. 49, which states that according to Rabbi Yishmael's opinion, the fact that teshuvah will be inspired by G-d does not mean "that it will be an arousal from above alone... but rather... that they will be aroused to do teshuvah on their own initiative... but this itself will come as a result of 'an arousal from above.' "

    [To explain: Generally, when teshuvah comes as a result from an arousal from above, it does not evoke a fundamental change within a person's inner being. For the response is dependent on the revelation from above and not on a process of spiritual change occurring within the person himself. For this reason, Chassidus always places an emphasis on the advantage of teshuvah that comes from a person's own initiative.

    The inspiration to teshuvah that comes from the Torah's promise does not negate this positive quality. For its influence operates in a hidden, non-coercive manner. The usual process of arousal from above does not allow a person a choice. Since he has a vibrant spiritual potential, and he is being exposed to spiritual energies that will evoke a response, it is as if he has no alternative but to respond with teshuvah. The promise of the Torah, by contrast, does not have such a direct effect on a person's soul. Therefore, even after the person responds, the teshuvah is considered as coming through his own individual choice.]

  59. (Back to text) [Such teshuvah is not considered the achievement of the Jewish people, because it is only a response to these spiritual energies and does not reflect independent energy or achievement.]

  60. (Back to text) [Generally, when teshuvah comes as a result of a person's choice, that choice stems from the nature of his own spiritual makeup. In this instance, the maamar is saying that the Jews' choice to turn [to G-d] in teshuvah will not come from their own personal nature, but from the Torah's influence. This is a unique positive advantage as will be explained.]

  61. (Back to text) See Likkutei Torah, Devarim 65a; the maamar entitled Shuvah Yisrael, 5736 (Sefer HaMaamarim Meluket, Vol. I, p. 167ff.).

  62. (Back to text) See Sefer HaMaamarim 5705, loc. cit., p. 48.

  63. (Back to text) [Generally, it is explained that influence which comes from above involves both an advantage and a disadvantage. The advantage is that the influence reflects the unbounded nature of G-d, the Giver, and is not confined by the limitations of our mortal realm. The disadvantage is that because the influence is not earned by man, he is not prepared, and it cannot be internalized by him.

    When influence is earned by man, by contrast, the reverse is true. It is limited according to the nature of the Divine service which evokes it, but it does possess the advantage that it can be internalized by man.

    These disadvantages do not apply, however, with regard to the teshuvah evoked by the Torah's promise. Since the promise of teshuvah is given by the Torah, it reflects G-d's infinity. Simultaneously, however, since the promise does not force man's choice, but rather the teshuvah will be "performed" by man, it also possesses the advantage of independent effort.]

  64. (Back to text) Shmos 14:5. As explained in Tanya, ch. 31 (p. 40b), [there was no need for the people to flee, for the Egyptians, crushed as they were by the plagues, would have agreed to any of their demands. Nevertheless, the people realized that the evil within them still existed. Therefore they fled, lest they become influenced by the Egyptians' depravity.]

  65. (Back to text) [And thus be internalized within them.]

  66. (Back to text) With regard to the concepts that follow, see the maamar entitled HaChodesh HaZeh, 5739, sec. VII, (Sefer HaMaamarim Meluket, Vol. III, p. 86ff.).

  67. (Back to text) [To summarize the maamar's intent: G-d desired a dwelling place in the lower world. This implies a fusion of opposites: that there be a limited framework of reference, but that the limited framework be permeated by G-d's infinity.

    In order for that to be possible, the limited framework of existence must come into being first, and it must appear that its limitation is absolute. For were that not to be so - then it would not be truly limited, and one element of G-d's objective - that a lower world exist - would not be fulfilled.

    Nevertheless, the existence of that limited framework of reference is not the ultimate intent. Bringing it into being merely sets the stage, as it were, for the fulfillment of G-d's true intent, the revelation of His infinite light which permeates this lower world and makes it into His dwelling.]

  68. (Back to text) See the explanations of these concepts in the maamar cited in the previous notes, sec. V (Sefer HaMaamarim Meluket, ibid., p. 84).

  69. (Back to text) This is the expression used by Rashi in the beginning of his commentary to the Torah. The Midrashim cited previously (which serve as Rashi's source) do not use this precise wording, but this certainly appears to be their intent. See Likkutei Sichos, Vol. XXVI, p. 59ff.

  70. (Back to text) [To summarize the maamar's intent: The Torah is the medium which conveys G-d's infinite light within the framework of worldly existence. Since the intent is not to nullify the worldly framework but to transform it into a dwelling, the Torah recognizes this framework and adapts to it. For the Torah is compared to water which has the tendency to descend from the heights and take on the form of the receptacle which contains it (Tanya, ch. 5).

    For this reason, the Torah follows the pattern described above with regard to the world at large, beginning with the narrative of creation. This enables it to be internalized within our worldly frame of reference and effect a metamorphosis of that framework from within.]

  71. (Back to text) See Likkutei Torah, Devarim, p. 47b-c; the maamar entitled Zeh HaYom, Erev Rosh HaShanah 5742 (the first maamar in Sefer HaMaamarim Meluket, Vol. III).

  72. (Back to text) [Our Sages comment (Sifri, Rasbi, Bamidbar 30:2): "All the prophets began their prophecies with wv rnt vf 'So spoke G-d.' Moshe surpassed them, saying: wv rcs vz 'This is the word of G-d.' " vf refers to a revelation that is not direct, while vz refers to a revelation that is overt and apparent to the point that one can point one's finger and say: "This is it" (see Mechilta and Rashi, Shmos 15:2).]

  73. (Back to text) See Sefer HaMaamarim 5670, p. 217.

  74. (Back to text) [I.e., this revelation will be within the person's inner, spiritual world; a far higher level than ordinary worldly existence.]

  75. (Back to text) [I.e., it brings infinite G-dliness within the most material dimensions of worldly existence. The potential to accomplish this indicates that a higher source is being tapped.]

    It is possible to explain that the potential to achieve this is generated by the twenty-fifth of Adar - the inner intent of the level of vf as it relates to the world.

  76. (Back to text) For "the entire world is dependent on man" (Likkutei Torah, Bamidbar, p. 5b), et al.

  77. (Back to text) Tanya, ch. 36.


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