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I Will Write It In Their Hearts - Volume 1
Letters from the Lubavitcher Rebbe

The comparison between a groom and a bride, and Z'eir Anpin and Malchus; the concept that the intent of tzimtzum is revelation

Translated by: Rabbi Eli Touger

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No. 143

This letter is addressed to Rabbi Yitzchak HaKohen Hendel.
B"H, 10 Adar, 5704, Brooklyn
Greetings and blessings,

In response to your invitation to participate in your celebration, the drawing up of your Tennaim[1] on this date:

I would like to express my wish for the fulfillment of the promise:[2] " 'He who finds a wife finds goodness, and he will bring forth favor from G-d' who is good."

It is possible to explain [an allusion in] the beginning of the wording of the Tennaim used by our Rebbeim: "The beginning of the matter is that ... will marry with good fortune according to the faith of Moshe and Israel. They should not transfer [property to others], nor hide [assets] ... and they should dwell together with love and affection in the manner of the entire earth."

On the surface, [it appears that the order should be reversed]. "They should dwell together..." should follow directly after "will marry with good fortune according to the faith of Moshe and Israel." Afterwards, it should continue: "They should not transfer [property to others], nor hide [assets]...."

It is possible to explain the above based on the preface that the Jewish people are G-d's sons,[3] [as it were]. Just as a son is [made] in the image and likeness of his father, so, too, [as it were,] man "resembles the One above."[4]

Certainly, all of man's matters and deeds that are guided by the Torah or by Jewish custom, which is "equivalent to the Torah,"[5] reflect the patterns in the spiritual realms.

In particular, this is true with regard to marriage and all the matters associated with it in particular detail. For a man and a woman resemble Za'er Anpin and Malchus, and the even higher spiritual realms which are their source. On this basis, we can understand why the [seven] wedding blessings begin with the description of the purpose of the entire creation. For the creation comes through the medium of Za'er Anpin and Malchus.

The beginning of the sequence of marriage is the (first) establishment of Tennaim. At the outset comes the fundamental and primary directive: "The beginning of the matter is that ... will marry with good fortune." That concept is explained [by the phrase which follows]: "They should not transfer [property to others], nor hide [assets]...."

To explain: As is well known,[6] the manner in which the creation [began] is that, "at the outset, there was a sublime and simple light which filled all existence.... When it arose in His simple will to create the worlds, He contracted this light. There remained a space and an empty cavity. And afterwards, He extended one vector ..." as stated and explained in Torah Or, in the maamar entitled Pasach Eliyahu, and in Likkutei Torah, in the maamar entitled Lehavin MasheKasuv BiOtzaros Chayim, and other sources.

There is a difference between this contraction (tzimtzum) and the subsequent tzimtzumim. For this [first] tzimtzum is characterized by withdrawal and not [merely] limitation. This makes it possible for the vector (kav) to be drawn down afterwards, i.e., light to be enclothed in vessels. This allows for the worlds to exist. (See the maamar entitled Limaan Yeidu Doroseichem, 5708, and other sources.) With regard to the effect of the tzimtzum on the infinite and finite lights (see the maamar entitled BaYom HaShemini Atzeres, 5699).

Moreover, the ultimate intent is that the light before the tzimtzum would be revealed. The new development this involves is [twofold]:

  1. That this light be revealed within the world;[7]

  2. That there be a higher light that transcends the light [which was revealed] previously. This is the concept of increased light which is drawn down by the Torah and its mitzvos (see the series of maamarim entitled Yom Tov Shel Rosh HaShanah, 5666; the maamar entitled Limaan Yeidu, and other sources).

The fact that this is possible is because the initial tzimtzum was intended for the sake of this revelation.

During the Future Era which will represent the true dimension of the marriage [between G-d and the Jews] both these qualities will be revealed (see Likkutei Torah, the conclusion of the explanation of the maamar entitled Al Kol Kavod Chupah), i.e., [through] the revelation of P'nimiyus HaTorah. This is accomplished through the Divine service of [the observance of] the Torah and mitzvos which precedes it.

After explaining that the purpose of the Tennaim is that [the couple] "will marry with good fortune," we state: "They should not transfer [property to others], nor hide [assets]...." [The property and the assets] refer to the Or Ein Sof [which was revealed] before the tzimtzum. [This light, although] contracted and withdrawn, should not be "transferred," but instead should be revealed. Included in this should also be the revelations that transcend [the light's original state]. (See the maamar entitled Tiku, 5694, [which states that] in the Future era, the essence will be revealed without [the contraction that is necessary when influence is transferred from] a mashpia to a mekabel. Note also the explanation of the maamar entitled Lo Tashbis [in Likkutei Torah].

"Nor hide" refers to the concealment of light in a keli, [like the manner in which] the worlds presently exist; [now] the light is hidden. In the Future era, by contrast, "a woman of valor will be the crown of her husband,"[8] [i.e., the higher quality of the mekabel will be revealed]. [As a result,] the soul will receive nurture from the body. This is sufficient for a person of understanding.

With wishes that speedily, in our days, we all merit the fulfillment of the promise:[9] "Speedily, may it be heard ... the voice of a groom and the voice of a bride...." (See [the explanation of this blessing in] the explanation of the maamar entitled Al Kol Kavod Chupah.

Immediately to teshuvah, immediately to Redemption,"

Rabbi Menachem Schneerson
Chairman of the Executive Committee



  1. (Back to text) [The drawing up of the ante-nuptial agreement between a bride and a groom.]

  2. (Back to text) [The wording of the Tennaim based on Mishlei 18:22.]

  3. (Back to text) [Devarim 14:1.]

  4. (Back to text) [Cf. Yeshayahu 14:14. Note the Shaloh 3a, 20b who interprets this verse in this context.]

  5. (Back to text) [See Yerushalmi, Pesachim 4:1; Tosafos, Menachos 2b, entry Nifsal.]

  6. (Back to text) [Etz Chayim, Shaar 1, Anaf 2.]

  7. (Back to text) [Before the tzimtzum, in contrast, it was impossible for this light to be revealed within the worlds.]

  8. (Back to text) [Cf. Mishlei 12:4.]

  9. (Back to text) [The seventh of the wedding blessings, based on Yirmeyahu 33:11.]

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