Wednesday, November 02, 2005

LESSONS IN TANYA: Thursday, November 3, 2005


Cheshvan 1, 5766 * November 3, 2005


Today's Lesson:

Iggeret HaKodesh
(Middle of Epistle Twenty-Five)

Now, (39) "[G-d created] this opposite that" there are (40) "ten crowns of impurity."

[Since the entire dynamic of the holy "side" of the universe has its counterpart in the "other side," the sitra achra, the above- mentioned Ten Sefirot of holiness (and likewise the ten corresponding faculties of the G-dly soul) each have their unholy counterpart].

From these issue the souls of the nations, which are also comprised of the very same ten levels.

The exposition of Sefer HaGilgulim (41) on the verse, (42) "That man rules over man, to his detriment," is common knowledge: it refers to the mystery of the exile of the Shechinah in the midst of the kelipot, in order to animate them and to empower them to rule in the present time of exile.

"[Man rules over man" thus means that the "evil man" (of kelipah) rules over the "sacred man" i.e., the holy "side" of the universe].

However, this [temporary dominion of evil] is "to his [ultimate] detriment...," [for its underlying intent is that the sparks of holiness that are found within evil, be extracted and elevated].

This is why the nations presently dominate the Jewish people (43) for the souls of the nations [derive] from the kelipot, in which the Shechinah is vested in a state of exile, [empowering them to rule].

Though extensive exposition is required, as to how and what [is the manner in which the Shechinah is invested in the exile of the kelipot], nevertheless, it is truly so.

Despite this, the kelipot and the nations receive their nurture and life-force only from a reflection extended to them from the hindmost dimension of holiness, "in the manner of one who [unwillingly] throws [some-thing] over his shoulder [to his enemy," as explained in Tanya, ch. 22].

And even that is by way of numerous and intense contractions and screens, until this radiation becomes vested in the materiality of this world, dispensing wealth and honor and all physical pleasures unto the nations.

Jews, however, elicit [their sustenance] from the Supernal Countenance [the panim, or pnimiyus, i.e., the innermost aspect of Divinity]; as it is written, (44) "May G-d make His Countenance shine upon you," each according to the source of his soul, up to the most elevated of levels.


39. Kohelet 7:14.
40. Zohar III, 41b; et al.
41. Ch. 2.
42. Kohelet 8:9.
43. The text here (in Hebrew and English) reinstates the
original version, which a czarist censor had tampered with
so that it read, "the heathens used to dominate the Jewish
people...." A few lines earlier, the word ata ("in the
present") had likewise been deleted.
44. Bamidbar 6:25.



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