Inapoi la pagina 1990 (ŞLAVEY HASULAM (TREPTELE SCĂRII) – link
What It Means that the Land Did Not Bear Fruit before Man Was Created, in the Work
Article No. 5, Tav-Shin-Nun, 1989-90
It is written in The Zohar (VaYera, Item 1), “Rabbi Hiya started, ‘The buds appeared on the earth; the time of pruning has come.’ This means that when the Creator created the world, He placed in the earth all the power it deserves, and everything was in the land. Yet, it did not bear fruit in the world until man was created. When man was created, everything appeared in the world and the land revealed the fruits and forces that were deposited in it. And then it was said, ‘The buds appeared on the earth, the time of pruning has come, and the voice of the turtledove was heard in our land.’ This is the speaking of the Creator, which was absent in the world before man was created. Once man is present, everything is present.”
We should understand why the land did not bear its fruit before man was created. What is the connection between the earth and man, where if there is no man, although the land has everything, it still does not bear its fruits before there is man? Also, what does it mean that before man was created, the speaking of the Creator was not present in the world? After all, it is written several times, “And God said, ‘Let there be light.’”
We should interpret this in the work. Our sages said about the verse, “In the beginning God created,” that it is for Israel, who were called Resheet [beginning], as it is written, “The sanctity of Israel, the Resheet [beginning] of its crop.” This means as it is written, that the purpose of the creation of the world was to do good to His creations. That is, He created in the creatures a desire to receive delight and pleasure, and in this desire, meaning that this desire causes him to yearn to receive the delight and pleasure. By this the delight and pleasure that a person can derive from there is measured.
This is called “the work of the Creator,” meaning that He created a desire to enjoy for the pleasure that He wants to give them. It turns out that nothing is missing in the world; there is abundance that belongs to the will to receive. That is, to the extent that He wanted to give delight and pleasure, to that extent He created a Kli [vessel] for this. This means that the will to receive is not greater than the Creator created it, so he can receive what the Creator wants to give. It follows that the delight and pleasure are present, the Kli to receive is present, so what else is missing?
It is known that the land is called Malchut. That is, the desire to receive the abundance from the Creator is called Malchut. This means that Malchut receives the abundance for the souls, as for this reason Malchut is called “the assembly of Israel,” which is the collection of the souls. It follows that Malchut already received all the light for the souls. The question is, Why do the creatures not receive from Malchut the abundance she received for the creatures, and there is the power of concealment in the world, so the voice of the turtledove is not heard in our land, meaning that the speaking of the Creator is not heard in the world, but rather each one feels the concealment and there is a lot of work to believe in His Providence over the created beings, and the delight and pleasure are not revealed in the world?
The answer is that it is because the Creator did not want there to be shame. For this reason, there was a correction, called Tzimtzum [restriction] and concealment so the upper Providence will not be revealed. Instead, we must believe that the Creator leads the world as the good who does good. This causes us all the work, that we must exert and relinquish the will to receive for ourselves, although this is our entire reality.
In other words, everything that we relate to the creatures is only a will to receive. Yet, it is forbidden to use the will to receive as it emerged by nature, but we must go above nature. In other words, our nature is the will to receive for ourselves. It follows that when a person is told we must relinquish the will to receive for ourselves, there is not an organ in us that will be able to understand this. The body begins to ask the “Who” and “What” questions, meaning demands an intellectual answer if the Creator truly hears each and every one who asks of Him.
The body argues to a person, “You see that you have asked the Creator many times to help you with what you think you need. Until now, you see that you have received no answer to the prayer. Therefore, why do you say each day, ‘For You hear the prayer of every mouth’? If this is so, why is He not helping you?” It follows that reason asserts that the body is right, meaning that it is making a reasonable and sensible argument.
We must answer the body about this that we are going above reason. That is, although reason asserts that the Creator does not accept the prayer of every mouth, meaning that he can explain the fact that the Creator is not answering him as because he is still unfit to receive the salvation from the Creator, but in truth, the Creator does hear the prayer of Israel. It is only to you that He does not want to answer the prayer you made, since you are not regarded as Israel.
The body asks once more, “You see that we must believe that ‘You hear the prayer of every mouth,’ as we say in the prayer, ‘For You hear the prayer of every mouth.’ Thus, the Creator should have heard your prayer, as well. Moreover, if He does not hear the prayer of every mouth, then why do you need to pray?”
Then, when a person comes to such a state, he can say that he is going above reason. That is, although reason is very important, and he sees that the body speaks with reason, but a person should say that we must go above reason. That is, we, too, see contradictions, such as that many times he prayed but received no answer for his prayer. But then, when he overcomes and goes above reason, this is called “faith above reason.”
Likewise, when a person must relinquish the quality of the heart and say, “I relinquish the self-benefit and care only for the benefit of the Creator,” of course this is above reason. In other words, above reason means that a person should say that to him, faith is at a higher level than reason. For this reason, he obeys the voice of faith and not the voice of reason. This is against reason, since we see that we were given reason and we measure every person according to the level of his intellect, as it is written, “A man will be praised according to his mind” (Proverbs 12), and one who has more reason is a more important person. Therefore, when we are told that we must go above reason, it is against our reason.
For this reason, when a person comes to a state where the body begins to ask the “Who” and “What” questions, then begins the real work. Then we must ask for the help of the Creator to give us the strength not to hear these questions of Pharaoh and the wicked one, which are “Who” and “What.” It was said about this, “Were it not for the help of the Creator, he would not overcome it,” since a person cannot emerge from their control by himself and say, “I am going above reason,” since it is against nature.
According to the above, we can interpret what we asked, What is the connection between the land that did not bear its fruit before man was created? In the work, man is regarded as one who has emerged from the control of the quality of a beast. A “beast” means one who is immersed in self-benefit, like a beast, and man means one in whom there is fear of heaven and works because of fear, which The Zohar calls “Because He is great and ruling,” where he works only because of the greatness of the Creator and does not care for his own benefit, but for the benefit of the Creator. It is as our sages said about the verse, “In the end of the matter, fear God and observe His commandments, for this is the whole of man. What is ‘for this is the whole of man’? Rabbi Elazar said, ‘The whole world was created only for this’” (Berachot 6).
It follows that man is regarded as one in whom there is the fear of heaven. And what is the fear of heaven? That is, what is fear? It is as he says (“Introduction of The Book of Zohar,” Item 191), “Both the first fear and the second fear are not for his own benefit, but only for fear that he will decline in bringing contentment to his Maker.”
According to the above, we already know the meaning of Adam. It is one who has fear of heaven, who is afraid that perhaps he will not be able to do everything in order to bestow. This is called “man.” A “beast” is the opposite: one who cares only for one’s own benefit, as it is written (Ecclesiastes 3), “Who knows the spirit of man, whether it goes upward, and the spirit of the beast, whether it goes downward to the earth?” We should interpret that “spirit of man” goes upward means that everything he does is for the sake of the Creator. This is called “upward,” when his intention is that everything will be only in order to bestow. From this man derives contentment.
The “spirit of the beast” is that in everything he does, he wants it all for “downward,” meaning “down to the earth,” which is worldliness, for the will to receive for oneself is called “earth.” When that person does things, he sees that it will be only for his own benefit. From this he derives spirit, meaning his contentment. That is, he will enjoy his actions only if it yields benefit for himself. If he sees that the will to receive cannot enjoy it, he will not have strength to work. If he must work for some reason, then he is not in a good mood at all.
Now we can understand the connection between man and earth. We asked, What does it mean that the earth did not bear its fruit in the world before man was created although all the power it deserved and everything was already in the land? The thing is that in the work, “land” is the kingdom of heaven, which is the assembly of Israel, who receives abundance for the created beings, since all the souls come from her. From the perspective of the Creator, everything is already corrected in the best possible way.
It is as he says (“Introduction to The Book of Zohar,” Item 13), “The thing is that by the very thought to create the souls, His thought completed everything, for He does not need an act, as do we. Instantaneously, all the souls and all the worlds that are destined to be created emerged filled with all the delight and pleasure that the souls were intended to receive at the end of correction, after the will to receive in the souls has been fully corrected and has been turned into pure bestowal. This is so because in His eternalness, past, present, and future are as one.”
By this we should interpret the connection between man and the earth, which is that if man is present, the earth bears its fruit. The “earth” means the will to receive that has been fully corrected. From the perspective of the Creator, everything has been completed in utter perfection and there is nothing to add to it, as he says, “Instantaneously, all the souls emerged filled with all the delight and pleasure.” However, in order for the creatures to enjoy the fruits of Malchut, which she received, Malchut, which is called “land,” does not give this to the created beings before they correct the will to receive to work in order to bestow, due to the correction that took place, so there will be in them the matter of equivalence of form.
It turns out that as long as a person has not achieved the degree of “man,” which is regarded as bestowing upward, as in “the spirit of man goes upward,” meaning that “man” means that everything he does is for the sake of the Creator, while the spirit of the beast “goes downward,” meaning for his own benefit, Malchut, which is called “earth,” cannot show the delight and pleasure she received for the created beings.
The Zohar says, “The buds appeared on the earth,” meaning that everything was in the earth, but it did not bear fruit in the world until man was created. Before the created being achieved the quality of “man,” the Creator does not see any fruits from Malchut, which is called “earth.”
Now we can understand what we asked about The Zohar saying that “the voice of the turtle dove was heard in our land” is the speaking of the Creator, who was not present in the world before man was created, though it is written many times in the Torah, “And God said,” before man was created. The meaning is that before a person achieves the degree of “man,” meaning emerges from the state of a beast, the “man” is in concealment and it is impossible to hear the voice of the Creator.
This is regarded as the “speaking of the Creator was not present in the world before the quality of man was created.” Only afterward, when a person achieves the degree of “man,” he hears the “speaking of the Creator.” The “speaking of the Creator” is called Torah, and then he is rewarded with the Torah, which is called “the names of the Creator.” This is called the “speaking of the Creator.” It is not that the Torah is a wisdom, as with other wisdoms. Rather, the Torah is the speaking of the Creator.
Not easily can one achieve the degree of “man” and emerge from the quality of a beast. This is so because in the work of the Creator, one is always in oppositeness of form, and only out of two extremes, a middle line is born. It is as it is written in the poem by the ARI, “Right and left, and in between them a bride.” This means that through the right and the left, which are two opposites, the kingdom of heaven, called “bride,” is born.
It is known that Malchut is called “faith.” To be rewarded with faith, we must first emerge from the state of a beast, called “self-love,” as was said that the spirit of the beast goes downward. Downward means decreasing in importance, which is the quality of a beast, which can only work for its own sake.
While the creature is still under the control of the will to receive for himself, he can receive only partial faith. This means that he has descents and ascents. During the descents, he loses the power of faith because the descent comes to him due to some flaw, and all the flaws come to the creature while he is immersed in self-love. For this reason, there is a correction for the creature so as not to blemish the King: He loses the faith in the existence of the King, as explained in the “Introduction of The Book of Zohar” (Item 138, beginning with the words, “It is a law”).
Since there is a rule that a person cannot walk on one leg, but only on two legs, this points to spirituality, too. “Right” implies wholeness. That is, the first beginning, when the creature wants to begin the work of the Creator, is that he must believe in the Creator. It does not matter how much faith he has, but with whatever faith he has, he can already begin to observe Torah and Mitzvot[commandments/good deeds], and each day he adds as much as he can.
However, this state is not regarded as “right,” but as “one line.” This is called “still of Kedusha[holiness].” From this still emerge all other degrees, called “vegetative,” “animate,” and “speaking,” as it is written (Ecclesiastes 3), “All was from the dust.” The Zohar interprets, “even the wheel of the sun” (Tzav, Item 173). That is, everyone must begin in still of Kedusha.
However, we should know that as with the corporeal still, a person does not need to make efforts in order for the still to be revealed. Rather, the still develops according to the development of nature. In other words, if a person does not spoil the corporeal still, it develops. For example, if a person does not spoil the earth or takes out stones from the earth, the still develops.
It is the same with the still of Kedusha. If he does not spoil his actions, his still of Kedusha develops. However, it does not require any intention or thought in order to continue his quality of still of Kedusha.
Conversely, if he wants to acquire the quality of “vegetative,” we see that in corporeality, the vegetative already requires special treatment. It needs to be given food, meaning water and sun, and to fix the still from which the vegetative will grow, namely plowing and so forth. Also, other plants, which do not belong to the plant that the person wants to grow out of the still, must be removed, so in corporeality, weeds that have intermingled are uprooted.
Likewise, in the vegetative of Kedusha, we must dedicate thought and desire to nursing this still, meaning plowing. That is, we must turn the will to receive in us to work in order to bestow, and then it is relevant to speak of work in “right” and “left.” That which was previously one line, which is the act, a person must use it as the “right line,” meaning that he should appreciate the simple act and say that he is grateful to the Creator for rewarding him with doing simple works in utter simplicity, and to say that he is not worth even this—that the Creator gave him the present of serving Him in simplicity.
At the same time, he must shift to the left line, meaning criticize himself if he is truly working for the Creator or for himself, meaning for his own benefit and not for the benefit of the Creator. He should pray for this, that he is so immersed in self-love.
Sometimes, he sees that he cannot pray that the Creator will help him and deliver him from the governance of self-love. Sometimes, he is even in a worse state—that he does not even want to pray the Creator will bring him out of self-love. On the contrary, he wants the Creator to help him satisfy his will to receive for himself with every possible satisfaction. This is called “left,” since in spirituality, something that requires correction is called “left.”
It follows that there are two opposites here. On one hand, a person is told that the order of the work is that a person should try to observe the one line to the fullest. That is, as when the creature was in a state of still, called “one line,” and felt himself as whole and was happy and glad because he knew that he had wholeness and all he needed to add was quantity.
But the reason was that he had no idea about the vegetative. He thought that the still is the wholeness that man must do. Therefore, he felt high spirited because of the feeling of wholeness and he could not understand why all the creatures were not as smart as him.
But now that he has a notion of the quality of “vegetative,” he no longer has the wholeness of the one line. For this reason, now he must make great efforts to be able to appreciate and derive vitality from the right, as he received from it while being in one line. The reason for this is that the left line makes him see that this is not wholeness.
Indeed, why do we need to walk on the right line? The answer is that this is the truth. That is, a person should indeed consider the little bit of grip he has on Kedusha as a great fortune, and this is the time to thank the Creator. Afterward, he should return to the left line, for this is also true, that we must work for the sake of the Creator. Out of those two, from the wholeness and importance of the right, and from the lack of the left, a person is rewarded with the middle line. This is the meaning of “Right and left, and in between the bride.”
Inapoi la pagina 1990 (ŞLAVEY HASULAM (TREPTELE SCĂRII) – link