Petach 97

From Atzilut downwards everything follows the present world’s governing order in the course of which things cycle until they achieve perfect benevolence. But from Attik upward everything is as it will be in eternity.

Attik is the central byway between one system of governance to another. And Adam Kadmon is comprised of the whole of existence and of all times.

מאצילות ולמטה הולך הכל לפי ענין ההנהגה של העוה”ז, שבה סובבים הדברים עד שמגיעים אל שלמות ההטבה. אך מעתיק ולמעלה – הכל הוא לפי מה שיהיה בנצחיות.

ועתיק הוא המעביר באמצע מהנהגה להנהגה. א”ק – כללות כל המציאות לכל הזמנים:

 

 

(c) 2015 Rabbi Yaakov Feldman

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Rabbi Feldman also offers two free e-mail classes on http://www.torah.org entitled “Spiritual Excellence” and “Ramchal”.

Petach 96

We now begin Section 17, entitled “The Connection between Atzilut and Adam Kadmon through Attik and Erich Anpin“, which is comprised of Petachim 96-100.

Here’s Petach 96:

התלבשות עתיק יומין בא”א הוא להחזיק אותו בכל ספירותיו לפי ענין המתקלא המושרש ברדל”א. ובזה הוא עומד תחת הנהגת א”ק מצד היסוד ומלכות שלו. כי כך נקבעו תחתיהם מ”ה וב”ן. והוא עיקר ההנהגה ההולכת להשלים השלמות.

Attik Yomin was engarbed in Erich Anpin in order to strengthen all of Erich’s Sephirot by means of the “balance” that’s rooted in The Unfathomable Beginning.

In this respect Erich Anpin is governed by Adam Kadmon through its Yesod and Malchut. For this is the way that MaH and BaN were established under them. In fact, this  particular combination of MaH and BaN is the essential order of governance to bring about complete perfection.

 

(c) 2015 Rabbi Yaakov Feldman

Feel free to contact me at feldman@torah.org

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Rabbi Yaakov Feldman has also translated and commented upon “The Path of the Just” and “The Duties of the Heart” (Jason Aronson Publishers).

Rabbi Feldman also offers two free e-mail classes on http://www.torah.org entitled “Spiritual Excellence” and “Ramchal”.

God’s goodness and mercy will always prevail

Though we haven’t exactly finished exploring the gist of Erich Anpin, we’ll add these fascinating remarks about it  that Ramchal offers in Klallei Milchamat Moshe (7).

He speaks there of an order of governance whose role is to allow for the preservation of the universe. Why would it need that? “It would be impossible for the universe to continue on as it is based on the actions of the lower entities”, i.e., based on humankind’s actions, given what we are. “It would have been destroyed a number of times already” if it depended on us.

Hence, “there’s an order of governance that’s rooted in benevolence, whose role is to manifest benevolence” and to disallow judgment to take its (rightful) toll. “This utterly benevolent order is termed Erich Anpin“. It functions this way at all junctures and covertly (as a rule). “And so the universe continues” thanks to it.   But sometimes it manifests itself overtly in known ways and for particular reasons, Ramchal concludes.

We would add that this statement affirms the deep hopes and faith of many that despite it all,  God’s goodness and mercy will always prevail in the end.

 

(c) 2015 Rabbi Yaakov Feldman

Feel free to contact me at feldman@torah.org

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Rabbi Yaakov Feldman has also translated and commented upon “The Path of the Just” and “The Duties of the Heart” (Jason Aronson Publishers).

Rabbi Feldman also offers two free e-mail classes on http://www.torah.org entitled “Spiritual Excellence” and “Ramchal”.

Three things about Zeir Anpin

Here’s the text of the end of Petach 95 again, and its explanations.

We must next understand that when it comes to Erich Anpin as the root rather than the generator of Zeir Anpin spoken of below and the mystical implications of its governance, we’re only to consider Erich‘s “skull” and “brain” which are cited in Iddrah Rabbah (122b). And we’re to consider their Tikkunim which are the other, non-governing elements like the “hairs”, the “nose”, and the like which the Iddrah Rabbah  cites there, according to their functions in the mystical idea of the overpowering of Erich‘s Chessed.

The Iddrah Zuta (288a), on the other hand, cites three governing element and doesn’t elucidate much about the aforementioned Tikkunim.  Thus were told that when it comes to the mystical idea of Erich generating Zeir Anpin rather than being its root spoken of above we’re to consider Erich‘s “three heads”, i.e., its “crown”, “cavity”, and “brain” and their Tikkunim which generate Tikkunim in Zeir Anpin. “Crown”, “cavity”, and “brain” allude to the left, right, and middle aspects of Zeir, which are an admixture of the thesis and antithesis of Chessed and Gevurah along with their synthesis of Rachamim. That’s in contrast to the Erich‘s exclusively Chessed-based form of governance.

As to the terms “Skull”, “Brain”, “Crown”, and “Cavity”, which are found in the Zohar and in Ari’s writings, they’re openly and decidedly anthropomorphic. Each element refers to things in Adam Kadmon that don’t affect us now. Suffice it to note that the “skull” is underneath the head’s “crown” and it’s comprised of a “cavity” within which sits the “brain”.

This completes Section Sixteen.

(c) 2015 Rabbi Yaakov Feldman

Feel free to contact me at feldman@torah.org

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Rabbi Yaakov Feldman has also translated and commented upon “The Path of the Just” and “The Duties of the Heart” (Jason Aronson Publishers).

Rabbi Feldman also offers two free e-mail classes on http://www.torah.org entitled “Spiritual Excellence” and “Ramchal”.

Two things about Erich Anpin (2)

The end of Petach 95 is rather complex and calls for a lot of explanation based on Ari’s writings. But as it has never been our intention to offer a comprehensive and fully enunciated layout of the Kabbalistic system, we’ll only touch on the major points here and offer references for further study.

The actual subject at hand is based on two Zohar-based renderings of the makeup of Erich Anpin: one from Iddrah Rabbah and another from Iddrah Zutah.

Here’s the text of the Petach, which we’ll follow with explanations.

We must next understand that when it comes to Erich Anpin as the root of Zeir Anpin and the mystical implications of its governance, we’re only to consider Erich‘s “skull” and “brain” and their Tikkunim according to their functions in the mystical idea of the overpowering of Erich‘s Chessed.

Yet when it comes to the mystical idea of Erich generating Zeir Anpin we’re to consider Erich‘s “three heads”, i.e., its “crown”, “cavity”, and “brain” and their Tikkunim which generate Tikkunim in Zeir Anpin.

 

(c) 2015 Rabbi Yaakov Feldman

Feel free to contact me at feldman@torah.org

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Rabbi Yaakov Feldman has also translated and commented upon “The Path of the Just” and “The Duties of the Heart” (Jason Aronson Publishers).

Rabbi Feldman also offers two free e-mail classes on http://www.torah.org entitled “Spiritual Excellence” and “Ramchal”.

Two things about Erich Anpin (1)

Petach 95 then completes this section with the statement that since Zeir Anpin is derived from Erich Anpin we must understand two things about Erich Anpin itself.

First, those aspects of Erich’s governance that are based on its intrinsic nature, that is, how Erich intrinsically governs through its characteristic beneficence. And we’ve considered that above. But there’s another aspect of it we must understand.

 

(c) 2015 Rabbi Yaakov Feldman

Feel free to contact me at feldman@torah.org

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Rabbi Yaakov Feldman has also translated and commented upon “The Path of the Just” and “The Duties of the Heart” (Jason Aronson Publishers).

Rabbi Feldman also offers two free e-mail classes on http://www.torah.org entitled “Spiritual Excellence” and “Ramchal”.

It’s sometimes necessary for benevolence to prevail over judgment (2)

This occurs when the irradiation of Erich Anpin prevails over Zeir Anpin and removes its strict judgments completely [1].

Footnote:

[1]         The latter occurs on Shabbat at certain points in tephilla, as is indicated in Iddrah Rabbah 139a.

 

(c) 2015 Rabbi Yaakov Feldman

Feel free to contact me at feldman@torah.org

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Rabbi Yaakov Feldman has also translated and commented upon “The Path of the Just” and “The Duties of the Heart” (Jason Aronson Publishers).

Rabbi Feldman also offers two free e-mail classes on http://www.torah.org entitled “Spiritual Excellence” and “Ramchal”.

It’s sometimes necessary for benevolence to prevail over judgment (1)

Petach 94 then adds that it’s sometimes necessary for benevolence to prevail over judgment and to bring about kindness even when the actual letter of the law wouldn’t call for that — in order for the world to survive [1]. This happens only sometimes and only by specific means, Ramchal adds in is comments here.

It’s nonetheless an awe-inspiring thought, though, that — despite His own wishes that the world be based on the letter of the law, and on responsibility and maturity on our part — God will still-and-all bypass the strict rule of law when necessary, for the greater good.

That’s a function of the mitzvah-system, he adds. For while some mitzvot effect specific Tikkunim i.e., they rectify one’s own errors and others’ too on a smaller, local level, other mitzvot rectify on a grander, more encompassing scale [2]. That’s to say that neither just anyone or any deed can effect this beneficence; there are specifics involved.

Footnotes:

[1]         See Da’at Tevunot 139, 154.

[2]         Ramchal speaks of the mitzvah of shofar in that context in Derech Hashem 4:7:4.

 

(c) 2015 Rabbi Yaakov Feldman

Feel free to contact me at feldman@torah.org

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Rabbi Yaakov Feldman has also translated and commented upon “The Path of the Just” and “The Duties of the Heart” (Jason Aronson Publishers).

Rabbi Feldman also offers two free e-mail classes on http://www.torah.org entitled “Spiritual Excellence” and “Ramchal”.

Erich Anpin and its counterpart Zeir Anpin (4)

The point is that it’s Erich Anpin’s makeup itself that mitigates the judgments of Zeir Anpin. And it does that without having to intensify its irradiations over Zeir Anpin in order to bypass the latter’s judgment, which is another sort of Tikkun used to disallow judgment to reign — though it would continue to exist, as Ramchal offers elsewhere [1]. He then reminds us that judgment isn’t meant to be undone yet, just not to hold complete sway [2].

Footnote:

[1]         See Clallim Rishonim 21; also see Pitchei Chochma v’Da’at 84.

[2]         See Clallim Rishonim 21.

 

(c) 2015 Rabbi Yaakov Feldman

Feel free to contact me at feldman@torah.org

———————————————–

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Rabbi Yaakov Feldman has also translated and commented upon “The Path of the Just” and “The Duties of the Heart” (Jason Aronson Publishers).

Rabbi Feldman also offers two free e-mail classes on http://www.torah.org entitled “Spiritual Excellence” and “Ramchal”.

Erich Anpin and its counterpart Zeir Anpin (3)

There’s more to be said about the relationship of Erich Anpin and Zeir Anpin, and that will the gist of Petach 93.

The very fact that judgment emerges for the meanwhile for the sake of utter benevolence alone actually mitigates judgment. That’s to say that judgment achieves a sort of merit for living up to its role which is its mitigation (i.e., its being “sweetened” as its termed in the original).

Judgment — which is to say the system of reward and punishment and the like — is given sway for the meanwhile, to be sure, but again the point is that benevolence — which is not merit-based — will reign in the end. For a king’s ultimate goal is to be benevolent, even when that’s not always evident. Understand that God could very well have allowed the universe to function through rank judgment alone ad infinitum, but He didn’t want to, as Ramchal underscores in his comments.

 

(c) 2015 Rabbi Yaakov Feldman

Feel free to contact me at feldman@torah.org

———————————————–

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Rabbi Yaakov Feldman has also translated and commented upon “The Path of the Just” and “The Duties of the Heart” (Jason Aronson Publishers).

Rabbi Feldman also offers two free e-mail classes on http://www.torah.org entitled “Spiritual Excellence” and “Ramchal”.