|Holidays Shabbat Chabad-houses Chassidism Subscribe Calendar Links|
|The Weekly Publication for Every Jewish Person|
As Divided for a Regular Year
Tanya for 8 Adar
One may lend this teshuvah - [the restoration of his soul to its source] - additional strength from the depths of his heart, and likewise add a greater measure of light and joy to the joy of his soul [brought on by the teshuvah], by comforting his heart from its distress and sorrow, through reflecting [lit., "speaking to his heart]" with knowledge and understanding, as follows:
"Certainly it is true, [as said above, that I am utterly remote from G-d, etc.]; but it was not I who created myself [in a manner that permits the divine soul to be exiled within the impurity of the body and animal soul. It was G-d Who created me thus].
"Why then has G-d done such a thing - to cause [the divine soul] a part of His light which fills and encompasses all worlds and before which all is as naught, to descend into [the body], and be clothed in a `serpent's skin' and a `fetid drop'?
"Surely this descent must be for the sake of a subsequent ascent.
"That is, to elevate to G-d the entire animating, animal soul, which derives from kelipat nogah, and also its `garments' of thought, speech and action, by means of clothing them in the action, speech and thought of the Torah.
[For by performing the mitzvot, and by speaking and thinking words of Torah, the animal soul and its `garments' are elevated toward G-dliness].
"If this be so, there is one thing for me to do, and this shall be my sole aim throughout my life:
To immerse therein - in the thought, speech and action of the Torah and the mitzvot - the life of my spirit and soul, as it is written,  "To You, G-d, I raise my soul."
"[In practical terms], this means: To bind my thought and speech with G-d's thought and speech - which are, in fact, the very laws which have been set out before us.
[For the laws of the Torah are G-d's "thought" and " speech," and by studying them one binds his own faculties of thought and speech with their Divine counterparts].
Similarly with action: [I will bind my faculty of action with G-d's faculty of action], through performing the commandments.
For this reason, the Torah is described as  "that which restores the soul," [i.e., it restores the soul] to its source and root.
[Moreover], concerning this [occupation in the Torah and the mitzvot which brings joy to the soul by restoring it to its source, and which banishes the sadness of its exile in the body and animal soul], it is written:  "G-d's commandments are just; they gladden the heart."
[When one considers that one's study of the Torah and observance of the mitzvot elevate not only his divine soul, but also his animal soul, his teshuvah will gain in depth, and the joy of his soul will gain in inte\nsity.
For although the soul's "escape" from exile within the body and animal soul (spoken of earlier) would in itself be sufficient cause for great joy, yet this is a joy tempered by sadness over the lowly state in which one's body and animal soul remain.
When one realizes, however, that Torah and the mitzvot elevate the body and animal soul as well, his joy will be untarnished].
- (Back to text) Parentheses are in the original text.
- (Back to text) Chapters 35, 36, and 37.
- (Back to text) Tehillim 25:1.
- (Back to text) Ibid., 19:8.
- (Back to text) Ibid., 19:9.
| About |