Friday, December 7, 2007

Chochma vs. Bina - Part 7 - Unifying the Source With the Details

I highly recommend first reading the introduction to this series HERE. In this section, I'm translating several pieces from Rav Kook, compiled by my rebbe, which explain how, when learning Torah, one achieves the ultimate level of unifying the vast details of halacha (Bina) with their root source, the Master of the World (Chochma).

Oros Hatorah (?) 2:3

When one learns simple Torah ideas, he will see how the supernal light, from the highest form, descends until it resides so beautifully in the physical world. His heart will be expanded by all of [the Torah's words'] great preciousness and vigorous life, which flow from the source, the holy of holies, which fill the entire world only through the unique light of the Jewish people. Know clearly that this light, which is hidden within the words, letters, customs, actions, halachos, debates and logic, meets the supernal light which is above all of that, bathes in it, and plays together with it. This light, which gives life to all worlds, is filled with pleasure and great joy from the constant meeting which takes place through [Jewish people] learning Torah for its own sake, which makes peace among the hosts above and the hosts below.

Oros Hatorah 7:1 (?)

The connection between Hakadosh Baruch Hu and the Torah is the foundation of the holy work of [Hashem's] Chosen People. While we toil in halacha, it's sections and details, we know, as an overarching principal, that all of the words of the Torah are the Way of G-d, [and that they] flow from the higher source of life. However, in the soul, this Divine interweaving [between Hakadosh Baruch Hu and the Torah] is a living, Divine reality. The pleasantness of Hashem stirs inside it, and to whom closeness to G-d is better than any pleasure. And that delicate tapestry is felt in the heart of life. "My heart and my flesh call out to the Living G-d!" (Tehilim 84:3) And in order to lift up the value of this exalted feeling which is hidden in every nook and cranny of the Torah and all of its details, [one must use] that trait, that overarching feeling of loftiness, which excites the soul with pleasantness from above. This act, which comes from a high inner motivation, has the ability to tie the Torah to Hakadosh Baruch Hu. Meaning: to tie the detailed practical Torah below with the overarching, general Torah above.

Oros Hakodesh 4, page 402:

How great is my inner battle! My heart is filled with a high and broad spiritual tapestry. I [only] want the Divine pleasantness to continually spread out within me. Not because of the beneficial pleasure in [that feeling,] bur rather because this is how it must be. That is how reality stands. It is the substance of life.

I always [feel] heady. My inner essence roars, with great sound, "Give me the light of Hashem! The pleasure of the Living G-d and His delight! The great privelige and pleasure of visiting the chamber of the King of the Universe, Hashem, the G-d of my father, to Whom the love of my whole heart is given, and the fear of Whom lifts me up!"

My soul continually lifts its self up. It raises its self up above everyting low; the smallness and limitations that natural life, and the body, the environment and the conclusions which limit and pressure it like a vice, [trying to] completely push it to the side.

Obligations flood me. Learning and exacting study without end. Thorny ideas, putting forth exact logic in letters and words. [All of this] comes and surrounds my soul, which is clean and free, light as a bird, pure like the essence of heaven, drowning in a sea of light. But I have not yet reached this level, to look from the beginning until the end, to understand the pleasantness of a teaching, to feel the sweetness of every [logical Torah] derivation, to gaze at the light in the dark places of the world.

I am full of pain and I longing for salvation and light, for a supernal elevation, for a shot of knowledge and light and the dripping dew of life. Even in these narrow conduits [of Torah understanding] I may nurse and be satisfied. I shall delight in the pleasantness of Hashem. I shall understand the purity of [His] ideal will, the elevated necessity of [His] supernal power, which fills every letter and crown, every [word] and logical derivation. And I will delight in Your mitzvos which I love and talk about Your laws.

CLICK HERE to read the last part, part 8, another translation from Rav Kook where he puts it all together.

-Dixie Yid

(Picture courtesy of RT3)

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Izbitza said...

when did rebbe give these to year

DixieYid (يهودي جنوبي) said...

2007. :-)

-Dixie Yid

yitz said...

first of all it's great :) i love it and it connects with so many of the different sources i'm learning that express the same ideas just in (slightly) different terms.

(like you said, oro shel moshiach)

i just wanted to comment on one translation.. you used the word 'nurse' which is correct though i think it potentially creates a slightly different image.. perhaps you should consider using the world 'suckle' which is, in my humble opinion, a closer and richer match.. though i don't have the hebrew text in front of me, nor am I familliar with Rav Kook's writing...

here's the free dictionary definition for nurse while it mentions your connotation you will see it almost always uses the word 'suckle' to clarify the meaning.

this wasn't meant as a nitpick, just as a passing thought.. the word just caught me off guard.

DixieYid (يهودي جنوبي) said...

Yitz, thanks for the great comment. IY"H, tomorrow, I'll be posting the last part of this transalation, also from Rav Kook. I think that part is the most amazing but you'll see then. :-)

As for translating the word "yenika," in the context of drawing direct shefa and closeness with Hashem, the connotations work better for me to use the word "nurse" than "suckle." Thanks for the suggestion and please let me know whenver I catch you off guard again. :-)

-Dixie Yid