In the previous post, we left off in the middle of the notes of R’ Maltzin on chapter 11, number 6. Here we continue.
Just as the the sun’s rays pour out upon the moon and stars, so too, in every generation, there is a spark of Moshe Rabbenu that shines through someone in the generation, pouring out its light on all the Torah scholars of the generation. All new Torah ideas that come into the world are through the influx of the light of Moshe Rabbenu (Tikkunei Zohar 42:3). His (Moshe’s) light suffers with the Torah scholars who are disgraced in the final exile, and who are pursued by the Erev Rav. This is referred to in the Gemara (Sotah 49) that says, “The wisdom of the learned will be made repulsive, those who fear sin will be disgusting, those who steer away from evil will be seen as if they were mad.” This is what we find in the verse (Yeshaya 53), “He is made profane for our sins…” The entire passage there is speaking about the Torah scholars in the current exile (*) (Tikkunei Zohar 41:2 117:4 118:1 74:3 Tikkunei Zohar Chadash 35:4 8:1 Raya Mehemna 38:2 17:2). This [suffering of the light of Moshe] is a punishment that corresponds precisely to the mistake that he made in allowing the Erev Rav to become part of the Jewish people. The result was that they made the golden calf, resulting in the destruction of the tablets, which causes the Torah to be forgotten in exile (Tikkunei Zohar 105:2). This is what the verse means when Hashem says to Moshe (Shemos 32), “Go down.” This hints to the lowering and descent [we have just spoken of]. If one removes the letters of the word ר”ע, [which are רי”ש and עי”ן, from the word Erev Rav (ערב רב),] one is left with [the letters ר-ב-ב, whose numerical value is the same as the word] רד, go down (Tikkunei Zohar 41:1 97:4). Any generation that does not have the shine of the light of Moshe Rabbenu is not included in the calculation of fifty generations. This is the reason for the length of the exile, as [the light] does not find a place to reveal itself. Therefore the redemption from exile is dependent on the study of Kabbalah which is the teaching of Moshe Rabbenu (Raya Mehemna 77:1 82:2). (It seems to me that it must incarnate three times in order for him to attain the fiftieth level that he lost when he broke the tablets, which represented the dimension of freedom. See Raya Mehemna 15:1, Tikkunei Zohar 43:1 129:3 163:1.)
Rebbe Shimon Bar Yochai and those who stood with him were able to merit to commune with that spark of Moshe itself at the time they were redacting the Tikkunim and the Raya Mehemna, because these two books are connected to each other. Also, the concept of a maggid [angel] that comes to speak to a person is his soul itself (**), however its way is to speak with him mouth to mouth [i.e. directly]. It is enclothed in the commandments that he fulfilled (Raya Mehemna 75:2).
(*) It is interesting that the Christians take this verse to refer to their mistaken Messiah, Yeshu Hanotzri. The verse is actually referring to the suffering of the Jewish people, and specifically, as we see here, the great sages of the Jewish people, who suffer horrible indignation as a result of the sins of the world and the people of Israel. Ironically, the verses, when seen in context, are actually speaking of the recognition of the nations of the world when Moshiach comes, that it was the Jewish people who had suffered all along in order to bring about the full rectification of the world.
(**) This seems to mean Moshe’s soul. Here, instead of being an indirect light which shines from the soul of Moshe via the great sage and into the the scholar saying a new idea, there is a direct communication with the soul of Moshe which reveals the idea in question. This is interesting, because I have seen other sources that say that a maggid is actually an angelic embodiment of the Torah that one has learned. Just as each mitzvah a person fulfills creates an angel, so too, an angel is created from the Torah one learns. The maggid is this very angel who reveals himself to the one who created him and explains to him the depth of the Torah. These two ideas could be reconciled by the fact that the Torah itself is referred to as the Torah of Moshe, and thus, it is, to a certain extent, the embodiment of the soul of Moshe that is being resuscitated, as it were, by the scholar who studies the Torah. This in turn communes with the scholar, revealing the depths of the idea he is learning. This is a very novel idea that may or may not be correct, and requires deeper thought.
The Torah is referred to as a woman who has completed the first stage of marriage (ארוסה), as we find in the gemara (Pesachim 49), “Whoever learns Torah in front of an ignoramus [who will certainly misunderstand the intent of the Torah], it is as if he had marital relations with his ארוסה in front of him.” It is referred to as an ארוסה because the first stage of connection was completed at Sinai, as we find in the verse, “Moshe commanded us the Torah, an inheritance (מורשה).” Instead of reading it ‘an inheritance’ (מורשה), it can also be read ‘betrothed’ (מאורסה). It is not considered that one has completed the marriage until one has learned the Torah, like the verse says, “Only if the Torah of Hashem is his desire, and he studies his Torah night and day.” At first, it is the Torah of Hashem, and then it becomes the scholar’s Torah. The inner aspect of the Torah, however, was not even merited by Moshe Rabbenu to access completely (see Zohar Beha’aloscha 152:1, and Nefesh Hachaim Sha’ar 2, ch. 17), and therefore he did not merit to enter Eretz Yisrael. This occurred as a result of breaking the tablets and striking the stone. Because of this, he did not merit to enter Eretz Yisrael and to complete the marriage with his betrothed, the inner aspect of the Torah (*). It is all in Yisrael that did not merit to learn Torah from the tree of life, [and will not do so] until the future, when they will be alone like Yakov(**). See Nefesh D’Yakov. The people of Israel will return to Hashem in repentance, the Erev Rav will be destroyed, and the original tablets will return. [This will be their first encounter with the original tablets,] as they were never revealed to the Jewish people at all, because they were destroyed the moment they were brought down. (This is what it means there, that the people of Israel are His betrothed, because the completion of the marriage was dependent on the tablets being given over to them; once they were in the hands of Moshe, the betrothal had taken place, but they had not completed the second stage of the marriage. Tikkunei Zohar 42:4, 43:3 104:3-4 Raya Mehemna 67:2 68.)
(*) As we have discussed in the past, Eretz Yisrael is the place of ultimate connection between the physical world and the spiritual world. It is the ‘bris’ of the world, the point of connection between the male and female aspects of reality. Thus, as long as Moshe did not enter Eretz Yisrael, he did not merit the completed connection with the deeper aspects of the Torah, which embodies the true intimate relationship between man and Hashem. This is also the secret that underlies the special aspect of learning Torah in Israel. It is a spiritual fact that there is no Torah learning like that which is done here in Israel, and it is because the Torah, which represents the connection to Hashem, can only be properly learned to its fullest in the place where one experiences the greatest connection to Hashem that is possible.
(**) The Torah says that Yakov was alone when he went back to retrieve the small vessels. At that point, he fought with the angel of Esav, which represents the cosmic battle between the Jewish people and the forces of evil that culminates at the end of days. Just as Yakov was completely alone, so too the Jewish people will be alone in this final battle, w
ith none to come to their aid. This scenario is clearly developing in the world today, and should not be cause for alarm, but rather, a clear sign of the redemption that awaits us in the near future. The end result of Yakov being alone was that he succeeded in vanquishing the forces of evil that were embodied in the angel of Esav, and he received the lofty name Yisrael. This name represents the ability of the Jewish people to rise up and become Hashem’s partner in bringing His awareness into the world. This is rooted in the inner aspects of the Torah that are revealed to the Jewish people in the final stage, when they are truly alone in the world. This point will be the completion of the marriage that began at Sinai, and will also be the moment of the world’s recognition that the Jewish people are the nation that Hashem has chosen to be His bride.
There is a similarity we find to the exodus from Egypt, where Moshe had difficulty with his speech and Aharon was sent to speak on his behalf. This means that Moshe would say a concept in an unclear manner, and Aharon would explain it. This is similar to how it will also be in the future. At the current time in our state of exile, the law is not clear in certain places, and there are many difficulties with no explanation to be found amongst the scholars. This is because the light of Moshe is not shining in them, as we said earlier. This corresponds to the concept that Moshe had ‘difficulty in his speech.’ In the future, Moshe will say the concept in a hidden way, the way we currently perceive it. The reason he will not say it clearly is so that people do not think that it is a new Torah, heaven forbid, or that it is not the Torah we have now. Eliyahu, who is really Pinchos, who is a descendant of Aharon, will be the one who will ‘speak on his behalf’. This means that he will make it explicit, explaining all the difficulties, and it will be new to us (The Gra’s explanation of Raya Mehemna 28:1, 78:1, Devarim 1:5). It seems that this idea is as we discussed above in Siman 21 in chapter 8, that as long as one does not understand the level of sod, even the simple understanding is unclear. In the future, since the secrets of the Torah will be revealed, as we saw above in Siman 11, the simple understanding will also be clarified along the way. See Heichalos Pekudei 48:2.