On Divine Inspiration – Chapter 25

Now, certainly, the aspect of being occupied in deed by desisting from evil and doing good due to the influence of the Divine soul, begins with thought. Thisis the desire for G_dliness within one’s thought – at least to do His will in deeds and not to actually transgress it etc. However, on this level, this thought lacks any inner illumination and vitality. Rather, it is dispassionate, similar to what was mentioned above about the level of dispassionate thought in the natural soul in contemplating G_dliness. That is, he regards it as being precious and sublime, but from a distance, like something that does not at all belong to him, but that he very much wishes were his. Because he truly accepts it as the “truth of reality,” therefore, he desires that it be established in his soul etc. This gives birth to the aspect of “resolve”, at least in deed etc.

Similarly, in the Divine soul, the cause that produces the essential “resolve” in deed to resist evil and do good, is the resolve within thought, which is the aspect of “faith.” However, it is still very distant from him because the imperative to fulfill HaShem’s will has no inner vitality of closeness to G_d for him. This is because the G_dly aspect here comes in a very hidden manner.

For example, the name of Heaven is fluent in all mouths, including women and ignorant folk. They mention HaShem’s name at every opportunity; that HaShem is blessed, that He saves and aids (He is praised). But there are no inner feelings at all in these praises because, at the very same moment the same person could do something which is literally the opposite of G_d’s will, such as the statement in Talmud, “When a burglar stands at the opening of a breach in the wall he calls out to the Merciful One”[1] – to aid him in the burglary etc. But if he believes that HaShem comes to his aid, why does he transgress His will by committing theft!

The reason is only because, to him, these are two separate things. On the one hand, the faiththat HaShem comes to everyone’s aid is firmly established in his Divine soul in a natural and essential aspect, because He created everything and He is a simple unity etc. The theft, on the other hand, comes about because of the lusts of his natural soul etc. This being the case, it is quite possible for a person to truly pray for HaShem to help him with success during a burglary etc.

This is evidence that even in a case where G-dliness is extremely concealed in one’s faith, it is natural to him. As known, the word for faith-Emunah, is related to the word Uman-a skilled craftsman. This is an inherited trait from our ancestors, Avraham, Yitzchak and Yaakov, and has become like a natural trait in their descendents etc. It is this aspect of the natural and essential resolve of the Divine soul that produces the specific deeds of desisting from evil and doing good, because one greatly believes in the One G_d, so that it is like nature for him not to transgress G_d’s will etc.

(The proof of this is the act of giving up one’s life for the sanctification of HaShem’s name, in which the power of this faith radiates in an inner way, to the point that he actually chooses to give up his life for G_d’s sake, rather than forsake Him). This is so even though there can be an admixture of good and evil in the good deed etc., such as a person who gives charity solely for the purpose of self-aggrandizement or for some other ulterior motive. Nonetheless, the sages said, “One who says, ‘I give this coin so that my son should live’, is perfectly righteous.[2]

This is because from the angle of the Divine soul he naturally desires to give charity, whereas the fact that he says “Only that my son should live” comes from the natural soul which covers over and conceals the Divine soul etc. The same principle applies to giving charity for self-aggrandizement or the like.

(Which is not the case regarding the idolatrous nations. Whatever they do is to benefit themselves. This comes from the root of their souls. With the exception of the righteous of the nations and the like, their souls are from the aspect of the three impure shells).

[1] Berachot 63a

[2] Pesachim 8a

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