On Divine Inspiration – Chapter 33

Nevertheless, from an entirely different angle these two categories also possess a good and praiseworthy thing. That is, that when such a person realizes that he is not a receptacle to hear and become excited by G_dliness, even with intellectual acknowledgement, not to mention heartfelt excitement, this will bring him to an aspect of simple repentance. He will feel embittered and lowly to the very core of his being over the grossness of his physical body. Similarly, he will remember the sins of his youth and the like and will cry out spontaneously. This will come about without contemplation upon G_dliness altogether. Rather, it will be in a general manner, similar to the verse, “Their heart cried out to HaShem”[1], specifically with repentance from the depths of the heart, with tremendous bitterness or great submission.

What comes out of the above mentioned categories is that HaShem beholds the heart of the penitent who cries out to Him, if it is sincere. Since this comes about because of the arousal of the Divine soul, HaShem takes notice of it even if it is not accompanied by any contemplation. This is because it results from the arousal of the Divine soul. As mentioned above, it is possible for a Baal Teshuvah to have an arousal of the Yechidah of his Divine soul, to the point that the soul may expire. At the very least, he can have an arousal to repent from the aspect of the Ruach and Neshamah, which is a spontaneous cry during his prayers, as in the verse, “They cried out to HaShem in their distress”[2] or the verse, “Their heart cried out to HaShem.[3]

This type of excitement is part and parcel of Divine excitement, except that it comes about as a reaction to the opposing side and because of the great sense of remoteness from matters of G_dliness etc. On the other hand, when the Divine soul is in a state of closeness and adhesion to HaShem, it also becomes excited with a spontaneous cry in the heart of flesh, as in the above mentioned verse, “My heart and my flesh shall sing out to the Living G_d.”[4] We find that the two cries are identical, except that one comes from opposition and distance and the other comes from closeness etc. This is sufficient for those of understanding.

Now, there are many who erringly deride such a cry. However, in truth, they fail to see that this literally is what the statement in Tanya – Likutei Amarim[5] is referring to when it says, “Weeping is lodged in my heart from this side and joy is lodged in my heart from that side”[6] etc. Joy is the intellectual delight in G_dliness as it comes into the heart as heartfelt emotion etc. It is the “closeness” part of the Divine soul. Now, within the same level itself, the Divine soul is embittered and weeps, because of its remoteness from the One G_d etc. That is, there is simultaneous weeping from one side and joy from the other etc. In other words, the joy on one side and weeping on the other must exist together at every moment etc.

However, actually, in the two above mentioned categories only the second part, which is the matter of weeping, exists. This is an inner excitement of the Divine soul that is very pleasing to HaShem, as scripture states, “HaShem is close to the brokenhearted”[7] etc. This is broken-heartedness due to one’s unworthiness and remoteness from G_d, as known. This is sufficient for those of understanding.

[1] Lamentations  2:18

[2] Psalms 107:6

[3] Lamentations 2:18

[4] Psalms 84:3

[5] Tanya, Sefer shel Beinonim, chapter 34

[6] Zohar II 255a

[7] Psalms 34:19

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