Polish Jewish Thinker, Talmudist and Hassidic Leader
Zadok ha-Kohen Rabinowitz of Lublin
Polish Jewish Thinker, Talmudist and Hassidic Leader
Humanity's first sin was not Adam and Eve's eating of forbidden fruit, but rather the way they ate it. The Tree of Knowledge … was not a tree or a food or a thing at all. Rather it was a way of eating. Whenever a person grabs self-conscious pleasure from the world, he falls, at that moment, from God consciousness. ... Whenever we eat without proper kavanna (intention) we repeat this original sin. The primary fixing of human civilization is to learn to eat in holiness.
Do not take that which is not destined for them from Hashem… That which is not created for this specific person is like stolen property when they are in possession of it, and thus [the righteous are careful] not to take possession of it. Because of this, property that is assigned to and created for them is very precious to them—so much so that our patriarch Jacob risked his life for his property. Thus …it was said in the name of the Yehudi Hakadosh: a righteous person is obligated to enjoy an object which is fitting for him even if it means risking his life. That is why Jacob– who knew that the small vessels were his, appropriate to his soul, and created for him—risked his life to save them.
What we dream is a reflection of who we are. It is the measure of our aspirations and goals, and of those values we hold dear and place above all else.
As is well known in the name of Zusia of blessed memory that he was once walking along the road and it chanced upon him that a Gentile wagon driver, who was transporting hay, fell over. The man requested help, to which he responded, ‘I cannot.’ The Gentile said to him, “You can, but you just do not want to.” Regarding this Rebbe Zusia said to himself that it must be an allusion to the fallen hey (referring to the fifth letter in the Hebrew alphabet) represented in God’s name. It has fallen and it is in my power to pick it up, I just don’t want to. And so it is with all occurrences that chance upon a person, for all worldly events are really spiritual allusions.
And our Rabbis have revealed to us stories which discuss the bat kol, which is defined as listening to the voices of everyday people who are discussing daily matters and do have other intentions. Rather one listener is able to be informed, through their words, what is required of him… Namely, God articulates the will of his voice through regular people. Even though they have their own intentions when they speak and the directives do not seem to emanate from God with intention and clarity, rather His will relates to us implicitly…For example when God wishes good it is manifest personally in each of his creations according to their conception of good. The Jewish people relate according to their conception of good, gentiles relate each according to their own conception…and so it is with all creations according to their own conception. And therefore it is nearly impossible to define what is the implicit will that God intends to impart since it is manifest through different being, each with their own conceptions and notions of that message.
And the language of writing is relevant in all (three books). For all of them are called books…and also on the book of thought its writing is the physical world which is a remnant of the letters of thought which are faintly recognizable through their (i.e. the wicked) actions. And so I have received that this entire world is a book which God created. And it appears to me that as a child I saw such a formulation in the work Me’or Einayim which cited the formulation in a gentile work of pedagogy. Seemingly, it was found there a slight parallel of this idea that all of the creations of the world are the forms of the letters which God inscribed in his book, the worlds. The Torah is the commentary on that book and adorns the world with truth for within the Torah the letters of thought are explicitly manifest, as opposed to in the World which only presents vestige and a remnant. And through the Torah we are able to understand the hints of the remnants and recognize that within the worldly actions contain the thoughts of God. Nevertheless, one must bear in mind, that all worldly actions and creations of the world are a Book unto themselves on which the letters of God’s thoughts are inscribed through great concealment. There is no creation which is not marked for a specific purpose in the mind of God.
Every day there are innovations in Torah, for God recreated every day his works of the world, and the works of the world (maaseh bereishit) is through the Torah as cited in the beginning of Bereishit Rabbah, and logically the recreation of the world as well is though the Torah. And it is for this reason that after the blessing [of the Shema] ‘Yotzer ha-Meorot,’ which relates to the recognition of the recreation of the world every day, [the Rabbis] established a second blessing which functions as a blessing on the Torah as explained in [TB] Berahot 11b (i.e. ‘Ahava Rabba’). One requests (to God) to know the innovations of the Torah which are through the recreation of the world. And as I have heard, that God created a book, and that is the world (olam), and the commentary (on the book), and that is that Torah. For the Torah is akin to a commentary of God’s possessions.
I dreamt a dream [when I was present in Izbica] in which certain ideas were reveled to me from the roots of my soul. And among the ideas which were told to me is that the generation of Messiah will consist of those souls of the Generation of the Wilderness… whom are in turn comprised of the souls of the Flood… and they (the Generations of the Flood) corrupted their ways and sinned in what is known in rabbinic works as the sin of youth… and the rectification of this is in the Generation of the Wilderness for which is was called ‘the kindness of youth.’ As it is written “I have remembered for you the kindness of my youth.