Daily Tanya 6th Adar 1: Middle of Chapter 27-The effect of Iskafya in even permitted matters

(LY) 6th Adar 1

3.      The effect of Iskafya in even permitted matters:

  • The Divine service of subjugating evil known as Iskafya is not just limited to withholding oneself from performing matters that are forbidden according to Jewish law but applies even towards withholding oneself from completely permissible matters.
  • Whenever a person decides to slaughter his inclination for even a mere moment with intention to subjugate the side of evil that is found in the left ventricle of his heart, this causes the above ripple effect in heaven achieved through Iskafya.
  • Delaying one’s meal for Iskafya purposes: For example, when one desires to eat a meal and he delays his meal for an hour or less and instead he studies Torah during that time, he has performed Iskafya through doing so, as the Talmud states that the fourth hour of the day is the time for meals for all people, while the sixth hour of the day is the time of meals for Torah scholars. Hence, we see that the Torah scholars would starve themselves for an extra two hours for the sake of the above intent of performing Iskafya. Hence, although they would study Torah throughout the entire day, even after they finished their meal, they would still delay their meal for the above intent.
  • Abstaining from unnecessary speech or thoughts for Iskafya purposes: Another example of performing Iskafya with the permitted is one who holds back his tongue from speaking unnecessary words that his heart very much desires to speak regarding matters of the world. The same applies regarding one who controls his thoughts regarding such matters.
  • Even a little Iskafya causes G-d’s glory to shine: While these matters may seem trivial, in truth, even a slight amount of subjugation of the side of evil here below causes the glory of G-d to shine above to a disproportionate extent.

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