Parshas Pinchas-Excerpts from Likkutei Torah

 

Explorations of the Excerpts:

1.      What is the lifespan of angels?

2.      What occurs to our G-dly soul during sleep?

3.      How do we regain our G-dly soul after waking up in the morning?

4.      Why may one not eat before Davening unless he is sick or weak?

 

Angels

  1. How long do angels live for?[1]

There exist two types of angels, one called Beni Elokim, and the second called Bnei Eilim. The angels of Bnei Elokim, are angels that were created during the six days of creation, and they do not die or expire. They have been serving G-d since that time without fail. The second type of angel, Bnei Eilim, is angels with a lifespan of a mere few hours. They are created daily, in the morning, for the purpose of singing praise to Hashem, and expire within this process of singing. These two forms of angels are hinted to in the daily prayer of Birchas Shema in which we recite “Veyotzer Mesharsim Veasher Mesharsav”; the term Yotzer Mesharsim refers to the angels that are created daily while the term Veasher Mesharsav refer to the angels that live forever. The temporary angels derive from the level of Desha, which means plantation, as they are similar to plants which grow daily from the earth. These angels of Bnei Eilim are the angels that are found in the world of Assiya.

  1. The angels draw blessing to this world:[2]

The Sages state that there does not exist even one blade of grass that does not have a corresponding angel that tells it to grow. This is because all of the Divine light that reaches the physical world goes through the angels of the world of Assiya.

  1. Elevating the angels:[3]

The angels of Assiya, Bnei Eilim, are elevated by man upon him eating foods and using the received energy for service of G-d. The energy found in the food passes through the angels of Assiya, and hence they are directly connected to the food we eat. Consequently, when one eats food in purity, and then uses the energy to pray to G-d with enthusiasm, it causes also the angel which provided this food with its energy, to be elevated and incorporated within G-dliness. These angels of Bnei Eilim receive their life-force from the level of Hevel, which is a very external G-dly light that does not contain the level of Chochmah within it. The Jewish people however, which come from the internal aspect of Chochmah, have ability to elevate these angels. This is the meaning of the words in Psalms, read by Kabalas Shabbos, “Havu LaHashem Bnei Eilim”; as these words mean that we invite the angels of Bnei Eilim to be incorporated within the name Havayah.  

 

  1. The food of the angels:[4]

The angels receive energy from the Karbanos that are sacrificed on the Altar. Just as physical food adds energy to our bodies, the souls of the animals that are elevated through Karbanos are consumed by the supernal angels and add energy to them.

 

Sleep

  1. Spiritual nighttime:[5]

Just as in the physical world there exists day and night, and the definition of night is a lack of day light, similarly there exists a spiritual nighttime, which is a time when the body lacks the revelation of the G-dly soul. When a person is awake, the G-dly soul shines in his body and when the person goes to sleep, the G-dly soul ascends from the body. This is considered spiritual night. It is for this reason that nighttime is considered a time of complete sleep, as during this time when one sleeps the G-dly soul ascends from the body.

 

  1. The state of the G-dly soul upon awakening in the morning:[6]

When one awakens in the morning his body is found in a state of coarseness and thickness of physical matter, and is not a receptacle to receive the G-dly soul. Nonetheless, Hashem sends the soul back to the body, as we say in the prayer of Modeh Ani “Shechazarta Bi Nishmasi Raba Emunasecha”. During this time the soul remains by one’s mouth and does not penetrate the rest of one’s body. This means that the soul is found only in one’s mind and intellect, but does not have ability to penetrate one’s heart and emotions. It allows one to praise and thank Hashem with cold intellectual understanding, but not with emotion of the heart.

Prayer

  1. Eating before prayer:[7]

In Shulchan Aruch[8] it is ruled that one may not eat before prayer unless he is sick or weak. The reason for this limitation is as follows: When one first awakens the G-dly soul has not yet fully penetrated the body, as explained in the previous excerpt. It is only through Davening that the G-dly soul can then penetrate the heart and enter into one’s emotions. Due to this state of the soul before Davening, if one were to eat before Davening he would actually be giving the energy from the food to the side of evil and to his animal soul. This would then prevent his G-dly soul from being able to penetrate the heart later on through prayer. 

Gan Eden

  1. Man creates his own Gan Eden:[9]

Man is responsible for the structure of his personal Gan Eden. The Garden of Eden, which is the place of reward for souls after their passing, is made up of chambers that contain revelations of G-dliness. The G-dliness presented in each chamber is actually drawn there by the person who is found in that chamber. When a person learns Torah and performs Mitzvos he creates the G-dly revelations in the chamber that he will enter after 120 years. This is the meaning of the verse that states that Hashem placed man in Gan Eden “To work it and guard it”, as each individual is responsible to make his own personal abode of Gan Eden which corresponds to his service of G-d.

Suffering

  1. Suffering in this world-Olam Haba is Gevurah; Olam Hazeh is Chesed:[10]

Olam Haba is built on the attribute of Gevurah and judgment, while this world is built on the attribute of kindness. The suffering that one experiences in this world, such as losing money and stubbing a toe, is considered suffering of kindness and love, as the suffering refines the person. It has no comparison to the suffering experienced in the next world [by one whose sins were not refined by suffering in this world], as it states that the fire of Gihennim is one of 60. When one suffers in this world, it is used to subtract from suffering in the next world, and hence is actually an act of Chesed.   

Sheep

  1. Sheep:[11]

The animal chosen to be used for the daily Tamid Karban is the sheep. Only a sheep may be offered as this Karban and not any other species of animal. Why? The reason for this is because sheep contain a tendency of mercy; a cry of mercy, which corresponds to the voice of Yaakov. Likewise the sheep grows wool which is the material used for majority of our garments. The concept of hairs represents a very sublime spiritual level which is found within the sheep.

Creation

  1. Creation of physicality: [12]

The creation of physicality is not a result of the spiritual life-force found in the spiritual worlds that precede our world. In the spiritual worlds, once the Sefiros were created, all the other creations are derived from that original spiritual force as it descends to various levels of contraction, referred to as Hishtalshlus or Ila Vealul. However the physical creations do not derive from the descent of this spiritual life-force, as spirituality can never create physicality even if it were to go through an infinite amount of contractions and descents. Rather the physical creations derive from Hashem Himself, as just as He created the original spiritual life-force ex-nehilo, similarly he created the physical creations ex-nehilo. Furthermore, the G-dliness used to create the spiritual and physical are also inherently different; while the level of Mimalei Kol Almin was used to create the spiritual beings, the level of Soveiv Kol Almin was used to create the physical beings. Now, although the Sages state that every physical creation has a spiritual root and Mazal which tells it to grow, this is only in regards to the growth of the creation while the actual creation of its physical matter is completely ex-nehilo from Hashem Himself and does not derive at all from the spiritual energy found in the upper worlds. From here we can derive the special enthusiasm one should share when performing a Mitzvah with a physical object, as this contains the actual infinite light of the Ein Sof.

  1. The energy of a Jew:[13]

Superficially, the energy contained in the body of Jew seems similar to that of a gentile. In truth however the energy that a Jew has in his limbs, and the power of his senses contained within the body, is much different than that of a gentile. By a gentile the energy and senses are purely from his animal soul, which is Kelipa; By a Jew the energy is all from the name of Havayah.   

 

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[1] Likkutei Torah Pinchas p. 79b

[2] Likkutei Torah Pinchas p. 79b

[3] Likkutei Torah Pinchas p. 79b

[4] Likkutei Torah Pinchas p. 76b

[5] Likkutei Torah Pinchas p. 79b

[6] Likkutei Torah Pinchas p. 79b

[7] Likkutei Torah Pinchas p. 79b

[8] Admur 89/5

[9] Likkutei Torah Pinchas p. 76b

[10] Likkutei Torah Pinchas p. 76b

[11] Likkutei Torah Pinchas p. 77b

[12] Likkutei Torah Pinchas p. 78a

[13] Likkutei Torah Pinchas p. 80a

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