But what of one who finds it impossible to arouse even a feeling of intellectual awe of G-d? The Alter Rebbe will now go on to say that since this individual, too, meditates upon the abovementioned concepts, and, furthermore, his intent during the study of Torah and the performance of mitzvot is to serve G-d, these activities are therefore also deemed to constitute a completely valid form of service.

Furthermore, even in the case of an individual, who even in his mind and thought feels no fear or shame,

וְהִנֵּה, אַף מִי שֶׁגַּם בְּמוֹחוֹ וּבְמַחֲשַׁבְתּוֹ אֵינוֹ מַרְגִּישׁ שׁוּם יִרְאָה וּבוּשָׁה,

I.e., an individual who is not moved by his contemplation of G-d uniquely bestowing His Kingdom upon him and furthermore is not moved by the consideration that G-d is scrutinizing him to see if he is serving Him as is fitting,

on account of the limited grade of his soul, originating in the lower degrees of the ten sefirot of Asiyah,

מִפְּנֵי פְּחִיתוּת עֵרֶךְ נַפְשׁוֹ מִמְּקוֹר חוּצְבָּהּ, מִמַּדְרֵגוֹת תַּחְתּוֹנוֹת דְּי' סְפִירוֹת דַּעֲשִׂיָּה,

The soul of this individual derives from Asiyah, the lowest of the Four Worlds. Moreover, within this World itself, it originates from the lowest degrees of the ten sefirot that span it. Since his soul stems from such a lowly level, he finds it impossible to reveal within himself a sensitivity to G-dliness to experience even an intellectual fear of G-d.

nevertheless, since he is intent in his service to serve the King, this is unequivocally a complete service.

אַף־עַל־פִּי־כֵן, מֵאַחַר שֶׁמִּתְכַּוֵּין בַּעֲבוֹדָתוֹ כְּדֵי לַעֲבוֹד אֶת הַמֶּלֶךְ, הֲרֵי זוֹ עֲבוֹדָה גְמוּרָה,

For fear and service are accounted as two commandments of the total of 613, and they do not exclude each other.

כִּי הַיִּרְאָה וְהָעֲבוֹדָה נֶחְשָׁבוֹת לִשְׁתֵּי מִצְוֹת בְּמִנְיַן תַּרְיַ"ג, וְאֵינָן מְעַכְּבוֹת זוֹ אֶת זוֹ.

Thus, although this individual fails to fulfill the command of fearing G-d, for fear must be felt in one’s heart and at the very least in one’s mind, he is nevertheless able to fulfill the precept of divine service by studying Torah and performing the commandments with the intention that he is thereby serving G-d, his King.

After all this has been said, the Alter Rebbe will now say that although this person fails to experience the fear even in his mind, since he thinks about those ideas which should evoke fear, he is fulfilling the command of fearing G-d.

Furthermore, as a matter of fact, he not only fulfills the obligation of service, he also fulfills the commandment of fearing [G-d] by introducing the fear into his thought, by thinking about it and seeking to arouse it,

וְעוֹד, שֶׁבֶּאֱמֶת מְקַיֵּים גַּם מִצְוַת יִרְאָה בְּמַה שֶּׁמַּמְשִׁיךְ הַיִּרְאָה בְּמַחֲשַׁבְתּוֹ,

for at this hour and moment, at any rate, there rests upon him the fear of heaven, at least like one’s fear in the presence of an ordinary mortal, even not a king, who is watching him,

כִּי בְּשָׁעָה וְרֶגַע זוֹ עַל כָּל פָּנִים, מוֹרָא שָׁמַיִם עָלָיו עַל כָּל פָּנִים, כְּמוֹרָא בָּשָׂר וָדָם הֶדְיוֹט לְפָחוֹת, שֶׁאֵינוֹ מֶלֶךְ, הַמַּבִּיט עָלָיו,

when he would refrain from doing anything unseemly in the other’s eyes.

שֶׁנִּמְנָע בַּעֲבוּרוֹ מִלַּעֲשׂוֹת דָּבָר שֶׁאֵינוֹ הָגוּן בְּעֵינָיו,

This—even this simple expression of fear—is termed fear, as Rabban Yochanan ben Zakkai said to his disciples: “May it be G-d’s will that the fear of heaven be upon you like the fear of a human being.”12

שֶׁזּוֹ נִקְרֵאת יִרְאָה, כְּמוֹ שֶׁאָמַר רַבָּן יוֹחָנָן בֶּן זַכַּאי לְתַלְמִידָיו: "יְהִי רָצוֹן שֶׁיְּהֵא מוֹרָא שָׁמַיִם עֲלֵיכֶם כְּמוֹרָא בָּשָׂר וָדָם כוּ',

Whereupon his disciples protested: “No more than this?!”

He responded that the proof that this is indeed a true form of fear is as follows: “…For you know that when a person commits a sin, he says [to himself]: ‘May no one see me!.’”

תֵּדְעוּ כְּשֶׁאָדָם עוֹבֵר עֲבֵירָה אוֹמֵר שֶׁלֹּא יִרְאַנִי אָדָם כוּ'".

Such fear, held Rabbi Yochanan, would ensure that they refrain from sinning.

At any rate, we note that this manner of fear is duly designated as “fear of heaven,” because it distances a person from sin. Accordingly, attaining this level of fear through meditation amounts to a proper fulfillment of the command to fear G-d.

Such fear, however, is termed yirah tataah (“lower-level fear”) and yirat chet (“fear of sin”), which precedes wisdom,13 i.e., it is only a lower level of fear, a fear of transgressing, rather than a fear of G-d Himself,

רַק שֶׁיִּרְאָה זוֹ נִקְרֵאת "יִרְאָה תַּתָּאָה" וְ"יִרְאַת חֵטְא" שֶׁקּוֹדֶמֶת לְחָכְמָתוֹ,

while the higher fear is a “shamefaced fear,” i.e., the state of being abashed and overawed in G-d’s presence.

וְ"יִרְאָה עִילָּאָה" הוּא "יְרֵא בֹּשֶׁת" כוּ',

For there are two kinds of fear…—the lower level of fear, which leads to the performance of Torah and mitzvot, and the higher level of fear, which results from the proper performance of Torah and mitzvot.14

דְּ"אִית יִרְאָה וְאִית יִרְאָה כוּ'",

Without any fear at all, however, it i.e., one’s fulfillment of Torah and mitzvot does not soar on high to the supernal sefirot through love alone, just as a bird cannot fly with one wing,15

אֲבָל בְּלִי יִרְאָה כְּלָל, לָא פָרְחָא לְעֵילָּא בְּאַהֲבָה לְבַדָּהּ, כְּמוֹ שֶׁהָעוֹף אֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לִפְרוֹחַ בְּכָנָף אֶחָד,

for fear and love are the two wings (16as stated in Tikkunei Zohar).

דִּדְחִילוּ וּרְחִימוּ הֵן תְּרֵין גַּדְפִין [כְּמוֹ שֶׁכָּתוּב בַּתִּיקּוּנִים].

The spiritual wings of love and fear of G-d elevate the Torah and mitzvot performed under their impetus to the supernal sefirot, as explained in the previous chapters. When one lacks a fear of G-d and acts only out of love, he is operating with only one “wing,” thus making it impossible for his Torah and mitzvot to soar on high.

Similarly, fear alone is but one wing, and [one’s service] cannot ascend with it on high, even though it is termed the “service of a servant,” duly motivated by awe or fear,

וְכֵן הַיִּרְאָה לְבַדָּהּ – הִיא כָּנָף אֶחָד, וְלָא פָרְחָא בָּהּ לְעֵילָּא, אַף שֶׁנִּקְרֵאת "עֲבוֹדַת עֶבֶד".

for there must also be [the service characteristic of] a “son,” i.e., service motivated by love,

וְצָרִיךְ לִהְיוֹת גַּם כֵּן בְּחִינַת "בֵּן",

in order to awaken at least the natural love for G-d that is hidden in one’s heart so that he should at least become conscious of it in his mind,

לְעוֹרֵר הָאַהֲבָה הַטִּבְעִית עַל כָּל פָּנִים, הַמְסוּתֶּרֶת בְּלִבּוֹ, שֶׁתְּהֵא בְּהִתְגַּלּוּת מוֹחוֹ עַל כָּל פָּנִים,

to recall his love of the One G-d in his thought and in his desire to cleave to Him. This recollection of his hidden love for G-d should arouse within him a desire to cleave to Him.

לִזְכּוֹר אַהֲבָתוֹ לַה' אֶחָד בְּמַחֲשַׁבְתּוֹ וּבִרְצוֹנוֹ, לְדָבְקָה בּוֹ יִתְבָּרֵךְ.

This should be his intent when occupying himself with the Torah or with the particular commandment he is about to perform, viz.,

וְזֹאת תִּהְיֶה כַּוָּונָתוֹ בְּעֵסֶק הַתּוֹרָה אוֹ הַמִּצְוָה הַזּוֹ,

that his divine soul as well as his vivifying soul, together with their “garments,” shall cleave to Him, as has been explained above.

לְדָבְקָה בוֹ נַפְשׁוֹ הָאֱלֹהִית וְהַחִיּוּנִית וּלְבוּשֵׁיהֶן, כַּנִּזְכָּר לְעֵיל.

In summary: a Jew’s divine service must embrace both that of a son who serves his father out of love and that of a servant who serves his master out of fear and awe.