— 1 —

"לְכָה דּוֹדִי לִקְרַאת כַּלָּה, פְּנֵי שַׁבָּת נְקַבְּלָה".

“Come, my beloved to meet the bride; let us welcome the Shabbos.”

וְהִנֵּה הַשַּׁבָּת נִקְרֵאת "כַּלָּה"

Thus, the Shabbos is called a bride,

וְנִקְרֵאת "מַלְכָּה",

and it is also called a queen,

וּכְמַאֲמַר "שַׁבָּת מַלְכְּתָא".

as in the expression,1 “the Shabbos queen.”

דְּהִנֵּה חָתָן וְכַלָּה

The above analogies are reflected on this material plane in a wedding between a groom and a bride.

הֲרֵי הֶחָתָן נִקְרָא מֶלֶךְ,

The groom is called a king,

כִּדְאִיתָא בְּפִרְקֵי דְּרַבִּי אֱלִיעֶזֶר פֶּרֶק ט"ו "חָתָן דּוֹמֶה לְמֶלֶךְ",

as mentioned in Pirkei deRabbi Eliezer, (at the end of ch. 16) “a groom resembles a king,”

וְהַכַּלָּה נִקְרֵאת "מַלְכָּה",

and the bride is called a queen.2

To focus on the parallel to these concepts in the spiritual realms:

דְּהִנֵּה כְּתִיב "נַעֲשֶׂה אָדָם בְּצַלְמֵנוּ כִּדְמוּתֵנוּ",

The Torah states,3 “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness,”

דְּהָאָדָם שֶׁלְּמַטָּה הוּא בְּצֶלֶם וּדְמוּת אָדָם הָעֶלְיוֹן,

i.e., man on this earthly plane reflects the form and image of the Higher Man,

שֶׁהֵם הַסְּפִירוֹת הָעֶלְיוֹנוֹת,

i.e., the heavenly Sefiros.

דִּזְעֵיר־אַנְפִּין דַּאֲצִילוּת

For Z’eir Anpin, literally, “the small face,” the kabbalistic term for the six emotive attributes of Atzilus,

נִקְרָא מַלְכָּא,

is called “the King”

וְכַמְבֹאָר בְּעִנְיָן דְּכָל נִשְׁמְתָא וְנִשְׁמְתָא הֲוָה קָיְמָא בִּדְיוֹקְנָאָה קַמֵּי מַלְכָּא קַדִּישָׁא

as explained concerning the statement:4 “The image of each and every soul stood before the holy King.”

שֶׁהוּא זְעֵיר־אַנְפִּין דַּאֲצִילוּת,

The term “holy King” refers to Z’eir Anpin of Atzilus.

וּסְפִירַת הַמַּלְכוּת נִקְרֵאת מַלְכְּתָא,

The Sefirah of Malchus,“sovereignty,” is called the queen.

וְאִיתָא בַּזֹּהַר דְּמַלְכָּא בְּלֹא מַטְרוֹנִיתָא לָאו אִיהוּ מֶלֶךְ וְלָאו אִיהוּ גָּדוֹל,

The Zohar states:5 “A king without a queen is neither a king, nor is he great.”

דְּהָעִקָּר הוּא יִחוּד זְעֵיר־אַנְפִּין וְנוּקְבָא,

The essential factor is the union of Z’eir Anpin and Nukvah, ”the feminine dimension,” the Kabbalistic term for Malchus.

וּכְתִיב "זָכָר וּנְקֵבָה בָּרָא אֹתָם, וַיְבָרֶךְ אֹתָם אֱלֹקִים" כוּ,'

This is emphasized by the Torah’s statement:6 “Male and female He created them. And G‑d blessed them…” The blessing was granted them as a unified entity, not to each individually.

וְלָזֹאת

Accordingly,

i.e., because the unity between a bride and a groom is the source of blessing,

הִנֵּה כְּדֻגְמַת הַשַּׁבָּת שֶׁצְּרִיכִים לְקַבְּלוֹ בְּשִׂמְחָה,

just as the Shabbos – which is identified with the feminine dimension – must be received with joy,

דְּשַׁבָּת אִיהִי מְקוֹרָא דְּכָל בִּרְכָּאִין עִילָאִין וְתַתָּאִין,

for it is the source of all blessings, both heavenly and earthly,

דְּכֻלְּהוּ יוֹמִין מִתְבָּרְכִין מֵהַשַּׁבָּת,

as the Zohar states,7 “all the days of the week are blessed from the Shabbos,”

הִנֵּה כְּמוֹ כֵן צְרִיכִים לְקַבֵּל פְּנֵי כַּלָּה

so too, a bride must also be received with joy

דְּאִיהִי מְקוֹרָא בִּרְכְתָא עִלָּאָה.

for she is the source of all the sublime blessings.

וְהִנֵּה יְסוֹד מַאֲמָר זֶה דִּ"לְכָה דּוֹדִי לִקְרַאת כַּלָּה פְּנֵי שַׁבָּת נְקַבְּלָה" שֶׁאוֹמְרִים בְּקַבָּלַת הַשַּׁבָּת,

The source for the quote, “Come, my beloved to meet the bride; let us welcome the Shabbos” that features in the Kabbalas Shabbos prayers

הוּא דְּאִיתָא בִּגְמָרָא (שַׁבָּת קיט עַמּוּד א)

is the Talmud’s description (Shabbos 19a.) of how the Sages would prepare to greet the Shabbos]:

"ר' חֲנִינָא מִיעַטַּף (בִּבְגָדִים נָאִים, רַשִׁ"י) וְקָאִי אַפַּנְיָא דְּמַעֲלֵי שַׁבְּתָא,

“R. Chaninah robed himself (in fine clothing, Rashi) stood at sunset on Shabbos eve, and

אָמַר בּוֹאוּ וְנֵצֵא לִקְרַאת שַׁבָּת הַמַּלְכָּה.

exclaimed, ‘Come and let us go forth to welcome the Shabbos queen.’

ר' יַנַּאי לְבִישָׁא מָאנֵיהּ (בִּגְדֵי שַׁבָּת [שֶׁלוֹ]) מַעֲלֵי שַׁבָּתי

R. Yannai donned his robes (Shabbos clothing)8 on Shabbos eve and

וְאָמַר בּוֹאִי כַּלָּה בּוֹאִי כַּלָּה"

exclaimed, ‘Come, O bride, Come, O bride.’”

(הָכִי קָרֵי לָהּ לִשְׁבִיתַת שַׁבָּת מִתּוֹךְ חֲבִיבוּת, רַשִׁ"י.)

(Because of his great love for the Shabbos, he would refer to it as his bride, Rashi.)

וּבַזֹּהַר חֵלֶק ג דַּף ער"ב עַמּוּד ב אִיתָא,

The Zohar, Vol. III, p. 272b, also emphasizes the relationship between a bride and Shabbos, stating:

"וּבְשַׁבָּת בְּכָל מִלּוֹי צָרִיךְ לְאִתּוֹסְפָא מֵחֹל עַל הַקֹּדֶשׁ,

“On Shabbos, one must add on from the mundane to the holy in all matters:

בֵּין בְּמַאֲכָלָיו וּבְמִשְׁתָּיו, בֵּין בִּלְבוּשֵׁיהּ, בֵּין בַּהֲסֵבָתֵיהּ,

in one’s eating, drinking, clothing, and reclining.

דְּצָרִיךְ לְתַקָּנָה לֵיהּ מְסִבָּה שַׁפִּירָא בְּכַמָּה כָּרִים וּכְסָתוֹת מְרַקְמָן מִכָּל דְּאִית בְּבֵיתֵיהּ

One must prepare a pleasant couch with embroidered covers and pillows from the finest of all that is found in his house,

כְּמָאן דְּתַקִּין חֻפָּה לַכַּלָּה,

just as one would prepare a marriage chamber for a bride.

דְּשַׁבַּתָּא אִיהִי מַלְכְּתָא וְאִיהִי כַּלָּה".

For behold, Shabbos is a queen and a bride.”

וְהַיְנוּ דִּכְשֵׁם שֶׁהַשַּׁבָּת הִיא מְקוֹר הַבְּרָכוֹת,

Just as Shabbos is the source of all blessings,

הִנֵּה כְּמוֹ כֵן שִׂמְחַת חָתָן וְכַלָּה וְקַבָּלַת פְּנֵיהֶם

so too, rejoicing with the groom and bride and greeting them

הִיא מְקוֹר הַבְּרָכוֹת,

is the source of all blessings.

דְּהִנֵּה כְּתִיב "כִּי עַל כָּל כָּבוֹד חֻפָּה",

The above can be explained in terms of the verse:9 “For upon all the glory shall there be a canopy.”

שֶׁהֵם שְׁתֵּי בְּחִינוֹת,

The word “all” implies two aspects of honor:

כְּבוֹד חָתָן וּכְבוֹד כַּלָּה,

the honor of the groom and the honor of the bride.

דְּחָתָן הוּא הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא,

G‑d is often referred to as a groom,

וּכְמַאֲמַר "בְּיוֹם חֲתֻנָּתוֹ זוֹ מַתַּן תּוֹרָה",

as reflected in our Sages’ interpretation10 of the verse,11 “On the day of His wedding,” “the day of the Giving of the Torah.”

שֶׁהַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא נִקְרָא "חָתָן"

G‑d is referred to as the groom

וּכְנֶסֶת יִשְׂרָאֵל נִקְרֵאת "כַּלָּה",

and the Jewish people are called His bride:

וְכָבוֹד הוּא בְּחִינַת מַקִּיף,

Honor refers to an encompassing light, a revelation of Divine light that is above our conscious powers.

כְּבוֹד חָתָן – אַהֲבַת הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא לִכְנֶסֶת יִשְׂרָאֵל,

The honor of the groom refers to G‑d’s great and all-encompassing love for the Jewish people,

כְּמוֹ שֶׁכָּתוּב "אָהַבְתִּי אֶתְכֶם אָמַר הֲוָיָ'",

as it is written:12 “‘I have loved you,’ said G‑d.”

וּכְבוֹד כַּלָּה – אַהֲבַת כְּנֶסֶת יִשְׂרָאֵל לְהַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא,

The honor of the bride refers to the great and all-encompassing love of the Jewish people for G‑d,

וּכְמוֹ שֶׁכָּתוּב "נִכְסְפָה וְגַם כָּלְתָה נַפְשִׁי",

as it is written:13 “My soul longs, indeed it pines, for the courtyards of G‑d.”

Indeed, כלה, the root of the word, kallah, “bride,” has the meaning of longing. Thus, we find the expression kallus hanefesh, the soul expires in love for G‑d.

וְהַחֻפָּה הוּא הַמַּקִּיף הַכְּלָלִי עַל חָתָן וְכַלָּה,

The marriage canopy represents a more general encompassment over both the groom and bride.

וְכֵן הוּא לְמַטָּה,

These spiritual qualities are mirrored in the marriage ceremony on the physical plane.

דְּהַסֵּדֶר הוּא שֶׁבָּאִים רֹב עַם לְקַבֵּל פְּנֵי הֶחָתָן,

The order of a wedding is that first, many people come to greet the groom.

וְאַחַר כָּךְ הוֹלְכִים עִם הֶחָתָן לְקַבֵּל פְּנֵי הַכַּלָּה,

Afterwards, they proceed together with the groom, to greet the bride.

וְהֶחָתָן מְכַסֶּה בְּצָעִיף אֶת הַכַּלָּה

Then, the groom covers the bride with a veil

וְהוֹלְכִים אֶל הַחֻפָּה,

and they go to the marriage canopy.

וְהָעִנְיָן הוּא

To explain the concept:

דִּבְכָל עֲלִיַּת הַמְקַבֵּל אֶל הַמַּשְׁפִּיעַ

Whenever a mekabel (recipient) ascends and approaches the level of the mashpia (source of influence),

The terms mashpia and mekabel are used in the description of many types of relationships. The root of the word mashpia is the word shefa, meaning flow or emanation. A mashpia is the source of flow, a bestower of energy, a giver of love, knowledge, blessing, and the like. The mekabel receives and accepts what the mashpia grants.

צָרִיךְ לִהְיוֹת תְּחִלָּה הַמְשָׁכַת הַמַּשְׁפִּיעַ בִּבְחִינַת חִיצוֹנִיּוּת שֶׁבּוֹ

it is first necessary for the mashpia to establish a connection, by drawing down his external qualities

לִבְחִינַת חִיצוֹנִיּוּת הַמְקַבֵּל,

to the external qualities of the mekabel

כְּדֵי שֶׁעַל יְדֵי הַמְשָׁכָה זוֹ יוּכַל הַמְקַבֵּל לִשָּׂא אֶת עַצְמוֹ וּלְהִתְעַלּוֹת לִהְיוֹת קָרוֹב לְמַדְרֵגַת הַמַּשְׁפִּיעַ,

so that through this transmission of influence, the mekabel can elevate himself and approach the level of the mashpia,

וְאָז יְקַבֵּל הַמְשָׁכָה הַפְּנִימִית מֵהַמַּשְׁפִּיעַ.

enabling him to then receive the inner qualities of the mashpia.



Summary קִצּוּר.

יְבָאֵר כִּי חָתָן וְכַלָּה הֵם בְּדֻגְמַת הַסְּפִירוֹת הָעֶלְיוֹנוֹת זְעֵיר־אַנְפִּין וּמַלְכוּת,

This section explains that a groom and a bride can be compared to the heavenly Sefiros, Z’eir Anpin and Malchus.

וְקַבָּלַת פְּנֵי הַכַּלָּה הוּא כְּדֻגְמַת קַבָּלַת פְּנֵי הַשַּׁבָּת

Greeting the bride is comparable to receiving the Shabbos,

שֶׁהִיא הַבְּרָכָה לְכָל יְמֵי הַשָּׁבוּעַ,

which contains the blessings for all the days of the week.

כְּבוֹד חָתָן – אַהֲבַת הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא לִכְנֶסֶת יִשְׂרָאֵל,

The honor of the groom refers to G‑d’s love of the Jewish people.

וּכְבוֹד כַּלָּה – אַהֲבַת כְּנֶסֶת יִשְׂרָאֵל לְהַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא,

The honor of the bride refers to the Jewish people’s love of G‑d.

וְהַחֻפָּה הוּא הַמְשָׁכַת הָעַצְמוּת

The marriage canopy represents drawing down the Essence of G‑d.

וְקֹדֶם הַחֻפָּה הֶחָתָן מְכַסֶּה אֶת הַכַּלָּה בְּצָעִיף

Before the actual wedding ceremony under the marriage canopy, the groom covers the face of the bride with a veil,

שֶׁהוּא קֵרוּב חִיצוֹנִיּוּת הַמַּשְׁפִּיעַ אֶל חִיצוֹנִיּוּת הַמְקַבֵּל

thus establishing an external bond between the mashpia and the mekabel.

בִּשְׁבִיל הַשְׁפָּעָה וְקַבָּלָה פְּנִימִיּוּת.

However, this external bond is intended to enable inner influence to be conveyed by the groom and received by the bride.




— 2 —

וּבֵאוּר הָעִנְיָן הוּא,

To explain the above concepts:

דְּהִנֵּה אָמְרוּ רַבּוֹתֵינוּ זַ"ל (פְּסָחִים דַּף קי"ז עַמּוּד א) "רַבָּה מִקָּמֵי דְּפָתַח לְהוּ לְרַבָּנָן אָמַר מִלְּתָא דִּבְדִיחוּתָא

Our Sages relate that (Pesachim 117a): “Before beginning his lesson to the scholars, Rabbah would make a humorous remark

וּבָדְחוּ רַבָּנָן,

and his students would laugh.

וּלְבַסּוֹף יָתִיב בְּאֵימְתָא וּפָתַח בִּשְׁמַעְתָּא",

Afterwards, he sat in awe and commenced the lecture.”

דְּהַמַּשְׁפִּיעַ צָרִיךְ לִפְתֹּחַ לְהוּ לְרַבָּנָן,

Rabbah’s example demonstrates how a mashpia should first arouse the attention of his students,

וְהַיְנוּ לַעֲשׂוֹת אֶת הַמְקַבֵּל רָאוּי לְקַבֵּל דְּבַר הַהַשְׁפָּעָה

making them, the recipients of his wisdom, fit to accept the influence he conveys.

עַל יְדֵי פְּתִיחַת הַכֵּלִים וְהַחוּשִׁים שֶׁלּוֹ,

He accomplishes this by stimulating the students’ senses and faculties.

וְצָרִיךְ לִפְתֹּחַ בִּשְׁמַעְתְּתָא שֶׁיִּהְיֶה דְּבַר הַהַשְׁפָּעָה לְפִי עֶרֶךְ הַמְקַבֵּל,

Intially, he must begin his lesson on a level to which his students, the mekablim, can relate.

וְלָזֹאת הִנֵּה מִקָּמֵי דְּפָתַח לְהוּ לְרַבָּנָן

Therefore, in order to elevate the level of his listeners, before beginning his lesson to the scholars

לַעֲשׂוֹתָם לִכְלֵי קַבָּלָה

in order to make them mediums, capable of receiving the teachings he would convey,

אָמַר מִלְּתָא דִּבְדִיחוּתָא,

Rabbah began his lesson with a humorous statement.

Rabbah’s witticism should not be regarded in an undignified sense.

וּמִלְּתָא דִּבְדִיחוּתָא הוּא שִׂיחַת חֻלִּין,

The concept of humor here refers to the casual conversation of scholars.

וְעִם הֱיוֹת דְּשִׂיחוֹת חֻלִּין שֶׁל תַּלְמִידֵי חֲכָמִים צְרִיכִים לִמּוּד,

True, as our Sages comment,14 “Even the casual conversation of scholars demands study,”

לְפִי שֶׁיֵּשׁ בָּהֶם חָכְמָה רַבָּה וּשְׂכָלִים עֲמֻקִּים,

because it contains great wisdom and deep insights;

וּמִכָּל מָקוֹם הוּא בְּחִינַת חִיצוֹנִיּוּת,

it nevertheless represents only the external aspects of the scholar’s potential.

וַהֲגַם דְּמִי שֶׁהוּא גָּדוֹל יוֹתֵר הֲרֵי גַּם הַשִּׂיחוֹת חֻלִּין שֶׁלּוֹ הֵם בְּמַדְרֵגָה גָּבוֹהַּ יוֹתֵר

Certainly, the level of the casual conversation of a sage is commensurate to his intellectual capacity and the casual conversation of a great sage is of an extremely elevated nature,

שֶׁיֵּשׁ לִלְמֹד מֵהֶם הַרְבֵּה עִנְיָנִים נִפְלָאִים,

and truly profound concepts can be derived from it.

וְעִם כִּי זֶהוּ רַק נוֹבְלוֹת בִּלְבַד,

Although the sages’ “casual conversation” is merely “withered leaves” in comparison with their true potential;

וּמִכָּל מָקוֹם הֵן הֵן גּוּפֵי חָכְמָה,

nevertheless, they too are essentials of wisdom,

וּכְמַאֲמַר רַבּוֹתֵינוּ זַ"ל (כְּתֻבּוֹת קג עַמּוּד א) "לְשׁוֹן חֲכָמִים בְּרָכָה, לְשׁוֹן חֲכָמִים עֹשֶׁר, לְשׁוֹן חֲכָמִים מַרְפֵּא",

as our Sages relate (Kesubos 10a): “The statements of the sages are blessings, the statements of the sages are wealth, the statements of the sages heal.”

וְהוּא שִׁמּוּשָׁהּ שֶׁל תּוֹרָה,

The realm of “casual conversation” relates to the efforts described as “the service of Torah.”

A sage’s casual conversation can give expression to his inner self. Thus, Chassidus15 (interprets the phrase in the Haggadah: “The wise [son]: What does he say” as “The wise [son] – What he is, he says.” The way he talks expresses who he really is. Similarly, through being with him in the midst of his everyday functioning and observing the way he conducts himself, one is able to appreciate a sage’s inner character, which is not necessarily expressed in the intellectual concepts he teaches.

וְאָמְרוּ רַבּוֹתֵינוּ זַ"ל (בְּרָכוֹת דַּף ז עַמּוּד ב) "גְּדוֹלָה שִׁמּוּשָׁהּ שֶׁל תּוֹרָה יוֹתֵר מִלִּמּוּדָהּ,

Thus, our Sages comment (Berachos 7b), “Serving a Torah scholar surpasses studying under him.”

שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר פֹּה אֱלִישָׁע בֶּן שָׁפָט אֲשֶׁר יָצַק מַיִם עַל יְדֵי אֵלִיָּהוּ,

As a proof, they refer the Biblical reference16 to the prophet Elisha ben Shafat who is praised for having “poured water on Eliyahu’s hands.”

לָמַד לֹא נֶאֱמַר אֶלָּא יָצַק,

The Talmud notes that no mention is made of Elisha having studied Torah under Eliyahu, only that he “poured water over his hands.” Hence, it comments:

מְלַמֵּד שֶׁגְּדוֹלָה שִׁמּוּשָׁהּ יוֹתֵר מִלִּמּוּדָהּ",

“This teaches that serving a Torah scholar surpasses studying under him.”

וְהִנֵּה לְבַסּוֹף יָתִיב בְּאֵימְתָא וּפָתַח בִּשְׁמַעְתְּתָא,

As mentioned above, after the humorous introduction, Rabbah would sit in awe and commence his lesson;

דְּלִמּוּד הַתּוֹרָה צָרִיךְ לִהְיוֹת בְּיִרְאַת שָׁמַיִם,

for the study of Torah must be charged with the fear of Heaven.

Since a teacher is on a fundamentally higher level than his student, for the student to truly grasp the wisdom his teacher will convey to him, he must transcend his own personality and sit before his teacher with true bittul, rising above his self-concern.

וּכְמַאֲמַר "מַה לְּהַלָּן בְּאֵימָה בְּיִרְאָה בְּרֶתֶת וּבְזִיעָה,

As our Sages state:17 “Just as the Jews received the Torah on Mt. Sinai with awe and fear, trembling and quaking,

אַף כָּאן" כוּ',

so too, must Torah study in subsequent times evoke similar feelings.

וְהַיְנוּ דִּכְשֵׁם שֶׁבְּמַתַּן תּוֹרָה כְּתִיב "וַיַּרְא הָעָם וַיָּנֻעוּ וַיַּעַמְדוּ מֵרָחֹק",

With regard to the Giving of the Torah, it is written:18 “And the people saw and they trembled and stood off from afar.”

הִנֵּה כְּמוֹ כֵן בְּעֵת לִמּוּד הַתּוֹרָה צָרִיךְ לִהְיוֹת בְּבִטּוּל גָּדוֹל וּבְיִרְאָה גְּדוֹלָה,

Similarly, whenever one studies the Torah, he must reach great bittul and fear.

אֲבָל קֹדֶם צָרִיךְ הָרַב לִפְתֹּחַ חוּשֵׁי הַמְקַבֵּל,

These feelings represent the proper approach to Torah study. However, to reach this level of feeling, it is necessary for the teacher to first stimulate the students’ faculties,

וְהוּא עַל יְדֵי מִלְּתָא דִּבְדִיחוּתָא.

This is achieved by making a humorous remark.

וְיָדוּע דִּכְלָלוּת עִנְיַן הַבְּדִיחוּתָא שֶׁלִּפְנֵי הַלִּמּוּד

As known, the general purpose of a humorous remark that precedes study

הוּא לְהַעֲלוֹת וּלְהַגְבִּיהַּ אֶת הַתַּלְמִידִים

is to elevate and raise the students

שֶׁיִּהְיוּ בְּעֶרֶךְ לְקַבֵּל אֶת הַהַשְׁפָּעָה שֶׁיַּשְׁפִּיעַ לָהֶם הַמַּשְׁפִּיעַ,

to a level at which they will be capable of receiving the influence conveyed to them by the mashpia.

דְּרַב וְתַלְמִיד אֵינָם בְּעֶרֶךְ זֶה לָזֶה,

By nature, a teacher and a student are not on comparable levels.

וְהַתַּלְמִיד צָרִיךְ לִהְיוֹת בְּבִטּוּל לִפְנֵי רַבּוֹ,

For that reason, a student must be in a state of bittul before his teacher,

וּכְמַאֲמַר "כָּל תַּלְמִיד חָכָם הַיּוֹשֵׁב לִפְנֵי רַבּוֹ וְאֵין שִׂפְתוֹתָיו נוֹטְפוֹת מוֹר" כוּ'

as our Sages state,19 “if a scholar sits before his teacher and his lips do not drip anxiety…”

(שֶׁדָּרְשׁוּ חֲכָמִים "אַל תִּקְרִי מוֹר אֶלָּא מָר",

(our Sages arrive at this concept by interpreting the term מור, “myrrh,”20 as מר, “bitterness,”

שֶׁצָּרִיךְ לְהַרְגִּישׁ מְרִירוּת,)

i.e., the student must feel bitterness),

שֶׁהוּא בְּתַכְלִית הַבִּטּוּל,

attaining complete bittul.

וְלָזֹאת הִנֵּה הַבְּדִיחוּתָא הוּא נוֹתֵן כֹּחַ בְּהַתַּלְמִיד שֶׁיּוּכַל לְקַבֵּל דִּבְרֵי רַבּוֹ,

The humorous remark thus empowers the student to be able to accept his teacher’s lesson.

וּבְדֶרֶךְ כְּלָל הוּא פּוֹעֵל פְּתִיחַת הַלֵּב וְהַמֹּחַ שֶׁל הַתַּלְמִיד

In general, it opens up his heart and mind,

שֶׁיִּהְיֶה כְּלִי לְקַבָּלָה,

thereby making him a “vessel,” a recipient.

וַהֲגַם דְּזֶהוּ עִנְיָן חִיצוֹנִי,

Even though the approach of humor reflects an external dimension,

הִנֵּה חִיצוֹנִיּוּת זוֹ זֶהוּ הַקְדָּמָה אֶל הַפְּנִימִיּוּת,

it nevertheless prepares the student for the communication of the deeper, inner message the teacher will later share.

דְּעַל יְדֵי קֵרוּב זֶה שֶׁל הָרַב לוֹמַר לָהֶם מִלְּתָא דִּבְדִיחוּתָא,

Only through the closeness brought about by the teacher’s humor,

דְּעַל יְדֵי זֶה דַּוְקָא יוּכְלוּ לְקַבֵּל הַהַשְׁפָּעָה פְּנִימִית דְּפָתַח בִּשְׁמַעְתְּתָא.

can the students later receive the deeper inner insights communicated in the lesson.

וְעַל דֶּרֶךְ מָשָׁל,

A different example21 expresses the same concept:

בֵּן יָנֵיק וְקָטָן,

A father has a young, small child.

כְּשֶׁאָבִיו רוֹצֶה לְהִשְׁתַּעֲשֵׁעַ עִמּוֹ פָּנִים אֶל פָּנִים,

When his father desires to delight with him face to face,

וַהֲרֵי הַתִּינוֹק הוּא קָטָן,

since the child is much smaller than he,

צָרִיךְ הָאָב לְהַשְׁפִּיל אֶת יָדָיו

the father must first lower his hands

שֶׁהֵם גְּבוֹהִים וְנַעֲלִים מֵרֹאשׁ הַתִּינוֹק

which are themselves higher and more elevated than the child’s head

עַד לְמַטָּה מִתַּחַת הַתִּינוֹק וּלְהַגְבִּיהוֹ עַד רֹאֹשׁוֹ שֶׁל אָב,

even below the child, and then lift him up to the level of the father’s own head.

וְאָז יְדַבֵּר וְיִשְׁתַּעֲשֵׁעַ עִמּוֹ פָּנִים בְּפָנִים,

Only then, can he talk and delight with him face to face.

וַהֲרֵי הַהַמְשָׁכָה שֶׁל חֶסֶד הָאָב בְּהַשְׁפָּלַת יָדָיו הוּא חִיצוֹנִיּוּת,

On the surface, the expression of kindness in lowering his arms to pick up the child is only a superficial expression of the father’s love;

שֶׁהוּא רַק לְהַגְבִּיהַּ אֶת הַתִּינוֹק,

he is just lifting up the child.

וְכֵן הַתִּינוֹק אֵינוֹ מְקַבֵּל שׁוּם דָּבָר בְּהַגְבָּהָה זוֹ,

Similarly, the child does not receive anything tangible from that act in itself.

כִּי הֲלֹא לֹא יֵשׁ בָּזֶה שׁוּם הַשְׁפָּעָה,

In its own right, the act of lifting up the child does not express anything.

דְּהַשְׁפָּעָה וְהַשַּׁעֲשׁוּעִים עִם בְּנוֹ הוּא רַק אַחַר כָּךְ

The communication and delight with his son comes only afterwards,

כַּאֲשֶׁר כְּבָר הִגְבִּיהוֹ,

after the father has already lifted him up.

וְרַק שֶׁאִי אֶפְשָׁר לִהְיוֹת הַהַשְׁפָּעָה בְּקֵרוּב וּבִפְנִימִיּוּת

It is only that it is impossible for there to be a close and inner communication

שֶׁלֹּא יִהְיֶה תְּחִלָּה קֵרוּב וַעֲלִיַּת הַמְקַבֵּל,

without first drawing close and lifting up the mekabel, enabling him to approach the level of the mashpia.

שֶׁהוּא הַקֵּרוּב הַחִיצוֹנִי

True, this is a superficial relationship

שֶׁהוּא בִּשְׁבִיל הַהַשְׁפָּעָה פְּנִימִית.

but its purpose is the establishment of a bridge for inner communication.



Summary קִצּוּר.

יְבָאֵר הָא דְּרַבָּה מִקָּמֵי דְּפָתַח לְהוּ לְרַבָּנָן

This section explains that before Rabbah commenced his lesson to the scholars,

לַעֲשׂוֹתָם כֵּלִים רְאוּיִם לְקַבֵּל אֶת דְּבַר הַהַשְׁפָּעָה בַּתּוֹרָה

in order to make them vessels capable of receiving the Torah insights that he would communicate,

אָמַר לָהֶם מִלְּתָא דִּבְדִיחוּתָא

he would relate a humorous remark to them.

לְהַעֲלוֹת אֶת הַמְקַבְּלִים

His humor was intended to elevate his recipients,

שֶׁיּוּכְלוּ לְקַבֵּל אֶת דְּבַר הַהַשְׁפָּעָה,

enabling them to receive the influence he would convey that was above their ordinary level.

וּגְדוֹלָה שִׁמּוּשָׁהּ יוֹתֵר מִלִּמּוּדָהּ,

A similar principle applies in regard to the statement: “Serving a Torah scholar surpasses that of studying under him.”

וַהֲגַם שֶׁהוּא עִנְיָן חִיצוֹנִי לְגַבֵּי פְּנִימִיּוּת הַהַשְׁפָּעָה,

Although the above-mentioned relationships are external in comparison to the inner communication later received from the sage,

אֲבָל מִכָּל מָקוֹם הִנֵּה זֶהוּ דַּוְקָא הַקְדָּמָה אֶל הַפְּנִימִיּוּת,

they are, nevertheless, a necessary preliminary stage.

כְּדֻגְמַת הָאָב הַמֵּרִים אֶת בְּנוֹ הַקָּטָן לְהִשְׁתַּעֲשֵׁעַ עִמּוֹ בְּקֵרוּב פָּנִים בְּפָנִים.

This concept is illustrated by the analogy of a father who reaches down to lift up his small son to delight with him face to face.




— 3 —

וְזֶהוּ

Similar concepts apply regarding the relationship between G‑d and the Jewish people.

דִּכְתִיב "וְאָנֹכִי תִרְגַּלְתִּי לְאֶפְרַיִם קָחָם עַל זְרוֹעֹתָיו" (הוֹשֵׁע יא),

It is written (Hoshea 11:3): “I sent [a leader] to Ephraim; he took them on his arm.”

דְּאָנֹכִי מִי שֶׁאָנֹכִי בָּרוּךְ הוּא

The Hebrew word for “I,” Anochi, represents G‑d’s essence.

הִשְׁפִּיל פְּנִימִיּוּת רְצוֹנוֹ יִתְבָּרֵךְ בְּמִצְווֹת גַּשְׁמִיּוֹת דַּוְקָא

Anochi, G‑d’s Essence, lowered the inner desire of His will and enclothed it within mitzvos to be performed specifically on this physical plane

בִּכְדֵי לְהַגְבִּיהַּ נִשְׁמוֹת יִשְׂרָאֵל,

in order to elevate the souls of the Jewish people, like a father who lowers his arms to pick up his child.

דְּהִנֵּה הָאָדָם הוּא עוֹלָם קָטָן,

This concept is reflected in every individual’s Divine service: Our Sages22 refer to man as a small world, a microcosm of creation.

וּכְמוֹ שֶׁבָּעוֹלָם הֲרֵי יֵשׁ יוֹם וְלַיְלָה,

In the world at large, there is day and night;

דְּבַיּוֹם מֵאִיר הָאוֹר

day being the time when the light shines,

כְּמוֹ שֶׁכָּתוּב "וַיִּקְרָא אֱלֹקִים לָאוֹר יוֹם",

as it is written:23 “And G‑d called the light day,”

וּבְהֶעְדֵּר הָאוֹר הוּא לַיְלָה

while night is the absence of light,

כְּמוֹ שֶׁכָּתוּב "וְלַחֹשֶׁךְ קָרָא לָיְלָה",

as it is written:3 “and the darkness He called night.”

כֵּן הוּא בְּהָאָדָם גַּם כֵּן בְּרוּחָנִיּוּת

Similarly, in each individual’s spiritual world,

דְּיֵשׁ בּוֹ יוֹמָם וָלַיְלָה,

there are parallels to day and night,

וּכְמוֹ שֶׁכָּתוּב גַּם "כִּי אֵשֵׁב בַּחֹשֶׁךְ הֲוָיָ' אוֹר לִי",

as it is written,24 Even “when I sit in darkness, G‑d will serve as a light for me.”

חֹשֶׁךְ הוּא הָעוֹלָם הַזֶּה,

The term “darkness” refers to our material world, where G‑dly light is not overtly apparent. Material reality is openly visible and the G‑dly life-force that maintains it is hidden.

דְּהָעוֹלָם הַזֶּה נִקְרָא "חֹשֶׁךְ" לְפִי שֶׁהוּא עוֹלָם הַשֶּׁקֶר,

This world is called “darkness” because it is a world of falsehood.

G‑dliness is truth and light. When G‑dly light is apparent, the true reality of every situation is readily evident. Since – and only because – G‑dly light is hidden in this world, falsehood can be propagated.

וּכְמוֹ בַּחֹשֶׁךְ הֲרֵי אֵין הָאָדָם רוֹאֶה מְאוּמָה

In the dark, is impossible for a person to see anything;

וְיָכוֹל לִהְיוֹת שֶׁהוּא עוֹמֵד בְּסָמוּךְ לְבוֹר אוֹ לִשְׁאָר דָּבָר הַמַּזִּיק,

and he may be standing at the edge of a pit or near another potential danger without realizing it.

הִנֵּה כְּמוֹ כֵן בָּעוֹלָם הַזֶּה אֵין אָדָם יוֹדֵעַ מַה שֶּׁבְּלִבּוֹ שֶׁל חֲבֵרוֹ עָלָיו,

Similarly, no one in this world can know another’s true feelings about him.25

וְאֶפְשָׁר לִהְיוֹת אֶחָד בַּפֶּה וְאֶחָד בַּלֵּב,

It is possible for someone to say one thing and in truth, feel the opposite within his heart.26

דִּבְפִיו יְכַבֵּד אוֹתוֹ וּמְדַבֵּר עִמּוֹ דִּבְרֵי אַהֲבָה

It is possible that outwardly, one will honor another person with words, speaking with terms of affection,

וּבְלִבּוֹ הוּא שׂוֹנֵא לוֹ,

yet, within his heart he hates him.

וְזֶהוּ מַה שֶּׁהָעוֹלָם הַזֶּה נִקְרָא "חֹשֶׁךְ",

For this reason, this world is called “darkness,”

לְפִי שֶׁהוּא עוֹלָם הַשֶּׁקֶר,

because it is the world of falsehood.

דְּעוֹלָם הַבָּא נִקְרָא "עוֹלָם הָאֱמֶת"

The World to Come, however, is called the “world of truth,”

וְעוֹלָם הַזֶּה נִקְרָא "עָלְמָא דְּשִׁקְרָא",

in contrast, this world is called the world of falsehood.

וְזֶהוּ גַּם "כִּי אֵשֵׁב בַּחֹשֶׁךְ הֲוָיָ' אוֹר לִי",

This is the meaning of the verse, Even “when I sit in darkness, G‑d will serve as a light for me.”

דַּאֲפִלּוּ בָּעוֹלָם הַזֶּה הַגַּשְׁמִי הֲוָיָ' מֵאִיר בְּיִשְׂרָאֵל

Even in this physical world, G‑d’s light shines forth to the Jewish people,

כְּמוֹ שֶׁכָּתוּב "כִּי הִנֵּה הַחֹשֶׁךְ יְכַסֶּה אֶרֶץ וַעֲרָפֶל לְאֻמִּים, וְעָלַיִךְ יִזְרַח הֲוָיָ'",

as it is written:27 “For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and thick darkness the nations, but G‑d shall shine forth to you.”

The name for G‑d used in the above verse is Havayah, Yud-Hei-Vav-Hei.

וְיָדוּעַ דֶּאֱלֹקִים בְּגִימַטְרִיָּא "הַטֶּבַע",

As is well known, G‑d’s name Elokim is numerically equivalent to hateva, meaning “nature,” representing the G‑dliness enclothed in the natural order,

וַהֲוָיָ' הוּא הָיָה הֹוֶה וְיִהְיֶה כְּאֶחָד

while G‑d’s name Havayah combines the past, present, and future forms of the Hebrew root meaning “be,” reflecting how He transcends time, fusing past, present, and future, as one,

שֶׁהוּא לְמַעְלָה מִן הַטֶּבַע

thus reflecting G‑dliness that transcends nature.

וְזֶהוּ "כִּי הַחֹשֶׁךְ יְכַסֶּה אֶרֶץ",

This is the meaning of the above verse, “For the darkness shall cover the earth,”

שֶׁהֵם יוֹדְעִים רַק עִנְיְנֵי הַטֶּבַע,

for the world at large perceives only the natural elements of existence,

אֲבָל "עָלַיִךְ יִזְרַח הֲוָיָ'", שֶׁהוּא לְמַעְלָה מִן הַטֶּבַע.

but G‑d’s name Havayah the G‑dliness that transcends nature – “shall shine forth unto you,” the Jewish people.

וּבָעֲבוֹדָה הוּא

To focus on the parallel in our Divine service:

דְכַאֲשֶׁר נִשְׁמַת הָאָדָם מִתְפַּשֶּׁטֶת בּוֹ

When a man’s soul spreads forth within him,

וְאוֹר כֹּחַ נִשְׁמָתוֹ מְאִירָה לוֹ

and the light of the power of his soul shines for him,

אֲזַי נִקְרָא יוֹם,

then it is called day,

וְכַאֲשֶׁר אוֹר נִשְׁמָתוֹ בִּלְתִּי מְאִירָה לוֹ חַס וְשָׁלוֹם

and when he is in a state where the light of his soul does not shine forth for him, heaven forbid,

אָז הוּא נִקְרָא לַיְלָה,

this is called night.

לָכֵן בַּלַּיְלָה הוּא בִּבְחִינַת שֵׁנָה לְגַמְרֵי

Therefore, at night, a person is in a state of utter sleep,

מֵחֲמַת הִסְתַּלְקוּת אוֹר נַפְשׁוֹ,

because of the withdrawal of the soul’s light.

וּבַבֹּקֶר הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא מַחֲזִיר לְהָאָדָם נִשְׁמָתוֹ,

In the morning, G‑d returns each man’s soul to him,

וּכְמוֹ שֶׁכָּתוּב "חֲדָשִׁים לַבְּקָרִים רַבָּה אֱמוּנָתֶךָ",

as it is written,28 “They are new every morning. Great is Your faithfulness.”

אַךְ מֵחֲמַת שֶׁנִּתְגַשֵּׁם חַיּוּת הַגּוּף מְאֹד,

However, since the body’s life-force became much more materially oriented during sleep,

אֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לְקַבֵּל הֶאָרַת נִשְׁמָתוֹ בְּקִרְבּוֹ כִּי אִם מְעַט מִזְּעֵיר,

it can only receive a slight glimmer of the soul’s light.

וְזֶהוּ "אֲשֶׁר נְשָׁמָה בְּאַפּוֹ",

Such a person is referred to as “one whose soul is in his nostrils,”29

דְּהַיְנוּ שֶׁהַנְּשָׁמָה הָאֱלֹקִית אֵין לָהּ גִּלּוּי בְּלִבּוֹ וְגוּפוֹ

i.e. his G‑dly soul is not revealed in his heart and body

מֵחֲמַת חֹמֶר יֵשׁוּת הַגּוּף

because of the body’s strong self-orientation,

כֵּיוָן שֶׁעֲדַיִן לֹא הִתְפַּלֵּל,

for he has not yet prayed.

דִּתְפִלָּה הוּא עִנְיַן הִתְקַשְּׁרוּת,

Prayer is a process of connection,30 allowing the soul to spread forth and shine its light within the person’s heart and mind.

וְקֹדֶם הַתְּפִלָּה,

Before prayer,

הַיְנוּ קֹדֶם שֶׁהָאָדָם מִתְקַשֵּׁר לֶאֱלֹקוּת עַל יְדֵי עֲבוֹדָה,

i.e., before a person connects himself to G‑d through his Divine service,

כְּתִיב בּוֹ "חִדְלוּ לָכֶם מִן הָאָדָם אֲשֶׁר נְשָׁמָה בְּאַפּוֹ כִּי בַמֶּה נֶחְשָׁב הוּא",

concerning him can be applied the verse,7“Separate yourselves from the man whose soul is in his nostrils, for what can he be accounted for?”

אַל תִּקְרִי בַּמֶּה אֶלָּא בָּמָה,

On this verse, our Sages comment:31 “Do not read bammeh, ‘for what,’ but bammah, “a platform,” a high place.

פֵּרוּשׁ:

The inner meaning of the verse is:

חִדְלוּ לָכֶם, הִבָּדְלוּ עַצְמְכֶם מִן בְּחִינַת אָדָם כָּזֶה שֶׁנִּשְׁמָתוֹ רַק בְּאַפָּיו,

“Separate yourself from such a person whose soul is merely in his nostrils,”

שֶׁלֹּא נִתְפַּשְּׁטָה עוֹד נִשְׁמָתוֹ בְּכָל גּוּפוֹ,

meaning that his soul has yet to spread throughout the whole body,

i.e., its light does not shine within his heart and mind.

כִּי בָּמָה נֶחְשָׁב,

The verse continues, “for what can he be accounted for?”,

שֶׁהוּא נֶחְשָׁב כְּמוֹ בָּמָה,

which our Sages interpret to mean, he is considered like a platform.

וּכְשֵׁם שֶׁהַבָּמָה הוּא דָּבָר גָּבוֹהַּ וְנִרְאֶה הַיֵּשׁוּת שֶׁלּוֹ לְדָבָר בִּפְנֵי עַצְמוֹ,

Just as a platform is a high place, which in a personal sense can be interpreted as referring to one whose self-concern causes him to appear as a distinct and separate entity;

כֵּן הָאָדָם הַזֶּה הוּא עוֹד יֵשׁ וּמְצִיאוּת עַד אֲשֶׁר מִתְפַּלֵּל,

so too, such a person is as of yet a self-oriented and a self-concerned entity until he prays.

שֶׁהוּא עִנְיַן הַהִתְקַשְּׁרוּת שֶׁמִּתְקַשֵּׁר בֶּאֱלֹקוּת,

Prayer is a process of connection that binds a person with G‑d

וְעַל יְדֵי הַתְּפִלָּה עוֹשֶׂה כָּל הַדְּבָרִים הַגַּשְׁמִיִּים כֵּלִים לֶאֱלֹקוּת,

and through prayer, one makes all material objects mediums for G‑dliness.

וּבִכְדֵי שֶׁיִּהְיֶה הַקֵּרוּב פְּנִימִי

In order to establish such an inner connection

לְהַמְשִׁיךְ הָאוֹר הָאֱלֹקִי בְּכָל הָעִנְיָנִים הַגַּשְׁמִיִּים

that will enable him to draw down G‑dly light into all his material concerns,

צָרִיךְ לִהְיוֹת תְּחִלָּה הַקֵּרוּב כְּלָלִי,

it is necessary to first establish a general closeness.

וְלָכֵן אֵין עוֹמְדִין לְהִתְפַּלֵּל אֶלָּא מִתּוֹךְ כֹּבֶד רֹאשׁ,

For this reason, to use our Sages’ words,32 “one should rise to prayer only in a mode of earnest contemplation.”33

וּפֵרֵשׁ רַשִׁ"י – הַכְנָעָה וְשִׁפְלוּת,

which Rashi explains34 to mean submissiveness and humility,

i.e., his meditation on G‑d’s greatness and his own insignificance, causes him to be submissive and humble before Him,

שֶׁהוּא עִנְיַן הַקֵּרוּב הַכְּלָלִי.

thus establishing a general connection between him and G‑d.

וְזֶהוּ "לְכָה דּוֹדִי לִקְרַאת כַּלָּה" –

This is the meaning of the phrase, “Come, my beloved to greet the bride.” Lechah, translated as “come,” literally, means to “go,” to proceed.

קֵרוּב הַמַּשְׁפִּיעַ אֶל הַמְקַבֵּל,

It represents the preliminary step through which the mashpiaproceeds, i.e., draws close to the mekabel.

הִנֵּה עַל יְדֵי זֶה "פְּנֵי שַׁבָּת נְקַבְּלָה"

This preparatory stage makes it possible to, “welcome the Shabbos,

Lekabel panim – the root of the Hebrew term used – literally, means “to receive the face.” Panim, “face,” also means “inner dimension.” Through the preliminary step of stepping forth, it is possible to receive the inner dimension of the Shabbos. When that inner dimension is revealed,

דְּכָל הַיָּמִים מִתְבָּרְכִין מֵהַשַּׁבָּת,

for “all the days are blessed from the Shabbos.”

On one hand, all the days of the week prepare for Shabbos, for on Shabbos, it is forbidden to perform any work and one must partake of what he prepared previously. Conversely, Shabbos serves as the source for the blessings for all the days of the week. This pattern is reflected in all mashpia-mekabel relationships. Initially, the mashpia must extend himself and give to the mekabel, but by receiving, the mekabel reveals his (or her) inner dimension and then becomes a source of influence for the mashpia.

וְעַל דֶּרֶךְ בְּהַשְׁפָּעַת הָרַב וְתַלְמִיד,

To cite an example: Regarding a teacher-student relationship, our Sages taught,35

דְּ"הַרְבֵּה קִבַּלְתִּי מֵרַבּוֹתַי כוּ'

“I have learned much from my teachers, and from my colleagues more than from my teachers,

וּמִתַּלְמִידַי יוֹתֵר מִכֻּלָּם",

but from my students more than from them all,”

וְכֵן כְּתִיב "אֵשֶׁת חַיִל עֲטֶרֶת בַּעְלָהּ",

Similarly, “A woman of valor is the crown of her husband,”36

i.e. through serving as a recipient, she ascends to the extent that she becomes a crown, elevated above his head.

וּכְתִיב "מָצָא אִשָּׁה מָצָא טוֹב",

And it is written,37 “One who finds a wife finds goodness and calls forth G‑d’s favor.”

וְיָפִיקוּ רָצוֹן מֵה' הַטּוֹב

May the groom and the bride call forth the favor of G‑d Who is good

בְּדוֹר יְשָׁרִים יְבֹרָךְ,

and merit blessed and righteous generations of offspring,

בְּבָנִים וּבְנֵי בָּנִים עוֹסְקִים בַּתּוֹרָה וּמִצְווֹת.

with children and grandchildren who are engaged in the Torah and its mitzvos.



Summary קִצּוּר.

יְבָאֵר כִּי זֶהוּ עִנְיַן מַה שֶּׁהוּא יִתְבָּרֵךְ הִשְׁפִּיל פְּנִימִיּוּת רְצוֹנוֹ יִתְבָּרֵךְ בְּמִצְווֹת מַעֲשִׂיּוֹת,

This section explains that G‑d lowered His inner will and enclothed it within mitzvos performed on the physical plane.

כִּי הָאָדָם עוֹלָם קָטָן,

Man is a microcosm of creation.

וְהָעוֹלָם הַזֶּה נִקְרָא "חֹשֶׁךְ",

This world is called “darkness,”

כִּי הוּא עָלְמָא דְּשִׁקְרָא,

because it is a world of falsehood.

וְכַאֲשֶׁר אוֹר נִשְׁמַת הָאָדָם מְאִירָה בּוֹ בָּעֲבוֹדָה נִקְרָא "יוֹם",

There are parallels to light and darkness in a person’s Divine service. When the light of a man’s soul shines within him in his service of G‑d then it is called day;

וּבְהֶעְדֵּר הָעֲבוֹדָה נִקְרָא "לַיְלָה",

and the absence of such service is called night.

וְנִקְרָא "נְשָׁמָה בְּאַפּוֹ"

Such a person is referred to as one “whose soul is in his nostrils.”

שֶׁעָלָיו נֶאֱמַר "חִדְלוּ לָכֶם מִן הָאָדָם",

About such a person it is said, “Separate yourself from [such a] man….”

זֶה שֶׁהוּא כְּמוֹ בָּמָה, שֶׁהוּא יֵשׁ,

He resembles a platform, a distinct and separate entity, for he is concerned with himself, and hence, termed, a yesh.

וְהַקֵּרוּב לֶאֱלֹקוּת הוּא עַל יְדֵי תְּפִלָּה,

It is possible to draw closer to G‑d through prayer

שֶׁהוּא עִנְיַן הַהִתְקַשְּׁרוּת,

which is a process of connection.

דְּאָז בִּיכָלְתּוֹ לְקַשֵּׁר כָּל הָעִנְיָנִים הַגַּשְׁמִיִּים בֶּאֱלֹקוּת בְּיִחוּד גָּמוּר.

After establishing such a connection, it is then within a person’s power to connect all his material concerns to G‑d and establish total unity between them and G‑d.