Daily Tanya 15th Adar 1: End of Chapter Chapter 29-Contemplating one’s dreams of nonsense and vanity

(LY) 15th Adar 1

3.      Contemplating one’s dreams of nonsense and vanity:

  • Another matter that one can contemplate and take to heart [to bring him to a state of broken heartedness] are the many dreams that he has when he sleeps which are filled with vanity and matters of the world.
  • Soul not going above to heaven: These dreams of vanity occur because one’s soul is not being elevated above to heaven upon him sleeping, as it states in the verse “who will go out to the mountain of G-d, only those who are of clean hands.”
  • The side of evil attaches to the persons soul during his sleep and causes him dreams of nonsense: Now, being that the soul is not going above to heaven during sleep due to its spiritual blemishes, this invites the side of evil to send its forces to attach to him during his sleep. They are the ones who enter his mind and cause him to dream of matters of vanity and of this world.
  • Nightmares: On occasion, these forces of evil scoff at the person and show him in his dreams matters of deception, and cause him pain during his dream, as written in the Zohar, see there in length.

4.      The longer the contemplation the more the animal soul is crushed, and the G-dly soul is revealed:

  • Repulsing one’s own life: The longer that one contemplates on the above matters in order to break his heart, both through contemplating in his mind and through reading books on the subject, the more he is able to despise and degrade his own soul to the ultimate state of repulsion, to the point that he actually despises his own life.
  • Degrading the side of evil: Through doing so, he causes also for the side of impurity to become repulsed and despised and brings it down to the dust from its state of haughtiness and arrogance, which it had elevated itself over the light of the G-dly soul in order to darken it. [Accordingly, doing the above exercise removes the darkness and concealment of the side of evil from his G-dly soul.]

5.      Shouting and screaming at one’s animal soul to crush it:

  • In addition to the above contemplation and research from books, one should also scream and shout at his animal soul, which refers to his evil inclination, in a loud voice, in order to crush it and humble it. This follows the advice of the sages who state that one should always anger his good inclination over his evil inclination, which refers to his animal soul which is the evil inclination.
  • How to admonish the evil inclination: One should scream and admonish his animal soul in his mind by telling it that it is truly evil and wicked, [a selfish narcissist, a gluttonous and lust filled animal] etc. etc. He should tell his animal soul, “For how long will you continue to conceal the light of G-d from me? G-d is found everywhere during all times, past present and future, and is also found right here in this area that I am in, just as the infinite light of G-d was found prior to creation without any change at all, and you, putrid one, conceal this existence from me. You continue to conceal this fact and deny the truth which is clearly visible that everything is truly nullified to G-d in a most vivid manner.”

6.      The benefit of the above admonishing and crushing of the animal soul:

  • A true seeing of G-d’s unity: The above admonishing of the evil inclination will help remove the concealment of the animal soul from the G-dly soul and allow it to experience the unity of the infinite light of G-d in a real way which is similar to sight and not on the level of hearing and understanding alone.
  • The root of all one’s Divine service: Experiencing G-d in a way of sight is the major root of all one’s Divine service, [and hence the above exercise to remove the concealment from the G-dly soul and allow it to experience G-d’s unity the form of sight is of much importance].

7.      How crushing the animal soul causes the G-dly soul to once again experience G-d:

  • Evil is like darkness and has no true substance: The reason [that shouting and crushing the animal soul has ability to then reveal the G-dly soul and have it experience G-d] is because the side of evil does not really have any true substance to it at all and is hence referred to as darkness which is simply a lack of light and has no intrinsic substance of its own at all.
  • The moment one shines light, the darkness disappears: Now, just as regarding light, the moment one turns the light on in the room the darkness is banished, so too regarding evil, the moment one shines the light of good the darkness disappears.
  • How can one say that evil has no substance if it gives vitality to the entire physical world? In truth, the side of evil contains much energy and power as it gives vitality to all living creatures including those from the complete side of evil, including impure animals and Gentiles. [Accordingly, how can one say that evil has no substance?]
  • The energy and life force of evil derives from holiness: [The answer to the above is that] in truth evil contains no intrinsic energy of its own and all of its energy and vitality comes from the side of holiness. Accordingly, it becomes completely nullified in the face of holiness, which is a source of energy, just as darkness becomes nullified once physical light appears.
  • If so, then how can it conceal the G-dly soul-G-d gives the animal soul power to overcome the G-dly soul? [According to the above it is not understood how the animal soul at all has the power to conceal the G-dly soul and prevent it from experiencing G-dliness if we just stated above, that on the contrary, it becomes completely nullified in face of G-dliness and light, and is not the G-dly soul G-dliness and light? However, in truth the answer is] that regarding the G-dly soul specifically, G-d made an exception and allowed the animal soul to conceal it and not be banished in its presence, in order to arouse man to strengthen himself to overcome it, and crush it on his own by humbling himself and destroying his pride to the point that he is repulsive and hideous in his own eyes.
  • If so, then how can crushing it remove its G-d-given power of concealment; Crushing one’s animal soul causes G-d to remove its power to conceal the G-dly soul: [Although G-d Himself gives the power to the animal soul to conceal the G-dly soul, and therefore technically this power should remain and the concealment should remain even after one crushes the animal soul, the reason it does not remain is because] when man crushes his own personal animal soul, this causes an arousal above in heaven for G-d to likewise crush and lower the side of evil, and remove the permission he gave to the animal soul to conceal and overcome the holiness of the G-dly soul, and once its permission to overpower the G-dly soul is removed as a result of one crushing it, then it returns to its natural state and is nullified and cast away just as darkness is casted away in face of physical light.


8.      A source for the above concept from the sin of the Meraglim, and the Jewish resolve and faith expressed after G-d admonished them:

  • How can a complete lack of faith be followed by a complete and pure faith in G-d? Proof for the above concept [that crushing the animal soul then in turn automatically reveals the G-dly soul] can be found by the episode which discusses the sin of the Meraglim. In the beginning it says that the Jewish people exclaimed disbelief in G-d’s ability to conquer the land of Israel, and hence did not want to go up to Israel at all. Immediately afterwards, however, it says that they themselves decided to go up and conquer Israel on their own even though they did not receive permission from Moses to do so. It does not make any sense as to why they suddenly changed their beliefs regarding G-d’s ability to conquer the land. Nothing happened in between, such as a miracle by Moshe, to prove G-d’s ability to do so, and the only thing that happened in between is that Moshe told them how G-d became angry with them and swore that [they would be punished by G-d for their lack of faith and that now] they would not enter the land after all. How would this punishment by G-d and His promise not to bring them into the land restore their faith in Him that He can now conquer it, if to begin with they did not believe in the power of G-d to conquer the 31 Kings, heaven forbid, and due to this they did not want to enter the land at all.
  • The explanation-A Jew truly believes in G-d’s capability although it is concealed by the side of evil: The explanation to the above question is as follows: Certainly, the Jewish people themselves are believers the son of believers in G-d and his infinite capabilities, however, the side of evil which is invested in their bodies, arrogantly raised itself over the light of the holiness of their G-dly soul with a great haughtiness and pride, and an audacity that contains no reason or rationale. [This hovering over the G-dly soul is what concealed this belief and faith in G-d, and hence caused them to express disbelief in G-d’s ability to conquer Israel.]
  • The admonishing by G-d destroyed the concealment caused by the side of evil: However, the moment that G-d got angry with them and then admonished them and shouted at them with anger and fury for being such an evil nation, and promised to have them die in the desert, then these somber and morbid words caused their hearts to become humbled and crushed, as the verse states that the nation entered a great state of mourning. This automatically caused the side of evil to lose its control and arrogance and pride with which it was able to conceal the G-dly soul, and hence the natural and intrinsic faith that the Jewish people have in G-d returned to their consciousness.


9.      A lesson regarding how to deal with questions on faith in G-d:

  • The questions on faith in G-d derive from the side of evil: From the above story with the Meraglim every Jew can learn a lesson that if a Jew has thoughts of heresy and questions regarding his faith in G-d, in truth, these thoughts are simply coming from the side of evil which is arrogantly raising itself and concealing his natural and instinctive faith in G-d, which every Jew contains.

10.  Even the side of evil has true belief in G-d without question:

  • Even the side of evil does not have any questions in its faith in G-d, and it was simply given permission to play devil’s advocate and confuse man below with false arguments and deceiving and manipulative questions, in order to increase man’s reward.
  • The side of evil is like a harlot hired by the king: This is similar to a harlot who was appointed by the king to try and seduce his son with false claims, in order to increase the son’s value and greatness in the eyes of the king, as explained in the Zohar.

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