Daily Tanya 28th Nissan Chapter 44: The love of a Baal Teshuvah


Chapter 44: Loving Hashem-The love for life & love for your father

(LY) 28th Nissan

  1. Finding your personal love-The myriads of levels in the two types of love:
  • Both qualities of love described in the previous chapter, which are Ahavah Raba and Ahavas Olam, subdivide into limitless grades and levels which correspond to each person on his level.
  • One’s level of Love is personally tailored for him: The specific grade and level attained by the individual is dependent on the personal spiritual capacity granted to his soul by G-d. This follows the statement of the Zohar[1], which interprets the verse[2] “Noda Bashearim Baalah/The husband knows in the gates,” that this verse is describing Hashem [i.e. the husband of every Jewish soul] and how He attaches Himself in accordance with the gates of each person’s heart.
  • Torah and Mitzvahs are equal for all while love fluctuates by person: It is for this reason that the Torah[3] describes the feelings of love and fear as “Nistaros LaHashem Elokeinu, matters that are hidden and known only to G-d” as in truth every Jewish soul has ability to experience a unique form and level of love in his heart which is only known to G-d. However, the Torah and Mitzvahs are considered “revealed to us and our children” as they equally apply to all Jews, as all Jews must follow the same Torah laws and perform the same actions of the Mitzvahs. This is in contrast to fear and love, its level and quality experienced by the person is dependent on his heart and mind.


  1. A love that incorporates all levels and is plausible for all people-The love for life:
  • There exists one love that is incorporated of all the aspects and levels of Ahava Raba and Ahavas Olam, and is plausible for every Jew, being an inheritance from our forefathers. This love is referred to in the Zohar as the love of life.
  • G-d is our life and we therefore love Him as we live our life: The Zohar[4] brings the verse[5] “Nafshi Avisicha Balayla etc./My soul, I desire you at night” and interprets it as follows: One should love Hashem the same way that he loves his soul and spirit, just as they are attached to the body and the body loves them. This then is the meaning of the words “My soul I desire you,” it means to say, “Since you Hashem are my soul and true life; therefore, I desire You.” Meaning, I desire and yearn for You like a man who yearns for the life of his soul.
  • It is mostly conscious when you are weak or sleeping: This yearning for life becomes conscious in a person mostly when he is weak, and feels sick, in which case he desires and yearns that his soul return to him. Similarly, when one goes to sleep, he desires and waits that his soul returns to him upon awakening.
  • A yearning to attach to G-d through learning His Torah: To this same measure one has a natural yearning and desire for Hashem and His infinite light who is the true source of life, to draw it down into his innards through learning Torah after awakening at night, as the Torah and Hashem are One. This too is expressed in the Zohar, as it states that man needs out of love for G-d to awaken each night and try to learn Torah until morning.


[1] Zohar 1 103b [Lech Lecha]

[2] Mishlei 31:23

[3] Devarim 29:28

[4] Zohar 3 68a

[5] Yeshayahu 26:9

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