Tanya Chapter 36: Dira Betachtonim-The purpose of the worlds creation

Chapter 36: Dira Betachtonim-The purpose of the world’s creation

21st Adar/(LY) 7th Adar 2

  1. The purpose of the world’s creation:
  • There is a well-known statement of the sages that the purpose of the world’s creation is due to the fact that G-d desired to have a dwelling place below in this lower world.
  1. The concept of higher and lower in relation to G-d is in terms of concealment of His divine light:
  • Before G-d, the entire concept of higher and lower is not applicable as He fills the entire world equally. Thus, the true meaning of this “lower world” in which G-d desires a dwelling place is not geographical, but rather from the perspective of concealment of G-dliness versus revelation.
  • G-d fills all the world’s even now, although this is concealed from creations: Before the world was created, G-d was the only existence which filled all space in which the world was created. Furthermore, even now this holds true from the perspective of G-d. The only difference is from the perspective of the creations who are the recipients of G-d’s light through many garments and forms of concealment which hide G-d’s entity and existence. Even the higher Angels which are referred to as “Chayos” are not able to see G-d, as no creation can see G-d and live.
  • The chain descent of the world’s known as Hishtalshelus: The above mentioned garments and concealments which shield G-d’s light from the creations is the entire foundation of Seder Hishtalshelus, which is the gradational descent of the revelation of G-d’s light to the creations, and its increased concealment and darkness. The lower the level the more concealing garments it contains, which affects a greater concealment of G-d’s light.
  • Our world is the lowest level of concealment: This chain descent of concealment continued until its lowest level was created, which is this physical and gross world, of which there is no lower level of concealment of G-d’s light with a doubled and redoubled darkness. This is also why our world is filled with evil and impure forces which actually oppose G-d and deny His existence, stating and acting in a way that they are the only true existence.

(LY) 8th Adar 2

  1. The purpose of the descent in revelation of G-d’s light is for our physical world:
  • The purpose cannot be for the higher worlds: The purpose of the gradational descent of the world and the increasing concealment of G-d’s light and revelation was not done for the sake and purpose of the upper worlds, which experience a greater revelation of G-dliness than the lower world, as nonetheless these worlds are of no gain for G-d being that it is still a descent from the original revelation of G-d’s light that existed prior to the creation.
  • The lowest world which contains evil that can be subjugated and transformed is the ultimate purpose of creation: Rather, one must conclude that the purpose of creation is for this lowest physical world, and the purpose for its creation is because G-d desired to receive pleasure from the subjugation of the forces of darkness and evil and there ultimate transformation into divinity. Now, this G-dly experience of joy from the subjugation and transformation of evil is only possible to be accomplished in this physical world, which is the lowest of all the worlds and contains the evil that needs to be subjugated and transformed.
  • Filling the entire world with G-d’s light: The ultimate purpose is not just to subjugate evil, but to shine the infinite light of G-d within this place of darkness and evil and have it be revealed within this entire world.
  • This world will experience the ultimate revelation of G-d-Light shines greater in a place of darkness: Furthermore, this infinite light of G-d that we are tasked to shine within this physical world is of even greater quality and intensity than that which already shines in the upper worlds, as light contains a superior quality when it shines in an area of darkness. Likewise, even in the upper worlds their revelation of G-d is through many garments of concealment which prevent the infinite light of G-d from being seen in order, so it does not become nullified in its existence. However, through our work in this physical world of transforming darkness to light, we will experience the shining of the actual infinite light of G-d.

(LY)9th Adar 2

  1. The purpose of the Torah is to enable physical creation to receive G-d’s infinite light:
  • It is for this purpose that G-d gave the Jewish people the Torah which is called strength and power, as the Torah gives man the power and capability of being able to receive the reward of the future era, which is to bask in the revelation of G-d’s infinite light, without then becoming nullified in their existence [as would occur in the upper world if this revelation were to take place.]
  • No more garments: In the future, G-d’s infinite light will be revealed without any garments of concealment and nonetheless creations will be able to withstand this life due to the Torah which gives them the strength to do so, and they will thus experience seeing G-d eye to eye.
  1. The purpose of creation, to reveal G-d’s infinite light, will be realized after the resurrection:
  • It is known that the purpose of the world’s creation will be realized in the times of the Messiah, particularly after the time of the resurrection.
  • Why the purpose of creation will be realized after the resurrection: The reason for this is because specifically at this time the infinite light of G-d will be revealed to creations without any garments of concealment, and the creations will be able to withstand this level of revelation. This is the entire purpose and ultimate fulfillment of the world’s creation to begin with, to have G-d’s infinite light well within the lower realms, [and have these realms remain in their lower state without extinction].
  1. Gloss-The time period for receiving reward:
  • The purpose of creation will be realized in the times of the Messiah after the resurrection, as stated above. However, this is different than the reward that will be given to the creations for their service in bringing about the realization of G-d’s will of having a dwelling place below. Rather, the time period for the reward of creations will be later on in the seventh millennium.

22nd Adar/(LY) 10th Adar 2

  1. The above revelation of G-d in this world was already experienced in the times of the giving of the Torah:
  • Seeing G-d: A similar revelation of G-d in this world was already experienced in the times of the giving of the Torah, as Scripture explicitly states that we were shown G-d with an actual physical sight. We were shown that there is no other existence other than G-d.
  • Seeing the sounds: Hence it states regarding the giving of the Torah that we saw the sounds, meaning that we saw that which is usually only heard.
  • Hearing the commands from all directions: The sages teach us that by the giving of the 10 Commandments, the Jewish people heard the voice of G-d and His command of that “I am G-d” from every direction they looked at, from all four directions and up and down. This is emphasized in the words of the Zohar which states that there was no area from which the word of G-d did not come from. [This emphasizes that G-d was revealed everywhere at the time of the giving of the Torah.]
  • The Torah does not conceal G-dliness: The reason that by the giving of the 10 Commandments G-d was revealed everywhere is because the 10 Commandments include the entire Torah within them, and the Torah is the inner wisdom and will of G-d which does not conceal Him at all, as the verse states that “with the light of Your face You gave us the living Torah.”
  • The reason we lost our existence: Accordingly, it is understood why we also lost our existence by the giving of the Torah, as our sages teach us that our souls left our bodies during the event. [This is due to the fact that G-d was truly revealed at this time, and the Jewish people who are creations were not capable of handling this revelation.]
  • The Torah is the dew of resurrection: The Torah gives the Jewish people the power necessary to nonetheless withstand the revelation of G-d and not experience an expiry of existence, and hence the sages teach us that it was the Dew of Torah that resurrected us during the event after our souls left our bodies. This dew is what will also resurrect us in the future, and comes as a result of our Torah learning as the Sages state that whoever studies Torah the dew of Torah resurrects him.

 (LY) 11th Adar 2

  1. What happened after the giving of the Torah that we lost this revelation:
  • The sin of the golden calf: [After the Torah was given, we could have retained this power and capability to withstand the revelation of G-d Himself, although] the sin [of the golden calf] caused the Jewish people and the world to once again become gross and concealing of G-d.
  • This concealment is around until the final redemption: This concealment that was caused due to the sin will remain within the world until the future era when the body and world will once again be refined enough to withstand the revelation of the light of G-d, which will shine to the Jewish people through the Torah which is called “Oz/power,” [as the Torah gives the soul the power to handle the revelation].
  1. The Gentiles will also experience revelation in the future:
  • [Gentiles will be able to exist in the future despite the fact that they do not learn Torah and technically cannot withstand the revelation of G-d without becoming nullified in existence] as from the great abundance of divine light that will be revealed to the Jewish people, a glimmer of this light will also shine the darkness of the Gentile nations, and hence, the revelation of G-d will affect all of the inhabitants of the world.
  • This concept is reiterated in many verses of Scripture and the prayer liturgy, that the Gentile nations will also receive revelation of G-dliness, and that this revelation will be from the light of the Jewish people.
  • The Gentile nations will need to hide from this revelation: [Nonetheless, the experience of this revelation will not be the same between Jew and Gentile, as] the Gentiles will need to hide within caves and rocks due to the trepidation they will have in face of the majestic glory of G-d that will be revealed. [This is in contrast to the Jewish people, who will be unified with G-d, and due to the Torah, the able to withstand his revelation completely.]

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