The Sixties Radical-Azriel

Truth is simple, it has no clothes, no neat little box to contain it.

But we cannot grasp that which has no box. We cannot perceive truth without clothing.

So Truth dresses up for us, in a story, in sage advice, in a blueprint of the cosmos—in clothes woven from the fabric of truth itself.

And then, before we can imagine that we have grasped Truth, it switches clothes. It tells us another story—entirely at odds with the first. It tells us new advice—to go in a different direction. It provides another model of how things are—in which each thing has changed its place.

The fool is confused. He exclaims, “Truth has lied!”

The wise person sees within and finds harmony between all the stories, all the advice, every model we are told.

For the Torah is a simple, pure light, a truth no box can contain.

The Sixties Radical-Azriel

There are questions to which G‑d says to be quiet, to be still, to cease to ask.

The quietness, the stillness, the abandonment of being, that itself is an answer.

Tetzeh 5725:

The Sixties Radical-Azriel

We all have our roles in bringing about the Messianic redemption. “Jacob concluded his blessings to his children by blessing them all with all the characteristics unique to each one individually.

[Jacob] gave them all the blessings that he gave each one individually. Genesis 49:28

Although we each have our unique roles in our Divine mission to make this world into G‑d’s home, we are all involved to some extent in the roles played by others, as well. There are three increasingly effective ways that we can do this:

We all focus exclusively on our personal tasks, but since we are working toward the same goal, we all share in the results of our separate accomplishments.

We invite and encourage one another to participate occasionally in the personal activity that we emphasize.

When we periodically engage in tasks other than our forte, we immerse ourselves in them just as fully as we do when we engage in our personal task.

Participating in each other’s endeavors fosters Jewish unity, making us worthy of G‑d’s blessings, including – and especially – the ultimate blessing, the Messianic Redemption.1 Likutei Sichot, vol. 25, pp. 287–291.

The Sixties Radical-Azriel

G-d didn’t tell Moshe for us to be rebuked instead G-d told Moshe to remind us of our heritage and who we are. Then G-d would redeem us and bring us out of exile.

Moshe did tell us to stop serving idols.

This is the key. G-d wants us to see the beauty of our heritage and who we are in G-d.

“G‑d told Moses that He was now going to redeem the Jewish people in order to give them the Torah and to bring them to the Land of Israel. Moses asked how he should explain G‑d’s silence throughout the Jews’ century of slavery. G‑d replied that He indeed felt their pain throughout their exile. However, the exile had a purpose, and His mercy is operative at all times, even if it is hidden. G‑d then told Moses that if he tells the people that the time of their redemption has arrived, they will believe him – despite their complaints about G‑d’s treatment of them.

G‑d told Moses to tell the people], “I have indeed remembered you and what is being done to you in Egypt.” Exodus 3:16

Even though the Jews had sunk to a dangerously low spiritual state, even serving idols, G‑d did not tell Moses to rebuke them or to warn them that if they do not mend their ways their exile will continue. Rather, G‑d instructed him to remind them of the merit of their forbears and to announce that in this merit and in the merit of their suffering they were about to be redeemed. Only much later, when he had an alternative for them – a commandment for them to fulfill – did Moses tell the Jews to stop serving idols.

Similarly, the most effective way to draw the hearts of our fellow Jews closer to G‑d is by first showing them the beauty of their heritage and uplifting them with the promise of the Redemption.1 Sefer HaSichot 5751, vol. 1, pp. 250, 252.”

The Sixties Radical-Azriel

When He made the world, He decided He would take the role of Kindness. That way, when we would be kind, we could bond to Him with our kindness.

He decided to be Wisdom. That way, by being wise, we could bond to Him with our wisdom.

He decided to be conscious of Himself, so that we could attain consciousness of that which is beyond knowing.

And all this He gave to us in His Torah. He gave us Himself.

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Here is what true joy is. “Jacob’s final years, spent in Egypt with his reunited family, were the best in his life.

Jacob lived 17 years in Egypt. Genesis 47:28

Notwithstanding Jacob’s joy in seeing his family reunited and faithful to their traditions, it is still hard to imagine how the years he spent in the idolatrous environment of Egypt could be the best of his life. The answer to this puzzle is that, as mentioned previously, Jacob had sent Judah to set up an academy for the study of the Torah in Egypt. Jacob thereby ensured that he and his descendants would remain immune to the negative influences of Egypt’s corrupt society.

Furthermore, by resisting the enticements of Egypt, Jacob’s children grew in a way that is only possible when we are faced with challenges. This is why Jacob’s best years were those that he spent in Egypt, for it was only there that he could see that his children had fully absorbed his moral instruction and guidance. He now knew that the Divine mission begun by his grandfather, Abraham, would continue.

Similarly, we often find ourselves in “Egypt,” in places of spiritual darkness. Like Jacob and his family, through studying the Torah we remain safe from the darkness of “Egypt” and reveal G‑dliness even there.1 Likutei Sichot, vol. 10, pp. 160–166.

The Sixties Radical-Azriel

Torah is not simply a path by which you gradually arrive at truth.

When you are immersed in Torah, even while pondering the question, even while struggling to make sense of it all, you are at truth already.

Torah is about being truth. And then, the questions will have true answers, the struggle a true resolution. By being truth, you​r​ ​destiny is yet a higher truth. Tanya, Chapter 5. See also Hayom Yom for the 20th of Adar I.

The Sixties Radical