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Secret of Brit Book - Chapter 5: Rectify The Brit II
Written by Michael   
Tuesday, 09 May 2006

The Road To Rectification

4. The Secrets Of Torah


ImageWe mentioned that the great Torah scholar, the Chatam Sofer, was wont to discuss the importance of Shmirat HaBrit on the eve of Yom Kippur. One of his sermons explained how the Kol Nidre prayer was mystically structured to rectify transgressions of the Brit.

At the beginning of the Kol Nidre prayer, we recite a verse of Tehillim seven times: “Light (ohr) is sown (zarua) for the tzaddik, and gladness for the upright in heart.” (Tehillim, 97:11) The word, ohr, has the same numerical value as the word raz, meaning secret. Through the influence of raz (the secrets of Torah,) a process of sowing, zarua, takes place, whereby the spiritual and intellectual light of the zera (the semen whose source is the brain) is sown in the tzaddik - the Yesod. (M’tok M’Dvash, Commentary on the Zohar, Tikunei Zohar, Tikun 21, Folio 50a)

This means that learning the secrets of Torah replenishes the waters of the Yesod. The Kol Nidre prayer is thus a rectification of the Yesod. Many others facets of the Day of Atonement are connected with Tikun HaBrit, including the service of the Kohen HaGadol in the Beit HaMikdash. The very day itself, the tenth day of the month Tishrei, is the day the Avraham Avinu performed his brit milah, making it the day for Tikun HaBrit for all generations to come.  This integral connection between Yom Kippur and Tikun HaBrit can be found in the writings of the Sfat Emet (See his first essay on the Ten Days of Tshuva,) and in the teachings of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov (Likutei Halachot, Yom Kippur, 1:1)

As mentioned, one of the keys to understanding the importance and necessity of Tikun HaBrit is the study of the holy Zohar which has the cleansing power to sanctify and transform a person from within. Of course, one should not, and cannot, dive into the secrets of Torah before he has learned how to study Mishna, Gemara, and works of halacha, as our rabbis have warned. Rather, a person should strive to learn each discipline of Torah, each in its proper place, time, and measure, by learning the simple and inner meanings as well. To do this properly, one needs the inspiration and counsel of a sage versed in all aspects of Torah, including the secret understandings of the Brit.  Shmirat HaBrit and the secrets of Torah are interconnected, as the verse of Tehillim implies: “The secret of  Hashem is with those who fear Him, to make known to them His Brit.” (Tehillim, 25:14) This means that only the person who delves into the secrets of Torah will come to understand that guarding the Brit is the foundation of all moral and spiritual life. In parallel, Hashem only reveals the secrets of Torah to those who guard the Brit in uppermost purity.  In other words, the secrets of Torah are not meant to be learned as an exercise in intellectual discovery, but rather only in concurrence with an intense course of spiritual and moral cleansing, as books like “Mesillat Yesharim” and “Shaare Kedusha” make clear.

Last Updated ( Sunday, 17 September 2006 )
 
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