500.20 PURPOSE (pps.100-103)

hard cover page 101

And God blessed them, and God said to them: “Be fruitful and multiply and replenish the earth, and conquer it.”
-Genesis 1:28

Populate the earth and conquer it. But there was no one to conquer it from-Adam and Eve were the sole human inhabitants of the earth. And further, why the positioning of the two important directives in one sentence?

Rather, the sentence should be understood as: “Populate the earth and master it! Conquer its potential-you and (through) your offspring.”

The commentaries note that there is a letter (vav) missing from the word ve-kiv-shu-ha, “and conquedmaster it.” The key word is incomplete, deficient. We suggest that the key word is left “open” because the quest itself is not finitely demarcated. It is boundless. For potential brushes up against infinity. The quest is not one attainable by a single person or generation. It is a goal to be quested after by the elevation of generation after generation, onward through time.

When gratuitous hate (sin’at chinam) is ascendant, man’s spiritual development is stymied. All is for naught. When the Jew focuses his awesome potential energies invalidly instead of positively and outwardly, his forward ascent comes to a halt. A Beit Hamikdash (Holy Temple) or synagogue becomes simply an affectation, inasmuch as its primary goal, the spiritual elevation of man, is blocked.

Once one has established the bounds between what a religion claims and what it can prove, one may then seek to elevate oneself spiritually. Judaism provides a route. It gives direction, while Jewish law circumscribes the path which may be taken. Well-established direction provides plentiful room for spiritual construct and elevation.

Halakhic man is also a homo religiosus in all his loftiness and splendor. His soul, too, thirsts for the living God, and these streams of yearning surge and flow to the sea of transcendence to “God who conceals Himself in His dazzling hiddenness” [the


CONVERSION TABLE for this multi-page unit
you are currently on hard cover p. 101
Pages pointer hard cover page

Pages: 1 2 3 4