The Seven Pillars of Faith

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The Seven Pillars of Faith
by Yitzchok Breiter, translated by Wikisource

`Amud ha Tzaddik/The Pillar of the Tzaddik[edit]

1. The soul of Mashiach/Messiah preceded the world[1], and he is the root of the souls of Israel, and the entire Creation was only created to serve his ends, and "the Tzaddik is the Foundation of the World" (Prov. 10:25).

2. With him, Hashem consulted as He created the world, as it is written: "With whom should I consult and give understanding, and teach the ways of justice?" (Isa. 40:14)

3. He swore to Hashem that he would fix the world.[2]

4. All that transpires in the world — all the incarnations, clarifications, tests, and revelations of faith are through him, as it is written, "He is faithful in My house" (Num. 12:7).[3]

5. Hashem gave him full dominion and kingship, as it is said, "The Tzaddik rules with the fear of G-d." (II Sam. 23:3)

6. He is the Heavenly Court.

7. He is the revelation of the Hand of Hashem — that is to say, he reveals Divine Providence, both on the spiritual and material planes.

8. He is the revelation of prayer, as it is written, "I am prayer" (Ps. 109:4).

9. He is the chariot for the Shekhina.

10. He is Holiness.

11. He is the life of the entire world.

12. All service of Hashem rises upward through him.

13. All thoughts of repentance come from him.[4]

14. Through a person's drawing close to the True Tzaddik — that is, through understanding the above concepts, and through following his holy advice — the person draws upon himself sparks from the light of the Tzaddik — each according to his level. Even if the person is very far from holiness, nevertheless, by drawing close to the True Tzaddik, he at least will come to see and know how far he is from truth and righteousness, and from the proper ways of justice, and how he is in fact immersed in the opposite, in order that he should long for truth, and pray about it, without any despair or sadness. For if he will know that Hashem also calls to him — for he is precious in Hashem's eyes — and so on higher and higher, each one according to his unique quality, and according to his closeness to the True Tzaddik, he merits to draw upon himself the holiness of the Tzaddik, to walk in his ways, and to know that everything is in the hands of Hashem. And to pray for this always, Amen.

15. Fragments of the soul of the Tzaddik are within all creatures, and especially in the People of Hashem, and to a greater degree, in all the True Tzaddikim.

16. The Way of Truth was renewed in the world five times, and they are as follows:

  1. Moshe Rabbeinu
  2. Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai
  3. Rabbi Yitzchak Luria, the Ari
  4. Rabbi Yisrael Ba'al Shem Tov
  5. "Nachal Novea Mekor Chokhmah/The flowing stream, source of wisdom" (Prov. 18:4) is Rabbi NaChMaN. And from him until Mashiach, there will be no other renewals.

17. In every place in Likutey Moharan that "the Tzaddik" is mentioned, it all refers to these five.

18. There was an especially powerful revelation of the prayer of the soul of Mashiach in King David.

19. It is not for a person to attempt to become the Tzaddik, and he must not suppose that any one who wants to seize this crown may do so. For this is the matter of mefursamei shel sheker/Leaders of Falsehood, as discussed in Likutey Moharan. Rather, everyone needs to accept from this Tzaddik who has revealed himself in every few generations, which is the matter of the sparks of Mashiach, and the preparation for the Redemption. Everyone needs to be acquainted with this Tzaddik. For if one does not know him in this incarnation, he will have to return in another, until he does know him. Because of this, we have waited so long for the Redemption, and it was in relation to this that the Rabbis said "Find yourself a Rabbi, and acquire a friend" (Avot 1:6) — that together, they will accept from this Rabbi. Also, the saying "All who say a word of Torah in the name of the Rabbi who said it, brings Redemption to the world" — that is to say, that he should come to know from whom is drawn all the words, and through this he hastens the Redemption of the world and of his own soul.

20. A novelty such as the Nachal Novea Mekor Chokhmah was never before in the world. For he prepared vessels for our Righteous Mashiach, and the Mashiach will battle with them against the forces of evil, to repair the world.

Notes[edit]

  1. Pesachim 54a
  2. Tikuney Zohar 69, 111b; Zohar III:216a
  3. Tikuney Zohar 69, 112a
  4. Chayei Moharan 279