Thursday, April 10, 2008

The Merciful One Wants the Heart!

W hen the time came to leave Mitzrayim, the Jewish people were lacking the merit needed to survive makas bechoros and earn the exodus. Rav Tzadok HaKohen zt”l explains that Hashem responded by providing korban Pesach. It repairs all defilement of the body at its root—the sin of eating from the ,Eitz Hada'as. One experiences a revelation of the highest levels of G-dliness. This is provided the person had first done the necessary groundwork to sanctify his body through bris milah. This was the greatness of the first korban Pesach, that even the bodies of essentially unworthy people could be so purified and prepared for kedushah. This can be reached every time the korban is brought in the future. Even today, when we are unable to bring the actual offering, we can still draw these levels down to us by yearning to bring it with our whole heart!- The Merciful One wants what is in our hearts!
During the time of the Ariza”l, a man who had escaped the Inquisition by hiding his Judaism returned to the fold and was taught about the lechem hapanim. In his great simplicity, the fellow immediately went and baked twelve loaves of bread in the shape of the offering and placed it before the ark in the synagogue. The shammash found the breads, and took the unexpected bounty home for himself. This went on for some time, with the man believing that the bread was “accepted from Above.”
When the Rabbi heard the story, he immediately put a stop to the charade, and insisted that the ba’al teshuvah stop bringing the loaves. Just as the words left his mouth, a messenger arrived for the Rabbi from the Ariza”l bearing a letter: “Your fate has already been decided, and the time has come for you to leave the world. By what right did you disrupt the heartfelt offering of this simple man that brought such pleasure to HaKadosh Boruch Hu, as if it was the actual lechem hapanim?!” The Merciful One wants the heart!

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

shalom, where can i find the teaching from Rav Tzadok that you are referring to? thank you so much-

Micha Golshevsky said...

Shalom uveracha,
The teaching is part of a very long piece which works out basically all the mitzvos of the Seder. It is from Machshavas Charutz, #9. I know it's a long section but I own the old set of Rav Tzaddok's writings, so if you have the newer one I can only tell you that it's about half way through #9. The most relevant part starts, "Uv'yitzias mitzrayim huh hatschalas habirurim d'yisrael..."
If you have the older se, the teaching is on page 71-72 with 67-68.
Hatslochah finding it; it's well worth the effort!