Understand well that the secret of the descent of the spirit is our generation’s avodah, after the first generation of kibutz galuyos (the ingathering of the exiles). The first generation engaged in the externality of the redemption, gathering the limbs and arranging them one next to the other. Included in this was the preparation of an infrastructure that would allow us to live together – the development of Eretz Yisrael and the practical framework necessary to live within the land; alluded to in the prophecy by the appearance of veins and flesh upon the bones. However, in this stage, the bones are yet separated, and the community is thus fractured into many different sects, with the prevalence of raging disputes. This is all due to the lack of Godly spirit that will appear in the second stage of the redemption to enliven the entire body, unifying its limbs to function as a single organism, bringing with it a spirit of teshuvah and collective purity that will elevate the nation to lofty levels of holiness.

Now, the time has come for the internality of the redemption, the secret of the approach of the spirit, the resting of a collective life-force upon the entire nation. This aligns precisely with what our sages have taught regarding the revelation of the Torah’s secrets at the end of time and the manner in which this will allow us to leave exile amidst divine Mercy. (Zohar, Vol 3, 124b and others.) For the secret of the revelation of the Torah’s mysteries and the secret of serving Hashem in a way of penimiyus are themselves the secret of a light that penetrates each soul with a reminder that it is only a single cell within a complete body, and not its own independent existence – inspiring it to rise to a more elevated level of avodas Hashem, the avodah of the Shechinah – to perceive itself as being a portion and limb of an entire nation and to work, amidst this recognition, in friendship, love, and a deep and awesome unity specifically “for the sake of the unification”, devoid of all ulterior motives.

This is the secret of the great thirst in our generation for the mysteries of the Torah and for the penimiyus of avodas Hashem – proof that the time has come for the birthing of a new reality, the approach of the spirit. As we have seen, this spirit is the soul of penimiyus haTorah, the secret of avodas HaShechinah. Therefore, the goal and the pinnacle of this thirst for penimiyus haTorah is the collective spirit that is appearing within us, giving birth to awesome and lofty levels, as we will discuss in later chapters.

It emerges that the Zohar and the other works of penimiyus haTorah are the spirit of melech haMoshiach, a spirit that enters the bones to bring them into a life of unity as a complete body, alive and flourishing.

To be continued…

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Rav Reuven Sasson
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