Monthly Archives: June 2015

Derech Hashem 1:5:9

There are very many degrees of evil and what they bring about [1], but in general there are four and they’re termed “impurity” [2], “darkness” [3], “filth” [4], “the profane” [5] and the like. Contrarily, what results from G-d’s “face” shining onto something is generally termed “holiness” [6], “purity” [7], “light”, “blessing”, and the like [8].

When we take their subcategories into account we can then catch sight of G-d’s governance of the world.


  1. … when G-d turns His “face” away.
  2. See 4:2:6-7 and 4:6:2-3 below.
  3. See Klallei Pitchei Chochma v’Da’at 9.
  4. See Da’at Tevunot 118.
  5. See Da’at Tevunot 78, Klallei Ma’amar HaChochma 14, and 4:4;5, 4:5:2, 4:7:2 below.

These terms allude to the four “shells” the Kabbalists say obstruct the pure “fruit” that is closeness to G-d. They’re derived from the four terms cited in the verse that reads, “a tempest was coming from the north, a huge cloud and a flaming fire, with a brightness around it” (Ezekiel 1:4).

  1. See Ma’amar HaChochma (“Mah M’lamedet Chochmat HaEmet“), Ma’amar HaIkurim {“B’Torah U’b’Mitzvot“, and Messillat Yesharim Ch. 26.
  2. See Messilat Yesharim Ch. 16 and 4:3:1 below.
  3. Those are how such things are termed and function on the large scale; but it’s hard to see their effects in the world as we experience it. On the other hand, …


(c) 2015 Rabbi Yaakov Feldman

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