DOT... LETTER... WORD...
by Rav Kook
At times, I worry that something that comes into my mind at present is not something new, and everyone already knows it, and I myself have contemplated it, and perhaps also wrote about it.
And as a result the new insight grows cheapened, and not appreciated properly as spiritual pearls that come from the drops of the garden of Eden of the soul.
In order to protect ourselves against this failing, we must know that it is not possible that any idea that blossoms in the soul is exactly equal to an idea that already blossomed in the past. The buds are different in their character.
In the physical world too, nothing is literally the same as its equivalent, and so how much more in the spiritual world.
And so at every time and moment that a new thought flashes into an idea, we must appreciate it and know that this is a new vision, which never before appeared in the world, and receive it joyfully, with humility and holiness, with might and harmony and an abundance of peace.
Chadarav, p. 73
by Rav Kook
Who will hold me back? Why do I not reveal in writing all of my fiery thoughts, all of the most hidden thoughts of my spirit?
Who is it that prevents me, who imprisons my thought within its husk, and does not allow it to emerge into the air of the world?
Who is it that chokes the phenomena of the spiritual life, and does not allow them to reveal themselves in all the beauty of the wealth of colors of their lights?
My spiritual powers within me cry out in their great sorrow.
They feel as though they are prisoners sitting in jail.
And these impoverished prisoners complain that they are imprisoned without justice and without righteousness.
They are correct, and honesty and justice are on their side. They speak of breaking out by force, of breaking down the walls of their imprisonment, of emerging into the freedom forever, of singing aloud their great, holy, joyful tune, filled with the power of life, a life of holiness and purity, a life of beauty, a life of the delight of all worlds, a life of the majesty of Hashem, in Whom they will delight with all good.
Oh when, when will their redemption come? When, when, will I speak and write all that my heart feels?
“I will speak and I will have comfort.” “My mouth will speak the praises of Hashem.”
And the mouth will speak all that the heart thinks, and the pen will express all that is hidden in the depth of thought, and from darkness will emerge light, light, light, light, “Hashem is my Light and my salvation, whom shall I fear?” “Hashem is my light.”
Chadarav, pp. 70-71
by Rav Kook
We must broaden thought a great deal: in length, in breadth, in depth, in height, in how it spreads and in size—so that it will penetrate deeply, in detail, in an individual way and in detail, in seeking and in miniature, to the very thinnest of threads.
And we travel from the great to the tiny and from the tiny to the great; from the particular to the general and from the general to the particular, and then again.
We soar from the highest emanation, from the ideal, to the corporeal, to the physical, to the realm of action, and we return and rise from the realm of deed to the highest emanation, to the ideal.
And we are involved constantly with movement filled with life, moving outward and inward, rising and descending.
And thus we live an ecstatic life, a holy life, in the glory of the name of Hashem.
We yearn to pronounce the Name, we desire to explicate the supernal light, we are filled with a supernal thirst slaked with delights to fill the mouth with the praise of the God of gods.
And out of an abundance of pure awe, out of an intensity of a trembling of holiness, we return to the silence.
And we engage in holy unifications, supernal unifications, with song, with holiness, with poetry, with gaiety, with purity, with quivering, with shaking with delight.
And all of my bones will sing, and the kingship of heaven will be elevated, and the supernal honor will be uplifted, and my spirit will stride forward mightily, and I am filled with praise and song, and heaven and hear rejoice in my joy, and all judgments are mitigated, and seraphim and erelim-angels sing together with me, and the ministering angels gather as in the musical entertainments of groom and bride, and everything expresses glory.
“Blessed is the glory of God from His place.” Blessed is He and blessed is His great name, hidden from all living beings, and concealed from all existence, and over everything, may He be exalted and uplifted, forever.
Chadarav, p. 55
by Rav Kook
Will I desist from seeking the source of freedom, the source of freedom of my self and the source of freedom of the entire world?
I will not desist,I will not be indolent, and I will not be intimidated by anything frightening and by anything disturbing.
The foundation of the redemption and supernal freedom must reveal itself.
And if it is cloaked in the thickness of fog, in all leaden clouds, then I will pursue the light of the sun, which shines above the clouds, and I will surely attain it. And in the rays of its light, there will be light for me and light for the world.
Chadarav, p. 47
I ask myself:
Am I allowed to silence the joy of my soul, the full downpour of the supernal yearning, the slaking of the thirst of the gaze filled with holy radiance, for the sake of pressing requests of minor matters, of actions in which I do not feel the supernal goal of my ideals, for the sake of the pressures of intellectual learning—which, whatever the causes that have brought me to this, do not fill and slake my spirit?
What will I do? How will I prepare my way?
How will I perform my inner obligation for myself, for my spirit inside me, for my internal being?
For me, this is the question of questions,
Oh, how much I need a solution!
Even all who draw up waters in buckets cannot explain this secret to me!
Only from the might of soulful strength, which is fitting to break forth from within my inner being in the core of my core, only from this cloaked power will come in its revelation the clear solution to this soulful world-question.
Chadarav, p. 37
by Rav Kook
A person only attains stature from within himself, from his inner, essential core, and not from what comes to him from outside, because circumstantial occurrences do not bring about true happiness.
But the Torah and the commandments are the core of happiness, yet they come to a person from outside himself.
However, when we contemplate, we see that every person attains from the Torah and the commandments only that which is hidden in his inner being.
Moreover, in the totality of things, a person envelops all being, and the Torah and the commandments, which are the core of the laws of being, are incorporated in him. And when he clings to them, he clings to his core.
And when, through them, he comes to cling to the Divine, he certainly finds his core, because our entire core is only in the source of our being—in God, the Source of all existence—because in truth, in the essence of truth, we truly exist only in Him, and outside of Him we are only an assemblage of circumstantiality.
“[With] my soul, I have yearned for You at night, indeed, [with] my spirit within me I seek You” (Isaiah 26:9).
Chadarav, pp. 20-21
Yaacov David Shulman
New! Jewish Spiritual Growth: The Step-to-Step Guide of a Hasidic Master