Vol 19.22 - Ellul 2              Spanish French Audio  Video

Hebrew Text:

Page162   Page163   Page164  

Or HaTorah (?)
Likkutei Levi Yitzchak     Likkutei Levi Yitzchak

(5748) The name "Elul" and its hints according to Or HaTorah ( Re'eh pg 797)
and Likkutei Levi Yitzchak (Iggrot pg. 436 ff)


 The month of Elul, as is known, unites the past and coming year. Therefore the Avodah of Elul is twofold:

1. An honest accounting of the deeds of the past year, doing Teshuvah on the improper deeds and though this, correcting and completing the previous (year's deeds) 
2. Preparing for the coming year through adopting good resolutions etc. And through this ensuring a (ksivah v'chasima Tovah) good and sweet year
Since the names of the months (Nisan, Iyar etc.) are names which Torah uses,
                (so much so, that many of them - including the name Elul - are even cited in the Written Torah)
it is understood that they convey the innermost concept of the month.
And so it is in our case. The two aforementioned Avodahs of this month are alluded to in the name Elul.
Therefore, we find among the "hints" in the word "Elul" that the word can be split into two parts (as will be explained on Par. 2), which infers that these two parts fit with the aforementioned Avodahs.
2. There are among the "hints" in "Elul":
1. The explanation of the Tzemach Tzedek that Elul is comprised of two words "Lo (alef-not)" and "Lo (vav-him)".
a. "Lo (alef-not)" refers to Keter which is above Seder Hishtalshelus
Note: Seder Hishtalshelus means the "order of development" or "order of evolution" and so literally means "the chain-like process" of Creation.
Keter: (lit. “crown”) refers to  the sublime level of Divine emanation which transcends the set of the ten Sefirot; in man’s spiritual personality it is the source of the corresponding “superconscious” faculties of pleasure and will.
       b. And "Lo (vav-him)"refers to "Ze'er Anpin", Hishtalshelus
[This is explained in the aspect of (the verse): "In all their trouble (Lo Tzar), He is afflicted. Isa. 63:9)" where the "ktiv" is "Lo (alef-not)" and the "Kri" is "Lo (vav-him)"
Note: The RaMaK (R. Moshe Cordovero) in his sefer Tomer Devorahwrites the following: Behold, G-d interacts with the Jewish people in this manner, saying, "How Can I Deal badly with Israel? After all they are My Relatives. I have a She'eir Basar (blood relationship) with them. For she [[the people of Israel] is the spouse of the Holy One Blessed Be He, and He refers to her as "My Daughter", "My Sister", "My Mother" (see Shir HaShirim Rabba 3:2; Tehillim 45:11; Song of Songs 5:2; Yeshayahu 51:4). And what can be said? For were I to Punish them, behold I Feel the pain, as it is said, (Yeshayahu 63:9) BeChol Tzoratam Lo Tzar --- the word Lo is written with an Alef (i.e., Lamed Alef) to teach that the pain experienced by the Jewish people reaches up to LePeleh Elyon (Peleh is Aleph spelled backwards!) and Lo is read as if there is a Vav (i.e., Lamed Vav), and it is written (Shoftim 10:16) "And His Soul was shortened due to the travail of the Jewish people," because He Cannot Bear their pain and disparagement because they are the remnant of His Heritage."
Note: Kri/Ktiv: Massoretic text/pronunciation variations which are read differently from the way that they are spelled in the text. (This phenomenon occurs roughly thirteen hundred times in the Tanach)
1.       "Lo (alef-not) Tzar" is from the perspective of Keter which is higher than Hishtalshelus, where the aspects and status of creations are insignificant (ein tofeis makom). That is why it spelled with an Aleph.
2.       And "Lo (vav-him) Tzar" is from the perspective of "Ze'er Anpin"- Hishtalshelus where the aspects and status of creations are significant]
The connection between the two aspects - to the month of Elul is:
In the month of Elul, the Thirteen Attributes of Mercy illuminate, which are higher than Hishtalshelus -"Lo (alef-not)". But the aura from the Thirteen Attributes of Mercy is in a manner that is drawn down into Hishtalshelus (into Pnimiyut) - (which is symbolized by) "Lo (vav-him)"
2.       The explanation of my father that the name Elul is comprised of the word "Oh = or (alef-vav)" and two (letter) Lameds.
1.       "Oh = or (alef-vav)" refers to (the sefira of) Malchut ("Kingdom") (as is explained in Zohar) and the two letters "alef-vav" allude to the two main levels of Malchut. The Alef - refers to Keter of Malchut ("exaltedness") and the "vav" - Da'at (comprehension) of Malchut
2.       The two Lameds refer to the "thirty virtues" with which sovereignty is acquired (Avot 6:5). Avot Chap 6
And since that which the "sovereignty is acquired with thirty virtues" must enclothe themselves with the two aforementioned levels of Malchut, therefore there is both a Lamed after the Alef , and also after the vav
And the connection from this aspect to the month of Elul is:
The destruction of the Temple in the month of Av (mainly) affects the Sefirah of Malchut. And in the days of favor (yemei ratzon) of the month of Elul (which come directly after the month of Av) we begin the building of Malchut
3. The connection between the explanation of my father and the explanation of the Tzemach Tzedek is:
[Not just that both explanations explain that the Alef refers to Keter which is higher than hishtalshelus, and that the Vav refers to drawing down into Pnimiyut
                Ze'er Anpin - the explanation of the Tzemach Tzedek
or            Da'at           - which is the "key that includes six"
Note: In the Zohar, this level of da'at is referred to as "the key that includes six." The "key" of da'at opens all six chambers (attributes) of the heart and fills them with lifeforce. Each of these six chambers, when filled with da'at, is referred to as a particular dei'ah ("attitude," from the root of da'at) of the soul.(http://www.inner.org/sefirot/sefdaat.htm)
But also regarding the words "Lo (alef-not)"and "Lo (vav-him)" which are translated in the explanation of the Tzemach Tzedek.
The reason why the two primary levels of Malchut are the "Crown of Sovereignty" (Keter Malchut) and "Comprehension of Sovereignty" (Daat d'Malchut) is explained by my father:
"first and foremost one must have the desire (oneg) and will (ratzon) in the aspect of Malchut - which is "Keter Malchut" ( as is known that Keter is desire (oneg) and will (ratzon))
Since, however, there "cannot be a king without a people" (ein melech blo am), the king must lower (contract) himself and deal with the people, which is the level of Daat d'Malchut
The difference between these two levels is :
From the perspective of "the desire and will to rule", only the king is completely removed from the people. There is felt his greatness and exaltedness. Therefore in this (level) people are insignificant.
However, at the level of Daat d'Malchut, which is the how the king deals with the people and rules them (through the royal edicts etc) – the conduct of the people affects him (the king)
And this is the connection between the explanation of my father with the explanation of the Tzemach Tzedek (that the word Elul is "Lo (alef-not)" and “Lo (vav-him)")
At the level of Keter of Malchut, where the actions of the creations (“tachtonim”) are insignificant, the [[verse can be explained] "I n all their trouble (("Lo (alef-not)" Tzar), He is not afflicted.
However, at the level of Daat d'Malchut – the actions of created beings are significant and the [verse can be explained] "In all their trouble (("Lo (vav-him)" Tzar), He is afflicted.
4. Corresponding to the two aforementioned aspects in Elul, there are, in general, the two types of Avodah of the month of Elul:
1. The rectification of the previous (year's deeds) 
2. Preparing for the coming year.
The main Avodah of Rosh Hashanah is to effect the “that you may declare Me King over you", the “coronation” of G-d as our King, to awaken the essence of exaltedness (“hitnasut”), [at its core] where the actions of created beings have no affect (ein tofeis makom), as explained above.
And this is the reason why we say: “He chooses our heritage for us [, the glory of Jacob whom He loves eternally. Ps 47:5]”. Because the sovereignty (“tamlichuni) over Yiden is
(not due to their Avodah in Torah and Mitzvot, but rather)
because of the Free-Choice (Bechira Chofshit) of G-d (Above). It is because the souls of Yisroel are rooted in [G-d’s] Essence - much higher than the source of Torah and Mitzvot
[which is why G-d says that “I cannot exchange them with another nation”, without regard to their standing in the service of Torah and Mitzvot]
And this is accomplished, by Yiden, when they awaken within themselves the innermost Bittul which stems from the essence of the soul
However the rectification of the previous (year's deeds)   is by making an honest accounting of one’s Avodah of Torah and Mitzvot – examining how diligently one followed the edicts of the King – for this is connected to the level of Malchut the way it is manifested in conjunction with people.
5. Since “Elul” is (actually) one word, it is understood that the Lo (alef-not)" and "Lo (vav-him)" of Elul 
(are not separate things, but rather , they)
are connected, as the Tzemach Tzedek phrases it: “ In Elul the Lo (alef-not)" and "Lo (vav-him)" are connected
The explanation is:
The honest accounting of the past year(‘s deeds) – the "Lo (vav-him)" of Elul - is connected with Teshuvah on the negative deeds - and their rectification. And the forgiveness and atonement on the negative deeds come from the Thirteen Attributes of Mercy which are higher than Hishtalshelus – the "Lo (alef-not)" - of Elul. For specifically, since at that level, the actions of created beings have no effect, forgiveness and atonement can be drawn down for the sins and shortcomings of created beings (and) in (their) Avodah in Torah and Mitzvot
And also on the other hand – the intention of the coronation of G-d as King (“tamlichuni Aleichem”) of Rosh Hashanah, which this is the level of Malchut, where the people are insignificant (The "Lo (alef-not)", as above), is to bring one to the Avodah of Torah and Mitzvot, to completely observe the edicts of the King ("Lo (vav-him)"
Which through this, one accomplishes that the “He chooses our heritage for us” (Yivchar Lanu) on Rosh Hashanah does not remain higher than Hishtalshelus ("Lo (alef-not)") but rather, that it is revealed below ("Lo (vav-him)" with a k'siva vChasimah Tovah l'shana Tova umesuka for each and every person of Yisroel in revealed and visible good (bTov HaNirah veHaNigleh), below ten handbreadths ( l’mata mAsara tefachim - in the lowest levels of physicality ).
M’Sichas Shabbat Parshat Re’eh 5733

 Date Delivered:   Reviewer:       
Date Modified:    Date Reviewed: