Da’at Tevunot -- The Knowing Heart
Section 1, Chapter 7
By Rabbi Yaakov Feldman
So, again, the most erroneous ideas a person could have about G-d are that
He’s too transcendent in His Being to interact with the cosmos , and
that He’s beholden to various physical and metaphysical forces,
principles, and values that either outweigh Him or are somehow superior to
Him (even though He Himself instituted and authorized them). But all
that’s wrong. For G-d hasn’t any “deterrents or hindrances whatsoever”, as
Ramchal puts it; “His reign is supreme” and absolute.
Nothing else governs the universe along with Him, for example. He alone is
the source of both good and evil; as it’s said, “I form the light and
create darkness; I make peace and create evil; I G-d do all these things”
(Isaiah 45:7) .
There is no other “ruler or governors, as idolaters have thought” ; G-d
Himself “oversees all of creation personally”. We’re likewise to know
that “nothing occurs in this world that He is opposed to, and nothing
happens by chance or as a consequence of ‘nature’ or ‘fate’”, for
everything is on purpose and on target. As such, G-d alone is the final
arbiter of everything and “decrees what will happen”, inside and out,
above and below. And “nothing can compel Him” to do anything “or thwart
Him” in any way .
While He can acquiesce to humankind’s actions and intentions if He cares
to, He can likewise overlook them altogether and do as He wants, and thus
reward or punish as He deems necessary despite circumstances and apparent
paradox . That in fact has always been our people’s sal vation and
allowed us hope for our ultimate future, for we’ve been taught that G-d
will always abide by the vow He made with our ancestors and will never
abandon His people, and that He will indeed bring on the long awaited
redemption when He sees fit . For “He is the L-rd”, as Ramchal
reiterates, “so He can do that whenever He wants to”.
And no one can oppose G-d, even that person uses the very mechanisms that
G-d set up to challenge Him. For since He allowed for those mechanisms He
can undo them all the same or change the “rules” as He wills .
In point of fact, there’s only one reason why we don’t know this firsthand
and must accept it on faith: because G-d’s sovereignty has been hidden
away from us . But there’ll come a time when G-d will openly display
His absolute sovereignty, His Yichud. For, as we’re taught, it was toward
that end alone that G-d established the world and all of its ways.
Indeed, everything but everything will prove to have played a role in the
great drama of the revelation of G- d’s Yichud in the end. And once it’s
revealed, we’ll be able to understand in retrospect the singular role that
each and every element of the cosmos en toto has played in that reality.
For each thing and every moment will prove to have served as a clue and
solution to the great and dazzling fact of G-d’s absolute sovereignty.
Given that, we can now grasp something of the depth and breadth of the
eventual revelation of G-d’s Yichud. It will entail an infinite and
utterly unearthly series of revelations of the meaning behind and the
processes embodied in this world which will go deeper and deeper, wider
and wider ad infinitum.
What that means to say is that we’ll each come to understand G-d’s ways in
this world on an endlessly more and more profound level. So for example
while we might at first understand how we’d been influenced by our
parents’ actions and how we’d influenced our own children's actions in the
great course of things at first (which is no small matter), we’d then
perhaps come to realize the role our grandparents played on our beings,
and how we’d influenced our own grandchildren’s lives, etc. We might then
transcend that too by understanding our parents’ thoughts and motivations,
as well as our children’s, etc.; then what instigated those motivations,
etc., and so one. And then we’d go past all that to the point where we’d
understand G-d’s role in all that by degrees .
And we’ll also learn that=2 0our having been created imperfect, and our
having been granted a way of perfecting ourselves, of being rewarded, and
of drawing closer to G-d in the process will all prove to be an offshoot
of the phenomenon of the revelation of G-d’s Yichud.
 Which would indicate that He’s thus restricted in a way, when
our point is that nothing can restrict G-d.
 See 1:5:2.
 See 1:5:1.
 See 1:5:3. We’ll learn later on that free will is to be undone
as well (¶ 44).
 See 1:5:4.
 See Deuteronomy 29:1-30-20.
 See 1:5:5.
 This harkens back to the point the Soul made in Ramchal’s
Introduction that while he accepts certain principles of the religion on
faith, he nonetheless doesn’t actually sense them to be true on his own.
Ramchal’s point is that he -- and we -- will indeed sense the truth of all
of them in the end.
 There’s another point to be raised here. We were told early on
(see 1:1:3) that G-d’s whole intention for this world was to manifest His
beneficence here. We’re told at this point, though, that His intention was
to reveal His Yichud, which seems to contradict that. Nonetheless as R’
Friedlander’s said, G-d’s aim is indeed to express beneficence; but the
means of doing that will be the revelation of His Yichud (from Iyyun #8,
where he also points out, among several other central points, that the
Yichud will only be fully revealed in the World to Come as we indicated in
the previous note. But see R’ Shriki’s note 20 where he says that this
will occur on the great Yom HaDin, the Day of Judgment, before the World
Rabbi Yaakov Feldman has translated and commented upon "The Gates of Repentance", "The Path of the Just", and "The Duties of the Heart" (Jason
Aronson Publishers). His works are available in bookstores and in various
locations on the Web.