The Duties of the Heart
Gate Five: "Dedicating Our Actions to God"
As every honest person knows, each one of us is a waiter darting back and
forth, table to table, filling the orders of many diners. And though most
of us only wish we could be served, too, the true seeker of spiritual
excellence wants to know how to "serve" G-d and G-d alone.
That's the context this gate fits into. It's termed "dedicating your
actions to G-d", as we noted, and what that comes down to, Ibn Pakudah
tells us, is making sure that everything we do is done in the service of
G-d alone. That nothing we do be extraneous to that and certainly not
contrary to it.
But there's another element of his definition that we left aside till now,
which is that that includes everything we do both *"in private and in
public"*. Which is to say that not only are we to dedicate our actions to
G-d, but our thoughts and our very heart and soul as well. That's where the
demands are deepest -- and the results most palpable.
In any event, this gate will explore the ramifications of all that.
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