The Duties of the Heart
Gate Ten: "Loving G-d Wholeheartedly”
"Very many things prevent us from loving G–d" we're warned," including --
though not limited to -- our not meeting the requirements for it we'd
For there's something else that foils the dream of loving G-d "so very
mightily and powerfully that (your) soul so affixes itself to the love of
Him that (you're) as absorbed in Him and (are) as love-sick (for Him) as
someone who ... couldn't stop thinking of a woman (he was) in love with"
(Maimonides, Hilchot Teshuvah 10:3).
What ultimately prevents us from loving Him so are any aversions we might
have "to those who (themselves) love Him" and any respect we'd have "for
those who hate Him", as Ibn Pakudah describes it. That's to say that if we
either admire wrongdoers for whatever reason, or somehow or another are
repelled by people who serve Him well and love Him truly, then we're
unlikely to love G-d Himself, who's displeased with wrong and loves
But don't minimize how real those feelings are. For as the sensitive soul
knows only too well, there are times when something deep in the untoward
part of our beings is somehow bothered by good people for one small reason
or another and all but enamored with bad ones. Those who want nothing
better than to love G-d would root that out of their systems and realize
that -- despite any minor failings -- those who love G-d should be our
heroes, and that we should deplore those who "hate" (better said, dismiss
or ignore) Him.
Text Copyright © 2005 by Rabbi Yaakov Feldman and Torah.org