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The Path of the Just

Chapter 25 (Part 3)

Ramchal ends this next-to-last chapter with a refreshingly honest though saddening perspective on all this. Being constantly aware of G-d’s presence and sensing His being all around us “is very unnatural to us,” he says, “because of the limited, this-worldly nature of our senses”. That’s to say that since we depend so very much on what we see, hear, touch, smell, and taste as our arbiters of reality, it stands to reason that G-d and the whole of His upper realm is beyond our scope, and thus off our “radar screen”.

What then will foster it and -- even more so -- will imprint it upon our beings so that we could live with the knowledge that G-d’s being infuses the universe and interacts with it? “It only comes with study”, Ramchal responds, with Torah study that is.

But he’s not referring to the sort of Torah study that comes to simply taking in data and relying on logical proofs. The kind of Torah study he’s referring to is the sort that somehow allows the ideas implanted in the Torah to settle deeply into the bones, that corroborates our deeper sense of G-d’s reality, and that affirms what the heart and soul already know. And it “involves reflecting and meditating upon” what you’d have garnered by that sort of Torah study “at all times-- when you’re (otherwise) relaxing, (as well as when you’re) traveling, lying down, and awakening”.

Only then will “the veracity of this-- that the Divine presence is ever-present, and that we stand before G-d each and every moment-- be fixed in your mind. Only then can you truly fear and revere G-d”.


Text Copyright © 2010 by Rabbi Yaakov Feldman and

Rabbi Feldman's new book, Bachya Ibn Pakuda's The Duties of the Heart, is now available! Order Now



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