Tikunei haZohar

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Tikunei haZohar (תקוני הזהר, lit. "Rectifications of the Zohar"), also known as the Tikunim (תקונים), is a main text of the Kabbalah. It is a separate appendix to the Zohar consisting of seventy commentaries on the opening word of the Torah, Bereishit (בראשית), in a style of Kabbalistic Midrash. Containing deep secret teachings of Torah, stirring dialogues and fervent prayers, the explicit and apparent theme and intention of Tikunei haZohar is to repair and support the Shekhinah or Malkhut — hence its name, "Repairs of the Zohar" — and to bring on the Redemption and conclude the Exile.

Tikunei haZohar was printed first in Mantua in Hebrew year 5318 (1558 CE). Later editions include the ones printed in Constantinople in 5479 and 5500 (1719 and 1740 CE). After the latter Constantinople edition, pages referred to in Tikunei haZohar are usually according to that edition.[1]

Language and authorship[edit]

Tikunei haZohar is almost entirely in Aramaic, except for quotations from Tanakh that are used in building the lessons. The Aramaic of Tikunei haZohar differs somewhat from the Aramaic of the Talmud, and from the Aramaic of the rest of the Zohar.

By Tikunei haZohar's own account, the book was composed by Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai and his son Rabbi Elazar (see the story of their hiding in the cave, below), with contribution from the soul of Ra`aya Meheimna (The Faithful Shepherd, i.e. Moshe) and from Eliyahu, of blessed memory; and with help from the souls of Tzadikim, headed by the soul of Adam haRishon and several Sabbas ("Elders") who came from Gan Eden to reveal new secrets of the Torah to Rabbi Shimon and his "Chevraya Kadisha" ("Holy Friends"). This accords with the text of Tikunei haZohar having a somewhat different a dialect from—and much less stylistic variation than—the rest of the Zohar, which according to tradition was compiled by Rabbi Shimon but includes earlier sources and contains additions by later generations.

Tikunei haZohar contains some additions from later Kabbalists, at least in the introductions. For example, in the Introduction, p. 1a, Rabbi Shalom Buzaglo comments on an annotation inserted by the Arizal (see below).

The Zohar Chadash (parashat ki tavo, daf 73a) states that because no human knew the hiding place of Rabbi Shimon and his son, the Chevraya Kadisha would send notes to Rabbi Shimon with their questions by means of a dove, and he would reply to them the same way, via the dove. Rabbi Shimon was distressed that there was nobody to reveal the secrets of the Torah to the Chevraya Kadisha, and therefore when he went out from the cave he began to reveal secrets of the Torah to them, part of which is the book Tikunei haZohar.[2]

A translation into Hebrew of Tikunei haZohar and of the Zohar itself is the work Matok miDvash (מתוק מדבש) by the Jerusalem kabbalist Rabbi Daniel Frisch (1935–2005). It is written in common language, with simple explanations, in order to make the book accessible to a wider audience. It appears printed in some editions alongside or below the Zohar.

Structure, Composition, and Topics[edit]

There are two introductions. The first introduction, pages 1a-16b, tells how the book developed after Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai and his son fled from the Romans and hid in a cave; describes the Ten Sefirot according to their colors; tells the loftiness of the Tzadikim; gives some explanations of the seventy Tikkunim; and also tells eleven additional tikkunim:

Rabbi Shimon went and fled to the wilderness of Lod and hid in a special cave; he and Rabbi Elazar his son. A miracle occurred: A special carob tree [chad charuva] emerged for them, and a special spring of water. They ate from that carob and drank from that water. Eliyahu, whose memory should bring goodness, would come to them each day, at two periods, and teach them, and no human knew of this, etc. -- so it is written in Zohar Chadash, parashat Tavo. And this is called Tikunei haZohar, which are seventy faces of the Torah which Rabbi Shimon explained on the word "Bereishit" from the secrets of the Torah.

Arise, Rabbi Shimon, and open with words before the Shekhinah (Divine Presence)! [So did the Arizal annotate, that Moshe Rabbeinu a"h said to him thus, for the masters of Kabbalah make a dwelling for the Shekhinah (Kisse Melekh), as it says later in this Introduction, that the banim/sons [fledged birds]/builders [of Deut. 22:6] are those who master Kabbalah [whereas the eggs are those who master the written Torah, and the chicks are those who masters the Mishnah]. That is, they make a dwelling for the mother, the bird, which is the Shekhinah, and because of the sons she will not be exiled, as it is written, "lo-tikach ha'em, `al-habanim/the mother shall not be taken, on account of the sons."] He opened and said (Dan. 12:3), "Vehamaskilim yaz'hiru kezohar haraki`a/And the enlightened ones will shine as the shining of the skies..." [Rabbi Meir said:] And the "enlightened ones" are Rabbi Shimon and his friends. [Rabbi Shimon explained in response:] "Yaz'hiru/They will shine" -- when they gathered to make this book, permission was given to them and to Eliyahu [to be] with them, and to all the souls of the yeshivot to descend among them, and to all the angels [who come] in concealment and by way of the intellect. And above all, permission was given to all the holy names, and to all the Havayah's (Tetragrammatons), and to all the [Divine] appellations, to reveal concealed secrets to them -- each Name according to its level; and permission was given to the Ten Sefirot to reveal concealed secrets to them, for which, permission to reveal to them had not been given until the generation of the king Mashiach comes. "As the shining of the skies" -- which includes all colors: [The Sefirot are described:] Shining that is concealed and hidden [Keter], shining that is bright in the skies [Chokhmah], shining that casts sparks and shines with a pale light like lightning to the eyes [Binah], shining that shines white like the moon [Chesed], shining that shines red like Mars [Gevurah], shining that shines with pale light that includes yellow like the sun [Tiferet], shining that is pale [pink] like Mercury [Netzach], shining that includes white and red [Hod] , shining that shines to all sides, like one who strikes with a hammer and casts sparking chips to all sides [Yesod] -- thus from this shining, several souls shine forth, which all shine in the skies.

And these souls of those enlightened ones, who have in themselves intellect to know the secrets of their Master, are all inscribed and pictured in the Malkhut/kingship of the skies like stars that shine in the skies. This is, "yaz'hiru kezohar haraki`a;" just as with the skies, the souls of the enlightened shine like the stars of the sky, so too do they shine in the Throne. They all fly down from the sky -- and this is Tzadik chai `olamim/The Righteous, who revives the worlds, from which the souls of the tzadikim fly down and shine in the moon. And regarding this is it is written (Gen. 1:17), "Va'yiten otam Elohim baraki`a hashamayim laha'ir `al ha'aretz/And God put them in the sky of the heavens, to shine down on the earth."

It goes on to discuss more concepts regarding the book, interspersed with prayers.

The second introduction, pages 17a-17b, contains a similar account of the fleeing to the cave, etc., followed by Patach Eliyahu. Patach Eliyahu is Eliyahu's meditative prayer which contains foundations of Kabbalah, namely, that Hashem is one and indivisible, Creator of all, beyond comprehension, but Who reveals Himself to us by the Torah and the Kabbalah and conducts the world by orders such as the ten Sefirot, which correspond to the human form—though He Himself has no body or form. Eliyahu concludes his prayer, saying to Rabbi Shimon, "Arise, Rabbi Shimon, and let words of novellae be revealed by you, for, behold, you have permission to reveal hidden secrets, through you; such permission to reveal has not been given to any human until now." Patach Eliyahu is found in the daily liturgy of Sefardic Jews, and in the daily or weekly liturgy of various Chasidim. Tiqqunei ha-Zohar, 17a-b, Petaḥ Eliyahu in full:

Elijah opened and said, 'Master of the worlds! You are One—but not in counting. You are higher than the high, concealed from the concealed. No thought grasps You at all. It is You who generated ten תִקוּנִים (tiqqunim), adornments—called by us the ten sefirot—by which concealed, unrevealed worlds are conducted, and revealed worlds. In them You conceal Yourself from human beings, while You are the One who binds and unites them. Since You are within, whoever separates one of these ten from another—it is as if he divided You.

These ten sefirot proceed in order: one long, one short, one in between. It is You who conducts them, and no one conducts You—neither above nor below nor in any direction. You have prepared garments for them, from which souls fly to human beings. You have prepared various bodies for them—called bodies in contrast to the garments covering them. These bodies are named according to this arrangement: Ḥesed, the right arm; Gevurah, the left arm; Tif’eret, the trunk of the body, the sign of the holy covenant; Malkhut, the mouth—we call Her oral Torah. Ḥokhmah is the brain, inner thought. Binah is the heartmind, through which the [human] heartmind understands. About these two it is written, Things hidden are for YHWH our God (Deuteronomy 29:28). The highest crown is, Keter Elyon, it is the royal crown, of which it says, Declaring the end from the beginning (Isaiah 46:10), and it is the skull [lit., housing of tefillin], inside of which is: יוד הא ואו הא (Yod, He, Vav, He), path of Atsilut (Emanation), sap of the tree, spreading through its arms and branches—like water drenching a tree, which then flourishes.

Master of the worlds! You are the Cause of causes, who drenches the tree with that flow—a flow that is like a soul for the body, life for the body. In You there is neither likeness nor image of anything within or without. You created heavens and earth, bringing forth sun, moon, stars, and constellations. And on earth: trees, grass, the Garden of Eden, animals, birds, fish, and human beings. So that the beyond might be known—how above and below conduct themselves and how they become known.

About You, no one know anything. Apart from you, there is no union above or below. You are known as Lord of all. Every one of the sefirot has a name that is known, by which angels are called, but You have no known name, for You pervade all names; You are the fulness of them all. When You disappear from them, all those names are left like a body without a soul.

You are wise—not with a known wisdom. You understand—not with known understanding. You have no known place—just making known Your power and strength to human beings, showing them how the world is conducted by justice and compassion, according to human action. Law is Gevurah. Judgment is the middle pillar. Righteousness is the holy Malkhut. The scales of Righteousness are two pillars of truth, the ruling of righteousness is the sign of the covenant. Each one shows Your mastery over the world. But actually You have no known צֶדֶק (tsedeq), justice, which is דִין (din), law, or מִּשְׁפָּט (mishpat), judgment, which is רַחֲמִים (raḥamim), compassion, nor any quality at all.'

Rise Rabbi Shim’on fashion new words with your hands, because you have permission to reveal hidden mysteries which have not been revealed by another until now.

As an example of some of the permutations of בראשית/Bereishit which underlie the seventy Tikunim, Tikun #1 begins by explaining "בראשית" as "ב' ראשית," (lit., beit [is] the "heading"), as in, "This is the gate to Hashem; the righteous shall enter into it "(Ps. 118:2); the righteous "have permission to enter in it [i.e. the Torah, Hashem's treasury], but the others who are not righteous are rejected from it." Tikun #2 explains "בראשית" as containing "יראת" (reverence [of]) and "שב" (return; repent); "the allusion is to return with reverence [of God]; without reverence, there can be no wisdom..." Tikun #3 mentions that "בראשית" contains "ברית אש/brit esh/Covenant [of] fire"—whoever guards the Covenant (i.e. circumcision, family purity and related matters) is saved from the fire of hell; and whoever is involved in Torah and guards the Covenant is called an "adam/man" fit to "sit" in the house (Isa. 44:13) and "see" the "ראש בית/rosh bayit/Head of the House," that is, the King, Hashem.

Certain passages of Tiqqunei ha-Zohar quote from the body of the Zohar, interpreting and developing it:

At the head of potency of the King… A spark of impenetrable darkness (Zohar 1:15a)—when it surveyed its drawing out, there came forth from this point a hidden קַו (qav), cord. This thought was just like this: ם (mem)—first it was the closed ם (mem) and when the קַו (qav), cord, which was the ו (vav), extended from the מִדָה (middah), measure, it opened and was made into ב (bet). This is בְּרֵאשִׁית (bereshit), the רֵאשִׁית (reshit), point, in the ב (bet) [palace], and when it is the closed ם (mem), it is the great ם (mem) as in לםרבה (Lmrbh), in token of, abundant authority (Isaiah 9:6) and it was made into a עִזְקָא (izqa), ring [alt., edition: לְםַרְבֵּה (Le-marbeh), in token of... (Isaiah 9:6 according to the Masoretic vocalization), is numerically equivalent to עֵזֶר (ezer), sustainer (Genesis 2:18), and זֶרַע (zera), seed. In that palace they plant seeds according to its תִקוּן (tiqqun). הַמִּשְׂרָה (Ha-misrah), abundant authority (ibid.) is numerically equivalent to תִקוּן (tiqqun), counting the letters and the word, and this is the large מ"ם (mem) and it is made into a ring]. Therefore, it is said by all, 'You are betrothed to me with this טַבַּעַת (taba’at), ring'—ם (mem). Of this it says, A cluster of vapor forming in formlessness, thrust in a עִזְקָא (izqa), ring, not white, not black, not red, not green, no color at all (Zohar 1:15a). When it extended to shine, a cord surveyed, it yielded radiant colors… within (ibid.).

And the mystery of the matter is, Wrapped in light like a cloak, [stretching out heavens like a tent-cloth] (Psalms 104:2). For this is the cloaked light that does not spread, hidden. The אֲוִיר (avir), atmosphere, [lit., air], is called the אוֹר (or), light, and with the addition of the י (yod), the point in the palace, for when one takes the י (yod) out of אֲוִיר (avir), atmosphere, one reveals אוֹר (or), light. And this is And God said, Let there be אוֹר (or), light (Genesis 1:3) (Tiqqunei ha-Zohar, 19a).

This page develops the account of creation with the Hebrew alphabet found in Zohar 1:2b-3b:

Of the letters of Torah it says: ‘There is no early or late in Torah’ (BT Pesaḥim 6b). However, in the Throne all is arrayed fittingly. This mystery has been given to those who are wise hearted.

And the enlightened will shine (Daniel 12:3)—these are the letters which have a mind to enter before the King, each one according to its תִקוּנא (tiqqun), order. From the side of Judgement each one entered from last to first, because the left arm is [the month of] Tishrei. This is בְּרֵאשִׁית (Bereshit), In the beginning, and it is בְּ”א תִּשְׁרֵי (be-alef Tishrei), in the first of Tishrei, because the world was created with Judgment [cf. Rabbeinu Tam on BT Rosh ha-Shanah 27a]. Therefore they entered from last to first. But we have said that the world was created from the right side, and the letters entered from first to last? The mystery of the matter: I have said, the world is built by חֶסֶד (ḥesed), kindness (Psalms 89:3). Therefore when the letters entered from last to first, and then from first to last, the blessed Holy One did not want to create the world by them until He joined them together, the right side and the left side. Only then did He create the world by them.

He took א (alef), and then ב (bet) in [descending] order, and he took ת ,ש ,ר (tav, shin, resh) in reverse [ascending] order. He then placed י (yod) with them from His Name, and He created the world by them, that the building should endure, and they are: א ,ב ,י ,ת ,ש ,ר (alef, bet, yod, tav, shin, resh). The letters א ,ב ,י (alef, bet, yod) are אֲשֶׁר בְּיָדוֹ נֶפֶשׁ כָּל חָי (Asher be-yado nefesh kal ḥai), in Whose hand is the breath of each living thing (Job 12:10); ת (tav) is תּוֹרַת יְהוָה תְּמִימָה (Torat Adonai temimah), the teaching of YHWH is perfect (Psalms 19:8); ש (shin) is שַׁבָּת (Shabbat), Sabbath; ר (resh) is רֵאשִׁית חָכְמָה יִרְאַת יְהוָה (reshit ḥakhmah yirat Adonai), the beginning of wisdom—fear of YHWH (Psalms 111:10). And from all of these only by the letter ב (bet) did the blessed Holy One wish to begin. It is the building of the אָב (Av), Father, the building of the world, and from there He began, because in the future by it He will build Jerusalem, as it is said, בּוֹנֵה יְרוּשָׁלִַם יְהוָה (Boneh Yerushalayim Adonai), Builder of Jerusalem, YHWH (Psalms 147:2); אִם יְהוָה לֹא יִבְנֶה בַיִת (Im Adonai lo yivneh vayit), if YHWH does not build a house [in vain do its builders labor on it] (Psalms 127:1). Also, the building of Torah and the World that is Coming are by the letter ב (bet), and on it the world endures. In the time of its building, it is as the time the world was being created and built. And this is, בְּרֵאשִׁית (Bereshit), When God began to create (Genesis 1:1). But when the First Temple was destroyed it was as if the world was welter and waste [cf. BT Sanhedrin 103a, in the name of Rabbi Shim’on son of Yoḥai]. And this is, And the earth then was תֹהוּ וָבֹהוּ (tohu va-vohu), welter and waste (Genesis 1:1). Immediately after it is built it is written, And YHWH said, ‘Let there be light’ (Genesis 1:3). Because all the letters shine there. Even though the אוֹר (or), light, is the letter א (alef) His light shines into ב (bet) with the five lights which is the upper ה (he) of יְהוָה (YHWH) (Tiqqunie ha-Zohar, 16a).

Regarding the Title, "Tikunim/Repairs"[edit]

Regarding the character and purpose of the book, and chiefly regarding its name "Tikunim," wrote Rabbi Shalom Buzaglo:

The book of Tikunim (Repairs) -- because the repair of [the lowest world] `Asiyah is the chief tikun (repair) of all tikunim, and if `Asiyah is not repaired and elevated, how can Yeztirah and Beri'ah be repaired? For, tikun of `Asiyah must precede all. Hence we have found and acquired a befitting explanation for the name of the book of Tikunim, since the whole intention of Rashbi was to repair the Shekhinah in the world of `Asiyah... For, the segulah [special charm and efficacy] of this book is to bring the Redemption and freedom from the exile. And although all the books of Rashbi draw the Redeemer closer... behold, the book of Tikkunim does so especially, for, for this purpose he compiled it, to repair the Malkhut in the world of `Asiyah. From Heaven they permitted him and helped him to compile this book of Tikkunim... Said Rabbi Shimon, 'Fortunate is the portion of the upper beings and lower beings in support helping us!'

— Introduction to the commentary Kisse Melekh on Tikunei haZohar

Comparison with the Zohar
Rabbi Nachman of Breslov was involved with Tikunei haZohar more than with any other book, and he stated that Tikunei haZohar is of such different holiness and wisdom that it is beyond compare to the rest of the holy Zohar.[3] He also said that, "Concerning the book Tikunei haZohar, one thousand books would not suffice to explain the secrets that are to be found there."[4]

Rabbi Tzvi Hirsh of Zidichov reckons that Tikunei haZohar is so called because

it speaks here in this book of yichudim (unifications of Divine attributes) and of tzinorot haSefirot (channels of the Sefirot), and they are called in this holy language `Tikunim,' as [Eliyahu] said [in the second introduction], 'You are the One who brought forth ten Tikunim, and we call them the Ten Sefirot.' ... And behold, the Sefirot were points, etc., and most of the words of this book go according to permutations of the names and unifications, and they are the essence of the world of Tikkun from MaH and BaN, renewed by their unification in permutations of Sefirot, looking face to face, sweetening harsh decrees. Therefore this book is called the book of Tikunim, for it speaks in unifications, repair of worlds, to thoroughly refine and whiten from the dross and the waste via unifications of holy names in vessels from various vessels, according to the time, the hour and the world which this holy one speaks of. This is not the case with the book of the Zohar, most of the words of which surround the essence of the traits [atzmut hamidot] in the course of life, and inspirations of ethical teachings, and which does not speak of unifications except in a few places and in the books of Idra and in Sefra deTzni`uta.

— Rabbi Tzvi Hirsch Ziditchov, at the head of his book of Tikkunim

Another reason why it is called "Tikunim" is given by Rabbi Zadok HaKohen of Lublin, who wrote, "Rashbi revealed and opened seventy faces that are in the word Bereishit, and called them Tikunei haZohar, because it is a term for light (אור, ohr); ohr is gematria of raz, which is the hidden light that the Holy One, Blessed is He, hid in the Torah, etc., by means of which it would be in the ability of the man to repair all that transpired upon him via teshuvah [repentance; return to God]..."[5]

Commentaries[edit]

There have not been many commentaries on Tikunei haZohar. The more noted ones include: Kisse Melekh by Rabbi Shalom Buzaglo, Ohr Yisrael by Rabbi Yisrael of Koznitz, Biurei haGra on Tikunei Zohar (Vilna, Jewish year 5627), Chemdat Tzvi by Rabbi Tzvi Hirsh, Be'er Yitzchak by Rabbi Yitzchak Aizik of Polotsk, Be'er Lechai Ro'i by Rabbi Tzvi Hirsh Shapira of Dinov [Dynow], Kegan haYarak by Rabbi Kalfa Guedj, Netzutzei Zohar by Rav Reuven Margoliot, Metok Medvash by Rav Daniel Frisch, and the Sulam by Rabbi Yehuda Ashlag.

Customs and Influences[edit]

There is a Jewish custom to study Tikunei haZohar especially in the month of Elul, and also during the Ten Days of Repentance, since according to the kabbalists (including the Arizal) and many chasidic books, Tikunei haZohar repairs a person's spirit and cleanses his body and soul; therefore according to tradition, during these days which are called yemei teshuvah (days of repentance or drawing close to God), the repair of deeds is much greater.[2] In some printed versions there is a partitioning of Tikunei haZohar over the forty days from the eve of Rosh Chodesh Elul to Yom Kippur, but this partitioning is not obligatory. In Chasidic communities (and others, more recently) it has been customary to publicize a list of praises of this custom and to distribute it and/or the book on the eve of Rosh Chodesh Elul[6]

One particular influence of Tikunei haZohar is that Tikkun #21 is referenced in Likutei Moharan II #8 and other works of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov in discussing "the song that will be awakened in the future" at the time of the ultimate Redemption and end of the exile: the "simple, double, triple and quadruple song ... Y YK YKW YKWK (K has been substituted for H to guard the sanctity of the Tetragrammaton)."[7] Rabbi Israel Dov Odesser and Na Nachs have understood the name and the song Na Nach Nachma Nachman (MeUman) as an aspect of this song.

The Study of Tikunei haZohar (Jewish View)[edit]

Despite the preeminence of Tikunei haZohar and despite the topmost priority of Torah study in Judaism, Tikunei haZohar has been relatively obscure and unread in the Jewish world in recent times, particularly outside of Israel and outside of Chasidic groups.

Who should study Tikunei haZohar
Although some rabbis since the Shabbetai Tzvi debacle still maintain that one should be married and forty years old in order to study Kabbalah, since the time of Baal Shem Tov there has been relaxation of such stringency, and many maintain that it is sufficient to be married and knowledgeable in halakhah and hence permitted to study Kabbalah and by inclusion, Tikunei haZohar; and some rabbis will advise learning Kabbalah even without restrictions of marriage or age.[8] In any case the aim of such caution is to not become caught up in Kabbalah to the extent of departing from reality or halakhah.

Rabbinic Accolades; the Importance of Studying Tikunei haZohar
Many eminent rabbis and sages have echoed the (Tikunei) Zohar's own urgings for Jews to study it, and have and urged people in the strongest of terms to be involved with it. To quote from Zohar and from some of those rabbis:

It is already well known, the greatness of the book Tikunei haZohar composed by the Godly Tanna, Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai, z"ya; fortunate is the man who listens to and dwells in it every day, for our Sages have declared that even its language is very beneficial for the soul even when he does not understand what he reads.

— The Rav haKadosh from Apta, in the Introduction to Tikunei Zohar printed in Medzhibuzh

O that my people would listen to me! In this evil generation when heresy increases, it is proper to learn the Zohar and the Tikunim with children nine years of age so that their fear of Hashem will precede their wisdom and will be maintained.

— Notzer Chesed on Masekhet Avot, perek 4

From the time when the two great luminaries, the Zohar haKaddosh and the Tikkunim, shined and rose, the Jews, the congregation of Yisrael, accepted and practiced the holy study of the Holy Zohar and the Tikkunim, alone or in multitudes, young or old, and even when they can not understand the secret and pure sayings in those holy books, nevertheless they drink with thirst the things written there, and they rejoice greatly when reading them. And if in one place one hundred people are found studying the Holy Zohar, then one thousand people will be found studying the Tikunim, for most of the ba`alei batim [homeowners; laymen] hold on fast to the study of the Tikunim, and this is their custom each and every year from Rosh Chodesh Elul until Yom Kippur. And the reason why the study of the Tikunim spread during these days of teshuvah more than the study of the Holy Zohar, is because when a man sins, he damages more in the world of `Asiyah, and it is known that the seventy Tikunim that Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai made, since they follow more the pattern of numbers, therefore their study causes a greater tikkun in the world of `Asiyah , for in that world lies the secret of numbers and accounts; therefore during the days of teshuvah we are accustomed to study the book of Tikunim.

— Rabbi Yosef Chayim, The Ben Ish Chai, in Hakdamat Tikunim Benayahu

Bereishit/In the heading (בראשית) -- there is Atar/place (אתר) and Yavesh/dry (יבש) -- and this is, "Venahar yecherav ve'yavesh/and the river shall be drained and dry" [Isa. 19:5] -- at that time which is dry, etc., the children below will shout out in unison and say, "Shem`a Yisrael/Hear O Yisrael!" but there will be no voice and no reply. This is what was written, "Az yikra'uneni, velo a`aneh/Then they will call Me, but I will not answer" (Prov. 1:28). So is whoever causes the Kabbalah and the Wisdom to be removed from the Oral Torah and from the Written Torah, and causes people to not endeavor in them, and says that there is nothing other than the pshat in the Torah and the Talmud. Certainly it is as if he removes the flow from that River and from that Garden. Woe to him! Better for him that he were not created in the world and did not learn that Written Torah and Oral Torah! For it is considered of him as if he returned the world to "tohu vavohu/unformed and void," and he causes poverty in the world and prolongs the Exile.

— Tikunei haZohar #43, p. 82a

Our holy master, Rabbi Chayim Vital -- may his merit shield us -- in the introduction to the book Etz Chayim, warned the students of the Torah, those who listen to the Word of God, of the great obligation they have to study the hidden Torah [i.e. Kabbalah], and the great punishment for neglecting its study, because one hour of this study does the same as thirty days of the study of Pshat (plain meaning of the Torah).

— Kisse Melech by Rabbi Shalom Buzaglo, on Tikunei Zohar #30, p. 73b

References[edit]

  1. ^ Footnote in The mystery of marriage: how to find true love and happiness in married life, by Rabbi Yitsḥaḳ Ginzburg, 1999, p. 466
  2. ^ a b Much of the information on contents and sections of the Zohar is found in the booklet Ohr haZohar(אור הזוהר) by Rabbi Yehuda Shalom Gross, in Hebrew, published by Mifal Zohar Hoilumi, Ramat Beth Shemesh, Israel, Heb. year 5761 (2001 CE); also available at israel613.com accessed March 1, 2012.] Explicit permission is given in both the printed and electronic book "to whoever desires to print paragraphs from this book, or the entire book, in any language, in any country, in order to increase Torah and fear of Heaven in the world and to awaken hearts our brothers the children of Yisrael in complete teshuvah."
  3. ^ Chayey Moharan #359
  4. ^ s:Sichot Haran#285
  5. ^ Pri Tzadik, siman 8, p. 51a
  6. ^ For example, an organization called מפעל הזוהר העולמי, Mif`al Zohar ha`Olami (World Zohar Factory), http://www.ha-zohar.info/, distributes copies, especially before Elul.
  7. ^ Tikkun #21, p. 51b
  8. ^ Rabbi Aryeh Rosenfeld z"l instructed Rabbi Yaakov (Jeffrey) Siegel to learn Zohar while was still single.

External links[edit]