Far Be It From Me – Parashat Mishpatim

February 7, 2018 at 2:17 AM , , ,

“….And he who did not ambush but G-d caused it to happen to him, I shall provide you a place to which he shall flee….” – Shemot 21:13

וַאֲשֶׁר לֹא צָדָה וְהָאֱלֹהִים אִנָּה לְיָדוֹ וְשַׂמְתִּי לְךָ מָקוֹם אֲשֶׁר יָנוּס שָׁמָּה – כא, יג 

The Arizal notes that the accidental murderer is at first referred to in the third person – “G-d caused it to happen to him,” and then immediately afterward addressed in the first person – “I shall provide you a place.”

The Torah’s use of the third person when speaking of a Jew committing a sin hints that transgression of the Torah, even inadvertently, is entirely foreign to a Jew’s true identity, his G-dly Soul. Therefore, even when addressing the person directly, his sin is not referred to as something that “you did,” but as something that “happened to him”—someone  absent, not your natural self. As Chassidus explains, it is only your “other” identity, the Animal Soul, that allows for a Jew to be attracted to sin.

Far Be It From Me










Nevertheless, the person’s wrongful behavior affects him entirely, harming the G-dly Soul’s sensitivity and conscious relationship with G-d. Therefore, the end of the verse states that “I shall provide you” – the G-dly soul, a place of refuge – an opportunity for teshuva, repentance and repair. And when the G-dly Soul rebounds toward G-d with the dynamic thrust of teshuva, it takes with it and repairs the Animal Soul as well.

—Likkutei Sichos vol. 9, p. 302


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