Home The Seventh Pillar: The Tzaddik

The Seventh Pillar: The Tzaddik

by Yossi Katz

VII. Seventh Pillar: The Tzaddik

The seventh fundamental is attachment to the True Tzaddik:

1. The soul of Mashiach preceded the world.[1] It is the root of the souls of Israel, and the entire Creation,[2] for “The entire universe was only created to attend him” (Berakhot 6b) and “The Tzaddik is the foundation of the world” (Proverbs 10:25).

2. The Holy One, blessed-be-He, took counsel with this soul in the creation of His Universe, as it is written: “With whom did He take counsel, who gave Him understanding and guided Him in the way of judgment?” (Isaiah 40:14).[3]

3. He gave God a guarantee that he will repair the Universe.[4]

4. All the acts of devotion of all the world, all the incarnations, refinements and tests, and the revelation of faith – all are through him, as it is written: “He is faithful in all My house” (Numbers 12:7).[5]

5. To him God has given sovereignty and kingship: “The Tzaddik rules in the fear of God” (II Samuel 23:3).

6. He is the Heavenly court.[6]

7. The revelation of God’s hand – God’s control over every detail in the spiritual and material realms – is through him.

8. He reveals prayer, as it is written: “And I am prayer” (Psalms 109:4).

9. He is the Chariot of the Shechinah.[7]

10. He is the holiness.[8]

11. He is the vitality of the whole universe.[9]

12. Through him all devotions rise up to Heaven.[10]

13. All arousal to Teshuvah is through him.[11]

14. Through our attachment to the True Tzaddik – through the knowledge of all the above and through following the Tzaddik’s guidance, a spark of the light of the holiness of the Tzaddik is drawn into us, each person according to their level. Even if you are very far removed from holiness, closeness to the True Tzaddik will at the very least bring you to realize how far you are from truth and from the path of the just, and how sunk you are in the opposite. You will then long for the truth and pray to come closer to God without falling into despair and depression. You will know that God is calling you and that you are precious in His eyes. The same applies to those on a higher level as well, each one on his own level: the closer they are to the True Tzaddik, the more they draw the holiness of the Tzaddik in upon themselves and walk in his pathway, knowing that everything is in the hand of God and praying constantly that they should come closer. Amen.

15. Parts of the soul of the Tzaddik are to be found in the whole creation, especially in God’s People, and especially in all the true Tzaddikim.[12]

16. Five times in the history of the world the path of truth has been renewed: through Moses our Teacher, Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai, Rabbi Yitzchak Luria – the ARI, Rabbi Israel the Baal Shem Tov, and “The Flowing Stream, the Source of Wisdom” (Proverbs 18:4) – Rebbe Nachman. From him until Mashiach there will be nothing new.[13]

17. Wherever the concept of Tzaddik is found in Likutey Moharan the reference is to the above Tzaddik.

18. Prayer and the soul of Mashiach were revealed especially in King David.

19. A person should not strive to become this Tzaddik or think that “anyone who wants to take this crown can do so” (cf. Berakhot 16b). One who does so is the “false famed leader” discussed in Likutey Moharan. Instead each person must receive from this Tzaddik, who is revealed every few generations. This is the spark of Mashiach, the preparation for the redemption. Everyone must know of this Tzaddik, because anyone who does not know of him in this incarnation will have to be reincarnated again and again until they do know.[14] This is why we are waiting so intently for the Redemption, when things will be restored as they should be. This was what the Sages were referring to when they said, “Get yourself a teacher and acquire a friend” (Avot 1:6) – i.e. as friends, together you will receive from this Teacher. They said: “Everyone who makes a quotation in the name of the one who said it brings redemption into the world” (Avot 6:6). In other words one should know from whom everything derives and what is the source of the Torah. Through this one brings closer the redemption of the world and the redemption of one’s soul.

20. One should know that there has never been such a unique figure as “The Flowing Stream, the Source of Wisdom” in all the world. For he prepared the weapons with which our Righteous Mashiach will fight in order to put the world in order. May this be God’s will. Amen.

[1] Pesachim 54a.

[2] Shmot Rabbah 40:3. All souls were included in the soul of Adam. ADaM is the acronym for: Adam, David and Mashiach.

[3] Bereshit Rabbah 8:6.

[4] Tikkuney Zohar 69, 111b; Zohar, III:216a.

[5] Cf. Tikkuney Zohar 69, 112a.

[6] See Sefer HaMiddot, Tzaddik A:54.

[7] See Rashi, Genesis 17:22.

[8] See Bava Batra 75b; Tzaddikim are called kodesh, holy.

[9] The world at large is considered Malkhut; The Tzaddik is called Yesod. Through Yesod sustenance comes down to the whole world.

[10] Only Moses was able to erect the Tabernacle (Exodus 40). Only with the help of Moses, the Tzaddik, were the people’s contributions to the Tarbanacle to any avail.

[11] See Likutey Moharan I, 17; love and fear of God are taught by the Tzaddik.

[12] Tikkuney Zohaar 69, 112a.

[13] Chayey Moharan 279.

[14] The ARI teaches that if a person did not perform a certain mitzvah he has to be reincarnated to perform that mitzvah. (Sha’ar HaMitzvot, Hakdamah). Thus, one who was unwilling to attach himself to the Tzaddik must be reincarnated in order to do so, because only through the Tzaddik can his service of God be elevated. The ARI teaches that all the Jewish souls were connected to and are a part of Adam’s soul, and Adam’s soul is that of the Mashiach (see above 7:2). The soul of Moses comes in each generation to allow those in that generation to attach themselves to him.