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To dedicate this lesson
Igrot Hare’aya – Letters of Rav Kook:#164 – part III

The Need for Torah Devotees to Write on Jewish Philosophy


Beit Din Eretz Hemda - Gazit

25 Elul 5783
Date and Place: 26 Tishrei 5669 (1908)

Recipient: Moshe Zeidel, a protégé of Rav Kook. In earlier years, there were several letters to him.

Body: [This last installment includes very lofty and difficult terminology; I pray that it is translated in a way that makes it (mainly) accurately understood.]

The Nation of Israel’s psychology is especially full of life and purpose. It reaches full strength when the Nation of Israel and its spirit connect to the Land of Israel, which is the soul of the people who live in it. Lightning will flash for those who look forward with all their hearts to see it in its glory. The new literature [that speaks about the Land] with great liveliness shows the strength of this great influence, for the strength of the Lord of the World is hidden within it.

The power of psychological health will remove the diseases of forgetfulness, silliness, and disinterest from the soul of the nation and the world. The national memory will once again give life with all of its light. The periods of light will again serve as life does today before the nation’s eyes and spirit. Clear intellect will teach the nation’s sons and everyone what is possible, and how important it is to rely upon intellect. It also shall show how everyone can find light and life, even people who were previously considered to be dead, for generations, indeed for all of time, throughout the world.

Intellectuality is only an external cloak for the light of the nation’s psychological life, which is assisted by Hashem’s strength. It causes grandeur and strength to be seen. The regular intellectuality cannot give life to those who seek it; only the Spirit of the World will provide the desired result.

A new spirit is doing wonderful things even though the Land was presumed to be desolate. It is unnecessary to explain matters in pieces, a little here and a little there. Rather, there is a great power that gets all of nature to be involved [in the spiritual revolution]. The Jewish truth is coming out of its hiding place; "Justice reveals itself from the Heavens."

Because of the enormity of the justice and the lofty value [of the nation], it is almost impossible to identify the special form of the wonderful defense of the nation against all those who question its value. Now is the time to deal with the generalities – the greatness of healthy ideas. Then the details will work themselves out in a variety of ways, according to the greatness of the spirit and the power of its absorption in the heart of those who think.

Israel is lofty as is its power to connect to Hashem. It does not experience slow growth within the arteries of its soul. It has the power to spiritually jump and skip. At one moment, it can rise up to the stars, as it can fall to the ground, because the storehouse of its greatness is forever internally gathered. The more an idea is characteristic of Israel, the more it approaches its source. Israel is not restricted by the bonds of development. Therefore, the most light-emitting ideas cannot be given over by signs of development that resemble the developments of pregnancy and birth, which is limited in its scope. However, there is room for this theory to follow levels of spiritual power in the elements of the idea, when it is compartmentalized in a manner of study. This is especially so when it comes to influencing life – actions, characteristics, feelings, and knowledge, whether regarding the individual or the communal. Then, we have much opportunity to employ well-based historical wisdom, which is loftier than the general course of nature, which builds its levels based on fleeting conjectures. Rather, it develops its edifice with its internal spirit. The power that finds expression in practical life, in the past and present, based on a clear determination, does not require the hard work of gradual growth.

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