Ha'azinu: Chapter 6

The holy Idra Zuta (the smaller assembly) The day when Rabbi Shimon wanted to depart from the world


This section begins to tell about the events surrounding Rabbi Shimon's voluntary departure from the world. Many of the friends are with him, although they come and go as Rabbi Shimon requests them to. A fire encircles the whole house as he prepares to reveal things that he has never before had permission to reveal, and Rabbi Aba is charged with writing down his revelations. Rabbi Shimon begins by saying that the living are the righteous, and anyone who is wicked is considered to be dead. He says that God delights in the honor of the righteous even more than His own honor. Next Rabbi Shimon tells the other rabbis that he can see two rabbis who died some time earlier together with seventy righteous people all shining with the radiance of the most hidden Atika Kadisha; at this statement the other rabbis tremble. Rabbi Shimon says that during his whole life he was attached to God, and now at the end God and all His holy followers have come joyfully to listen to hidden secrets and to the praise of Atika Kadisha.