Vaera: Chapter 10

"Know therefore this day, and consider it in your heart"


Rabbi Elazar opens the discussion, saying: " Know therefore this day, and consider it in your heart (Heb. levavecha) that Hashem He is Elohim." Rabbi Shimon says if you really want to understand this and know that Hashem is Elohim, you need to know that the good and evil inclinations dwell in the heart together, and that you must love Him with both. One should convert the evil attributes so that, instead of sinning, they serve Hashem. Then the evil inclination and the good inclination will be one, and you will find that Hashem is Elohim. In this way, judgment and mercy are included together.

We are told that the wicked prevent the blessings above from being drawn down to them, as in, "And He will hold up the heaven so that there shall be no rain." This is because they separate the evil inclination from the good one, using the evil one. Rabbi Shimon speaks about the left and right, and how they relate to Judgment. He next returns to a discussion in the previous section, reiterating that the element of air combined with that of water in Moses and Aaron - thus combining Tiferet with Chesed. He also repeats the admonition to unify the Holy Name properly by worshipping with one's whole heart and with one's whole soul.