Erev Shavuos 5780

A gitten Erev Yom Tov everyone! Today it is Malchus Sh’b’Malchus in Sefiras HaOmer, our very last day getting to do this wonderful mitzvah. Now we’re ready for receiving the Torah, hopefully, at least as ready as we can hope to be this year. The first day of Shavuos is the yohrtzait of the Baal Shem Tov zy’a.

The last word of the Lam’natzeach said after counting Sefirah is “ארץ,” corresponding to the final permutation of Malchus, which is physical reality, in which there is land, which is the plainest and coarsest manifestation of this Sefirah. It says in Pirkei Avos דרך ארץ קדמה לתורה, Derech Eretz comes before Torah. There are various ways of understanding what “Derech Eretz,” literally “Way of the Land” means. Many commentaries say this refers to having parnossoh through a job, others say this refers to mentshlichkait, yet others say this is a euphemism for being married. Considering the first is more commonly known, I’m going to focus on the second in this brief vort.

When we count Sefirah, according to Kabbalah we’re making various Tikkunim in the higher worlds where the Sefiros dwell, and through this drawing down their various influences to this world. As explained by the sifrei chassidus, we should have in mind to repair each of these middos (attributes) within ourselves each day of Sefirah. Per example, in each day of Chesed, to focus on a different aspect of Chesed as corresponding to the sub-Sefirah of the day. In Malchus, our job is to focus primarily on bringing these things מכוח אל הפועל, from potential to actualization. So on this last day of Malchus, in which all the attributes of the Sefiros are contained according to the Zohar, we have to tie together the whole package of the middos we’ve focused on repairing this whole time.

What’s the ultimate purpose though of Tikkun HaMidos, this fixing our traits?

The entire purpose of our personal work is to receive the Torah from Hashem. Only with proper character traits can we even hope to attain this. Through conscious action, and asking Hashem to remove the damages we’ve made in the higher Sefiros as well as those expressed through ourselves personally, we can fix the spiritual damages we’ve caused and from there our personal character. Once these are purified enough, then we can exist in the aspect of “דרך ארץ קדמה לתורה” and personally experience some degree of the reception of the Torah that happened at Har Sinai and merit to generate חידושי תורה, new Torah thoughts.

Hashem should bentsh us all with true purity, that through Torah we should know freedom, and that we should merit to the Geulah Shleimah swiftly within our days.

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