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The Ascent of the Tzaddik

The Tzaddik lies, his eyes closed, suddenly they open wide

The Grandson:
What do you see, Grandfather?

The Tzaddik:
I see that the husk
From the fruit is peeling
From the face of The Creation
The mask is falling
I see
The word of the Creator
Its garments shedding
I no longer see
A table, a chair, a lamp...
Only letters do I see
The utterances of genesis
The commands "Let there be!"
Which nestle
In the creations of the world
Forcefully instilled
By perpetual command
Lest they revert to
The nullity
They crave

As the sap's pulsing flow
Through the twigs of the tree
So see I
Rivers of being
Constantly streaming
Along the river-beds of existence
The soul
Of the elements
I see -
Their material form
Their mantle of corporeality
No longer
Do my eyes perceive

The Grandson:
What else do you see, Grandfather?

The Tzaddik:
My precious one
Two pillars of light
Have come to take me.

Based on a Chassidic tradition describing the passing of Rabbi Schneur Zalman on Liadi on Tevet 24, 5573 (1812)

From the Hebrew by Yanki Tauber, originally published by www.chabad.org.

Click here for the Hebrew Original - המקור בעברית

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Miknaf Ha'aretz

• The All-Inclusive (p. 8)

• Through Tranquility and Turmoil (p. 10)

• The Authors of the Tosfos (p. 12)

• A Prayer in the wee Hours (p. 13)

• Freedom of Choice (p. 16)

• The One (p. 17)

• The Spark That Shall Never Die (p. 20)

• The Luminaries of the Generation (p. 25)

• Eternity (p. 37)

• The Memory of the Souls (p. 38)

• The Cry of the Holy Sparks (p. 46)

• Is This Man? (p. 52)

• Tear (p. 77)

• The Dejected's Prayer (p. 96)

• Night (p. 120)

• The Heights of the Holy (p. 144)

• A Story About a Prince (p. 152)