What is the root cause of us falling into sin?

This is because in exile the true realization of who is the King is concealed from us. We have fallen under the exile of the world’s nations who have many false religions and sources of authority, which causes it to seem as if they have their own power. We don’t realize that all power and leaders in the world receive their control from Hashem Himself, the source of all power. Hashem’s Kingship has fallen so much that all sorts of idol worship are also referred to as Elohim, Gods. For the sake of Free Will, they have been given the ability to fool us as if they have their own authority when they really derive everything from Hashem.

As a result, a person falls into seeing things as results of nature and physicality, and in every negative characteristic which arouses within him he feels as if he is a god, as if he has his own strength and power. Automatically he is drawn after it and forgets what the source of all power and characteristics in our personality is.

We see that the primary way we can keep the Torah is dependent on putting all of our energy into remembering at all times who is the real King, because keeping the Torah needs to be from within a desire to enthrone Hashem. This is by reminding oneself that ’Hashem is my King from the beginning’, there is a King who preceded everything, from whom everything in the world receives their power, a Master of the World who ruled before anything was created.

There was once a Breslover Chassid who would constantly repeat during his Hisbodedus the first words of the Story of the Lost Princess, “There once was a King…”, as if to tell himself, ‘after all the confusing and crazy thoughts which enter my mind, at the end, “there once was a King…”, before all the absurdity was created, and He created them. So let me run directly to Him!’

Such an outlook allows a person to skip over anything- Hashem is my King from the beginning, to reattach all idols back to their source from where they receive their ability to fool people as if they are gods themselves, and thereby to merit truly keeping the Torah.

Author: Ephraim Portnoy

Ephraim Portnoy studied in both Beth Medrash Gevoha and the Breslov Kollel of Lakewood. He currently resides in Brachfeld, Israel.

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1 Comment

  1. “to reattach all idols back to their source”…
    but a jew should have nothing to do with idols at all.
    maybe better to say to reattach all thoughts, prayers etc rather than “idols”.

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