|Derech Hashem: Notes on Second Chapter|
The Purpose of Creation. Now, just again to remind us there is a difference between purpose and a reason. Correct? My purpose in becoming a doctor, my purpose in moving to Teaneck is because I want to raise a family with a house and a backyard and I don’t want to worry about being mugged every day. Now what is the reason you don’t want to worry about that is because you don’t care about learning as much as other people do. Right, see, I am sorry. I forgot that you were here. So you see that there is a difference between purpose and reason. Kabbalah deals with the reason for the purpose. Hashkafa deals with the purpose. So we are not going to deal with the reasons, if you want to deal with the reasons, then G-d willing those of you who stick it through and what I would like to do is do the Kabbalah version of derech hashem after we finish derech hashem which will deal with the reasons for a lot of these things. But you have got to know this first. No, two years. Two years, because it starts going smoothly. Are we ready, so everyone is agreed that there is a difference between purpose and reason.
G-d’s purpose in creation was to bestow of G-d’s goodness to another. (That G-d has a need?) So it must be that G-d created a need in G-d’s self. (It couldn’t be inherent, right?) Right, it can’t be inherent because you already learned that in the previous. G-d doesn’t, G-d is entirely independent, absolutely complete. So now this, well why did G-d want to, I understand the purpose, but why did G-d want to do this, that is reason, that is kabalah. (?) There is no other yet. (?) But why does this idea of an other to be created even come to G-d’s mind. Did you ever read that book “The Other”? (?) What? (?) To a being other than G-d’s self. (So if he created me then he made himself dependent, he made himself no longer independent.) Oh, so we are going to have to differentiate between dependent, that is why I think that Luzzatto left out need at the end of that paragraph, right. Where he said that he doesn’t have any needs, obviously if you say that now G-d has to do good to another then there is a need. So G-d alone, now, the way it translates this is v’hineh tireh, pay attention is what it says in Hebrew. Only G-d has the true perfection free of any deficiencies and there is no perfection comparable to G-d’s because if you examine you will find that any imaginable perfection with the exception of G-d’s, of G-d’s perfection, is therefore not true perfection. Really the Hebrew doesn’t have the word therefore, other things may be said to have perfection but it is only relative to something less perfect. So whenever we speak about the perfect well, the perfect woman, obviously it only means in comparison to other women, there is no such thing as the perfect woman or the perfect man. (No, I think it means in terms of your, in terms of man’s needs as opposed as comparing to other men.) Right, obviously you are a newly wed. Absolute perfection however is only that of G-d’s. So you see that somehow perfection is going to be playing, G-d’s perfection is going to be playing a significant role over here. Let us read the whole paragraph and then we will examine it. Since G-d desired to bestow G-d and G-d is perfect, a partial good would not be sufficient. If it is a partial good then G-d is no longer perfect. The good that G-d bestows would have to be the ultimate good that the handiwork, the other, that G-d would make could accept. However there is only one true perfect good which is G-d, G-d alone however is the only true good, and therefore his beneficent desire would not be satisfied unless it could bestow that very good, namely the true perfect good that exists in G-d’s intrinsic essence. Now you understand why you have to know that G-d was intrinsically, that G-d’s existence demanded that G-d exist. In other words we deal with G-d’s existence as a reality, something that can be shared.
This is also true in another way, so now ‘this is also a true in another way’ means it is a different way of looking at the same issue, right, so let us see, we are going to finish the paragraph and we will tear it apart. True good exists only in G-d. G-d’s wisdom therefore decreed that the nature of this true benefaction be G-d’s giving creative things the opportunity to attach themselves to G-d to the greatest degree possible for them. Follow? Therefore even though created things cannot emulate G-d’s perfection in there own right, the fact that they can be attached to G-d allows them to partake of it since they can be considered part of G-d’s perfection as a result of their association with G-d, they can thus derive pleasure from their true good to the greatest degree possible for them. The purpose of all that was created was therefore to bring into existence a creature who could derive pleasure from G-d’s own good in a way that would be possible for it. So this paragraph was presented from two perspectives. One from G-d’s perspective, and the other from the perspective of the being we don’t know what that being is yet, who will receive or that will receive G-d’s goodness. So the first, remember when you said mitzad acher, from the other perspective, the first part is from G-d’s perspective, I am perfect says G-d, and therefore if I want to share good or bestow of my goodness upon another, it has to be the perfect good, otherwise I wouldn’t be perfect anymore and therefore I have to share the only perfect intrinsic good things which there is, which is me. On the other hand I have to create a being that is able to share somehow my goodness, now that being by virtue of being another can never be fully me because it is created, I am not, but I have to make it as possible, or I have to make it possible for the other being to experience G-dliness as much as possible so the other being can attach itself to G-d. Follow? No?
(Isn’t that a little catch 22 because ultimately the being which he will eventually create can never attain the ultimate goodness.) Sure the ultimate goodness is to attach. (But he can never be perfect, it is saying that perfection or that perfect goodness that G-d wants to grant.) You ever hear the expression, we are going to discuss this, but did you ever hear the expression that the righteous even in the world to come will have no peace? That is why. Because the more perfect you are the more limited you are, the more you confront your limitations you go crazy. (Is that what happened with a lot of the ? in that they started seeing how limited.)