AyinBase with R' Paltiel Friday 6 Kislev 5772
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We saw how the Zohar says, 'light benefits from the birur/purification of the darkness'. Thereby the element of essence is revealed.
On the first day there was darkness and Hashem said, 'let there be light' and the medrash says at that point it was not know which he prefers, 'the deeds of the righteous or the deeds of the wicked!' Ohr/light in the simple sense of revealing what is in front of us, that effect can be accomplished by feel – one can feel and touch to 'see' the room. What is the difference if the room is seen or touched? In darkness the first thing you encounter is the physical. And you encounter it because it interferes with your movement.
This is knowing from the external perspective.
In darkness, the object exists just for itself and says, 'i'm here'.
In contrast, in light, the representation comes first – you see color, which is not tangible at all. You see what the object is for and why it is here. And only after that do you see the physical elements of weight and material.
You 'see' the objects without 'coming into contact' with them. This knowledge by means of sight is more convincing than touch... What is the basis for sight? The entire space and context is the basis. This is not an acquired reality – this is a primary reality. Then we see an object in that context/setting. It is so real because it is part of the primary reality. In sight we relate not just to the object, but to that which brought it into being.
And this is the meaning of the medrash – light is the work of the righteous. Darkness is the work of the wicked. Wicked here not meaning evil, but he's satisfied not looking for truth – he's fine with physicality. And the physicality of the world is real – He made it and there is no limit to what can be accomplished in the world.
The righteous feels the infinity that is in the world, but sees immediately that this infinity is the G-dly presence in the world, not the world.
Light illuminates darkness, shows you the same object, but this is just the functional element of light – the darkness doesn't become light. Here darkness and light are comparable.
Then there is the next phase of light. This is avodah/work. The birur/refinement of darkness.
Even if a man stumbled on something in the darkness, he begins to apply neshama/soul qualities. He says, 'this thing did not make itself – it is too real. It too represents its Maker. There is an infinity in this physical thing, this is G-dliness not the object itself.
This is light in darkness. Light coming from the darkness. This shows the essential reality itself.
In light you see what it is about. You see why it is here. You see the Host. In darkness you don't have that – you see just the physicality. This is like the metaphor of the guests, the food and the host. The food has the taste and smell. But the presence of the host is what makes it real. He's just there. This is what we see in darkness, 'BUT IT IS A REAL PRESENCE' and then we see it gets that from its Host.