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Acquiring Torah 40: Ramchal: Derech Eitz haChaim VI

Consequently, man has had the duty of reflection imposed on him, for if he does not reflect an deliberate, wisdom will not come to seek him out, and he will remain in darkness without knowledge and walk in vain paths and gloom. Eventually he will have two account before the Supreme King, the Holy One, blessed is He, for having failed to make use of the power of wisdom with which He had endowed him in order to enable him to excel.


This is surely due to the enticement of the evil impulse, the Other Side, who makes every effort to defeat men both in this world and in the next, knowing full well that if man fails in this respect, he can scarcely repent and recover, since knowledge of the truth strengthens the soul and removes the evil impulse from it, and nothing weakens the soul in the face of the evil impulse so much as ignorance.

If only knowledge were wide and firm in the hearts of men, they would never sin, the evil impulse would not draw close enough to rule over them, just as it does not rule over the Angels.

Yet, since the Only One, Blessed is He, wished men to possess the evil impulse in order to have and even chance of being conquered by it or conquering it, he said knowledge among them, in closed like the live call and with the capacity to spread like the flame. (Ramchal; Derech Eitz Hachaim V)

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