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Hallel: Rosh Chodesh Iyar: Approaching Again: Paragraph Four

The early masters asked why prayer was ordained, since God knows everything that man will request. We find in the Zohar that the Infinite Being does not have any representation whatsoever, even through the simplest point. The question immediately arises: How can we call Him by so many names, and speak of Him with so many descriptions? How can we make use of so many representations when praying to God?


The Zohar also provides us with an answer, stating that, “He is called loving and merciful, in order that He might make Himself known.” When we want God to have mercy on us, then, as it were, He constricts His essence into the word “Merciful,” into the lights and vessels of the letters making up the word.

The man of the Great Assembly new the transmission of Godly life force that is necessary at all times. They therefore composed an order of worship, containing all the words and letters necessary to transmit this life force. God granted them the wisdom to do this, and everything in the worship service is thus calculated with great accuracy.

One question still remains. How does the transmission of life force depend on our speech and prayer?

It is written, “From my flesh, I shall see God (Joel but 19:26).” By understanding the human body, we can also understand more of God’s ways.

Man is filled with life force and breath, but it is diffused inside him. When he wishes to speak, he must constrict this breath through his larynx, modulating it with his throat, pallet, lips, tongue and teeth. Only then can he express his desires. Only then can his speech, voice and wisdom he communicated. He can do this because his life force, wisdom and voice are constricted in his speech.

When a righteous person stands in prayer, he certainly attaches his thoughts and life force to the Infinite Essence, which is absolute, formless Unity. When he begins to speak, he transmits the Creator’s life force into his words and speech. As these leave his lips, they are very strongly bound to his breath and life force, constricted into this sounds that he expresses.

Then it is as if, as it were, the Infinite Essence is bounded to this person’s breath and life force, and so is modulated and constricted in his expression of words. (Maggid of Mezerich; Maggid Devarav L’Yaakov 269)

How could the people traveling from Egypt toward Sinai during that first Iyar possibly find the words to thank God? We acknowledge that we must use the life force God has given us to praise and thank Him:

“What can I respond to God for all the good He has given to make me independent?

I will lift up the cup of salvation and I will call out in God’s Name.

I will fulfill my promises to God in front of all His nation.

Death to His pious ones is precious in God’s eyes.

Please God, allow me to be Your servant.

I am Your worker, the son of Your maidservant,

You unlocked my chains.

I will bring an offering of thanks to You, and I will call out in the Name of God.

I will fulfill my promises to God in front of all His nation.

In the courtyards of God’s House, in the center of Jerusalem.


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