Let My People Know

"The whole concept of Paradise is that of a place where the proportions are perfect"


Imagine an arrangement of letters constituting a text and that this is given over to a band of children. 

Some of the children move the letters, either by chance or wanton playfulness, so that whatever was written can no longer be deciphered. 

In fact, the whole concept of Paradise is that of a place or an essence on earth where the proportions or arrangements are undisturbed, perfect and unpolluted by man. 

It is not a matter of human sin acting as pollution, but rather the misuse of human freedom, of free choice. 

Because in our freedom to choose, we, who do not know how to read, misplace the letters of Creation and put things in disorder. 

The task of mitzvot (commandments) of the Torah is to restore order, to arrange things to form a harmony and put every item in its proper place. 

Chasidism often conveyed this in the form of parable and story, as in the stories of Rabbi Nachman of Bratslav. 

In short, the world is not functioning properly because things are not where they should be, and the mitzvah is that which enables us to set a specific thing in its own place.

–Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz
From The Sustaining Utterance by Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz