Let My People Know

Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz: “For the sake of serving God.”

The animal soul does not imply the degradation of man to the level of animals but is the definition of man as an animal: a higher form of animal as the donkey is higher than the worm but no different inherently.

Just as the animal soul itself is neither good nor evil, so are its thoughts, speech, and deeds, whether sophisticated or simple, elevated or base, whether connected with essential needs or mere desires.

These deeds, if they do not constitute the fulfillment of a mitzvah or are not done for the sake of serving God, are, like the animal soul itself, of the realm of kelipah.

–Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz