Let My People Know

Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz: “The Torah as we have it is clothed in comprehensible words and concepts.”

The concept that the Ten Commandments comprise the totality of the Torah appears in particular in the liturgical poems of Rav Se’adya Gaon, where he traces the source of each mitzva in the Torah to the Ten Commandments. Rashi also comments (Ex. 24:12) that “all 613 mitzvot are included within the Ten Commandments.

The concealment of God’s countenance exists within creation, in the physical world.

Yet, within the Torah – God’s innermost will -there is no such concealment, as the Torah itself is a revelation of the countenance of God; it is the revelation of the innermost divine will.

Granted, the Torah as we have it is clothed in comprehensible words and concepts and can be apprehended by finite beings confined to the human body and corporeal world.

Nevertheless, this does not constitute a concealment of countenance; it is merely a translation from one language to another.

Although we do not detect the inner divine essence within the Torah revealed to us, nevertheless, the Torah neither distorts nor conceals; it functions solely as a direct translation of God’s innermost will and wisdom themselves.

Rabbi Adin Staeinsaltz