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Excerpt from the Chabad

(Collection of Chassidic Jewish wisdom)[1]

Man and Woman

menoraIt is a mistake to consider man and woman two separate beings. They are no more than two halves of a single form, two converse hemispheres that fit tightly together to make a perfect whole. They are heaven and earth encapsulated in flesh and blood.

It is only that on its way to enter this world, this sphere was shattered apart. What was once the infinity of a perfect globe became two finite surfaces. What was once a duet of sublime harmony became two bizarre solos of unfinished motions, of unresolved discord. So much so, that each one hears in itself only half a melody, and so too it hears in the other. Each sees the other and says, "That is broken." Feigning wholeness, the two halves wander aimlessly in space alone.

Until each fragment allows itself to surrender, to admit that it too is broken. Only then can it search for the warmth it is missing. For the depth of its own self that was ripped away. For the harmony that will make sense of its song. And in perfect union, two finite beings find in one another infinite beauty. —1

Excerpt from the Zohar

(Sacred text of the Kabballah)

Male and Female This is the book of the generations of Adam. On the day that God created Adam, in the likeness of God He created him; Male and female He created them. He blessed them and called their name Adam On the day they were created (Genesis 5:1-2)

Rabbi Shim’on said “High mysteries are revealed in these two verses. 'Male and female He created them'” to make known the Glory on high, the mystery of faith. Out of this mystery, Adam was created. Come and see: With the mystery by which heaven and earth were created Adam was created. Of them it is written: “These are the generatons of heaven and earth” (Genesis 2:4).

Of Adam it is written: “This is the book of the generations of Adam.” Of them it is written” “on the day they were created.” "Male and female He created them." From here we learn Any image that does not embrace male and female is not a high and true image. We have established this in the mystery of our Mishnah.

Come and see: The Blessed Holy One does not place His abode In any place where male and female are not found together. Blessings are found only in a place where male and female are found, As it is written: “He blessed them and called their name Adam on the day they were created.” It is not written: “He blessed him and called his name Adam.” A human being is only called Adam When male and female are as one.2

Sage Advice

Most of a person’s drives are his biological impulses, which seek to be gratified. If you find yourself being attracted to do something, pause and lean a bit toward not doing it. That way you will maintain an even balance. —Rabbi of Rizhin, nineteenth-century Chassidic Sage

Return to Source Materials outline

  • 1. Lubavitcher Rebbe (Words and condensation by Tzvi Freeman)
  • 2. Zohar: the Book of Enlightenment by Daniel Chanan Matt, Paulist Press (1983): 55-56