Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Rambam- Relationship With G-D- 2nd perek of Yesodei Hatorah halacha 1

The Rambam opens up the second perek of Yisodei Hatorah by discussing another fundamental commandment. He says,

האל הנכבד והנורא הזה מצוה לאהבו וליראה אותו שנאמר ואהבת את ה' אלהיך. ונאמר את ה' אלהיך תירא:
"G-D, the honorable and awesome, has a commandment to love Him and fear Him as it says, 'And you shall love G-D, your lord.' Also, it says, 'G-D, your lord, you shall fear.'" 

This introductory halacha holds the foundation to this entire perek. The Rambam is going to discuss what real love of G-D is all about. Also, it is important to understand what true awe of G-D is and not just a superficial type of fear.

Interestingly, the Rambam refers to G-D as the honored one and the awesome one. I think he does this to point out that a being that is honorable and awesome inherently requires one's fear and love. A king that is just and acts properly incites within his subjects the urge to give him love and awe. For example, just the mention of Dovid Hamelech's name stirs within people awe and love for the progenitor of the king Moshiach.

G-D is just and, as the Rambam dicussed in the first perek, He is pure truth. A being that is pure truth does not even have to command one to love Him and be in awe of Him, but rather it is a feeling that one who connects to this being will inherently feel. However, G-D gave us this commandment in order to draw us near to Him. This is why I think the Rambam opens up this perek, the perek that discusses love and awe of G-D, in this fashion.

No comments: