After G-d graced us with intellect (4th
blessing) and the capability of using it with the eyes of our mind (5th
blessing), of what use is it all if it stays in our mind without finding expression
in our emotions, the primary motivating factor for our behavior [emotion begets
The sixth blessing is the drumbeat, the beginning of the
march onto the battlefield of the emotions.
atah ... matir asurim."
"Blessed are you,
L-rd our G-d, King of the universe,
who releases the bound."
we are asleep it is as if our arms are tied; likewise our emotions lie dormant.
The struggle to move when we first awaken parallel our emotional struggle to begin
to resist and overcome our negative inclinations. Even though the mind is apparently
free, the emotions, our organs of interaction with the environment, are "bound
up." Blessing #6 indicates the process of freeing ourselves.
person wakes up, immediately after opening his eyes he stretches his arms and
arches his back. So, also, each day as we regain the ability to "see"
our position clearly, we channel this consciousness into our emotions, which correspond
to the arms and torso of the human body.
Rabbi Shaul Leiter is
the executive director
This series is translated and adapted from Meah Shearim
and other sources