Know this well: “Both Torah rabbinical authorities of antiquity and later ones have affirmed that, the majority of the great tribulations that humanity has suffered, be it plagues, hunger, or war, truly have come from the ‘transgressions of the brit’ [Pogem HaBrit]. Any and all mitzvot and good deeds that the person fulfills while his brit is blemished, all goes to the sitra achra, may G-d have mercy… As such, if a man wants do come e serve Hashem, he should first properly rectify the ‘spiritual stains’ of his brit [which have occurred through the ‘spilling of semen in vain’] and later initiate his avodat Hashem. All transgressions against the brit, and the evil events that proceed from that are in fact alluded to in the admonitions of parshat Bechucotai. And that which is written – ‘But if you will not listen to Me’ [Vayikra 26:14] and ‘If you will not do all these commandments’ [ibid.] – does not insinuate that these individuals do not fulfill any of the mitzvot or that they do not study Torah. What is implied here is that, although these individuals study Torah and fulfill mitzvot, the principal is missing, for the brit, which is the most important is stained, and they have not rectified it! And once the brit is blemished and has not been rectified, all [i.e., Torah and mitzvot] is considered as being void and non-existent” (R’ Ya’acov Abuchatzera, Pituchei Chotam al HaTorah, Bechucotai; see the Ari”zal, Sha’ar HaKavanot, chelek sheni, Iniyan Sucot, Derush 7, on the subject of oneg–nega). HaRav Ya’acov also explains that, “As it is written in the Zohar, the person that has no fear of sin on the subjects of the brit has no fear of G-d in anything that he does. This is so, for his body, which is what fulfills the commandments is stained. Hence, all that he does is also stained! [He affirms that] in accordance to the Kabbalah [Zohar 52b, Metzora], the pasuk, ‘Be afraid of the sword [a metaphor for the sexual organ]; for wrath brings the punishment of the sword, etc.’ [Iyov 19:29] refers to this [to wit, to the stains of the brit that cause severe Divine decrees to befall the person” (Ibid. Pituchei Chotam).
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