One of my favorite concepts (if one is allowed to have favorites) is ein sof (or ein od, or ein od milvado).

A rosh yeshiva and mashpia once told me that when you say "echad" in the shema, you should envision the godliness in everything.

Yet at the end of the havdalah recitation, H' is blessed for making a separation between the sacred and the profane. In the language of math set theory, the universal set is divided into the sacred and, its compliment, the profane.

(I don't think the subsequent distinctions are of the same genre.)

I could understand how one could look at things as either or. But why is H' blessed for engendering that distinction.


  • 2
    maybe it refers to creating that division in our world which then allows us the z'chus of elevating things from the profane to the sacred. Without the initial distinction, what reward would we earn?
    – rosends
    Feb 28, 2021 at 16:17
  • @rosends Not to refute what you say, but just a counter-argument. First, if you extrapolate, then existence is a deliberate set of obstacles. More relevant, that might preclude the opportunity to do something for its own sake (i.e., Torah study).
    – user24795
    Feb 28, 2021 at 20:01
  • The others are extensions of the separation between sacred and mundane, specific examples, if you will.
    – Esther
    Mar 1, 2021 at 2:46

1 Answer 1



In the deeper meanings of chassidus (don't have exact pages but it's in Torah Ohr and Likutei Torah) it says that hawvdawluh is actually that which "connects" Shabbos into the week itself, the word "brocho" means to "draw down" or "plant", so when we make a "brocho" over Hashem separating the holy from the profane, that is actually asking Hashem to make a "brocho", a "planting" or "connection", between the holy and opposite, in order that even the profane would be permeated with holiness

As for "there is nothing besides for Him", the profane is only talking about the external surface level, like "one who throws over the back of his shoulders to gotta enemies", (see Tanya at length), and even that is only relative to us, but relative to Hashem "there is nothing besides for Him", see Tanya section 2 specifically

Blessings and success

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