In Proverbs 11:30, we read an interesting statement regarding a Tsadiq's fruit being the Tree of Life.

Proverbs | Mishlei 11:30 states :

פְּֽרִי־צַ֖דִּיק עֵ֣ץ חַיִּ֑ים The fruit of a righteous man is the tree of life

Genesis | Bereishit 2:9 states :

וַיַּצְמַ֞ח יְהֹוָ֤ה אֱלֹהִים֙ מִן־הָ֣אֲדָמָ֔ה כָּל־עֵ֛ץ נֶחְמָ֥ד לְמַרְאֶ֖ה וְט֣וֹב לְמַֽאֲכָ֑ל וְעֵ֤ץ הַֽחַיִּים֙ בְּת֣וֹךְ הַגָּ֔ן וְעֵ֕ץ הַדַּ֖עַת ט֥וֹב וָרָֽע And YHVH Elohim caused to sprout from the ground every tree pleasant to see and good to eat, and the [Tree of The-Life] in the midst of the garden, and the Tree of The-Knowledge of good and evil.

  • Based on Mishlei 11:30 - Was the עֵ֤ץ הַֽחַיִּים֙ Ets HaChayim in Bereishit 2:9 a Tsadiq (from whom Adam was to learn wisdom)?
  • Is the wolf in Isaiah 11:6 actually Benjamin? Is the virgin in Exodus 22:15 actually Rebecca? Is the man in Job 1:1 actually Moses? Etc.
    – Alex
    Commented Mar 5, 2021 at 15:18
  • @Alex - Regarding your first response, Ibn Ezra comments on Yeshayahu 11:6 stating: "The wolf shall dwell, etc. The peace that will be in his days is now figuratively described." - Having offered an answer to your first response, would you have time to share an answer in response to: Based on Mishlei 11:30 - Was the עֵ֤ץ הַֽחַיִּים֙ Ets HaChayim in Bereishit 2:9 a Tsadiq? Commented Mar 5, 2021 at 15:28
  • Rather than answering your question, I am challenging it’s premise. There are many times in Scripture that the same term is used for discrete entities. If in the other places you don’t assume that Scripture means that the two entities ate one and the same, why assume that here?
    – Alex
    Commented Mar 5, 2021 at 16:44
  • @Alex - The challenge is accepting Proverbs 11:30 as a factual observation not a figurative metaphor. Without assumptions, can we deduce that Ets HaChayim was/is פְּֽרִי Pri (Wisdom) from a Tsadiq? Commented Mar 5, 2021 at 17:07

1 Answer 1


Per Prov. 11:30 Etz haChayim is the Torah, which is the fruit of the Tzadiq.

ל פְּרִי-צַדִּיק, עֵץ חַיִּים; וְלֹקֵחַ נְפָשׁוֹת חָכָם.
30 The tree of life is the fruit of the Tzadik; and the Chakham takes souls.

This is explained in Likutei Moharan II, Hosafot Manuscript #5.

... כי התגלות התורה בא מיחודא דאבא ואמא כ"ש שמע בני מוסר אביך ואל תטוש תורת אמך ויחודם מהעלאות נפשות ישראל בבחי' מיין נוקבין והחכם יכול ליקח הנפשות בבחי' ולוקח נפשות חכם ועי"ז היחוד נולד התורה שהיא עץ החיים וזה בחי' פרי צדיק עץ חיים ולוקח נפשות חכם וכשעולה החכם עם אלו הנפשות בבחי' עיר גבורים עלה חכם ואז ויורד עוז מבטחה ונפש זה בחי' רצון שכל אלו בני אדם הבאים לחכם הדור כל אחד ואחד יש לו איזהו רצון והצדיק לוקח כל הרצונות ועולה עמהם ואח"כ ויורד עוז מבטחה בבחי' והחיות רצוא ושוב רצוא בעליות הנפשות ושוב בחזרת הנפשות עם התגלות התורה ...

... For, revelation of the Torah comes of yichud of Aba and Ima, as written, "Hear, my son your father's tradition and forsake not your mother's Torah" (Prov. 1:8). And their unification is from the raisings of the Yisraelite souls, in the aspect of Mayin Nuqvin. And the Chakham is able to take the souls, in the aspect of (Prov. 11:30) "the chakham takes souls." And this yichud gives birth to the Torah, which is Etz haChayim. And this is the aspect of (ibid.), "The tree of life is the fruit of the Tzadik, and the Chakham takes souls." And when the chakham goes up with these souls in the aspect of (ibid. 21:22), "A Chakham raises a city of the mighty..." and then, "and brings down strength, the trust." And this soul is the aspect of ratzon, will, as all these people that come to the Chakham haDor, each and every one has some kind of ratzon. And the Tzadik takes all these ratzons and goes up with them. Then he comes down and "brings down strength, the trust." "And the Chayot run to and fro..." (Eze. 1:14). "Run" in the aspect of raising the souls, and "return" in bringing back the souls with revelation of the Torah. And ...

By the way, thus we see it's on purpose that Rabbi Nachman, held by his followers as the Tzadik haDor (Tzadik of the Era), and his followers, referred to his lessons as "Torahs." Chapters of Likutei Moharan are called Torah Alef, Torah Bet etc. Also he said "I know the source of the Torah from where it comes" etc. etc. Read sifrei Breslev and you will see much more.

Also we have Etz Chayim hi lamchazikim bah.. (Prov. 3:18) etc. etc.

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