bs"d In honor of Rabi Natan's hilula today, yismach libi veyagel kevodi to publish for the first time the following Torah in English. In this merit may we merit to beard and pe'ot and all the sodot in them, the attainment of Torah and perception of Godliness and hamtakat dinim and so forth.
Hilkhot Giluach/Laws of Shaving
 Halakhah 1
The prohibition of shaving the peyot and the beard [zakan, same root as zaken/old/elder], according to what is written in the essay Meishra DeSakina/Bed of Knives in Likutei Moharan #30, that a person's hairs correspond to Chokhmah Tata`ah/the Lower Wisdom, which is the essence of perception [of the Torah] which corresponds to Malkhut/Kingship; see there. And it is necessary to draw life unto it. Therefore we must raise it to the Ohr HaPanim/Light of the Countenance [of God, as it were] which illuminates via three "legs" which correspond to binah-liba (understanding corresponds to the heart). And it is necessary to cut it off from the Four [Evil] Kingships which are the Sitra Achra/Other Side so that they will not feed from Chokhmah/Wisdom which corresponds to Malkhut as mentioned, which corresponds to daleit [the letter ד which can be read "de'leit," "which has not," for Malkhut has nothing of itself but only what it receives from the other Sefirot]. And this is accomplished via chesed/kindness/generosity, corresponding to Avraham. And chesed is revealed via tokhacha/rebuke/inspiration; see there.
איסור גילוח הפאות והזקן ע"פ מ"ש במאמר מישרא דסכינא סי' למ"ד שהשערות הם בחי' חכמה תתאה שהוא עיקר ההשגה שהוא בחי' מלכות ע"ש.. וצריך להמשמיך לה חים. ע"כ צרייכן להעלותה אל אור הפנים המאיר בג' רגלים שהם בחי' בינה לבא. וצריך לחתכה מן הד' מלכיות שהם הס"א שלא יהי' להם יניק' מן החכמה בחי' מלכות כנ"ל שהוא בחי' דלית וזה נעשה ע"י חסד בחי' אברהם והחסד נתגלה על ידי התוכחה עיין שם.
And behold, the peyot and the beard are the Ohr HaPanim/Light of the Face, Hadrat Panim/honoring the face, corresponding to attainment of wisdom, as is written, "Vehadarta penei zaken/And you shall give glory to the face of the elder," since the beard is the glorification of the face, Ohr Hapanim, which corresponds to Wisdom, as is written, "Chokhmat adam ta'ir panav/The wisdom of a man illuminates his face." For the beard corresponds to the Thirteen Midot [Dimensions] of Torah Exposition, as all this is brought in the words of Rabbeinu, see there, that they are the root of attaining wisdom. And therefore the beard and the peyot are hairs, because they correspond to perception of wisdom, since the essence of perception corresponds to hairs, which are Lower Wisdom, as written. And this is the aspect of the Thirteen Midot which correspond to the beard, as mentioned, that is, the aspect of measure and constriction for the Upper Intellect, as written there, which is the aspect of hair, aspect of shi`ura d'atvun d'oraita/dimensions of the letters of the Torah, which are aspect of midot. And therefore it is forbidden for pass a razor upon the beard and peyot because there [in them] is the root of life and length of days, which corresponds to the beard, as mentioned, and it is injust to wave a life-shortening object upon a life-lengthening one, as Chazal said regarding the altar. And therefore it is forbidden to cut and destroy them, for on the contrary, in them is the root of the ascents of the Lower Wisdom, for they are the Light of the Countenance as mentioned. And this is the two peyot and beard corresponding to three legs which are the Light of the Countenance as mentioned. For the two peyot are aspect of left and right and the beard is in the middle which is aspect of three legs which correspond to the Three Pariarchs who are right, left and center. And the main point of the Light of the Countenance is the beard, and it is the main point of attainment of wisdom. And by means of the two peyot which are aspect of right and left, which correspond to kindness and rebuke, for kindness is right and rebuke corresponds to stringencies, aspect of the left, through this we merit to the aspect of beard, aspect of the Light of the Countenance as mentioned and as written there. But the rest of the hairs even though they too correspond to the waste products of the brain, despite this because they are in the aspect of waste products, there is feeding of the Sitra Achra from them, for that is where they feed from mainly. And therefore when they grow long it is necessary to cut them, in the aspect of "cut him in four" [I Sam. 15:33 and Rashi there], in order to not give them sustenance from the Lower Wisdom which corresponds to dalet as mentioned. And therefore it is a big mitzvah to take a haircut on the eve of a Festival in order to cut it off from the Four Kingships, so that you can go up [to Yerushalayim] on the Three Festivals which are the Light of the Countenance as mentioned.
והנה הפאות והזקן הם אור הפנים הדרת פנים בחי' השגת החכמה כמ"ש והדרת פני זקן שהזקן הוא הדרת פנים אור הפנים שהוא בחי' החכמה כמ"ש חכמת אדם תאיר פניו. כי הזקן הוא בחי' שלש עשרה מדות שהתורה נדרשת בהן כמובא כל זה בדברי רבינו ע"ש שהם עיקר השגת החכמה. וע"כ הזקן והפאות הם שערות כי הם בחי' השגת החכמה שעיקר ההשגה הוא בבחי' שערות שהוא החכמה תתאה כמ"ש. וזה בחי' י"ג מדות שהם בחי' הזקן כנ"ל, היינו בחי' מדות וצמצומים להשכל העליון כמ"ש שם שזה בחי' שערות בחי' שיעורא דאתוון דאורייתא שהם בחי' מדות. וע"כ אסור להעביר תער על הזקן והפאות כי שם. עיקר החים והאריכות ימים שזה בחי' זקן כנ"ל ואינו בדין שיונף המקצר על המאריך כשחז"ל לענין מזבח. וע"כ אסור לחתכם ולהשחיתם כי אדרבה שם עיקר עליות החכמה תתאה כי הם אור הפנים כ"ל. וזה ב' פיאות וזקן כנגד ג' רגלים שהם אור הפנים כנ"ל. כי ב' הפאות הם בחי' ימין ושמאל והזקן באמצע שזה בחי' ג' רגלים שהם כנגד ג' אבות שהם ימין ושמאל ואמצע. ועיקר אור הפנים הוא הזקן והוא עיקר השגת החכמה. וע"י ב' הפאות שהם בחי' ימין ושמאל שזה בחי' חסד ותוכחה כי החסד הוא ימין והתוכחה הוא בחי' גבורות בחי' שמאל ועי"ז זוכין לבחי' זקן בחי' אור הפנים כנ"ל כנ"ל וכמ"ש שם. אבל כל שאר השערות אף שהם ג"כ בחי' מותרי מוחין עכ"ז מחמת שהם בבחינת מותרות יש בהם יניקה להס"א כי משם עיקר יניקתם. וע"כ כשנגדלין הרבה צריך לחתכם בבחי' חתכו לד' כדי שלא ליתן להם יניקה מן החכמה תתאה שהוא בחי' ד' כנ"ל. וע"כ. מצוה גדולה לגלח ערב הרגל כיד לחתכה מן הד' מלכיות כדי שתוכל לעלות בשלש רגלים שהם אור הפנים כנ"ל
 Halakhah 2
According to the essay "U'vyom habikurim/And on the day of the firstfruits -- ve'et ha`oravim tziviti lekhalkelekha/I have commanded the ravens to feed you" in Likutei Moharan II #4; take a good look there. For we need to make a vessel and channel to receive the chesed/kindness, and this is accomplished by yir'ah/awe [of God]. And awe is accomplished by ratzon/[holy] desire. And desire is accomplished mainly be connecting to the root of desire which corresponds to metzach haratzon/"the forehead of the [holy] desire." And opposite this there is the aspect of the metzach hanachash/"the forehead of the serpent" which is the opposite of the desire. And the metzach hanachash feeds mainly from the elders of the generation who are not complete, for they do not add holiness and knowledge to their days the whole time that they grow older, etc., see there. But tzedakah/charity alleviates this; see there. And this aspect of "shortness of days, full of anger" that is from the blemish of the beards/elders [zekenim] which is aspect of shortness of days -- from this feeds the metzach hanachash which is the aspect of anger, opposite of desire. But via the beard/elder of holiness we merit to desire, aspect of "zaken venaso-panim/the elder and the man of rank (lit. raised face)" (Isa. 9:14); panim/face corresponds to desire; take a good look there.
1. And therefore the Torah warned us to not destroy the the corners of the beard (peyot hazaken), God forbid. And the prohibition is mainly with a razor specifically. Because the hairs of the beard correspond the days of oldness, tangibly. For the hairs of the beard are very supernal and lofty lights which have been constricted in the aspect of hairs which are like pipes and constrictions. And this corresponds to days, for days are an aspect of constrictions and dimensions, as brought. And therefore as long as a man ages one day of his life he needs to add more holiness and knowledge each day in order to merit to illuminate light and knowledge on this day. And this is the aspect of hairs, tangibly. And therefore we need to not damage, God forbid, or destroy the corner of the beard, God forbid, in order to not blemish the aspect of the beard, to not give sustenance, God forbid, to the aspect of the metzach hanachash/Forehead of the Serpent, which feeds off of the fallenness of the days of agedness, which is tangibly the waste and falling of the beard's hairs, for the hairs of the beard are aspect of the days of agedness, as mentioned. And the main prohibition is with a razor, which is like a sword, which cuts down the days, because the sword was created to cut down the days of a man, and it is injust for it to wave over that which lengthens which is the holy beard which is aspect of length of days as mentioned. For the razor and sword are the aspect of Esav who was blessed with this, as is written, "And by your sword shall you live," and it cuts down the days of a man. For the main shortening of the days of a man God forbid is when he does not add holiness and knowledge each day of his life, as mentioned. And this happens, God forbid, via Esav who is the Samech-Mem who incites the man away from the ways of life and shortens his days thereby, God forbid, as mentioned. And therefore he was blessed with the sword, which shortens the days of a man, as our Rabbis obm explained. And by this itself that he shortens the days of a man God forbid, that is, that he restrains and incites a man from adding holiness to his days as mentioned, by this itself Esav who is aspect of the metzach hanachash gets sustenance, aspect of anger, opposite of [holy] desire, the grip of judgement. For he is aspect of `Amalek who descended from him, who is aspect of metzach hanachash, the root of the naturalistic sophistry, the grip of the overcoming of heresy. For the root of apostasy and heresy is the aspect of Amalek, as brought in the words of Rabbeinu z"l. Hence Esav-Amalek is aspect of shortness of days, filled with anger, for he is aspect of the sword, aspect of the sword of the samekh-mem, who shortens days physically and spiritually, as mentioned. And by this itself he feeds, being aspect of anger, aspect of metzach hanachash, the root of naturalistic sophistry, the opposite of holy will, God forbid. And therefore the prohibition of destroying the beard is mainly with the razor which is like a sword, for it is only justice to not wave the [life-]shortening thing upon the lengthening thing. Because the main prohibition of destroying the beard is in order to not give God forbid sustenance to the metzach hanachash from blemish of the falling of the days of elderness which corresponds to destroying the hairs of the beard as mentioned. And therefore the main prohibition is with a razor or sword for by this a person blemishes very, very much, God spare us. For he destroys the holy beard via a razor or sword and gives, God forbid, sustenance to the razor or sword which is the aspect of Esav, aspect of metzach hanachash from the falling of the hairs of the beard God forbid. And therefore the main prohibition is with a razor, for this is the main blemish, to not give sustenance God forbid to the aspect of razor or sword which is the aspect of anger, aspect of metzach hanachash from the falling of the hairs of the beard as mentioned.
2. And by this is the made clear and revealed to the eye of an intelligent person that it is because of this that the sophistry of philosophy and heresy overcame exceedingly in the lands of Germany and their likes, for due to our many sins they were taken captive in the homelands of the Accuser and became widely accustomed in this great sin of destroying the corners of the beard. And in truth according to the [kabbalistic] writings and books of holiness, even destruction by other methods permitted by law is also a very, very tremendous blemish, God spare us; the Merciful One save us from that punishment. For all the hairs of the beard are very supernal and lofty and awesome pipes, and there is no one who can conceive and grasp in his mind the astounding loftiness of the holiness of the holy beard, and vice-versa it is unfathomable, God spare us, the punishment of one who destroys and raises his hand and spoils such a lofty holiness. But due to our many sins, over the length of time many of them have broken through the fence, and they transgress five negative commandments boldly and they destroy the beard with an actual razor. Woe for their souls! For evil has been payed abundantly upon them, and by means of this the naturalistic sophistry becomes strong there. For the metzach hanachash which is the root of the naturalistic sophistry feeds from the falling of the beard, as mentioned; understand.
3. And this is the aspect of the prohibition rounding the pe'ah/corner-hairlock of the head. And the pe'ot are essentially next to the padachat which is the metzach/forehead. For the pe'ot are aspect of yir'ah/awe [of God] for pe'ah is gematria of Elokim which corresponds to yir'ah as it says, "et ha'Elohim yir'a/fear God" (Eccl. 12:13), and the root of yir'ah is by way of the desire, as mentioned. And therefore we let the pe'ot grow next to the forehead because from the aspect of the forehead of the desire, which is the root of the desire, issues forth awe which is the aspect of pe'ot as mentioned. But in order that God forbid the metzach hanachash, which is the root of the naturalistic sophistry, not overcome, which picks up a blemish and apostasy even at the root of the desire, at the metzach haratzon as mentioned, therefore we need to let the corner of the beard grow and not destroy it God forbid in order that the metzach hanachash not overcome, God forbid, as mentioned. But via the holy beard the revelation of the desire overcomes, for the metzach hanachash is suppressed and the metzach haratzon overcomes, the root of the ratzon and then we merit to awe which are the pe'ot that are next to the forehead as mentioned. And this is the aspect of the prohibition of shaving the pe'ot and the beard, which are one from one concept, for they are interdependent, as metnioned. And therefore the entire Judaism depends on this. For this is the main course of the Yisraelites and our main work, that we merit to reach the aspect of "ve`amedu zarim u're`u tzo'nchem/and strangers shall stand and feed your flocks" etc. (Isa. 61:5) That is, that we should not need to be involved in any business of this world, only in the service of Hashem all day. And this is impossible unless His mercy is abounds upon us, the aspect of "ve'atem kohanei Hashem tikarei'u/and you shall be called the priests of Hashem" (ibid. 6). And it is impossible to receive the kindness except through yir'ah, and the awe is accomplished by the desire, through the aspect of the forehead of the desire etc., as all this is explained in the essay mentioned above; take a good look there. And therefore the root of Judaism depends on the pe'ot and the beard, because through this the aspect of the desire is revealed, through the aspect of the beard as mentioned, aspect of the "zaken venaso-panim/ the elder/beard and the man of rank (lifted face)" as mentioned. And when we merit to awe then automatically the kindness is bestowed. For the kindness is always being bestowed abundantly, only we need a vessel and channel to receive the kindness, as explained there; see there. Hence via the beard and peyot we merit to awe and then we merit to receive the bounty of kindness and then we do not need to be involved in any business, for the world is sustained by His kindness. And then we can be involved in the service of Hashem all day. And this is our main longing of Yisrael, to reach this. And therefore the essence of Judaism depends on the beard and peyot as mentioned. See the essay "u'v'yom habikurim" mentioned above; take a good look at the whole essay.
 Halakhah 3
"Lo takifu pe'at roshechem, velo tashchit et pe'at ziknekha/You shall not round the corners of your head, and you shall not destroy the corners of your beard" (Lev. 19:27). According to the essay Meishra deSakina etc in Likutei Moharan #30; see the entire essay from beginning to end.
1. And this is the aspect of the prohibition of shaving the pe'ot and the beard which are hairs adjacent to the face. For the Malkhut/Kingship, the Chokhmah Tata'ah/Lower Wisdom mentioned in that essay corresponds to heairs, aspect of shi`ura de'atvun de'oraita/dimensions of the letters of the Torah, as thoroughly explained in that essay, through which hairs which are aspect of constrictions we can attain perceptions of His Blessed Divinity. And therefore it is prohibited to destroy the hairs of the beard and the pe'ot which are the hairs closest to the face. Because the main life of the Malkhut/Kingship which is the aspect of Chochmah Tata`ah/Lower Wisdom is from the Light of the Face which shines in the three Legs as mentioned. And therefore via the hairs which are close to the Light of the Face which are the pe'ot and beard, through them is drawn down the main wisdom and the constriction of the perception of His Blessed Divinity, because the main life of the Malkhut, Chochmah Tata'ah is the aspect of the hairs which is the Light of the Face as mentioned. And this is the aspect of the beard and two pe'ot corresponding to the three Legs in which the Light of the Face shines.
2. And therefore the essence of the Yisraelite religion and the root of Judaism depends on the beard and the pe'ot, and by them is a Jew recognized, "...that [he] is from the seed that Hashem has blessed" (Isa. 61:9), from the seed of Yisrael. And whoever has a "different spirit with him," God forbid, and wants to deny, God forbid, the God of Yisrael, the start of his denial is casting, God forbid, the beard and the pe'ot off of him. For in truth the whole Yisraelite religion depends on the beard and the pe'ot, for all the words of our holy Torah and all the mitzvot are all an aspect of constrictions for perceiving His Blessed Divinity, as explained in that essay. For each and every letter and word of our holy Torah, Written Torah and Oral Torah and each mitzvah and each kosher custom of Yisrael the holy and chosen people, are all dimensions and constrictions through which they merit to attain perceptions of His Blessed Divinity, each one according to what he fits in his heart, according to what he merits via his service and effort in Torah and mitzvot and good deeds, and separation from the bad. And all these constrictions and dimensions, aspect of dimensions of the letters of the Torah, they are all aspect of hairs as mentioned, and they are all drawn down from the hairs of the Holy Face [so to speak] and Its pe'ot. For each and every hair of the pe'ot and of the Holy Glorious Face are all aspects of lofty channels and holy constrictions from which all the wisdom of the Torah and the mitzvot are drawn down, through which we perceive His Blessed Divinity. For the thirteen tikunim/"states of perfection" of the Holy Beard correspond to the Thirteen Attributes of Torah exegesis which are the entirety of the holy Torah. Woe for he who touches, God forbid, to destroy one hair of the holy beard and the pe'ot with contempt in his soul and with malice and with treachery! Woe for him and woe for his soul! for he uproots himself and his soul from the God of Yisrael and has no portion in Torat Moshe! Woe for their souls for evil has been recompensed upon them! And because of that, due to our very many sins, the sophistry of philosophy and heresy has become widespread in Germany and its surroundings, for they have completely thrown the yoke of the kingship of Heaven off of them in these generations, and cast off their beards and most of the pe'ot and go dressed in the others' clothing, etc. as mentioned. For it is made clear in that essay that sometimes the Malkhut-Chokhmah Tata'ah falls among the Four [Evil] Kingships. And this is the aspect of the "shout of a ruler among fools," that the Malkhut shouts out in a bitter voice, that the Wisdom has fallen amongst the fools, that the fool wants to "be wise," that is, that they want to overcome, God forbid -- via their external wisdoms, which are the philosophy and heresy which are truthfully foolishness, by means of the Chokhmah Tata'ah having fallen -- the aspect of the Malkhut in exile, etc. And therefore when they destroy their beards in Germany, by this they blemish in the constrictions of perceptions of His Blessed Divinity mentioned above, in Lower Wisdom, in Kingship as mentioned. And therefore through this, God forbid, the outside wisdoms are strengthened, which are the wisdoms of philosophy. And therefore they are involved there in the external wisdoms exceedingly, by destroying the corners of their beards with contempt in their souls and transgressing five Torah prohibitions each time. For they are interdependent, as mentioned -- external wisdoms via destruction of the corners of the holy beard as mentioned. But in truth they do not transgress only five prohibitions. For when they destroy the corners of their beard it is as if they transgress the whole entire Torah. For the whole entire Torah depends on this, as mentioned. For via the razor and the knife that they raise upon the holy beard to destroy it, God forbid -- through this, God forbid, the kingship of `Amalek overcomes, who is the entirety of the Four [Evil] Kingdoms, as mentioned in the aforementioned essay. For Amalek is from the seed of wicked Esav, who feeds from the aspect of "ve`al charbekha tichyeh/and by your sword you shall live" (Gen. 27:40), whose main feeding is when the Lower Wisdom is blemished, the Kingship mentioned above, which is the aspect of "cherev nokemet nekam-brit/the sword that avenges the vengeance of the Covenant" (Lev. 26:25), as explained in that essay. And this is the aspect of, "Cut him in four" [I Sam. 15:33 and Rashi there] mentioned there in that essay. For the main elevation and repair of the Kingship is via repair of the holy sword through which we cut off the Malkhut which is aspect of dalet from the Four [Evil] Kingships in the aspect of "Cut him in four" and subjugate the sword of Esav who is the Kingship of `Amalek, aspect of "And by your sword you shall live," as mentioned. But when someone raises, God forbid, a razor or knife -- which is the aspect of a sword -- upon the holy beard, he blemishes very, very severely in the Kingship of Holiness, which results in the "sword that avenges the vengeance of the Covenant," the main feeding of which is from the Light of the Face, from the aspect of the hairs of the beard and the pe'ot as mentioned, and God forbid, the sword of Esav overcomes, the aspect of the Kingship of `Amalek who is the entirety of the Four Kingships. And they came to all this through blemishing the Covenant [of Abraham, i.e. they cast away circumcision, family purity (taharat hamishpachah), etc.] first, for surely no man raises his hand to destroy the corner of his beard, God forbid, unless he first blemishes the holy Covenant exceedingly much, through which he blemishes in the brain, in the Lower Wisdom mentioned, and evil thoughts carry on inside him, external wisdoms, until the evil spirit beguiles him to destroy his beard, God forbid, through which he uproots himself completely from the Kingship of Holiness, from Lower Wisdom, from the perception and faith of Yisrael, and has no portion in Hashem Yitbarakh and His holy Torah and in His holy people Yisrael, as mentioned.
3. But the root of the kindness, through which we sever the Kingship from the Four [Evil] Kingships as mentioned is drawn down by means of rebuke, for via rebuke, kindness is revealed. And the rebuke is according to the Torah and the prayer of each and every person, according to the boldness of each and every one, etc, as all this is well explained in that essay. And all this is included in the holy beard. For "se`arot dedikna kashishim le'achpashah ledinim/the hairs of the beard are coarse in order to subdue harsh judgements," as explained in the holy Zohar. And this is the aspect of the `azut dikedushah/holy brazenness mentioned, corresponding to `az vekasheh/bold and hard, through which is the main attainment of the Torah and prayer, which are included in the holy beard. For the entirety of the Torah that we renew is the Thirteen Attributes of Mercy as our Rabbis obm said, that HaKadosh Barukh Hu "wrapped himself" and taught Moshe the order of prayer, and then revealed to him the Thirteen Attributes of Mercy, etc. For the root of prayer is mercy and pleading, to arouse the Thirteen Attributes of His Blessed Mercy which are included in the thirteen tikunei dikna/states of perfection of the beard, as known. And by means of this, by means of the Torah and prayer which are according to the boldness of each person, the elder who sits in yeshivah knows how to lehokhiach/rebuke/inspire each and every person and open his mouth in wisdom, in the aspect of "piah potchah bechokhmah/she opens her mouth in wisdom" etc. For all the tikunei dikna surround the holy mouth, and the revelation of the channels of the holy wisdom of the beard of holiness, aspect of the elder sitting in yeshivah is revealed only through the holy mouth through which is the root of revelation of all the wisdom that is drawn down via channels of the hairs of the pe'ot and beard. And via revelation of this wisdom of rebuke, mercy is drawn down, through which we raise up the Malkhut from the exile of the four [Evil] Kingships and raise it to the Light of the Face which shines in the Three Legs. Which is aspect of "Malkhut `olah `ad hadikna kadisha/Kingships rises up to the holy beard" which is the Light of the Face. For perception of His blessed Godliness which is revelation of His holy Kingship is via many constrictions. And each and every constriction is aspect of Malkhut from a higher world and level. For the Lower Wisdom, aspect of Malkhut in the world of Atzilut is above and much higher than the Upper Wisdom that is in the world of Beriah. And when we need to raise up the Malkhut/Chokhmah Tata'ah from the exile we need to arouse and drawn down an illumination from the root of the Malkhut. That is, from the aspect of Malkhut/Chokhmah Tata'ah that is in the root the upper worlds. And by this you will understand and be enlightened a little bit of the clues in that essay. For raising the Malkhut from the four mentioned is via prayer which is the root of Malkhut as explained in another place. And therefore the main remedy of raising the Malkhut is via the holy beard which is aspect of Light of the Face. For the holy beard is also drawn from the aspect of constrictions, from the aspect of Malkhut that is in very, very high and lofty worlds, as explained in Etz Chayim, that the lights of the beard are drawn down from the two pe'ot which are aspect of Elokim, gematria of pe'ah, aspect of Malkhut as explained there. Understand this well.
... to be continued b"n