melting the fleshpot

The Mikdash Melech on the Zohar (179b) in the beginning of Parashath Vayeshev makes an interesting point: The Yetzer Hara, the evil inclination, only has control over the body. This explains why from the moment of birth, the Yetzer Hara challenges a person.

The Baal HaTanya who points out (I think in ch.3(?)) that the Beinoni, the person who serves God sincerely but does not eliminate his Yetzer Hara, associates his self with his body and says, "the soul which you placed within me."Conversely the Tzaddik's relationship to his body is "the flesh of man," in other words, he is his soul, and his flesh is a garment he wears.

Taken together it flows really nicely. As long as we associate our selves with our bodies the Yetzer Hara holds sway over us. When we recognize that our flesh is a temporary garment, the Yetzer Hara loses his grip.


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