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THEMES of Featured Chasidic Masters Articles

The Founding First Fruits
The mitzvah of the First Fruits [in Hebrew, Bikurim] is done only with the Seven Holy Species native to Israel: wheat, barley, grapes, figs, pomegranates, olives and dates. These seven species correspond to the seven midot, which in turn correspond to the seven days of Creation and foundation of the world.
The Human Tree
The Torah compares human beings to trees. Our roots are the subconscious layers of the human psyche. The conscious personality of the human being is comparable to the tree's body. Our fruit is the impact we have on the lives of people around us; it embodies our ability to plant a seed in a fellow human being and see it sprout, grow and bear fruit.
Breaking Through
A fruit consists of the shell or peel, the fruit itself, and the seed contained within. The seed is the purpose of the fruit; it is the ability to regenerate and reproduce, representing a Jew's work in this world; to engage in the study of Torah and the performance of mitzvahs, as well as passing these values over to the next generation.
The Singular Tree
The Tree of Life has as many fruits as there are creatures (and moments) in the world. The Shechinah is its gardener and she daily plucks its ripened yield. Every spark (including our very own soul) will eventually mature into a fully mellowed fruit whose final (and coveted) milestone is to be eaten with delight by the holy Shechinah.