The one who prays to Hashem Yitbarakh should hold the belief that, from the start, there was a cause brought about by the everlasting One, and that S/He is the source of all completions, and S/He created all the worlds at the time when it arose in Hir will.
Also, after S/He created them and S/He brought them into existence, creatio ex nihilo and the absolute void, S/He didn’t turn over the leading to any angel or planet. Instead, S/He is the One who is the bringer of life, and S/He guides all the creatures, including those residing in the highest of heights all the way to those residing in the depths of below, the One without measure or compare.
And with Hir awareness, S/He completes all of the causes that S/He began at the start.
And S/He is the only One, alone.
And S/He rules over all the angels and over all the planets and over all that is in nature. And they, all of them, are established and they carry out their actions through Hir power. For S/He is the Elohi“m / God, Shaper of the powers of all of them (Cf. Shulḥan Aruch Orach Chayyim 5:1).
And when S/He wants, S/He changes the directives of Hir servants, and it’s not in their hand, nor in the hand of anyone else besides Hir to help or to harm, for each and every one of them depend on Hir will, Hir oversight, Hir capacity and Hir knowledge. And S/He hears the request and prayer of every mouth that opens and prays to Hir, and S/He knows all the thoughts of their hearts and what they feel in their guts. And S/He oversees and weighs all the actions of each one according to the 13 Middot which are Hirs. And Hirs is the largesse and the strength and, everything is according to all the 13 Middot.
And, the origin of the roots of all influences on what happens is contained in the content of that which the children of Israel pray to Hir and the ways their hearts serve their parent in heaven. For S/He is first and last and everlasting and the only One and S/He oversees and S/He recompenses good to whomever observes Hir commandments and S/He punishes those who transgress Hir commandments.
This English translation, using a mix of traditional and non-traditional gender neutral pronouns, was first published on Gabbai Seth Fishman’s website, Jewish Renewal Hasidus on February 15th, 2016. This segment of Reb Zalman’s writing in Hebrew was first published in his work, Yishmru Daat: Hasidic Teachings of the Fourth Turning (Albion Andalus, 2013), p. 30.
“On Belief Held in the Act of Prayer by Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi (2013)” is shared through the Open Siddur Project with a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International copyleft license.