The Ba'al Teshuvah and the Geir
The Ba'al Teshuvah (returnee or penitent) and the Geir (convert) approaches Judaism in a totally different manner than the Tzadik (pious person or righteous individual).
The Tzadik is at ease with the observance of Mitzvot (commandments) and the study of Torah. The every day practice of Judaism is an environment in which he finds himself at home. His religious realm is quiet and smooth going.
The Ba'al Teshuvah and the Geir on the other hand comes back to Judaism from a great distance; as she or he follows the path of return, they find themselves wedged uncomfortably between two worlds, the mundane and the holy: their former ways from which they gradually strip themselves away from, and the new Torah lifestyle which they are attempting to embrace. Understandably, the process is one of considerable friction and difficulty, which could be described as a noisy and turbulent journey.
When the High Priest entered the Sanctuary, the Tabernacle or the Temple, he did so on behalf of all the Jewish people: both those who were naturally pious and those who were still struggling to come closer to Judaism. Therefore, his robe made a distinctive sound, to remind him that he was representing even the noisy and turbulent Jew.
Since this was the High Priest's responsibility, his life was dependent upon it, as the verse states: "its sounds should be heard when he enters the Holy Place before G-d, and when he leaves, so that he shall not die." (Exodus 28:35)
For the same reason, according to Rashi, the "pomegranate" shapes were also attached to the High Priest's robe, since the pomegranate represents the distant Jew, the Ba'al Teshuvah and the Geir. This is quite indicative of Rashi, as Rashi's commentary was written for all Jews, even the pomegranates among us.
Ramban, however, who included the deeper mystical ideas in his commentary proposed that "apples"were the shapes on the High Priest's robe rather than "pomegranates." For the the "apple" alludes to the concept of spiritual perfection, which Kabbalistically speaking is the true inner identity of every person.
Chumashi Parashat Tzeteveh