As taught to Rabbi Chaim Vital by Rabbi Isaac Luria and Amended by Rabbi Chaim's Son Shemuel.
Translated from Sha'ar Hagilgulim by Yitzchok bar Chaim; commentary by Shabtai Teicher of Blessed Memory and Completed by Rabbi Perets Aurback.
Published online with commentary by Kabbala online.com
This version will not have all of the commentary.
Please note: The publisher explains that the Study of Kabbalistic Texts usually recommends that one review the material many times until they are familiar with the vocabulary at a minimum.
Also Note: Bold Text represents the translation of the original Text. Regular text represents the commentary and explanation of the translator. Chanoch's comments will be identified separately.
Translation from Sha'ar Hagilgulim by Yitzchok bar Chaim; commentary by Shabtai Teicher
Chapter 18 Section 1
We have already discussed the Four Worlds and the order ABY"A [Atzilut, Beriya, Yetzira, and Asiya].
Each world contains its own set of four. This goes on Ad Infinitum.
Each world contains its own set of four. For example, within the world of Atzilut, Abba is called "Atzilut," Imma is called "Beriya," Zeir Anpin is called "Yetzira," and Nukva is called "Asiya." It is the same in each world.
Each world has its own ten sefirot that divide into their respective partzufim. When looking at the whole picture - relative to each other - Atzilut expresses the partzuf of Abba, Beriya of Imma, Zeir Anpin of Yetzira, and Nukva of Asiya.
However, the level of Arich Anpin is quite hidden and not referred to.
It draws from Keter, the highest sefira, which is too lofty to be revealed. Likewise, Adam Kadmon and yechida, the corresponding world and soul level, are hidden and rarely even mentioned. (Eitz Chayim, Shaar Adam Kadmon)
Neshamot come from the level of Atzilut, ruchin kadishin [holy spirits] from the level of Beriya, [standard] angels from the level of Yetzira, and ofanim [wheel angels] come from the level of Asiya.
Man below contains all the worlds, and in the beginning he receives the Nefesh of Asiya. If he does not merit Ruach [the rung above] because of a transgression that blemished his Nefesh, and as a result of his actions he entered the kelipot, then they say to him, "The fly preceded you [in creation; it was made on day five, man on day six. so as to keep man ever humble] and [moreover] is better than you!" (Sanhedrin 38a). This is because the fly does not do anything to blemish Above and does not enter the kelipot.
Just as the fly is a pest to man, so is man a nuisance to the world when he sins.
Just as the fly is a pest to man, so is man a nuisance to the world when he sins. Transgression existentially places the soul in the realm of the sitra achra, Conversely, one who fulfills God's will automatically ascends to attain higher soul levels.
However, if he does not sin or blemish his Nefesh, then he will be on the level of the ofanim.
Ofanim is the plural form of ofan, which means wheel. These angels are so called because they are the lowest level in the Divine chariot and through them the higher angels act. They are thus to the chariot as wheels. The Divine chariot is the spiritual mechanism that G-d uses to transmit His will to the universe. The Nefesh, like the ofanim, is like the 'wheels' of one's being.
The underlying reasons behind the actions are not revealed to the wheel. Wheels are steered; the driver decides and does the steering. The Ruach is in the driver's seat. One who nullifies himself and fulfills G-d's will without understanding merits a Ruach and graduates to the level of knowing why G-d does through him what He does. We see in many places from the Zohar and Ari that everyone is supposed to strive to attain Ruach.
A person might only merit his Nefesh and yet he can be more important and special than one who already has his Ruach.
That is, the Nefesh or even Ruach of the general Ruach.
This is because, as we have explained, each world incorporates four [levels], and that even the Nefesh of Asiya has the levels of NR"N and Neshama of Neshama [chaya].
Thus, the four levels of Asiya are only called Nefesh in general.
Hence, if the person happens to be from the Neshama of Asiya and has begun rectification, then the level of the Neshama of the general Ruach of Yetzira will shine within him.
Since he is from the level of the Neshama, it is that level in every world that he must rectify. Having already begun rectification on one level can activate the next level.
This applies even though it has yet to become completely enclothed within him, for, as we have already taught, it is impossible for the Ruach of Yetzira to be completely enclothed in a person until he has rectified his Nefesh in all portions of Asiya completely. Nevertheless, it can shine within him.
Striving for something above where one presently is, grants a connecting cable to it.
Striving for something above where one presently is, grants a connecting cable to it. This provides light and energy to enjoy even before one actually fully attains it.
A person can be from the Nefesh of Asiya, and also have a Nefesh of Yetzira, called the "Nefesh of Ruach" as mentioned. This person is certainly on a lower level than the first.
This is material that we have covered earlier yet there is some new aspects being revealed. Each level of a world communicates with the same level in other worlds. This is a very important spiritual law that is often not explained or utilized by individuals. We need to understand its use and its limitations. This will be explained later.
[Translation and commentary by Perets Auerbach.]
Chapter 18 Section 2
One who arises to Atzilut takes a quantum leap.
A person can also achieve until the Nefesh of Atzilut, that is, the malchut of Atzilut...
Atzilut is a world that is all Divinity. One who arises to it takes a quantum leap.
...and even higher than all the levels of Atzilut.
A human being of flesh and blood can ascend to ever infinitely higher levels of G-dliness!
If a person merits Ruach from yesod of Atzilut then he will be called "Ish Elokim" (Psalms 90:1) [lit. Man of God - The Torah uses this term in reference to Moses. According to how much one emulates Moses, one can merit to draw the awesome level of Ruach of Zeir Anpin of Atzilut and be a G-dly person on whom the Shechinah rests, and merit constant access to Divine inspiration.] "husband of the Matroness'" (Zohar)
Regarding him it says, "A Tzadik rules upon the fear of the L-rd". (Samuel II 23:3)
The Rabbis learn from this that "G-d decrees, and the tzadik [can nonetheless nullify it]. The tzadik decrees, and G-d fulfills [it]". (Moed Katan 16b) G-d willingly grants the tzadik this awesome power measure for measure. Because he ruled over his own desire and nullified himself to G-d, G-d in turn as if nullifies Himself to the tzadik.
The root level through which the 'husband of the mistress' gives to his wife is our present topic sefira - yesod of Atzilut. It is clothed primarily in Joseph. He therefore is the grand example of "tzadik rules over fear of the L-rd". Thus we see that Pharaoh gave him rulership over all of Egypt. (Gen. 41:40-44) In addition, there were cases when Pharaoh himself was forced to listen to him, and simply said "go to Joseph and do whatever he says." (Ibid 41:55, see Rashi)
The kingdom below is like the kingdom above.
"The kingdom below is like the kingdom above."(Brachot) Being the viceroy below gave Joseph status to lord it over the worlds above – second to G-d alone. Everyone has a point of Joseph inside. Through this point, every person can actually nullify harsh decrees, and perpetrate good ones. (Likutei Moharan 34:2) It all depends upon how much one merits to guard the covenant and the expression of yesod in his body.
For, just as there is the righteous person who, upon his death, ascends in the secret of M"N to the malchut of Atzilut, there is also the righteous person who ascends in the secret of M"D to the yesod of Atzilut.
The Zohar teaches that a person cleaves to G-d in the afterlife the same way he cleaved to G-d in life. One whose primary service was from Nefesh, and thereby activated malchut, will thus trigger that level in his death. One who was more yesod oriented will awaken that when he departs.
Regarding this, you can understand what is written in the Zohar (Parashat Teruma 166b) on the verse, "Light is sown for the righteous" (Psalms 97:11) - A light that is already sown.
A person progressively creates his quarters in the next world by his actions everyday. We can look at the world as a garden. Everything anyone does is as a seed planted. These seeds take root and grow. When you come to the afterlife, you reap the fruits of what you did – for better or worse.
Good deeds plant light, bad actions sow darkness.
Good deeds plant light, bad actions sow darkness. Just as seeds grow into trees that continue to grow and produce fruit, so the repercussions of one's actions continue to produce light or darkness in the universe. This is one way of understanding the Rabbis' statement "a mitzvah draws a mitzvah, a sin draws a sin" (Avot)
Did you ask yourself the meaning of sowing darkness? What does it mean that one's actions continue to produce light or darkness in the universe. Remember there is no disappearance in spirituality. How do we understand this section? Darkness means choatic experiences in the future. Yet these chaotic experiences will come to an end after Mashiach won't they?
This means that after the destruction of the Temple, Zeir Anpin became separated from Nukva, and that the 'supernal gardener', which is yesod, no longer plants his 'garden' [malchut].
One of the expressions of the yesod/malchut relationship is that of a gardener to his garden.
Rather, his garden becomes planted by itself, from the after-growths that went out and were planted in the beginning; they return and seed it.
The mitzvahs one does energize the soul to hold on to G-d even at a time when he is not able to do much.
The 'after-growths' are the souls of the righteous, which the gardener planted in the supernal garden before the destruction, after which they sprouted. After they return, and later leave this world. They ascend in the secret of M"N to the malchut of Atzilut, or in the secret of M"D to yesod—the 'supernal gardener', and there is a re-planting.
This is the secret of the verse, "Light is sown for the righteous." In other words, lights that are already sown from the beginning, in the supernal garden, return on their own and become re-planted, since there is no new seed [after the destruction].
The destruction of the Holy Temple disrupted the unification above. There is no new flow of 'seed' - reproduction of spiritual lights. Accordingly, the process of the sefirot redeeming and purifying the sparks and bringing creation to fulfillment is stifled during the time of exile. Nonetheless, righteous people can still maintain that process through their lives and subsequently, their deaths.
The unity of Chochmah and Binah is continuous and it continues to create souls and the flow of Light called Shefa. The exile and the destruction of the Temple has interrupted that flow into the physical world. Yet the flow continues to Righteous people and through them into the physical world. Since we live in a generation where the flow through the Righteous people is limited by the number of Righteous People in our generation, we need to become our own Righeous person in order to receive the full goodness and Shefa from the upper worlds. This is what the study of Kabbalah is all about.
[Translation and commentary by Perets Auerbach.]
Chapter 18 Section 3
A man who only performs [positive] mitzvahs merits the Nefesh called "Asiya". However, he is similar to a woman whose husband has gone overseas and has left her without clothing, food, or drink. He is like the Shechina that sits in exile and darkness while her house lays in ruin. That is what a Nefesh of a person is like without a Ruach, which is its husband, so-to-speak: without light and intelligence for understanding.
He is similar to a woman whose husband has gone overseas and has left her without clothing, food, or drink.
Nefesh is drawn from malchut, the sefira of action. Spiritual intelligence starts from Ruach and up.
If this person then strives to learn Torah constantly and teach the oral law for altruistic motives, he will merit Ruach from Yetzira. He will be like the woman whose husband has arrived to live with her forever in her house — clothing her, feeding her, giving her to drink, and elevating her. Such is one to whom Ruach comes and dwells within his Nefesh, filling it with the spirit of wisdom, elevating the Nefesh from Asiya to Yetzira.
If a person then endeavors to learn the 'hidden wisdom' — the secrets of Torah — then he will merit to receive a Neshama from Beriya, It will shine from within the Ruach, and cause even greater ascent. Then he is called 'adam shalaim' [a complete man] to which the verse refers when it says: God made man in His image. (Gen. 1:26)
Learning kabala causes the inner light of the soul to shine forth.
The secret is as follows: when a person only possesses Nefesh then he is only affected by the name Aleph-Dalet-Nun-Yud [ADNY].
This is the name that energizes malchut, the lowest sefira.
When he learns Torah altruistically, then he merits Ruach, which comes from the name Yud-Hei-Vav-Hei [YHVH].
This name enlivens tiferet, the source of Ruach.
When he learns the mysteries of Torah, then he merits Neshama, and he will draw down strength and blessing from the Name Aleph-Hei-Yud-Hei [AHYH].
This name gives strength to bina, the source of Neshama.
Now, when all three names come together in the person they total the gematria of 'yabok'
ADNY (= 65) + YHVH (= 26) + AHYH (= 21) = 112 = YBK (= 112).
אדני = Adonai = 65 + יהוה = HaShem = 26 + אהיה = Ehyeh = 21 = יבק = Yabok =112
The same name, YaBoK, is an eastern tributary of the Jordan River, located about half-way between the Kineret and the Dead Sea. This is the river that Jacob crossed over the night he fought with the Angel of Eisav and had his name (unofficially) changed to "Israel" (Gen. 32:23), representing his personal perfection. Through the power of this Divine name, he was able to ascend to a higher level.
This name is used for elevation as it is composed of the three names ADNY, YHVH, and AHYH, which correspond to Nefesh, Ruach, and Neshama, the successively higher aspects of the soul. Jacob went so far as to reach such a level that he required a higher name.
The Talmud (Berachot) teaches that his original name remained. Jacob is his name from the Nefesh aspect of his being; Israel is the name of the Neshama aspect.
Rectification of the soul is personal redemption.
With respect to him it says, "God save! May the King answer us on the day we call." (Psalms 20:10)
at the time of the redemption; rectification of the soul is personal redemption.
[This verse in Hebrew: ye’anainu b’yom karainu] has the head-letters YBK [i.e. yabok]
One merits redemption through repenting, through the Divine names YBK and BKY.
Then the person will have Nefesh from Asiya, Ruach from Yetzira, and Neshama from Beriya.
If he will further rectify himself, he can then achieve the three from Yetzira. If he rectifies himself even more, he can receive the three from Beriya, and after further rectification, the three from Atzilut as well.
There is a level of personal redemption and a level of community redemption and a level of world redemption. People refer to world redemption as the Coming of Mashiach. Kabbalah teaches that as long as we are looking outside of ourselves for change we have not started any level of redemption. Once we start to change ourselves we start a personal level of redemption which has to go through the three levels of Koof Yood Bet which relate to the three levels of the soul. Then we can unify with a community and can start that community redemption and ultimately reach world redemption.
As individuals reach the personal redemption they reach a level of personal Mashiach. This can grow to community Mashiach. Are you getting the sense of how far from completion humanity has put itself?
[Translation and commentary by Perets Auerbach.]
Chapter 18 Section 4
Regarding created beings, there are four elementals…
Present day science claims that there are over a hundred elements. In fact, it is not a contradiction. These four grand elements have many sub-divisions.
…and their mnemonic is alef-reish-mem-ayin…
One whose predominant quality is love will merit worlds of resplendent seas and water castles.
whose gematria is 310. This is the number of worlds that the righteous inherit in the world-to-come. The significance of this is that each of these worlds has in it the four elements. The nature of each individual's set of worlds depends upon how he blended the elements in his service of G-d while alive. For example, love manifests primarily from the element of water. One whose predominant quality is love will merit worlds of resplendent seas and water castles.
chanoch adds: Actually the gematria is 311. Why the Talmud says 310 relates to the Name of God El with its gematria of 31. This teaching about the 310 worlds is quite real and literal. In my opinion those people who choose to stay in the earth bound planes even when they think they travel to other dimensions are not going to receive these spiritual and physical worlds until they grow to the higher levels taught with the tools of the Sefer Yetzirah.
…which stands for 'aish' [fire], 'Ruach' [wind], 'mayim' [water], and 'afar' [dust]. They are themselves an expression of the four letters of the the tetragrammaton as explained in the Zohar (Vaera 23b). From these four elements, which are hinted to by the four letters of the Tetragrammaton, all of physical creation was brought into existence.
The Infinite light shines to the four letters, and they shine to the four sides of the Divine chariot, which in turn shine to the four elements and the four angels in charge of them (Sefer Yetzira). Eventually, it all progressively descends and cascades down to become the four elements of the universe
Furthermore, the four letters of the tetragrammaton combine to make twelve permutations (Sefer Yetzira)...
A set of four members can be combined in sixteen ways (4x4). However, since one of the letters of the tetragrammaton (the hei) is repeated, it only combines twelve ways (4x3).
...and they continue to create even more combinations, each different from the other, in level and in number, until they total 600,000.
Each combination itself expands into further permutations, and they in turn expand more, until the total equals the amount of soul roots. Each name is a direct channel of Divinity. "The souls are one with G-d." (Zohar). There are therefore the same amount of soul roots as the names that channel Divinity.
The tetragrammaton is the intrinsic name.
There are actually infinite categories of names. The tetragrammaton is however the intrinsic name; therefore the essential soul roots come from it.
These six hundred thousand combinations also have among them the four elements, and this is what allows various different combinations, which result in an unlimited amount of different creations — all from the four elements. However, [the] uniqueness [of any given name, or part of creation drawn from a name] will be based upon its predominant element, as the Rambam writes in [the first book of Mishna Torah], Hilchot Yesodei HaTorah, Chapter Four.
The souls of man, which are from the four [spiritual] elements, as mentioned.
From the elements come all of the quality traits. Tanya (Chapter 1) explains which traits come from which elements. This is the key to rectifying the personality The main job of a person in the world is to purify all of his qualities from their bad aspect (Shaar Kedusha). Fire must be cleansed from manifesting as anger, to be left as pure holy passion. Water needs to be purified from being drawn after lust, leaving it to shine in the soul as Divine delight. Wind must be separated from its negative aspect of energizing pride and idol chatter, to be left as a calm spirit. Dust requires cleansing from expressing as laziness and depression, to remain a channel for a proper measure of stoicism in the psyche.
Each of the four elements, in all of their combinations, total six hundred thousand. Therefore they divide into many parts, according to the permutations, each part being called a complete partzuf called 'man' [his supernal root].
This is a term for a complete spiritual organism, composed of two hundred and forty eight spirit limbs and three hundred and sixty fix spirit veins.
The division is unlimited. With this you can understand the secret of gilgul which is the reincarnation of the 'parts', and the arrival of each will depend upon the time appropriate for it.
When G-d reincarnates a soul, a different Ruach is paired with a different Nefesh.
"When G-d reincarnates a soul, a different Ruach is paired with a different Nefesh." (Sichot HaRan). This causes a different element dynamic in the personality. It is done in a specific manner, tailor made to suit the needs of what that person must be tested with and what he must accomplish in that given lifetime. In a past lifetime one who rectified the quality of love, might have to come back to rectify fear. The simple lesson of all this is how important it is to take advantage of where one is at any given moment, to use it to its fullest.
i am about to reveal things that are known to me yet science has not yet realized this. Let us return to the 12 permutations instead of 24. Above it said 16 but that is not complete. The two letter Hey's in the Tetragrammaton are considered the same since it has been authorized to write the Name in the Torah Scroll with these letters made the same. Yet they can also be different. the Left Line can be a Yood or a Vav. When this is followed through we have 24 permutations which is why we have 24 hours in a day.
Rabbi Auerback has translated the way he perceives things. We are where we think. There are 12 months but there are actually 24. 12 of these months are so similar that we call them constellations and not months. There are many other things that will be revealed soon. Actually to reveal more will take questions from students.
[Translation and commentary by Perets Auerbach.]
Chapter 19 Section 1
We have explained elsewhere that the difference between the souls of angels and that of man is that these [man] come from the zivug of 'haneshikin ha'elyonim' [lit. supernal kisses; unification of chochma and bina]...
The point of creation is the soul of man.
chanoch adds: The point of creation has the meaning of the purpose of creation. The Purpose of Creation is the Soul of Man. Described above but not realized is that what is a man is more than a human being. There are many men style beings. These human beings call Angels or messengers. They also have free will contary to popular thinking. They just are so close to the Light that to go against the Light is unthinkable and that is not considered free will. There are other "Men" who do not have free will. This is part of learning to travel the universes and dimensions.
The interaction and pairing of sefirot takes place on different levels within their structure. Different types of souls result from different variations. The point of creation is the soul of man. It therefore comes from the loftiest unifications.
Kisses come from face to face. The word for face is 'panim', which also means within. The soul within shines out through the face. This deepest part of a person radiates love to another by means of a kiss. For this itself the soul is created from the uniting of the deepest levels above as if in a loving kiss. This equips it to be ready by nature to unite with its Maker in the deepest manner.
This is the secret of The Song of Songs. It is a love story between God and the soul. It so begins, "Let Him kiss me with the kisses of His mouth" (Song of Songs 1:2). Rashi explains that it is the soul's supplication for Divine inspiration and prophecy - the highest connection to God.
chanoch adds: There are higher levels than Prophecy since Prophecy comes from the level of Netzach and Hod.
…whereas these [angels] come from the lower zivug [which occurs] in yesod.
This is called as if 'zivuk gufani', lit. physical unification. It is so coined relatively, because it happens in the lowest place of the sefirot of any given partzuf.
Likewise, souls stem from the internal part of the worlds and angels from the external part of the worlds. (Eitz Chayim, Shaar Hakavannot Shabbat)
chanoch adds: It is time for you to realize that Angels are your higher self until you grow past them and then they will become your external self.
There are countless levels of soul roots in between.
Many kinds of souls come from the 'zivug ha'olam elyon', lit. upper world pairing, but due to a blemish are forced to descend. The descent however is not necessarily the same for each; there are many different levels to which a soul can descend as a result of a blemish.
The blemish can come from the soul's mistakes while it was incarnated or from damage caused by the Original Sin.
There are two groups, the first being those which descend because of a blemish and come into this world on the level to which they have descended. The second are those souls whose roots are on the same level at which they enter this world. Therefore, the status of each is not the same.
The main tikun is at night.
However, the main tikun is still at night when one 'deposits' his soul by saying upon lying down, "In Your hand I entrust my spirit" (Psalms 31:6). At that time, the soul is elevated through a higher level of zivug and then returns as a new creation, in the secret of "They are new every morning" (Lamentations 3:23).
A person can go from level to level this way until he reaches his actual root and achieves completion. Alternatively, this can occur in the secret of nefilat apayim [lit. "supplication while bending", penitential prayers recited after the Amida] upon reciting the verse, "To You G-d I lift up my soul" (Psalms 25:1). Through this he is able to ascend from level to level according to his deeds until his root.
One who is a scholar and finds himself doing dishes at the moment needs to return to his scholarly pursuits. Likewise, a soul that has fallen to a lower station within the sefirot naturally needs to return to its higher source. This is one way of expressing what its rectification is about.
chanoch adds: Dreams are the most merciful aspect of Tikune correction. One can experience pain on the spiritual level and not on the physical level. This is a very deep teaching that one needs to contemplate.
[Translation and commentary by Perets Auerbach.]
Chapter 19 Section 2
An example could be a soul which originated above, perhaps in the world of Atzilut, but which descended because of a blemish to the world of Asiya, the level from which it entered a body. It can, through good deeds, ascend back to the world of Atzilut, and through the zivug of Atzilut he can do all of this while still alive and no longer need to reincarnate.
One can ascend during daytime while performing nefilat apayim in the morning because at that time Jacob has a zivug with Rachel who is called 'akeret haBayis' [the mainstay of the house - meaning that Rachel is the main wife of Jacob]…
"The patriarchs are the very merkava (lit. Divine chariot)" (Midrash). i.e., they are an embodiment and expression of the supernal partzufim in this world. Moreover, the manner in which they pair below reflects the way it is above. These zivugim will be discussed at length in chapter 26.
Prayer starts by relating to the lowest levels of Asiya and ... climaxes by connecting to Atzilut.
The point is that at the time when there is coupling above, the soul can, through its intentions, latch onto this and as if 'hitch a ride' uptown.
The underlying process that occurs throughout the order of the daily prayers is the unification of partzufim. This gives birth to light and Divine flow from which come all the spiritual and physical sustenance to the universe. Prayer starts by relating to the lowest levels of Asiya and progressively rises. The standing Amida prayer climaxes by connecting to Atzilut. Where do you go from the top? To the bottom. The succeeding nefilat apayim prayer takes us beneath Asiya to the sitra achra. By virtue of having reached such a lofty place, we are empowered to go to the lowest place and redeem sparks that fell there. Relative to the individual, one is enabled to elevate the fallen parts of his own soul and restore them to himself. This liberates the soul to ascend back to its roots.
…since it is the tenth sefira in Atzilut - the main sefira of the ten of Atzilut.
"First in thought, last in deed." The sefira progression is an enfolding from above to below of Providence. Malchut, the last stop, is the point of it all. Only through it can the lights of the other sefirot come to fruition. Just as all the male energies can only reproduce through the woman.
However, if a soul is rooted below and wants to become elevated higher than its root through good deeds, it can only do so at night through the verse, "In Your hand I entrust my soul," as mentioned above. For, the highest form of elevation is one whose root is above, and after descending ascends once again. At night time, there is a zivug between Jacob and Leah which is not included in the ten sefirot, but is the backside aspect of the malchut of tevuna, as is known.
Sometimes unofficial help can help the most. A level that exists outside of the ten sefirot per se is not bound to ascend through their hierarchy and can therefore end up in a higher place.
The main rectification process of the shattering of the vessels involved the welding of the sefirot into partzufim. (Eitz Chayim, Shaar Shvirat Hakeilim) An entire infrastructure was created. For reasons explained elsewhere, a small system was also created outside of the main structure.
The sefira of bina became the partzuf Imma. Its light is too great to be directly transmitted to the lower realms. It operates through a sub/quasi-partzuf at its bottom called tevuna. Some of its light is further filtered by the partzuf of Leah. It stands at malchut, the lowest point of tevuna, at its back. It is so designed to relate to 'backside levels' - those who have fallen away from G-d to as if the 'backside' of Providence, outside of its system.
If one wants to experience direct relationship to G-d, one must act at all times as if He is here.
Certainly the Divine omniscience is absolute at all times. How it manifests to us depends upon what we do. If one wants to experience direct relationship to G-d, one must act at all times as if He is here, as in, "I set G-d before me continuously" (Psalms 16:8).
This concept was opened to the world through Leah. The Torah tells that she lacked beauty (Berachot) Moreover, the Rabbis tell that people would say that she is destined to marry Esau, who was known to be wicked. (Talmud) She so found herself in a 'backside situation', one in which Providence seemed to place her behind the game. She did not despair. She constantly cried and prayed for help. She ended up marrying the righteous Jacob and giving birth to some of his best offspring. She so merited to be the embodiment of this spiritual root above. And so each one who to serve G-d from amidst any backside sort of situation merits to draw the energy of this partzuf, which can result in a catapulting to lofty heights.
What is similar between them, however, is that all souls can be elevated from level to level, without limit, as a result of one’s deeds - providing one has this intention.
What comes out of this is very inspiring: Not only can a person return home to his lost soul root - he can supersede it and ascend to an even higher place! It all depends upon one's actions.
The first step is to find out who you are. This requires time alone in communion with G-d. One examines his deeds and judges them before G-d. Measure for measure, G-d reciprocates and relates more and more to the person, revealing things about Himself. Once an understanding of the intrinsic soul root is attained, one can then learn about the specific things necessary to return to it. After reaching it, one can strive for rungs above...
[Samuel says: Since I mentioned the matter of angels, I will write a small introduction regarding the issue. The angels of Beriya are greater than the souls of righteous people from the world of Yetzira. Likewise, the angels of Yetzira are greater than the souls from Asiya. However, the souls of Beriya are greater than the angels of Beriya itself and how much more so than the angels of Yetzira. The same is true of Yetzira and Asiya. The souls from the Keter of Beriya are greater than the angels from the Keter of Beriya. However, the angels from the Keter of Beriya are greater than the souls from the Chochma of Beriya, and this is the way it is throughout.]
These differing soul roots will be gone over in greater detail later in the chapters.
[Translation and commentary by Perets Auerbach.]
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