Third Temple Class 7

This class is based on the Translation by Avraham Yehoshua Greenbaum of the Sefer Mishkney Elyon which translates as "The Upper Temple" by Rabbi Moshe Chaim Luzzatto ("Ramchal"). Rabbi Greenbaum titled his translation as "Secrets of the Future Temple." It is available online.

Our tradition teaches that The Upper Temple will descend to Earth and will be completed by human beings and become the well desired Third Temple. This Sefer reveals many kabbalistic aspects of the Temple and the Services Performed within and around the Temple.


Let me now discuss the Temple Courtyards in all their various details, and you will hear the most glorious wisdom. I will skip over certain other subjects that I should have discussed now and leave them until the end, because I am following the path of the flow of blessing, as I have already stated.

As the highways and pathways extended from the Foundation Stone outwards, two great areas appeared, one in front of the Temple building and the other surrounding both the Temple and this first area. Let me explain all this in detail.

These two areas were in the form of two great courtyards standing in front of and around the Temple. The first is called the Inner Courtyard, the second the Outer Courtyard. These are the places of all the King's armies and attendants who stand at His service. They have leaders who are in charge of the entire army. These leaders have their own special areas. These leaders are the Serafim, whose power is enormous. They stand by the Throne. All the other troops are encamped under their various flags. Over them stand officers, lower than the Serafim, who give them their orders and supervise all their activities so that everything runs properly without a hitch. The officers receive from the Inner Courtyard, while the lower angels and other troops receive from the Outer Courtyard.

These Courtyards are surrounded by lofty walls, which keep all the lights within their limits. The thickness of the walls is the same as the [length of the] measuring rod [six cubits], and they have gates enabling the flow of light and blessing to go forth, as I will explain in more detail later on.

chanoch's Commentary

Rabbi Luzatto mentioned things that he logically should discuss here but does not since he is following the flow of Shefa. A student of Kabbalah who is versed in the orderliness of the Talmud knows that there is a mental process to Chochmah and Binah and their interchange. This is how the universe follows the order of the flow of Shefa. This flow is not directly logical but does have an order to it. Learning that order is how one learns the spiritual system.

Three gates of the Inner Courtyard

The Inner Courtyard has three gates: one to the south, one to the north and one to the east. Each gate is ten cubits wide since ten groups of angels must receive from each one. The height of the gates is fifty cubits. I have already explained this secret above (see "Height of the gates" p. 87).

However, since the lights had already traveled some distance from the place of amazing connection, the center column no longer had the same great power as when it first emerged from the Sanctuary, for its strength was already weakened. For this reason the east gate of the Inner Courtyard, corresponding to the center column, was no different from the gates on the two sides. Now all three were alike, and each had a gateway to itself.

Vestibules of the Inner Courtyard

As each of the gates opened up, a vestibule appeared before it, as I have already explained. For what occurred only in the case of the center column [when the light went out of the Sanctuary gate] now occurred in the case of the two side columns [as the light went out of the gates of the Israelite Court]. However, the dimensions of the Vestibules of these gates are different from those of the Sanctuary Vestibule, for the lights going forth from the gates of the Israelite Court are not the same as the lights that go forth from the Sanctuary. In the case of the gates of the Israelite Court, the names of YHVH and EHYH made their vestibules eight cubits wide [corresponding to the eight letters of the two names]. Joined to them were the two columns whose identity and measurements you already know.

Three chambers on each side of the gates

As these gates opened up in the walls to allow the flow of blessing to pass outwards, the most beautiful chambers appeared on both sides of each gate, three to the right and three to the left. The three chambers on each side of the gate open into one another, while the entrances to the two chambers immediately adjoining the gate on either side face one another.

Let me now tell you some great secrets concerning these entrances. You must understand that in order for the flow of blessing that goes out into the worlds to be perfectly balanced and suited to the needs of their inhabitants, it must always have the proper blend of Judgment and Mercy. "Right" and "left" in the Chariot allude respectively to Mercy and Judgment. Nothing is able to attain its properly rectified state except through male and female. For this reason the lights are "male" and "female", and together they adjust and balance the flow of blessing so as to bring all things to a state of perfection.

This explains why these chambers are found here. Their secret is bound up with their root: a triad of Chesed-Gevurah-Tiferet to the right and a similar triad to the left. The inside measurement of each chamber is six cubits, for here the Vav, the male element, predominates. The thickness of the walls of the chambers is five cubits, for here the Heh, the female element, predominates. Thus each of these chambers is a union of male and female.

The blessing and sustenance suitable for all the Serafim is already gathered within the Inner Courtyard. When the flow of blessing passes through the gate, it immediately enters these chambers first, for the flow of blessing leaving from the right enters the left-hand chambers, while the flow leaving from the left enters the right-hand chambers. The flow of blessing is rectified in the three chambers on each side and adjusted in a balance of Kindness, Judgment and Mercy depending on whether Kindness or strict Judgment holds sway. It is the Vav and Heh, male and female, that make the adjustment. Afterwards the flow goes forth with perfect balance ready to be given to those who require it.

Roofs of the chambers

Let me tell you what causes the flow of blessing emerging from the gates to make a detour into these chambers instead of going straight out. When the gate opened, the three lights that made thirteen, as mentioned earlier [see "Walls and gates" p. 77], passed through. As they went out, they joined together with twelve other lights standing at the gate itself. These are the twelve letters אלף דלת נון יוד. Together they make a total of twenty-five. These twenty-five lights spread out on both sides from the roof of the extreme right-hand chamber to the roof of the extreme left-hand chamber. These lights did not go very far out. They simply spread out across the width of the chambers on both sides above their roofs but not below.

Thus as the flow of blessing leaves the gate, these lights shine down into it from above. The power of this light causes the flow of blessing to broaden and flow to the sides like the lights above instead of simply spreading outwards. It is then that the right side of the flow enters the chambers on the left while the left side of the flow enters the chambers on the right until everything is brought into perfect balance.

After being rectified in these chambers, the flow of blessing goes forth from the openings of the two chambers immediately adjacent to the gate on either side, and the two streams join together in the middle to make one. Then another light shines on it and brings it outside to be given to its intended recipients.

The prophet alludes to this when he says: "And he measured the gate from the roof of the chamber to the roof" (Ezekiel 40:13). You should understand that all the various measurements and dimensions are only mentioned because they allude to some aspect of wisdom and are known to be necessary for the proper government of the worlds.


It is in this Inner Courtyard that the outside altar, or "Altar of the Burnt Offering", is located. This is where the daily sacrifices are offered. I must now explain the order of the Temple services and offerings to the King. Make every effort to understand.

Know that all the heavenly hosts - the angels and the souls - receive from the array of holy lights [the Sefirot] the flow of sustenance and power they need in order to survive and carry out their duties. Every day all created beings must receive blessing and sustenance from their Creator. Why do I say "every day"? Because each day is a unique level, and no day is like any other. I cannot go into this in depth as it would require lengthy explanation, so I will be brief. Use all your powers of intellect to plumb the depths of these matters.

Every day the lower realms need to draw close [KaRoV] to the upper realms in order that the branches should be connected to the roots. This way the angels are bound to their roots, and the souls to theirs. It is the animal offering [KoRBan] that brings the angels close, while the incense offering brings the souls close. Understand this well, for this is the secret of "man and animal" (Psalms 36:7): the innermost beings [Pnimi'im] are called "man" while the exterior creations [Chitzoni'im] are called "animal".

chanoch's Commentary

Human Beings are not truly capable of multi tasking. We try to automate multiple tasks so that we can do something else and then return to that task and monitor the automation. Understand what is being said here. If you accept this statement as truth then we can ask a question Is this technique also a technique used by the Creator? If so then the energy concept of a day would be utilized as an automated system. That automated system would take each human action during the day and display this summary of the energy of the day as a method to monitor the state of the universe. Kabbalah teaches that each day and its energy is unique and each Mitzvoth must be done each day that it is capable of being done. Understand this well.

Types of sacrificial animals and birds

The sacrifices consist of animals (oxen, sheep and goats) and birds (doves and pigeons) but not wild animals. Each of these three categories has its unique place in the order of creation: the domesticated animals in the world of Beriyah (Creation), the birds in that of Yetzirah (Formation) and the wild animals in that of Asiyah (Action). The wild animals are on such a lowly level they are not brought as offerings. Because of the powerful hold of impurity on their level, they would not have the strength to ascend to such an exalted place.

The actual altar is the special place prepared for the performance of this service. The intrinsic quality of the altar derives from the "point" (see "Building the House by connecting the lights" p.60), the place of desire. Here burns the blazing fire of which it is said: "This is the burnt offering on the pyre" (Leviticus 6:1). Make every effort to understand, for these are very deep matters.

chanoch's Commentary

Animal Sacrifice is a divisive subject in our modern world. This comes from people not realizing that we have an obligation and a responsibility to assist in the management of the universe. If we do not do animal sacrifice then Spiritual Angels do not receive their sustenance. Of course the person who is viewing the world through the eyes with an attitude of physicality will never accept this argument. Yet if you are ever involved in this discussion throw this argument into the discussion and see what happens.

Priests, Levites and Israelites

Let me now explain the sacrificial service. Understand that there are three main columns: Kindness [Chesed], Judgment [Din] and Mercy [Rachamim], corresponding to the three categories of Priests [Cohanim], Levites and Israelites. Closest of all [to the higher levels] is Kindness, corresponding to the Priest, who actually performs the service. All three must be joined in a single bond. Beauty, Tiferet [= Mercy, the center column] must be joined with and included in Strength, Gevurah [=Judgment, the left column]. Then Strength, Gevurah, must be joined with and included in Kindness, Chesed [the right column], while Kindness, Chesed, finally offers the gift in a fitting manner.

This is why the Israelites, Levites and Priests each have their own special places in the Inner Courtyard starting from below and going upwards. All are present at the time of the offering, though the actual sacrifice may only be performed by the Priest. The Priest offers the sacrifice, the Levite sings with all his strength, and the Israelite stands by focusing intently, so that all are elevated together. To be more precise, the Courtyard has places for four categories of people: the Priests, Levites, Israelites and women. The women's place is outside in the Outer Courtyard, while the other three categories have their places inside.

chanoch's Commentary

So far we have not seen where the women will be placed and why that is true. Ultimately Priests, Levites, Israelites, relate to Chesed, Gevurah, Tiferet which will unify and then flow into Malchut to manifest the energy. With this in mind the women courtyard will actually include both men and women with the consciousness of Malchut.

Three parts of the animal included in the sacrifice

You must know that living beings are made up of three components. The limbs and fat are rooted in Kindness [Chesed], the blood in Strength [Gevurah] and the soul in Beauty [Tiferet]. This is why the blood is sprinkled on the altar while the limbs and fats are burned on it. And as the soul leaves the animal, it joins them both and thereby ascends and becomes bound to the lofty place to which it rises.

All these phenomena are visible and manifest in our world here below in accordance with the King's command, while their inner secret is known in the upper worlds as these three aspects join together in a single bond so as to rise and become included in the place to which they ascend. One part of the sacrifice corresponds to the Priest, another to the Levite, and another to the Israelite. Note how all the different aspects of the Temple are bound up with creation in general and not merely with specific details. Only later [in the chain of creation that begins with the Temple] is there a descent from the general plane and division into specifics.

chanoch's Commentary

i recommend that you have this items and correlations in mind when you read the Book of Leviticus the next time in the cycle of Torah Readings.

Slaughter and sprinkling the blood

Let me now explain the sacrificial ritual. First comes the slaughter of the offering, which may be performed even by one who is not a Priest. The purpose of slaughter [Shechitah] is to bring out the blood, which being rooted on the "left" side [Gevurah] is all the stronger. This is where the destructive angels have their hold. For this reason the blood has to be brought out by means of the "knife" [Sakin], which is an awesomely holy light emanating from Understanding [Binah]. The numerical value of the letters of the word SaKiN is 140, corresponding to the sum of the letters that make up this light: ל"ף י' ו"ד י'. These are the "filling" letters of the expansion of EHYH with Yud's [הי אלף הי יוד]. Through the power of this light the strong blood that is not fitted to come before the King is removed. Until this point the service is on the level of the pure [Tahor] but not the holy [Kadosh]. Afterwards the portion of blood that is fit for the altar is taken and sprinkled upon it, this being the portion that is offered from this part of the animal.

chanoch's Commentary

i hope you are beginning to realize the importance of gematria is delving to the depths of an essence. Gematria along with Astrology is called "The spice of Torah". Yet is it a spice that can withheld? i do not think so.

The House of the Knives

Let me now explain to you the great and awesome secret of why the two places [on either side of the Ulam, the Vestibule of the Sanctuary Gate] that I mentioned earlier are called "The House of Knives". For this is where the knives are kept. Great wisdom may be seen here. Understand that in general, each of the places we will discuss as we proceed, whether within the courtyards or elsewhere, has its own particular function. This is because special lights shine in each place providing the power to carry out the specific activity associated with it.

The knives are kept here because this is the place from which these knives receive the power to fulfill their function properly. To explain this matter further: The Gate of the Sanctuary is for the souls, and so the angels do not receive anything from there. They receive nothing at all from the great Gate itself. What they do receive from here comes only from the side entrances and the adjacent "Houses of the Knives". From here they receive a little, including the power to prepare their offering and banish all impurity, purifying and rectifying the sacrifice through the power of this knife.

Let me explain how they receive their power from these side entrances. For here we find two simple names of EHYH without the "expansion" with Yud's found in the case of the center Gate. Instead, the "filling letters" are drawn down to make these knives. [As explained above, the Hebrew word for "knife", SaKiN, has the same numerical value as the "filling" letters of the expansion of EHYH with Yud's, ל"ף י' ו"ד י'.] Thus the knives are put away in these places in order to join them to their root, which here takes the form of the simple names of EHYH. From here they receive the strength and power they need in order to carry out their function properly. One side is for the knives that are fit for use while the other side is for those that need repair.

Benefits of the sacrifices for the angels and souls

Understand that even though the animal sacrifices come to rectify the angels, it is Israel who are commanded to offer them since they are entrusted with the task of rectifying all the worlds on all their different levels. This is because all the worlds were created for the sake of Israel, whose service gives them merit before the King. Here in the lower world the People of Israel offer the animal sacrifice, through which the angels are rectified. After this they offer the incense, which brings about their own rectification.

The sacrificial service therefore starts with the sprinkling of the blood of the daily animal offering [on the outside Altar in the Temple courtyard], in order to go from the lower levels upwards. The animal sacrifice rectifies the external aspects of creation, and at the same time the souls themselves are also rectified by virtue of the fact that they are carrying out the King's command.

Immediately afterwards they burn the incense [on the Golden Altar inside the Sanctuary]. This brings about the rectification of the inner aspects of creation. They then go back outside to complete the sacrificial service [i.e. the burning of the animal portions]. For the only way to ascend to the supreme level is by starting on the lowest level. Yet the lower worlds can only come to perfection through the rectification of the upper worlds. Understand this well.

chanoch's Commentary

What is being hinted to in this section is the way the spiritual worlds work. It starts in the Malchut or what Kabbalah calls Female Waters. It starts with an action to draw the spiritual flow of Shefa down into the physical world. Without this lower action Shefa does not flow. Actually this lower action starts with an incitement from above. HaShem gives us a Mitzvah to do this action. Yet the action in the physical world must happen. Kabbalah teaches that everything starts with a spiriutal cause. Then the physical effect takes place. Yet what is the consciousness of the physical action. If it still the consciousness of effect nothing is accomplished to purify the world. If the mental (implying spiritual) consciousness is one of being a co creator then this is how the world gets purified and moves towards Mashiach consciousness.

Slaughter of the "most holy" offerings in the north

The slaughter of the "most holy" offerings [i.e. the burnt, sin and guilt offerings, Kodshey Kodshim] is carried out in the northern section [of the Temple courtyard]. This is because the beneficial effects of the sacrificial services are brought about through Strength [Gevurah = "north"], which "goes up but does not come down". In addition slaughtering these sacrifices in the north breaks the root power of anger and the destroyer.

The slaughter area

Adjacent to the vestibule of the north gate of the Inner Courtyard is the Slaughter Area (Beit Mitbachaim). Remember the underlying principle which I explained earlier, that all the various areas of the Temple are differentiated in accordance with the specific lights that shine in each one providing the power to carry out the specific activity associated with that place.

Four lights emerge from the radiance of the Lower Shechinah and stand in the Vestibule, two to the east and two to the west. They spread out in the form of four tables. Know that it is through the power of Malchut that all things come into being. These four lights are the four letters of ADNY. And four others exactly like them stand above at the "shoulders" of the gate, and they go forth from the Upper Shechinah.

The Washers' Chamber

Also in the Inner Courtyard is a place where the slaughtered sacrifice goes through a major purification, because here the waters of mercy spread forth and cleanse it of all filth and impurity. This place is therefore called "The Washers' Chamber". In it shine four other lights in the form of four tables whose measurements correspond to their underlying secret. Each table is one cubit high, and one and a half cubits in length and breadth. The table's height of one cubit added to the sum of its length and breadth (=3) make a total of four, corresponding to the four letters of ADNY. When the constituent letters of the name are "expanded" they are made up of three letters each. It is here that the slaughtering utensils are placed ready for use, and from here they receive their power.

Iron hooks for skinning the sacrifice

In this chamber are choice names. They are all HaVaYaH's filled with light and power. As the sacrifice of the angels begins to rise, it connects with these names, receiving great light from them, which prepares it until it is fit to go up on the altar of the King. Correspondingly the Slaughter Area in the Temple below contains "hooks of one handbreadth" (Ezekiel 40:43) for hanging the sacrificial animals [while they are skinned]. Understand that a handbreadth is sometimes considered to be four fingers wide and sometimes five. This is because the Divine Name YHVH to which the "handbreadth" alludes is made up of four letters, and when the cusp of the Yud is included it makes five.

The entrance to this chamber is at the side of the Gate of the Courtyard [to the north]. Understand that when I speak about the entrance of any given chamber, this is the place where the light enters to carry out its function.

As the light spread forth to leave through the Gate of the Courtyard it entered this chamber and dwelled there.

The Chamber of Song

Besides the Washers' Chamber, this courtyard contains other chambers including two located at the side of the northern gate facing south. The truth is that from the outside they appear to be one chamber but inside it is divided into two. This is where the musical instruments with which the holy Chayot sing are kept.

I will be very brief in my explanation of this matter. Make every effort to understand. Melody and song emerge from Malchut, as indicated in the verse: "And at night His song is with me" (Psalms 42:9) ["night" alludes to Malchut]. The roots of melody and song lie in Gevurah, Strength, tempered with Mercy, for she [Gevurah] yearns to ascend and to be connected with the right side [Chesed, Kindness], as it is written: "And your urge will be for your husband" (Genesis 3:16).

All who rise can do so only through Gevurah, which is why they only ascend through song. And the truth is that song has tremendous power to arouse love and desire. There are known to be seven basic notes. It is just the pitch and timbre that vary, creating the great variety of actual musical sounds. The lights manifest themselves in many different ways. How the various root lights shine determines the nature of the corresponding musical instruments. The sole function of any given instrument is to play the particular kind of song that corresponds to the level from which the instrument derives.

Song and music derive their power from these two chambers, which correspond to the Upper and Lower Shechinah. The chambers face south because, as you already know, melody derives from Gevurah tempered with mercy.

Chamber of the garments

Near the eastern gate is another chamber facing north where the priests dress in their priestly garments. Let me explain a deep secret about the priestly garments. They are all made of linen, which is rooted in Strength, Gevurah [on the left], yet they are white, which indicates mercy [the center column]. And they are worn by the Priest, who as you know is the man of Kindness, Chesed [on the right].

Let me explain this: Understand that Chesed and Gevurah are quite separate from one another. Each faces in a different direction and there is no connection between them until a third deciding factor [Mercy, Rachamim] comes and makes peace between them. For Rachamim takes the lights of Gevurah and joins them to itself, thereby extinguishing something of the burning intensity of Gevurah, which now becomes tempered with Rachamim. Then it is the turn of Chesed to connect with these two, forging such tremendous interconnectedness between them that they become a single inseparable unity. The entire process can be seen in the case of the garments kept in this chamber. The lights of Gevurah travel from the north and enter this chamber, which is in the east [= Rachamim]. Here they are tempered with Rachamim, producing beautiful white garments with which to clothe the Priest [= Chesed]. Understand this well.

The Flow of Blessing: Shefa

Ascent and descent of the ranks

Let me now complete my explanation of the Temple service in order to give you a proper understanding of how the flow of sustenance and blessing descends and spreads throughout the world. The lower ranks of creation rise and become merged with those above them. The Ofanim become merged with the Chayot, which in turn become merged with the Serafim. Their place in the upper world is in this Inner Courtyard. It is therefore here that the Altar is located and from here they rise to higher levels. The souls, on the other hand, ascend from within the Sanctuary [where the incense is offered].

In this way the roots [Sefirot] and branches [souls and angels] join together and complete one another inside and outside. Who can describe the joy of this moment of connection and the radiance of the light that shines on all levels? Through this awesomely holy connection [Chibur], blessing and sustenance flow to all who share in the gift rising to the King.

Distribution of sustenance

The flow of blessing and sustenance first emerges in the Sanctuary, and this is where the souls receive their sustenance. You must understand that it is from the gates that all the recipients receive their due from the the places from which they receive. Blessing and sustenance well up in each place and then go forth to their recipients through the gates. The walls of a given place set bounds to the blessing in that place, enabling sustenance to flow out in a measured way to its various recipients. The boundaries formed by the walls of any given place determine how the light emerges, for the light always shines within bounds and limits.

When the souls join and merge together, all are included in the twelve Tribes of YaH, these being the roots of all the souls. The Tribes merge under the Patriarchs, all of whom are then included in Abraham, the first father. He is the High Priest, who is permitted to enter the Holy of Holies once each year.

The service of the High Priest elicits a flow of blessing from the supreme Chesed. As blessing and sustenance descend, they come first to the patriarchs and then to their children, flowing from level to level until they reach every individual creature.

From the Inner Courtyard shines the light fit for the angels of the world of Beriyah (Creation), who receive it at the Courtyard gates. From the Outer Courtyard shines the light fit for the angels of the world of Yetzirah (Formation), while the light fit for the officers of the world of Asiyah (Action) and its creatures shines from the Temple Mount.

chanoch's Commentary


Thirty-three cells surrounding the Temple building

Surrounding the Sanctuary and the Holy of Holies are structures in the form of rooms or cells built one on top of the other. Everything that comes forth from the Holy of Holies divides into three [columns]. Thus there are [three rows of] five cells along the south wall, [three rows of] five along the north wall, and three cells [on top of one another] along the west wall. Thus the Sanctuary is surrounded by cells on three sides except for the last five cubits at the eastern end of its north and south walls, where the cells do not reach.

Let me explain the purpose of these cells. Besides the sustenance that the armies of angels receive from the gates of the Inner Courtyard and beyond, they also receive a share from behind the walls of the Sanctuary itself. Later I will explain how they receive it. This is extra sustenance. Even though it comes to them from outside [the Sanctuary], it is on the highest level, as opposed to the sustenance they receive from the gates, which is already on a lower level even though it comes from inside.

The Recess

[Outside the north and south walls of the Sanctuary at the east end is a five cubit Recess (Munach) since the cells stop short five cubits from the end of the walls.] Through the five cubits of the Recess the light emerging from the Sanctuary is able to go out to the right and the left. The entrance to the outermost cell is from the Recess while all the other cells open into one another. Through this entrance the light from the Sanctuary enters the cells.

Altogether there are thirty-three cells arranged in three levels of eleven cells each. This is because they derive from the union of the Vav [=6] and Heh [=5] in the Holy of Holies [6 + 5 = 11]. Thus the light that brought the cells into being existed from before.

Understand that the power of these cells is not enormous. It derives only from the Heh, which is why the Recess from which the cells receive is five cubits wide. This Heh created the boundary of the cells in the form of a wall five cubits thick. Inside the cells the light shone only through the four letters of her name ADNY [and the cells are therefore four cubits wide]. The Vav displayed only a small fraction of its power, forming only the foundation upon which the cells are built [which is six cubits thick]. From this you can appreciate how the intensity of the light is diminished before it reaches its recipients.

The Winding Staircase

Consider some other important factors. The angelic hosts are unable to receive even from the cells. Accordingly there are two other places to the right and left [i.e. along the south and north walls, outside the cells] ten cubits wide in each case. Unlike the cells that I have been discussing, these two areas are not divided into five. They are undivided spaces in which all the light emerging from the cells gathers. Why are they ten cubits wide? The reason is that ten groups [of angels] receive from them. It is from here that this extra sustenance goes out to them, as I will explain. Corresponding to this place in the lower Temple is the Winding Staircase [Mesibah].

On the subject of the cells: those on each successive tier are wider than the ones beneath them. This is because the wall of the Sanctuary [which is the inside wall of the cells] becomes narrower in steps as it rises. Since the wall forming the boundary of the light becomes successively thinner, the light itself becomes more abundant, so that the radiance of the upper chambers is greater than that of the lower chambers.

The abundance of light depends on the ceiling for, as you already know, it is the beams of any structure that draw the light into the space beneath them. However, these beams do not penetrate the actual wall of the Sanctuary but rest on these steps, for it is from the outside that they receive and not from the inside. Stairs lead up from cell to cell: all the lights have these steps to make it possible to rise from level to level.

The north-east cell opens to the Sanctuary and side gate

It is through the small gates at the side of the Great Gate of the Sanctuary that sustenance flows into these cells via the Recess. Let me explain some great secrets. The first cell [at the eastern end] of the north wall of the Sanctuary opens into the Sanctuary, while access to the cell [from the outside] is through the side gate.

Why is this the case? The reason is that when the flow of sustenance emerges from the Sanctuary it must spread out into these cells. In addition, repairs effected in the lower worlds can only rise through this access route. It is through this opening that the rectification ascends. However, the descending flow of sustenance is received not from there but only from the recess [Munach], as I stated earlier.

The northern side gate is open at all times in order to give access to the cell, for here are the "Lower Waters", which are female. However, the southern side gate is closed, for there are the Upper Waters, which are male. For this reason, it is said of the southern side gate: "For YHVH the God of Israel comes through it" (Ezekiel 44:2), and only the High Priest, who is on the south side [Chesed], may come there.

Let me now complete my discussion of the Inner Courtyard. I will come to the Outer Courtyard later. The Inner Courtyard is one hundred cubits long and one hundred cubits wide for, as you already know, when all the levels are included in one another they number one hundred [for each of the ten Sefirot contains all ten Sefirot: 10 x 10 = 100].