ON WHAT IS MAN
On what is man. In this gate will be clarified words that the early ones did not reach. They are awesome foundations, and if they were not essential to clarifying the matter of prophecy, I would not have revealed them - and I will write them as concisely as possible. Guard them under your clothes. (i.e. do not share this with non-torah educated people)
I will ask a few deep questions:
Why was it necessary to create a human being in this world with a body and a soul?
Why did G-d add to man two creations - the good and the evil inclinations?
If both inclinations are equal in strength, then where does the power of free will come in to tip the scale this way or that way?
And if the free will is stronger then the inclinations, then what is the point of the inclinations?
what are these 2 inclinations?
To know if the soul of man is greater than the angels or not. If we say that it is, then why didn't the angels also go down to this world to dress in a body? And if (you say) the angels are greater, this cannot be, because all the writings of the Sages we find the opposite.
For example, "Who is greater the guardian or the guarded" (Midrash) and many others. Also, the bible itself testifies the opposite as it says "You have weakened, the Rock (G-d) that formed you" (Devarim 32:18). Or "Give strength to G-d" (Tehilim 68:35), "You are sons to the L-ORD your G-d" (Devarim 14:1). "Yisrael in who I am glorified" (Yeshaya 49:3), "the angels don't say 'Kadosh' until the Jews starts below."
And we don't find such things by the angels at all anywhere (that we need to wait for them). Even if we say it's true (that the soul of man is greater than the angels), it is hard to understand to call man "sons of G-d" or to say that they weaken or give strength to G-d?! One could come to heresy, chanoch adds:, from this logical analysis.
The matter of prophecy, how is it conceivable that the King of Kings would speak to lowly man, and even through an angel to the lowly man, and also while man is clothed in the lowest and basest matter of all the worlds!
We clarified in the previous section (Part 3 Gate 1) the matter of the worlds, how they are all one name of G-d, and are divided into 5 worlds with different 5 spiritual levels (Yechida, Chaya, Neshama, Ruach, Nefesh), and this physical world is like the body of all of them.
What comes out is that all the worlds together are in the form of a man who also includes a physical body and a soul with 5 spiritual levels. Know that the [numerical value] of the name of G-d in full (spelling) equals [the numerical value of] "Adam" in gematria.
This forms exists also in each subdivision (body and 5 spiritual levels) and each subdivision is like a sub-man with one name of G-d divided in 5 levels and 10 sefiros.
There is also another division which we have not discussed and that is that the 10 sefiros are composed of 613 levels as we'll explain. Therefore, all the worlds together and also in each subdivision by itself, were created in the form of man below. This is the secret of "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness" (Bereishis 1:24). Understand this well.
We explained previously (in the book Etz Chaim - 347:4) that from Beriah (the 3rd world in figure 1) and below, everything is called the "tree of knowledge" which includes good and evil except that at each level down, the good diminishes and the evil increases, until we find that this lowly world is mostly evil and minimally good. We also explained (ibid) that the evil always envelops the good. Therefore the good is called the fruit and the evil is called the klipa (shell) which is worn by the fruit. Not only that, but this even applies in the "good" lights - because the purer and the more spiritual light wears and is enveloped by the other less spiritual light. Likewise at all levels. We also explained how the light of "Ein Sof" is the innermost of all and outside of it, the 10 sefiros according to their levels, where the Keser (see figure 1) is innermost and Malchus is outermost.
Now we will explain something new. That is, just like there is a unique light, called the world of the 10 sefiros, which is in the form of a man, so too there is another light called the "repository of the souls of men" which is of exactly the same form in all levels and details as the "man" of the 10 sefiros, which is called complete "G-dliness" (since the 10 sefiros are like a prism for passing G-d's light from the Ein Sof. So they are considered "complete G-dliness"). And it (the 10 sefiros) enters and wears this light which is called the "repository of the souls of men" in all its details.
There is another light in the form of man which is called the "repository of angels" from which are formed all the angels. It also is of exactly the same form as the 10 sefiros in all levels and it is the outer garment to the light of the "repository of the souls of men".
There is another small light, and it is called the "dark light". It is all hard dinim (judgments) from which come all klipos (impure forces) in each world. It envelops and is worn by the light of the "repository of angels" and it also is of the form of man.
Outside of all these 4 lights are the firmaments of that world, which are the "body" of that world. Inside the firmaments are the 5 lights described earlier, namely, the Ein Sof is innermost and in intensity according to the spiritual level of that world. Outside that, the light of the 10 sefiros, then the repository of souls, rep. of angels, and the klipos, then the firmaments which are the body of these lights.
Afterwards, inside the firmaments (for example in our world this is the space/time which can contain matter and energy) are created the derivatives of that world (i.e. the matter, energy, creatures, etc. which fill that world). These derivatives include all the levels since they draw their strength from the firmaments which themselves include all the five lights (Ein Sof, 10 Sefiros,Men, Angels, klipos), with the Ein Sof innermost and giving life to all of them. The power drawn from the "repository of souls of men" is called the upper Mazel of the man below. And understand this very well. But, that which is in [the world of] Beriah is called the Mazel of the Neshama, and in [the world of Yetzira] is called the Mazel of the Ruach, and in [the world of] Asiyah is called the Mazel of the Nefesh.
chanoch adds: Remember the word Mazel does not mean luck. It means the drip of something. This indicates a slow flow of the inner essence of the thing under discussion.
Now, we'll clarify what is man, what is his function. We'll start from the world of Asiya (#5) from the bottom up.
We have examined each world and its derivatives. Now, the world of Asiya (starting from the bottom) has at first the lowest portion (lowest 10 sefiros.) which are called the "4 foundations" (earth, water, wind, fire). Now all the offsprings (creatures, etc.) were created with the foundation of earth, which is the "body" (i.e. the lowest) of the 4 foundations (earth, water, wind, fire). They were created with the physical part of the foundation of earth (the foundation of earth also has spiritual levels internally in the form of 10 sefiros. The lowest sefira, i.e.malchus of earth, is physical earth devoid of any spirituality).
They are divided into four classes.
The lowest form of them is stones, metals, and the like ("domem" literally "silent"). They contain only the foundation of earth which received power from the 4 foundations, but only from the "body" (i.e. the lowest malchus of each of the other foundations water, wind, and fire). They become mixed together and became that metal. However, there is in it a power which mixed with this mixture. It is called the soul of the foundation of earth. (i.e. stones, metals, etc. are composed of the lowest malchus, i.e. the bodies, of water, wind, and fire combined with earth and the soul of earth. The soul of earth gives it the power to hold together the mixture so that it doesn't break down back to its four foundations.)
After inanimate objects were created the "Tzomeach" (vegetative life), such as trees and grasses. They have a body from the foundation of earth, etc. (mixed with the "body" from the other foundations as in rocks), with the appropriate soul levels of earth as before. Additionally it has a soul of "Tzomeach" (i.e. the water element is not just physical, it also contains the appropriate soul levels of water) which includes its five powers (growth, ingestion, digestion, expulsion, reproduction as in Part 3 Gate 2.
Afterwards, the "Chai" (living) was created. They are the animals, birds, etc. They contain the body and soul of earth (mixed with body of water, wind, fire accordingly as in rocks), plus the soul of water with its five powers (as in plants which takes care of all involuntary body functions). Additionally, they contain the soul of Chaya (i.e. soul of wind) which is called the animal soul - movement, and feeling, etc. (will, but not true free will.)
Afterwards, the speaking man was created. He contains all the powers above and additionally a "speaking soul" from the foundation of fire (i.e. he has not only the "body" of fire but also the soul levels of fire)
Know though, that certainly all the soul levels (of the 4 elements) in man are more pure then in an animal. (for example, the soul levels of wind or water in man are higher than in animals). Likewise, for animals relative to plants.
Afterwards, the Jewish man was created (he received an extra soul during the process at Mount Sinai, from Vilon which is the level of Keser of the 4 foundations - Sefer HaBris) . Purer in all the soul levels than all other creations, whether in the souls of Domem (earth), Tzomeach (water), Chaya (wind) or Medaber (Fire).
(note: A non-Jew can also receive this "extra soul" provided he re-enacts the process at Sinai, i.e. full and unconditional acceptance of the 613 commandments. This is why "conversions" without full acceptance of the torah is invalid.)
In being more pure than all the creations, he is elevated even higher because he is also included and tied in with all the 5 worlds and in all their details. How? After the lower soul (of the 4 elements earth,water,wind, fire), a soul enters him from the firmament of Vilon, and from there and above, all the way up to the highest firmament in Asiya (which is called "Aravos"), all this together is called the soul of Asiya. This is called the Intellectual soul, the holy soul in a person. It is divided into the 5 soul levels (within Asiya itself).
There is something more real and more fundamental than the physical, namely, "life". Life is the underlying essence of everything, and it is what grants existence to physical matter and animates the bodies of all living creatures through infusing the available physical means.
Both need each other mutually. The soul of life needs the physical body to reveal its ability to vivify it and the body needs the soul to be alive. It is a mutual two-way road that each needs the other. But the entire image and essence, the existence of reality is life and life is the existence of reality. The reality is a reflection of life and the LIFE is the ONLY reality - there is nothing else.
Hence, the underlying reality is not the physical, not atoms, not subatomic particles, not energy - it is life. Life is the underlying reality. (heard from Rabbi Yisrael Furmanski, a gifted scholar and kabalist).
This "life" originates from G-d. He is life in its absolutely true, absolutely real form. He is the underlying reality, the underlying essence of everything. Hence, throughout the Torah, G-d is called the "living G-d" (Jer. 10:10), in that He is the true fundamental reality - eternal life, and the underlying source of all life - "You grant life to all things" (Nech. 9:6).
We can also look at it in terms of 2 divisions; because every level which is taken from the 4 foundations (earth,water, wind, fire) are all called together the "foundation soul" which is divided as before into (domem-rocks, tzomeach-vegetative, Chai-animal, Medaber-fire) and the soul of Vilon is the Keser (crown) on top of them.
It is called the "intellectual soul" and the remaining firmaments are the remaining soul levels of the intellectual soul (ruach, chaya, yechida). Everything together can be called one "Nefesh" (soul) of Asiyah which includes all the levels in Asiyah.
Afterwards, he takes a Ruach from the 4th world (yetzira in figure 2). It also is divided into many levels along the lines we described for the 5th world. Together, all the soul levels in yetzira are called the soul level of "Ruach" relative to the total picture of the 5 worlds.
In a similar fashion, "Neshama" from the world of Beriah (#3 in figure 2), Chaya from Atzilut, and Yechida from Adam Kadmon.
Now we have explained well what is man. He includes within himself all the worlds whether in the subdivisions or the totality of all the worlds, unlike all the other creations whether upper (angels) or lower (animals,etc.) which only include from the world in which they were created.
Now, all this is from below to above (that man includes all the worlds). Man also includes all the worlds from inside to outside. How? Behold, in the 5th world (Asiya) he has a body from the element of earth which is called the "Olam HaShafal" (low world) and inside it is the "foundation soul" in the semblance of the klipos. Inside that are the angels of this world which were created for all the matters of this world, to cause plants to grow, etc. Inside that the semblance of the souls of men and all these together make a chariot for the light which comes from the lights of the 10 sefiros of the world of Asiyah which are innermost and serve to give life to everything. And likewise for what there is to a man from the rest of Asiyah and the 3 worlds, yetzira, briah, and atzilut (figure 2).
Now we have explained all the answers to the questions we posed above (beginning of Sec.III). Now, the light of the souls of men is more inner and higher then that of the angels, therefore the angels are his servants - because through him (man) they (the angels) receive their light and life from the 10 sefiros.
This is what is meant by "Behold, their valiant ones cry without; the ambassadors of peace weep bitterly. Isaiah 33:7" (i.e. angels cried out during the temple destruction) Because when the energy from the 10 sefiros does not reach the souls of men, which is more inner than them, their energy is also reduced being that they are external to the souls of men.
And therefore, the angels did not descend below to wear a physical body,because certainly they would be defeated by the klipos. Because even the souls of men does not have the strength to stand up to the klipos, all the more so them. And the proof is from the "Nefilim" (fallen angels in Bereishis 6:4 - Rashi on Bamidbar 13:33 brings down "Nefilim-Giants among the sons of Shamchazay and Azael who fell from heaven during the days of Enosh"), who tried to descend to this world and became lost. They will be destroyed in the future.
Another reason even greater (that angels don't descend to wear a body) is that in their lacking, they cannot draw spiritual energy to all the worlds except from their level and outside (unlike man which contains all the levels of all worlds), and even this much they are not capable being that they cannot bring energy to themselves from the 10 sefiros except through the souls of men.
Now it's true that the soul of man in the world of yetzira (4th world) is lower than an angel in Beriah (3rd world) and likewise for the other worlds, but a soul of man in beriah is greater than an angel in beriah, and likewise for each world. (i.e. within the same world and level, the soul of men is greater than the angel).
We have also clarified the greatness of the soul of man. It is light born out of and drawn from the light of the 10 sefiros themselves without any intermediary. For this they are called "You are sons to the L-rd your G-d." (Devarim 14:1). Because they are in the semblance of a son who is united with his father and comes from Him. And this is also what is meant by "the Avos (patriarchs), they are the holy Chariot" - i.e. a chariot to the 10 sefiros which ride on them without any intermediary light. This is also the meaning of "You are My servant, Israel, in whom I will be glorified" (Isaiah 49:3), because the clothing of a person is his glory, as is written "As a bridegroom will don glory" (ibid 61:10)
Now, the light of the souls is a garment to the light of the 10 sefiros. This is the meaning of "my beloved (G-d) descended to the garden (this world) to browse in the gardens, and to gather roses" (Shir HaShirim 6:2) whose first letters spell "levush" (garment) because He picks the souls of tzadikim which have a fragrance like roses due to their good deeds in this world, and He picks them to wear His light on them (Ruach HaKodesh). And this is the meaning of "And you who cling to G-d..." (Devarim 4:4). Completely clinging with the light of the 10 sefiros, unlike all the other creations.
We have also clarified the matter of the good and evil inclinations in a man. They are two forms added to a man besides his soul. And they are light from the angels (good inclination) and light from the klipos (evil inclinations), outside of the good inclination and external to it. But being that the soul itself is innermost than all of them, and being that it is the essence of a man, therefore it is in his power to tilt the free will to the place that he wants - because he (the soul) is greater than them.
Now, his primary desire is towards the good inclination, because it is holy like him and also near to him. But for the body, it's primary desire is to the evil inclination, because both are from the side of evil (physicality), and also they are closer to each other. It is because of this that there is a battle between the physicality and the soul. Because since the soul cannot do the mitzvot except through the body, which tends towards the evil inclination, because of this there is a great difficulty to subjugate it (the evil inclination).
We have clarified that the soul has the power of choosing to follow the good inclination, but since it needs the actions of the body, it has great exertion in subjugating the evil inclination. And understand this well, that after death there is no (main) punishment neither to the soul nor the body until they re-join together like before death. (in the time of the resurrection)
We will now explain the answer to the first two questions. Namely, why was it necessary to create man with a physical body and also why was he created with a good and an evil inclination. This will also answer the verse "Give strength to G-d" (Tehilim 68:35) and "You have weakened, the Rock (G-d) that formed you..." (Devarim 32:18)(i.e. how is it conceivable for man to strengthen or weaken G-d)
Behold, in the beginning of creation, all the worlds were created in the manner described above. From the power of the "Ein Sof", with (G-d's) simple altruistic desire to do kindness. Afterwards, (after the creation of all the worlds) it was necessary to draw down the spiritual "nourishment", life, and energy, and to all the worlds in order that they should continue to exist...
So after the creation it was necessary for the worlds to sustain themselves through their own actions (i.e. the worlds should draw down the spiritual energy from G-d through their own actions) - similar to a son who grows up no longer needs to eat at his father's table.
However, the 10 sefiros do not depend on any actions because the spiritual energy that is needed to sustain them is drawn constantly from the "Ein Sof" as it says "evil will not dwell with You." (Tehilim 5:5) The creation though, namely, from the souls of men and out, which are mixed with good and evil, need actions and tikun (reparation). Therefore when there is a lessening of the spiritual energy from the 10 sefiros to the creations, it appears as if there is a weakening of G-d's power (i.e. since the souls of men are the intermediaries between the 10 sefiros and the rest of creation, when the souls block the passage of energy, it appears as if G-d's power is weakened.) Therefore it is written "You have weakened, the Rock (G-d) that formed you..." (Devarim 32:18) and the opposite: "Give strength to G-d" (Tehilim 68:35).
Another reason (why it appears G-d is weakened) is as follows. When a man is healthy and clean, he desires that his garments are noble according to his greatness. So too, the sefiros appear weak when the creations are in need of reparation (since the sefiros are innermost and "wear" the souls of men like a garment. We have clarified the 3rd question (in beginning of Part 3 Gate 2)
For the reasons explained above (that it is necessary for the worlds to maintain themselves), it was necessary to create a man which would include all the creations and emanations (i.e. everything), which would tie together all worlds as explained above until the depths of the land (our world). Because he is closest to receiving the energy/life force from the 10 sefiros. Then by the tikun (reparation) of his actions, he will draw down the energy from the 10 sefiros to himself, and then from himself to the angels, and from the angels to the klipos, in order that they repair what is possible to separate as we'll explain nearby, and from the klipos to the worlds themselves which are the Kelim (vessels) and bodies of each world. And if, G-d forbid, he sins, he destroys all the worlds.
Behold, we have explained the need for creating man with a body and soul and with a good and evil inclination. And there is another similar, reason for the yetzer hara. Namely, that it is necessary to be created in man in order that he make children and that he eats - but everything only in the necessary amounts and in purity. And also, it (the yetzer hara) is necessary in each world to bring down the spiritual energy which condenses and becomes physical for the vessels, namely, the worlds themselves. And without the spiritual energy, the vessels (worlds) would not continue to exist..
Therefore it was necessary for man to be joined with all the worlds, that they should help him in his actions to bring down the spiritual energy to himself and to them. Because they themselves do not have the power to draw it (the energy). Therefore when a man sins, all the worlds are damaged and receive punishment and a diminishing of energy because they did not help him. Understand this well. And this is the meaning of "all the wickedness like smoke will be destroyed" being that the klipos caused the sin more than everything else, therefore their punishment will be great. Nevertheless, on the good portion of them (the klipos) it is written "And you will love H' your G-d with all your hearts" (Devarim 6:5) - "hearts" plural means with both inclinations. Since the evil inclination can also be purified - but the negative part of the evil inclination (which should be eliminated) on that it is written "As wax melts before the fire, so let the wicked perish at the presence of G-d" (Tehilim 68:3).
We have explained that man includes all the worlds, and this is what is meant by "it is all of man" (Koheles 12:13). And it is the deeper meaning of "Let Us make man in our image". This is why "Let Us" is written in plural form - because all the worlds were partners in his making. Then he includes the image of man in all the worlds (i.e. the 10 sefiros) because all of them need his actions. This is the deeper meaning of "And He placed him in the garden of Eden to work it and guard it."(Genesis 2) - (work it) means positive commandments and (guard it) means negative commmandments. As it says "G-d did not bring rain on the land because the man was not there to work it." (Genesis 2:5) And also, "And I placed my word in your mouth to plant the heavens and to lay the foundations of the earth" (Isaiah 51:16). Because man through his actions brings down life to heaven and earth and it is as if he planted them and laid their foundation. Therefore we find that "You are with Me (G-d)" as the Sages taught (G-d says:)"My partner - I create and you uphold".
From now it should not be difficult to understand the matter of prophecy like the Sages taught on the verse "And to cling to Him." (Devarim 11:22) and "with Him you will cling" (ibid 10:20) because the prophet clings to G-d through bringing down the prophecy and the spiritual energy to the world below. And this is no surprise because there is no light which clings to the 10 sefiros like the souls of men. This is the deeper meaning of "And you who cling to H' your G-d..."
BARRIERS TO PROPHECY
In the previous section, we have discussed how it is easy for a man to prophecy since he includes all the worlds and all of them receive their sustenance (spiritual light) through him. The bottom line of all this is that just the opposite - prophecy must exist in the world in order to straighten the man to correct his ways to bring down the energy to all the worlds so that they don't become destroyed. And for the worlds, if prophecy did not rest on Moshe and he did not bring down the torah from the heaven which sustains the worlds, as it says 'if not for My covenant (the torah) day and night, I would not have appointed the ordinance of heaven and earth' (Yirmiya 23:25) then the worlds would have been destroyed, G-d forbid. And in his (Moshe's) ways he brought all the later prophets to straighten the (Jewish) nation and to enlighten their eyes in the wisdom of the torah and its secrets through the Ruach HaKodesh (Divine spirit) which enclothes them.
Therefore prophecy and Ruach HaKodesh is necessary and must be found in the world and it's very easy to do - but on condition that there are found men who are fit for it. But if the soul is flawed that is what blocks. Therefore let us explain these barriers.
Behold, when the energy of Ruach HaKodesh is awakened to descend to the man and to rest on him, but he is a sinner - behold, the yetzer hara (evil inclination) causes a barrier between the intellectual soul to the source of the Ruach HaKodesh. This is what is meant by "your sins were separating, etc." (Isaiah 59:2) and the Ruach HaKodesh does not rest on him. And this is through the 365 sins which damage the intellectual soul as described above.
Likewise if the blemish is due to lacking of a positive commandment among the 248 positive commandments, behold he is a 'baal mum' (blemished), and the energy from above cannot come down to the intellectual soul while there is an organ which is corrupted or blemished.
But if the blemish is below - in the foundation soul because of bad character traits in the animal soul or due to forbidden food which corrupt the soul of tzomeach (vegetative) and likewise for similar cases. Then the power below cannot awaken to bring down the energy above and it becomes a separating barrier there and the awakening below cannot rise up to bring down the spiritual energy from above.
Therefore we find there are several barriers.
If a barrier from the tzomachas (vegetative soul) and above due to damage through forbidden food whose powers are in the vegetative soul.
If a barrier through bad character traits or through sins from lust in arousing the nefesh chaya (animal soul).
And if they are sins of speech which come from the speaking soul.
And if they are in thought which damage the intellectual soul.
We have also explained that each blemish is only in that specific point of the soul in each level and in each world. Understand this. And sometimes when the blemish is strengthened, the branch of the soul becomes cut off from the body of the tree which is called the "repository of the souls of men" (see PART 3 GATE 2). This is the deeper meaning of what the Sages said "the wicked while alive are called dead" (Talmud Berachos 18b)
We have explained that not all damage is equal. There are damages in the vegetative, animal, speaking, and intellectual soul. But for the matter of bringing down Ruach HaKodesh (Divine spirit), since there is a damage in any of them, he cannot bring it down at all. Therefore one who wants to purify himself, must make sure all the levels are crystal clear; completely clean from all the sicknesses of the "yetzer hara" which is mixed in with all the levels of the soul. And this is what was said to Moshe Rabeinu - "remove your shoe from your foot" (Shemos 3:5).
That all the limbs of your body and the powers of the soul in all levels we mentioned should be pure from all types of base physicality as mentioned in the Sefer Tikunim. And that there should not remain from the impurity of the yetzer hara at all, except for the "good part" which is necessary for the upholding of the body. Then there is no blockage to separate from the soul to its root in the light of the repository of souls which itself is attached to the source of Ruach HaKodesh, namely the 10 sefiros.
Behold, we have clarified that due to a damage there are two evils. One, that the lower "desire and will" cannot rise to the source of Ruach HaKodesh, and through that the upper Ruach HaKodesh cannot descend down below. And all this is due to barriers of sins as explained.
However, for all the damages (in all levels), they all must go through the body (i.e. lowest part of) the nefesh HaDomem (lowest soul from element of earth) which is tightly bound with the (physical) body itself.
Because it (the body) is the instrument through which the soul acts in all of its levels. But not all damages are found in all levels. Because there are damages in the vegetative (soul), or animal, or speaking, or intellectual as explained earlier. (The exception to this is that) the (damages) in all levels are found in the nefesh HaDomem and in the body (since they are used in all levels).
CONDITIONS FOR PROPHECY
For the conditions of prophecy. We have explained that there are damages which are done to the souls of tzomeach (vegetative), and some to the animal, and some to the speaking, and some to the intellectual, and that one must clean up all of them (the souls).
Therefore one must first complete teshuva (repentance) from all sins or bad midos (character traits) and not return to them at all. (this will unblock the tubes so the spiritual energy can flow. But if one tries to fulfill positive commandments while the sins are not rectified, the klipos attached to him due to his sins will suck the holiness from him and entice him to more sin (so they can become more strongly attached and receive a greater portion). This person is like one trying to fill a bucket with holes.)
Do you know what is a midot – character trait? Do you know the difference between personality traits and a character trait? It is good to click on the link above that takes you to words that explain these differences and also a list of Midot so that you can decide which apply to yourself and see if you are willing to change them. You might also ask your friends and family which of the list of words apply to you. You may find a significant difference between your opinion regarding these words and your friends and families opinions.
After that, one should try to fulfill all that is possible in our times of the 248 positive mitzvot like we explained in the first section. And especially from those which are to fix times for torah study during the day and night, don't miss even one day. And to pray with complete kavana (concentration) 3 times a day, and to fulfill birkas hamazon (grace after meals) and all the other berachos with kavana. And to honor the Shabbat in all its details, and to fulfill "love your fellow as yourself" with a complete heart, and to fulfill the shema, tzitzis and tefillin properly in his prayers.
After that to be careful not to sin at all from any of the 365 negative commandments and even in the dikdukei sofrim (obligations derived by the Sages from a meticulous scrutiny of the Scriptural text). And especially from all those which carry a penalty of kares (cut off), or death from heaven or Beis Din below, and from other negative commandments, and especially from slander, lashon hara, idle speech (devarim betalim), frivolity, staring at women, all types of keri (wasted seed), nida, oaths even for truth, and guarding the shabbat above everything. And be careful of all improper midos (character traits) because they contaminate the foundation soul (i.e. soul levels in earth, water, wind, fire) and especially from gayva (arrogance) - to the opposite extreme until one is like the threshing floor that everyone treads on and the shiflus (humility) should be fixed in your heart literally until you do not feel any joy from one who honors you nor shame from one who insults you - that the two should be equal in your eyes.
Guard yourself also from anger, even if one hits you on your face, because there is nothing that prevents Ruach HaKodesh more than anger. And from irritation, even for your family. And from sadness - to distance yourself totally and completely because prophecy does not rest at all even for one worthy of it while in a state of sadness.
And he should be "content with his portion" even when suffering is coming on him, as it says "And you will love H' your G-d with both your hearts, etc." After all this, he should toil with all his strength in the torah completely lishma (pure intentions) - to give nachas ruach (pleasure) to his creator only. And when he toils in torah and mitzvos, he should be joyful to the extreme end as it says "I am joyful in Your commandments like one who finds a great treasure" (Tehilim 119:162). Because through this you will bring down shefa (spiritual energy) to all the worlds.
And the main, crucial thing is yiraso Yisbarach (fear of G-d) always, every second, in order that you not sin. And this comes through placing G-d in front of your eyes, as it says "I have set G-d before me always" (Tehilim 16:8) And he should have intent to cling his thoughts to Him, don't stop even for a second. And this is the meaning of (the verse:) "and to cling to Him", or "and to Him you will cling".
on the types of prophecy
1) We have explained how there is a light in the form of a man (i.e. the repository of the souls of men) which spreads out into all 4 four worlds - atzilut, bria, yetzira, asiyah (figure 1) until the depths of the 4 foundations of this lowly world. This light clings to the light of the higher man, namely the 10 sefiros. They (the 10 sefiros) wear this light which is called the repository of the souls of men and all the souls of men below are included there. And when they descend down to this world (our physical world) to wear a physical body, they leave their root attached to their source (i.e. when the soul descends down to this world to wear a body, the root upper part remains attached to the repository of the souls of men on high) from which it was taken. And only the branch of the root descends and wears a body in this world. This can be compared to the branches of a tree which are attached and rooted in the tree itself and the branches bend down below and touch the ground even while they are attached to the tree (as in a willow tree). But when a man sins a sin which deserves "Kares" ("cut off" as in "But the soul which does it with a high hand...and that soul shall be cut off from among his people."- Bamidbar 15:30), then that branch becomes severed from the tree and the person remains standing in this world like the spirit of an animal (i.e. no higher connection). And this is the secret meaning of "that soul shall be surely cut off..." (Bamidbar 15:31). And this is also the meaning of "Man is a tree of the field" (Devarim 20:19).
This is also the secret meaning of why the tzadikim's names are repeated in the torah, as in "Avraham, Avraham", "Yaakov, Yaakov", "Moshe, Moshe" one corresponding to the root which remains above connected to the tree. And this (root) is called the "Mazel" of a man. Just like our Sages said "That Moshe saw the Mazel of Rabbi Akiva sitting and expounding on the torah..." (Menachos 29b). Because from it (the root, i.e. mazel) flows the spiritual energy to the branch which descended below and enclothed in a physical body.
2) Behold, the root is very lofty, at the top of the heights of the world of Atzilut, and the branch is very long, it spreads and descends in all the worlds until the end of it enclothes inside a body. And in each level of each world, it leaves there a root, in such a way that there is no soul which does not have an endless amount of roots, each one higher than the next. And through a person's actions, he can merit to ascend to all of them. Now, all the levels in the world of Asiya, all the roots that he left there are called in totality (together), one "Nefesh Shelema of Asiya" (complete soul of Asiya). And similarly in the other levels.
3) Through this we have clarified the matter of prophecy, since when a man's physical part has become pure, clean, without the impurities of the yetzer hara (evil inclination) and not in the hands of the powers of the lower soul (i.e. is free from bad character traits) at all, and he doesn't have in his hands a sin which damages some root of the roots of his soul, behold when he prepares himself to connect to his root above, he will be successful in connecting. However, even though he is fitting for this, he must separate (hispashet) his soul and shed completely all forms of physicality - and then it will succeed in connecting to its spiritual root.
Behold, the matter of separation (hispashetus, i.e. the soul leaving the body and ascending the spiritual worlds), that you will find written in all the books on the matter of prophecy and "Ruach haKodesh" (holy spirit) is not really separation where the soul leaves the body completely like during sleep, because if so, it is not prophecy but rather a dream, like all dreams. Rather the settling of the Ruach HaKodesh on a man occurs when his soul is still attached to his body and he is awake. Rather the matter of separation refers to removing all thoughts completely and also the power of imagination in him, which is a power whose source is in the nefesh chaya (living "animal soul" - see Part 3 Gate 2 #8). Then once he succeeded in stopping the thoughts and imaginations of all matters of this world, (and reached the state) as if his soul left his body, then he can switch his power of imagination of thoughts to imagine and picture as if he is rising up the spiritual worlds to the roots of his soul that he has there (i.e. since he has roots in each world as in #2 above), and from there (one root) to there (another root) until he reaches using the picture of his imagination to his upper source (highest root?), and he should engrave the forms of all the lights in his thought as if they exist and he sees them. And then, he should think and have intent to receive light from the 10 sefiros from that point where the root of his soul is attached there, and he should have intent also to raise the 10 sefiros one to the other until the Ein Sof and bring down to them light from there until below, in the way of descent until the end. And when the light (from the Ein Sof) descends through him to them (the 10 sefiros) they rejoice in this and shine from that light that he brought down to the root of his soul, which is attached there according to the portion fitting for it. Then he should have intent to descend through the channels of descent from level to level until the light and energy reaches his intellectual soul in his body, and from there it reaches to the "living soul" and the power of imagination in it. There the matters will become pictured in a physical picture in his power of imagination. Then he will understand them as if he actually saw them with his eyes.
Sometimes this light which descends and forms in one's power of imaginaton, takes the form of an angel which speaks to him, and he sees it or hears it's voice or the like from one of his 5 senses, of his imagination (i.e. he feels it but in his mind only). From there, they become (more) external and manifested until he sees, hears, smells, and speaks literally with his physical senses, as it says "the Spirit of G-d spoke through me and His word was on my tongue" (Shmuel II 23:2). Since the light condenses and forms into the physical senses. Sometimes one's prophecy only reaches the 5 senses of the imagination. All this depends on the extent of purity of the separation of the imagination from all physical thoughts (i.e. the quality of the preparatory meditation, that he should have removed all thoughts and become receptively silent.)
We've found that prophecy is like a dream whereby the intellectual soul goes out from him and ascends up from level to level and there gazes and afterwards returns and descends this light until the "life soul" (nefesh chaya-animal soul), in which there is the power of imagination. There that light condenses and forms and becomes more physical. When the person awakens, he remembers the matters through the power of (mental) guarding and memory which are also in the "nefesh chaya", as is known in the science of nature. Behold we have explained the matter of prophecy and the matter of dreams well, because this one (prophecy) is while his soul is in his body while that (dream) is after it has left (his body).
However in prophecy itself, there are 2 types. One is the prophecy of other prophets (besides Moses). When the light descends and reaches in its descent to the intellectual soul in him, and from there to the "life soul" to form into the 5 senses of the imagination, the external (physical) senses would tremble with a great trembling and they would fall on the floor because they did not have the power to receive that light and to form it and condense it to the physical senses. The prophecy in this manner is considered a "dream", even though it is not really a dream as it says "and a great sleep fell on Avraham.." (Bereishis 15:12).
The second type of prophecy is full prophecy where the senses did not tremble at all and (the light) forms and condenses smoothly. This was the prophecy of Moshe Rabeinu. The reason for this is because his physical side become totally pure and transformed through the holiness of his deeds until it reached the level of "soul" (i.e. the physical became completely spiritual). Because the (physical) impurities were removed and only the good and pure of his body remained, and likewise for the powers of his foundation soul (i.e. soul parts from earth, water, wind, fire) because in them only is there physicality, unlike in the intellectual soul and above.
We have already explained that there are countless roots to the soul of a man (i.e. when the soul descends from its source in the repository of soul, it leaves roots along the way in all the spiritual worlds.). And behold, according to the greatness of the source from where it was hewn, will be the greatness of the power to bring down the energy of prophecy. (But) likewise even if his soul's root is from a very lofty place, but he did not rectify and merit to bring down from all the roots from there and below, so too he will not be capable of bringing down the energy of prophecy except from the level that he rectified and merited. Only from there he will bring down the energy of prophecy. From this you can understand that there are countless levels of prophets.
(i.e. each prophet has a level of prophecy according to the highest in the chain of roots he has rectified completely. His maximum potential is according to his highest root. But his current level depends on the number of links which are totally rectified.)
And don't think that since we have explained that the soul of the prophet does not leave his body, if so what power does his thoughts have to ascend and open gates, etc. The answer to this is like I wrote above, because the soul is like a very long (tree) branch. And it spreads down from its primary root which is attached to the tree (of the repository of souls) all the way down to the body of a man. And this "line" which is pulled constantly as a man yearns to ascend to his (primary) root, the light of his thought which is called "muskal" (thought) from the "maskil" (thinker), which is the intellectual soul, ascends to the "sechel", which is the lofty root (primary root) of his soul. (When the thought ascends all the way from the man below to his primary root through the "branch") they (the maskil and the sechel) cling and unite through the "haskala" (understanding) itself, which is the energy which descends from the "sechel" (primary root) to the "maskil" (intellectual soul below).
Therefore the "muskal" is the light and the energy itself which descends from the "sechel" to the "nefesh hamaskelet" (the intellectual soul) and this energy and light which is tangible it is called "machshava" (thought). Understand this well because it is not something empty. Because if it were not so, then all the matters of kavana (intents) in prayer and thoughts of good or evil become null and void.
(the book Taharos Hakadosh by the Kabalist Aharon Rota zt'l explains (Maamar Taharas Hamachshava ch.3):
Know my brother, that I will transfer to you another great principle. There is "sechel","maskil", and "muskal", which means every Jew has a spark of holiness which is called the "nefesh hamaskelet", who root is attached in the heavens above (spiritual worlds). And this spark which is in his body is very little, and it is not even 1 of a thousandth, of a thousandth, of a ten-thousandth, of a ten-thousandth compared to the root of his neshama in the heavens. Because there it is greater without limit that we can understand. And the nefesh in the body, is attached to it, like a chain is attached from one end to the other. And this is the secret meaning of the verse "For the L-RD's portion is his people Yaakov the chain of His inheritance",Devarim 32:9 (see Ohr HaChaim on this verse and also on the verse "And you who cling to G-d", Devarim 4:4).
And the root of the nefesh is in the heavens (i.e. spiritual worlds), and it is called "sechel", and the nefesh (below, in the body) is called "maskil", and the light, the fire, the desire, the will, the craving that the nefesh has for G-d, and to cling to its root - this light which comes out is called the "muskal". And when this light rises above, it joins there and becomes a great flaming fire, which is felt and seen by all the angels above, and the souls above. And this light which is called muskal joins with its root, and if a man has rectified himself and is of stature, then the sechel above returns and shines down below...ahava, yiras shamayim, and mesirus nefesh as written (midrash shir hashirim 5), "open for Me like the crack of a needle, and I will open for you an opening the size of a palace". (from Taharas Hakodesh (maamar taharas hamachshava 3)
And behold we have clarified how prophecy is a necessary matter and is possible to happen. It is like a man who grabs with his hand the end of a tree branch which is bent all the way to the ground and he pulls and shakes it with strength. Then the entire tree necessarily moves and shakes. However, the upper worlds will not be moved by the thoughts of man unless he is fitting to bring down the higher light to them. And then through the simcha (joy that they received in receiving the light) they will also channel down some of that light to him. But if he does not have the capacity to bring down the light to them, they will ignore him completely and they will not want to become close to him and help him to ascend the light of his thoughts above because it is worthless and will not accomplish anything.
On the levels of prophecy and the matter of prophecy in the early generations, and what is the matter of attaining Ruach HaKodesh (holy spirit) which is possible to acquire in our times.
We have explained above how there are 4 worlds which are called Atzilut, Beriah, Yetzira, Asiyah. And below all of them is this lowly world which divides to 4 foundations (earth, water, wind, fire), they and their foundation soul powers (i.e. water for example has physical water, and also levels of souls which are found inside plants, animals, humans but not in rocks). And they (the worlds) are divided like 10 sefiros. We have also explained that in each world there is an internal light which is called the 10 sefiros. Outside of them is the light of the repository of souls. Outside of that is the light of the repository of angels. Outside of that is the dark light of the repository of the klipos. Finally outside of that is the world itself which are the rekiim (firmaments) of that world. And likewise mamash (literally) in this lowly world (i.e. this happens in a large scale, big picture of all the world, and also the smaller subsections have this form, namely:) Because in this world, the physical side of the 4 foundations (earth, water, wind, fire) is like the body and the world. Next inside it you have the other lights, each one contains the 4 levels of the foundation soul (i.e. the spiritual lights inside the 4 foundations are in the form of 10 sefiros just like all the worlds together. He's saying something else also which I don't understand.). There are also countless (spiritual levels) because each sefira includes within it 10 (sub)sefiros, and those also contain 10 (sub) sefiros, etc. in such a way that there that each world has countless levels.
We have already explained the matter of prophecy in gate 5, whereby the "thought" of the prophet spreads and ascends from level to level from below to above until it reaches to the place of attachment of the (primary) root of his soul. Then he would think to lift the light of the 10 sefiros until the "Ein Sof" (infinite light of G-d) and pull from there light, then return and descend it from level to level, from above to below on the levels which he previously ascended until he reaches below to his intellectual soul and it takes its portion of this light according to the measure of attachment of his primary soul above. From there he brings it down to the power of imagination in the "living soul" (nefesh chaya) in him and there the things are formed in the inner senses of the power of imagination or in the external (physical) senses.
Behold, the pulling of the thoughts (i.e. ascension of the thought and subsequent descent) certainly did not occur by itself, but rather through kavanos (special intents) and yichudim (a form of kabalistic meditation based on different permutations and combinations of the Divine names and attributes of G-d) which were transmitted to him from the (earlier) prophet who taught him to prophecy. Similar to the "sons" (students) of the prophets with Shmuel, Eliyahu and Elisha z'l, in order that with these yichudim that they would use to bring down the light and energy according to his will. This is the purpose of the matter of prophecy.
There were other techniques that they taught them, namely prayers, and pronouncing of special names to the guardians of the gates in the firmaments, and the "halls" in each of the worlds, from the end of the worlds which are the four foundations and the "spaces" between them - until the heights of the world of Atzilut, as mentioned in the zohar parsha vayakhel on the matter of the ascension of prayers (pg.201b). Likewise in the chapters of the halls and their beraisos (beraisos are teachings in the Jewish oral law not incorporated in the Mishnah). At first they would work to open the gates of that level and then unite the yichud and the prayer specific to that level. This is how they would ascend from level to level until they reached their primary root on high and they would rest there. Afterwards they would continue to push their thought until the "Ein Sof" (infinite) and return and bring down the energy below as described.
On the matter of the gates and the special names, this means they would swear in, using the power of a holy name which is from the sefira of that level, the angel which is rooted and hewn from there. And he (the angel) would be appointed on that gate which is in the firmament itself and is the "physicality" (so to speak) of that level. And the gate would have a special name that is known (to the prophets). He would then open it and the mind of the prophet would enter through the path of the gate from light to light until the innermost light of that sefira in that level. Then he would pray and unite the yichud which is needed there. Thus he would ascend from level to level.
Behold this is the matter of the vision of Yechezkel (see Ezekiel 1) which is called Maase Merkava (the matter of the chariot) being that the levels are riding one on top of the other.
Here is a quote from there to help the reader. note that the original hebrew has layers upon layers of hidden meanings and that the vision was spiritual and not to be taken purely literally:
(Yechezkel/Ezekiel 1) Now it came to pass in the thirtieth year, in the fourth month, in the fifth day of the month, as I was among the captives by the river Chebar that the heavens were opened, and I saw visions of G-d. 2 In the fifth day of the month, which was the fifth year of king Jehoiachin's captivity, 3 the word of the L-ORD came expressly unto Ezekiel the priest, the son of Buzi, in the land of the Chaldeans by the river Chebar; and the hand of the L-ORD was there upon him. 4 And I looked, and, behold, a stormy wind came out of the north, a great cloud, with a fire flashing up, so that a brightness was round about it; and out of the midst thereof as the colour of electrum (chashmal), out of the midst of the fire. 5 And out of the midst thereof came the likeness of four Chayos (living). And this was their appearance: they had the likeness of a man. 6 And every one had four faces, and every one of them had four wings. 7 And their feet were straight feet; and the sole of their feet was like the sole of a calf's foot; and they sparkled like the colour of burnished brass. 8 And they had the hands of a man under their wings on their four sides; and as for the faces and wings of them four, 9 their wings were joined one to another; they turned not when they went; they went every one straight forward. 10 As for the likeness of their faces, they had the face of a man; and they four had the face of a lion on the right side; and they four had the face of an ox on the left side; they four had also the face of an eagle (representive of the kings of chayos (beasts), behemas (domesticated animals), and birds respectively). 11 Thus were their faces; and their wings were stretched upward; two wings of every one were joined one to another, and two covered their bodies. 12 And they went every one straight forward; whither the spirit was to go, they went; they turned not when they went. 13 As for the likeness of the living creatures, their appearance was like coals of fire, burning like the appearance of torches; it flashed up and down among the living creatures; and there was brightness to the fire, and out of the fire went forth lightning. 14 And the living creatures ran and returned as the appearance of a flash of lightning. 15 Now as I beheld the living creatures, behold one wheel at the bottom hard by the living creatures, at the four faces thereof. 16 The appearance of the wheels and their work was like unto the colour of a beryl; and they four had one likeness; and their appearance and their work was as it were a wheel within a wheel. 17 When they went, they went toward their four sides; they turned not when they went. 18 As for their rings, they were high and they were dreadful; and they four had their rings full of eyes round about. 19 And when the living creatures went, the wheels went hard by them; and when the living creatures were lifted up from the bottom, the wheels were lifted up. 20 Whithersoever the spirit was to go, as the spirit was to go thither, so they went; and the wheels were lifted up beside them; for the spirit of the living creature was in the wheels. 21 When those went, these went, and when those stood, these stood; and when those were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up beside them; for the spirit of the living creature was in the wheels. 22 And over the heads of the living creatures there was the likeness of a firmament, like the colour of the terrible ice, stretched forth over their heads above. 23 And under the firmament were their wings conformable the one to the other; this one of them had two which covered, and that one of them had two which covered, their bodies. 24 And when they went, I heard the noise of their wings like the noise of great waters, like the voice of the Al-mighty, a noise of tumult like the noise of a host; when they stood, they let down their wings. 25 For, when there was a voice above the firmament that was over their heads, as they stood, they let down their wings. 26 And above the firmament that was over their heads was the likeness of a throne, as the appearance of a sapphire stone; and upon the likeness of the throne was a likeness as the appearance of a man upon it above. 27 And I saw as the colour of electrum, as the appearance of fire round about enclosing it, from the appearance of his loins and upward; and from the appearance of his loins and downward I saw as it were the appearance of fire, and there was brightness round about him. 28 As the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud in the day of rain, so was the appearance of the brightness round about. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the L-RD. And when I saw it, I fell upon my face, and I heard a voice of one that spoke. And He said unto me: 'Son of Adam, stand upon thy feet, and I will speak with thee.' 2 And spirit entered into me when He spoke unto me, and set me upon my feet; and I heard Him that spoke unto me...
In the beginning the heavens opened, i.e. the gates of the firmaments which are the lights of the physical and the vessels of that world. From there he entered the klipas as written "and I looked and, behold, a stormy wind..." and like it is written in Hoshea 1:2 "When G-d spoke in the beginning with Hosea" which means the beginning of the revelation of the word of prophecy which was a revelation of klipas (impurities) and its powers. Hence the woman of sin and the children of sin (spoken there). However once he was in the heavens, there he wanted to cling and look around, as it is written "the gates of heaven opened and I saw a vision of G-d", but when he reached the place of the klipas, he did not want to cling there but rather to split through and pass without clinging there just a (minimal) necessary gazing. And this is the secret meaning of Eliyahu (Melachim 1:19),
(And He said: 'Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the L-RD.' And, behold, the L-RD passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and broke in pieces the rocks before the L-ORD; but the L-ORD was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake; but the L-ORD was not in the earthquake;and after the earthquake a fire; but the L-ORD was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice.)
From there (the klipos) he (Yechezkel) entered the separation to the light of angels as is known because between each light there is a pargud (separating "veil") and this is the hidden secret of the matter of the "chashmal" (Yechezkel 1:4) which is the gematria (numerical value) of "malbush" (garment) and it is the vessel and "physicality" (so to speak) for the light of the angels, may G-d atone for me in revealing this hidden secret. And then he saw 10 groups of angels which are all divided to 4 Chayot and 4 encampments of the Shechina (Divine presence).
This is what is written "And inside it the form of 4 Chayos" (ibid 1:5). From there he entered until he reached the light of the 10 sefiros themselves. This is what is meant by "On the form of the chair, the appearance of a man..." And the chair itself is the light of the repository of souls (of men) - in the secret of "the fathers are the merkava (chariot)". Therefore the soul is called "kavod" (glory, like the "throne of glory" since the souls are the throne itself) as in the verse "So that my glory may sing praise to You, and not be silent" (Tehilim 30:13) or in "how long shall my glory be put to shame" (Tehilim 4:3).
Behold, I have revealed to you a deep secret which includes matters of the merkava which the earlier generations did not merit. We have already clarified above in gate 5 that not all prophets "suckle" from the same root because there are countless roots which are in fact 600,000 in each world. This is what is meant by our Rabbis' teaching "600,000 prophets arose in Israel, etc. and Moshe Rabeinu included all of them and was equal to all of them (combined)."
Now in a general way, we will clarify their levels. Because Moshe Rabeinu would ascend up to Atzilut and from there could actually (mamash) see. But it was through being cloaked in the world of Beriah only. And even this was in the way of passing only. Because the Atzilut alone is restricted (there are no angels, etc., there only G-d's presence since it is like the King's private chamber). And this is the secret meaning of "no man can see Me and live" (Shmos 33:20). The other prophets could see in Atzilut through being totally cloaked in the lights of Beriah. After the destruction of the temple, Yechezkel would prophecy from the Atzilut after being encloaked in the Beriah and the Beriah inside (the world of) Yetzira total encloakment. (in layman's term Moshe could see Atzilut through a television screen whereas the other prophets could see a television screen of Atzilut through a television screen of Beriah. R.Aryeh Kaplan) From then on, there is no revelation of the light of Atzilut or Beriah at all. This is what is meant by "After Chagai, Zecharia, and Malachi, prophecy stopped completely and only Ruach HaKodesh (holy spirit) remained" (Talmud Sanhedrin 61), which is bringing down the lights of Yetzira only from there to below. And this is what is referred to in the talmud as "the ascent to pardes" which is the Yetzira which is called the world of Metatron. And also for this there were known actions for opening the gates which are in the lowly world (here) and (others in) Asiyah and the Yetzira and to unite the yichudim and the prayers designated for the world of Yetzira and the 10 sefiros in it.
And this is the secret meaning of the actions of the "chapters of the halls" which were used by Rabi Nechunya, Rabi Akiva, Rabi Yishmael, and the men of the great assembly. Afterwards even these actions were forgotten, and also because we lost the purity of the ashes of the red heifer in the times of the Amoraim (talmudic sages) until the time of Abaye and Rava as mentioned in the talmud (Chagiga 25).
Therefore, they did not use from then on the ascent to Pardes and from then on they used only actions in the world of Asiya only. And it being the lowest of all the worlds and also since the angels there few are good and most are evil, and furthermore the good and the evil cling together very much, therefore there is no clear revelation (hasaga) because it is impossible to reveal good alone therefore the revelation is mixed with good and evil, truth and falsehood.
And this is also the matter of practical Kabala. Therefore it is forbidden to practice it, because inevitably he will also cling to the evil which is attached to the good. He thinks to purify his soul but defiles it through this evil. And even if he manages to attain, it will be truth mixed with falsehood. And especially since there are no ashes of the red heifer found today, and the impure forces of the klipos cling to the man who approaches to attain through practical kabala. Therefore, one who cares about his soul should distance himself from them. Because besides that he can defile himself, he will be punished in Gehinom. And even in this world we have a tradition that he or his descendants will either become poor, or seriously ill, or exterminated.
Take proof from Rebbi Yosef Deila Reina (an amazing "story to end all stories" about a master kabalist who sought to singlehandledly take down the forces of evil and almost succeeded. See the hebrew Shaarei Kedusha HaShalem) and Rebbi Shlomo Molcho who practiced practical kabala and was cast away from the world. All this because of what we said, namely that there is no good (in the lower worlds) without evil.
And also (another reason to stay away from practical Kabala) because the kabalist must force them (the angels guarding gates, etc.) by force through swearing in with holy names. Then they entice him and direct him to non-good directions until he loses his soul. And greater than this is that all the ways of swearing in (using holy names) were hidden by the early ones (early Sages) and we are not very proficient in their ways, and it is fitting to distance oneself from them completely.
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