And Jacob Sent Messengers
1) “For He will give His angels charge over thee, to keep thee.” When a person arrives in the world, the evil inclination immediately comes along with him and always complains about him, as it is written, “sin coucheth at the door.” Sin coucheth—this is the evil inclination. “At the door”—the door of the womb, meaning as soon as one is born.
2) David called the evil inclination by the name, “sin,” as it is written, “and my sin is ever before me,” because it makes man sin before his Master every day. And this evil inclination does not leave man from the day he is born and for all time. And the good inclination comes to a person from the time he comes to be purified.
3) And when does one come to be purified? When he is thirteen years of age. At that time, a man connects in both the good inclination on the right, and the evil inclination on the left. And these are really two appointed angels, and they are always with man.
4) If a man comes to be purified, the evil inclination surrenders before him and the right governs the left. And both the good inclination and the evil inclination join to keep man in all the roads he travels, as it is written, “For He will give His angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.”
5) The Creator summoned angels with Jacob, camps of appointees, since he comes complete with the upper tribes, who were all properly whole, as it is written, “And Jacob went on his way, and the angels of God met him.” Afterwards, when he was saved from Laban and parted him, Divinity joined him and camps of Holy Angels came to surround him. And he sent of these angels to Esau, as it is written, “And Jacob sent messengers.” Certainly, they were real angels.
6) “The angel of the Lord encamps round about them that fear Him, and delivers them.” It is written, “For He will give His angels charge over thee”—many angels. “His angels charge over thee”—angels as usual. The angel of the Lord encamps round about—Divinity, as it is written, “And the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush.” Hence, “the angel of the Lord encamps round about them that fear Him,” to surround them from all sides so as to save them. And when Divinity dwells within man, all the Holy hosts come there.
7) When King David was saved from Achish, king of Gath, the writing says, “The angel of the Lord encamps,” because Divinity has surrounded him and he was saved from Achish, from his people, and from all who attacked him. It is written, “and feigned himself wanton in their hands.” It should have said, “and feigned himself mad in their hands.”
8) However, this concerns the verse, “For I was envious at the wanton.” The Creator told him, “Please, you will still need it.” Because he arrived in the house of Achish and was attacked, it is written, “and feigned himself wanton in their hands,” and then came Divinity and stayed around David.
9) Thus, Divinity dwells only in her domain, which is the Holy Land. Thus, why was Divinity over him at Gath, which is abroad? He replies that certainly, she is not abroad, so no abundance will be sucked out of her. However, to save, she dwells abroad, as well. And here, when Jacob came from the house of Laban, all the Holy camps surrounded him and he did not remain alone.
10) Hence, why is it written, “And Jacob was left alone”? Where were all the camps of messengers that surrounded him and came with him, since he brought danger upon himself when he remained alone at night, and saw the danger with his eye? And since they came to guard him only from an invisible danger, they parted him. And then, before he put himself in danger, he said, “I am not worthy of all the mercies, and of all the truth, which Thou hast shown unto Thy servant.” These are the camps of holy messengers that surrounded him, and now parted him for he had put himself in visible danger.
11) The messengers parted him in order to leave him alone with Esau’s appointee, which came to him by permission from the Upper One. And these messengers went to chant in song, since at that time it was their time to chant in song before the Creator.
The messengers parted him for two reasons:
To leave him alone with the angel so he would fight him.
It was their time to chant in song; afterwards, they returned to him.
This is why it is written, “I am not worthy of all the mercies… and now I am become two camps.” The camp of Divinity and all his house were one camp, as it is written, “This is God’s camp.” Hence, why does it say, “two camps”? It indicates that he was complete with both discernments, both parts: white and red, Hassadim and Hochma, right and left.
12) That night was the dominion of the side of Esau—left without right. At that time, it is written, “Let there be light,” without the [Hebrew letter] Vav. This is the fourth night, which cannot shine because it is without Hassadim. For this reason, Jacob was left alone. Jacob, which is the sun, ZA, remained alone—without the Nukva—because the moon, Nukva, was covered from the sun. Also, the Creator’s guard was not entirely removed from Jacob because he could not prevail over him, as it is written, “And he saw that he prevailed not against him.”
13) Why did he not prevail against him? The angel looked to the right of Jacob and saw Abraham, which is the wholeness of the right line. He looked to Jacob’s left and saw Isaac, which is the wholeness from the left line. He looked to Jacob’s body and saw that he was included of right and left, that he was the wholeness of the middle line, and there is no clinging to the Sitra Achra in a place of wholeness, but in a place of dearth. This is why he could not prevail against him. Then, “he touched the hollow of his thigh, which is one pillar that is near the body, which is outside the body. There is a deficiency there, and hence the angel clung to it, “and the hollow of Jacob’s thigh was strained.”
14) “The angel of the Lord encamps round about them that fear Him, and delivers them.” Surrounded him from all sides so as to save him from Esau’s minister. And when Divinity dwelt within him, several armies and camps of messengers came with him, and from among these messengers, he sent to Esau.
15) Why did Jacob awaken to send messengers to Esau? Would it not be better to keep silent from him? However, Jacob said, I know that Esau is anxious for the father’s respect, and never vexed him. And I know that since my father is alive, I do not fear him. Therefore, now, as long as my father is alive, I want to appease him. He immediately hurried and sent messengers before him.
16) “Better is he that is ignoble and has a servant, than he that plays the man of rank and lacks bread.” This verse is said about the evil inclination because it always complains against people. And the evil inclination raises man’s heart and desire with pride, and man follows it, curling his hair and his head, until the evil inclination takes pride over him and pulls him to Hell.
17) One who does not follow the evil inclination and is not proud at all, who lowers his spirit, his heart, and his will toward the Creator, the evil inclination overturns and becomes his slave, since it cannot control him. On the contrary, that man controls it, as it is written, “and thou may rule over it.”
18) “…that plays the man of rank”: one who respects himself, curls his hair and prides in his spirit. He lacks bread—lacks faith, as it is written, “the bread of his God does he offer…the bread of their God do they offer.” Bread means Divinity. Here, too, bread is lacking, meaning lack of faith, which is Divinity.
19) “Better is he that is ignoble…” this is Jacob, who lowered his spirit before Esau so that afterwards, Esau will be his slave and he will rule over him and exist in him. “Let peoples serve thee, and nations bow down to thee.” Now it was not at all his time—for Jacob to rule over him. And he was ignoble because Jacob left him to the end of days. And in the end of days, the one who was of rank will then be his slave. The one who will then lack bread, Esau, will be a slave to the one who was given plenty of grain and wine, to Jacob.
20) Because Jacob knew that he was now needy of him, he became ignoble before him. By that, he was wiser and shrewder than on any deed he had ever done against Esau. And had Esau sensed this wisdom, he would have killed himself, so he would not come to it. But Jacob did everything wisely.
I Have Sojourned with Laban
21) “Thus shall ye say unto my lord Esau: Thus says thy servant Jacob: I have sojourned with Laban.” Jacob immediately opened, to turn into a slave before him so Esau would not look upon the blessings that his father had blessed him, because Jacob left them for the end of days.
22) What did Jacob see that he sent for Esau and said, “I have sojourned with Laban”? Did he do it on a mission from Esau? Rather, Laban the Aramean, a voice walked in the world, as no man has ever been saved from him, because he was the soothsayer of soothsayers and the greatest charmer, and the father of Be’or, and Be’or was the father of Balaam, as it is written, “Balaam… son of Be’or, the soothsayer.” And Laban was more versed in soothsaying and wizardry than them, but he still could not prevail over Jacob. And he wanted to destroy Jacob in several ways, as it is written, “A wandering Aramean was my father.” For this reason, he sent for him and said, “I have sojourned with Laban,” to let him know of his strength.
23) The whole world knew that Laban was the greatest of all sages and soothsayers and charmers. And one who Laban wished to destroy could not be saved from him. And all that Balaam knew came from Laban. It is written about Balaam, “for I know that he whom thou blesses is blessed.” It is all the more so with Laban. And the whole world feared Laban and his magic. Hence, the first word that Jacob sent to Esau was, “I have sojourned with Laban.” And not for a short time, but for twenty years was I belated with him.
24) And should you say that I have gained nothing by it, he told him, “And I have oxen, and asses.” These two are sentences, damaging, for when the two conjoin, they join only to damage the world. This means that it is not their way to harm, except when they conjoin. This is why it is written, “Thou shall not plow with an ox and an ass together,” since by doing so one causes these two varmints, ox and ass, to conjoin and damage the world.
25) “Flocks, and men-servants and maid-servants” are the lower Ketarim [plural of Keter] of the Klipot, which the Creator killed in Egypt. They are called, “first-born of cattle,” “first-born of the captive,” and the “first-born of the maid-servant. This is why it is written, “flocks, and men-servants and maid-servants.” Esau was immediately afraid and came to meet him. And he feared Jacob, as Jacob feared Esau.
26) It is like a person who is walking along the road, and as he walks, he hears of a certain robber who is lurking on the way. He meets a man and tells him, “Say, who are you?” He tells him, “I am from a regiment of a certain army.” He tells him, “Turn away from me, for all who come near me, I bring a serpent and I kill him.” That man went to the commander of the regiment and told him, “A man is coming; and anyone who comes near him, he throws a serpent at him, which bites him, and he dies.”
27) The commander of the regiment heard it and feared. He said, “It is best to walk toward him and appease him.” But when that man saw that commander, he feared and said, “Woe unto me, the commander will kill me know.” He began to bow and kneel before him. The commander said, “If he had a serpent who could kill, he would not bow like that before me.” The commander began to proud himself and said, “Since he bowed before me so, I will not kill him.”
28) “Thus says thy servant Jacob: I have sojourned with Laban and stayed with him for twenty years. And I bring a serpent to kill people.” Esau heard. He said, “Woe, who would rise against him, for now Jacob will kill me with his mouth” because he thought that since he had defeated Laban, Balaam’s father, his strength must be as great as the strength of Balaam, of whom it was said, “he whom thou blesses is blessed, and he whom thou curses is cursed,” and he can kill with his mouth. Thus, he began to walk toward him to appease him.
29) And when Jacob saw him, it is written, “Then Jacob was greatly afraid and was distressed.” And when he came near him, Jacob began to kneel and to bow before him, as it is written, “and bowed himself to the ground seven times.” Esau said, “if he had so much power, he would not have bowed before me,” and he began to pride himself.
30) It is written about Balaam, “And God came unto Balaam at night.” Of Laban it says, “And God came to Laban the Aramean in a dream of the night.” Thus, Laban was as great as Balaam. “Take heed to thyself that thou speak not to Jacob.” Laban did not chase Jacob by the power of men to wage war against him, because the power of Jacob and his sons was greater than theirs. Rather, he chased him to kill him with his mouth and to obliterate everything, as it is written, “A wandering1 Aramean was my father.” This is why it is written, “thou speak not,” and it is not written, “thou do not.”
31) This is the testimony that the Creator commanded to testify. It is written, “And thou shall speak and say before the Lord thy God: ‘A wandering Aramean was my father.” “…and say” means, as it is written, “Thou shall not bear false witness against thy neighbor,” and so he so bore against his brother.
32) It is written about Balaam, “he went not, as at the other times, to meet with enchantments,” for so is his way, because he was an charmer. Also, it is written about Laban, “I enchanted,” for he looked in his charms and his magic, to know Jacob’s dealings. And when he wanted to destroy Jacob, he wanted to destroy him with his soothsaying and charms, and the Creator did not leave Jacob, for He told him, “speak not.”
33) As Balaam, the son of Laban’s son said, “For there is no enchantment with Jacob,” meaning who can overcome them? This is because my old man wished to destroy their father with his enchantment and charms and failed, since the Creator did not enable him to curse, as it is written, “For there is no enchantment with Jacob, neither is there any divination with Israel.”
34) And Laban worked against Jacob with all ten kinds of soothsaying and magic from the illumination of the lower Ketarim but could not overcome him, since Laban had made them all against him and he did not succeed in harming him, as it is written, “and changed my wages ten times; but God suffered him not to hurt me.” And it is written, “unto the satyrs, after whom they go astray.” Counting are kinds,2 and ten kinds are of soothsaying and magic in the lower Ketarim of the Klipot, and Laban had made them all against him.
35) They are ten kinds: “divination, a soothsayer, or an enchanter, or a sorcerer, or a charmer, or one that consults a ghost or a familiar spirit, or a necromancer,” thus ten. And it seems as though he considers soothsaying as two kinds, since it is in plural tense [in Hebrew].
36) Divination and charm are two kinds, and they count as one degree. And when Balaam came up against Israel, he used divination, as it is written, “divination in their hand.” But against Jacob, Laban came with an enchantment, but he did not succeed, as it is written, “For there is no enchantment with Jacob, neither is there any divination with Israel.”
37) Balaam said to Balak, “Who can defeat them,” since all the divination and charms in our Ketarim from the illumination of the upper Malchut are crowned, and he, ZA, is tied to them in Israel, as it is written, “the Lord his God is with him, and the shouting for the King is in him.” This is why we cannot defeat them with our charms.
38) God forbid that Balaam knew something of the upper Kedusha [Holiness], since the Creator did not want any nation or tongue to use His name but only His Holy sons, Israel.
39) Those who are impure, impurity is made for them to be made impure. It is written about them, “he shall dwell alone; without the camp shall his dwelling be,” outside of Kedusha. And the impure calls upon the impure, as it is written, “and shall cry: ‘Unclean, unclean.’” This is because one who is impure calls upon the impure; every thing leans toward its own kind.
40) And is it fitting for Jacob, who was holy, to say that he was defiled by Laban and his charms? Perhaps it is considered a praise for him, for he said, “I have sojourned with Laban”? It is written, “I am Esau thy first-born.” And we should ask if it is appropriate for one as righteous as Jacob to change his name for the name of one how is impure? The answer is that in the Anochi [I am], the Taam [special pronunciation of the text] there is a stop, because there is a Pashta [a Taam that marks a stop] under the Anochi, and a Zakef Katon [a less noticeable stop then the Pashta] under “Esau thy first-born.” Their pronunciation separates the word “I am” from “Esau thy first-born,” and this means that he said, “I am”, who I am, but Esau is your first-born.
41) “And I have oxen, and asses,” meaning do not aim your heart and desire to that blessing that my father blessed me, to think that it came true in me. He blessed me, “Be lord over thy brethren, and thy mother’s sons will bow down to thee.” Because of that I tell you, “Your servant Jacob, unto my lord Esau. He blessed me with plenty of grain and wine, but it did not come true in me because I did not treasure them. Rather, “And I have oxen, and asses and flocks, and men-servants,” a shepherd in the field. He blessed me with the dew of the heaven and the oils of the earth. But it did not come true in me. I only sojourned with Laban as a stranger who had no home. It is even more so with the oils of the earth—it did not come true in me for I had no land; I only sojourned with Laban. And he said all that only so he would not look upon Jacob and envy him for the blessings and will complain about him.
This is why he said, “I have sojourned with Laban.” Not because he was vaunting about it before Esau. On the contrary, he mentioned it in condemnation, to prove to him that he was a stranger, without a land and without a home. And the reason he brings as proof the “I am Esau, your first-born,” is to prove to him that everything follows the intention and it is not considered that he sinned that he named himself with the name of an impure one. Here, too, he intended only to disgrace, and it is not considered that he sinned if it seems from the words that he was vaunting about his joining an impure man.
42) It is written about Jacob, “a quiet [in Hebrew—whole] man, dwelling in tents.” He is called a whole man because he dwells in two upper abodes, which are Bina and Malchut, Rachel’s tent and Leah’s tent, and he complements to this side and to that side, since he decides between the right line and the left and complements them. And when he said, “I have sojourned with Laban,” he did not say that he was defiled by the charms of Laban, but rather, “I have sojourned with Laban,” to show that his heart was whole, in gratitude for the grace and truthfulness that the Creator had done with him. The entire world knew of the deeds of Laban, and who could be spared from his complaints? And he wanted to destroy me, and the Creator saved me from his hand. It is for this reason that he said, “I have sojourned with Laban.” It was all so that Esau would not envy him for the blessings, so he would not think that they came true in him, and will not be vengeful toward him. It is written about that, “For the ways of the Lord are right,” and it is written, “Thou shall be whole-hearted with the Lord thy God.”
The Prayer of the Righteous
43) “We came to your brother, Esau.” He asks, “When he said, ‘We came to your brother,’ do we no know that he is Esau? Did Jacob had other brothers?” And he replies, “To Esau means that if you say that he has repented and is walking on a corrected path, it is not so. Rather, Esau is as wicked as before, and is also walking toward you.” And should you say, “Is he walking alone?” He is not, but four hundred men are with him.
44) And why was he told all that? It is because the Creator always desires the prayer of the righteous and crowns Himself with their prayer. That angel, Sandalfon, who is appointed over the prayer of Israel, takes all the prayers and makes of them a crown for Him That Lives Forever. It is even more so with the prayers of the righteous, which the Creator desires, and they become a crown for the Creator to crown Himself with these prayers. And should you say, “But the camps of holy angels were coming with Him; why did he fear?” The righteous do not rely on their purity, but on prayers and pleas to their Master.
45) A prayer of many rises before the Creator and the Creator crowns Himself with that prayer, since it rises in several ways. This is because one asks for Hassadim, the other for Gevurot, and a third for Rachamim. And it consists of several sides: the right side, the left, and the middle. This is so because Hassadim extend from the right side, Gevurot from the left side, and Rachamim from the middle side. And because it consists of several ways and sides, it becomes a crown over the head of the Righteous One That Lives Forever, Yesod, which imparts all the salvations to the Nukva, and from her to the whole public.
But a prayer of one does not comprise all the sides; it is only on one way. Either one asks for Hassadim or Gevurot or Rachamim. Hence, a prayer of one is not erected to be received like the prayer of many, as it does not include all three lines like the prayer of many.
Jacob comprised all three lines, since he was a chariot for the middle line, which contains both. This is why the Creator desired his prayer, as it was utterly complete, with all three lines, like the prayer of many. This is why it is written, “Then Jacob was greatly afraid and was distressed,” since the Creator arranged it for him so he would pray because He wanted his prayer.
46) “Happy is the man that fears always; but he that hardens his heart shall fall into evil.” Happy are Israel, for the Creator desires them and gave them the true law, to be rewarded by it with everlasting life. The Creator draws the upper life upon anyone who engages in Torah, and brings him to the life of the next world, as it is written, “for He is thy life, and the length of thy days.” And it is written, “and through this thing ye shall prolong your days,” because she is life in this world, life in the next world.
47) Anyone who engages in Torah Lishma [for Her name] does not die by the hands of the evil inclination, which is the angel of death, because he clings to the tree of life and does not let go of it. For this reason, righteous, who engage in Torah, their bodies are not impure after they die, since the spirit of impurity is not over them.
48) Jacob, who was the tree of life, why did he fear Esau? After all, the Sitra Achra cannot rule him? Moreover, the Creator told him, “And, behold, I am with thee,” so why was he afraid? It is written, “and the angels of God met him.” If the camps of the holy angels were with him, why was he afraid?
49) Indeed, in truth, he should not have been afraid. But Jacob did not want to rely on the Creator’s miracle. He thought he was not worthy of the Creator performing a miracle with him, since he did not serve his mother and father properly and did not engage in the Torah during the twenty-two years he had been with Laban, and he took two sisters. And even though it had all been settled that Jacob did not sin at all by that, still, one needs to always be afraid and plead in prayer before the Creator, as it is written, “Happy is the man that fears always.”
50) The prayer of the patriarchs kept the world, and all the people in the world live and rely on their righteousness. Forever and ever is this ancestral merit remembered, because ancestral merit is existence Above and below. And the existence of Jacob is more complete than of all of them. Hence, when a time of trouble came upon Jacob’s sons, the Creator saw Jacob’s image before Him and had mercy on the world, as it is written, “then will I remember My covenant with Jacob.” It spells Jacob with a Vav [in Hebrew] because the Vav is the shape of Jacob, since Jacob is a chariot for ZA, which is the Vav of the name HaVaYaH.
51) Anyone who sees Jacob, it is as though he is looking at an illuminating mirror, which is ZA, since the beauty of Jacob is like the beauty of Adam ha Rishon. Anyone who looked in his dream and saw Jacob covered in his clothes has gained life.
52) Before King David came to the world, he did not have a life at all, except for the seventy years that Adam ha Rishon gave him. This is why the life of King David was seventy years and the life of Adam ha Rishon was 1,000 years minus seventy. This is why Adam ha Rishon and David are in the first millennium since the creation of the world.
53) “He asked life of Thee, Thou gave it him; even length of days for ever and ever.” “He asked life of Thee” is King David. This is because when the Creator created the Garden of Eden and put King David’s soul in it, he gazed upon it and saw that it had no life of its own at all, and thus it stood before Him the whole day. Since He created Adam ha Rishon, he said, “This must be the life of David,” and from Adam ha Rishon these were the seventy years that King David lived in the world.
54) The patriarchs gave him of their lives, each and every one. Abraham gave him of his life, and so did Jacob and Joseph. Isaac did not leave him anything, since King David came from his side because King David is the Nukva from the left side, when it is darkness and not light. Hence, he had no life, since there is life only from the right side, ZA, called “The Tree of Life.”
Isaac, too, was from the left side, but he was included in Abraham, as it is written, “Abraham begot Isaac,” and also because of the tying [sacrifice of Isaac]. This is the reason why he had life. And this was only to himself, but he could not give life to David, since he is essentially from the left line and has no life of his own, but only by Hitkalelut [inclusion]. This means that Isaac, too, is from the left line, like David, and hence could not give him a life of his own.
55) Abraham gave him five years because he had 180 years to live, like Isaac, and he lived only 175 years, with five years missing.
Jacob should have lived in the world the same as the days of Abraham—175 years. But he lived only 147 years, with twenty-eight years missing. It follows that Abraham and Jacob gave him thirty-three years of their lives.
Joseph lived 110 years. He should have lived 147 years, like the days of Jacob. He is missing thirty-seven years. With Abraham and Jacob’s thirty-three, they are seventy years, which they gave King David to live in. And David lived in all those years, which the patriarchs had left for him.
56) Why did Isaac not leave him any of his life, as did Abraham, Jacob, and Joseph? It is because Isaac was darkness, from the left line, prior to his Hitkalelut with the right, and David came from the side of the darkness, from the left side. One who is in the dark has no light at all, no life. Hence, David had no life at all. But Abraham, Jacob, and Joseph had light because they shown upon King David from the right side, and he should shine from them and have life. This means that he must be included in the right because there is no life at all from darkness, from the left. This is why Isaac was not counted.
57) Why did Joseph leave him with more life than all of them—thirty-seven years—while they, only thirty-three? It is that Joseph alone is equal to all of them because he is called “righteous,” Yesod, containing all the Sefirot. This is why he shines to the moon, the Nukva, more than all of them. Hence, he left for King David more life than all of them, as it is written, “And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth.” The firmament is considered Yesod Tzadik [righteous], Joseph. And the earth is Nukva, King David. Thus, he shines for Nukva, Yesod, Joseph, and this is why he gave him more life than any of them.
58) Jacob’s prayer protected him from Esau, not his own merit. This is because he wanted to leave his merit for his sons after him, and not use it for himself now because of Esau. This is why he prayed to the Creator and did not rely on his merit for his salvation.
59) “And he divided the people… into two camps. …If Esau comes… then the camp which is left shall escape.” Question: Could it not be that Esau would strike both camps?
60) Divinity did not move from the tent of Leah and the tent of Rachel. Jacob said, “I know that they are kept by the Creator.” For this reason, “he put the handmaids and their children foremost,” so if Esau were to strike, he would strike these. But I am not afraid for the children of the mistresses because Divinity is with them. Hence, the meaning of “first” is first in danger. This is why he said, “the camp which is left,” since Divinity is with them. And because he did that, he made his prayer for the maids and their children.
61) “A Prayer for the poor shall envelop.” This is what King David said when he looked and saw the ways of the poor. He looked upon him when he was walking and fleeing his father in law, King Saul. This is a prayer—that the poor prays to the Creator—which is answered before all the prayers in the world.
62) It is written, “A prayer for the poor, and it is written, “A Prayer of Moses the man of God.” A prayer for the poor is a hand prayer [in the Tefillin], the Nukva, because the Nukva is called “poor,” since she has nothing of her own and must receive everything from ZA. The prayer of Moses is a head prayer [in the Tefillin], ZA. There should be no separation between a prayer for the poor and a prayer for Moses, between Nukva and ZA, since they should always be in a Zivug, and the two of them are regarded as one.
63) Hence, the prayer of the poor is always answered by the Creator before all other prayers in the world. A prayer for the poor, who is attached to his indigence as one who has nothing of his own.
64) “A prayer” implies Moses, who is ZA. “For the poor” implies David, who is the Nukva. “Shall envelop” means when the moon, Nukva, is covered, when the sun, ZA, is hidden from her. “…and pours out his complaint before the Lord [HaVaYaH, ZA],” to unite with the sun, ZA.
65) Every man’s prayer is a prayer. But the prayer of the poor is the prayer that stands before the Creator for it shatters gates and doors and enters and is admitted before Him. “…and pours out his complaint before the Lord,” as one who complains about the judgments of the Creator.
66) The prayer of the righteous is joy for the assembly of Israel, Nukva, to be crowned with the prayer before the Creator. This is the reason why it is more loved by the Creator than the prayer of the poor. And for this reason, the Creator desires the prayer of the righteous, when they should pray, because they know how to appease their Master.
67) It is written about Jacob’s prayer, “O God of my father Abraham, and God of my father Isaac, O Lord, who says unto me: Return…” He crowned and tied a knot in one proper tying. He said, “God of my father Abraham,” which is to the right, and “God of my father Isaac,” which is to the left, who says unto me, to himself, that it is the deciding middle line. Here, upon the middle line does it depend—to crown his place between them, between Abraham and Isaac, which are right and left. This is why he told him, “Return unto thy country, and to thy kindred, and I will do thee good.”
68) “I am not worthy of all the mercies,” said Jacob. You have promised to do good unto me, and I know that all Your deeds are on condition that Your will is done. And there is no merit in me for “I am not worthy of all the mercies, and of all the truth, which Thou hast shown unto Thy servant.” Therefore, You do not need to keep your promise to me, and all that You have done for me to this day was not because of my merit. Rather, You did this because of Your kindness. And all that mercy and the truth was for Your kindness, for when I first crossed the Jordan, while I was fleeing Esau, I crossed that river alone, and You did unto me grace and truth. And now I cross the river with two camps.
69) Thus far he established the praise of his Master; from here on he should ask what he needs, to show to all the people in the world that a person should first establish the praise of his Master, and then pray his prayer.
70) “Deliver me, I pray Thee, from the hand of my brother”; after he established the praise, he prayed his prayer. This implies that one who prays his prayer, his words should be properly interpreted. When he said, “Deliver me, I pray Thee,” it seems as though it should have sufficed, since he does not need more than deliverance. Yet, he told the Creator, “And should You say that You have already saved me from Laban?” This is why he explained, “from the hand of my brother.” And if you say that other kin are called brothers, too, he therefore explained, “from the hand of Esau.” This is so because we need to interpret the matter properly. Why do I need deliverance? Because I fear lest he will come and strike me. And all of that is to explain the matter above.
71) “And Thou said: I will surely do thee good.” He asks, “What is, ‘And Thou?’” And he replies, the Nukva is called thou, as it is written, “Thou preserves them all…”
72) King David said, “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable before Thee.” “The words of my mouth”—explicit words. “The meditation of my heart”—abstruse thing, which one cannot interpret in one’s mouth. Meditation, which is in the heart, he cannot interpret.
73) This is why it should be something that is interpreted orally, “the words of my mouth,” and something that is dependent upon the heart and is not interpreted by the mouth, “the meditation of my heart,” for it is all secret. One corresponds to the lower degree, the Nukva, and one corresponds to the upper degree, Bina. The thing that is interpreted by the mouth corresponds to the lower degree, which should be interpreted—the revealed world. That thing, which is dependent upon the heart, corresponds to a more internal degree, Bina, the covered world. But both are needed; this is why he said, “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable before Thee.”
74) “…and [I will] make thy seed as the sand of the sea, which cannot be numbered for multitude.” There is Mochin of a number, which is interpreted orally—the illumination of Hochma, which is revealed by the Nukva, called Peh [mouth], and there is Mochin without a number—covered Hassadim, which extend from Bina and are called “the meditation of my heart.”
In the beginning, Jacob said, “And Thou said: I will surely do thee good,” Mochin of a number. This is why he put the Name first. And You are the revealed world. Afterwards he said, which cannot be numbered, which are Mochin without a number that extend from the covered world, covered Hassadim. And both are needed.
Happy are the righteous who know how to properly establish the praise of their Maker, and then to pray their prayer. This is why it is written, “And He said unto me: ‘Thou art My servant, Israel, in whom I will be glorified.’”
And Jacob Was Left Alone
75) When the Creator created the world, He performed the proper task each day. On the fourth day, He created the lights. And then the moon was created deficient, as she is a light that diminished itself. And because she is Me’orot [lights] without the Vav [in Hebrew], it became possible for all the ghosts, demons, stormy winds and damagers, and all the impure spirits to govern.
76) They all rise and roam the world to fool people. They became appointed in places whose settlements were ruined, in hard fields, unfit for sowing, and in dried out deserts. And all come from the spirit of impurity. We learned that the spirit of impurity that comes from the Slant Serpent, which is Lilith, is the actual spirit of impurity. And it was appointed in the world to lure people toward him; this is why the evil inclination rules over the world.
77) It was appointed among men and he is with them. He comes to them with guile and with deceit, to lure them off the path of the Creator. As he fooled Adam ha Rishon, and caused death to the entire world, so it fools people and causes them to be defiled.
78) And one who comes to be defiled draws upon himself that spirit of impurity and adheres to it. There are several spirits of impurity, which are destined to defile him; they defile him and he becomes impure. And he is defiled in this world and in that world.
79) But when one comes to be purified, that spirit of impurity surrenders before him and cannot rule over him. At that time, it is written, “There shall no evil befall thee,” which is Lilith, and “neither shall any plague come nigh thy tent” are the rest of the damagers.
80) One should not walk out alone at night, all the more so when the moon begins and it is deficient and does not shine to its fullest. This is so because then the spirit of impurity governs and it is an evil spirit. This evil spirit is the evil serpent. And the affliction is the one riding the serpent, which is Sam’el. The evil and the affliction are as one.
81) “…the stripes of the children of men,” who were born from Adam. In those years, when Adam did not come to his wife, the spirits of impurity came and were warmed by him and begot from him. And these are called “the stripes of the children of men.” Even though we learned that stripes are demons that were born from Adam, it still does not contradict our words that the affliction is Sam’el, riding the serpent, for they are two discernments.
82) When one dreams and does not control one’s body, and the body is still, the spirit of impurity comes over him. And sometimes the spirits of impure females come near him and pull him with them and are warmed by him, and beget spirits and damagers. And sometimes they appear as people with no hair on their heads.
83) In any case, one should watch out for them, to walk in the ways of Torah and to not be defiled by them. This is because there is no one who sleeps in his bed at night, who does not taste the taste of death and whose soul does not depart. And since the body remains without the holy soul, the spirit of impurity is destined to be over him, and he is defiled. And one should not put one’s hands to one’s eyes in the morning because the spirit of impurity is over him.
84) Although Jacob was beloved by the Creator, still, since he was left alone, another spirit was destined to become attached to him.
85) It is written about that wicked one, Balaam, “And he went to a bare height.” What is “bare height”? Alone. It is as though you say, “My way is a lone one,” like that serpent that walks alone and lurks on roads and trails. Similarly, Balaam was walking alone, to extend the spirit of impurity upon himself, for anyone who walks alone at certain times, even in the city—in certain places—draws upon himself the spirit of impurity.
86) For this reason, one should not walk alone on the way and in the city, but in a place where people come and go. Hence, one should not walk out alone at night, because there are no people at that time. And this is the reason why “his body shall not remain all night upon the tree,” so as to not keep in the land a dead body, without spirit, during the night.
87) “And there a man wrestled with him.” What is “wrestled”? It is written, “Dust is second to earth.” What differs dust from earth? What remains from a thing that’s been burned in fire is called dust, and it never bears fruit. Earth means that all the fruits that come from it, including everything, above and below. Nukva de ZA is called “Earth,” and she includes all the worlds and all her offshoots in BYA. Nukva of Sam’el is called “dust,” which is another god, which does not bear fruit, and is therefore called “dust.”
88) If earth is so important, what is the meaning of “He raises up the poor out of the dust”? It implies lowliness, but in this way, “He raises up the poor out of the dust” because the Nukva, called “earth,” has nothing of its own, but receives everything from ZA. And the poor, who has nothing, comes out of that earth, which has nothing, when she is not in Zivug with ZA. And when that earth is in Zivug with ZA, all the fruits and all the goodness in the world emerge from it, and all the deeds in the world are done in it, as it is written, “all are of the earth, and all return to earth.”
And we learned that “all are of the earth,” even the sun. But dust does not bear fruit in the world. Hence, “a man,” Sam’el, “wrestled,” who came in that dust—his Nukva—and rode it, to complain on Jacob.
89) “…until the breaking of the day.” At that time, his reign passes. So it will be in the future, since the exile is now like a long night, darkness. And that dust governs Israel and they are thrown to the earth until the light rises and the day shines. And then Israel will govern and the kingdom will be given to them, for they will be the holy ones of the Upper One.
Let Me Go for the Day Breaks
90) When the Creator erects Israel and delivers them from exile, a very small and thin vent of light shall open to them. And then another, a little bigger opening will open for them, until the Creator opens for them the upper gates that are open to the four directions of the world. It is so that their salvation will not appear at once, but like the dawn, which shines gradually brighter until the day is set.
91) And all that the Creator does to Israel and to the righteous among them, when He delivers them bit by bit and not all at once, is like a person who is in the dark and has always been in the dark. When you want to give him light, you first need to light a small light, like the eye of a needle, and then a little bigger. Thus, every time some more until all the light properly shines for him.
92) Such are Israel. And also, one who is healed is not healed at once. Rather, it comes bit by bit until he is healed. But for Esau, it shone at once, and gradually waned, until Israel grow strong and blot him out from the whole of this world and from the next world. And because the day lit up for him at once, he had ruin from everything. But the light of Israel gradually increases until they gain strength and the Creator shines for them forever.
93) The dawn is the beginning of the morning, the thickening darkness before the light of day. This is the afore-mentioned very fine light. And afterwards, it is as handsome as the moon, since the light of the moon is more than the light of the dawn. And afterwards it is as bright as the sun, whose light is bright and shines more than the moon. And afterwards it is “as terrible as an army with banners.” This means that it is bright, with properly bright light. “…as an army with banners” are four banners that contain twelve tribes, which are the complete fullness of the Nukva.
94) When the day is still dark, the light is covered, and the morning comes to shine, it begins with shining just a little, until the light increases properly. Similarly, when the Creator awakens to shine for the assembly of Israel, He will first shine like the dawn, which is black, and then as handsome as the moon, and then as bright as the sun, and then “as terrible as an army with banners.”
95) Since the dawn has risen, it does not say, “The dawn has come,” but rather, “The day breaks.” This is so because when the dawn comes, that appointee over Esau prevails and bites Jacob, because that appointee bit Jacob in order to give Esau the courage to prevail.
96) But when the beginning of the dawn rises, the light comes and Jacob prevails. This is because then comes his time to shine, as it is written, “And the sun rose upon him as…” “… the sun rose upon him” because then was the time to shine.
97) “…and he limped upon his thigh.” This implies that when Israel are in exile and suffer pains and sorrow and several hardships, when the day shines for them and they have rest, then they will look, and their hearts will ache from all the hardships and the troubles they had suffered, and they will wonder about them. It is written about that, “And the sun rose upon him,” the sun of the time of rest. And then, “he limped upon his thigh,” which aches and regrets what he had suffered.
98) When the morning broke, Jacob prevailed and gripped him, for the strength of the angel weakened because he has dominion only at night, and Jacob rules during the day. It is said about that, “And he said: ‘Let me go, for the day breaks,’” for I am in your domain.
The Sinew of the Thigh-Vein
99) “Therefore the children of Israel eat not… in the sinew of the thigh-vein.” It is even forbidden enjoy it, and is even forbidden to give it to a dog. And why is it called, “the thigh-vein”? He replies that it is because it causes to forget, deflecting people from the work of their Creator, and there lays the evil inclination.
100) And since the angel struggled with Jacob, he did not find a place in his body where he could overcome Jacob, since all of the organs in Jacob’s body assisted him, since they were all strong and there was no weakness in them, and the Klipa grips only to a place of dearth and weakness.
“…he touched the hollow of Jacob’s thigh, …the sinew of the thigh-vein”—his kind, the evil inclination, which is his kind, and the place of the evil inclination. From there the evil inclination comes unto people. Since the sinew of the thigh-vein is the place of the evil inclination, which is the kind of the angel Sam’el, he thus had the power to grip there.
101) This is why the Torah said, “Therefore the children of Israel eat not the sinew of the thigh-vein.” And for this reason, any eating of an animal’s organ strengthens its corresponding organ in the one who eats. Certainly, the sinew of the thigh-vein strengthens the evil inclination, which is his kind. The children of Israel do not eat it, since they are not of its side and of its kind, but the idol worshipping nations do eat it because they are from the side and the kind of their angel, Sam’el, and he strengthens their hearts.
102) There are 248 organs in a man, corresponding 248 Mitzvot [commandments] in the Torah, which were given to do, and corresponding 248 angels, in which Divinity has been clothed, and whose name is as the name of their Master.
103) And there are 365 tendons in a man, corresponding 365 Mitzvot, which were not given to do, which the thigh-vein sinew is one of them, and corresponding to the 365 days of the year, in addition to the ten penitential days, which the ninth of Av [eleventh month in the Hebrew calendar] is one of them. This corresponds to the angel, Sam’el, who is one of the 365 angels that control the 365 days of the year. It turns out that the ninth of Av among the 365 days of the year and the thigh-vein sinew in the 365 tendons are one discernment. This is why the Torah said, “the children of Israel eat not ET [the] sinew of the thigh-vein.” ET [acronym of the Hebrew letters Aleph–Tav] includes the ninth of Av, when a person neither eats nor drinks, since it is the same discernment as the thigh-vein sinew.
104) This is why the Creator saw everything. And an inkling for Jacob is implied in the words, “and a man wrestled with him,” during all the days of the year and all of Jacob’s organs. But it did not find a place to hold except in the thigh-vein sinew, and Jacob’s strength promptly faded. In the days of the year, it found the ninth of Av, in which Sam’el prevailed and we were sentenced, and the Temple was ruined. And anyone who eats on the ninth of Av it is as though he eats the thigh-vein sinew. And had the strength of Jacob’s thigh not weakened, Jacob could have overcome it, and Esau’s strength would break above and below.
105) “And there hath not arisen a prophet in Israel such as Moses.” What differs Moses from the rest of the prophets in the world? Moses looked in the illuminating mirror, ZA, and the rest of the prophets looked only in a mirror that was not illuminating, the Nukva. Moses heard the prophecy, stood on his legs, and his strength grew. He knew things for certain, as it is written, “manifestly, and not in dark speeches.” The rest of the prophets fell on their faces during prophecy and their strength weakened; they could not fully clarify the matter, since it is written, “because he touched the hollow of Jacob’s thigh, … and he limped upon his thigh.” This is so because the prophecy is from Netzah and Hod of ZA, which are the two thighs, and since the thigh was scathed, their prophecy was therefore not sufficiently lucid.
106) And all these prophets could not perceive what the Creator was going to do to Esau, except for Prophet Obadiah [Ovadiah], who was a proselyte who came from the side of Esau. He thoroughly understood in the matter of Esau and his strength did not fade, as it is written in the book, Obadiah.
107) And the strength of the rest of the prophets faded and they could not stand and perceive matters properly and thoroughly. This is so “because he touched the hollow of Jacob’s thigh, even in the sinew of the thigh-vein,” which took and sucked out all of the thigh’s strength. This is why the strength of the thigh was broken, and he remained “limped upon his thigh,” since all the prophets of the world could not attain and endure it.
108) When one who studies Torah has none to support him, none to toss money for produce into his pocket, to strengthen him, this is why the Torah is forgotten in every generation. The strength of the Torah wanes further every day, for those who engage in the Torah have not what to rely on, as it is written, “he limped upon his thigh.” They do not give strength and support to the disciples of the wise so they can engage in Torah. For this reason, the evil Malchut strengthens every day.
How much has this sin caused? And because the Torah, which is ZA, has no one to properly support her, the supports of ZA—Netzah and Hod de ZA—grew weak, and they cause the one without shins and legs, which is the primordial serpent, to stand over them.
109) “And the Lord God said…upon thy belly shall thou walk,” since his supports were broken and his legs chopped off, and he has nothing to stand on. So are Israel: if they do not want to rely on the Torah, to provide for disciples of wise, who engage in the Torah, they give the serpent support and shins to stand on and be strengthened in. This is so because the Sitra Achra is built of deficiency in the Kedusha [holiness].
110) How much deceit and cunningness did that rider of the serpent, Sam’el, devise against Jacob on that night? It is because he knew, as it is written, “The voice is the voice of Jacob, but the hands are the hands of Esau,” for if the voice of Jacob—the voice of Torah—ceases, then the strength is given to the hands—the hands of Esau. Hence, he looked to all sides to harm Jacob and to cease the voice of Torah.
111) But he saw him strong in every way. He saw the arms, Hesed and Gevura, called “Abraham” and “Isaac,” which are strong. He saw the body, Jacob, who unites the two arms and strengthens between them. And the saw the power of his Torah, that he was powerful in every way. Then “he saw that he prevailed not against him.” What did he do? He promptly “touched the hollow of his thigh,” the supports of the Torah, he schemed against him. He said that since the supports of the Torah were broken, the Torah will promptly become unable to strengthen further, and then what their father said, “The voice is the voice of Jacob, but the hands are the hands of Esau” will come true. And also, “when thou shall break loose, that thou shall shake his yoke from off thy neck.”
112) This is how he schemed against Jacob, since Esau grew stronger, to break the power of his Torah. And when he saw that he could not harm his Torah, he weakened the strength of those who support the learners of Torah, since if there is no one to support the learners of Torah, the voice will not be the voice of Jacob, and the hands will be the hands of Esau.
113) And when Jacob saw that, when the day broke, he attacked him and prevailed over him until he blessed him and thanked him for the blessings, and told him, “Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel.” “…no more Jacob” indicates deceit, as it is written, “for he hath supplanted me these two times,” since if Israel is in pride and power, there is none who can defeat you, since the name “Israel,” indicates authority and pride, as it is written, “for thou hast striven with God and with men, and hast prevailed.”
114) Several armies spread to each side from this serpent, and they exist in the world among people. And they need to maintain that thigh-vein sinew because even though the rider on the serpent, Sam’el, comes near him, he exists and persists in the color, and does not break.
320 Nitzotzin [sparks] fell in the breaking of the vessels in the world of Nekudim. These are ten Sefirot, and in each, thirty-two discernments broke. There are eight Melachim [Kings]: Daat, Hesed, Gevura, Tifferet, Netzah, Hod, Yesod, and Malchut. In each of them are four Behinot, HB TM, thus thirty-two. And ten times thirty-two are 320 in Gematria.
The upper nine in them are sorted and corrected by the Emanator, who built the four worlds ABYA from them, and through the righteous in keeping Torah and Mitzvot, which are nine times thirty-two, which are 248 in Gematria. But their last Sefira, Malchut, which consists of thirty-two Behinot, as well, remained unsorted within the Klipot, and cannot be sorted and corrected during the 6,000 years. This is why it is called, “the stony heart,” since it is forbidden to sort out from her unless one is very cautious to sort only the 248 Nitzotzin. Thus, during the 6,000 years, it is sorted by itself, without any act from below. And then it is said about her, “I will take away the stony heart” from within you, which is the thirty-two Behinot in the Kli of Malchut that broke and clothed in the Klipot. Thus, the correction is only in the hands of the Emanator, not in the hands of man.
It is known that there is World, Year, Soul in everything. In the stony heart, too, there are World, Year, Soul. World is the primordial serpent, which Sam’el rode; Year—the ninth of Av; and Soul—the thigh-vein sinew.
It is written, “And when he saw that he prevailed not against him.” This was because Jacob was complete with all 248 Nitzotzin, which he has completely corrected. Then, “he touched the hollow of his thigh,” the sinew of the thigh-vein, since this was not yet sorted. And for this reason, “and the hollow of Jacob’s thigh was strained,” since as Sam’el has the power to ride the serpent, he also has the power over the thigh-vein sinew, for they are one discernment—one is in World and the other is in Soul.
It is written, “And there a man wrestled with him.” The thigh-vein sinew is the stony heart in Soul, and the ninth of Av is the stony heart in Year. They were not sorted out from among the Klipot, which is why he clung to them. Eating means sorting out the Klipot. And since the thigh-vein sinew is the stony heart, it must not be sorted by man. This is the reason for the prohibition on eating on the ninth of Av, for on that day, which is the stony heart, sorting is forbidden. Thus, the prohibition of the thigh-vein sinew and the prohibition on eating on the ninth of Av are one and the same.
And although it is forbidden to sort it and eat it, since the Klipot cling to it, we are still commanded to keep it for the future, until it is corrected by the Emanator. This is so because even though Sam’el clung to it, by doing so, he did not annul it, for although there is no correction at its very essence, there is correction in its color. Its color, which is black, consists of the three colors of Kedusha in the first nine Sefirot, and receives illumination and correction from them, so it will exist in a manner that is suitable for sorting in the future.
115) And we should increase the power of Kedusha in the world and show, as it is written, “for thou hast striven with God and with men, and hast prevailed.” And when he sees that the thigh-vein sinew did not break, for it is given illumination for sustenance, and that place is not eaten, since they keep from eating it, meaning sorting, then the power and authority of Sam’el breaks, and he cannot harm the children of Jacob. This is why we need not allow the people of the world to eat it and enjoy it.
116) For “he touched the hollow of Jacob’s thigh.” It is written here, “he touched the hollow.” And there it is written, “Whosoever touches the dead.” There it is impurity and here it is impurity, as well, since Sam’el defiled the thigh-vein sinew and we must not enjoy an impure place whatsoever, all the more so a place to which that the side of impurity, Sam’el, drew near. And the Torah does not say more, only “he touched,” as it is written, “he touched the hollow of his thigh.” It is also written, “And whatsoever the unclean person touches shall be unclean,” indicating that Sam’el defiled that place with his touch.
And Bowed Down to the Earth
117) “For thou shall bow down to no other god.” But Jacob, the senior among patriarchs—who was selected as a whole part to the Creator and drew very close to Him—how did he bow before that wicked one, Esau, who is on the side of the other god? And one who bows before him bows before another god! And should you say that it is because they said, “the fox whose time has come bowed before him,” it is an allegory: there is a time when the fox rules over all the animals. At that time, even though he is the smallest of the animals, everyone bows before him. Here, too, you will say that this is why Jacob bowed before Esau, since this was his time. But this is not so, since Esau is like another god, and Jacob will never bow down to that side and to that part.
118) We learned that it is forbidden to greet the wicked first. If it is forbidden, why did David say it unto wicked Nabal? And you said good for Him, meaning to Him that lives forever, the Creator, and not to Nabal, while Nabal thinks that he speaks to him.
119) Such as this, “And Israel bowed down upon the bed’s head.” Was he bowing before his son? Rather, he was bowing before Divinity, who was at the head of the bed, because Divinity is next to the sick man’s head. Here, too, “And he passed over before them. He is the Upper Divinity, who was walking before him, and she is the Upper guarding, which was watching over him. Since Jacob saw her, he said, “Now the time has come to bow before the Creator, who was walking before him.”
120) “…and bowed himself to the ground seven times, until he came near to his brother.” It does not say, “they bowed themselves before Esau.” Rather, since he saw that the Creator was walking before him, he bowed before Him, to not give honors, to bow before another one besides Him. Happy are the righteous whose every deed is for the glory of their Lord, so they will not stray to the right or to the left from the straight and middle way.
And Embraced Him, and Fell on His Neck
121) There are sublime secrets in the words of Torah, which are different from one another, but are all one.
122) “But the wicked are like the troubled sea; for it cannot rest.” This is Esau, whose every deed is in wickedness and sin. And when he came to Jacob, his deeds were not wholesome. “And fell in his neck,” meaning one neck, since the Yod, which is the neck of the entire world is missing.
“And fell in his neck,” not on his necks, with a Yod,3 because the Temple was ruined twice—once by Babylon and once by the hand of Esau. It turns out that Esau threw himself on Jerusalem and ruined it only once. This is why it is written, “…and fell in his neck,” once, without a Yod, which means that he ruined it only once.
123) “…and kissed him, punctuated above the letters, indicating that he did not kiss him willingly. And the words, “but deceitful are the kisses of an enemy,” are Balaam. When he blessed Israel, he did not bless them with the will of the heart. And here, too, “deceitful are the kisses of an enemy” is Esau.
124) “Thou hast broken the teeth of the wicked.” We learned to not read, Shibarta [broke], but Shirbavta [stuck out], as it was said about Esau that his teeth stuck out since he sought to bite him.
125) Hence, “they wept.” How much did Esau’s mind and heart sought to harm Jacob? Even when he kissed him he thought, in time he will do him harm and stop him. Hence, “they wept.” One was weeping because he thought he would not be saved from him, and the other was weeping because his father was alive and he could not overcome him and kill him.
126) Certainly, Esau’s anger calmed when he saw Jacob, since he agreed with Esau’s appointee, who reconciled with him and agreed with the blessings. This is why Esau could not restrain his anger, for everything in the world depends upon Up High: when they are first decided above, so they are decided below. And also, there is no government below until the government is given from above. And also, everything depends on each other, for all that is done in this world depends on what is done above.
Please My Lord Pass Over before His Servant
127) “Please my lord pass over before his servant.” Jacob did not want to receive these first blessings that his father blessed him now, and not one of them has come true in him, since he put them off for the end of days, when his sons would need them, to use them against all the nations of the world.
128) For this reason, when Esau said, “Let us take our journey, and let us go,” and divide this world between us and govern it together, Jacob said, “Please my lord pass over before his servant.” This means that first Esau will rule this world. “Please pass over” implies preference, as it is written, “and their king is passed on before them, and the Lord at the head of them.” Jacob told him, “you control the world first, and I will journey on leisurely and raise myself to the next world. But in the end of days, for these days that walk slowly.
129) “…according to the work.” What work? This is the mirror that does not shine, which is the Nukva de ZA, through which all the work in the world is done. “…that are before me” is the Nukva. It is everywhere, before the Lord, which is ZA. “…and according to the children” are the Cherubim, small faces, to show the faith, which is the Nukva to which Jacob clings, since the Nukva lives on these Mochin.
130) “…until I come.” Jacob told him, I will tolerate your exile until my time to govern the Mount of Esau comes, as it is written, “And saviors shall come up on mount Zion to judge the mount of Esau.” At that time, the Lord will have the kingship.
And Built Him a House
131) “And Jacob journeyed to Succoth.” When the Creator, who is ZA, wished to create the world, to build Partzuf Nukva, called “world,” he took a knot, which is the Masach, out of the hard spark, when ZA rose for MAN to Ima, and a level of Hassadim came out there on his Masach de Hirik. This level is the middle line that connects the two lines—right and left of Bina—to one another. This is why it is called “a knot and was set alight from within the dark, as it was included in the left line, which is darkness, and its illumination is considered setting alight, as in “creator of the light of the fire.” And this illumination, which was illumination of Hochma, remains in ascent, as it shines from below upwards. His own illumination, which is Hassadim, descends, as it shines from above downwards. This is because when the middle line connects the two lines—right and left—to one another in a way that both shine, it keeps the illumination of the left so it will shine from below upwards, and the illumination of the right from above downwards.
After he explains the manner of emergence of the connection—the middle line—and how he properly corrected both illuminations, he now explains how the left line, the darkness, is itself included of all three lines, and emanates them to the Nukva. That darkness, the left line, is blazing and shines in 100 trails, in ways finer than fine, and in ways that are great, and they become the house of the world, from which the Nukva, called “home,” is built.
Yesodot [plural for Yesod, foundation] de AVI are called “trails,” and Yesodot of YESHSUT are called “ways.” It is known that the right line is AVI, which shine in pure air—covered Hassadim—and the left line is YESHSUT, which shine in illumination of Hochma—the Yod that departed the Avir [air] and left Ohr [light]. This is why he calls the Hitkalelut [mingling] of the left in the right line, “100 trails,” since he receives from Yesodot AVI, called “trails.” And the number, 100, is from YESHSUT, which are counted as hundreds.4
And the illumination of Hochma on the left extends from Yesodot YESHSUT, called “ways.” They are divided into two discernments:
Before it is included in the middle line, it is called “fine ways,” since then they are blocked and frozen;
After it is included in the middle line, it is called “great ways,” since then it shines abundantly.
Fine ways are from the left line itself, the great are from the middle line, and after the dark, which is the left, is included in all three lines, the Nukva, called “the house of the world,” is built out of it.
132) That house is in the middle of everything, in the middle line of all the trails and ways. In those that are considered great ways, the Nukva has several doors and rooms, round about the higher Holy places. This is where the birds of the sky nest, each kind separately.
The NHY of Nukva are called “doors,” and her HGT are called “rooms.” They receive from the three lines, which are included of the left of Ima, originally called “three places.” The doors and the rooms receive from the three places of Ima, which are the higher, Holy places. The birds of the sky are the Angels above.
After he explains the construction of the Nukva, he clarifies the order of ZA’s imparting to the Nukva. He says, “Within him emerges one large tree,” which is ZA, which imparts its branches and many fruits into the house and feeds all. It contains both the bestowal of Hassadim and bestowal of Hochma, and each receives its own discernment from it.
That tree rises up to the clouds of the heaven, for illumination of Hassadim, called “clouds,” and is covered between three mountains, as it is written, “there are no mountains but only fathers,”—HGT, in which the Hassadim are covered so as to not receive illumination of Hochma.
And it emerges from under these three mountains, at the NHY below HGT—rises up and climbs down. Below HGT, the Hassadim come out and appear in illumination of Hochma, through the middle line that preserves the right and the left. The middle line emerges from the cover of HGT and preserves the illumination of right and left, so that the illumination of the left will shine from below upwards, and the illumination of the right will shine from above downwards.
133) This house, Nukva, receives two kinds of illuminations from ZA: 1) When she is watered by it with illumination of Hochma, called “drinking”; 2) When ZA conceals many sublime, uncharted treasures within the house, meaning illumination of Hassadim from AVI, called “hidden” and “unknown.” By that, the house is built and improved.
That tree, ZA, appears during the day and covers at night. And that house, the Nukva, governs at night and is covered during the day.
Also, at night, which is the illumination of the left, darkness, since the Hochma is without Hassadim and cannot shine, there is emergence of the middle line, the Hitkalelut of left in right, as well as the Zivug of ZON. It is all as it is during the day. The only difference is in the governance, because all three lines shine at night, too, and ZA is in Zivug with Nukva as during the day. However, Nukva has control, and ZA and the right line are subordinate to her and are seemingly covered, to make room for her dominion, as it is written that at that time, the Creator enters the Garden of Eden—the Nukva—to play with the illumination of Hochma in her. Hence, the illumination of Hassadim is not apparent and she is darkness and not light.
It is to the contrary during the day. At that time, the Nukva is subordinate to ZA, the illumination of the Nukva is covered, ZA governs, and only the illumination of Hassadim—the quality of ZA—is apparent. But there is no difference between day and night in the order of the building and the order of the Zivug.
134) When darkness comes and the Nukva connects to it, she governs and shines in Hochma, which is her governance. And since she lacks Hassadim, all her openings are blocked from all sides, for all the lights freeze within her and there is no vent in her, through which any light can appear.
These three lines in the left are the three shifts of the night—three times four hours.
The first shift, trails, is Midat ha Din [quality of judgment] of the unmitigated Malchut—the Hitkalelut of the right line in it.
The second shift is the four middle hours of the night. Those are considered ways—the mitigated Malchut. But the first two hours until midnight are small ways, which are illumination of the left line with respect to itself, before it is included with a middle line, and the point of midnight is the coming of the middle line and its inclusion in the left. At that time it receives what is discerned as great lights. This discernment continues the whole night and is ascribed primarily to the third shift, but its manifestation time is midnight.
In the first shift, the beginning of the night, it is called “ways.” Afterwards, in the beginning of the second shift, the Nukva is tied in the dark, which is the left line of Ima and domination. At that time, it is considered being in fine ways, since this discernment precedes the appearance of the middle line. Hence, not only do the openings of the Hassadim not shine, but even the openings of Hochma do not shine in her, since Hochma cannot shine without clothing of Hassadim. This lasts two hours, until the point of midnight.
Then, in those two hours, many spirits of the righteous blossom in the air and crave to know, to receive Hochma and to permeate the Nukva. And they enter among those birds and take testimony there; they receive Mochin of Eden, Hochma, and roam and see what they see. Seeing means Mochin de Hochma.
Even though at that time, the vents in the Nukva are blocked from all sides so no light is seen from her. Yet, the time of reception of light of Hochma is precisely then. This is why The Zohar accurately says that she is filled with light, but the vents are blocked. Afterwards, when the middle line awakens in her and opens the vents, they will receive the illumination of Hochma from her, which was blocked within her at that time. This is so because afterwards she diminishes from GAR to VAK because of the middle line and her illumination is far lower than during that time, when she was still not included in the middle line. It is written that they crave to permeate the Nukva precisely when she is discerned as small ways and blocked vents, since only then is the Hochma in her complete.
It is written that they come along with the discernment of birds in the Nukva and receive Mochin of Eden, of Hochma. Birds refer to the discernment of Nefesh de Nukva, Divinity from the side of the throne, which is a Neshama [soul], is called “eagle.” And from the side of the boy, which is Ruach [spirit], she is called “dove”; and from the side of the wheel, which is Nefesh, she is a “bird.” But even at that time, the spirits of the righteous cannot receive from her, from the discernment of Ruach in the Nukva, but only from the discernment of Nefesh in her.
135) The blocking of the vents continues until that darkness—the left line of Ima that the Nukva was tied to—awakens and produces one flame. This means that the darkness in the Nukva awakened ZA to rise for MAN to Ima, relating to the Masach de Hirik in it, which is considered a flame. And there the middle line comes out on it, which strikes with all the strong hammers, the Klipot, and opens the blocked vents and breaks the rocks.
There are two actions here: The first extends from the actual flame, the Masach de Hirik that diminishes the ten Sefirot of the left line from GAR to VAK. He says about her, “and breaks rocks,” since the Sefirot of the left line are akin to hard rocks due to the multitude of judgments in them. And the Masach breaks them. And the GAR in them is the distance from the left line, leaving in it only the ZAT in them. The second extends from the level of Hassadim that emerges on that Masach, which opens the vents, since now the Hochma clothes these Hassadim and shines in utter perfection. This is considered that all the gates that were blocked have now been opened to shine abundantly. And these two actions unfold in the middle of the second shift, which is the midnight point.
This flame, which is the Masach de Hirik, rises and falls. It rises to Ima through ZA and then descends from there to ZA himself. And he strikes and imparts to the world, and through her, through a Zivug de Hakaa, he educes the level of Hassadim in Nukva, too, which is called “world,” and voices awaken above and below. Voices refer to the level of Hassadim that emerge on the Masach de Hirik—above in Bina and below in Nukva.
136) At that time, an announcer rises and connects to the Avir [air] and calls out. That air comes out of the pillar of cloud of the internal altar, and when it leaves, it spreads through the four winds of the world. Thousands are in it on the left side; tens of thousands are in it on the right side, and then the announcer proclaims its existence, and reads aloud and calls. At that time, many are those who correct singing and do work. And there are two open vents in her—one to the south, for illumination of Hassadim, and one to the north, for illumination of Hochma.
Illumination of Hochma before its completion is called “announcer,” since after it is complete with clothing of Hassadim in a daytime Zivug, she is called “speech,” which reveals the illumination of Hochma in the Mochin. But at night, she is called “announcer” because she is still not completed to be named “speech,” since the words of the wise are spoken in quiet, and the announcer is heard by raising a loud voice, which points to the Dinim [judgments] that are mingled in it. However, both announcer and speech are heard only when clothed in Hassadim, called “voice.”
It is written that the illumination of Hochma dresses in Hassadim, air, at midnight, and then it is possible to call out and declare. But before it is clothed in Hassadim, it has no voice and it cannot announce.
There are two kinds of Hassadim: one that extends from the upper AVI, which are GAR, even though they are covered from Hochma. These are called “pure air.” The other extends from YESHSUT. These lack GAR and are therefore simply called “air.” These are not pure because of the absence of Hochma is felt in them.
Therefore, as long as there is no illumination of Hochma in ZON, the Hassadim are considered extending from the discernment of YESHSUT, lacking GAR. However, after there is illumination of Hochma in ZON, the Hassadim are considered to be extending GAR and pure air from the upper AVI.
This air is the light of Hassadim that the announcer is clothed in. The upper Ima is called the “inner altar.” The light of Hassadim is called the “pillar of cloud.” The Hassadim that the announcer—illumination of Hochma—clothed in, extend from upper Aba and Ima, called the “inner altar,” which are pure air. This is so because here there is already illumination of Hochma, as in the announcer itself, for at that time the Hassadim extend in the form of pure air from AVI, which spread in HB TM in the Nukva, called the “four winds of the world.”
And the ten Sefirot de YESHSUT, from which the left line emerges in illumination of Hochma after the Yod departs their Avir [air] and leaves Ohr [light], is considered thousands. And the ten Sefirot of upper AVI, from which the Hassadim extend, are considered tens of thousands. From this discernment, it extends from YESHSUT, whose ten Sefirot are one thousand. And it extends from the upper AVI, from the discernment of the Hassadim in the right, whose ten Sefirot are ten thousand. Then, after the announcer is included in Hassadim, called “voice,” it can call aloud and declare.
137) Once the Nukva is built for her own needs from the three lines that are included in the left, she rises to ZA for a Zivug to receive for others. And this house, the Nukva, rises and permits connection between the two sides—right and left—of ZA. And they sing songs and praises rise from the lower ones who raise MAN for the Zivug of ZON. At that time, ZA enters whispering, since the Nukva has no voice, as she is Hassadim. And although she has already received Hassadim for her own construction, she is still considered left without right—to bestow upon others, which is the Zivug in whisper and at night, without light. This is so because then ZA bestows light of Hassadim upon her, which is “voice.” And the house, which is Nukva, is inflamed in the six lights of Hassadim, HGT NHY. These shine splendor to all sides, which are Hassadim mingled with Hochma. And rivers of perfume, which is illumination of Hochma, emerge from her, mingled with Hassadim, for all the animals to drink, as it is written, “will water all you beasts of the field.” And they sing until the morning comes. And when the light of day rises, the stars and fortunes and the heaven and their host all praise and sing, as it is written, “When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy.”
This is so because the illumination of the Zivug from the night, although there is Hassadim in it, the dominion is still for the illumination of Hochma. This is why at that time, only the animals of the field receive, since they extend from the Achoraim of the Nukva, and this is why they sing. But those that extend from the Panim [face] of Nukva receive from her only in the morning. At that time, all the degrees in BYA sing, both those that extend from the Panim, and those that extend from the Achoraim, as it is written, “and all the sons of God shouted for joy,” because they all sing.
138) “Unless the Lord builds the house.” “Unless the Lord…” is the Upper King, ZA, who always builds, as in a never ending Zivug. “…the house” is the Nukva, and He corrects it. He bestows upon her from the never ending Zivug, when the intentions of the work properly rise from below. When the lower ones raise MAN for this Zivug, ZON rise to AVI, and like them, are in a never ending Zivug.
139) When the night is dark and armed discernments of the Sitra Achra wander in the world and the vents are blocked, HaVaYaH, the middle line, raises MAN from the Masach de Hirik and extends a middle line, and the vents open. By that, it is kept from all sides, so no uncircumcised and impure will approach the holy, as it is written, “henceforth there shall no more come into thee the uncircumcised and the unclean,” for the Creator will remove them from the world.
There are two actions in the middle line, until it unites the two lines—right and left—with one another: 1) when it extends the level of Hassadim on the Masach; 2) when it diminishes the GAR of the left line, when the left does not surrender until it comes and connects with the right only by these two actions.
“Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it.” This is the first action because HaVaYaH is ZA. Had he not extended plentiful Hassadim through the middle line to build the Nukva, called “house,” the left line would not have surrendered to unite with the right, and “they labor in vain who build it.”
“Unless the Lord guards the city” refers to the second action, which is the diminution of GAR of the left line. By diminishing the GAR of the left line, they remove the grip of the Sitra Achra from the left line in the Nukva, and the city, Nukva, is kept from the uncircumcised and the unclean by ZA raising the Masach de Hirik and diminishing the GAR of the left line. This is so because then they have nothing on which to nourish from her left and they part her, as it is written, “Unless the Lord guards the city, the watchman keeps awake in vain.”
140) Who is uncircumcised and who is unclean? The uncircumcised and unclean are all one. It is what Adam and his woman were tempted by and followed and caused death to the whole world—the primordial serpent. This is what defiles that house, the Nukva, until such time as the Creator removes him from the world, which is Nukva. For this reason, “Unless the Lord guards the city, the watchman keeps awake in vain.”
141) “And Jacob journeyed to Succoth.” He went to Bina, meaning raised MAN from Masach de Hirik, to receive the share of the faith, the Nukva. “So Esau returned that day on his way unto Seir, and Jacob journeyed to Succoth.” This was because each separated to his own side: Esau to the side of Seir, which is a strange woman, a foreign god, and Jacob went to Succoth, which is the upper faith, Bina, meaning he raised MAN from Masach de Hirik to Bina in order to extend the middle line from there so as to build the Nukva.
142) “…and built him a house,” the house of Jacob, the Nukva. He corrected the evening prayer, the Nukva, as it should be, meaning extended for her Hassadim from upper AVI. “…and made booths for his cattle,” different Succoth [tabernacles], so as to keep them.
The two actions are clarified in the verse.
The abundance of Hassadim is clarified in the verse “…and built him a house,” whose correction and construction are done by extending Hassadim, as it is written, “Unless the Lord builds the house.”
The diminution of GAR from the left line in order to keep it from the uncircumcised and the unclean, as it is written, “…and made booths for his cattle.” This is so because a Succah [tabernacle] comes from the word Masach [screen], that he extended the Masach de Hirik to diminish the GAR of the left line, as it is written, “Unless the Lord guards the city,” meaning other Succoth, to guard them from the uncircumcised and unclean.
143) And Jacob came whole. He was complete with everything—with Hochma and with Hassadim. And it is written, “In Salem [in Hebrew it is pronounced Shallem, which means “whole”] also is set His tabernacle,” and it is all one secret—obtainment of wholeness through the middle line, both for ZA, called “Jacob,” and for his Succah, which is the Nukva. This is so because then, when he is whole, faith, the Nukva, connects with him. And when he crowns in his worthy place, in the middle line, the Succah crowns with him, as well, and it is said about her, as well, “In Salem also is set His tabernacle.” This was so because he was complete with his fathers, complete with his children, and this is considered being whole, when he is complete above and complete below, complete in heaven, and complete on earth. Complete above is ZA, as it includes the patriarchs, which is Tifferet Israel [the glory of Israel], which includes Abraham and Isaac, Hesed and Gevura. Complete below, in the Nukva, in his holy sons, which are the twelve tribes, being the chariot of the Nukva. It turns out that he is complete in heaven, which is ZA. This is why it is said about him, “And Jacob came whole.” And complete on earth is the Nukva, when it is said about her, “In Salem also is set His tabernacle.”
144) “And Dinah…went out.” Many degrees and discernments separate above, some for Kedusha and some for the Sitra Achra, for one opposite the other has God made them. And they all differ from one another: some are for Hesed and some are for Dinim [judgments]. Animals are different from one another: some want to govern others and take prey; each is its own kind.
Thou Shall Not Plow With an Ox and an Ass
145) Many degrees are separated from the side of the spirit of impurity, and all lurk to attack the Kedusha, one opposite the other, as it is written, “Thou shall not plow with an ox and an ass together,” since when they join, they ruin the world.
146) The only desire of the degrees of impurity is to attack the holy degrees. They all lurked and attacked Jacob, who was holy, as it is written, “and Jacob came whole.” First, the serpent bit him, as it is written, “he touched the hollow of his thigh.” It is said about Esau’s minister that he was riding a serpent. Now the Hamor [ass] bit him, Shechem the son of Hamor, which is the Klipa of the right.
147) When the serpent bit him, he himself stood up to the serpent. Now that the ass bit him, Shimon and Levi, who came from the side of the harsh Din [judgment], stood up to the ass and governed him from all sides, and it surrendered before them, as it is written, “they slew Hamor and Shechem his son with the edge of the sword.” Shimon, whose sign was the ox, Gevura, and the left of Kedusha, came up on Hamor, who is the Klipa of the right, and attacked him, so the Klipot of ox and ass will not conjoin. It turns out that Shimon is his opposite, not Jacob.
148) And they all came to attack Jacob, and he was saved from them. Afterwards, he controlled them. Subsequently, the ox, which is Joseph, came and was completed with asses, which are the Egyptians he ruled over, who were all from the side of the Klipa of Hamor. Joseph is ox and Egyptians are asses, as it is written, “whose flesh is as the flesh of asses.”
149) This is why afterwards, the children of Jacob fell among those asses, the Egyptians, since an ox—Joseph—had conjoined with them and they had an ox and an ass conjoined within them. And they bit the bone and the flesh of Israel, like the nature of asses, which bite and break bones, until Levi awakened, as before, and scattered these asses by separating the ox from the ass, to surrender them. And he broke their force from the world and ejected the ox from there, as it is written, “And Moses took the bones of Joseph with him.” Moses is Levi, and Joseph is the ox that conjoined with them.
150) Previously, when Shimon came up on the ass to fight it, he cast blood on them, when they were circumcised, and subsequently, “and slew all the males.” The Creator acted similarly through a Levi—Moses—with those asses—the Egyptians. First, He brought upon them the stroke of blood, and then “the Lord slew all the firstborn in the land of Egypt.” Here, with this ass, the father of Shechem, it is written, “all their wealth, and all their little ones” and all their beasts, for it is said, “They took their flocks and their herds and their asses, and that which was in the city and that which was in the field.”
And there, in those asses, which are the Egyptians, it is written, “jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and raiment,” which correspond to the “all their wealth” from here. It is written, “And a mixed multitude went up with them, as well,” which correspond to, “and all their little ones,” from here, and “flocks, and herds” correspond to, “their flocks and their herds,” from here.
151) And Shimon and Levi: Shimon rose against that ass, Shechem’s father, who was not connected with an ox. And Levi came up against all the asses, even against the asses that were connected to an ox, like the Egyptians.
This is so because Shimon is Gevura and ox, and hence opposite the ass of the Klipa of the right, and could surrender it. But he could not subdue the Klipa of the ass in Egypt, since they were connected to an ox and received strength from Joseph, who was king over them. For this reason, only Levi, Moses who came from the tribe of levy, which is considered Tifferet—made of right and left together—had the strength to subdue those asses in Egypt, and not Shimon, who had only left in him.
They all wanted to need Jacob and corrected themselves to bite him, and he rose against them with his sons and surrendered him.
152) Now, in the last exile, when Esau bites him and his sons, who will rise against him? Jacob and Joseph will stand against him—Jacob from the right side and Joseph from the left side, as it is written, “And the house of Jacob shall be a fire, and the house of Joseph a flame, and the house of Esau for stubble.”
153) “And they journeyed; and a terror of God…” They all gathered to fight, and when they girded their arms, they shivered and left them. And this is why they did not chase the children of Jacob.
154) “Put away the strange gods,” what they took from Shechem, jewels of silver and gold that their strange gods engraved on them. They were building other gods from silver and gold, and not Jewels with idols carved on them. And Jacob hid them there so they will not enjoy the idol worship, for man is forever prohibited to enjoy it.
155) “Then he took the crown of their king from his head.” The children of Amon put their abomination as their king. And it is written, “the crown of their king.” What is the reason that “it was set on David’s head”? And what is the reason for referring to it as abomination, since it refers to the rest of the idol worshipping nations as “gods of the nations,” “other gods,” “strange god,” “another god,” but here with the idol worship of their king it says “abomination.”
156) And he replied, “all the gods of the peoples are idol worshippers”; this is what the Creator calls them, as it is written, “and ye have seen their detestable things, and their idols,” and not necessarily “kings.” When the text says, “Then he took the crown of their king,” which is the idol worship—their king—and asked, “How was David crowned in her? It is certain that she was idol worshipping. However, while Ittai the Gittite was an idol worshipper before he converted, he broke from the crown, which is the idol worship—their king—the shape that was engraved on them and cancelled it. By that, he made her permitted, so it would be permitted to enjoy her. This is why David put her on his head.
An idol worshipper has the strength to revoke his own idol worship, and then it is permitted for Israel to enjoy. However, if he flaws and disqualifies the idol worship he had done before, after he had converted, he does not permit it for enjoyment, since then he is considered Israel. for this reason, The Zohar says that Ittai the Gittite cancelled her before he converted, and was no longer considered idol worshipper. This is why it was permitted for David to put it on his head.
The abomination of the children of Amon was a serpent, carved in a deep engraving on that crown; this is why it was called “Abomination,” meaning filth.
157) “Put away the strange gods…” these are other women, who were taken captive, and who brought all their ornaments with them. It is written about that, “And they gave unto Jacob all the foreign gods,” which are the women and all their ornaments, and all the gods of gold and silver, “and Jacob hid them,” meaning the gold and the silver, so they will not enjoy any idol worship.
158) Jacob was a whole man in every way, and he cleaved unto the Creator. It is written, “let us arise, and go up to Beth-el.” It immediately writes, “And they gave unto Jacob.” This means that one should praise the Creator and thank Him for the miracles and the goodness He has done with him, as it is written, “and was with me in the way which I went.”
159) First, it writes “let us arise, and go up to Beth-el,” in plural tense, including his sons with him. Afterwards, it writes, “and I will make there an altar,” in singular tense, and does not say, “we.” This excludes them from this rule because it only applied to him. Jacob certainly corrected the evening prayer, which is the correction of the Nukva. And he made the altar, which is the correction of the Nukva, and it was for him to do, not for his sons. And because he suffered all those troubles since the day he had escaped his brother, as it is written, “and was with me in the way which I went,” they came to the world later, after he was already rid of these troubles. This is why he did not bring them with him to the correction of the altar, but said, “I will make there an altar.”
160) This implies that one who had a miracle should give thanks. One who eats bread on the table should bless, not one who did not eat a thing. This is why Jacob said, “I will make there an altar,” and did not say, “we.”
And He Built There an Altar
161) “And he built there an altar,” meaning he corrected the degree. “…an altar for the Lord” means correction of the lower degree, which is Nukva, and connecting it with the upper degree, which is ZA. Hence, “And he built there an altar” is the lower degree, the Nukva, “…for the Lord” is the upper degree, ZA. “…and called the place El-beth-el”: The name he gave to Nukva is as the name of the Upper One, Bina, since when the Nukva illuminated from ZA, the daughter, which is the Nukva, became as her mother, Bina. This is why Jacob called her by the name, El [God], which is the name of Ima.
162) “…because there God was revealed unto him,” meaning angels. He said, “revealed,” in plural tense, not in singular tense [in Hebrew they are spelled differently], since there are always seventy angels next to Divinity, and seventy thrones around Divinity. Hence, where there is disclosure of angels, there is the revelation of Divinity. This is why it is written, “because there God was revealed unto him,” in this revealed place, in the Nukva. It is written, “And, behold, the Lord stood beside him,” on the ladder, which is Nukva. Previously, it said, “the angels of God ascending and descending on it.” Thus, the revelation of the angels came along with the revelation of Divinity. This is why Jacob called the altar there, “El-beth-el,” [House of God] after the revelation of Divinity, and he tied it to the disclosure of the angels.
And God Went Up from Him
163) “And god went up from him,” together with the patriarchs. Jacob is a holy chariot for the Lord, ZA, which stands to shine for the moon, the Nukva. He alone is the chariot because he contains all the patriarchs, which are Hesed and Gevura, for Tifferet includes Hesed and Gevura.
164) “For what great…” indeed, how favored are Israel before the Creator, for you have not a nation or a tongue among all the idol worshipping nations in the world that has gods that will answer their prayers as the Creator is destined to answer the prayers and pleas of Israel any time they need the prayer answered. This is so because they pray only for their degree, which is Divinity. That is, each time they pray, it is for the correction of Divinity.
165) Jacob, the Creator named him “Israel,” meaning Divinity, as it is written, “He called unto Moses.” It writes, Vayikra [called] with a small Aleph, which is Divinity.
166) The name, “Israel,” was properly completed and then he rose in his degree and was completed in that name. For this reason, “and He called his name Israel.”
Jacob – Israel
167) Jacob is the senior patriarch and contains all sides, right and left. This is why “He called his name Israel,” as it is written, “thy name shall not be called any more Jacob, but Israel shall be thy name.” It is also written, “and He called his name Israel.” Why did the Creator repeat Himself and called him “Jacob” many times? And everyone calls him “Jacob,” as before. And what does “thy name shall not be called any more Jacob”?
168) “…will go forth as a mighty man, …like a man of war.” Why, “as a mighty,” “as a man”? It should have said “mighty” and “man.”
169) HaVaYaH [the Lord] is Rachamim [mercy] everywhere. HaVaYaH is the name of the Creator, as it is written, “I am the Lord, that is My name.” Sometimes His name is Elokim [God], which is Din [judgment]. However, when righteous multiply in the world, His name is HaVaYaH, Rachamim, and when the wicked multiply in the world, His name is Elokim. Thus, when Jacob was not among enemies and was not abroad, his name was “Israel.” And when he was among enemies or abroad, his name was “Jacob.”
170) But it is written, “Now Jacob lived in the land where his father had sojourned, in the land of Canaan,” that is, he was not abroad. But still, the name “Jacob” is used.
171) Just as the Creator is sometimes called HaVaYaH and sometimes called Elokim, depending on the degree, He is sometimes called “Israel” and sometimes called “Jacob.” When he has a degree of GAR and Rosh [head], he is called “Israel,” and when he is VAK, without a Rosh, he is called “Jacob.” And the reason why it writes, “thy name shall not be called any more Jacob,” is so he will not remain with the name “Jacob” but have two names, “Jacob” and “Israel,” depending on the degree.
Every Beginning Is Hard
172) It is written, “Neither shall thy name any more be called Abram, but thy name shall be Abraham”; this is why he remained with this name. But with Jacob, it does not say “was” [a word that appears only in the Hebrew Bible text], but “Israel shall be thy name”; hence, at times he is called “Jacob,” and at times, “Israel.” And when his sons were crowned with priests and Levis and rose in the upper degrees, he was always crowned by the name, “Israel.”
173) When Rachel (who was meant to be corrected in twelve tribes) died, she took the house, Divinity, so that Divinity will be properly crowned, so she would obtain Mochin de GAR and the mother of the sons will be glad. In other words, Rachel died so that the lower Divinity—Rachel—and the higher Divinity—Leah—will become one Partzuf. At that time, the lower Divinity obtains GAR, and the higher Divinity, which is the mother of the sons, was glad with the correction of the twelve tribes. And the reason why Leah did not die, and that Divinity began to take the house and become corrected with Benjamin, is that she is considered the Yesod [foundation] of the twelve tribes; hence, she is the first to correct Divinity. This is why Benjamin is always in the west, in banners, since Yesod is considered west.
174) With Benjamin, Divinity begins to correct in twelve tribes, and with him, the Kingdom of heaven begins to become known in the land. This is so because the first king in Israel, Saul, was of his sons. This is the meaning of “every beginning” that is about to be known, comes with questions, and hence contains a Din of death. Afterwards, she settles and persists.
175) When Divinity wanted to be corrected and to take the house in the correction of the twelve tribes, the Din was made in Rachel, for she died. Afterwards she was corrected to settle. Similarly, when Malchut wanted to become known in the land, she began with Din and did not settle in her proper place until the Din awakened in Saul according to his actions, and he was killed in the mountains of the Gilboa. Afterwards, Malchut settled in David and was corrected.
176) Every beginning is hard, then comes relief. In the beginning of the year, the beginning is hard, since the whole world is judged, each according to his deeds. Afterwards there is relief, forgiveness, and repentance on the day of atonement and Succoth. This is so because the beginning is in the left, hence its Dinim are harsh, and then the right awakens, as it is written, “his left hand be under my head.” Afterwards, “and his right hand embrace me”; hence the relief.”
177) It is to the contrary in the nations of the world. In the future, the Creator will first awaken peacefully over the other nations, the idol worshippers, and afterwards will prevail over them with harsh judgment, as it is written, “The Lord will go forth as a mighty man.” First HaVaYaH, which is Rachamim, and then as a mighty man, though not like a real mighty man. And afterwards, “like a man of war,” but not like a real man of war. After that, the Gevura appears over them to obliterate them, as it is written, “He will cry, yea, He will shout aloud, He will prove Himself mighty against His enemies.” And it is written, “Then shall the Lord go forth and fight,” and it is written, “Who is this that comes from Edom”?
175) “The Lord is good, a stronghold.” Happy is the man who strengthens in the Creator, since the stronghold of the Creator is a stronghold. “The Lord is good,” as it is written, “The Lord is good to all.” The stronghold is a stronghold that has salvations, as it is written, “He is a stronghold of salvation to His anointed.” “In the day of adversity,” a day of trouble, when the other nations pester Israel.
If Thou Faint in the Day of Adversity
179) “If thou faint in the day of adversity, thy strength is small indeed.” “If thou faint” means one whose hands faint by the Creator, so as to not grow stronger in Him. And how does one grow stronger in the Creator? By growing strong in the Torah, for one who grows stronger in the Torah, grows stronger in the tree of life, as though he gives strength to the assembly of Israel, which is Divinity, to grow stronger.
180) If he is idle in the Torah, it is written, “If thou faint…” if he is weak in the Torah, “in the day of adversity, thy strength is small indeed,” meaning that on the day when adversity comes, he will seemingly push Divinity, which is the force of the world. “…thy strength,” [in Hebrew] is an acronym for Koah [Strength] and Koh5 [Thus]. Koh is the name of Divinity, and “small is thy strength” means that he restrains the force of Divinity, called Koh.
181) When a person is idle in the Torah and goes by an improper way, several enemies may come upon him in the day of adversity. Moreover, even man’s soul, which is his strength and authority, will become his enemy and turn against him, as it is written, “small is thy strength.” This is because she has become his enemy and foe. “…small is thy strength” relates to the soul, which is man’s strength.
182) When a man walks by the path of Torah, and all his ways are proper and correct, several advocates stand by him, to speak favorably of him. It is written, “If there be for him an angel, an intercessor…” but is not everything revealed before the Creator? Does He need an angel to tell Him good or bad?
183) Of course He needs an angel, even though He knows everything. This is so in order to evoke mercy, since when man has several advocates to mention his merits before the Creator, and he has none to speak unfavorably of him, “then He is gracious unto him, and says: ‘Deliver him from going down to the pit, I have found a ransom.’”
184) It is written, “If there be for him an angel…” It would be good if it did not write more. But it writes, “an intercessor, one among a thousand.” Thus, we need to know who he is. And he says, “this is the angel that is appointed to being at a man’s left side. It is written, “A thousand may fall at Thy side.” This is the left side. Afterwards, it writes, “and ten thousand at Thy right hand,” meaning that the previously written “Thy side” was the left side.
185) But one out of a thousand is the evil inclination, which is one of those 1,000 damagers, which stand at the left, because he rises up and takes permission, and subsequently descends and puts to death. Hence, if a man walks on the path of truth, that evil inclination becomes his slave, as it is written, “Better is he that is a lowly one who has a servant.” At that time, he rises and becomes an advocate and speaks before the Creator in favor of the man. And then the Creator says, “Deliver him from going down to the pit.”
186) Yet, the evil inclination does not return empty handed, since it is given another person to control, instead, and to take his soul from him. Since that person’s sins have been put forward and he was caught for them, he becomes the ransom for the person who was saved, as it is written, “I have found ransom to redeem him.”
187) “I have found ransom.” The Creator says to the angel, “that advocacy, which you said about that person, will be a ransom for him to redeem him, so he will not go down to hell and die.” For this reason, one should walk in the path of truth, so his prosecutor will become his advocate.
188) Such as that are Israel on the day of atonement. They give a scapegoat to the evil inclination, which is Sam’el, and occupy themselves with it until it becomes their slave and rises and testifies to the Creator and becomes their advocate. It is about this evil inclination that Solomon said, “If thine enemy be hungry, give him bread to eat.”
189) For this reason, in the day of adversity, when one is idle in the Torah, he seemingly pushes the Creator toward the evil inclination, which becomes man’s slanderer, to hear his slander. Thus, this is a day of adversity. And then it is said, “thy strength is small indeed,” which is an acronym for Tzar [narrow], Koah [strength], and Koh [Yod–Hey]. It restrains the strength of Divinity, called Koh, since the evil inclination draws near the Creator in order to slander, and the strength of Divinity weakens because of the slandering.
190) “The Lord is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble.” What is “a day of trouble”? It is Jacob, when Esau came to slander against him. “…and He knows them that take refuge in Him,” when the trouble of the Din of Rachel’s death came upon him.
191) The slanderer is not over man, except in a time of danger. Because Jacob was late to keep the vow that he took before the Creator, the Din prevailed over Jacob through the slanderer, who demanded him sentenced at the time when Rachel was in danger. He said before the Creator, “But Jacob made a vow and did not pay. He is greater than all in wealth, in sons, and in all that is needed, but he did not complete the vow he had taken before You, and You did not receive a punishment from him. Immediately, “and Rachel travailed, and she had hard labor,” since the Din above, with the angel of death, was harsh upon him.
192) “If thou hast not wherewith to pay, why should he take away thy bed from under thee?” This is why Rachel died, and the judgment was passed by the angel of death.
193) When Esau came, Jacob “put the handmaids and their children foremost,” since he feared for Rachel, so that that wicked would not see her beauty and desire her.
194) It is also written, “Then the handmaids came near, they and their children.” The women were before the men. But what does it say about Rachel? “…and afterwards Joseph came near and Rachel,” that is, Joseph went before his mother, covering and hiding her. This is why it is written, “Joseph son of Porat,” for he augmented his body and covered his mother. “…over the eye”—the eye of that wicked, so he would not gaze upon her.
195) Here Rachel was punished by the evil inclination, who slandered at the time of danger, and Jacob was punished for not keeping his vow. And this was harder for Jacob than all the troubles he had endured. And how do we know that Rachel’s death was because of Jacob? Because it is written, “Rachel died unto me,” for I was late keeping my vow.
196) “…the curse that is causeless shall not come.” It is explained that it is “not” with a Vav [which means “for him”]. This indicates that if it is a curse of a righteous, even if he did not at all intend to curse, once the curse comes of his mouth, the evil inclination receives it and slanders with it at a time of danger.
197) Jacob said, “With whomsoever thou finds thy gods, he shall not live.” And even though he did not know that Rachel stole them, Satan received that thing which is always among men, and in the time of danger, slandered against him. This is why we learn that one should never open one’s mouth to the devil, for he takes that word and slanders with it above and below. It is even more so if the word comes from the mouth of a sage or a righteous. And Rachel was punished for those two: 1) because he was late keeping his vow; and 2) because of the curse he had uttered.
As Her Soul Departed
198) “And it came to pass, as her soul was in departing—for she died.” Why does it say, “for she died”? It indicates that the soul did not return to the body anymore, and Rachel’s death is the death of the body. This is because the departure of the soul still does not indicate the death of the body, as there are people whose soul departed and then returned to its place. But her soul departed and did not return to its place, and Rachel died.
199) “…she called his name Ben-oni,” after the harsh judgment to which she was sentenced. And Jacob tied him again to the right, the Hassadim, since the Nukva, West, must be tied to with the right. And even though he is Ben-oni [son of my strength] of the Nukva, which is the side of the harsh Din in her, it is still Ben-Yamin [Benjamin, but also “son of the right side, in Hebrew], for the Nukva was tied with the right. This is why he called him Benjamin, Ben-Yamin [son of right], for he tied Rachel with the right, which is Hassadim.
200) She “was buried on the way,” in a disclosed location. But the death and burial place of Leah was not made known.
And Jacob Set Up a Pillar
201) “And Jacob set up a pillar upon her grave… unto this day.” “…unto this day” because to this day, her burial has not been covered, since the Creator will revive the dead.
202) “…unto this day,” the day when Divinity will bring Israel back from exile in Rachel’s burial place, as it is written, “And there is hope for thy future.” This is the vow that the Creator swore to Divinity. And when Israel return from the exile, they are destined to stand at Rachel’s burial place and weep there as did she over the exile of Israel. It is written about that, “They shall come with weeping, and with supplications will I lead them.” And it is written, “for thy work shall be rewarded.” At that time, Rachel, which is on the way, will rejoice with Israel and with Divinity.
And Reuben Went – Now the Sons of Jacob Were Twelve
203) “And it came to pass, while Israel dwelt in that land.” This refers to Divinity, called “land,” because Leah and Rachel died and Divinity received the house.
204) Would you even consider that Reuben went and laid with Bilhah? Rather, as long as Leah and Rachel were alive, Divinity was over them. But now that they have died, Divinity did not part the house and remained in Bilhah’s abode.
And even though Divinity should have received the house, to properly unite with Jacob after Rachel’s death, how is it said that Divinity was in Bilhah’s abode? If Jacob had not been in a Zivug of Dechar (male) and Nukva, Divinity would not have openly been in the house. This is why Divinity was in Bilhah’s place, since there was a Zivug of Dechar and Nukva there.
205) Reuben came, and when he saw that Bilhah had taken the place of his mother, he went and confused the bed, meaning he took Jacob’s bed from there. And because the spirit of Divinity was over her, it is written about him, “and lay with Bilhah,” meaning that he slept on that bed and was not afraid for the honor of Divinity. This is why the text speaks of him as if he laid with her. And because he did not sin, Reuben was not removed from the count of twelve tribes. This is why the text immediately calculates, saying, “Now the sons of Jacob were twelve. And because of that, it immediately writes, “Reuben, Jacob’s first-born,” for the text had made him head of all the tribes.
206) “For the ways of the Lord are right.” All the ways of the Creator are right, and His ways are true. And the people of the world do not know and do not notice what they stand on. Hence, “the righteous do walk in them,” since they know the ways of the Creator and engage in Torah, and anyone who engages in the Torah knows the ways of the Torah and walks in them, and does not stray right left.
207) “…but transgressors do stumble therein.” Those are the wicked ones, who do not engage in the Torah, do not observe the ways of the Creator, and do not know where the roads lead. And because they do not observe and do not engage in Torah, they fail in the ways of the Torah in this world and in the next world.
208) Any person who engages in Torah, when he passes away from this world, his soul rises in the ways and trails of the Torah. These ways and trails of the Torah are known, and those who know the ways of Torah in this world, walk in them in that world after they part with this world.
209) And if they do not engage in Torah in this world and do not know the ways and trails of the Torah, when they leave this world, they will not know these ways and trails and they will fail in them. Then they will walk in other ways, which are not the ways of Torah, and many judgments will awaken upon them and they will be punished in them.
210) And one who does engage in Torah, “…when thou lay down, it shall watch over thee; and when thou awaken, it shall talk with thee.” “When you lay” (in the grave), the Torah will keep you from the judgment of that world. “And when you awaken,” when the Creator awakens spirits and souls to revive the dead, then “it shall talk with thee,” meaning she will be an advocate for the body so that those bodies that engaged in Torah will rise properly. And these will be the first to rise to everlasting life, as it is written, “And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake… to everlasting life.” Those are to everlasting life, since they engaged in the everlasting life, which is the Torah.
211) All who engage in Torah, their body will persist and the Torah will protect it. This is because at that time, the Creator will awaken one spirit that comprises four winds, which are HB TM, and that spirit, made of four winds, will to all those who engage in Torah to revive them with that spirit so they will live forever.
212) It is written, “with the dead that Ezekiel revived.” “Come, O wind, from the four winds…” Why did they not persist? After all, they all died as in the beginning, and that spirit, which is made of the four winds, did not help them live forever? When the Creator revived the dead through Ezekiel, although that wind consisted of four winds, it did not descend to revive them for everlasting life to begin with, but to show that the Creator is destined to revive the dead in that way, and to revive them in the spirit that is included of the four winds in that manner. And although at that time, the bones returned to what they were, the Creator only wanted to show the whole world that He is destined to revive the dead, that then the Creator will revive them properly, in complete persistence in the world. And those who engage in Torah in this world, the Torah will stand for them at that time and will become an advocate before the Creator.
213) All the words in the Torah and all of that Torah, in which a person engages in this world, meaning the reason in it, always stands before the Creator and speaks to Him and raises her voice and does not grow silent. And at the time of the revival of the dead, she will speak and say according to the amount that that person engaged in her in this world. Hence, they will rise in complete persistence to everlasting life, as it is written, “For the ways of the Lord are right; the Righteous do walk in them, but transgressors do stumble therein.”
214) “…they lay with the women…” is it conceivable that the Lord’s priests would do this? The Torah explains their sin, that they were punished for slighting the sacrifice. This means that they were righteous who were being meticulously watched over. But here he says, “they lay with the women that did service,” meaning that they performed such a grave transgression.
215) But they would never sin like that, especially in that holy place, without Israel rising and killing them. But because they were detaining the women from entering the Temple, they protested for not being allowed to enter and pray before the offerings were made. But because they did not bring offerings, to take part of them, they were detaining them. And this is why the women asked to enter the Temple, but they detained them. This is why it is written, “they lay with the women,” having detained them from entering the Temple.
216) “…and lay with Bilhah” means that he detained her from laying with his father in a laying of Mitzva [good deed], and this is the confusion of the bed. It is considered that he did this deed against Divinity because wherever there is laying of Mitzva, Divinity is in that place. And one who causes detainment of a laying of Mitzva causes the parting of Divinity from the world, as it is written, “Because thou went up to thy father’s bed,” as it is written, “and lay with Bilhah,” and “Now the sons of Jacob were twelve,” since they were all counted and nothing of their merit was withdrawn.
217) What is the reason that Israel comes first and then Jacob, as it is written, “and Israel heard of it. Now the sons of Jacob were twelve”? He replies that when Reuben came and confused the bed, he said, “What is this? My father had twelve tribes to sustain in the world, not more, and now he wishes to have more sons? Are we flawed, that he wishes to have others in our place as in the beginning?”
He immediately confused the bed and that laying was detained. It is regarded as though he had disgraced Divinity, who was on that bed. This is why it writes, “and Israel heard,” because in that name, he rose within the twelve degrees that were covered, which are the twelve rivers of pure persimmon.
The name, “Israel,” is above Chazeh de ZA, where there are four Sefirot HB TM with three lines in each of them. These are twelve rivers of pure persimmon, and they were covered because Hassadim are covered from the Chazeh upwards. And Jacob wished to beget twelve more sons, referring to the twelve in the name, “Israel,” which are covered Hassadim. It turns out that by Reuben’s confusion of his father’s bed, he flawed the twelve in the name, “Israel,” but not at all in the twelve of Jacob, which were already present and complete. This is why it writes, “and Israel heard.” But the sons of Jacob were complete twelve.
218) “Now the sons of Jacob” are the twelve tribes by which Divinity was erected. They are the ones which the Torah counted in the beginning, before Reuben’s sin. They are all holy, all worthy of Divinity, to gaze upon the holiness of their Lord, because had Reuben done that deed, he would not have been counted among the tribes.
219) Still, Reuben was punished: his seniority was taken from him and given to Joseph, as it is written, “And the sons of Reuben the first-born of Israel,” since he was the first-born. May the name of God be blessed from the world unto the world, whose every deed is true, and whose ways are judgment, and all that He does is with sublime wisdom.
220) How much do people’s actions cause? All that man does is written and stands before the Creator. This is because when Jacob came to Leah, his heart and mind were with Rachel all through that night, for he thought she was Rachel. And from this lay, and from that first drop and from that desire was Leah impregnated. And it is explained that had it not been so—that Jacob did not know that she was Leah, but would indeed know that she was Leah while he was thinking of Rachel—Reuben would not have been counted among the tribes, since he would have been replaceable. However, it was by mistake. For this reason, he did not rise by a known name, but his name is only “Reuben,” which is an acronym for Reu [look], Ben [a son], without a name.
221) But still the act returns to its place. As the first desire acted in Rachel, that desire returned to her because his seniority returned to Joseph, Rachel’s first-born, the place where the desire was—Rachel. Thus, everything came to its place, since all the deeds of the Creator are true and just.
Who Is This Who Comes Up Out of the Wilderness
222) Pillars of smoke were billowing upwards. These pillars of smoke from the offerings—when there were offerings on the altar—would always rise like that smoke. There was no anger at the world and Israel were not exiled from their land.
223) “Who is this who comes up out of the wilderness like pillars of smoke?” When Israel were walking in the wilderness, Divinity was walking before them and they were walking behind her, as it is written, “And the Lord went before them.” It is written, “How thou went after Me in the wilderness.” Thus, Divinity walked before them and they followed her. This implies that they were receiving from her Achoraim.
224) And Divinity was walking and all the clouds of glory with her. And when Divinity moved, Israel moved, as it is written, “And whenever the cloud was taken up from over the Tent.” When she went up, the cloud rose up, and all the people in the world see, and ask, and say, “Who is this who comes up out of the wilderness like pillars of smoke?”
225) The cloud in which Divinity was seen was smoke, since the fire that Abraham and his son, Isaac, had lighted gripped her and did not let go of her. And when that fire gripped her, she emitted smoke.
When the left line of Bina shines without right, its illumination is like a consuming fire. And when Divinity is in the form of Achoraim, she rises and clothes the left line of Bina, and then she is lit up by this fire because Isaac is the left line of Bina. Abraham extended it, and before he was included in the right, he was as a consuming fire. Also, Divinity was lit up by this fire while she was in the form of Achoraim, and during the correction of Divinity, when she receives the complete Mochin of Panim be Panim (face-to-face)—when she imparts illumination of Hochma—she imparts with those Kelim [vessels] that are like a consuming fire. This is because she received from the left line of Bina while she was in Mochin de Achoraim.
This fire does not part from the Nukva even when she is in Mochin de Panim because through them, she gives illumination of Hochma because then she evokes the Kelim de Achoraim, which are like a consuming fire and emit smoke.
226) “…perfumed with myrrh and frankincense.” “Perfumed” means she is connected to the two other sides that are mitigated and included in one another, which are Abraham’s cloud—to the right—and Isaac’s cloud—to the left. “…with all powders of the merchant” is Jacob. This means that she was connected in the three lines: myrrh—the right line, Abraham; frankincense—the left line, Isaac; all the powders of the merchant—the middle line, which contains both, and is therefore called “merchant,” for it has myrrh and frankincense.
227) “…powders of the merchant” are the righteous Joseph. This is so because Joseph’s coffin, who is Yesod, went to her. And he is called “merchant” because he was gossiping on his brothers before his father.6
228) “Powder” connects to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph, which are as one and have one form, as it is written, “These are the generations of Jacob, Joseph.” This is why it is written, “all the powders of the merchant,” since the place from which the river comes out, meaning Yesod, which is Joseph, waters everyone, and everyone’s faces shine.
229) And when Israel were in the land and were bringing offerings, they were all properly near to the Creator. And when the offering was done and the smoke rose upright, they knew that the smoke of the altar lit the candle that was meant to be lit, and everyone’s faces shone and the candles were lit.
Candles are the Sefirot of the Nukva, the light of the fire.
230) Since the day the Temple was ruined, there is not a day without rage and fury, as it is written, “a God that hath indignation every day”; joy had been taken away above and below, Israel walk in exile, and they are under the authority of other gods. Then, the verse, “and there shall thou serve other gods” comes true.
231) But why has all that come to Israel? It is because “thou didst not serve the Lord thy God with joyfulness, and with gladness of heart, by reason of the abundance of all things.” what is “the abundance of all things”? Here it is abundance of all things and there it is “want of all things.”
Yesod is called “all,” as it is written, “all that is in the heaven and in the earth.” And when Israel were in the land, Yesod was shining for them and it was said, “abundance of all things.” But abroad, in exile, it was said, “in want of all things,” for Yesod is not shining there. This is why it is said, “therefore shall thou serve thine enemy whom the Lord shall send against thee, in hunger, and in thirst, and in nakedness, and in want of all things.”
232) Until the Creator awakens and redeems us from among the nations, as it is written, “then the Lord thy God will turn thy captivity.”
These Are the Generations of Esau
233) “These are the generations of Esau.” The sons of Esau were not counted in the life of Isaac, as were the sons of Jacob. However, what does it write about Esau? “And Isaac expired,” etc.. It is written, “These are the generations of Esau, who is Edom.” This is so because only Jacob and his sons are in Isaac’s lot and share. Because of that, Jacob and his sons—which are the part of the Creator—were counted, but with Esau, who is not on the side of faith, the writing calculated after Isaac died, and then his part was separated from the Kedusha unto another place.
234) After Isaac died and Esau parted to his side, it is written, “And Esau took his wives… away from his brother Jacob.” This was because he left the principal, as well as the profit for Jacob. He left him the enslavement of Egypt, which is the principal, as well as the profit from the enslavement of Egypt, which is the inheritance of the land, and sold him his share in the Cave of Machpelah, and departed from the land, from the faith, and from his share, as he departed from everything.
235) How good was Jacob’s share in everything, since Esau did not stay with him but parted him and went to his own lot and share, and Jacob stayed holding on to his father’s and forefathers’ lot. This is why it is written, “…and went into a land away from his brother Jacob,” since he did not want the share the lot and the fate of Jacob’s faith. Happy is the lot of Jacob, as it is written, “For the portion of the Lord is His people, Jacob the lot of His inheritance.”
These Are the Kings
236) When the Creator created the world, He divided the land into seven borders, corresponding to the seventy ministers appointed over the nations of the world, which are externality—HGT NHYM—where each consists of ten, thus seventy. And the Creator divided those appointees into seventy nations, each with its proper one, as it is written, “When the Most High gave to the nations their inheritance, when He separated the children of men, He set the borders of the peoples according to the number of the children of Israel.”
237) And of all the ministers and appointees that were given to all the nations, there is none so despicable in the eyes of the Creator as the one appointed over Esau. This is because his side is the side of impurity, and the side of impurity is despised by the Creator. And of the minister of Esau came from those small degrees behind the grindstone and from the emptiness in the red qualities, as it is written, “upon thy belly shall thou go” and “cursed art thou from among all cattle.”
Grindstone and vehicle are Netzah and Hod, called grinders, for they grind MAN for the righteous. Netzah is called “vehicle” and Hod is called “grindstone.” They are called by these names because there is harsh Din [judgment] in Hod, from which the Masach of the lock is made. For this reason, everything is grinded on it, and it is there from which the righteous raise MAN. Also, it is known that the Din does not act above its place, but only below its place. Hence, the degrees past the grindstone—Hod de ZA—are affected by the harsh Din in the grindstone and cannot receive Gadlut [adulthood]; hence, they are in Katnut [smallness]. It is also known that the degrees that extend from the left line, when it shines from above downwards, are devoid of any light because the Nukva is regarded as a frozen sea, and those two deficiencies are in Esau’s minister.
Esau’s minister comes from the small discernments that operate in the degrees past the grindstone, due to the harsh Din there. This is also why he is small. Moreover, he comes from the left line when it shines from above downwards, Hochma without Hassadim, at which time all the degrees that extend from there are empty.
And the writing says two things about him: 1) “behold, I make thee small among the nations,” and 2) “thou art greatly despised.” This is because he extends from the left line, and the left line extends from Bina, which is regarded as the color red. And since he is empty, it is considered despised. And he is also regarded as the primordial serpent, of which it was said, “upon thy belly shall thou go, and dust shall thou eat.” This is so because being from past the grindstone, his legs were cut off by the force of the harsh Din that is there, and he was cursed, “upon thy belly shall thou go.” And since it is from the left, it is empty and was cursed, “and dust shall thou eat all the days of thy life.” It is said about Esau, “though art greatly despised,” like the serpent who was cursed, “cursed art thou from among all cattle, and from among all beasts of the field.”
The text explains why the kings of Edom ruled before there was a king for the children of Israel. It is known that the small one is corrected first, and then the greater one. Accordingly, Jacob should have been corrected first, and then Esau, because it is written, “he called Esau his elder son,” and Jacob is the young one. But The Zohar explains that with respect to the roots, Esau is considered small and Jacob as greater than him. This is why it is written, “I make thee small among the nations.”
238) In the lower degrees from Chazeh de ZON down, where Hassadim appear in Hochma, there are degrees over degrees, and all are different from one another. All the degrees are both separated and connected to one another in a way that the Malchuts of all the degrees are separated from one another, and Malchut connects to Malchut, too. This is so because the order is that one comes in and one comes up, and they are united in one knot.
The light of Hassadim enters through the Masach de Hirik in the middle line, and then the light of Hochma in the left rises and shines from below upwards. Thus, all three lines are connected in one knot—of the middle line. Had it not been for the light of Hassadim in the right line, Hochma would not have shone on the left. And had it not been for the middle line, the right and left would not have clothed one another. Thus, all three are interconnected.
239) The knot of Masach de Hirik has a level—the level of the middle line. And there are three knots in that level, since the middle line contains all three lines within it. And each knot contains one crown, GAR, as it is written, “upon the crown wherewith his mother crowned him,” and in each crown is the force of one dominion of the Masach of the lock, which is Malchut of the first restriction, which serves in the GAR in each degree.
240) The governing force of the lock was appointed by the crown above, at the GAR of the degree, where its place is set. Also, it was appointed to descend to the VAK of the degree until the stars and signs were tied to it. Each governing force that exists within each of the three crowns has one star and one sign in it. And all the stars relate to the degrees above, and all the signs, to the degrees below. For this reason, each degree is crowned in its proper place.
Sign—a collection of stars connected to one another, with a common route to all of them.
Stars indicates that they are not connected to each other, and each turns to its own way. The connection of the Sefirot is that Hochma does not shine with Hassadim in the right, and Hochma does not receive the Hassadim in the right if not by the decision of the middle line. All three need each other and are connected to each other. Hence, the whole reason for the connection is the light of Hochma, which cannot shine without Hassadim. For this reason, this applies only in the VAK of each degree, where the key—Ateret Yesod—shines, and the Yod parts from the Avir and the light of Hochma appears there.
However, in the GAR of each degree, where the force of the lock governs, meaning Malchut of the first restriction, the Aleph does not depart its Avir and the Hassadim are covered and disappear from Hochma. Thus, there is no reason for the middle line to connect the Sefirot to one another, which is why they are considered separated. And for this reason, the Sefirot in the VAK of the degree, which are connected to one another, are called “fortunes,” since the stars in them are interconnected, and the Sefirot in the GAR of the degree are called “stars” for they are separated from one another like separate stars.
It is written, “for their faces and wings are separated above,” since they are connected below, in VAK, and separated above, in GAR. This does not mean that there is no Tikkun Kavim [correction of lines] in GAR, for there is nothing in VAK that is not received from GAR. However, this refers only to the dominion. This means that there is no dominion to the connecting force there, and it is seemingly absent there, which is why they are called “stars.”
The lock’s governing force is in the GAR of the degree, but its illumination spreads and descends in the VAK of the degree. This is why he says that the governing force of the lock is appointed in the GAR of the degree, which is its core. As for its illumination, it descends and shines below in the VAK of the degree, since the GAR, called “stars,” are included in it. VAK is called “fortunes,” but its presence is in the stars and its illumination is in the fortunes.
This means that signs and fortunes are not necessarily the governing force in the left. There are signs and fortunes even in the governing force on the right, which is entirely Hassadim. With respect to the star, there is no Hitkalelut [mingling] of Hochma in it, and with respect to fortune, it does have Hitkalelut of Hochma. Stars are ascribed to the GAR of the degree, and fortunes are related to the VAK of the degree. Hence, there are two types of GAR: 1) relating to the Hassadim received from the GAR of the degree, which is pure Avir [air], and 2) relating to the Hochma that is received from the VAK of the degree.
Thus, there are two kinds of crowns, and each degree is crowned according to the discernment properly assigned to it.
241) When the degrees are separated, meaning in GAR, there is an ending connection between them, that is, the domination of the lock stops the illumination of Hochma until it connects to its proper place, meaning until its illumination descends to VAK. And all the degrees of impurity, which are on the left side, divide into several ways—which are keys—and trails—which are locks. This pertains to the red Gevurot that extend from Bina, which is Edom [Edom also means “red” in Hebrew]. For this reason, the Gevurot below are regarded as thousands and tens of thousands.
Even though the left side extends from the place of VAK, where there is domination of the key, the illumination of the lock spreads there, as well. Hence, the impure side that extends from the left necessarily contains the dominion of the lock, as well, and thus receives its Katnut from there.
The domination of the lock in the place of GAR halts the illumination of Hochma. Its illumination spreads to VAK, as well, although that place is dominated by the key. From the key extend ways and from the lock extend trails. Thousands depend on the illumination of the key, which contains illumination of Hochma, since they are thousands in Hochma, and tens of thousands depend on the illumination of the lock, which uses GAR and covered Hassadim, since tens of thousands extend from GAR and from the discernment of Hassadim. Katnut extends to Esau by the force of the illumination of the lock, and receives the illumination of the left from above downwards by the force of the illumination of the key, from which it receives the emptiness and becomes greatly despised.
242) “And these are the kings that reigned in the land of Edom.” “…the land” means the side of Esau in the degree, as it is written, “Esau, who is Edom.” Also, all these kings come from the side of the spirit of impurity.
“…before any king reigned over the children of Israel.” This is so because those degrees that stand at the gatehouses below—the degrees of Esau—are the first to be completed. This is why Jacob said, “Let my lord… pass over before his servant,” since the degrees of Esau are the first to enter and be completed. It is so because first the lower degrees are corrected and then the high degrees. For this reason, “before any king reigned over the children of Israel,” for until now, it was not time for the kingdom of heaven to govern and to unite with the children of Israel. This is why he said, “Let my lord… pass over before his servant.”
243) After these degrees are completed, the kingdom of heaven will awaken to rule over the lower ones. And when she begins to govern, she will begin with the smallest of all tribes, which is Benjamin, which is King Saul, who comes from Benjamin. With Benjamin, the Malchut [kingdom] began to awaken. Afterwards, Malchut came to its place, to King David, and existed in him, so as to never part from him.
244) The Creator promised Israel that He would endow them with the next world in several places, because He did not wish to admit into His lot any other nation and tongue but Israel. For this reason, He gave them the true law, by which to merit knowing the ways of the Creator, so they will inherit the holy land. This is so because anyone who is rewarded with this holy land has a share in the next world, as it is written, “Thy people also shall be all righteous; they shall inherit the land for ever.”
245) There are three degrees: Jacob, then Israel, then Jeshurun. Jacob is the degree of VAK without a Rosh [head]. Israel is the degree of GAR, although they are one degree, ZA.
246) Why are Israel called “Jeshurun”? Israel and Jeshurun are all one. Jeshurun, the Yeshur [aligning] of people, since he takes a line from this side and a line from that side. And because these are two lines, he calls them Yeshurun, in plural tense. Israel is also a line, as it is the acronym of Yashar El [straight to God].
247) Israel is read with a left Shin [pronounced as Sin], which is Serara [authority] for taking Gadlut and strength from all. Jeshurun is named after those parts, which are the two sides, right and left, which are two lines, and it is all one.
Rows mean lines, and the name Jeshurun [in Hebrew, Yeshurun], which is in plural tense, indicates to rows. Hence, it necessarily contains the two upper lines—Hochma and Bina. And the name, “Israel,” which is an acronym for Yashar El, indicates a line, as well, as in, aligning of people. Also, this is in singular tense, which indicates the middle line, which is Daat—containing the two upper lines, which are HB.
Israel and Jeshurun are one, for both are GAR de ZA, from Chazeh de ZA upwards. Jeshurun is the two upper lines—right and left, Hochma and Bina de ZA. The name, “Israel” is from the word “line,” as well, as it is an acronym for Yashar El, middle line, Daat, VAK de Rosh of ZA. Israel is pronounced with a left Shin [Sin], which means authority, since it contains both. For this reason, it takes its greater part from the right line and its strength from the left line. Jeshurun are the two lines, Hochma and Bina of Rosh de ZA, and all three names are one, for all are in ZA.
248) All these names become one, which are three Partzufim: HBD, HGT, NHY de ZA, called Beria, Yetzira, Assiya de ZA. Jeshurun is HBD, Israel is HGT, and Jacob is TNHY. This is why it is written, “Jacob My servant,” since at times he is a servant, like a slave following his master’s orders and doing his will. This indicates that he has no Mochin, since he is Partzuf TNHY and considered Assiya de ZA. Also, “Israel, whom I have chosen,” means to be in it, in Mochin de GAR. All are in the Upper One, for all three degrees are considered Rosh. These degrees rise to one, which are the three Partzufim ZA, Jeshurun, Israel, and Jacob, which are HBD, HGT, NHY, and Beria, Yetzira, and Assiya. This is why it is said about them, Bore [creating], Yotzer [making], Ose [doing].7 All these degrees are one atop the other, and they are all one.
According to what is explained above, it should have said, Osecha Jacob [referring to Assiya], and not Bor’echa Jacob [referring to Beria]. The thing is that there is inverse relation between lights and vessels. When there are only Kelim de Beria in the Partzuf, there is only the discernment of Jacob in it. And when Kelim de Yetzira are added in the Partzuf, there is the discernment of Israel, as well. And when Kelim de Assiya are added to the Partzuf, there is the discernment of Jeshurun, as well.
This is why it says, Bor’echa Yaakov ve Yotzrecha Ysrael [Your creator, Jacob and your maker, Israel].8 And saying that Israel is Yetzira and HGT does not mean that it is VAK without a Rosh, for here it speaks only of Mochin and Rosh in the three Partzufim HBD, HGT, NHY in the Rosh of ZA.
249) Happy is the lot of Israel, for the Creator wanted them from among all the idol worshipping nations, for those are all vanity of vanities and will be lost on the day of their calling, when the Creator will blot them out from the world and will remain Him alone, as it is written, “and the Lord alone shall be exalted in that day.”
250) The Creator placed all the idol worshipping nations in the world under certain appointed ministers, and they all follow their gods. All shed blood and make war, steal, commit adultery, mingle among all who act to harm, and always increase their strength to harm.
251) Israel do not have the strength and might to defeat them, except with their mouths, with prayer, like a worm, whose only strength and might is in its mouth. But with the mouth, it breaks everything, and this is why Israel are called “a worm.”
252) “Fear not, thou worm of Jacob.” No other creature in the world is like that silk-weaving worm, from which all the garments of honor come, the attire of kings. And after weaving, she seeds and dies. Afterwards, from that very seed, she is revived as before and lives again. Such are Israel. Like that worm, even when they die, they come back and live in the world as before.
253) It is also said, “as clay in the hands of the potter, so you, the house of Israel, are in My hands.” The material is that glass; even though it breaks, it is corrected and can be corrected as before. Such are Israel: even though they die, they relive.
254) Israel is the tree of life, ZA. And because the children of Israel clung to the tree of life, they will have life, and they will rise from the dust and exist in the world, and they will become one nation, serving the Creator.
Midnight and the Morning Prayer
255) It is time for the reading of Shema.9 He rose and read the Shema and prayed his prayer. Afterwards he was told, “but we learned that before one sets out for the road, one should receive permission from one’s Maker and pray his prayer.”
256) He told him, “But I left before prayer time and before the time for the reading of Shema. Now that the sun has risen, I have prayed. But before I set out, I pleaded Him and consulted with Him, but I did not pray the morning prayer” [of which Shema is a part].
257) “I have been engaging in Torah since midnight, and when the morning came, it was still not time for prayer.” This is because at that time, when there is still the morning dimness, the wife speaks with her husband, they are united as one, and she should go to the tabernacle to be there with her maids. Hence, one should not stop things and put another thing between them, because through them they conjoin as one.
258) And now that the sun has risen it is time to say one’s prayer, as it is written, “They shall fear Thee while the sun endures.” What is, “while the sun endures”? It is to keep the light of the sun with us so as to shine with it for the Nukva, which is called “fear.” This is because fear, the Nukva, needs to be joined with the sun, which is ZA, and not separate them. And as long as the day has not shone, fear is not with the sun. Hence, when the sun shines, they should be joined together.
There are two Zivugim [plural for Zivug]: 1) to complete the Kelim of the Nukva, which is the nighttime Zivug; and 2) to complete her Mochin, which is the daytime Zivug. Yet, they are as removed from each other as two extremes, since the unification of the nighttime Zivug causes separation if it is extended in a daytime Zivug. And conversely, the act of unification in a daytime Zivug causes separation if it is extended in a nighttime Zivug.
There are two states in Nukva: 1) her being complete, prior to the waning of the moon, when her level was equal to that of ZA, as it is written, “the two great lights”; and 2) her current state, after her waning, when she has diminished to a point and has only that which ZA gives her.
There is merit to the first state, since she is complete with Hochma and her level is equal to that of ZA. But there is also a shortfall in her: because of the lack of light of Hassadim, the Hochma in her does not shine either, and she is dark. And she is given that state through the evening prayer and the engagement in Torah from midnight onwards. This is the night Zivug, as it is written, “She rises also while it is still night, and gives food to her household, and a portion to her maidens.”
Also, there is a benefit in the second state, for then she receives Hassadim from ZA, the Hochma in her dresses in Hassadim, and the Mochin within her shine in full. But opposite that, there is a shortfall in her at that time because her level is diminished and she becomes subordinate to ZA, with nothing of her own except that which ZA gives her. And that state is extended through the reading of Shema and the morning prayer in the daytime Zivug.
I will delve in the Torah from the middle of the night. This is a nighttime Zivug to complete the Kelim. At that time, she is given the first state, when both are at an equal level and she needs to go and be completed by the illumination of the Kelim, which is the tabernacle and its Kelim, and to give of that light to the maidens that dwell with her, as it is written, “She rises also while it is still night… and a portion to her maidens.” This is why it is forbidden to stop things that cause them to unite as one at an equal level, to revoke the illumination of Hochma, the first state, and to insert another thing between them. This is why it is forbidden to read the Shema and to pray the morning prayer at that time, since this lowers her level from the level of ZA in order to extend light of Hassadim for her. This is the second state, opposite of the first state, and one that revokes it.
When the sun rose, it was time for the daytime Zivug, to extend the second state to complete the Mochin. This is the time of prayer. This means that she is given that through prayer. This implies extending light of ZA, called “sun,” which is light of Hassadim, to shine for the Nukva so that the Hochma in her can clothe in ZA’s light of Hassadim. At that time, the Nukva needs to be with the sun, ZA, since then she has no light of her own, but must receive from the sun. Because if she is separated from ZA, she is completely annulled.
At night, fear, which is Nukva, is not with the sun, for she does not receive light of Hassadim from him. Instead, she receives light of Hochma from Bina. And when the time for the daytime Zivug arrives, they must be joined together, for then she becomes subordinate and needs to receive everything from him. For this reason, she then becomes connected and subordinate to the sun.
259) Two came to a field and sat. They raised their eyes and saw a mountain with strange creatures climbing at its top. One feared. The other told him, “Why are you afraid?” The first replied, “I see this great mountain and I see those creatures, that they are strange, and I fear lest they will harm us. The second told him, “Anyone who fears, should fear the sins in his hand, and those are not from among those strong creatures that were in the mountains.
260) It is known that Dinim [judgments] appear by extending the left line. And there is a difference between the male light and the female light, since by extending the left line, discerned as male light, which is from which is from above downwards, very harsh Dinim [judgments] appear. However, if he extends illumination of the left in the form of female light, which is from below upwards, only weak Dinim appear. The harsh Dinim are in the illumination of the left line, which is Isaac, and the illumination of the left line, as in female light, called “lower court,” are weak Dinim that are not harsh.
But here, as they went to correct the Nukva, when they arrived at the Nukva, called “a field of apples,” they sat, because the Mochin of the Nukva are extended while sitting, not while standing. This is so because the act of extending Mochin de GAR is implied by standing, like one who stands upright, and the act of extending Mochin de VAK is implied by sitting, like one who sits so his height is lower. And since they came to extend Mochin to the Nukva, which shines from below upwards, considered Mochin de VAK, they acted while sitting.
It is written, “They raised their eyes,” meaning they began to draw the Mochin, called “eyes.” “…and saw a mountain,” which means that he extended illumination of the left, called “mountain,” “…with strange creature climbing at its top,” implying the disclosure of the Dinim that come with the drawing of illumination of the left by the exposure of GAR of the left line, which is the top of the mountain.
And although he extended only VAK, being female light, it is impossible to draw VAK unless one draws a complete level first, and then leaves out the GAR and takes only the VAK. Hence, he saw the Dinim that appear from the GAR of the left while extending the VAK of the left. He saw that this mountain, the illumination of the left, is harsh, and saw that the creatures that were there, which are operators of the Din, were strange, meaning fearful and dreadful.
This is why he told him that one should not be afraid, unless he draws male light, from above downwards, for this is the sin of the tree of knowledge. But if he draws female light, there is no sin here and no fear. And those creatures that you see are not the same strong creatures that are in the mountains; they are not those harsh Dinim whose conduct is to appear with the extension of the male light in the left. This is because the ones that appear with the female light that you see are not harsh, but are weak Dinim.
This is so because the operators of the Din appear by the extension of male light in the illumination of the left. This is why they are called “dreadful,” since they are harsh Dinim that cast great fear. And those that are called “days” are the operators of the Din, which appear with the extension of the female light in the illumination of the left, which are only weak Dinim, and are therefore called “days” and not “dreadful.”10
Who Found the Hot Springs in the Wilderness
261) “…who found the hot springs in the wilderness.” It spells the “springs” without the Yod, indicating diminution. And it says that these are strange creatures, remote offspring of Cain after he was deported from the face of the earth, as it is written, “Thou hast driven me out… from the face of the land, and from Thy face shall I hide.”
It is also written, “and dwelt in the land of Nod.” This is so because Cain is illumination of the left, though there were two discernments in him. Before he was driven from the face of the land he was considered male light, in which harsh Dinim appear. And after he was driven out, there was only the female light in him, of illumination of the left, where only weak Dinim appear. And it says that the springs he had found in the wilderness are from the offspring of Cain after he was driven out of the face of the land. This is why they are called “springs” and not “dreadful” [see footnote no. 10], for there are no harsh Dinim in them.
262) The offspring of Cain are on the side of the spirits, storms, and damagers. This is because when the day of Sabbath had to be sanctified in twilight, flying, bodiless spirits were created from that side, which are neither from the Sabbath nor from the sixth day, since they are in the twilight. And those two days remained in doubt in them, which is why they do not receive sustenance from this day or from that day.
263) Cain’s sons expanded further and clothed in that side. But they did not clothe in them to exist in real existence. This is why they are called “springs” without the Yod, since they do not have sustenance from the sixth day or from the Sabbath day, as they were created during twilight.11
They are seen by people even though they are spirits, since once a day they clothe in a body. He replied, “he found those spirits,” called “springs,” and they taught him to beget bastards, to bring together a horse and an ass to create a mule. And they walk among the mountains and clothe a body once a day, and then unclothe it and remain without a body.
These spirits extend from the illumination of the left line. But there is a big difference between the illumination of the left in the discernment of the sixth day, and the illumination of the left in the discernment of the Sabbath. This is so because the sixth day is the middle line, and it comprises the Masach de Hirik, female Dinim. But the Sabbath day has no Masach at all. And since those spirits were created during twilight, which is part Friday part Sabbath, they are flawed and can receive from neither the sixth day nor from the Sabbath, for the doubt blemishes them and they cannot receive. Hence, they receive illumination from the left line, which shines during the Zivug of ZON on every day. The three lines that shine in the Zivug of ZON are called “three times,” since they extend from the three points, Holam, Shuruk, and Hirik.
264) He replied, “He was a bastard, for Zibeon came unto his mother and begot a bastard.” And he came in this way because of the spirit of impurity that clung to him. This is also why he had found those spirits and why they taught him all kinds of discernments from the side of impurity.
265) Several others that extend from that, all come from that same left side. They walk in the wilderness and are seen there because the wilderness is a desolate place, their dwelling place, since ruin always extends from the left. Yet, anyone who walks by the ways of the Creator and fears the Creator, does not fear them. They went and entered the mountain, meaning extended illumination of the left in the Nukva, and they were not afraid.
266) Similarly, all those desolate mountains are their dwelling places. And it is written about all those who engage in Torah, “The Lord shall keep thee from all evil.”
I Will Give Thanks unto the Lord with All My Heart
267) Praise the Lord, I thank. King David delved in the work of the Creator all his days. He would rise at midnight and praise and thank with songs and praises, to correct his place in Malchut above.
268) And when a Northern wind awoke at midnight, he knew that then the Creator was awakening to amuse Himself with the righteous in the Garden of Eden. This is why he would rise at that time and prevail in song and praise until the morning came.
269) When the Creator is in the Garden of Eden, all the righteous in the garden listen to His voice. Moreover, a thread of grace is drawn upon Him in the day, as it is written, “By day the Lord will command His loving kindness, and in the night His song shall be with me.” Also, all those words of Torah that he had said at night rise and crown before the Creator. And this is why King David engaged in the work of his Master during the night.
270) Of all the songs and praises that David said, the highest of all is Halleluiah [Praise the Lord]. This is because it includes both name and praise. And what are name and praise? They name is Yod–Hey [Koh], and the praise is the assembly of Israel, the Nukva, called “Praise” [Hallel]. This is so because she always praises the Creator and never rests, as it is written, “O God, keep not Thou silence; hold not Thy peace, and be not still, O God.” It is so because she establishes the orders of the praise and always praises Him. This is why the name and praise are implied in the word “Halleluiah,” together, for the name is Yod–Hey and the praise is His praise, Divinity, which always praises Him.
271) “I will give thanks unto the Lord with my whole heart,” with the good inclination and with the evil inclination. This is because they both exist within man, as it is written, “with all thy heart,” for the good inclination dwells in the right hemisphere of the heart and the evil inclination in its left hemisphere.
272) Israel are straight, since all the degrees are crowned in them: priests, Levis, righteous, and adherent, because they are straight. And the evidence is that the Creator crowns Himself in them.
The nature of the midnight Zivug is primarily to extend Hochma, and the nature of the daytime Zivug is primarily to extend Hassadim. Without them, the Hochma in the Nukva does not shine, and she is darkness and not light. And ZA, too, is not crowned in illumination of Hochma, except through the Nukva during the nighttime Zivug. “I will give thanks unto the Lord with my whole heart” explains these two illuminations and ZON’s completion from each other.
There are fourteen good times and there are fourteen bad times. It is possible to serve the Creator only on those days when the fourteen good times govern, and not on the days when the fourteen bad times govern. But one who is rewarded with illumination of Hochma corrects the fourteen bad times along with them, and they become great merits for him, and then he can serve the Creator in all his days, missing none of them.
This is why it is written that even on the days when the fourteen bad times governed, David would rise at midnight, which is the time for receiving those Mochin of illumination of Hochma, and praise and thank. It is so because these illuminations of Mochin are drawn by songs and praises, which are considered illumination of the left.
Yod–Hey are Mochin de ZA, light of Hassadim. And the praise is Nukva, in Mochin of illumination of Hochma, both on the fourteen good times and on the fourteen bad times. However, it is impossible to always praise in Mochin of light of Hassadim, since on the fourteen bad times there is no praise except through illumination of Hochma. Hence, “I will give thanks unto the Lord with my whole heart,” with the good inclination and with the evil inclination—with the right line, the good inclination, from which the fourteen good times come, and in the left line, the evil inclination, from which the fourteen bad times come.
“…in the council of the upright,” which is the middle line, containing the two lines within it, and hence including all the degrees.
“…council of the upright, and in the congregation.” The congregation is the Nukva, “..upright, and in the congregation” is ZON, since upright are Israel, ZA. And the text tells us that the Creator, ZA, is crowned with illumination of Hochma from the Nukva, called “congregation,” since it does not receive Hochma but only during the Zivug with the Nukva. This is why it is written, “..upright, and in the congregation.”
273) For this reason, one needs to always praise the Creator, because He desires songs and praises, for He wishes to be crowned in Hochma [wisdom]. And one who knows how to always praise the Creator, which is done through the Mochin of illumination of Hochma, the Creator receives his prayer and saves him. First, a nighttime Zivug is required, and then a daytime Zivug, for extension of Hassadim during the morning prayer.
Thou Art My Hiding-Place
274) “Thou art my hiding-place; Thou will preserve me from the adversary.” “Thou art my hiding-place” is the Creator, who hides and protects a person who is walking on the path of Torah, in the middle line. He hides under His wings so that no one can harm him. Question: why “Thou will preserve me from the adversary”? After all, it is the same as “Thou art my hiding-place”. Answer: from above and from below. From above—a person has enemies. It is said about that, “Thou art my hiding-place.” And from below, as well, this is the evil inclination. It is said about that, “Thou will preserve me from the adversary,” which is an enemy above and an enemy below, as it is written, “descends and incites, ascends and complains.” And had it not been for the evil inclination, man would have had no enemies in the world. This is why it is written, “Thou will preserve me from the adversary,” about the evil inclination.
275) When the left line illuminated from above downward, before it was included in the right, the evil inclination was gripping unto man from above and from below. It was complaining about him from above, and brought hatred upon him. And from below, it incited him to sin and to extend the left from above downward, which was the sin of the tree of knowledge. And when the middle line came, the left and the right were included in one another and illuminated together so the light of the right shone from above down, and the left, from below up. At that time, the hatred, cast over man from above, was cancelled and the evil inclination separated from him from below.
There are two things here: 1) Hiding-place, for which the GAR of the left line were diminished and he could shine only from below upwards, which is VAK de Hochma; and 2) Preserving, since by that, the left and the right were included in one another and that removed the slander and hatred from man.
The waning that brought the left line through the Masach de Hirik is considered a shadow, and the Masach is considered wings. The slander and hatred are drawn upon man from above during the illumination of the left from above downwards. The evil inclination incites him to sin and to extend illumination of the left from above downwards, as it is written, “descends and incites, ascends and complains.” And had the evil inclination not incited him to sin below, during the illumination of the left from above downwards, no hatred would have been extended over man from above.
Hochma is clothed in Hassadim after it has waned into VAK de GAR through the middle line. It is drawn and becomes revealed by songs, which is why it is called, “songs.” And since the Hochma was first diminished by the middle line, it was to the contrary, bringing Dinim [judgments] over him. This is why he said to the Creator, which is the middle line, “discharged songs,” which remained after their waning through the middle line. “You surround me with songs of deliverance, Selah,” by which to save me from all the damagers along the way. “…surround me” are the songs that contain degrees that suffice for deliverance after they have been diminished into VAK de GAR through the middle line, and became suitable for deliverance. This is so because this operation is performed by the middle line, the Creator, and this is why he told him, “surround me,” in second person, and not “will surround me.”
Reading in order indicates the right line, illumination of Hassadim, which shines from above downwards. And retroactive reading indicates the left line, illumination of Hochma, which shines from below upwards. And since this verse speaks of these two kinds of illuminations, it is possible to read it in order, as well as to read it retroactively, since it contains both the left side and the right side.
276) The songs and praises that David recited contain secrets and sublime matters in the secrets of the wisdom. This is so because they were all said in the spirit of holiness, since the spirit of holiness dwelt over David and he recited songs. Hence, they were all said in the spirit of holiness.
277) “Thou have rejected me.” It should have read, “I have been rejected.” What is “Thou have rejected me,” since the Creator did not reject him, but the enemies? And he replies that this is the Sitra Achra, who always rejects man and wishes to incite him and to lure him away from the Creator. This is the evil inclination, which is always with man. And it is to him that David returned and said, “Thou have rejected me that I might fall,” since he was inciting him by all the troubles that came upon him, to lure him away from the Creator. And David said about him, “Thou have rejected me that I might fall” in hell “but the Lord helped me” to not be given into your hand.
278) Hence, one should be wary of him, so he may not rule over him. And then the Creator will keep him in all his ways, as it is written, “Then shall thou walk in thy way securely, and thou shall not dash thy foot. … When thou walk, thy step shall not be straitened.” It is also written, “But the path of the righteous is as the light of dawn.” Happy are Israel, for the Creator keeps them in this world and in the next world, as it is written, “Thy people also shall be all righteous, they shall inherit the land for ever.” Blessed is the Lord forever, Amen and Amen.
1 In Hebrew, the word Oved can mean both wandering and destroying.
2 Count and Kind (in plural tense) are two very similar words in Hebrew with only the Vav being replaced by a Yod.
3 The Yod changes the Hebrew word Tzavar (neck) to Tzavarav (his necks), from singular to plural.
4 Nukva is considered units, ZA—tens, YESHSUT—hundreds, AVI—thousands, and AA—tens of thousands.
5 Koh, written in Hebrew with the letters Chaf–Hey, is a common way to write YH, part of the Yod, Hey, Vav, Hey. Because it is uncustomary to spell it as Yod and Hey, the Chaf replaces the Yod.
6 The words Rochel (merchant) and Rechilut (gossip) have the same root in Hebrew.
7 Bore comes from the word Beria, Yotzer comes from the word Yetzira, and Ose comes from the word Assiya.
8 In English, the traditional translation is “…that created thee, O Jacob, and He that formed thee, O Israel.”
9 A ritual reading of 3 Torah portions
10 In Hebrew the difference between the words is that Aleph is added to the beginning of the word dreadful.
11 In the Jewish calendar, the day begins in the evening of the previous day. Thus, The Sabbath begins Friday evening.