9. Furthermore, they said: Every time that the righteous depart this world, there is likewise annulled from this world all the harsh decrees, and the death of the righteous brings forgiveness for the sins of the generation. Therefore, we read the portion dealing with the sons of Aaron on Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) to bring forgiveness for the sins of Yisrael. The Holy One, blessed be He, says, 'Contemplate the death of these pious ones, and it will be accredited for you, as if you offered sacrifice this day to attain forgiveness.' We have learned that as long as Yisrael will be in exile and neither be able to offer offerings on this day nor will they be able to offer the two goats, they will at least have the memory of the two sons of Aaron. Thus, it will serve as atonement for them.
17. At that hour, the Holy One, blessed be He, said to the throne, WHICH IS MALCHUT, 'My throne, for which word, among all the words THEY UTTERED, should I save these righteous men?' It replied: For the word that all the others mocked, I would save them, NAMELY THE MERIT OF JACOB, "Jacob shall not now be ashamed, neither shall his face now grow pale," SO THEY WILL SEE THAT THEY WERE SAVED IN HIS MERIT. Just as THE MERIT OF Jacob stood fast when Abraham was cast into the fire, now it will stand fast for these - NAMELY HANANIAH, MISHAEL AND AZARIAH. This is what is written, "Thus says Hashem concerning the house of Jacob, who redeemed Abraham, Jacob shall not now be ashamed..." namely by the contempt and the mockery with which THE NATIONS AND NOBLES RIDICULED HIM.
29. We also learn from here that every person who has afflictions visited upon him from his Master, they serve as atonement for sins. All who have distress for affliction brought upon the just will have their sins pass away from this world. For this reason, on this day, YOM KIPPUR, we read about, "After the death of the two sons of Aaron" so that the congregation listens and feels distress for the pious who were lost and thus the congregation have their sins forgiven. Of him, who feels sorrow for the righteous who perished, or sheds tears for them, the Holy One, blessed be He, announces, "And your iniquity is taken away, and your sin is purged" (Yeshayah 6:7). Furthermore, he is reassured that his children will not die during his lifetime and it is written about him, "He shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days" (Yeshayah 53:10).
34. We have learned that this river gave forth deep streams, WHICH REPRESENT THE THREE SFIROT - CHESED, GVURAH AND TIFERET OF ZEIR ANPIN - with the anointing oil to replenish the Garden of Eden, WHICH IS MALCHUT, and water the trees and plants, NAMELY THE SFIROT OF MALCHUT. Of this, it is written, "The trees of Hashem have their fill; the cedars of Lebanon, which He has planted" (Tehilim 104:16). These streams, NAMELY CHESED, GVURAH AND TIFERET, flow and continue on and join two pillars that the Baraithas refer to as Yachin and Boaz, NAMELY NETZACH AND HOD. These NAMES are appropriate. From there, NETZACH AND HOD come out all these streams, NAMELY CHESED, GVURAH AND TIFERET, and rest in a certain level referred to as Righteous, NAMELY YESOD, as it is written, "But the righteous is an everlasting foundation (Heb. yesod)" (Mishlei 10:25). All together they join in that level referred to as "sea" that is the sea of wisdom, NAMELY MALCHUT. This is the meaning of the verse, "All the rivers run into the sea" (Kohelet 1:7).
35. You may say that when the streams reach this spot, NAMELY MALCHUT, they stop and don't come back, yet immediately following that, it says, "To the place where the rivers flow, thither they return (lit. 'return to go')" (Ibid.), for the river never stops its waters. "They return:" To where do THEY return? HE ANSWERS: They "return" to the two pillars, Netzach and Hod. They "go" to this Righteous, WHICH IS YESOD, to seek out blessings and joy. This is the secret of what we learned, "This is the Leviathan, whom You have made to play therein" (Tehilim 104:26). It is the righteous.
36. "These wait all upon You: that You may give them their food in due season" (Ibid. 27). What is meant by "in due season?" This is the Matron, NAMELY MALCHUT, known as the time of the Righteous, WHICH IS YESOD. For this reason, all look up to this "due season," all that are sustained here below. They are fed from this source, AS THE LOWER BEINGS RECEIVE ONLY FROM MALCHUT. This secret meaning was established in, "These wait all upon You..." as we have established.
51. "For I appear in the cloud upon the ark cover" (Vayikra 16:2). Rabbi Yehuda said: Fortunate are the righteous, whom the Holy One, blessed be He, delights to honor. We have learned about a king of flesh and blood, that if someone rides on his horse, he has committed a capital offense. However, the Holy One, blessed be He, placed Elijah on His own, as it is written, "And Elijah went up by a storm of wind into heaven" (II Melachim 2:11) AND IT IS WRITTEN, "HASHEM ANSWERED JOB OUT OF THE STORM" (IYOV 38:1). It is written: here "that he die not: for I appear in the cloud upon the ark cover." The Holy One, blessed be He, brought Moses into the cloud, as it says, "And Moses went into the midst of the cloud" (Shemot 24:18), meaning into the midst of the cloud, DENOTING MALCHUT. IT IS WITHIN THE SAME CLOUD, OF WHICH IT SAYS, "For I appear in the cloud upon the ark cover." This is the meaning of, "And Hashem will create upon every dwelling place of Mount Zion and upon its assemblies, a cloud and smoke by day" (Yeshayah 4:5), "For the cloud of Hashem was upon the tabernacle by day" (Shemot 40:38). ALL THESE CLOUDS HINT AT MALCHUT.
75. We have learned that it is written, "She considers a field, and buys it" (Mishlei 31:16). This is like what is written, "Where all the wild beasts (lit. 'beasts of the field') play" (Iyov 40:20), WHICH REFERS TO THE ASPECT OF JUDGMENT OF MALCHUT, WHOSE SECRET IS NIGHT AS MENTIONED EARLIER, AND IS ALSO REFERRED TO AS FIELD. "THE WILD BEASTS" REFLECTS THE SECRET OF YESOD, AND "PLAY" REFERS TO MATING, and about this is written, "So is this great and wide sea...There go the ships; there are the Leviathan, whom You have made to play therein" (Tehilim 104:25-26). LEVIATHAN IS THE SECRET OF YESOD, "TO PLAY" ALLUDES TO UNION, AS IT IS WRITTEN, "AND, BEHOLD, ISAAC WAS SPORTING WITH HIS WIFE" (BERESHEET 26:8). This is as the verse, "She is like the merchant ships: she brings her bread from afar" (Mishlei 31:14); "from afar" surely. FOR "HER BREAD," WHICH IS THE SECRET ILLUMINATION OF CHOCHMAH, DOES NOT SHED LIGHT SAVE FROM "AFAR," MEANING IT DOES SO WITH JUDGMENTS THAT REMOVE THE EXTERNAL FORCES FAR AWAY SO THEY WOULD NOT NURTURE FROM THIS GREAT LIGHT. THIS IS THE SECRET OF, "HASHEM APPEARED TO ME FROM AFAR" (YIRMEYAH 31:2). AND THE SECRET OF THE UNION PERTAINS TO NIGHT AND TO THE FIELD, AS MENTIONED EARLIER, AS IT BRINGS HER LIGHT from the brain inside the head, NAMELY CHOCHMAH, and from that which is above the head, NAMELY THE BLESSED ENDLESS LIGHT. THEREFORE, SHE NEEDS PROTECTION FROM EXTERNAL FORCES. "She brings her bread," NAMELY through the means of the righteous man, DENOTING YESOD. When they join together, there is universal joy. This is the meaning of the verse, "There are the dolphins (Heb. Leviathan) who you have made to play therein," THE LEVIATHAN BEING YESOD, WHILE "TO PLAY" REFERS TO MATING, AS EARLIER MENTIONED.
154. Rabbi Shimon said: How fortunate is the share of he who comes with the Queen when she welcomes the King, ZEIR ANPIN, to talk with Him, for he is with her at the time when the King extends His right hand, DENOTING THE LIGHTS OF CHASSADIM, to receive the Queen, as it is written, "If I take the wings of dawn, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea" (Tehilim 139:9). What is "uttermost parts of the sea?" This is the hour OF MORNING WHEN SHE WELCOMES ZEIR ANPIN, the uttermost parts of the sea, MALCHUT. The middle OF THE NIGHT is then her beginning, AS THEN SHE BEGINS TO SHINE, and it pertains to Judgment, AS LONG AS NIGHT PREVAILS, DUE TO LACK OF CHASSADIM TO CLOTHE HER CHOCHMAH. WITH THE ARRIVAL OF MORNING, it is her "uttermost parts," as her Judgments end and she enters beneath the wings of the King, DENOTING ZEIR ANPIN, AS IF TO SAY SHE IS CLOTHING HERSELF WITH HIS CHASSADIM, she and all those RIGHTEOUS PEOPLE joined with her. The verse states, "And dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea."
173. After BINAH gave birth, she produced a male child, placed him before her, NAMELY ZEIR ANPIN, and there is a need to write Vav, WHICH HINTS ABOUT THE SON; NAMELY, ZEIR ANPIN AFTER HE WAS BORN AND CAME FORTH TO HIS PLACE. This one, THE SON, inherits Aba and Ima. AND ZEIR ANPIN inherits two portions, ONE FOR HIMSELF AND ONE FOR MALCHUT. From him is nurtured the daughter. Therefore, it is necessary to write afterwards Vav-Hei together, ONE AFTER ANOTHER, just as the first Hei IS JOINED together WITH THE YUD, MEANING Yud Hei. There must be no separation between them. Also here Vav Hei are together and there is no need to separate them. We already established these matters. These matters here are also taken up to another place. Fortunate is the portion of the righteous, who understand supernal secrets of the Holy King and are worthy to be thankful before Him. Thus, it is written, "Surely the righeous shall give thanks to Your name: the upright shall dwell in Your presence" (Tehilim 140:14).
182. "And there shall be no man in the Tent of Meeting." Rabbi Yitzchak said, "Then will I remember My covenant with Jacob, and also My covenant with Isaac..." (Vayikra 26:42). This verse has been explained. Come and see: When Yisrael are in exile, it is as if the Holy One, blessed be He, is with them in exile, as the Shechinah never forsakes them. When Yisrael were in exile in Babylon, the Shechinah resided among them and returned with them from exile. In the merits of these righteous people who remained in the land, She resided in the land and never left them. Rabbi Yehuda said: Then the Queen returned to the King and all returned TO BE IN the banquet of joy of the king. For this, they are called the men of the Great Assembly. The Great Assembly surely, AS MALCHUT CALLED ASSEMBLY RETURNED FROM ITS DIMINISHED STATUS DURING THE EXILE TO REGAIN HER PROMINENCE.
207. What are my delights? The Torah as the Torah is called delights, as it is written, "And I was daily His delight" (Mishlei 8:30). We have learned that the Holy One, blessed be He, comes to delight Himself with the righteous in the Garden of Eden. What is meant by 'delight Himself?' IT MEANS to rejoice in them. As we learned, fortunate are the righteous about whom it is written, "Then you shall delight yourself in Hashem" (Yeshayah 58:14), so as to take pleasure from the drink of the stream, MEANING BINAH, as it is written, "And satisfy your soul in drought" (Ibid. 11). It is as if the Holy One, blessed be He, delights in them by means of that drink of the stream that the righteous take pleasure in, so He comes to have delight with the righteous. All those that toil in the Torah will merit to find delight in the righteous from that drink of the stream, MEANING BINAH.
208. We have learned that "as the hart (Heb. ayal) pants after the water brooks" refers to the Congregation of Yisrael, NAMELY MALCHUT, as the verse says, "O my strength (Heb. eyal), haste You to help me" (Tehilim 22:20). "MY STRENGTH" REFERS TO MALCHUT. "Pants after the water brooks," MEANING to be watered by the water of the spring, REFERRING TO BINAH, through the aid of the Righteous, NAMELY YESOD. "Pants (Heb. ta'arog)" as the verse says, "To the beds (Heb. arugot) of spices" (Shir Hashirim 6:2). "So my soul pants for You, Elohim," MEANING to be watered from You in this world and the World to Come.
209. HE QUESTIONS: What are the sources of the spring? HE ANSWERS: THERE IS one spring above, NAMELY BINAH, as it is written, "And a river went out of Eden to water the Garden..." (Beresheet 2:10). It flows on from there and waters the Garden, NAMELY MALCHUT. All these streams, NAMELY THE SFIROT OF ZEIR ANPIN THAT RECEIVE FROM THE RIVER, flow out and join in the two springs known as Netzach and Hod OF ZEIR ANPIN. These are called water brooks AND POUR in that level called Righteous, MEANING YESOD OF ZEIR ANPIN, from which it continues and goes out; and the Garden is watered, NAMELY MALCHUT. For this reason, the hart and the deer are together, REFERRING TO righteousness and the Righteous, NAMELY YESOD AND MALCHUT THAT ARE TOGETHER. HART STANDS FOR MALCHUT AND DEER FOR YESOD.
210. We have learned that it is written, "The voice of Hashem makes (lit. 'frightens') the hinds (Heb. ayalot) to calve" (Tehilim 29:9). IT IS PRONOUNCED "ayalot," yet spelled without Vav. This is the gazelle (Heb. ayelet) of dawn, REFERRING TO MALCHUT. Another explanation of the wild hinds: We have learned that at midnight, when the Holy One, blessed be He, enters the Garden of Eden to delight in the righteous, this voice, NAMELY ZEIR ANPIN, goes out and strikes pain to all those hinds that surround the holy throne of glory, NAMELY MALCHUT. This is what is written, "Sixty valiant men are round about it..." (Shir Hashirim 3:7). Another explanation, "Makes (Heb. yecholel) the hinds to calve" as it says "his hand slew (Heb. cholelah, also: 'created') the slant serpent" (Iyov 26:13), WITH CHOLELAH MEANING THAT HE CREATED AND STRENGTHENED. ALSO, "YECHOLEL" MEANS HE STRENGTHENS THE HINDS THAT ARE THE SIXTY WARRIORS. "And strips the forests bare" (Tehilim 29:9), as the verse says, "honeycomb (lit. 'forest of honey')" (I Shmuel 14:27),and, "I had eaten my honeycomb with my honey" (Shir Hashirim 5:1), MEANING THAT ZEIR ANPIN, WHICH IS THE SECRET OF THE VOICE OF HASHEM, nurtures those SIXTY VALIANT MEN CALLED HINDS as a mother nurtures her children. THEREFORE, IT IS WRITTEN, "THE VOICE OF HASHEM MAKES THE HINDS TO CALVE," MEANING IT NURTURES AND MAINTAINS THEM.
217. "With my spirit within me I seek You," MEANING I will cling to You with much love at night. Man needs to rise every night out of love for the Holy One, blessed be He, to toil with His service until morning rises, so there will be drawn upon him a thread of grace. We have learned that fortunate is the portion of man that loves the Holy One, blessed be He, with this love. The world survives thanks to these truly righteous ones who so love the Holy One, blessed be He, and they have sway over all harmful edicts that appear above and below.
221. I found in the book of Adam that all Holy Spirits above, MEANING ANGELS, do the mission OF THE HOLY ONE, BLESSED BE HE, and all come from one place. The souls of the righteous COME from two levels joined into one. Therefore, they ascend higher THAN ANGELS and their levels are greater THAN ANGELS. This is so. All those that were hidden there went down and up during their lifetime, such as Enoch, who did not die. We have already established this matter regarding Enoch and Elijah.
228. "Yet no man remembered that poor man" (Kohelet 9:15) MEANING THAT no one remembered to perform the commandment of the Torah and to toil in the Torah as that poor man that joined to everything in order to merit it. "Then said I, wisdom is better than strength" (Kohelet 9:16), MEANING permission to enter that world is given only to truly righteous men, to those who toil in Torah day and night, as well as crown themselves with the commandments of the Torah in this world to arrive with them in the World to Come.
231. Rabbi Shimon wept and said: A king without a queen is not considered a king, so a king who clings to a maid who is the servant of the queen, where is his honor? A voice will inform the Queen saying, "Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold your king comes to you: he is just and victorious" (Zecharyah 9:9). The Righteous, YESOD, is victorious, because until now he rode in a place that is not his, in a strange place, NAMELY THE MAID, and nurtured it. NOW THE QUEEN RETURNS TO HIM.
232. About this, it is written, "Humble, and riding upon an donkey" (Ibid.), as he was poor at first "and riding upon an donkey." As we have established, it refers to the lower crowns of the idolatrous nations, the firstborn of which Hashem killed in Egypt, AS THEY ARE CONSIDERED "AN DONKEY." This is the meaning of, "And all the firstborn of cattle" (Shemot 11:5). We have established this matter so to speak with "just and victorious" MEANING that he is more VICTORIOUS than anyone. Until now, the Righteous, NAMELY YESOD, resided without righteousness, DENOTING MALCHUT. Now that THE RIGHTEOUS AND RIGHTEOUSNESS are joined, he is "just and victorious," because he NO LONGER dwells in the Other Side. We have learned that "the righteous perishes (lit. 'is lost'), and no man lays it to heart" (Yeshayah 57:1). This verse is complicated. IT READS "lost" when it should be written 'is lost.' So what is the meaning of "lost?" HE ANSWERS: He really lost. What did he lose? The Queen - and he joined another place called maid.
233. Rabbi Yitzchak said to Rabbi Shimon: If it pleases my master, we have learned "but the righteous is an everlasting foundation" (Mishlei 10:25). Some explain that the world rests upon seven pillars, but some say the world rests on one pillar, NAMELY YESOD, AS THE VERSE SAYS, "BUT THE RIGHTEOUS ARE AN EVERLASTING FOUNDATION." How do we reconcile these words SO THAT THEY DON'T CONFLICT? He answered: They all pertain to the same idea. There are seven - THE SEVEN SFIROT, CHESED, GVURAH, TIFERET, NETZACH, HOD, YESOD AND MALCHUT - and among them, there is one pillar called Righteous, WHO IS YESOD. THE SEVEN rest upon it and the world is sustained upon it. As it rests upon it, it is as if it rests upon all the seven, SINCE YESOD CONSISTS OF SEVEN SFIROT - CHESED, GVURAH, TIFERET, NETZACH, HOD, YESOD AND MALCHUT. Therefore, it is written, "But the righteous is an everlasting foundation (Heb. Yesod)" and we have several times established these matters.
258. IN THE BOOK OF KING SOLOMON, it is written that the Holy One, blessed be He, made three dwellings for righteous people, FOR THEIR NEFESH, RUACH AND NESHAMAH AFTER THEIR DEMISE. One is for the Nefashot (Heb. plural) of the righteous that did not depart this world and are still in this world, AS THE NEFESH OF THE DECEASED DOES NOT DEPART THIS WORLD. When the world needs mercy and living PEOPLE are in distress, the Nefashot pray for them. They go and tell this to those who slumber in Hebron, MEANING THE PATRIARCHS, who awaken and go to the earthly Garden of Eden, where the Ruach of the righteous are clothed with crowns of light, take counsel with them and make a decree. And the Holy One, blessed be He, fulfills their wish and shows mercy to the world.
259. These Nefashot of the righteous are in this world to protect living PEOPLE. This is known as Nefesh. It does not depart this world and is present in this world to watch and know about and to protect the generation. The friends say that the deceased are aware of distress in the world and the punishment of the wicked in the land is by that NEFESH, as it is written, "That Nefesh shall be cut off from his people" (Vayikra 7:20).
260. The second dwelling is the earthly Garden of Eden. In it, the Holy One, blessed be He, made upper precious dwellings that are similar to this world and similar to the supernal world, MEANING THEY ARE INCLUDED WITH ASPECTS OF MALCHUT AND ASPECTS OF BINAH. THE GARDEN IS THE SECRET OF MALCHUT AND EDEN IS THE SECRET OF BINAH. The chambers are ALSO of two types LIKE THE DWELLING without number, and trees and grasses and fragrances rise daily. In that place rests that which is called Ruach of these righteous. This is the dwelling in which Ruach dwells. Each Ruach is clothed with precious garments of the likeness of this world and the supernal world.
262. We have learned that when the world needs Mercy, THEN the Nefesh of these meritorious righteous men, which is in this world in order to defend the world, rises, flies across the world and alerts the Ruach. The Ruach rises, adorns itself and alerts the Neshamah. The Neshamah alerts the Holy One, blessed be He, and then He has mercy on the world. Then He descends from above downwards, the Neshamah informs the Ruach and the Ruach informs the Nefesh.
264. When the world needs mercy, the living go and inform the Nefashot (Heb. plural) of the righteous, and weep on their graves. Those who are worthy to inform the righteous men: what is the reason THEY ARE WORTHY? BECAUSE they concentrate on clinging to Nefesh with Nefesh; then the Nefashot of the righteous awaken, assemble, fly to the slumberers of Hebron, inform them of the distress of the world, and they all ascend to the door of the Garden of Eden to inform the Ruach. These Ruchot (Heb. plural) that are adorned in the Garden of Eden, with celestial angels going among them, all inform the Neshamah, the Neshamah informs the Holy One, blessed be He, and all beg for mercy for the living. And the Holy One, blessed be He, shows Mercy to the world on their behalf. This is what Solomon meant in, "So I praised the dead that are already dead."
265. Rabbi Chiya said: I wonder if anyone knows how to notify the deceased besides us. Rabbi Aba replied: The pain THAT PEOPLE SUFFER, informs them. The Torah informs them. At the time when no one has knowledge, NAMELY HOW TO ALERT THE SOULS OF THE RIGHTEOUS MEN, they bring out a scroll of Torah near the graves and the souls are awakened wondering as to what reason the Torah appears exiled at this place. Then THE ANGEL Dumah informs them.
269. Rabbi Chizkiyah said TO THE GRAVE: Who are you? He answered: I am dead. I was just awakened for the sake of the Torah scroll. Once the world was in distress and the living came here with a Torah scroll to awaken us. My associates and I hurried to the slumberers at Hebron and, when they joined the spirits of the righteous in the Garden of Eden, it was found that the Torah scroll brought before us by the living was unfit. They were false to the name of the King, because an extra Vav was found in the Torah in the verse, "Whatever parts the hoof, and is clovenfooted" (Vayikra 11:3), WHICH WAS SPELLED WITH A REDUNDANT VAV. They said that since they were false to the name of the King, AS THE TORAH IS THE NAME OF THE KING, they would not return to them TO LET THEM KNOW IF THEIR PRAYER WAS ACCEPTED. They then dismissed me and my associates from the Yeshivah.
270. Until one elder man who was among them went and brought the Torah scroll of Rav Hamnuna Saba (the elder). Then the son of Rabbi Shimon, Rabbi Elazar, who was buried with us, was awakened. He went and prayed in the Garden of Eden for them and the world was healed. Then they allowed us TO RETURN TO THE YESHIVAH. From the time they took Rabbi Elazar from this cemetery IN GUSH CHALAV and placed him near his father IN MERON, there is no one who will awaken to rise before the slumberers of Hebron, for we are afraid to do so since the day when they dismissed me and my friends FROM THE YESHIVAH. Now, you have come to us with your Torah scroll. Therefore, I am shaken up as I say: Who will hasten to notify these genuine righteous men slumbering in Hebron. Rabbi Yesa slipped away AND WENT OFF with that remnant of the Torah scroll. Rabbi Chizkiyah said: Heaven forbid, the world is not in distress and we did not come for this reason.
271. Rabbi Chizkiyah and Rabbi Yesa left. They said surely when there are no righteous men in the world, the world will survive only by the merits of the deceased. Rabbi Yesa said: When the world needs rain, why do people go to the deceased TO PRAY? Does it not say about "one who inquires of the dead" that it is prohibited? He replied: You have not perceived the wing of the bird in Eden, REFERRING TO THE SECRET OF BINAH, MEANING YOU HAVE NOT ATTAINED THE LEVEL OF BINAH, SINCE THE VERSE "one who inquires of the dead" literally means the dead, denoting the world's evildoers from the idolatrous nations that are always dead, AS THE WICKED EVEN DURING THEIR LIFETIME ARE CALLED DEAD. But about Yisrael, who are truly righteous, Solomon said, "So I praised the dead that are already dead" (Kohelet 4:2), those that have already died at a different time, MEANING THEY GAVE THEMSELVES FOR THE TORAH, but not this time. They have already died, and now they are alive.
273. Therefore, we have learned that the righteous are not gone or lost from all worlds, even when he has departed this world. He is to be found in all the worlds even more than during his lifetime, as he was located only in this world during his lifetime. Afterwards, he is in three worlds - NAMELY BRIYAH, YETZIRAH AND ASIYAH - and he is in them all, as it is written, "Therefore do the virgins (Heb. alamot) love you" (Shir Hashirim 1:3). Do not pronounce it alamot but olamot (lit. 'worlds'). Blessed is their share.
274. We have learned that it is written, "Yet the soul (Nefesh) of my master shall be bound in the bond of life" (I Samuel 25:29). HE QUESTIONS: It says "the Nefesh of my Master," but it should read 'the Neshamah of my master,' BECAUSE NEFESH REMAINS IN THIS WORLD AND ONLY NESHAMAH RISES TO THE BUNDLE OF LIFE. HE ANSWERS: As we said, fortunate is the share of the righteous men that everything is tied one to another - Nefesh with Ruach, Ruach with Neshamah and Neshamah with the Holy One, blessed be He. The result is that Nefesh is tied to the bond of life, AS IT IS CONNECTED TO NESHAMAH, WHICH IS THE BUNDLE OF LIFE.
276. We have learned that Rabbi Shimon said to the friends: In my day, there will not be a need for mankind to do this, TO BRING OUT A TORAH SCROLL INTO THE STREET. Rabbi Yosi said to him: The righteous shield the world during their lifetime and even more so after their death, as it is written, "For I will defend this city to save it for My own sake, and for the sake of David My servant" (Yeshayah 37:35). Yet during the lifetime OF DAVID, it was not expressed. Rabbi Yehuda said, Why is this verse different, saying, "For My own sake, and for the sake of David My servant," giving the two equal importance? HE ANSWERS: The reason is that David merited to be joined to the holy Chariot of the Patriarchs, AS HE IS FOURTH TO THEM, THE SECRET OF MALCHUT. For this reason, everything is one. Blessed is He forever and ever.
278. We have learned that Rabbi Yehuda said: From the boldness of one righteous woman, many good things came to the world. Who is She? It is Tamar, as it is written, "And sat by the entrance of Enayim (lit. 'eyes')" (Beresheet 38:14). Rabbi Aba said: This portion proves TO US that Torah is both concealed and revealed, AND IT CONTAINS REVEALED MATTERS AND HIDDEN. I have looked through the entire Torah and I have not found anywhere a place called the entrance of eyes. This is because it is all concealed, mysteries among mysteries.
285. (A) "And she said, Will you give me a pledge, till you send it?" (Beresheet 38:17) These are the marks of a Queen blessed by the King during her nuptials. And he said: What pledge shall I give you? And she said: Your signet, and your cord, and your staff (Ibid. 18). These are the heavenly bonds, the jewels of the Bride who is blessed by these three - NAMELY Netzach, Hod and Yesod. Everything is contained within these three. The Bride is blessed from this. Immediately, "he gave it her, and came into her, and she conceived by him" (Ibid.).
(B) "And it came to pass about three months after" (Ibid. 24). HE QUESTIONS: What is meant by three months? HE ANSWERS: After a tripled month. The three months ARE CHESED, GVURAH AND TIFERET, as we have established. HERE IT IS WRITTEN, "About three months," MEANING as the fourth month began, DENOTING MALCHUT, to stir up the Judgments in the world due to the sins of mankind and to nurture from the Other Side. Then, "it was told Judah, saying, Tamar your daughter in law has played the harlot" (Ibid.), so the bride is found on the Other Side. It is written, "Bring her out" (Ibid.) as the verse says, "And cast down from heaven (to) earth the beauty of Yisrael" (Eichah 2:1). "And let her be burnt" (Beresheet 38:24) with a flaming fire in exile.
(C) It is written, "When she was brought forth" to be drawn into the exile, "She sent to her father-in-law, saying, By the man whose these are, I AM WITH CHILD" (Ibid. 25). It is not written: 'from whom these are,' but "whose these are," WHICH MEANS these items are proof of him by whom I am with child. THESE WERE BRIDAL ORNAMENTS AND THEY HAD ALREADY BECOME HERS, AS EARLIER MENTIONED, BUT ONLY HE GAVE THEM. Immediately, "And Judah acknowledged them, and said, She has been more righteous (Heb. tzedakah) than I" (Ibid. 26). Assuredly she is righteous, for this was brought about by that name, FOR SO IS MALCHUT CALLED. What brought upon her this name? He continued, "than I (also: 'from me')," as it is written, "For Hashem is righteous, He loves righteousness (Heb. tzedakah); the upright shall behold His face" (Tehilim 11:7). This is because tzedakah is justice (Heb. tzedek) and Hei, and she received that name from me. She inherited IT from me and all this is come from me.
319. And the Holy One, blessed be He, praises the Congregation of Yisrael like a rose, and we have already explained why HE PRAISED HER as a rose. Rabbi Yehuda said: When righteous men increase in the world, the Congregation of Yisrael, DENOTING MALCHUT, raises good fragrance BEING THE SECRET OF THE ILLUMINATION OF CHOCHMAH THAT SHINES FROM BELOW UPWARD AS FRAGRANCE, and is blessed WITH CHASSADIM from the Holy King, and her face shines. But when the wicked increase in the world, it is as if the Congregation of Yisrael does not raise up the good fragrance, and tastes from the bitter FEEDING of the Other Side. Then it is written, "And cast down from heaven (to) earth..." (Eichah 2:1), MEANING THE COUPLING OF ZEIR ANPIN CALLED HEAVEN AND MALCHUT CALLED EARTH HAS BEEN DISBANDED, and her face is dark.
320. Rabbi Yosi said, when righteous men multiply in the world, it is written, "His left hand is under my head, and his right hand embraces me" (Shir Hashirim 2:6), MEANING THE RIGHT AND THE LEFT JOIN IN UNITY, ONE WITH ANOTHER. When the wicked multiply in the world, it is written, "He has drawn back His right hand from before the enemy" (Eichah 2:3), AND THE LEFT RULES WITHOUT THE RIGHT. THEN ALL JUDGMENTS ARE POURED DOWN FROM IT. Rabbi Chizkiyah said, We understand it from here, WHERE IT IS WRITTEN, "and a whisperer separates close friends" (Mishlei 16.28), meaning that the King separates from the Queen, BECAUSE OF THE EVIL MAN CALLED WHISPERER. This is the meaning of the verse, "The nakedness of your father, or the nakedness of your mother, shall you not uncover" MEANING YOU SHOULD NOT CAUSE THE UNCOVERING OF JUDGMENTS ABOVE TO THE NURTURING OF THE OTHER SIDE THROUGH WHICH A SPLIT IN THE HOLY UNION WILL OCCUR.
348. "Nor does a fool understand this (Heb. zot)," MEANING they do not look into nor know the practices of "zot," MEANING MALCHUT REFERRED TO AS ZOT, in the world. Even though THE HOLY ONE, BLESSED BE HE, judges the world with His Judgments and PEOPLE see the Judgments of Zot, they come upon the righteous people and do not affect the guilty evildoers who transgress the words of Torah, as it is written, "When the wicked spring like grass..." (Ibid. 8). They inherit this world in all aspects and harsh penalties do not affect them, YET PEOPLE DO NOT KNOW WHY. Unless King David revealed this at the end of the verse, they would not know, as it is said, "That they shall be destroyed forever" (Ibid). HE PAYS THEM REWARD FOR THEIR GOOD DEEDS IN THIS WORLD in order to obliterate them from the World to Come. They will be THERE dust under the feet of the righteous, as it is written, "And you shall tread down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet" (Malachi 3:21).
351. We have learned that the righteous who toils in Torah day and night, the Holy One, blessed be He, draws upon him a thread of grace, which is marked on his face. From that mark, both those on high and those below have fear. Likewise, whoever violates the words of Torah, a spirit of defilement is drawn upon him, which is marked on his face and causes those high and low to flee from before him. They all proclaim: Leave the vicinity of he, who violated the Torah and the commandments of his Master. Woe to him and to his soul, and this person draws the spirit of defilement that is with him and transmits it to his son. In such a man the Holy One, blessed be He has no part, and He spares him in order to destroy him in the World to Come.
369. We have learned that after the passing of Cain and Abel, Adam returned to his wife. A different spirit enveloped him and he begot Seth. From this lineage, the righteous trace their line in the world. The Holy One, blessed be He, increased Chesed in the world, and with each was also born a female to populate the world, just as above, AS ZEIR ANPIN AND MALCHUT WERE BROTHER AND SISTER. The friends have established in the general Mishnah that it is written ABOUT THEM, "And if a man shall take his sister, his father's daughter, or his mother's daughter, and see her nakedness... It is a disgraceful (Heb. chesed, it is confusing but the word chesed can mean disgraceful or kindness) deed" (Vayikra 20:17). Assuredly it is Chesed, for after Chesed rests, offspring and roots come out underneath upwards, and branches spread, MEANING ZEIR ANPIN AND MALCHUT. What was near moved away. Then the branches grew, ZEIR ANPIN AND MALCHUT, and came to join into one in a tree. This was in the beginning, in the concealed state of the world. It is written, "For I have said, the world is built by love (chesed)" (Tehilim 89:3). THEREFORE, from now on, people in this situation THAT MARRY THEIR SISTER "shall be cut off in the sight of their people" (Vayikra 20:17).
381. Rabbi Yehuda continued: Yisrael are called brothers to the Holy One, blessed be He, as His love for them has never been interrupted. Jerusalem below is called "your mother's sister" (Vayikra 18:13), as it is written, "Jerusalem, built as a city that is compact together..." (Tehilim 122:3), MEANING THAT JERUSALEM BELOW IS LIKE THE CITY THAT IS COMPACT TOGETHER, MALCHUT. What is meant by "compact together?" It means that the King joined, in the six ends, ZEIR ANPIN, with all aspects of the King, with the grade of the Righteous, YESOD, in which all Sfirot of the King are included. This is the meaning of, "that is compact together," MEANING TOGETHER WITH ALL SFIROT OF ZEIR ANPIN.
388. Seven complete weeks, MEANING SEVEN SFIROT OF MALCHUT THAT IS CALLED SHABBAT, WHEN THEY ARE COMPLETED, are expressed by seventy letters OF THE NAME OF AYIN-BET (72). THE MAIN BODY IS SEVENTY, AND TWO EXTRA ARE THE SECRET OF WITNESSES OR SCRIBES. HE EXPLAINS HIS WORDS: When the 72 ascended, they ascended by the letters Vav, DENOTING ZEIR ANPIN, IN ITS CHESED, GVURAH AND TIFERET, which are listed in the portion of Beshalach in the verses, "And the angel...removed...and it came... And Moses stretched out" (Shemot 14:19-21). When the Shechinah receives FROM ZEIR ANPIN and the seven impressions are stamped on Her BY HIM, NAMELY SEVEN COMPLETE SFIROT, THEN seventy imprinted letters OF THE NAME AYIN-BET rise from Her. We have learned that the letters OF THE NAME AYIN-BET ascended through certain marks and hidden ways KNOWN only to truly righteous men, pillars of the world.
391. Happy are the righteous in both this world and the World to Come, as the Holy One, blessed be He, desires to honor them and reveals to them esoteric matters concerning His Holy Name that He did not even reveal to holy supernal ANGELS. Therefore, Moses was able to be adorned even among the holy ANGELS, and they were unable to approach him as if he were a burning fire and flaming hot coals. THE REASON WAS THAT HE MENTIONED THE HOLY NAMES THAT THE ANGELS DID NOT KNOW. Were it not for that, what did Moses have THAT HE WOULD BE ABLE to stand among them? Blessed was Moses' lot that when the Holy One, blessed be He, began to speak with him, he wanted to know His Holy Name, both the concealed and revealed, each one properly. Then he united and knew more than all mankind.
396. We have learned that Rabbi Yosi said: It is written, "I am Hashem" (Vayikra 18:30), MEANING I am Hashem, who will give good reward for the righteous in the World to Come. I am Hashem who will take revenge upon the wicked in the World to Come, MEANING upon those about whom it is written, "That have rebelled against Me" (Yeshayah 66:24). HE QUESTIONS: It is written, "I am Hashem," WHICH POINTS TO THE QUALITY OF MERCY and it is written, "I kill, and I make alive" (Devarim 32:39), WHICH POINTS TO THE QUALITY OF JUDGMENT. HE ANSWERS: Even though I have the quality of Mercy, the evildoers convert Me to the quality of Judgment. We have learned that Yud Hei Vav Hei Elohim is a full name. YUD HEI VAV HEI STANDS FOR MERCY AND ELOHIM FOR JUDGMENT, MEANING if they merit it, then it is Yud Hei Vav Hei. If they do not merit, it is Elohim. Rabbi Shimon said, The evildoers cause a defect above. What is the defect? It is, as we established, a real defect as explained EARLIER.
412. Rabbi Yitzchak said: It is written, "One thing have I desired of Hashem, that I will seek after...to behold the beauty of Hashem" (Tehilim 27:4). Blessed are the pious that numerous supernal treasures await them in that world, DENOTING BINAH, as the Holy One, blessed be He, delights in them in these worlds, as we have explained. FOR THEIR SAKE HE ASKED TO BEHOLD the beauty of Hashem. We have already learned THAT IT IS THE GLOW OF ATIKA THAT IS DRAWN IN BINAH. RABBI YITZCHAK DISPUTES WITH RABBI YEHUDA, WHO SAID THAT "THE FLOOD OF GREAT WATERS SHALL NOT COME NEAR HIM" REFERS TO THE LIGHTS OF ATIKA THAT CANNOT BE CONCEIVED. HOWEVER, THERE ARE SOME RIGHTEOUS WHO MERIT THIS TOO. Rabbi Chizkiyah says: From here, IT SEEMS THAT THERE ARE PIOUS WHO DO MERIT THE LIGHT OF ATIKA, as it is written, "Neither has the eye seen, that an Elohim, beside You, should do such a thing for him that waits for Him" (Yeshayah 64:3). HE ASKS, 'He should do:' It should have said, 'You should do,' SINCE IT WRITES "BESIDE YOU," A TERM OF SECOND PERSON. HE REPLIES: Rather, 'he should do' is exact, BECAUSE IT REFERS TO ATIKA. THEREFORE, HE SPEAKS IN TERMS OF THIRD PERSON. Similarly, "behold, I (lit. 'he') will add to your days fifteen years" (Yeshayah 38:5). IT SHOULD HAVE SAID, 'I WILL ADD,' SINCE IT PRECEDES IT WITH "BEHOLD (LIT. 'HERE I AM')." IT IS ONLY BECAUSE IT ALLUDES TO ATIKA, WHO IS NOT CONCEIVED TO BE HERE. THEREFORE, HE SAYS IN THIRD PERSON, "HE WILL ADD." IT IS BECAUSE LIFE IS DRAWN FROM MAZAL, MEANING FROM THE BEARD OF ATIKA. Similarly, "Cast your burden upon Hashem" MEANS ABOVE HASHEM, NAMELY MAZAL, FOR THIS IS A PRAYER FOR SUSTENANCE. It is also written, "And prayed to (lit. 'over') Hashem," ALSO REFERRING TO MAZAL THAT IS HIGHER ABOVE OF HASHEM, AS THIS PRAYER WAS FOR CHILDREN. Yet all is one, FOR IT IS ALL DRAWN FROM THE MAZAL, THE BEARD OF ATIKA KADISHA. THUS, IT IS POSSIBLE TO RECEIVE AND DRAW ABUNDANCE ALSO FROM ATIKA KADISHA, UNLIKE RABBI YEHUDA'S WORDS.
413. Fortunate is the portion of the righteous in this world and the World to Come. Regarding them, it is written, "But let all those that put their trust in You rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because You do defend them: and let those who love Your name be joyful in You" (Tehilim 5:12). It is also written, "Surely the righteous shall give thanks to Your name: the upright shall dwell in Your presence" (Tehilim 140:14) and "They that know Your name will put their trust in You: for You, Hashem, have not forsaken those who seek You" (Tehilim 9:11).