30. "And Elohim led the people about, through the way of the wilderness of the Sea of Reeds," NAMELY, to make way to His place IN ORDER TO EVENTUALLY SPLIT THE SEA OF REEDS. IF NOT FOR THIS, IT WOULD HAVE BEEN ENOUGH TO SIMPLY LEAD THEM THROUGH THE WILDERNESS, AND NOT BY WAY OF THE SEA OF REEDS. Rabbi Yehuda said, Why the difference? When Yisrael were in Egypt, it is written, "Let My people go" (Shemot 5:1); "if you refuse to let My people go" (Shemot 10:4); and, "Yisrael is My son, my first born" (Shemot 4:22). They were not circumcised at that time and were not bound TO THE HOLY ONE, BLESSED BE HE, properly. But once they were circumcised, had offered the Passover sacrifice, and were bound to Him, He calls them "the people" and not "My people."
128. Come and behold, Pharaoh was nurtured by this Judgment, and so he and all his people perished. After this Judgment OF MALCHUT was aroused against them, the minister that was appointed to rule over them was removed. Then all those below perished, as it is written, "And He took off their chariots' wheels." What is "their chariots' wheels?" MEANING the chariots of Pharaoh. And who is their wheel? THE MEANING is that minister who rules over them. Therefore, they all died in the sea. And why in the sea? Rather the upper sea, WHICH IS MALCHUT, aroused against them, and they were exterminated by it. Therefore, it is written that they "drowned in the Red Sea (Heb. suf)." Rabbi Yosi said, Assuredly it is so. And therefore, it is written, "drowned in the Red Sea (Heb. suf)," WHICH MEANS the end (Heb. sof) of the levels, NAMELY MALCHUT - THAT THEY WERE OBLITERATED BY HER.
265. "His chosen captains also are drowned in the Sea of Reeds." "His chosen captains" has already been explained. "And captains over every one of them" (Shemot 14:7). All the levels were as two and one FROM ABOVE, ones upon the others; they were made in the likeness of above. And all of them were given over to the hands OF MALCHUT, to break them from their domination, the ones as well as the others, THOSE ABOVE AND THOSE BELOW.
273. In the lower left side there is the dominion of the Other Side. FOR, "ELOHIM HAS MADE THE ONE AS WELL AS THE OTHER" (KOHELET 7:14). AND TO EVERYTHING THAT IS IN BRIYAH, YETZIRAH, ASIYAH OF HOLINESS, THERE IS A CORRESPONDING ONE IN THE OTHER SIDE. And they grasp onto those above, FOR THEY NURTURE FROM HOLINESS. AND NOW, AT THE SPLITTING OF THE SEA OF REEDS, they descend, broken by the strong power of Holiness, as we have established, "The chariots of Pharaoh and his host..."
344. But they did not travel until Moses grasped them and showed them the radiant shine of the glory of the Holy One, blessed be He, in the wilderness. Then, because of great longing and desire to perceive, Moses caused them to travel. This is what is meant by, "So Moses brought Yisrael from the Sea of Reeds, and they went out into the wilderness of Shur" (Shemot 15:22). What is the meaning of "the wilderness of Shur?" This was the desert where they wanted to perceive and gaze upon the precious splendor of the Holy King. Therefore, it is called "the wilderness of Shur (lit. 'observe')," WHICH MEANS there is gazing there.