312. "So He drove out the man" (Beresheet 3:24). Rabbi Elazar asks: Who drove whom out? Could it have been the Holy One, blessed be He, who expelled Adam? BECAUSE IT WAS NOT WRITTEN THAT HASHEM DROVE MAN OUT, JUST "HE DROVE OUT THE MAN." The particle ET ('THE') BEFORE "THE MAN" is reversed. IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN, 'man drove out Et.' IN THE WORDS "DROVE OUT ET," THE PARTICLE ET CLEARLY INDICATES THE SHECHINAH. Adam certainly did drive out Et, BUT THE WORDS ARE REVERSED.
313. Hence, it was written before: "therefore Hashem sent him out of the Garden of Eden" (Ibid. 23). Why was it written that He sent him out? Because Adam expelled Et, WHICH IS THE SHECHINAH, as we have said. THEREFORE, "HASHEM SENT HIM OUT OF THE GARDEN OF EDEN." IT IS THEN WRITTEN, "And He placed" (Ibid. 24), instead of, 'and Hashem placed.' This is because it was Adam who placed THE CHERUBS at this place, because he has brought about the blocking of the SUPERNAL paths and ways. SUSTENANCE WAS WITHHELD, Judgment was brought upon the world, and curses have been upon the world ever since.
314. "And the bright blade of a revolving sword" (Ibid.) refer to those who effect Judgments in the world. THEY KEEP LEAPING FROM ONE SHAPE TO ANOTHER AND FROM ONE MANIFESTATION TO ANOTHER. They keep changing into many shapes, so as to make the world pay its dues. Sometimes they manifest as men; other times as women. At times they are scorching fires, and at times they are spirits. And no one can control them. All this is "to guard the way of the Tree of Life" (Ibid.) to prevent them from doing harm as they did before.
315. "The bright blade of a revolving" are all those who blaze fire and severe punishment upon the heads of the wicked and the sinners. The shapes change themselves into several kinds of judgments, according to the actions of the humans. They are CALLED bright, as it is written: "and the day that is coming shall burn them up" (Malachi 3:19).
316. THEY ARE CALLED "swords," which is "the sword of Hashem" as it is written: "The sword of Hashem is filled with blood" (Yeshayah 34:6). Rabbi Yehuda said that the flames of the sword are the avengers below, IN THIS WORLD, who change from one shape to another. They are given charge of harming and accusing the wicked, who transgress their Master's commands.
317. Come and see: Once man sinned, he drew upon himself a number of evil spirits, judges and judgments that terrified him and that he could not subdue. Solomon was versed in supernal wisdom and the Holy One, blessed be He, crowned him with royalty. Hence, all the people of the world feared him. But when he sinned, he drew upon himself many harmful and punitive agents and weavers of judgments, NAMELY JUDGMENT MONGERS, and he feared them all. They were able to harm him, and all that he had they took away from him.
318. Hence, by his actions, and according to the path he chooses, man draws upon himself emissaries that go towards him. Adam, BY HIS SIN, drew upon himself another defiled force and that force corrupted him and all mankind after him.
319. Come and behold: When Adam sinned, he drew upon himself the force of corruption, and he defiled himself and all the people in the world. This is the evil serpent who is unclean and polluted the world. As we have learned, when THE ANGEL OF DEATH removes the soul of a person, what is left is an unclean body that defiles the house and all those who approach it. Hence, "He that touches the dead body..." (Bemidbar 19:11), BECAUSE DEATH COMES FROM THE DEFILED EVIL SERPENT.
320. For this reason, when THE ANGEL OF DEATH has taken the soul and has defiled the body, permission is granted for all sorts of defilement to settle on that body. The body has been defiled by the side of the evil serpent that has taken possession of it, BECAUSE DEATH COMES FROM IT. Hence, wherever that evil serpent dwells is made unclean.
321. Come and behold: When people sleep on their beds at night, and when night spreads its wings upon the world, they taste the taste of death. Because they do, the spirit of defilement roams around the world and defiles it. It settles upon a man's hands, and he is made unclean.