478. The first chamber, NAMELY, YESOD AND MALCHUT, IS THE FIRST FROM BELOW UPWARD. It marks the beginning of the Faith, NAMELY, THIS CHAMBER IS MALCHUT OF THE CHAMBERS CALLED 'FAITH'. It is the start of the secret of the Faith, NAMELY, OF THE MYSTERY OF MALCHUT OF ATZILUT, and is of the grade of sight within Faith, NAMELY, THE ILLUMINATION OF CHOCHMAH IN IT IS CALLED 'SIGHT'. The true prophets used to look from within the mirror, which does not shine, MALCHUT, for that CHAMBER is the beginning of the Faith, MALCHUT OF ATZILUT. It is written, "When Hashem spoke at first with Hosea" (Hoshea 1:2), for he looked from this grade, NAMELY, THE FIRST CHAMBER, the beginning of all the ascending grades, and the end of all the descending grades OF THE OTHER SIDE.
479. Since Hosea saw, in this beginning, NAMELY, OF THE CHAMBERS OF DEFILEMENT, the end of all the grades, he had to take "a wife of harlotry" (Hoshea 1:2). This is because the children of Yisrael were tempted and drawn away FROM THE FIRST CHAMBER downward to the place called "a wife of harlotry," MALCHUT OF DEFILEMENT, by leaving behind, instead of joining, the "woman of worth" (Mishlei 31:10), MALCHUT OF HOLINESS. From there he saw all the chambers on the side of defilement.
480. The chambers of defilement defile whoever clings to them. Hence, SINCE HOSEA HAD TO LOOK AT THE CHAMBERS OF DEFILEMENT, it is written, "take to you a wife of harlotry..." IT IS DIFFICULT TO UNDERSTAND why a true prophet should need that. But a man should not enter these chambers OF DEFILEMENT, lest he be drawn to them, as was Noah, as it is written, "and he drank of the wine, and was drunk, and he was uncovered within his tent" (Beresheet 9:21), MEANING THAT HE CLUNG TO THE OTHER SIDE, WHICH IS THE INTOXICATING WINE.
481. Hosea was afraid to look at the chambersto which the children of Yisrael clung, to be defiled, IN FEAR of being drawn after them, as it is written of Noah "and he drank of the wine, and was drunk: and he was uncovered." Then He said to him "take to you a wife of harlotry, and children of harlotry," THE WIFE OF HARLOTRY BEING MALCHUT OF THE OTHER SIDE, AND THE CHILDREN OF HARLOTRY HER GRADES. It is also written, "So he went and took Gomer the daughter of Divlayim" (Hoshea 1:3), to know what the children of Yisrael clung to and were defiled with and why they left the secret of the Faith, MALCHUT OF HOLINESS, for a strange El, MALCHUT OF DEFILEMENT. And he saw THIS within the first chamber, the opening of all the grades. THEREFORE, IT IS SAID OF HER "SIN CROUCHES AT THE DOOR" (BERESHEET 4:7), FOR AT THE VERY OPENING OF THIS CHAMBER, THE OTHER SIDE CROUCHES, WHICH IS A WIFE OF HARLOTRY. AND THE CHIEFTAIN OF THE OTHER SIDE IS STANDING AT THE GATE.
482. This chamber is the start for all who ascend the grades. It is a compartment within the light, to be adorned with its grades, through which to look at the supernal grades, as it is written, "and they saw the Elohim of Yisrael" (Shemot 24:10). BECAUSE THIS CHAMBER IS AN ASPECT OF MALCHUT, SIGHT PERTAINS TO IT, FOR SIGHT IS ONLY IN MALCHUT.
483. There is a chieftain appointed over this chamber, by the name of Tahariel. He stands at the gate of the chamber, and all the souls, AFTER PASSING FROM THIS WORLD, mount AND WISH TO ENTER THIS FIRST CHAMBER. This chieftain stands at the gate, together with other chieftains, they are wholly ablaze with fire, with scepters of fire in their hand, all eyed. FOR THERE IS SIGHT IN THIS CHAMBER, IN THE SECRET OF CHOCHMAH CALLED 'EYES', SINCE CHOCHMAH IS REVEALED ONLY WHEN JUDGMENT IS IN THE OPEN. THEREFORE, THEY ARE OF BLAZING FIRE... This chieftain stands on this side, and if the soul, AFTER PASSING FROM THIS WORLD, has the merit to enter, he opens the gate and THE SOUL enters.
484. And if the soul has not the merit to enter, BECAUSE IT SINNED IN THIS WORLD, then another chieftain OF THE OTHER SIDE standing at another side, is summoned, together with thousands and myriad of guardians of law and accusers. The other, holy chieftain, pushes it and the other of the side of defilement receives it, and puts it in the chambers of defilement. All the guardians of law and accusers hold it, and bring it down to Gehenom, where it is judged for twelve months. This is the place of correction of the Other Side, a court to judge the wicked.
485. In the same manner is the holy chieftain that stands at the entrance. When all the prayers that cleave airs and firmaments come before the King. If this is a public prayer he opens the gate and brings it in, WHERE IT WAITS until all the prayers in the world become a crown on the head of the righteous one who lives forever, YESOD, as we already explained.
486. If the prayer is solitary, it rises until it reaches the entrance of this chamber, where the chieftain stands. If it is good enough to be presented before the Holy King, he immediately opens the door and lets it in. If it is not worthy, he pushes it out, and it goes down and hovers about the world, standing at the lowest of the firmaments in the world below, where there is a chieftain by the name of Sahadiel, in charge over that firmament. He takes all the rejected prayers, called 'unfit prayers', and stores them until that person repents.
487. If he properly repents before his Master, and prays another, good prayer, then when the good one rises, the chieftain Sahadiel takes the UNFIT prayer and elevates it, until it meets the good prayer and they both rise and intermingle and come before the Holy King.