216. Ra'aya Meheimna (the Faithful Shepherd). The Faithful Shepherd said: THE PURPOSE OF the sacrifices is to remove the impure aspects and bring the holy aspects near. And we learned in the first compilation that among the arteries of the liver, WHICH ARE THE FORCES OF SAMAEL, AS ABOVE, there are large ones and there are those that are both large and small, and they spread out from there in a number of directions, and they take the parts and the pieces and fats that are consumed on the altar the whole night, for the whole of the sacrifice belongs to Hashem, AND THE OTHER SIDE TAKES ONLY THE PARTS AND THE FATS.
217. The Holy Luminary, THAT IS, RABBI SHIMON, said, O, Faithful Shepherd, did you not say before that the only purpose of the sacrifices of the Holy One, blessed be He, is to draw close the Yud to the Hei and the Vav to the Hei? Nevertheless, although all the sacrifices have to be offered before Him, BEFORE THE HOLY ONE, BLESSED BE HE, He distributes the foodstuffs of the sacrifices to all the various camps, to each as befits it. To the mental ones, NAMELY ON THE SIDE OF HOLINESS, HE GIVES the nourishment of the Torah, and drinks of the wine and water of the Torah, WHICH IS THE SECRET OF THE CENTRAL COLUMN THAT IS CALLED 'TORAH,' BY WHICH ALL THE LIGHTS ARE CORRECTED. To the natural ones, which are the demons who are like people, NAMELY THE OTHER SIDE, He gives them natural foodstuffs, and their fire descends to devour them, NAMELY THE ILLUMINATIONS COMING FROM THE LEFT COLUMN OF SEPARATION, WITHOUT THE RECONCILING OF THE CENTRAL COLUMN THAT IS CALLED 'TORAH.'
218. And this is as the sages taught. If Yisrael are meritorious, He would descend like a lion of fire to devour the sacrifices, but if they were not meritorious, He would descend like a dog of fire. Likewise, when a man dies, if he has been meritorious, the image of a lion descends to welcome his soul, but if he has not BEEN MERITORIOUS, an image of a dog descends, concerning which David said: "Deliver my soul from the sword; my only one from the power of the dog" (Tehilim 22:21).
219. And since the Holy One, blessed be He, desired to save the bodies of Yisrael from them, and their souls, too, He commanded that sacrifices be offered of beasts and bodies in their stead, SO THAT THE OTHER SIDE SHOULD NOT HAVE CONTROL OVER THEM, BUT SHOULD ENJOY THEM (THE SACRIFICED ANIMALS). This fulfills the verse: "If your enemy be hungry, give him bread to eat, and if he be thirsty give him water to drink" (Mishlei 25:21). AND THUS WILL THE ACCUSER BECOME COUNSEL FOR THE DEFENSE. But the Holy One, blessed be He, takes nothing FROM THE SACRIFICE except the wish of the heart and the bearking of the heart, as it is written: "The slaughtered sacrifices for Elohim are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, Elohim, You will not despise" (Tehilim 51:19). They are like earthenware vessels, about which it is said: 'After they are broken, they become clean.'
220. The priest is the brain, STANDING FOR ZEIR ANPIN, WHICH IS RIGHT. Levi is the heart, STANDING FOR MALCHUT, WHICH IS ON THE LEFT. Yisrael is the body, NAMELY THE CENTRAL COLUMN, FOR WHEN THE SOULS OF YISRAEL RISE UP TO MAYIN NUKVIN (LIT. ' FEMALE WATERS'), THEY BECOME THE CENTRAL COLUMN, BETWEEN ZEIR ANPIN AND MALCHUT. And it is said about them: 'The priests at their service, the Levites at their stand, and Yisrael at their post.' And if the liver, WHICH IS SAMAEL, wishes to offer fatty parts that are ritually impure to the heart, it receives only the fat of a ritually pure fatty part. For just as in the body there are pure and impure fatty parts, clean blood without waste matter and blood contaminated with waste matter, as the arteries of blood in the heart, WHICH IS MALCHUT, are the holy hosts, while the arteries of the liver, WHICH IS SAMAEL, are the impure hosts. Here also, there are camps of the Evil Inclination and camps of the Good Inclination. The latter are appointed over the arteries of the heart and the former over the arteries of the liver. Similarly, too, there are two types of people: Yisrael, WHICH IS LIKE THE ARTERIES OF THE HEART, and the other nations of the world, WHO ARE LIKE THE ARTERIES OF THE LIVER.
221. The Faithful Shepherd said to him: What you have said is altogether beautiful, but even Yisrael are not all equal, for there are among them the children of royalty, from the side of the holy Malchut that is composed of ten Sfirot and all the names of Yud Hei Vav Hei and their titles. And there are those that are like slaves, from the side of the servant, METATRON, who is "the eldest servant of his house" (Beresheet 24:2), NAMELY OF MALCHUT. There are also those who are like animals, about whom it is said: "And you, My flock, the flock of My pasture, are men" (Yechezkel 34:31). And the Holy One, blessed be He, commanded those who are like sheep to sacrifice animals in their stead, to make atonement for them. But the sacrifices of those who are like angels are the good deeds, over which are appointed angels who offer the good deeds before the Holy One, blessed be He, in their stead.
222. And there are those who are the children of Yud Hei Vav Hei, about whom it is written: "You are the children of Hashem your Elohim" (Devarim 14:1). It is because of their sins that the letters OF YUD HEI VAV HEI become separated, FOR THERE IS NO SUPERNAL UNION OF YUD-HEI, AND THERE IS NO UNION OF ZEIR ANPIN AND MALCHUT, WHICH ARE VAV-HEI. And their correction lies in the Torah, which is the name of Yud Hei Vav Hei, to bring the letters together by means of their sacrifice: Yud with Hei, WHICH IS THE SECRET OF THE UNION OF ABA AND IMA, and Vav with Hei, WHICH IS THE SECRET OF THE UNION OF ZEIR ANPIN AND MALCHUT.
223. And in all the sacrifices, whether OF THOSE WHO ARE animal-LIKE, or those who are like the ASPECTS OF angels appointed over the precepts, or of those WHO ARE OF THE ASPECT of Malchut, or OF THOSE WHO ARE of the name OF THE YUD HEI VAV HEI, in all cases THE SACRIFICE has to offer them all to the Holy One, blessed be He, THE UNION OF THE FOUR holy letters OF THE YUD HEI VAV HEI. AND THE HOLY ONE, BLESSED BE HE, mounts WITH THE FOUR LETTERS OF THE YUD HEI VAV HEI on the four living creatures of the angels, MICHAEL, GABRIEL, URIEL AND RAPHAEL, WHICH ARE THE CHARIOT THAT IS IN BRIYAH. AND THE HOLY ONE, BLESSED BE HE rides, WITH THE FOUR LETTERS OF THE YUD HEI VAV HEI, on the four elements OF FIRE, WIND, WATER AND EARTH, WHICH ARE THE SECRET OF CHESED AND GVURAH, TIFERET AND MALCHUT, THAT ARE IN YETZIRAH, WHICH ARE THE ASPECT OF YESOD. From them were created the four natural beings, NAMELY CHESED, GVURAH, TIFERET AND MALCHUT, THAT ARE IN THE WORLD OF ASIYAH. AND THE HOLY ONE, BLESSED BE HE, Himself brings water close to fire, WHICH IS THE SECRET OF THE TWO COLUMNS CHESED AND GVURAH AND ARE THE SECRET OF YUD-HEI, and of wind to the earth NAMELY TIFERET, THAT IS CALLED 'WIND,' TO MALCHUT, THAT IS CALLED 'EARTH,' THIS BEING THE SECRET OF VAV-HEI. And this is as it is written: "He makes peace in His high places" (Iyov 25:2). And so also, He brings together THE FOUR LIVING CREATURES OF THE ANGELS, NAMELY: Michael, who is considered mental water, with Gabriel, who is mental fire, WHICH IS THE SECRET OF RIGHT AND LEFT, AND THE PRINCIPLE OF YUD-HEI; and He also brings close Uriel, who is air, namely the mental wind, with Raphael, dust, who is mental earth, WHICH IS THE SECRET OF VAV-HEI. For the moment the Holy One, blessed be He, departs from among them, they have no strength.
224. You might suggest that since it is written that all the sacrifices are to Yud Hei Vav Hei, and ask how, therefore, it can be said that there is a separation of the letters OF YUD HEI VAV HEI, AND THAT THE SACRIFICE NOW COMES TO UNITE THEM. HE ANSWERS, This is said about those stages that were created and called by His name and not that they are He Himself, as it is written: "every one that is called by My name: for I have created him for My glory; I have formed him; yea, I have made him" (Yeshayah 43:7). And there are the four letters of Yud Hei Vav Hei in Atzilut, containing no separation nor cessation, for they are as fountains FOR ALL THE WORLDS, watering the trees. And regarding those that were created, NAMELY VIS-A-VIS THE YUD HEI VAV HEI ATTIRED IN THE WORLD OF CREATION, THE FOUR LETTERS OF ATZILUT are likened, the Yud to a head, the Vav to a body, while the two Hei's ARE LIKENED to ten fingers.
225. But the Cause of Causes, NAMELY THE ENDLESS LIGHT, BLESSED BE HE, who is over everything, who is called Yud Hei Vav Hei, THAT IS, ITS LIGHT IS ATTIRED IN THE YUD HEI VAV HEI, about Him it is said: "To whom then will you liken Me, that I should be equal? says the Holy One" (Yeshayah 40:25). "To whom then will you liken El, or what likeness will you compare to Him?" (Ibid. 18) "For I am Hashem, I do not change" (Malachi 3:6). The sins of the creatures BELOW do not touch Him, nor separate in Him the letter Yud from the letter Hei, nor the Vav from the Hei. For there is no separation in Him and it is said about Him, "nor shall evil dwell with You" (Tehilim 5:5). He rules over all and there is none who rules over Him. He comprehends all and there is none who comprehends Him. And He is not called by Yud Hei Vav Hei, nor by all the other names, but is known by His light that spreads over them, OVER THE LEVELS THAT ARE IN THE FOUR WORLDS, ATZILUT, BRIYAH, YETZIRAH AND ASIYAH. And when He departs from them, He has, of Himself, no name at all. "exceeding deep, who can find it?" (Kohelet 7:24).