234. Rabbi Chiya Raba went to the masters of the Mishnah to learn from them. He went to Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai, and saw a curtain OF FIRE that divided the house. AND RABBI SHIMON AND HIS STUDENTS WERE IN THE INSIDE OF THE CURTAIN. Rabbi Chiya was mystified and said, I will hear a word from his mouth from here, FROM OUTSIDE THE FIERY CURTAIN.
235. He heard THE VOICE OF ONE OF THE STUDENTS OF RABBI SHIMON, who said, "Make haste, my beloved, and be you like a gazelle or a young hart" (Shir Hashirim 8:14). All the longings that Yisrael had for the Holy One, blessed be He, were AS Rabbi Shimon said, the desire of Yisrael is that the Holy One, blessed be He, should not distance Himself, but rather run like a gazelle or a young deer.
236. Rabbi Shimon said, What is the reason that there is no animal in the world who does as the gazelle or young deer, which when he flees, goes a measure and turns his head to the place whence he left. He always turns his head backwards. So did Yisrael say, 'Master of the Universe, if we cause You to ascend from us, may it please You to flee like a gazelle or young deer who flees, and turns his head to the place that he left' - MEANING THE PLACE HE WAS BEFORE, FROM WHERE HE FLED. This is what is written, "And yet for all that, when they are in the land of their enemies, I will not cast them away, nor will I abhor them, to destroy them utterly" (Vayikra. 26:44). Another explanation is that the deer sleeps with one eye, while the other eye is awake. So did Yisrael say to the Holy One, blessed be He, 'Do as the deer; "Behold, the Guardian of Yisrael neither slumbers nor sleeps" (Tehilim 121:4).'
237. Rabbi Chiya heard and said, Those higher ones are occupied WITH TORAH inside the house and I sit outside. He wept. Rabbi Shimon heard and said, Assuredly, the Shechinah is outside, MEANING WITH RABBI CHIYA, who will go out AND BRING HIM IN. His son Rabbi Elazar said, If I am burned BY GOING OUT THROUGH THE FIERY CURTAIN, I will yet not be burned because the Shechinah is outside BY RABBI CHIYA. Let the Shechinah enter and the fire OF THE CURTAIN will be complete. Rabbi Elazar heard a voice that said, The pillars have not yet been supported, WHICH IS THE SECRET OF THE THREE COLUMNS, and the gates have still not been completed, MEANING THE FIFTY GATES OF BINAH, and he is now of the smaller spice trees of Eden, MEANING OF THE SMALLEST SOULS WHO ARE CALLED "SPICES." THEREFORE, Rabbi Elazar did not go out TO BRING HIM IN.
238. Rabbi Chiya sat, wept and sighed. He opened the discussion, saying: "Turn, my beloved, and be you like a gazelle or young hart" (Shir Hashirim 2:17), MEANING ACCORDING TO THE EXPLANATION THAT HE HEARD FROM RABBI SHIMON - THAT EVEN THOUGH THAT HE WAS FLEEING, HE TURNED HIS HEAD BACK AND DID NOT DISTANCE HIMSELF, AND THEN the gate of the curtain opened. BUT Rabbi Chiya did not enter. Rabbi Shimon raised his eyes AND SAW THAT THE ENTRANCE OF THE CURTAIN OPENED. He said, Apparently, permission has been granted to whoever is outside, yet we are inside, AND WE MUST NOT BRING HIM IN. Rabbi Shimon stood up and the fire moved from its place to the place of Rabbi Chiya. Rabbi Shimon said, The spark of the ingathering light HAS ALREADY SPREAD outside, TO RABBI CHIYA, yet I am here inside AND I MUST NOT BRING HIM IN. Rabbi Chiya's mouth became mute BECAUSE OF THE FIRE THAT SPREAD TOWARDS HIM.
239. As soon as RABBI CHIYA entered inside, he lowered his eyes and did not raise his head. Rabbi Shimon said to his son Rabbi Elazar, Pass your hand over the mouth OF RABBI CHIYA because he does not know about this, as he is not accustomed to it, AND DOES NOT KNOW WHAT TO DO. Rabbi Elazar arose and passed his hand over Rabbi Chiya's mouth. Rabbi Chiya opened his mouth and said, My eye has seen what I have not EVER seen and my stature has straightened, for I have never thought SO. It is good to die in the good golden fire that is burning.
240. In the place OF RABBI SHIMON BAR YOCHAI, which casts sparks to all sides, every single spark ascends to 370 Chariots. THEN, every single Chariot separates to thousands, and tens of thousands, until it reaches Atik Yomin that sits on a throne. And the throne trembles from it to 260 worlds.
241. Until RABBI SHIMON BAR YOCHAI reaches the place of Eden of the righteous, until THE SUPERIORITY OF RABBI SHIMON BAR YOCHAI is heard throughout the firmaments, those above and below at the same time are amazed and say, Is this Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai who shook everything up? Who can stand before him? This is Rabbi Shimon whose voice, at the moment he opens his mouth to start occupying himself with Torah, all the thrones, and all the firmaments, and all the Chariots hearken to, and also all those that praise their Master.
242. There is no one to open TO SING PRAISES, and there is no one to end HIS SONG OF PRAISE. THAT IS TO SAY, THOSE WHO ARE IN THE MIDDLE OF THEIR PRAISES DO NOT FINISH THEIR PRAISES, FOR they are all there TO HEARKEN TO THE VOICE OF RABBI SHIMON BAR YOCHAI. It comes to a point that no utterance is heard in all the heavens above and below. When Rabbi Shimon concludes his occupation with Torah, who has seen songs, who has seen joy of those that praise their Master, who has seen the voices that permeate all the heavens. (This is a fragment of a sentence - what happens when Rabbi Shimon concludes his occupation with Torah?) And because of Rabbi Shimon they all come, MEANING ALL THE SOULS AND ANGELS, and kneel and bow before their Master, raising up the secrets of the spices that are in Eden, WHICH IS THE SECRET OF THE ILLUMINATION OF CHOCHMAH, until Atik Yomin. And all this is because of Rabbi Shimon.
243. Rabbi Shimon opened his mouth and said, Six levels descended with Jacob to Egypt. THEY ARE CHESED, GVURAH, TIFERET, NETZACH, HOD AND YESOD. And each one EXPANDS TO ten, WHEN THEY ARE IN THE ILLUMINATION OF ZEIR ANPIN ALONE. THEN THEY ARE SIXTY, AND ARE one thousand WHEN THEY RECEIVE THE ILLUMINATION OF CHOCHMAH, WHICH IS THE SECRET OF THOUSANDS. THEN, THEY ARE SIXTY THOUSAND, WHICH IS MULTIPLIED BY ten thousand, WHEN THEY RECEIVE THE ILLUMINATION OF CHASSADIM FROM ATIK, MAKING SIX HUNDRED THOUSAND. And corresponding to them are six levels to Yisrael - BECAUSE FROM YISRAEL THEY DESCEND TO JACOB. Corresponding to them are six steps to the supernal throne, WHICH ARE CHESED, GVURAH AND TIFERET OF ZEIR ANPIN THAT INCLUDES NETZACH, HOD AND YESOD. And corresponding to them are the six steps to the lower throne, WHICH IS MALCHUT, WHICH ARE CHESED, GVURAH, TIFERET, NETZACH, HOD AND YESOD as is written, "The throne had six steps" (I Melachim 10:19). This is the meaning of, "I will cause you to increase like the plant of the field" (Yechezkel 16:7), WHICH IS THE FIRST GRADE; "AND YOU DID INCREASE," WHICH IS THE SECOND; "AND GROW BIG," THE THIRD; "AND YOU DID COME TO POSSESS GREAT ATTRACTIONS," THE FOURTH; "YOUR BREASTS WERE FIRM," THE FIFTH; "AND YOUR HAIR WAS GROWN," THE SIXTH. Correspondingly, it is written, "And the children of Yisrael were fruitful" (Shemot 1:7), WHICH IS THE FIRST; "and increased abundantly," THE SECOND; "and multiplied," THE THIRD; "and grew," THE FOURTH; "EXCEEDINGLY," THE FIFTH; AND "MIGHTY," THE SIXTH.