134. "And if his offering be a sacrifice of peace offering" (Vayikra 3:1). Rabbi Yehuda opened the discussion with the verse: "And Elohim said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters..." (Beresheet 1:6). Come and see: When the Holy One, blessed be He, created the universe, He created seven firmaments above, created seven lands below, seven seas, seven rivers, seven days, seven weeks, seven years, seven times, seven millennia in which the world exists. NAMELY, IT ENDURES FOR 6,000 YEARS AND FOR 1,000 IT IS IN RUINS. The Holy One, blessed be He, is to be found in every seventh OF ALL THAT IS MENTIONED ABOVE; NAMELY, IN THE SEVENTH MILLENNIUM, SEVENTH YEAR, AND SO ON.
135. There are seven firmaments above with stars and constellations in each, and attendants ministering in each and every firmament. In all those FIRMAMENTS, there are Chariots on Chariots that take on themselves the yoke of their Master's kingdom. In all the firmaments, there are Chariots and suns that are different from each other, the ones on the others, some with six wings and some with four wings, some with four faces and some with two faces, and some with one face. Some are of flames of fire, some of water and some of wind. Hence, it says, "Who makes the winds His messengers, the flames of fire His ministers" (Tehilim 104:4).
136. All the firmaments are on top of each other like onion shells clothing each other, some below and some above, FOR THOSE THAT ARE INSIDE ARE CONSIDERED TO BE BELOW AND THOSE ON THE OUTSIDE TO BE ABOVE. All firmaments tremble with the fear of their Master by whose decree they journey, by whose decree they stand still. Above them all is the Holy One, blessed be He, who carries everything in His might and strength. It is similar with the seven lands, all of which are inhabited, only that the first ones are higher and the latter are lower. The land of Yisrael is superior to them all and Jerusalem is superior to any inhabited place.
137. Our friends who dwell in the south saw in ancient books and in the book of Adam that all these lands are divided below in the same way as the firmaments above, namely the ones above the others and between each two lands a dividing firmament. Therefore, all lands are called by names, and among them are the Garden of Eden and Gehenom. There are creatures in them, different from each other, as above IN THE FIRMAMENTS. Some of them have two faces, some four faces and some have one. The appearance of the ones are not like THE APPEARANCE of the others.
138. You may wonder how all the inhabitants of the world issued from Adam. Did the first man descend into all these lands and beget children? And how many wives did he have?! HE ANSWERS, Adam dwells solely in the uppermost world called Universe (Heb. tevel), as we said, as it is written, "playing with the universe (Heb. tevel), His earth" (Mishlei 8:31). This universe cleaves to the firmament above where it holds to the supreme Name. Hence, it says, "And He will judge the universe in righteousness" (Tehilim 9:9), with righteousness indeed, WHICH IS MALCHUT CALLED RIGHTEOUSNESS. For this reason, the children of Adam are in the supernal land called Tevel and are superior to all, in the likeness of above, AS THE SUPERNAL MAN IS SUPERIOR TO ALL, AS WILL BE TALKED OF.
139. What is the reason THAT MAN BELOW IS IN THE LIKENESS OF ABOVE? It is that above all firmaments, there is a firmament superior to them all, on which sits the throne of the Holy One, blessed be He, as written, "The likeness of a throne, in appearance like a sapphire stone: and on the likeness of the throne was the likeness as the appearance of a man above on it" (Yechezkel 1:26). WHICH IS THE SECRET OF YUD HEI VAV HEI, FULLY SPELLED TO THE NUMERICAL VALUE OF MEM HEI (45), CORRELATING TO THE NUMERICAL VALUE OF ADAM. So here too, in this 'Tevel,' there is a king above all. Who is he? Man. That is not the case among the lower beings.
140. HE ASKS, Whence do the lower beings come from? HE REPLIES, From the vapors of earth and by the help of the firmament above come out creatures different in their appearance from each other. Some of them are clothed, some in shells like worms that are found on the earth, some of them with red, black and white shells, and some from any color. All creatures are like that, with a life span of ten years only!
141. Rav Hamnuna Saba (the elder) explains further in his book that the entire inhabited land rolls around like a ball, so that some are up and some are down. NAMELY, THE CREATURES AROUND THE GLOBE ARE OPPOSITE EACH OTHER AND THE SEVEN SECTIONS OF THE GLOBE ARE SEVEN LANDS. All the creatures OF SIX OF THE LANDS are different in their appearance according to the difference in the atmosphere in each place, and they live like any other man.
142. There is an inhabited place, so that when there is light on some - ON THAT SIDE OF THE GLOBE - it is dark for others ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE WORLD. THUS when it is day for one group, it is night for the others. There is an inhabited place where there is day only and no night, save for a little while. It has been said in ancient books and in the book of Adam THAT THERE ARE SEVEN LANDS, THE ONE BELOW THE OTHER, WITH A FIRMAMENT SEPARATING EACH AND EVERY LAND, and this is correct. NAMELY, HE DOES NOT DISAGREE WITH THEM IN HIS WORDS THAT THEY ARE ALL ONE GLOBE THAT IS DIVIDED INTO SEVEN PARTS, AS SHALL BE EXPLAINED. It is written as such in: "I will praiseYou; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvelous are Your works" (Tehilim 139:14) and "How manifold are Your works, Hashem" (Tehilim 104:24). All is therefore well, FOR BOTH ARE WORDS OF THE LIVING ELOHIM. WE MUST NOT QUESTION HOW BOTH INTERPRETATIONS CAN BE RIGHT, SEEING THAT THEY CONTRADICT EACH OTHER, because this secret has been transmitted to men of wisdom, and not to those who set AND DIVIDE NATURAL limits, and it is a deep mystery of the Torah.
143. Similarly, there exist creatures in the sea of different appearances. Hence, it says, "So is this great and wide sea, wherein are creeping things innumerable, both small and great beasts. There go the ships; there is the Leviathan..." (Tehilim 104:25). All are interdependent, all in the likeness of above. In all the worlds, none rules over everything but man, and the Holy One, blessed be He, rules over him.