75. "And Jacob was left alone" (Beresheet 32:25). Rabbi Chiya opened the discussion with the verse, "No evil shall befall you, nor shall any plague come near your dwelling" (Tehilim 91:10). Come and behold, when the Holy One, blessed be He, created the world, He performed in each day the work appropriate for that day, as has been explained. It has been said that on the fourth day He created the lights, but the moon was created lacking, because it is a light that diminishes itself. For that reason, the word "lights" is spelled without the letter Vav, which leaves room for the spirits, demons, storm winds, devils, and all the Spirits of Defilement to exercise sway.
76. They all come to hover about the world and seduce MEN. They occupy deserted places, infertile fields NOT FIT FOR SOWING, and wasted deserts. They are all from the Side of Defilement. We have learned that the Spirit of Defilement comes from the corrupt serpent, WHICH IS LILIT. It is a very spirit of uncleanness that is appointed in the world to seduce people to it to him. Thus, the Evil Inclination gains mastery over the world.
77. It is appointed over people and dwells among them. It uses witchcraft and stealth to turn them from the ways of the Holy One, blessed be He, just as it seduced Adam and brought death to the world. So does it seduce men and cause them to be defiled.
78. Whoever wishes to be defiled draws upon himself that Spirit of Defilement and cleaves to it. Numerous SPIRITS OF DEFILEMENT await to defile him and make him unclean. They corrupt him in this world and in the World to Come, as has already been explained.
79. When a man strives to be purified, however, the Spirit of Defilement is subdued and loses its sway over him. Then, it is written, "No evil shall befall you, nor shall any plague come near your dwelling." Rabbi Yosi said, "No evil shall befall you," refers to Lilit and, "nor shall any plague come near your dwelling," refers to the other harmful demons. This has already been explained.
80. Rabbi Elazar said, Man has been warned not to venture out alone at night, especially when the moon was created lacking, AND DOES NOT FULLY SHINE. It has been explained that the Spirit of Defilement, an evil spirit, governs at that time. HE ASKS, Who is this evil spirit? HE ANSWERS, It is the evil serpent, and "the plague" is the rider of the serpent, SAMAEL. THUS, evil and plague are as one.
81. And yet we have learned that plague also refers to the plagues of those born to Adam. For all those years when Adam did not approach his wife, spirits of Defilement would come, conceive from him, and bear him offspring called the 'plagues of the sons of men.'
82. We learned that when man dreams, he has no control over his body; the body is silent, and the Spirit of Defilement comes to rest on him. Sometimes, impure female spirits come and draw him to them. Then they conceive from him and bear spirits and demons, who often look like men but without hair on their heads.
83. A man should protect himself from them with all his might. He should walk the paths of the Torah to avoid being defiled by them. For there is no one who sleeps in his bed at night who does not taste death. His soul leaves him, and when the body is left without the sacred soul, the Spirit of Defilement comes and hovers about him, and he becomes unclean. Thus, a man should not pass his hands over his eyes in the morning, because the Spirit of Defilement dwells on them.