Yitro: Chapter 12

And you shall behold the secret of secrets


Rabbi Shimon tells us of the secrets of the book of Adam and the secret book of King Solomon. He reveals that the Tree of Life is the book, so that the concealed wisdom was transmitted to Adam in the shapes and visages of people; Solomon inherited this wisdom and wrote it in his book, while Moses learned the wisdom from the Shechinah. Rabbi Shimon reiterates that the six aspects of man to be observed are the hair, the eyes, the nose, the lips, the face and the hands, especially the lines in the hands. He compares the skin that covers everything to the skin of the firmament, with which God created the stars and constellations, and says that the appearance of the stars and planets are ever-changing, as is the appearance of the skin of man. This is followed by another long description of the six aspects and how they manifest in people of different character. In the Mishnah we learn that when the time came to create man, the light was bestowed from Keter to Binah to Zeir Anpin, and thus brought forth the souls of man. The Ruach is the result of the mating of Zeir Anpin and Malchut, and it takes on hues from the sun and moon, from water and fire, wind and earth. Rabbi Shimon explains further about the creation of the body of man, and the Nefesh and the Ruach, and says that the actions of the Nefesh inside the body appear on the skin outside.