Trumah: Chapter 87

The three watches of the night


Rabbi Shimon opens this discussion with the verse, "But none says, 'Where is Eloha my maker (lit. 'makers'), who gives songs in the night.'" By 'makers', we learn, the Scripture means that Eloha includes both Zeir Anpin and His court, Malchut. Malchut is constantly praising all night in order to receive His joyous supernal Light. All the stars are thankful and praise God during the entire time that they are visible in the sky, because the supernal angels who are appointed over the stars are all thankful and praise in watches during the three parts of the night. We next learn that in order to unite with their Master, the angels must push the Other Side outside, and they do this by bringing sleep to the inhabitants of the world, which attracts the Other Side downward. Evil spirits float around until midnight, we are told. Rabbi Shimon then tells of the angels that stand outside, spoken of in "Who makes the winds (spirits) His messengers," and the angels who are fire that stand inside, spoken of in "the flames of fire His ministers." The supernal angels praise God only after they have pushed the impurity outside. The master over all the companies of angels is the candle of David, who is Malchut. Next, Rabbi Shimon offers an alternative explanation for the opening verse, where the secret is that the spirit of man is composed of male and female, as in "And Elohim said, 'Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.'" Following this, Rabbi Elazar and Rabbi Aba arise at midnight to study Torah. At midnight the Holy One is aroused through love for the Congregation of Yisrael, and He sees the good deeds they performed that day, inhaling their sweet savor. Then the Light shines, the trees in the Garden of Eden sing praises, and the righteous experience there the delights of the World to Come.


The Light of the Creator travels though numerous dimensions before manifesting in our physical realm. A vast "communication" network runs throughout these dimensions, transporting this Light. This network incorporates what we commonly refer to as angels. Angels are the interface through which a man interacts with the awesome Light of the Creator. However, our senses of perception are, by design, restricted and limited. Much remains hidden from the thoughts of men and women.

Consequently, the force called "angel" remains unobservable to the naked eye and illogical to the rational mind. Like the unseen wind, however, its influence is very real. Positive actions of sharing, tolerance, and compassion ignite positive angels in our lives. Behavior that embodies selfishness, intolerance, hatred, and self-indulgence rouses negative forces of darkness.

David, we are told, ruled over all the angels. Thus, here we are given the power to govern all the angels, to have them do our bidding, so that we attract the Light of the Creator into our lives. We animate positive angels and bring forth countless blessings. We expel all negative angels and dissolve all blockages. The Light that illuminates after midnight, when two saintly sages engage in Torah study, shines here, endowing us with the power to triumph over the Other Side, especially during the evening hours when the influence of the dark force reaches its maximum power. This is the final end of darkness and all Creation rejoices in turn!