Rabbi Nehunya ben Hakanah, author of the Bahir,
achieved his high mystical state by separating from worldly
Perkei Avot of Nehunya ben Hakanah
Rabbi Nehunya ben Hakanah said: Whoever takes upon himself the yoke of
Torah, from him are removed the yoke of government and the yoke of worldly care;
but whoever casts off the yoke of the Torah, upon him are placed the yoke of
government and the yoke of worldly care.
The Bahir discusses that there
are 70 nations in the world each having a guardian angel. This is the gematria
of Gog vMagog –
. In that time all the nations of the
world rose up against
Berachot 7b on Gog and Magog
R. Johanan further said in the name of R. Simeon b. Yohai: A bad person in
a man's house is worse than the war of Gog and Magog. For it is said: A Psalm of
David, when he fled from Absalom his son, and it is written after that: Lord,
how many are mine adversaries become! Many are they that rise up against
But in regard to the war of Gog and Magog it is written: Why are the
nations in an uproar? And why do the peoples mutter in vain, but it is not
written: ‘How many are mine adversaries become!’
tradition held to a pantheon of 70 gods who served under El Elyon, G-d Most
High. Judaism purified the dross from the silver and saw that these gods were
no more than the angels who served the Lord Most
5-3: Seventy Date Palms, Seventy Angels, and
the Mighty Nation of Israel
(the teacher says) What is the meaning of the verse (Exodus 15:27),
“And they came to Elim, where there were twelve wells of water and seventy
date palms, and they encamped there by the water?” (the student asks)
What is so special about seventy date palms? In one small place there can be a
thousand. (the teacher responds) But [this teaches us that] they were worthy
of their counterpart. They are likened to date palms.
Elim in Hebrew is Elimah –
which contains the same letters as the name of G-d, Elohim –
At this point the children of Israel are heavenly counterparts. They are a
reflection or correspondence of the heavenly world. There is an element of
Israel passes the test of judgment to be elevated to
the level of a counterpart. In Exodus 15:26, G-d tells the children of Israel
to hearken to him, which they do and arrive at the place of
Hearkening to the Lord
And [Moses] said, If you will diligently listen to the voice of the Lord
your God, and will do that which is right in his sight, and will give ear to his
commandments, and keep all his statutes, [transitioning to the voice of G-d] I
will put none of these diseases upon you, which I have brought upon the
Egyptians; for I am the Lord that heals you.
The Bahir is the major
source text specifying the structure of the kabbalistic tree of life. For the
first time the ten sefirot are described in detailed symbolism explaining the
biblical source text for each quality. The juxtaposition of the sefirot Keter
and Daat (knowledge) where only one exists at a time has its source in the
Bahir. Furthermore the Bahir provides the source explanation for the descent
that precedes the ascent in advanced Kabbalah
Ascending Thought and Descending Vision
What is the meaning of the expression, “It rose in thought”?
Why do we not say that “it descended [in thought]”? Indeed we have
said, “One who gazes into the vision of the Chariot first descends and
then ascends.” We use the expression [of descent] there because we say,
“one who gazes into the vision (Tzafiyat) of the Chariot.” The
Aramaic translation of “vision” (Tzafiyat) is Sechuta [meaning a
covering, and alluding to the fact that one is looking down from above]. It is
also written, “And he called as a lion: ‘Upon the watchtower
(MiTzPeh), O God.’” Here, however we are speaking of thought, [and
therefore only speak of ascent]. For thought does not include any vision and
has no ending whatsoever. And anything that has no end or limit does not have
any descent. People therefore say, “Someone descended to the limit of his
friend’s knowledge.” One can arrive at the limit of a
person’s knowledge, but not at the limit of his thought.
realm of Keter there is no vision, no floor, no sky above. There is only
suspension in blackness where the will of G-d waits, waits for what? The will
of G-d awaits the thought that will manifest reality.
The Bahir teaches
in two genres. The first is a didactic conversation between a teacher and a
student. The second is by parable most often that of a king and his
There are about as many
versions of Sefer Yetzirah (SY) as there are scribes. Basically the kabbalistic
scribal process was never simply about copying the text, but the scribe’s
motivation was prophetic and hence, if so inspired in transcribing he would add
either comments or corrections. Hence, correspondences vary significantly in
versions. Moreover the length varies as the text develops from the Short, Long,
and the Saadyan rescension.
Distillation is part of the process of improving symbol association and
enhancement of meaning in all religious texts. It is not surprising that
scribes would desire to preserve their own discoveries found while transcribing.
Sefer Yetzirah 2:4
describes 231 gates that are the
Gates of Creation. The number of combinations (ignoring order) of all Hebrew
letters, taken two at a time, is 231. The procedure is to visual each pair in
ones mind using the alphabetical order as a mnemonic device. Like a family tree
the largest number of gates is at the top where we start and at the bottom there
is one gate, that of our self.
The 231 Gates In Meditative Visualization
אג אד אה או אז
אח אט אי אכ אל
אם אן אס אע אף
אץ אק אר אש
בד בה בו בז בח
בט בי בכ בל בם
בן בס בע בף בץ
בק בר בש בת
גה גו גז גח גט
גי גכ גל גם גן
גס גע גף גץ גק
דו דז דח דט די
דכ דל דם דן דס
דע דף דץ דק דר
הז הח הט הי הכ
הל הם הן הס הע
הף הץ הק הר הש
וח וט וי וכ ול
ום ון וס וע וף
וץ וק ור וש
זט זי זכ זל זם
זן זס זע זף זץ
זק זר זש
חי חכ חל חם חן
חס חע חף חץ חק
טכ טל טם טן טס
טע טף טץ טק טר
יל ים ין יס יע
יף יץ יק יר יש
כם כן כס כע כף
כץ כק כר כש
לן לס לע לף לץ
לק לר לש
מס מע מף מץ מק
נע נף נץ נק נר
סף סץ סק סר סש
עץ עק ער עש
פק פר פש
Eloah created all by these Gates of Creation. For us the Gates of
Creation illuminate forms with a light of
their essence. This is the
creation of a calf for food or a man for
of creation is to ascend in prayer with the Name of God from the upright
triangle and return with the creative flow – Shefa releasing from the
Figure 5-1: Creative Process
אג אד אה או אז
אח אט אי אכ אל
אם אן אס אע אף
אץ אק אר אש
בד בה בו בז בח
בט בי בכ בל בם
בן בס בע בף בץ
בק בר בש בת
גה גו גז גח גט
גי גכ גל גם גן
גס גע גף גץ גק
דו דז דח דט די
דכ דל דם דן דס
דע דף דץ דק דר
הז הח הט הי הכ
הל הם הן הס הע
הף הץ הק הר הש
וח וט וי וכ ול
ום ון וס וע וף
וץ וק ור וש
זט זי זכ זל זם
זן זס זע זף זץ
זק זר זש
חי חכ חל חם חן
חס חע חף חץ חק
טכ טל טם טן טס
טע טף טץ טק טר
יל ים ין יס יע
יף יץ יק יר יש
כם כן כס כע כף
כץ כק כר כש
לן לס לע לף לץ
לק לר לש
מס מע מף מץ מק
נע נף נץ נק נר
סף סץ סק סר סש
עץ עק ער עש
פק פר פש
‘Ascend with the Name of God
and return with the Shefa of the
of the form one seeks to
5.2.2 Gates of Reward
An alternative, but equally old reading of Sefer Yetzirah, records that
there are 221
Yoma 76a on the 221 Gates
It was taught: Issi b. Judah says: The manna which fell down for Israel
rose so high that all the kings of the east and the west could see it, as it is
said: [Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of my enemies. . .] my
cup runneth over. (Abaye said: It is evident from this that the cup of King
David in the future world will hold two hundred and twenty-one
, as it is
said: My cup is rewayah [overflowing], and this is the numerical value of
In the psalm, the gematria of
You placed oil upon my head and my cup overflows -
shin and mem of oil relate to fire and water, and the feeling of mystical
consciousness in the head. These are the 221 Gates of Reward.
To understand the Golem, we first turn to the source
text from Talmud Tractate Sanhedrin 65a-66a. The Golem subject is inserted in
the midst of superstition to distinguish that there is some supernatural reward
for those who serve the Almighty in purity.
Text 5-8: Sanhedrin on the Golem
MISHNAH. A BA'AL
WHO SPEAKS FROM HIS
ARMPIT. THE YIDDE'ONI [‘A WIZARD’] IS ONE WHO SPEAKS FROM HIS MOUTH.
THESE TWO ARE STONED; WHILST HE WHO ENQUIRES OF THEM TRANSGRESSES A FORMAL
... But what action is done by a Ba'al ob? — The knocking of his
Our Rabbis taught: A Ba'al ob is one who speaks from between the joints
of his body and his elbow joints. A yidde'oni is one who places the bone of a
yidoa’ in his mouth and it speaks of itself. An objection is raised: And
thy voice shall be, as of one that hath a familiar spirit, out of the ground:
surely that means that it speaks naturally? — No. It ascends and seats
itself between his joints and speaks. Come and hear: And the woman said unto
Saul, I saw a god-like form ascending out of the earth: [And Samuel said to Saul
. . .] surely that means that it spoke naturally? — No. It settled itself
between her joints and spoke.
Our Rabbis taught: Ba'al ob denotes both him who conjures up the dead
by means of soothsaying11 and one who consults a skull. What is the difference
between them? — The dead conjured up by soothsaying does not ascend
naturally [but feet first], nor on the Sabbath; whilst if consulted by its skull
it ascends naturally and on the Sabbath too. [You say,] it ascends: but whither
— does not the skull lie before him? — But say thus: It answers
naturally, and on the Sabbath too. And this question was asked by Turnusrufus of
R. Akiba: ‘Wherein does this day [the Sabbath] differ from any
other?’ — He replied: Wherein does one man differ from
another?’ — ‘Because my Lord [the Emperor] wishes it.’
‘The Sabbath too,’ R. Akiba rejoined, ‘then, is distinguished
because the Lord wishes so.’ He replied: ‘I ask this: Who tells you
that this day is the Sabbath?’ — He answered: ‘Let the river
Sabbation prove it; let the Ba'al ob prove it; let thy father's grave, whence no
smoke ascends on the Sabbath, prove it.’ He said to him: ‘You have
shamed, disgraced, and reviled him [by this proof].’
He who enquireth of an ob — is that not the same as one that
consulteth the dead? — As has been taught: Or that consulteth the dead:
this means one who starves himself and spends the night in a cemetery, so that
an unclean spirit [of a demon] may rest upon him [to enable him to foretell the
future]. And when R. Akiba reached this verse, he wept: If
one who starves himself that an unclean spirit may rest upon him has his wish
granted, he who fasts that the pure spirit [the Divine Presence] may rest upon
him — how much more should his desire be fulfilled! But alas! our sins
have driven it away from us, as it is written, But your iniquities have
separated between you and your
Behold, the Lord’s hand is not
shortened, that it cannot save;
nor is his ear heavy, that it cannot
But your iniquities have separated -
between you and your God,
and your sins have hidden his face from
you, that he will not hear.
Raba said: If the righteous desired it, they could
[by living a life of absolute purity] be
creators, for it is written,
But your iniquities have distinguished between etc. Rabbah created a man, and
sent him to R. Zera. R. Zera spoke to him, but received no answer. Thereupon he
said unto him: ‘Thou art a creature of the magicians. Return to thy
R. Hanina and R. Oshaia spent every Sabbath eve in
studying the ‘Book of Creation’, by means of which they created a
third-grown calf and ate
Our Rabbis taught: Me'onen — R. Simeon said: That is one who
applies the semen of seven male species to his eyes [in order to perform
witchcraft]. The Sages say: It is one who holds people's eyes. R. Akiba said: It
is one who calculates the times and hours, saying, Today is propitious for
setting forth; tomorrow for making purchases; the wheat ripening on the eve of
the seventh year is generally sound; let the beans be pulled up [instead of
being harvested in the usual manner] to save them from becoming
Our Rabbis taught: A Menahesh is one who says: So and so's bread has
fallen out of his hand; his staff has fallen out of his hand; his son called
after him; a raven screamed after him, a deer has crossed his path; a serpent
came at his right hand or a fox at his left; do not commence with me; it is
morning; it is new moon; it is the conclusion of the Sabbath.
Our Rabbis taught: Ye shall not use enchantments nor observe times.
This refers to those who practice enchantment by means of weasels, birds, and
The Maharal describes the following
characteristics of the Golem.
- The golem has a pure soul.
- The golem has no physical lusts, hence he does not sin; thus, the
Golem is immune from sickness.
- The golem is not obligated to the commandments of Torah and thus is less
qualified than a Jewish woman to be counted in a minyan.
practice of making a golem is the meditative exercise of drawing down a pure
soul or creating a pure soul within oneself. In order to do this one must
purify oneself of impure thoughts or emotions. Removing hametz or leaven on
Passover from one’s possessions is the
Rabbi Isaac of Acco wrote the following on
Rabbi Isaac of Acco on the Golem
Once ... I, the young, was sitting in the company of
advanced students, lovers of wisdom. One of them (one of the
) opened his mouth and asked me as follows:
“What is the difference between the Creation (Beriyah)
and Formation (Yetzirah)?”
him, “Why don’t you also ask why Abraham, our ancestor, called his
book “Yetzirah”, which consists of wondrous deeds:
the means of which Rava created a man
- For R. Hiyya and R. Hoshaiyah a three-year old calf has
been created each time before the entrance of the Sabbath, and they ate it
during the day of Sabbath.
- And Jeremiah and Ben Sira created from it a speaking,
wise and intelligent man, as I have explained above.
Why didn’t he (Abraham) call it the book of
And he (the student) was not able (to answer me) and
none of them answered me, since they did not know what it was. But I, the
while I was speaking it, I saw the correct reason, which is
You already know the secret of the Yod of the
and the secret of the Bet. Since the majority of men have no power to endow a
speaking soul, let
alone an intellective
upon the matter shaped either in the form of an animal or a beast or a bird or a
fish or a reptile, nor in the form of man with the Sefer
Instead they endow the form with an
animal and appetitive
as our sages said, “Rava created a man and he sent it to R. Zeira”
etc. The book was called Sefer Yetzirah but not the ‘Book of
Beriyah’ for the reason that the animal and appetitive soul, which
perishes with the death of the body when the combination of the four elements is
undone, stems from the intermediary world, which is the Yod of
But the secret of the
speaking intellective soul is from the supernal world, which is Bet in
By saying the majority and not all, I intended to
exclude Jeremiah the Prophet, the disciple of Moses our master, peace on him,
and Ben Sira and all those similar to them, few in number, who attained a divine
perfection, to create an animal, speaking, intellective (being).
And if you shall argue that all the prophets ... were
the disciples of Moses, our master, peace on him, so why did you mention
Jeremiah in particular a disciple of Moses? The answer is that you must pursue
the Kabbalists so that they may explain to you the secret of the verse,
“The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet from among your own
people, like myself; him you shall heed,” and then you will certainly
understand my intention.
However, concerning Jeremiah and Ben
Sira alone have I received (a tradition)
that they have drawn downward a
from their root of Bet of
‘ABYa’ that is the Aleph of
out of their
great degree and the perfection of their soul,
being able to (perform) this
The reason is that their degree attained to Metatron,
the Prince of the Face, and San(dalfon), about whom we say in the blessing of
the Ancestors, “And You bring a deliverer on the sons of their
sons”, and the wise will understand.
The “Light of the Eyes” interprets
the creation story showing the analogy with the creation of a
The span of existence
of ‘formation – Yetzirah’ is not forever while that of
‘emanation – Atzulut’ and ‘creation –
Beriyah’ have a spiritual length to their
Meirat Enayim on Span of Existence of Life of Creation
The secret of creation of man (refers to) the speculative soul [haneshamah
ha-hakhamah], which stands forever. And the secret of his formation (refers to)
the animal soul, which does not stand forever ... And emanation (Atzulut) and
creation (Beriyah) are more spiritual than formation
Lower Golem is that of Asiyah and Yetzirah versus the higher Golem who is drawn
from Beriyah and Atzulut. Isaac of Acco’s very address to the
‘Advanced Students’ may have been an exercise in the creation of a
Higher Golem. He attempts to draw from Beriyah a higher speaking soul and
implant that spiritual understanding within the bodies of the ‘Advanced
Students’. What is the nature of that soul? This is a soul that seeks
after the Kabbalists, the prophets of their generation to draw close to G-d, to
pursue the word of G-d and to express the word of G-d. Let us conclude that
the creation of Higher Golems is the process of drawing higher souls into human
mystery remains on the creation of Lower Golems. They are the product of a
meditation to draw down animal and appetitive
and Asiyah. This is the
cow that R. Hanina and R. Oshaia made that fed them dinner or filled their
“R. Hanina and R. Oshaia spent every Sabbath eve in studying the
‘Book of Creation’,24
of which they created a third-grown calf,25
(24) The Book of Creation,
Heb. Sefer Yeziroh, is the title of two esoteric books. The older, referred to
here, was a thaumaturgical work popular in the Talmudic period. It was also
known as Hilkoth Yezirah (Laws of Creation), and is so called in the same story
quoted on 67b. Rashi there states that the creation was performed by means of
mystic combinations of the Divine Name, which does not come under the ban of
witchcraft. Its basic idea is that the Creation was accomplished by means of the
power inherent in those letters (Cf. Rab's saying: ‘Bezalel knew how to
combine the letters by which heaven and earth were created’. Ber. 55a. Cf.
also Enoch LXI, 3 et seq.; Prayer of Manasseh: Ecc. R. III, 11 on the magic
power of the letters of the Divine Name), and that this same power could be
utilised in further creation. The work was ascribed to Abraham, which fact
indicates an old tradition, and the possible antiquity of the book itself. It
has affinities with Babylonian, Egyptian, and Hellenic mysticism and its origin
has been placed in the second century B.C.E., when such a combination of
influences might be expected. It is noteworthy that Raba's statement above,
though not mentioning the Sefer Yezirah, insists on freedom from sin as a
prerequisite of creation by man, v. J.E., XII, 602.
(25) (I.e., a calf that
has reached one third of its full growth; others interpret: (i) in its third
year; (ii) third born, fat].
The Genesis creation story is an
analogy for the creation of a human golem by God forming man from the
Golem making endows the physical with the spiritual, as Hashem breathed life
into man. The maker reforms the world around according to the ideal images
that once existed in the Garden of Eden. Hence, to make a Golem is the process
of drawing down souls and binding them in the same manner as G-d, our Creator
did ‘In the Beginning’—as He does every day with the birth of
each new living thing.
While Levi Yitzhak of
Berditchev would draw a person to the side of good by seeing the good spark
within, a Golem maker would place that spark within by reshaping the form of his
Ascensions on High on the Golem
I propose interpreting some of the Heikhalot discussions, in a sort of
In other words,
in Heikhalot literature the concomitant presence of the samer person in two
places seems to be a crucial issue. So, for example, Rabbi Nehuniyah ben
ha-Kanah is described as sitting in the special posture of Elijah in the lower
world, surrounded by his disciples, apparently in a lethargic state. At the
same time, he is portrayed as sitting and gazing upon the divine chariot on
high. I would like to emphasize the use of the verb sit—Yoshev: the
Rabbi is reprsened as sitting in two different places as the same time. This
observation of the double presence of the mystic in Heikhalot literature may be
a clue to understanding the whole phenomenon of the ascent to the Merkavah. It
is neither an ascent of the soul nor a corporeal ascent (It
is an ascent of the soul while also a corporeal presence)
; it combines
both by the assumption that the spiritual body of the mystic is the entity that
undertakes the celestial journey, while the corporeal body remains in a special
posgture in the terrestrial world. I cannot elaborate here upon the possi ble
implications of such a proposal for the understanding of Heikhalot literature.
For the time being, it is sufficient to remark that the assumption of a double
presence in a Heikhalot text connected to the term Golem—which in many
cases since the Middle Ages means “an artificial
anthropoid”—may have something to do with the concept of a spiritual
body (—may have something to do with the corporeal body
remaining after the astral ascension)
During astral projection, a mystic’s corporeal body becomes an
automaton that moves by the spiritual will of its master while in a trance
stance. While the Golem usually does not talk, the mystic may bring a voice
down into the body although the body is detached from the soul. The speaking
voice is connected on high and directed by the spirit.
Similar to the
Golem is the concept of the Teraphim –
which has a gematria of 730. The 7 represents the 7 Midos while the 3 denotes
the crowns, so the 10 sefirot or the tzelem of G-d are represented. The x10
factor provides the potential for living manifestation. This is why the
Teraphim were so enticing. But like all living creatures, their voices were
bears the seal of G-d that is emet -
The world could not
exist without Truth. Nevertheless, one is permitted to hide the truth to avoid
others from taking advantage of another or committing lashon harah –
slander. Since emet contains the suffix, ‘death’, we know that
death is ultimately the truth of our existence. In this regard, death is given
significance, even as life seems to continue unchanged. The Golem is like the
mais – the body of a deceased before it is buried. He rises to defend the
people of Israel as our avot – fathers are defending us from their graves.
As a king has a seal to confirm his decree, God’s seal is emet –
truth. We do not despair even in mourning as we recite the Kaddish, a prayer of
lauding and a testimony of His truth even in death. The will of the deceased
is to care for their loved ones left behind.
5.2.4 The Seven Double
The Twelve Elemental Letters correspond with the Twelve Monthly
Constellations. The associations in the Sefer Yetzirah with the Seven Double
Letters vary between the Gra and Raavad versions. Dissolving the paradox,
there are not only seven planets and they were all fashioned on Wednesday, but
the qualities that associate are in order of their spiritual distance that is
also their sidereal
5-1: Corrected order of the Seven Planets
formed by the Seven Double Letters
Kindness, path to wisdom
Wisdom ↔ Folly
Wealth ↔ Poverty
Seed ↔ Desolation
Healing, life, victory
Life ↔ Death
Righteousness, Peace, War
Peace ↔ War
Rest, Grace, cessation
Grace ↔ Ugliness
The BeGeD CaPaRoT –
– the Garment of Atonement is
Creation. Ultimately we are born to improve in the physical world for eternal
life in the World to Come. Creation is the gift and means of Atonement. While
in the microcosm described above, the qualities of the seven planets have a
strong influence upon the Earth; in the macrocosm described below; the Seven
Double Letters are the creative force behind the Seven Garments of
5-2: The Seven Garments of Atonement
Light, darkness and the Angel of Death
“In the beginning –
he is the Garment of Light and Darkness upon us.
Sky, clouds, oceans Gehenom and higher
Gimmel extends the abundance of space and oceans and Gevurah draws their
boundaries. She is the Garment of the Sky and Clouds over us, and the Oceans
beside and below us.
Land, trees, herbs, and the Garden of
The land, trees, and herbs are the Splendor of creation and the center of
beauty, knowledge and the seed of reproduction. He is the Garment of the Land,
Trees, and Herbs around us.
Sun, Moon, and Stars
The colors of Netzah are the upper heavens, the placement of the Sun, Moon,
and Stars. He is the source of healing, life, and victory. The letter Caph is
the macrocosmic creative force of all planets. In the microcosm Caph forms the
Sun in particular, the source of the other planets. He is the Garment of the
Sun, Moon, and Stars that illuminate and inspire us.
Sea creatures, birds Leviathan and lower
Hod has the colors of the lower heavens. She is the Garment of the Sea
Creatures, Leviathan, Birds and Lower Angels that bring us to an accounting of
Land animals, insects, man harmful spirits – the
ghosts and demons
Resh created the Garment of the Land, Animals, Insects, and Man. She is
the source of righteousness, peace, and war.
Shabbat – day of rest
Tav created the Garment of Shabbat that is a place of Grace. She brings
rest and spiritual reward.
The Sefer Raziel provides some of the keys to unlock the Sefer Yetzirah.
Figure 5-2: Twelve Constellations
The Seven Planets of major influence upon the Earth are depicted in
their spiritual distances below with the order from closest to furthest being,
the Moon, Mercury, Venus, Sun, Mars, Jupiter, and
5-3: Seven Planets and Earth
The OaKYaNoS –
– the ‘ocean’ is also understood as the Sea of (covering) the
. This word seems to be from the
The position of the
planets was based on the sidereal period of the planet around the Earth. The
sidereal period is the time a planet takes to return to the same background of
stars. From this perspective, the order of planets with lengthening periods is
the Moon, Mercury, Venus, Sun, Mars, Jupiter, and
The Zohar, illustrious light, is a work of Kabbalah. The major core is a
commentary on the Five Books of Moses similar to the Midrash but instead, with
an emphasis on mystical interpretations of the text. Three other works of the
Zohar describe the G-dhead, and the physical form that corresponds to the crown
of behavior of man in the image of
The following example text traces the meaning of the ‘beard’ of G-d
from its physical form to the thirteen gates of repentance.
5.4.1 Thirteen Springs of Forgiveness
The following translations are difficult to follow.
Book of Concealed Mystery
Through thirteen springs are the fountains distributed. Four are separate
but joined together, nine flow upon the body and encircle the garden. The
ornamentation begins at the gate of the ears. It descends in beauty to the
beginning of the lips; from the beginning of the ears to the beginning of the
lips. There exists a path beneath the nostrils, in order that He may seek to
pass over transgression; Proverbs 19:11 “And it is his glory to pass over
Beneath the lips the beard goes into another beginning ...
The lips are free on every side. Blessed is he who shall become the
receiver of their kisses. In that influence, stream down thirteen drops of pure
balm. In this influence, all things exist and are concealed.
At that time, when the seventh month draweth nigh, those months shall be
found to be thirteen (for in the Codex, so often said to be correct, the word
twelve is expunged to show it to be a year of thirteen months, according to the
number of those thirteen divisions of influence) in the supernal world, and the
thirteen gates of mercy are opened. At that time: Isaiah, 40:6 “Seek ye
the Lord while He can be
year of the Hebrew calendar includes a 2nd
month of Adar called Adar
Sheni. In this particular year there are thirteen months and they afford and
extra month to understand the concepts of the
Idra Rabba Kaddisha
It is said in the ‘Book of Concealed Mystery’: That beard, the
truth of all (truths), proceeds from the place of the ears, and descends around
the mouth of the Holy One; and descends and ascends covering the place of
fragrance (the cheeks); white with ornament and it descends in equilibrium and
furnishes a covering even unto the midst of the breast.
That is the beard of adornment, true and perfect, from which flow down
thirteen fountains, scattering the most precious balm of
thirteen parts of the beard are thirteen aspects in the sefira of Keter in the
world of Atzilut. They correspond to the primal ratzon, will or desire of
Mathers writes in his commentary on this
The “thirteen divisions of the influence in the supernal world”
are of course those thirteen parts of the beard of Macroprosopus considered in
the sense of Atziloth, the archetypal world, the habitation of the pure
Sephiroth alone: “Seek ye the Lord while he may be found.”
would like for a moment to trace the origins of this Zohar text to the prophet
Micah. Moshe Cordovero writes in his Tomer
It is proper for man to emulate his Creator, for then he will attain the
secret of the Supernal Form in both image (tzelem) and likeness (demut). For if
a person’s physical form reflects the Supernal Form, yet his actions do
not, he falsifies his stature. People will say of him, “A handsome form
whose deeds are ugly.” For the essential aspect of the Supernal
‘Form’ and ‘Likeness’ is that they are the deeds of the
Holy one, Blessed Be He. Therefore, what good is it for a person to reflect the
Supernal Form in physical form only if his deeds do not imitate those of his
Creator? Thus, it is proper that man’s actions imitate the Thirteen
Supernal Attributes of Mercy – the functions of the sefirah of keter
– hinted at in these verses:
Who is G-d like Thee, who pardons iniquity and forgives
the transgression of the remnant of His heritage? He does not maintain His
anger forever, for He delights in kindness. He will again show us compassion,
He will vanquish our iniquities, and Thou will cast all their sins into the
depths of the sea. Show faithfulness to Yaakov, kindness to Avraham, which You
have sworn to our fathers from days of old.
Consequently, it is proper that these Thirteen Attributes, which we will
now explain, should also be found in man.
These Thirteen Attributes
reveal the absolute desire of Hashem to forgive even above wisdom (Hochmah),
understanding (Binah), and knowledge (Daat). Why is forgiveness in the highest
of all places? Because all heavenly doors are opened after a person chooses to
return to G-d and G-d accepts the repentance and forgives. How do we now that
G-d will accept the repentance? Hence we learn that forgiveness is the highest
of all G-d’s desires (Keter). What are the doors that are opened? These
are the Gates of Repentance, which reveal all the heavens as we learn from Moshe
For how shall it be known that thy people have found grace in thy sight?
By going with us (Lord) we are distinguished.
And the Lord said unto Moses, I will do this thing also that thou hast
spoken: for you have found grace in my sight, and I know you by name.
Opening the Gates of Repentance
And he said, I beseech thee, show me thy glory. And He said, I will make
all my goodness pass before thee, and I will proclaim the name of the Lord
before thee; and I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and I will show
mercy to whom I will show mercy.
The Thirteen Attributes of Forgiveness
And the Lord descended in the cloud and stood with him there, and
proclaimed the name of the Lord. And the Lord passed by before him, and
O G-d, my G-d, mighty, merciful and
long suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth,
keeping mercy for thousands (of
forgiving iniquity and transgression and
and that will by no means clear the
visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the
and upon the children’s children
unto the third and to the fourth
And Moses made haste, and bowed his head toward the earth, and worshipped.
And he said, if now I have found grace in thy sight, O Lord, let my Lord, I pray
thee, go among us; for it is a stubborn people; and pardon our iniquity and our
sin, and take us for thine inheritance.
(Exodus 33:13 – 34:7)
The Hebrew word for stubborn is
stubbornness has kept the Jewish people and will bring her back to
stubbornness, we will never forget Jerusalem, because of stubbornness, we will
never forget G-d, because of stubbornness we will never forget our family and
the land that we love.
Furthermore, the thirteen attributes from Exodus
overlap the thirteen attributes from Micah. The Tashlich service for Rosh
Hashanah contains these
Tashlich is a service for cleansing of sins recited before a living body of
describes his vision of the G-dhead. This vision is the basis for the G-dhead
and the River of Fire that descends from the beard. The River of Fire that
descends from absolute mercy eradicates sin above and beyond even repentance.
The River of Fire reveals the sovereignty of G-d’s mercy to purge sin from
I beheld till the thrones were cast down, and the
Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and the hair of his
head like the pure wool: his throne was like the fiery flame, and his wheels as
A fiery stream (Nahar DiNar) issued and came forth from before him:
thousand thousands ministered unto him, and ten thousand times ten thousand
stood before him: the judgment was set, and the books were opened.
I beheld then because of the voice of the great words which the horn spake:
I beheld even till the beast was slain, and his body destroyed, and given to the
As concerning the rest of the beasts, they had their dominion taken away:
yet their lives were prolonged for a season and time.
I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like a son of man came with
the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near
And there was given him dominion and glory, and a kingdom, that all people,
nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting
dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be
And the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdoms under the
whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the holy ones of the most High,
whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey
Hitherto is the end of the matter. ...
The Zohar Great Holy Assembly
And it is said that a man can be known by his hair after the age of forty
years, whether he is dominated by rigor or mercy, some even maintaining that the
character of a youth can be told by his hair, his beard and eyebrows. The curls
of the hair of the Ancient One hang in pure order, like pure wool,...
After Rabbi Moshe de Leon discovered the Zohar in the 13th
century, the Arizal contemplated its ideas in the 16th century. The
Arizal’s concepts of the sparks of creation were elaborated from the
Zohar on the Nahar Dinar:
The third celestial sphere is pervaded and filled with fire and flames. In
it the fiery river Nahar dinur takes its rise and flows into Gehenna,
overwhelming and engulphing in its course those mortals whose lives on earth
were given up and addicted to evil and wrongdoing. Over these are placed
destroying and tormenting angels, also accusing angels who, however, have no
power or influence over Israel when it repents and does what is just and right.
The abode of their chief is on the left side of this sphere in which darkness
prevails, as it is written, 'and darkness was upon the face of the waters.' It
is also the abode of Samael, the angel of darkness, the great
10 A fiery stream issued and came forth from before
him; thousand thousands ministered unto him, and ten thousand times ten thousand
stood before him; the judgment was set, and the books were opened.
Dinar means fiery and associates with the judgement from Din. The
sefira of Gevurah has both as a metaphor. Daniel 7:10 can also be read,
“A stream of judgement came forth from before him; thousand thousands
ministered unto him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him; the
judgment was set, and the books were opened.”
5.4.2 Veracity of the Author
Aryeh Kaplan on the Veracity of the Zohar
"Rabbi Shimon's school survived for many years, during which minor
additions were made to the Zoharic literature. For over a thousand years,
this body of literature consisted of volumes of notes, restricted to a very
small secret society. With the final disbandment of this society, the
manuscripts were hidden in a vault, and were not uncovered until the Thirteenth
Century. They finally came to the hands of Rabbi Moshe de Leon, one of the
most prominent Kabbalists of that time, and he finally edited and published them
in the 1290's. Enough was known of the Zoharic literature by the
Kabbalists of that generation to recognize it as being authentic, and it was
accepted by them with virtually no controversy.
There has always been some question as to the authenticity of the Zohar,
especially among secular historians and opponents of the Kabbalah. Some
even claim that Rabbi Moshe de Leon was its actual author. The main basis
of this allegation is an account by another prominent Kabbalist of the time,
Rabbi Isaac of Acco. He writes that he went to visit Rabbi Moshe to see
the original manuscripts of the Zohar, but by the time he arrived, he found that
Rabbi Moshe had passed away. He was informed that the manuscripts had
never existed, and that Rabbi Moshe himself was the actual author of the
Zohar. It is upon this account that most of the speculation regarding
medieval authorship of the Zohar is based.
There are, however, strong questions regarding the
veracity of the story told to Rabbi Isaac. It is well known that the
ignorant often destroyed manuscripts, or on occasion, sold them so that the
parchment could be used. It is quite possible that the wife did this, and
then embarrassed at not having them, claimed that they never existed.
What is most important, however, is the fact that Rabbi Isaac of Acco
investigated the matter, determined to ascertain the truth. Although the
exact results of his investigation are not known, it is obvious that he
eventually accepted the authenticity of the
"—Meditation and Kabbalah pp.
Quoting the Zohar, Rabbi Isaac of Acco wrote: M&K
These are the words of Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai, and it is forbidden to
depart from them. They are the living words of God ... sweeter than
Also in Otzar Chaim:
Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai clearly realized that the supernal spiritual Forces
are very jealous of those who engage in the Workings of Creation, which is
natural wisdom, and in the Workings of the Merkavah, which is divine
wisdom. Together with his son Rabbi Eliezer and the ten sages who were
with them in the cave (!) he therefore wrote the Zohar in Aramai rather than in
Hebrew [since these forces do not understand Aramaic"]
5.4.3 Job atoning for
Soncino Zohar, Bemidbar, Section 3, Page 23la
R. Judah said: ‘Pray tell us some of your fine ideas on the New
Year.’ R. Simeon thereupon discoursed on the verse: “And it fell on
a day, and the sons of God came”, etc. (Job I, 6). ‘The expression,
“And it fell on a day”,’ he said, ‘always refers to a
day on which there is trouble, here, the New Year. The “sons of God”
are the great Beth Din, the seventy Chieftains who always surround the King.
“To stand before the Lord”: this indicates that sentence is first
passed on those who do not heed the honor of the Holy Name to save it from being
profaned in the world. The ancient pillars of the world were divided in opinion
in regard to Job, some holding that he was of the saints of the Gentiles, and
some that he was of the saints of Israel, and that he was smitten to make
atonement for the sins of the world. On that day of New Year seventy seats are
set for hearing the judgment of the world, some inclining to the right to acquit
and some to the left to condemn.
From the Zohar we see that G-d can turn a person’s suffering into
atonement for others and without death.
Specifically, Zohar III 231a,
comments on Job as a living atonement:
“The early pillars of the world were divided.
One maintained that Job belonged to the righteous Gentiles.
Another said that he was one of the pious of Israel
suffered in order to atone for the sins of the world.”
While this theology is not directly stated in the Tanach, God’s mercy
for the sufferer to find meaning in his/her suffering is an explanation.
This explanation cannot apply to Christianity because Christianity’s focus
is that Jesus had to die for the sins of humanity while here G-d acquiesces to
the sufferer for the sufferer’s sake and not humanity. There
is no requirement of death/sacrifice/blood letting and yet there is
But is the Zohar really authentic to the Torah
here. Self-sacrifice/vicarious atonement seems to be struck down in the
Torah. In the major case of Moses, G-d did not accept a similar
offer: (Exodus 32)
31. And Moses returned to the Lord, and said, Oh, this people have sinned a
great sin, and have made them gods of gold.
32. Yet now, if you will forgive their sin; and if not, blot me, I beg
you, from your book, which you have written.
33. And the Lord said to Moses, Whoever has sinned against me, him will
I blot from my book.
34. Therefore now go, lead the people to the place about which I have
spoken to you; behold, my Angel shall go before you; nevertheless in the day
when I punish I will punish their sin upon them.
35. And the Lord plagued the people, because they made the calf, which
The Torah in numerous places does not allow vicarious
atonement, even when Moses offers to be blotted or punished in the place of the
people! Moreover the Christian idea that we are all sinners needing grace
is pushed aside here as G-d can see the true station of everyone and the
relative significance of sin, “Whoever has sinned against me, him will I
blot from my book.” G-d is not referring to everyone
As for Isaiah 53 these passages are not about self-sacrifice,
but one who suffered while being taken into captivity for the sins of the whole
nation though he was innocent. Isaiah 53 is more about inspiring the
guilty to repentance – Tshuvah by seeing the suffering of the
innocent! This is also the Holocaust effect that led to the creation
of the State of Israel. The Jews have been the suffering servant of the
world on too numerous an occasion.
Nevertheless, returning to the
singular account in the Zohar of Job atoning for the world, a few mystics and
Hasidic groups adopted the principle of vicarious atonement through
suffering. Suffering is another form of living
Returning to the subject of messiah, I recall:
Isaiah 45, which shows the relationship between the prophet and the
messiah. Before the messiah can be recognized, there must be a prophet to
Thus says the Lord to His Messiah to Coresh (Cyrus) whose
right hand I have strengthened.
to subdue nations before him; and I will
loose the loins of kings, to open before him doors and gates;
and the gates
shall not be closed; I will go before you, and make the hilly places
I will break in pieces the gates of bronze, and cut in sunder the
bars of iron;
And I will give you the treasures of darkness, and hidden
riches of secret places,
that you may know that I, the Lord, who call you by
your name, am the God of Israel.
For Jacob my servant’s sake, and
Israel my elect, I have called you by your name;
I have surnamed you, though
you have not known me.
I am the Lord, and there is no one else, there is no
God beside me;
I girded you, though you have not known me;
That they may
know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside
I am the Lord, and there is no one else.
I form the light, and create
darkness; I make peace, and create evil; I the Lord do all these
Shower, O heavens, from above, and let the skies pour down
righteousness; let the earth open,
and let them bring forth salvation, and
let righteousness spring up also; I, the Lord, have created it.
Woe to him
who strives with his Maker! Let the potsherd strive with the potsherds of the
Shall the clay say to him who fashions it, What do you make? or your
work, He has no hands?
Woe to him who says to his father, What are you
begetting? or to the woman, With what are you in labor?
Thus says the Lord,
the Holy One of Israel, and his Maker, Ask me of things to come concerning my
and concerning the work of my hands command me.
I have made the
earth, and created man upon it; I, my own hands, have stretched out the
and all their host have I commanded.
I have raised him up
in righteousness, and I will direct all his ways; he shall build my city,
and he shall let go my captives, not for price nor reward, says the Lord of
Thus says the Lord, The labor of Egypt, and the merchandise of Kush
and of the Sebaim, men of stature,
shall come over to you, and they
shall be yours; they shall come after you; in chains they shall come
and they shall fall down to you, they shall make supplication
to you, saying, surely God is in you;
and there is no one else
zero gods –
Truly you are a God
who hides yourself, O God of Israel, who saves them.
They shall be ashamed,
and also confounded, all of them;
they shall go to confusion together those
who are makers of idols.
But Israel shall be saved in the Lord with an
you shall not be ashamed nor confounded to all
For thus says the Lord who created the heavens; God himself who
formed the earth and made it;
he has established it, he created it not in
vain, he formed it to be inhabited;
I am the Lord; and there is no one
I have not spoken in secret, in a dark place of the earth; I do not say
to the seed of Jacob,
Seek me in vain; I, the Lord, speak righteousness, I
declare things that are right.
Assemble yourselves and come; draw near
together, you of the nations who have escaped;
they have no knowledge those
who carry the wood of their carved idols,
and pray to a god who cannot
Declare, and bring them near; yes, let them take counsel together;
Who has declared this from ancient time? Who has told it from that time? Did
not I the Lord?
And there is no other God beside me; a just God and a
savior; there is none beside me.
Look to me, and be saved, all the ends of
the earth; for I am God, and there is no one else.
I have sworn by myself, a
word of righteousness is gone out of my mouth, and shall not be reversed,
That to me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear.
said to me, in the Lord have I righteousness and strength; to him shall men
and all who are incensed against him shall be ashamed.
In the Lord
shall all the seed of Israel be justified, and shall glory.
G-d is our savior, our only True savior. If he should send
Cyrus to help the Israelites return to Israel, this does not make Cyrus a deity
to be worshipped, although some made this error as Isaiah points out above in
the boldface. Is this not the error that Christians make, compounded by
misunderstanding the word ‘moshia’? Savior in Hebrew is
‘moshia’, which refers to being saved from physical
oppression. Hebrew doesn’t really have a word for salvation, because
in the Torah salvation is not by grace, but by hard work and
responsibility. This is not to say that G-d isn’t merciful, but one
makes an effort to change to be better.
The messiah’s role is
quite different then G-d’s. A messiah enables the Israelites to
return to their homeland, to rebuild the temple, to keep all the commandments,
and to worship G-d. Some Jewish groups are very messiah centric.
I believe there is some merit here if folks don’t become
ethnocentric requiring a messiah come from their own brand of Judaism, their own
yeshiva, or their own dynasty.
This is the great point
of Isaiah who showed us how the messiah could even come from another people, but
that we should be ready to follow his proclamations.
5.4.4 Bread of Healing
The Zohar holds a secret to healing that is related to the month of Nissan
There are two types of matza. One, called the "bread of affliction", (or
the "food of faith", by the Zohar), is from the verse (exodus 12:18) enjoining
us to eat matza on the first night of Pesach. The other, called the "bread of
abundance" ("food of healing", by the Zohar) is from the verse (Deut 16:3)
commanding us to eat matza during the entire week of
Zohar 157a: Bread of Affliction
R. Hiya then opened with the verse: In the first month, on the fourteenth
day of the month in the evening, ye shall eat unleavened bread (Ex. XII, 18).
‘This unleavened bread’, he said, ‘is called in another place
“bread of affliction” (Deut. XVI, 3), an expression on which the
companions have commented as follows. When Israel were in Egypt they were under
an alien power; and when God desired to bring them near unto Himself, He
assigned them the region of the bread of ’oni (affliction), the term
’oni admitting also of the reading ’ani (poor), and thus pointing to
King David, who said of himself: “for I am poor (’ani) and
needy” (Ps. LXXXVI, 1). Now this bread of affliction is called mazzah
(unleavened bread), symbolic of the female principle, which without the male
principle is, so to speak, in poverty. Thus Israel were first brought near the
grade symbolised by mazzah. But afterwards God caused them to enter other
grades, until the male principle joined the female principle, and so mazzah
received the addition of the letter vau, symbolic of the male principle, and
became converted into mizvah (command, precept). So Scripture says: “For
this commandment” (Deut. XXX, 7): first mazzah (unleavened bread), then
Zohar 183b: Bread of Healing
‘Now one has to consider: On the Passover the Israelites emerged from
their subsistence on the [spiritual] bread called “leaven” to be
nourished by the more honourable bread called Mazzah (unleavened). Now, when the
Israelites were worthy (on the Day of Pentecost) to eat a more excellent bread,
would it not have been more appropriate that the
“leaven” should have been abolished altogether and not been in
evidence at all? Why, then, was that sacrifice based chiefly on
leavened bread, as it is written: “They (the two loaves) shall be baked
with leaven” (Lev. XXIII, I7)? Moreover, on that day (Pentecost) the
“evil inclination” (leaven) came to naught, and the Torah, called
“Freedom”, was then given. We may, however, explain by the following
parable. A king had an only son who fell seriously ill. After a time the prince
expressed a desire to eat, but he was forbidden to eat any food other than that
prescribed by the physicians, and orders were given that for the set term of
that diet no other viands should be found in the palace. All was carried out
accordingly. But when the prince was come to the end of the period of his
special diet the ban was lifted, and it was intimated that now he was free to
eat whatsoever he fancied, since it would not harm him.
Similarly, when the Israelites came out from Egypt they
knew not the essence and mystery of the Faith. Said the Holy One: “Let
them taste only the medicinal food, and before they have finished it be shown no
other food soever.” But when the mazzoth were finished, which was the
medicine by means of which they were to enter and to comprehend the mystery of
the Faith, then the Holy One proclaimed: “From now on they may see and eat
leavened bread, because it cannot harm them”- especially on the Day of
Pentecost, when the supernal bread, which is a cure of all ills, was prepared
for them. Therefore leaven was offered to be burnt on the altar, [Tr.
note: According to the Talmud, the two loaves of leaven were to be eaten by the
priests.] and two other loaves were offered with it, and the leaven was burnt by
the fire of the altar, and it could not reign over and do harm to Israel.
Therefore holy Israel cleaves to the Holy One, blessed be He, on this day
(Pentecost), and if the Israelites had but preserved the two sides (symbols) of
the two loaves they would never have been subjected to chastisement.
‘New Year's Day is a day of judgment for those who have not
accepted the healing food, and have neglected the “medicine” of the
Torah for the sake of another food, which is leaven. For on this day that
“leaven” ascends and accuses mankind and speaks evil against all
whom it can malign in any wise. And at that time the Holy One, blessed be He,
sits in judgment over all and pronounces His decrees in regard to all the
spheres. Therefore, when He gave the Torah to Israel He gave them to taste of
that supernal bread of the celestial realm, namely, the manna, by means of which
they were enabled to perceive and penetrate into the mysteries of the Torah and
to walk in the straight path. However, this subject has been elucidated by the
Companions, in connection with the mysteries to which we have already
After consuming the bread of faith, one partakes of the bread of
healing. The cessation of eating breads and raw sugar is beneficial as well
preventing celiac disease.
The Zohar discusses reincarnation with an absolute
All souls are subject to reincarnation; and people do not know the ways of
the Holy One, blessed be He! They do not know that they are brought before the
tribunal both before they enter into this world and after they leave it; they
are ignorant of the many reincarnations and secret works which they have to
undergo, and of the number of naked souls, and how many naked spirits roam about
in the other world without being able to enter within the veil of the King's
Palace. Men do not know how the souls revolve like a stone that is thrown from a
sling. But the time is at hand when these mysteries will be disclosed. (Zohar II
5.4.6 Zohar Prolog
There are a few good resources
Matt’s translation and commentary is best. The B’nai Baruch
translation online is very authentic. Berg’s translation includes source
texts. Here is the B’nai Baruch translation and my modified
5-19: Zohar beginning
1. Rabbi Chizkiyah opened by saying, “It is written, as the rose
amongst the thorns”. What is the rose? It is the Community of Israel.
Because there is a rose; and there is a rose. Just as the rose among the thorns
is tinged with red and white, so is the Community of Israel is affected by the
qualities of judgment and mercy. Just as the rose has thirteen petals, so the
Community of Israel is surrounded by the thirteen attributes of mercy. However,
Elokim thought here to reveal 13 words that surround the Community of Israel and
2. After this, in order to bring out the five rigid leaves that surround
the rose, it is mentioned another time in the passage. These five mean
salvation. These are 5 gates. And this secret is written about, “I will
raise the cup of salvation.” This is the ‘cup of benediction.’
The cup of benediction must rest on five fingers, and no more, just as the rose
rests on five rigid leaves that represent the five fingers. This rose is the cup
of benediction. From the second to the third mention of the name Elokim, there
are five words. From this point the Light was created and concealed and enclosed
within that covenant that entered the rose and fructified it. This is referred
to as a tree bearing fruit whose seed is within it and this seed really exists
in the letter of the covenant.
3. And just as the covenant is sown by forty-two conceptions from that same
seed, so is the holy name of the creation sown.
5-20: Commentary on the Zohar first page of
the prologue with source texts
Rabbi Hizkiah opened, it is written, “Like a rose amongst the
thorns”. From where is the rose?
Song of Songs 2:1-4
1. I am the lily of Sharon, a rose of the valleys.
2. Like a rose amongst thorns, so is my beloved amongst the maidens
3. Like the apple tree in the forest so is my friend amongst young men
בנים, I sat
down in his shadow with great delight, and his fruit was sweet to my
4. He brought me to the banqueting –
and his banner –
over me was love.
This is the assembly of Israel. Because there is a rose (physical) and
there is a rose (Israel). As this rose is between thorns, the other is between
red and white. So the community of Israel is between judgment and mercy. Just
as the rose is between thorns, this is to be between red and white, so is the
community of Israel between judgment and mercy. Just as a rose has
the community of Israel has 13 attributes
of mercy that are protecting (like a magic
her from all –
harm (the other side – sitrahah –
Adonay, Adonay, El Rahum vHanoon, Erech Apayim vRav Hesed vEmet, Notzar
Hesed Lalaphim, Notzar Avon vPesha vHataah vNakei – G-d, G-d, the Merciful
and Gracious, Long Faced and abundant in Kindness and Truth, extending kindness
to the thousands, reaching for sin and transgression and error and
2. And be ready in the morning, and come up in the morning to mount Sinai,
and present yourself there to me in the top of the mount.
3. And no man shall come up with you, nor let any man be seen throughout
all the mount; nor let the flocks nor herds feed before that mount.
4. And he cut two tablets of stone like to the first; and Moses rose up
early in the morning, and went up to Mount Sinai, as the Lord had commanded him,
and took in his hand the two tablets of stone.
5. And the Lord descended in the cloud, and stood with him there, and
proclaimed the name of the Lord.
6. And the Lord passed by before him, and proclaimed, The Lord, The Lord
God, merciful and gracious, long suffering, and abundant in goodness and
7. Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and
sin and cleansing, and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the
iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children’s
children, to the third and to the fourth generation.
8. And Moses made haste, and bowed his head toward the earth, and
, from Elohim until –
(meanwhile, sha’a - hour) are 13 words that surround the community of
Israel and guard her.
After this, in order to bring out the five rigid leaves that surround
the rose, it is mentioned another time in the passage. The principle of five is
the essence of salvation and the principle of five ‘shielding gates’
And this secret is written about, “I will raise the cup of
salvation.” This is the ‘cup of blessing.’ The cup of blessing
must rest on five fingers, and no more, just as the rose rests on five rigid
leaves that represent the five
fingers. This rose is the cup
of blessing. From the second to the third mention of the name Elohim, there are
five words. From this point,
the Light was created and concealed and enclosed within that covenant that
entered the rose and fructified it. This is referred to as a tree bearing fruit
whose seed is within it and this seed really exists in the letter of the
And exactly –
the covenant is sown –
with forty-two copulations for this one seed, so is sown the revealed and
expounded Name with forty-two letters about the working of
The right hand blesses, the left takes and
restrains. Hence there are five gates of salvation or blessing referring to the
shefa or bounty from the five sefirot that lean to the right. Salvation refers
to G-d’s protection, a physical salvation from harm. This is why they are
rigid leaves protecting the
The Hebrew word
‘sha-ar’ – gate denotes the stronghold of protection in this
case as opposed to an entryway.
There are 13 and 5 and 5 and 5 words
between the usages of Elohim at the beginning of Genesis. The first 13 allude
to the Thirteen Attributes of G-d’s mercy that reside at the supernal Root
of the Tree of Life. The first 5 words allude to the male leaning Sefirot. The
second 5 words allude to the female leaning Sefirot of the Tree of Life.
At the end of the Second Five is
the creation of light and the seed that is the placement of the Torah in the
center of the Rose, which is the community of Israel.
5-21: 42 intercourses into the rose for one
There are 42 intercourses – emissions of light into the rose for one
seed, the covenant of Torah to be born. The forty-two letters divide into 7
groups of 6 letters describing the creative forces on each day of creation
including the seventh when Rest was
Hence, the seed
parallels the Name of G-d and the forty-two acts of intercourse are the
forty-two composing letters.
Rabbeinu Yonah of Gerona is the author of Shaarei Teshuvah –
תשובה, the Gates of
XXVIII. The penitent is further obliged to humble himself and to undertake
to conduct himself in the manner prescribed by our Sages of blessed memory:
“And be lowly of spirit before all men” (Avoth 4:10 Rabbi Levitas
Ish Yavne). So doing, he will not be angered by his neighbors nor take
offense at them; nor will he take to heart all the things that he hears,
overlooking injustices against himself in order to atone for his transgressions,
as Hazal have said, “If one overlooks injustices against himself, all of
his sins will be forgiven” (Rosh Hashanah 17a), G-d’s relationship
with him corresponding to his relationship with others. This concept
constitutes a highly significant opening for hope, as it is said, “Let him
put his mouth in the dust; perhaps there may be hope. Let him give his cheek to
him that smiteth him; let him be satiated with shame” (Lamentations
Moshe Cordovero, the author of “The Palm
Tree of Devorah,” provides training on improving one’s midos –
character traits by learning to behave in the image of G-d. In summary, the
book presents the following
Mastering the Midos According to the Palm Tree of Devorah
(The eight good
qualities under the banner of humility
These parallel the head in the following
- A person must be humble. Humility derives from Keter. Keter is associated
with the human head.
- The wisdom (Hochmah) of Keter is to think good thoughts and to hold to a
path of compassion.
- A person’s forehead should have no harshness. Even though certain
people may arouse anger, one should conciliate them and placate them with good
will for this is what G-d does. One should behave with pleasantness towards all
creatures, for a harsh person is repaid in kind.
- A person’s ears should always turn to hear good, while falsehood or
despicable things should be denied entry. Just as we expect Hashem to hear our
good reports, we should behave in the same manner with our fellow.
- A person’s eyes should not gaze at anything despicable. Rather,
one’s eyes should watch over unfortunates and display compassion. One
should distance oneself from noticing evil just as we hope that Hashem sees
mostly our good.
- The nose should never hold the breath of anger. Rather it should contain
the breath of life, good will, and patience, even toward those who are unworthy.
One should always exhale forgiveness of sin and pardon of iniquity.
- A person’s face should always shine and one should receive all people
with a cheerful countenance. All who gaze upon it should find joy and
cheerfulness. “Like in water one’s face is reflected back, also the
heart of a man is to a man” – Proverbs 27:19.
- The mouth should express only good and the content of his words should be
Torah and constant good will. No ugly words, curses, anger, frivolous talk
should escape it. Rather, it should resemble the supernal ‘Mouth,’
which is uttering good at all times. Thus, one must speak well of everything,
expressing benevolence and blessings constantly.
First, a person should commune with G-d in solitude in order to perfect
his wisdom. Second a person should teach others what he has learned. A person
should act as a father to all creatures showing mercy and helping
Repentance and return to G-d. “Calling repentance to mind all the
days of his life causes binah -understanding to illuminate all his days, the
result being that all his days are spent in repentance. That is, he merges
himself with binah, which is repentance, so that all the days of his life are
crowned with the secret of the higher level of
Love of G-d, which leads to love of people who are in the image of G-d.
Practice Nachum Ish Gamzu’s saying, “this too is for the
Buying clothes and providing a house for one’s wife is the proper
expression of might and power, sweetening severity. The desires of the Yetzer
Hara, bad inclination, are intended for satisfaction of the wife by providing
her with clothes, a house, and physical satisfaction. Afterwards one has
brought gevurah to a good use and satisfied the Yetzer Tov, good inclination.
The fine clothes and house model after the Temple. The satisfied wife brings
the Shechinah, the divine presence of G-d into the home.
Obtained by studying Torah. This grants an understanding of the truth and
provides a countenance of beauty. “One who teaches the Torah is on the
level of Tiferets. When a man sits and learns for this purpose, Tiferets flows
into Netzach and Hod and he actually attains their
Encourage students of Torah. Scripture comes from the right and
associates with Netzah.
Netzah and Hod are called ‘those who adhere to
it and support it.’
Financially assist and physically help students of Torah. Mishnah comes
from the left and associates with hod. Talmud includes both Scripture and
Be careful in speech. Avoid anger.
Suffer not thy mouth to cause thy flesh to sin; neither say thou before the
angel, that it was an error: wherefore should G-d be angry at thy voice, and
destroy the work of thine hands?
Apply ones wealth for the sake of Heaven. Behave humbly.
Moshe Cordovero revealed that each sefira has a leaning. Even the
sefirot along the central trunk lean to either the left or the right and this
leaning can be corrected. Cordovero teaches that we must strive to bring all
the sefirot to lean to the right
5-4: Sefirot Leanings
Sefirot that lean to the left have emotions easily applied in negative,
destructive manners. It is our duty to find the positive in these sefirot and
harness the emotions in service to Hashem. Moshe Cordovero describes this
The chapter begins:
Cordovero on Binah and Repentance
How does man train himself in the quality of binah – understanding.
He returns in complete repentance, for there is nothing like her, because she
repairs all flaws –
just as binah sweetens all severities and neutralizes their bitterness, one
should repent and rectify all flaws. A person who calls repentance to mind all
the days of this life causes binah to illuminate all his days, the result being
that all his days are spent in repentance. That is, he merges himself with
binah, which is repentance, so that all the days of his life are crowned with
the secret of the higher level of repentance.
Note that all existence is rooted in repentance, according to the secret of
the Jubilee. In addition, the root of the external forces — expounded in
the mystical teachings as the secret of the River Dinur — is also rooted
therein and flows therefrom. (However, the River Dinur itself is included in
Holiness, according to the mystical teachings regarding the severities.) This
is called ‘the outflow of Divine Anger.’ But by means of the
mystical teaching regarding the verse, “G-d smelled the pleasing scent of
the sacrifices...” (Gen8:21), that ‘outflow’ returns to its
source, the severities become sweetened, the anger ceases, and “G-d
refrains from the evil...” (Ex32:14). Likewise, by means of the mystery
of repentance, say that repentance benefits only the aspects of holiness in man.
For his evil aspects are rectified as well, just as the severities are sweetened
by this attribute.
Know that Kayin himself was evil, and he derived from evil, yet he was
told, “If you do good, will you not be uplifted...?” (Genesis 4:7),
meaning, “Do not think that, because you derive from evil, you have no
hope. This is false. For ‘if you do good,’ anchoring yourself
firmly in the good implanted there, via the root of your soul, and do yourself
good.” For everything bitter has a sweet Supernal root, as the mystical
teachings explain. Thus, a person’s evil actions may be turned into good,
and his deliberate transgressions may be turned into merits. For when one
returns in complete repentance, these selfsame evil deeds from the ‘Left
Side,’ which were accusers enter the higher worlds and become rooted in
holiness there, transforming themselves into good rather than becoming
nullified. This is what G-d told Kayin regarding his own self-betterment.
Thus, had Kayin repented, thereby becoming rectified, then the state of
Adam’s sin—in which Kayin was conceived (the name Kayin deriving
from the phrase "kina demisavuta", meaning ‘contaminated
nest’)—would have been to his credit, according to the mystical
interpretation of the concept of ‘the Son brings Merit to His
Father.’ However, Kayin did not desire to repent, and therefore the
entire Left Side derives from there, but all its branches will eventually become
sweetened, returning to perfection. The reason for this is exactly as we have
explained—a person who caused evil to become rooted in himself can sweeten
it and restore it to good.
Therefore, when a person purifies his evil inclination and transforms it
into good, it becomes rooted in holiness. This is the elevated level of
repentance that a person who wishes to conduct himself in this manner should
contemplate every day, and he should also repent in some way, so that all his
days will be spent in
Understanding is symbolized by motherhood here. A mother corrects her
child, sweetens the judgment, nullifies the bitterness, and helps the child fix
Cordovero explains that hesed can only be achieved by placing the love of
God before all other loves:
Cordovero on Kindness and the Love of God
How should a person train himself in the attribute of hesed (kindness)?
The main way to enter into the secret of hesed is to love G-d so absolutely that
one will never forsake His service for any reason; for, compared with the love
of God, Blessed Be He, no other love has any worth. Therefore, he should first
attend to the requirements of his Divine service; then, the remainder of his
time may be used for other
The wants of
ones family may distract from an opportunity for hesed. Combine hesed with the
family activity and all will be blessed from Hashem. Plan a kindness activity
with ones spouse and carry it out with the whole family
Difficult events are also for the
This is a binding of
malchuts to hesed. Cordovero presents eight principles of mastering hesed. As
they are between man and man they are between man and G-d. A person who loves
G-d loves man.
Love thy Neighbor
One who loves man greatly loves G-d truly.
Tiferets and Binah
Providing the necessities of a child’s sustenance from birth. This
is the birth of Tiferet from Binah. An easy birth leans the child to the right
and Tiferet leans to the right. A rigorous birth leans Tiferet to the left
descent of Binah.
Circumcising the child. “One should pursue all those who cause the
foreskin to grow on Yesod, bringing them back in repentance in such a way that,
by circumcising the foreskins of their hearts, he renders the Supernal Tzaddik
(G-d’s reflection to us) without a foreskin.
Malchuts and Tiferet
Visiting the sick and healing them. The Shechinah is lovesick with desire
for Tiferets. Tiferets in the world to come is lovesick for Malchuts, the
Shechinah in this world. As one treats ill people well one must also treat
Malchuts and Tiferets well being saddened by their isolation from each other.
Tzedakah, tikkun, holiness, blessings, Torah practice and study heal the union
of Malchuts and Tiferets above.
Binah and Tiferet
Malchuts and Tiferet
Giving charity to the poor. The
G-d is to say amen 90 times a day, the Kedushah 4 times a day, 100 blessings a
day, and to read from the 5 books of Torah each
For Tiferets we must
draw down from Binah a supernal sheaf for it says, “we must leave them for
the poor and the stranger”, and Tiferet is as stranger to Malchut below.
For Malchuts, we should draw down tzedakah (maser ani – the tithe to the
poor) from Tiferets and this is given to Yesod, who is called poor, which raises
Malchut. If one binds Malchut to Tiferet, he gives the tithe to the
Tiferets and Malchuts
Yesod and Malchuts
Offering hospitality to strangers. This is to give Tiferet and Yesod a
guest house to rest which is Malchuts. For Tiferets and Yesod are in exile.
They are searching for what they have lost, the Shechinah. Fixing times for
Torah study unifies Tiferets and Malchuts.
Keter and Malchuts-Hesed
Attending to the dead. Clothing the dead in white is cleansing the body of
sin which elevates the sefirot one by one, limb by limb raising them to the
level of Eden on high which is Hochmah of keter. The upper Eden is in tiferets
so Cordovero is referring to even higher aspect of Eden. This is a mitzvah of
Right. Making peace between peers from Hochmah to Binah, from Hesed to
Gevurah, or from Netzah to Hod.
Left. Similarly making peace between peers from Binah to Hochmah, from
Gevurah to Hesed, or from Hod to Netzah.
I am certain that all of the sefirot really exist for the sake of
Malchuts (reuniting the Shechinah) and Binah (repentance). In the same way man
exists for the sake of
Traveling leads to becoming a “vehicle for the exiled
Cordovero on Being a Vehicle for the Shechinah
A man should exile himself, wandering from place to place for the sake of
Heaven, thereby becoming a vehicle for the exiled Shechinah. He should think to
himself: “Behold, I am in exile, but I have all my implements with me.
But what about the honor of the Supreme One, for the Shechinah is exiled without
any implements, for they have gotten lost as a result of the exile?” For
this reason, he should manage with as little as possible – as the verse
states: “make yourself implements for exile (Yechezkel 12:3) – and
let the exile humble his heart, while he binds himself to Torah. Then the
Shechinah will be with him.
He should also impose an ‘expulsion order’ upon himself, always
banishing himself from the comforts of home, just as Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai and
his comrades banished themselves to toil in Torah. Better still, he should
weary his legs by trudging from place to place without horse or wagon.
Concerning such a person, it is stated: “...his hope shevaro –
is with the Lord, his G-d” (Psalm 146:5), deriving from the word shevar
meaning ‘breaking,’ for he breaks his body for the honor of the
Supreme One. 
The ‘Gates of Light’ by Joseph Gikatilla, is monumental for
showing the source passages in the Torah for the principle ideas of Kabbalah.
These source passages are also fundamental to Midrashic understanding, since the
Text 5-26: Shaarey Orah on Kol (all)
Sometimes the tenth attribute which is AdoNaY is known as KoL in the name
of this quality, hence by virtue of this understanding the essential meaning of
I am the Lord, who made Kol who alone stretched out the
heavens. (Isaiah 44:24)
For with the force of this attribute the heavens and earth were created as
well as all the hosts of heaven and down below. The essence of this is
contained in the verse:
vayeKhuLu (And He finished...) the heavens and the earth.
The essence of vayeKhuLu is the root KoL. Here is the grand design of this
essential understanding: the ShaBaT is the essence of KoL and it contains the
two attributes, which are the essence of ShaMoR and ZaCHoR and that is the
essence of “vayeKhuLu (And He finished) the heavens and the earth,
vayeKhaL (and he finished) ELoHIM on the seventh day.” These three
forefathers inherited this attribute, KoL, which contains the essence ZaCHoR and
ShaMoR (remember and protect):
5-6: Three Fathers and the
In reference to Abraham it is written:
“And God blessed Abraham with KoL. (Gen 24:1)
Concerning Isaac, it is written:
“...that I ate from Kol.” (Gen 27:33)
Concerning Jacob, it is written:
“... for God has favored me and I have Kol.” (Gen
Thus David wrote about them, peace be with him:
“Thus KoL (all) of your precepts are KoL straight. (Psalm
To understand these verses is parametric to understanding the
1. And Abraham was old, and well advanced in age; and the Lord had blessed
Abraham in all things.
2. And Abraham said to the oldest servant of
his house, who ruled over all that he had, Put, I beg you, your hand under my
3. And I will make you swear by the Lord, the God of heaven, and the
God of the earth, that you shall not take a wife for my son of the daughters of
the Canaanites, among whom I live;
4. But you shall go to my country, and to
my family, and take a wife for my son Isaac.
From Abraham we learn that
“all” is a daughter-in-law, a wife for his son. The
‘daughter’ quality manifests in the sefira of Malchut, also known as
the daughter, feminine one – Nukvah, and the feminine presence of G-d
– Shechinah. Abraham’s father quality derives from the energy of
Hochmah, since Hesed is just below. In the stories of the Partzufim, the
daughter energy often unites with the father on Shabbat.
And Isaac his father said to him, “Who are you?” And he said,
“I am your son, your firstborn Esau.” And Isaac trembled very much,
and said, “Who then is he who hunted venison, and brought it to me, and I
have eaten of all before you came, and have blessed him? Moreover, he
shall be blessed.” And when Esau heard the words of his father, he cried
with a great and very bitter cry, and said to his father, “Bless me, me
also, O my father.”
“All” is the food that Rebekah, daughter in law of
Abraham prepared. All is a euphemism for Rebekah for “All” that
Isaac had was because of Rebekah.
And he said, “What do you mean by all this drove which I
met?” And he said, “These are to find grace in the sight of my
lord.” And Esau said, “I have enough, my brother; keep what you
have to yourself.” And Jacob said, “No, I beg you, if now I have
found grace in your sight, then receive my present from my hand; for therefore I
have seen your face, as though I had seen the face of God, and you were pleased
with me. Take, I beg you, my blessing that is brought to you, because God has
dealt graciously with me, and because I have enough.” And he urged
him, and he took it.
For Jacob, “all” is that
which he needs to live and serve G-d—“all” is
“enough”. Here there is an allusion to the Name, Shaddai (Sha
– that is dai – enough), which holds back the shefa or sustenance of
G-d just above Malchut.
The House of Esau
Who is the daughter?
She makes peace between
She is all and nothing.
She is grace from heaven above, our
only true blessing.
Where is the house of Esau? Where is he hidden?
say Rome, but I say in Israel, a dormant spirit who has not yet risen to his
He waits for Leah to cling to him and to rise as the righteous
moshiach of his generation.
His emotions betray him, but his love is strong,
his deeds are noble, his heart is gold.
Where is Esau? His sparks lie in the
house of Israel waiting to lead us to overcome our enemies,
Waiting to lead
us to overcome ourselves.
Therefore I love your commandments above gold, above fine gold.
Therefore all your precepts all are straight; and I hate
every false way.
Your testimonies are wonderful; therefore my soul keeps them.
The unfolding of your words gives light; it gives understanding to the
The Strength of the daughter’s energy comes from Truth that
is Tiferet above. Here is the final secret of Kol, namely that all
Also see: Text 8-39: The Lord
blessed Abraham with a daughter
The Apocrypha are a collection of post biblical books that contain numerous
kabbalistic allusions, especially in the area of apocalyptic thought. Some of
these ideas parallel those found in the Zohar such as the 6000 years of creation
followed by the 1000 years of messianic bliss.
Masorites did not canonize the Apocrypha because the theology showed the
influence of Greek and Persian influences to too great an extent. Some of them
like the Book of Zerubabel created powers in the darkness where before stood
only dark servants of Hashem.
Here, the Satan wages war against the Messiah. There is also discussion of the
power of the Messianic mother vs. the Mother of Stone of the Satan’s
child. Some of these books show the transition to Christian ideology. Some
are written after the canonization of the New Testament.
of the Twelve Patriarchs exhibits the pattern of seven angels, which may have
been seven demigods in the Manichean system of
The Dead Sea Scrolls are an earlier collection of post biblical and
biblical writings. The messianic scrolls reveal the source of different
messianic Jewish traditions.
The Essenes practiced a very ritualist life style that may have enabled their
ecstatic experiences and visions.
Berachot 7b. Also
Rabbi Aryeh Rosenfeld on Samuel
Lenowitz’s class in Kabbalah,
which the Bahir
quotes in Kaplan, 163 on
University of Utah,
Kabbalah, Professor Harris Lenowitz, 10/8/2002. Harris pointed out that the
crown is thought in the following Bahir
Edition, Translation and Text-Critical Commentary, A. Peter Hayman, 2004. Based
on PhD research in Edingburgh from 1968 and newly published by Mohr
See 5.2.3 Golem
for a description of the creation of a
calf and a man in the blue text.
is a liquid unit measure of a small bottle probably the size of full cup or
glass or the volume of six eggs of that time: loogah or logah -
Master of a
“Ventriloquist or necromancer” --
To produce sounds
making it appear that the dead are speaking through
understands mabadilim in the sense of ‘draw a distinction’. But for
their iniquities, their power would equal God's, and they could create a
Talmud comments, “The Book of Creation, Heb. Sefer Yeziroh, is the title
of two esoteric books. The older, referred to here, was a thaumaturgical work
popular in the Talmudic period. It was also known as Hilkoth Yezirah (Laws of
Creation), and is so called in the same story quoted on 67b. Rashi, there states
that the creation was performed by means of mystic combinations of the Divine
Name, which does not come under the ban of witchcraft. Its basic idea is that
the Creation was accomplished by means of the power inherent in those letters
(Cf. Rab's saying: ‘Bezalel knew how to combine the letters by which
heaven and earth were created’. Ber. 55a. Cf. also
LXI, 3 et seq.; Prayer of Manasseh: Ecc. R. III, 11
on the magic power of the letters of the Divine Name), and that this same power
could be utilized in further creation. The work was ascribed to Abraham, which
fact indicates an old tradition, and the possible antiquity of the book itself.
It has affinities with Babylonian, Egyptian, and Hellenic mysticism and its
origin has been placed in the second century B.C.E., when such a combination of
influences might be expected. It is noteworthy that Raba's statement above,
though not mentioning the Sefer Yezirah, insists on freedom from sin as a
prerequisite of creation by man, v. J.E., XII,
, Moshe Idel,
refers to himself as “the young” in
manner places. This is like the phrase ‘son of man’, a phrase of
humility. The kabbalist acknowledges how with all he knows, he is yet like a
child. Similarly Metatron was called, ‘Na’ar’ which means
youth by the other angels. Yet the young is superior in knowledge than the
others around suggesting that sometimes a child knows more. As Isaiah says,
“a child shall lead them”. [Isaiah 11:6-9]
The wolf also shall dwell
with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the
calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child
shall lead them.And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young
ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the
ox.And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp,
and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice'
den.They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain:
for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the
waters cover the sea.
This is a kabbalistic
technique whereby at higher levels an outer source (even if within the
kabbalist’s mind) asks the question and the kabbalist prophesies the
answer. At lower levels, the kabbalist asks questions and receives inspiration
on the answers or an outer source answers them (within the kabbalist’s
mind). See Meditation 2-2: Back to the
on page 60.
This is the acrostic for the four worlds: A
From the world of Beriyah
From the world of Atzulut
This is the great mystery of whether the golem is a magical entity or a
the world of Yetzirah
intermediary world here, source of the animal and appetite soul, is
, the World of Formation. Above this is the
supernal world representing the intellect, Beriyah, the World of Creation.
(Though Yetzirah is a lower world one ascends into it with
interesting deduction is that a created Beriyah
would not perish with the death of the body. (Though Beriyah is a higher world,
one descends into it with
the study of prophecy as well. Also Kabbalists inherit the prophetic
This Aleph refers to
the highest world. They drew a soul down from
the world of Atzulut by their own soul reaching to the apex that is the root of
Beriyah that is the leaves of
Jewish Magical Mystical Traditions on the
Artificial Anthropoid”, Moshe Idel,
, Moshe Idel trans.,
Sanhedren 65b and
Commentary from the
magical tomes contain procedures involving different elements of earth to make a
See Meditation 31-2: Meditation for the
High, Moshe Idel, 2005,
See Text 2-252: Zechariah
Rosenfeld, Audio Gemara Baba Metziah 1 : 7th
minute refers to Emet
– Truth as the seal of G-d. See 7.19 Truth
and the end of 26.4 Canaanite
See Figure 5-3: Seven Planets and Earth
understand the correct order. Also an online version is available from http://www.yarzheit.org/antiquesefer/raziel.pdf
also shown in
Sepher Rezial Hemelach, The Book of the Angel Rezial, Steve Savedow, p. 107,
Fig. 4. Also See Table 8-4: The Sevens of
and Sefer Yetzirah
See Table 2-4: Seven Days of
See Table 5-1: Corrected order of the Seven Planets
formed by the Seven Double Letters
5-2: The Seven Garments of Atonement
, Table 5-4: Sefirot Leanings
, and Table 8-4: The Sevens of
See Table 2-4: Seven Days of Creation
, Table 8-4: The Sevens of Creation
, 5.2.4 The
Seven Double Letters
Genesis describes G-d walking in the Garden. Song of songs describes G-d as a
young husband. Shiur Komah describes G-d in mystical terms like the
Unveiled, The Book of Concealed Mystery, pages
In fact I am
writing this text on Rosh Hodesh Adar Sheni which is also the Hebrew day of my
Unveiled, The Idra Rabba Kaddisha, the Great Sanctified Idra, page
The Palm Tree of
Devorah, Chapter 1.
Talmon, Kibbutznik from Maale Hamisha, daughter of Sima Talmon, my
Siddur, page 771.
is the shofar calling our soul back to Hashem in the trembling that proceeds a
complete tshuvah or return. The beast is the yetzer hara or evil inclination
which is separated from our soul and slain by
The Anatomy of
God The Book of Concealment, The Great Holy Assembly, and The Lesser Holy
Assembly of the Zohar with The Assembly of the Tabernacle, trans. Roy A.
Rosenberg, Ktav Publishing, New York,
Sahar – traveling
about, commerce, ‘minding about’ is better based on Arabic meaning
of ‘practicing magic’ or an ‘amulet’, but this is not
really Hebrew, but how would ‘traveling about her from all harm’
vVohu are included in these 13 words, one would wonder how they could guard her?
Instead they allude to the passage in Exodus
The right hand
blesses, the left takes away or restrains. Hence there are five gates of
salvation or blessing referring to the shefa or bounty from the five sefirot
that lean to the right. Salvation refers to G-d’s protection, a physical
salvation from harm. This is why they are rigid protecting the flower. There is
no other concept in Torah about ‘Five Gates of
are the five fingers of the right hand that represent the five positive sefirot
of the tzelem of Hashem, namely Keter Hochmah, Hesed, Tiferet, and Netzah. See
Table 5-4: Sefirot
the five sefirot leaning to the left side alluding to the feminine and the
procreative source. Text 5-19
See 10.10 The
42 Letter Name of God
Repentance, Rabbeinu Yonah of Gerona, Feldheim, page
The Palm Tree of
Devorah – Tomer Devorah, Moshe Cordovero, trans. Rabbi Moshe Miller,
Targum Press, page 48.
The Palm Tree of Devorah, Moshe Cordovero, Targum Press, Chapter 4, page
Aryeh Kaplan, p.34
The Palm Tree
of Devorah, Moshe Cordovero, Targum Press, Chapter 5, page
see For Women
– 31, 32, 70, 72,
Hazal teach that one
should remove oneself to a place of Torah learning. This teaches one to travel
to live where there are more Jews involved in
Palm Tree of
Devorah, Moshe Cordovera.
Gates of Light, Sha’are Orah, translated by Avi Weinstein, Sacred
Literature Series, Harper Collins, pp.
See 31.18 Sefer
See 31.21 The
Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs
See 26.9 Essenes and the Dead Sea Scrolls