Shomer Emunim #B10-B11

17 Jan

Shomer Emunim #B10-B11

Reminder: Translation is by;
 The Horonsteipler Rav; Rabbi Mordechai Twerski, Shlita,
Edited & transcribed by his talmid, Shaul Taub.
Brackets are notes by Rabbi Twerski, Braces are editors’ notes.

She’altiel: Those statements are true and accurate, because by understanding the Neshamah that’s inside us and how it influences the various functions of the body, we can envision the will of Hashem. It also helps us validate some of the cornerstone essential principals [of Kabballah] as you’ve done by the quote from Chazal that you brought. However, since that quote is somewhat encrypted {and CAN be misinterpreted}, it’s debatable whether or not {your interpretation of} those essential principals is actually what Chazal meant to teach us, since it CAN be interpreted differently. So can you please tell me whether those principals that you mentioned are openly discussed anywhere among the writings of the Mekubalim, {the way you explained them,} or not. It’s actually inappropriate to base the foundations of the principals of Emunah or to validate them, upon such hidden and encrypted quotes, which CAN be interpreted in different ways.

Yehoyada: The principals that I mentioned, including the way I explained them, are indisputable, because they can be found explicitly listed in The Zohar, and in all other handwritten manuscripts and printed Seforim of the Mekubalim. I’ll also bring you some small snippets from their lengthy discussions on that which has already been clarified.

  1. The 1st essential principal that we find is that Hashem fills the entire universe, and that there is no place that is not under His control. This is what’s written in the section of The Zohar called Ra’aya Mehemnah (The Trusty Shepherd), Parshas Pinchas, Page 257b: “Just like the master of the world has no known name and no known location, and yet He controls everything everywhere; similarly, the Neshamah, which has no known name and no known location within the entire body, and yet the entire body is under its control. And there is no limb or organ in the body that is not under its control.” Also written in the same section on page 225a: “He encompasses all of the worlds, and there is nothing anywhere, whether above, below or in the four directions, other than Him. And there is nothing that is outside of His domain. He fills all of the worlds, and there is no other power that fills all of them except for Him. He gives life to everything, and there is no other power that gives Him life.” As is written in the Possuk: “You give life to everything.” (Nechemiah 9:6). And in The Zohar, Parshas Behar, Page 109b, it says: “You are the Neshamah of all Neshamos. There is no Neshamah above you, and there is no power above you. You are above and beyond everything, and are greater than everything everywhere, etc.” Refer there for more research. And in the Zohar Chadash, Parshas Yisro, Page 55, Column 3, it says: “There is no place that He is not, whether above unto infinity or below unto no limit, and in all directions there is no power other than Him.” So we see that it’s explained very clearly that there is one existence that is imperative to all of existence that is not dependent on anything other than Himself, as he said [in the above quote from The Zohar]: “He gives life to everything, and there is no other power that gives Him life.” And He rules over all of existence, for there is nothing outside of His domain. Even the lowest of existences such as the “superficial powers” *, all came from His power and remain standing with His consent. As is written in the Zohar Chadash, Parshas Yisro, Page 55, Column 4: “Even the other powers that are part of the power of Tumah, are all in His power to do with as He pleases, etc.” Refer there for more research.                                                                            [* “Superficial powers” = Powers that appear to be distant from Hashem and things that appear to be obstacles to Hashem’s Will such as powers of nature that appear to function on their own.]                                                                                                        
  2. The 2nd principal that we find is that Hashem tolerates the universe, and He guides, supervises and intervenes. This is what’s written in the Zohar Chadash, Page 55: “He tolerates higher and lower worlds. And if He were to withdraw from them, they would not be sustained, would not be known, nor would they have life, etc.” And in the introduction to the Tikunei Zohar, Page 17b, it says: “You fill all of the names, and You are that which makes all the names of Hashem complete. And if You were to withdraw from them, all the names would remain like a body without a Neshamah.” Also in the introduction to the Tikunei Zohar, Page 3b, it says: “You are above all, and illuminate the ten Sefiros of Atzilus, the ten Sefiros of Briyah, the ten groups of Malachim [which as he said before; refers to the level of Yetzirah], and all the levels of heavens [which is ultimately the level of Asiyah], and You don’t change in any of the different levels.” We see from this that The Infinite is the foundation that is the catalyst and sustains all of existence in the higher and lower worlds. For not only did He fabricate and create them, but He also sustains, guides and directs them. For the Creator is not like a human builder that builds a house, and then the house no longer needs the builder to remain standing. But rather He, Y.S. (may His name be blessed), is the cause for everything to function and is the cause that watches over and sustains the universe [He is the reason that everything remains existing], for He continuously gives everything the ability to exist and to be sustained. Therefore we say in the part of Shacharis called Yotzer Hame’oros (in the Brachos of Kriyas Shemah): “With His goodness, day after day, He continuously renews the process of creation.” [Which is a continual sustaining of all of creation.] And if He were to withdraw His influence from the universe, it would become empty and everything would cease to exist. This is the insight that is learned from: “And if He were to withdraw His spirit and His Neshamah, all flesh would die.” (Iyov, 34:14-15).                                                                                                                                                                                                   
  3. The 3rd essential principal is that Hashem is Yachid Ba’olamo – unique in the world. What that means is that it is The Infinite that makes it possible for all the Sefiros to function, and He alone therefore, is its essence. And as is written in the Zohar Chadash, Parshas Yisro, Page 55, Column 3: “He created everything with understanding, and nothing created Him. He is the designer and He designed everything beautifully, and He has neither a form nor a designer. He makes everything function at the level of Malchus, and there is nothing that makes Him function, etc.” The Ari, Z”LHH, wrote in the Sefer Adam Yashar (The Straight Man), Page 2; that The Infinite emanated, created, formed and made everything. Refer there for more research. You’ll find the same [type of quotes] in all the Sifrei Mekubalim. So we see from this that even though all functions were performed by The Infinite through the Sefiros; never the less, He still remains unique in His universe. For justifiably, one cannot truthfully attribute the performance of the functions to the Sefiros, but rather to the One that performs them, which is The Infinite, Y.S., as I already demonstrated in the first dialogue, paragraph 71.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                
  4. The 4th essential principal that we find is that Hashem doesn’t derive any benefit from anything that exists, as is written (Iyov, 35:7): “If you are righteous, what have you given Him, or what would He take from your hand.” [I.e. What can you give Hashem, or what can Hashem take from you that He doesn’t already have?] And as is written in the Tikunei Zohar, Page 131b: “He is the one that gives blessings to everything, etc., and does not need blessings from anyone, for there is nothing that sustains or can influence Him.” And in the section of The Zohar called Ra’aya Mehemnah (The Trusty Shepherd), Parshas Pinchas, Page 225a; it says: “He gives life to everything, and there is no other power that gives Him life.” As is written in the Possuk (Nechemiah 9:6): “You give life to everything.” And it’s not enough to just say that He doesn’t benefit from anything else, but also that He is not compelled to benefit or to influence as a result of complaints or Tfilos (prayers) outside of Himself. The same goes for anything that exists. We cannot say that being influenced by anything outside of Himself stimulates The Infinite, neither does He need assistance with the functioning of all the lower worlds and the like. There’s no justification for that because He is not affected by anything other than Himself. If we were to say that He is influenced by any other cause or that He is stimulated through any other cause, Chas Veshalom, then that would mean that He IS affected by something other than Himself, as R’ Moshe Cordevero wrote in his Sefer Alimah, in the section called Ayin Kol – The All-Seeing Eye, Gate 1, Chapter 12. Refer there for more research.                                                                                                                                                                                                        
  5. The 5th essential principal is that Hashem has no body, nor does He function with physical powers. Hashem also doesn’t join or participate with anything else that exists. So therefore, this concept of distancing any materiality or physicality to Hashem, is one of those true principals that have been agreed upon by all of our Chachamim, Z”L. We’re compelled logically and from Tanach. However, not everybody understands what material qualities means, nor do they understand the meaning of spiritual simplicity. [When we say that Hashem does not have a body, people agree, but say that He is a spiritual being. People don’t understand the meaning of no material qualities, and question the meaning of spiritual simplicity. People may have some sort of a blended thought of what that might be, but don’t really understand what that means.] Therefore, I’d like to elaborate on this topic, in order to save you from making the same mistake that many people of our generation have made. Many people attempt to metaphorically compare Hashem to a great pure and shining light, or the like, because they see light as something that is not physical. [They use light as a way to draw comparisons to Hashem]. That is an essential blunder and a mistake, because although it’s true that light is one of the most intangible of all the things that we can sense, light is nevertheless still part of the physical world. And there’s no image that one can imagine, that does not have the appearance of physical qualities. [Therefore you cannot use it as a metaphor even though it doesn’t have a physical body attached to it.] As the Ari Z”LHH writes at the end of the Sefer Mavo Hashe’arim, Gate 6, Section 2, Chapter 10: “The human mind only has the capacity to imagine that which has some sort of a physical form and some materiality, but it cannot grasp that which is a spiritual format called Tzurah V’nefesh – form and Neshamah. {I.e.: The imagination can ONLY paint a picture of something that has physical and/or material attributes, regardless if it is physical or spiritual.} But through mans’ ability of abstract thinking, one CAN grasp the concept of Tzurah, but will associate materiality and a quantitative nature to it. However, this is specifically due to the power of imagination, which is a tool of abstract thinking, because abstract thinking alone would not associate any materiality or quantitative nature to it whatsoever.” [But whatever we’re using is still nevertheless an imagination that’s a tool of our intellect. Because our mind can only conceptualize that which has sequence and qualities that have some sort of physical association.] This concludes the summary of what The Ari says about this subject.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   So from this we can learn and understand the meaning of spiritual simplicity, and what it means when we say that something has material qualities to it. For the intellect CAN perceive something that’s simple because it’s abstract, and abstract comprehension is [not limited by materiality since it is] NOT physical. But the moment it moves into the imagination, it becomes physical. And therefore, there is no way to avoid making associations to the physical, because our imagination is a result of our physical being. So therefore, the mind will attribute physicality even to things that have no physical or material qualities within them, whatsoever. [Note: In the era of R’ Yosef Irgis, Sechel was defined as the power of the Neshamah (not the mind) to perceive, which gives us the capability of abstract thinking. They did not define Sechel as a process of the gray matter called our brain. They saw Sechel as a spiritual capacity to conceptualize. One of the Ramchals’ debates was between Sechel and the Neshamah. The Neshamah is what it is, and the Sechel is the capacity to conceptualize. Today, we comprehend thinking as the product of neurons in our brain moving around and making connections or associations, which are all physical occurrences.] {So what R’ Yosef Irgis is saying above, is that the intellect can perceive that which has no image, through abstract thinking. But once it hits our imagination, the mind automatically attributes physical qualities to it. Abstract thinking is fine unless one thinks too deeply into the subject. Once the mind starts to delve into the unknown, a picture begins to form. Once a picture is formed the imagination attributes physicality to it.}

As an example; abstract thinking can reason through deductive reasoning, that there are other forms of existence other than matter. However, if you try to imagine any of those other forms of existence in your mind, {such as anti-matter,} even if you purify your mind and refine your imagination to its loftiest purity, nevertheless, the imagination is still physical. And it’s not the same type of existence as Malachim, and not the same type of existence as Neshamos. Therefore, you cannot use your imagination for spiritual concepts because you WILL ultimately end up imagining things with physical attributes.

So be very careful when you start thinking about the Sefiros. Do not use your imagination to compare them because your imagination will lead you to attributing physicality or materiality to the Sefiros. That is an absolute mistake and a terrible transgression. However, if you use your intellect [the process of the Neshamah] to think about abstract concepts, you CAN imagine them as having the form of letters of the G-dly names, which you’re allowed to do. But if you use your imagination to imagine anything other than the letters themselves, you’ll end up attributing physical qualities to them. Imagining them as letters is something that abstract thought can use because the name of Hashem of Y-K-V-K is a guide to the inner secrets of any particular Sefirah as is understood from the Sefer Hakavonos [by the Ari Z”L]. And the same is written in the Sefer Alimah [by R’ Moshe Cordevero], in the section called Ayin Kol (The All-Seeing Eye), Section 1, Chapter 5.

However, when talking about The Infinite, you’re not even allowed to imagine any type of image whatsoever. Neither the image of letters nor any comparison, whatsoever. You can only use abstract thought [the process of the Neshamah] to conceptualize that there IS an abstract simplicity above and beyond all other abstract simplicity. And then above and beyond that is The Infinite, Y.S., of whom we know nothing about other than that He exists, and that His existence is imperative. Therefore be very careful when contemplating the existence of Hashem, that it be merely a momentary fleeting thought that you run towards and immediately withdraw. Run to embrace in your mind the obviousness of His existence, and immediately withdraw from additional contemplation to avoid building any sort of image or form whatsoever in your mind, for the imagination pursues abstract thinking. That’s why it says in the Sefer Yetzirah, Chapter 1, Mishna 8: “If your heart runs, return to the place.” [Once your heart is moving into a thought, you have to withdraw from it.] And be very careful with this concept because it’s one of the great essential principals of Emunah.

Additionally, part of this essential principal is that you’re not allowed to allow yourself to think that The Infinite has any sort of life force, Chas Veshalom. As the Ra’avad, Z”L wrote in the beginning of his introduction to his explanation on Sefer Yetzirah: “Let your soul be very careful because what I’m about to talk about is thoughts regarding the wisdom of understanding Hashem. Don’t allow the thought to enter your mind that there is any life force in the cause of all causes, Chas Veshalom. And anyone that thinks about saying such things has no part of the spiritual portion of Yisrael and His Torah.” It says the same thing in the section of the Zohar called Ra’aya Mehemnah, on Parshas Pinchas, Page 258a: “Just like you find that the Neshamah has power over all the limbs of the body, you can use a metaphor for this even though it’s not a comparison which is at its essence, because Hashem created it (the Neshamah), but there is no power that created Him. [So even if you would want to use the Neshamah as a metaphor, it’s still not right because the Neshamah was created, whereas nothing created Hashem.] And besides that, the Neshamah can be affected by changes, occurrences and causes, which is not so by the Master of everything. Because of this, you can imagine that the Neshamah has power over all the limbs of the body. But that’s the only thing that you can use to imagine, and do not extend the metaphor any more than that.” So we can understand from this that there is no comparison between the Neshamah and The Infinite, Baruch Hu, other than the comparison that the Neshamah has power over all the limbs of the body [the movements of the body]. Chazal list six specific essential types of affects over the body that the Neshamah has over us, which we are preoccupied trying to describe [that are really humanistic descriptions of attributes for the Sefiros]. But from a different perspective, you cannot use this to make any comparisons to Hashem, because the changes, occurrences and powers that CAN affect the Neshamah, are shortcomings that cannot be compared to The Infinite. You can’t even use them as a metaphor because there are no shortcomings by Hashem whatsoever. As the Mekubalim wrote; that The Infinite is complete perfection without any shortcoming.

However, the term that you’ll find being used in Sifrei Mekubalim when they talk about the functions of the Infinite and the Sefiros, is light. Not because they ARE light, but because as long as our intellect is still attached to our physical body, our power of abstract thinking is limited in the comprehension of the essence of spiritual existence. So therefore, we can’t imagine what spiritual functions are really like so that we can describe them with a true description. Therefore they classified them {spiritual functions} with the term “Light” to help us understand it, because light is the most intangible of all our senses.

Additionally, light has within it characteristics and concepts that we can use to draw comparisons to those levels of emanation. The first of them that we can use to draw a comparison, is that light is emanated from its source without ever being disconnected from it. [They’re referring to spiritual or philosophical light, not physical light, as we describe it.*] Because if the source were to be hidden, you would not see any light at all, which is not true when we talk about things that were created. Once something was created, even though it was disconnected from its source, it retains its own independent existence. For example; if you cut down a tree, and it’s disconnected from its roots, you’ll still end up with a dry piece of wood that came from that tree. And if the source of a wellspring should dry up, the water that previously came from that source is still around and doesn’t disappear. The same goes for wind/air. If you inflate a leather flask [or a balloon] with air, and tie the end really well, the air that’s inside will still remain there even though it’s been disconnected from the source that inflated it. But light is not the same, for if you close the window shutters {curtains/shades} from whence the sun’s rays entered the house, the light will instantly stop flowing into the house for it was separated from its source. So we understand from this that light as we use it, is always connected to its source and its cause, and is never disconnected from it. That’s why we can use light as a metaphor for the Sefiros, because they {the Sefiros} are coming out and being emanated from a G-dly source of light and are never separated from Him, Chas Veshalom. The emanated is forever connected to its source and the power of the Emanator is always within the emanated.

*[Here we need to take a step back from scientific description. WE understand light as energy that once it leaves its source, is disconnected. What they used was referred to as philosophical light, of which the light that’s emanated is always attached to its source. The radiance of the light was never disconnected from its source. The use of the metaphor of light is good because if we understand philosophical light, it emanates light, and the light never gets disconnected from its source. If you stop the source, the light will stop. They were not restricted by scientific descriptions as we are.]

There are additional comparisons that we can attribute to light in order to help us describe spiritual concepts. And they are:

B.  Light expands instantaneously and not in increments. [Again, they were not limited by the scientific principal of the speed of light. They perceived light as something that immediately extends itself and radiates.]
C.  Light [which represents the power of Hashem] immediately permeates all matter, regardless of its density or thickness. As long as it is translucent, light will pass through it, and nothing can hold it back.

D.  It never blends or becomes connected with what it’s passing through.

E.  It never changes nor is it affected by what it’s passing through. Even if light passes through a lens, which may be green, red, white or black; no color is actually captured, and the light itself never changes. The change of color that we observe when the light passes through the lens is not in the light. The light itself never changes its color. [If you pass a light through a colored lens, the light wave itself doesn’t change.]

F.  Light is also what makes the physical possible to exist, because through it, life can flourish. {I.e.: Life could not exist without light.*} The light makes it possible for vegetation to grow, as well as anything that lives. Generally speaking, light is what sustains everything that was ever created.

{ * Can the universe exist without light? *
( )
Answer: No light means no electromagnetic waves of any frequency since if they exist at a single frequency, you can always blue-shift or red-shift them by changing frame until they enter the visible spectrum. Electromagnetic waves are an unavoidable consequence of the electromagnetic interactions. Remember that Maxwell predicted them on the basis of his equations, and afterwards proposed that light was part of the spectrum. So no light means no electromagnetic interactions. In particular, no Coulomb forces. But that means no atoms, no molecules, no chemistry, no matter as we know it. No electromagnetic interactions mean no weak interactions as we know them for the SU2-X-U1 gauge theory would have to be replaced by something else (or nothing) since electromagnetism is an unavoidable consequence of it. So the slow process of hydrogen fusion which is the basis of stellar energy would not exist. Actually, much faster processes would replace it. Indeed, if things like (chargeless) protons and neutrons existed, they could rapidly fuse to make a monstrous nucleus without the limits in size that are imposed by the electromagnetic repulsion in our world. All baryons in the universe could collapse in a gigantic nucleus. Leptons would all be neutrino like. Maybe they could make a gigantic, unique, gravitational atom with the monster nucleus. We could figure that out easily. Apart from that, you could still have dark matter and dark energy and you could call that the universe. Clearly not one of the most hospitable kind. Note that in the landscape of the possible vacuum of string theory, you can certainly find many places corresponding to electroweakless theories. So if you believe in megaverse…but the adequate word here is really ‘believe’, I don’t consider it as a scientifically decidable possibility.
Um, contrary to what many people say here, the answer is NO. The Universe CANNOT exist, AS WE KNOW IT without light. It doesn’t matter if you mean “visible light only” or “all electromagnetic radiation”. The reason our Universe could not exist, is that light is an integral part of it. Our universe is not made up of separate, discrete things. It’s made of various types of intimately related matter and energy. In fact, matter and energy are constantly turning into one another. Atoms of matter give off light, and atoms and matter absorb light. But when an atom gives off light, it loses energy and ACTUALLY LOSES MASS. Because light and matter are two different aspects of the same thing. They readily turn into one another. So you cannot have one without the other, unless you had a Universe where there was matter that only remained at exactly the same energy level and never did anything at all. Also, light is made up of electromagnetic energy, which is itself, a part of the “weak force”, which is itself, postulated to be part of the “strong force”. Everything in our Universe is related to everything else, so you can’t really remove any part of it… because the rest cannot exist without it (at least in any recognizable form).
Light is just a tiny part of the electromagnetic spectrum. You could not eliminate light without eliminating all the other forms of radiation. Since radiation in whatever form is a fundamental property of matter, for it not to exist, neither would matter. So the universe as we know it would be impossible.}

Similarly, the Sefiros pass through all the different levels that come thereafter with much more exaltation and strength. The radiance of the Sefiros are never distorted, and their functions move through all the different levels of all the different worlds, and they sustain and fill all that which exists, spiritual and physical. And even though they are a fundamental part of that which they now exist, they’re really nothing like the physical embodiment that they’re in. Additionally, they are really what cause everything to exist and they direct all of the different levels in their parts, and their details. Nevertheless, they are continuously connected and never separated from that spiritual light source, which is the Infinite, Y.S.

G.  Another metaphor is that the nature of light is to illuminate everything according to its capacity to receive. As is well known, a dark item doesn’t receive as much light as one that is translucent. And there are other bodies that not only do not become illuminated, but actually become darker. There are also bodies that receive light due to their mass, and there are bodies that receive light that are tough or coagulated / jelled.

[So just like light appears to change based upon what it reaches, metaphorically speaking] the same thing occurs by the functions of the Sefiros. The changes that occur, are not in the function of the Sefirah per se’, but rather are based upon what the recipient [or what is being illuminated] can tolerate. As is written in the Zohar, Parshas Terumah, Page 176a: “We learned that all that which is Sefiros can only be described based upon OUR perspectives. But from our perspective we get to understand all of them. Because at the highest level they’re all part of one process, one measure. They do not change nor CAN they be changed. As it says: “I am G-d, I never change.” (Malachi 3:6). And in Medrash Tanchuma, Parshas Yisro, Siman 11, regarding the Possuk: “Hashem answered with a loud voice” (Shmos, 19:19), Chazal say that Moshe perceived that voice according to his potential, and Yisrael perceived it according to what they were capable of perceiving. So we see from this that if some things are influenced more than others, and some things change more than others, it’s based upon the recipient’s capability to tolerate it, and not because there was a change in the Sefirah at its source above.

So we find that we can really learn from everything that we just discussed. For since light can be metaphorically compared to the spiritual powers of creation in a few different ways, therefore it’s possible to use those descriptions to relate to the Sefiros and how they function as lights, as the Mekubalim did and wrote. And NOT that they meant to say that the Sefiros are light, because the Sefiros have no materiality Chas Veshalom; whereas we know that light IS matter {See * Can the universe exist without light? *, above}. See also in Sefer Alimah, in the section called Ayin Kol (“The All-Seeing Eye”), Tamar 6, Chapter 3; other comparisons and reasons that he brings there, with which to compare light as a metaphor for the Sefiros. Study there for more research.

6. The 6th essential principal is that Hashem sees but cannot be seen, which really means that we cannot grasp Hashem at all. Even though we can know that He exists, and that His existence is imperative, we nevertheless do not know what He is. As the Ari, Z”LHH, wrote in the Sefer “Adam Yashar” (“The Straight Man”), Column 1: “We know that the source of spiritual light is loftier than all loftiness, ad-infinitum, which is called the Infinite. The name “Infinite” or “No-End” itself is self-descriptive, for there is no way to grasp it neither by thought nor by contemplation at all. And He is truly divested and separate from all thought, etc.” So we see here specifically stated that there is no thought process that can comprehend or grasp the Infinite. Even the Sefiros themselves don’t have a clue as to the substance of His essence. And just like people do not perceive the essence of the Neshamah that is within them, but know that the Neshamah does influence them; so too the Sefiros do not perceive the essence of the Infinite, but are to the Infinite like the relationship of the body is to the Neshamah. They know that their power and their influence comes from Him, but they still can only recognize Him through His actions. This is an essential principal of our belief, that there is no one that can ever know His true essence, except for He Himself. The reason for that is because if we were to say that His true essence is known, that would assert limits and boundaries within Him. {If a finite being would be capable of comprehending the Infinite, that would mean that the Infinite is really NOT infinite. A finite being cannot fathom nor comprehend an infinite being.} We also cannot break down this concept into different fragments and say that PART of His essence can be understood by something other than Himself, because that would compel a multiplicity of His essence that has different levels, part of which we can grasp and part of which we cannot. But Hashem Y.S., has neither parts nor different aspects, but is rather a simple Oneness that is the purest of simplicities. Therefore if we were to say that we could know a part of Hashem, then we would be able to understand everything. And if one can grasp part of Him, then one can grasp ALL of Him. And both of those are unacceptable. This is also what it says in the Tikunei Zohar, Page 17a: “Master of the world, You are One, but not a numerical One. You are the loftiest of all that is lofty, the most hidden of all that is hidden, and no thought can grasp You at all. Etc.” And in the Zohar Chadash, Parshas Yisro, Page 55; it says: “No thought process can contemplate Him, and there is not a single mind that can understand and grasp Him, etc. He is capable of encompassing all thought, but no thought can know Him, etc.” Study there for more research.

And if you’ll say that in [the section of the Zohar known as] the Ra’aya Mehemnah, on Parshas Bo, Page 42; it says that the reason why Hashem needed to emanate the emanated worlds, was so that we would be able to know His attributes. And from that expression it would be understood that we COULD know and grasp His essence through the means of the Sefiros. You definitely cannot say that, because when they said that the reason why Hashem made this happen is so that we can know Him, they didn’t mean to know His essence. For His essence is hidden and cannot be grasped neither after the world was already created, the same as it couldn’t be grasped before creation. But [what the Zohar meant to say was that] we can grasp a little bit of His greatness through observing His actions. Because through the process of Atzilus – Emanation, the power of His greatness, and the intervention of His power throughout all the worlds, and how He directs all of creation, is revealed and understood. For through the Sefiros, the Infinite can make change appear, and Hashem intervenes and makes many things happen, which does not affect Him at all, Chas Veshalom. [No change takes place in Him.] That could not happen without the emanation of the Sefiros. The same goes for many different aspects of the Torah that can only be ascertained using the tools of Torah itself. As we have seen by the philosophers, that because they distanced multiplicity, change and actions from the Infinite; Hashem’s true G-dliness was hidden from them, they denied His involvement and direction, and other things that are not even worth committing to print. Unlike Klal Yisrael who believe in the existence of the Sefiros, because through the Sefiros, the principals of Torah and its many facets will be justified and understood. And this is why Chazal said, that Atzilus [the process of emanation of the Sefiros] was necessary so that we can know Him. For even His actions and His Divine Intervention are incomprehensible and could not be revealed without the means of the Sefiros, as we mentioned earlier.

However, the comprehension of His essence is concealed from both higher and lower forms of existence. Anything created can only comprehend His actions at best. The whole process of Keser [which we spoke about in the first dialogue] is able to contemplate and comprehend itself, and that which is caused by it, through the means of the power of the Infinite that acts through it. Everything else that exists as well, can only comprehend the Infinite through His actions. And there’s nothing else that can truly grasp the actual actions and their true source, as well as the originator of those actions Himself. And beyond that, the level of comprehension decreases according to the descent of the different levels of existence, and therefore the ability to understand the imperativeness of His existence becomes either greater or smaller. The reason for that is because WE can understand the imperativeness of His existence through one or two proofs, whereas the Malachim are able to affirm the imperativeness of His existence through 100 proofs. The level above the Malachim is able to affirm it through 1,000 proofs, and the level above that is able to affirm it through 100,000 proofs. And besides that, WE affirm the proof of His existence through the power that sustains matter, which is the lowest of the wondrous, higher levels. And the higher levels are able to affirm the proof of His existence through the amazing levels that are higher and more exalted than they are. Therefore, the strength of the bond of their belief in Hashem becomes more permanent. A powerful bond with an impressive yearning. And they’re able to treasure this concept to its ultimate sensitivity.

So we therefore find that even though we [Mankind, Malachim and the Sefiros] are somewhat equal in that we have a common level of overall Emunah, that we know that there is a G-d, we’re nevertheless not all equal in the imperativeness of this knowledge. One [Mankind] that merely recognizes the finite universe and other physical creations only, and proves the existence of a power that sustains them by observing them, cannot be compared to one [Malachim or Sefiros] that recognize the specifics of the creations of the world or level of Asiyah – Action, the world or level of Yetzirah – Formation, the world or level of Briyah – Creation, and the world or level of Atzilus – Emanation. And through them, the imperativeness of His existence, Y.S., becomes compelling, because it in itself will compel us with an amazing compelling force.

Nevertheless, to comprehend His essence and what He is, cannot be grasped at all. The Ramak, Z”LHH, already gave a lengthy discourse on this subject in the Sefer Alimah, in the section called Ayin Kol (“The All-Seeing Eye”), Tamar 1, Chapter 3; and the same thing was written by all the remaining Mekubalim, Z”LHH.

So I have hereby proven all of the six essential principals written in the Zohar, that we started off with. So now, my dear friend She’altiel, inscribe them on the tablets of your heart, for they are great essential principals that anyone that desires to accept the special yoke of Shamayim must believe in. And anyone that rejects any one of them has no part of the G-d of Klal Yisrael and His Torah. Therefore you need to master those principals and all the conclusions that can be drawn from them.

Copyright © 2015 Shaul Taub





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