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177) “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.” The friends interpreted it to the ministering angels saying this verse to the Creator. Rabbi Shimon told them, “Since the angels know the present and what was to be, they knew that the man would sin, so why did they want to make the man, for they said, ‘Let us make man’?”
178) Moreover, the angels Aza and Azael were slandering the creation of man, since when Divinity told the Creator, “Let us make man,” they said, “What is man, that You should know him?” Why do You wish to create the man when You know that he will sin before You with his wife, who is darkness, since light is the male and darkness is female, who is from the left line, considered darkness of Beria?
After the Gadlut of ZON that they obtained during the six days of creation, when they rose and clothed upper AVI, ZON elicited Adam HaRishon. The order of his creation was first in Katnut, then in Gadlut, the same as all the works of creation came out. In the verses, “Let there be light,” “Let there be a firmament,” “Let there be lights,” the diminutions that brought the Katnut came out. In the verse, “And there was light,” “And God made the firmament,” “And God made the two [great] lights,” their Gadlut came out, returning the letters ELEH.
Similarly, here in the verse, “Let us make man,” there was a diminution where the Nukva lowered her letters ELEH to BYA, by which the Nukva diminished into VAK without a Rosh, and with her all the angels, who are her hosts. In the verse, “And God created the man,” the Gadlut came out.
The friends said that He called the groups over groups of high angels, sat them before Him, and told them, “I wish to create a man.” That is, the ZON were diminished into VAK, and with them all the angels of above when He wished to create the man. They implied it in the words “Sat them before Him,” since sitting indicates diminution of level, for the level is complete only during standing, but in sitting, the level shortens. Thus, all the angels were diminished into VAK without a Rosh.
This is why all the angels were excited and asked about the nature of this man for whom You have diminished us. He told them, “The man, who was created in our image, his wisdom will be greater than your wisdom.” That is, once the ZON return the letters ELEH to their degree, the worlds BYA will rise along with them to Atzilut, and the man will attain NRN de Atzilut, which is immensely higher than the angels. Then all the angels will rise thanks to him to Atzilut, as it truly was on the sixth day prior to the sin. And when the angels heard it, they immediately agreed to his creation.
This is why the friends said that the angels themselves agreed and said, “Let us make man” in this verse, since the Creator told them that through him, they will all attain ascension to Atzilut. And Rabbi Shimon told them about it, “Since they knew what was to be, that he would sin and would lose all the Mochin de Atzilut once more, and would fall back to BYA, and all the angels with him, why did they agree to make the man, since they would lose more than they had gained at the time?
“Moreover, Aza and Azael were slandering the creation of the man. The angels knew that they would sin, so Aza and Azael promptly slandered and announced that the man would sin. Still, all the angels agreed. At that time Divinity said to them, ‘That thing that you are slandering, you will fall by it,’ as it is written, ‘And the sons of God saw the daughters of the man that they were good, and took for them women from all that they chose,’ and Divinity dropped them from their Kedusha.
“And why did Aza and Azael not agree with man’s creation, as did all the high angels? All the Mochin de Gadlut that come out during the 6,000 years are not from GAR de AB, but from VAK de AB. Know that those angels, Aza and Azael, extend from Achoraim of the inner AVI that operated in Nekudim, who are GAR de AB that were concealed and do not appear during the 6,000 years.
“It therefore follows that this reply that the Creator replied to all the high angels, that the man, who is created in our image, his wisdom will be greater than your wisdom, for which they all agreed to be diminished during the saying, ‘Let us make man,’ that reply was not at all sufficient for Aza and Azael because since their essence is from GAR de AB, then all the great Mochin of Adam HaRishon, even the Mochin from before the sin, do not belong to their essence at all, for they were all only from VAK de AB. For this reason, they would not gain anything by the man’s creation, which is why they were unlike all the high angels and slandered the creation of the man because they did not want to be diminished for his creation.
“They increased their slandering even more after he sinned. After the Creator created the man and he sinned, Aza and Azael came before the Creator and said, ‘We have something to say to You: The man that You have made sinned before You.’ Because of their slandering, the man was delayed in his repentance, which is why it was said, ‘That thing that you are slandering, you will fall by it,’ for because of your slandering the man will be deprived of repenting right after the sin, and the daughters of the man will come out uncorrected, and you will eventually fornicate after them.”
179) The friends told him: “Rabbi, in the end, Aza and Azael did not lie in their words. Divinity should have replied to them, at least answer their slandering because it was true that the man would sin because of the Nukva, as Aza and Azael said, for it is written, ‘The woman whom You have given with me gave me of the tree and I ate.’”
He replied to them: “So said Divinity: ‘You, Aza and Azael, came to slander before me more than all the hosts of above. If you were better than the man in your deeds, you would be right to slander him. But the man will sin with only one woman, and you with many women. Thus, your sins are more numerous than the sins of people, as it is written, ‘And the sons of the God saw the daughters of the man that they were good.’ It did not say, ‘The daughter of the man,’ but ‘The daughters of the man,’ many daughters. Moreover, Adam sinned, and I have already prepared for him repentance to correct what he had sinned, since repentance preceded the world. But to angels, repentance does not help at all.’”
Divinity gave them two answers: 1) It is not for you to slander whatsoever because you are worse than the man. 2) If the man should sin, I have prepared for him the correction of repentance in advance, and he will correct what he had sinned.
180) The friends replied to him: “Why then is all that? Meaning, if the whole reason for the creation of man is that he can repent and correct his corruption, then what is all that for? It would have been better not to create the darkness in the Nukva, and the man would not sin to begin with.”
Rabbi Shimon replied to the friends: “Were it not so, that the Creator created the good inclination and the evil inclination, which are light and darkness, there would not be Mitzvot and transgressions for Adam de Beria. But Adam [the man] was created from both, from light and darkness, which is why the writing says, “See, I have set before you this day life and good, and death and evil,” meaning this is why there are Mitzvot and transgressions in man, and the choice has been prepared for him, to choose between good and evil.”
They replied to him: “What is all that for? It would be better if the darkness were not created and there would not be reward or punishment for man, rather than being created, sinning, and causing all those many corruptions that he has caused by his sin.”
181) He said to them, “It was right to create him in light and in darkness because the Torah was created for the man, for punishment to the wicked and reward for the righteous are written in it, and there cannot be reward and punishment unless in Adam de Beria, who consists of light and darkness, as it is written, ‘He created it not a waste, He formed it to be inhabited.’ That is, the world was not created to be in chaos, in darkness, for the wicked. Rather, ‘He formed it to be inhabited,’ to give a good reward to the righteous.
“The reward is the obtainment of the Torah, as it is written, ‘For the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord,’ since the Torah and the Creator are one. And if the man were not created in light and darkness, in which choice between good and bad and reward and punishment are possible, it would not be possible for that good reward that is received in the Torah, and for which it was created, to be revealed to the righteous.”
The friends told him: “Indeed, we heard now what we have not heard thus far. Now it is clear that the Creator did not create something that He does not need.”
182) Moreover, the Torah de Beria, in whom there are light and darkness, reward and punishment, is a clothing of Divinity. If man were not destined to be created, Divinity would be without a clothing like one who is poor without clothes. Because of that, anyone who sins is as though he stripped the clothes from Divinity, and this is the punishment of the sinful person.
183) Anyone who keeps the Mitzvot of the Torah, it is as though he dresses Divinity with her clothes. This is why they interpreted the verse that is said about the Talit [a prayer shawl] and the Tzitzit [the “fringe” attached to four-cornered garments, including the Talit], “For that is his only covering, it is his garment for his skin; in what shall he lay?” This relates to the exile, for then Divinity was stripped from her clothes by Israel’s sins and it was said about her, “In what shall he lay?”
The darkness of Beria is darkness of Ima, ZAT de Bina, clothing AA from his Chazeh to the Tabur. They are called “lower AVI.” It was said above that upper Ima had an appellation whose number is 86, like the number of Elokim, and that appellation is light and darkness. And because of that darkness in that appellation, Aba said that Adam de Beria would sin, as Adam de Beria is the light of the upper clothing.
The darkness of Beria, which makes Adam de Beria sin, is the appellation of upper Ima. The darkness of Ima is a clothing for the upper light because that darkness is done through the ascent of the restricted Malchut to the place of Bina, Ima, and the letters ELEH, Bina and TM de Ima, descended to the place of the Nukva. Also, Bina and TM de Nukva descend to NRN of people, and Ima remains in MI de Elokim, KH de Kelim and VAK without a Rosh of lights. Also, the Nukva was darkened in VAK without a Rosh, and she is the darkness that was created in the appellation of Ima.
However, Ima did that on purpose, since by raising MAN from the Torah and good deeds of the lower ones, Ima then returns her letters ELEH and the name Elokim is completed in her. Also, the Nukva, who clothed the letters ELEH, rises with them to Ima, returns her letters ELEH, and the name Elokim is completed in her, as well. Then NRN of people also rise with the letters ELEH of the Nukva to the place of Ima, where they receive the Mochin in Ima.
Therefore, these letters ELEH are considered the upper clothing since they rise from the place of the lower one to the upper one, clothing the upper one once more, as they were prior to their fall to the place of the lower one. This is why the Mochin that the lower one receives upon his ascent with them to the upper one is called “light of the upper clothing,” since he receives the light through those letters ELEH that returned and became clothing for the upper one.
It was said above that people cannot receive the upper light unless through clothing. It was said that Adam de Beria would sin, that he is a light for the upper clothing because if the lower ones corrupt their works, the upper Zivug stops and the letters ELEH de ZON fall to BYA once again, to the place of Klipot. The letters ELEH de Ima fall to the place of ZON, and the darkness in the upper ones comes out again, since they return to VAK without a Rosh. Thus, the man causes diminution and blemish to Adam de Beria because he receives the light of the upper clothing, and through the sin the clothing—the letters ELEH—returns and he falls into the Klipot.
The Torah de Beria is a clothing of Divinity, since the Torah and good deeds in which Adam de Beria engages elevate the letters ELEH of Divinity from BYA to Atzilut and become her clothing. Also, Ima returns her letters ELEH with the Nukva, raises them to her place, and receives the great Mochin in the place of Ima. Thus, the Torah de Beria becomes a clothing for Divinity.
It was said that repentance preceded the world. It is so because the world had to be created in the darkness of Beria, to lower the letters ELEH from the degrees, which causes darkness in the world. The man sinned because of the darkness, and repentance had been prepared for him. Through the repentance, he returns the letters ELEH, and the light—which is the purpose of creation—is extended to the world.
If the man were not destined to be created and there would not be the matter of raising the letters ELEH from BYA to Atzilut, Divinity would be without clothes, like a poor man, without the great Mochin de Ima, for by raising her letters ELEH from BYA she can rise to Ima with the letters ELEH de Ima and receive the Mochin from her. If the man were not created, the Nukva would not have Mochin and she would be considered poor. Thus, all the clothes of the Nukva are only because of the darkness of Ima, which is the darkness of Beria.
Darkness is the black in the Torah, the ink in her letters. Light is the white in the Torah, the parchments on which the letters are written. When the light clothes in darkness, it is written about the Torah, “I am black and beautiful.” When the light—the white in the Torah—departs there, the Torah says, “Do not see me that I am swarthy.”
ZA is called “Torah.” His Mochin are the light of Torah, the white in her. The clothes of the Mochin, the darkness of Ima, are the letters ELEH de Ima, the black in the Torah. When the Mochin de Ima clothe in darkness—the letters ELEH in her—ZA says, “I am black and beautiful,” since those clothes are the reason for all his Mochin. But when the light departs from the clothes and the clothes fall from Ima once again, as do the clothes of ZON, their letters ELEH fall to BYA once again. Then ZA, the Torah, says, “Do not see me that I am swarthy,” since then the Klipot cling to his black, as he is in BYA and devoid of light.
If he is rewarded, it becomes a potion of life to him, since all the Mochin of one who engages in Torah extend to him through the black in the Torah, and the black becomes clothing over the white.
If he is not rewarded, it becomes a potion of death to him because then the Mochin depart from their clothes and the clothes fall into the Klipot and become a potion of death to him.
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