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296) “And all the people saw the voices”—of the illumination of those voices. It should have said, “Heard.” However, those voices were engraved in a darkness of cloud and mist, and were seen in them as a body is seen, seeing what is seen and hearing what is heard out of these darkness, mist, and cloud. Out of that vision that they saw, they would shine with high illumination and know what the generations following them did not know.
297) They all saw the illumination of these voices face-to-face. That is, there was not a voice that did not shine in illumination, that they were seeing all that was hidden in it, all that was concealed, and all the generations until the arrival of the Messiah King. This is why it is written, “And all the people saw the voices,” actually seeing.
298) In the illumination of these voices, they saw what the other last generations did not see. “The voices” means as it is written, “I saw the Lord.” It does not say, “I saw the Lord” [in Hebrew it is without the “the”], but “Et [the] Lord,” which means that he saw Divinity, who is called Et [the]. Here, too, “And all the people saw the voices,” relating to the seeing of Divinity, as well.
299) Similarly, it is written, “The heaven and the earth,” since the word Et [the] in the Torah was given for looking at Hochma. It is like “Honor your father and your mother” [in Hebrew there is Et next to both], “Honor the Lord from your wealth,” and all are required to include in them another thing. Here, too, “The voices” includes that other voice, below, Malchut, who gathers those voices and what comes out of them into it.
In it, in Malchut, they see and observe the higher wisdom of all the upper secrets, and all the hidden and concealed secrets that were not revealed to the last generations following, nor to the generations that will come to the world until the time of the arrival of the Messiah King. It is written about it, “For they will see with their own eyes when the Lord restores Zion,” and it is written, “And the torches,” for after the lightning flashes were established in their corrections, to show, they are called “torches.”
300) “And the sound of the Shofar.” It is written, “Once God has spoken; twice I have heard this.” It is written, “I the Lord,” and it is written, “And you shall not have.” “I” is Bina. “And you shall not have” is ZA. Both were heard at once. Here, too, a voice is ZA, and the Shofar is Bina, and both were heard at once.
301) Why does it say, “The voice of the Shofar” and not “A voice in the Shofar”? Rather, it is a voice that is called Shofar, as it is written, “You shall then sound a ram’s horn [Shofar] abroad on the tenth day of the seventh month,” on Yom Kippur [day of atonement]. On Yom Kippur, Bina, it is called “a Shofar.” That is, if the voice comes out of Bina, the voice is called Shofar.
302) The corporeal Shofar makes a sound that consists of fire, wind, and water. Here, too, everything is included in the voice that comes out of the Shofar—fire, wind, and water, which are HGT, the three lines. Also, other voices come out of that voice.
303) “The voice of the Shofar” means a voice that comes out of a Shofar. A Shofar is single, and the voice that comes out of it is single. The voice is ZA and the Shofar is Bina. Also, the Shofar exists regardless of the voice that comes out of it, and it is written about it, “The voice of the Shofar,” and not “A voice in the Shofar.”
304) “The voice of the Shofar.” Shofar is written without a Vav [in Hebrew], a word of glory and beauty, implying to ZA, Tifferet.
305) The place from which the voice comes out is called Shofar. The voice is ZA and the Shofar is Bina, ZA coming out of Bina. The voice of the Shofar is the place of the sound, as it is written, “Man lives by everything that comes out of the mouth of the Lord.” “What comes out of the mouth of the Lord” is the voice of the Shofar, greater than all the other lower voices and stronger than them. It is written, “And the voice of the Shofar was very loud.” It does not say “very loud” about any of the other voices.
Everything depends on that voice of the Shofar, which is called “a great sound,” as it is written, “With a great voice, and He added no more.” It is also called, “A sound of a gentle silence,” the light of the light, which is pure and fine, and refines and shines for all.
306) Silence is when one must keep silent because of one’s fear, and close one’s mouth. Silence is keeping quiet so it is not heard outside. “When the people saw it, they feared and stood at a distance,” since they saw what they saw and they were afraid.
307) Ezekiel saw the Gevurot [plural of Gevura] of the conducts of the Creator, as it is written, “And I looked, behold, a stormy wind was coming from the north, a great cloud, and a blazing fire, and a bright light around it.” “A stormy wind” is to break the four Malchuts. It is a great wind that awakened in the conducts of Gevura above. It comes from the north, north with the emphasized “the,” pointing to a Ruach that is known above, covered and concealed above, implying to Malchut de Midat ha Din, covered and concealed in the GAR of each degree.
308) “A great cloud, and a blazing fire.” “Blazing” means that it was gripping, yet not gripping to it, gripping its sides, to evoke the Din, sucking harsh Din three times a day with the high engravings from the side of Gevura, and a blazing fire, to awaken in the world.
Malchut of the harsh Midat ha Din [quality of judgment] is called “fire.” The first nine are clean of any Din. But when Malchut rose to Bina and was mitigated in Midat ha Rachamim [quality of mercy], the Din in Malchut gripped the Bina in all the Sefirot. Also, it is a “blazing fire” before it ignited above, in Bina, and this Malchut that rose to Bina governs in the three lines of ZA. This is why it was said that three times a day, meaning three lines of ZA, who is called “day,” he sucks harsh Din in the engraving of the upper Sefirot, above Malchut, on the side of Gevura, on the left side. However, at the time of Gadlut, Bina is completely purified from Malchut’s Dinim, hence by the force of the middle line, she is not completely purified. For this reason, on the one hand there is GAR there, and on the other hand there is only VAK de GAR there.
309) “A bright light around it,” mitigating the blazing fire in Bina, since that brightness, Hochma, surrounds it on all sides, mitigating and correcting it so it will not be harsh Din and people will be able to tolerate it.
310) “And in its midst was something like electrum from within the fire.” “In its midst” means from its insides. “Electrum” means speaking animals of fire, considered ZON PBP [Panim be Panim (face-to-face)], at which time they are called “voice” and “speech,” hence they are speaking.
311) HASHMAL [electrum] means Lev [heart] for fire, Lamed–Bet (32) paths of Hochma, the vitality of Bina—the blazing fire. It is written, “Something like electrum,” and it does not write merely “electrum,” since it implies to light of Hochma, which is called “eye.” “From within the fire” means in the inside of the fire. “Something like electrum” is after four degrees: stormy wind, great cloud, blazing fire, brightness around it, “And in its midst was something like electrum,” out of the blazing fire, Bina and not out of the brightness.
This is so because they are five degrees: “stormy wind” is Malchut; “great cloud” is ZA; “blazing fire” is Bina; “brightness around it” is Hochma on the right, which corrects Bina; “and in its midst was something like electrum” is the light of Hochma from Bina that returns to Hochma, who is called “32 paths of Hochma.” “In its midst” does not mean from within the brightness, but from within the blazing fire. It follows that the electrum is a fourth degree, and “brightness around it” is the fifth degree. The HASHMAL [electrum] appears after these four degrees because once the brightness corrects the blazing fire, the HASHMAL appears.
312) Here Israel saw what Ezekiel, son of Buzi, did not see, and all clung to the honored upper Hochma. Israel saw five degrees of voices on Mount Sinai, and in those five degrees was the Torah given. The fifth degree is the voice of the Shofar. Opposite them, Ezekiel saw five degrees that are outside those five voices, and they are stormy wind, great cloud, blazing fire, brightness around it, and something like the electrum.
313) It is written about Israel, “The Lord spoke to you face to face.” It is written in Ezekiel, “Something like electrum … And out of its midst came the likeness.” “Something like” and “Likeness” are as one who is looking behind many walls, like a person who is looking behind a wall. What Israel saw, no other prophet saw. It is all the more so with what Moses saw, no other prophet saw. Happy is he, as it is written about him, “And he was there with the Lord,” which is an illuminating mirror, and not another mirror, which does not illuminate, as it is written, “In a vision and not in riddles.” But a mirror that does not shine is a vision, in riddle.
314) “Once there was the word of the Lord to Ezekiel.” It was a prophecy for a time, which is why it is written, “Once.” It came to exist, for it had to be for Israel to know that the Creator had not left them, and that wherever they dispersed in the exile, He was with them.
315) “Once there was” means that he saw and did not see, that he stood in those words and did not stand. This is why it is written, “And I saw something like electrum,” and it is not written, “And I saw electrum.” However, in regard to Israel, it is written, “All the people saw the voices,” meaning that each and everyone saw as befitted him.
316) Each and everyone stood row by row, boundary by boundary, and each of them saw as befitted him. The heads of the people stood alone; the heads of the tribes stood alone; the females stood alone. Five degrees stood to the right, and five degrees to the left, as it is written, “You stand today, all of you, before the Lord your God: your chiefs, your tribes, your elders, and your officers, every man of Israel.” Thus, five degrees to the right, and five degrees to the left: “Your children, your women, and the stranger who is within your camps, from the one who chops your wood to the one who draws your water.”
317) All those degrees were established as above. Corresponding to them, Israel inherited an everlasting inheritance—the ten commandments—upon which all the Mitzvot [commandments] and all the merits depend, as well as all the inheritance of their lot, which are the good part of Israel.
318) When the Creator appeared on Mount Sinai, all of Israel saw, as one who sees light with a lantern. With that light, each and everyone saw what Ezekiel the prophet did not see. A lantern is a lamp whose walls are made of glass and a candle burns within it.
319) The reason is that those upper voices appeared as one, as it is written, “And all the people saw the voices.” But in Ezekiel, Divinity appeared in her Merkavot [chariots/assemblies] and not more, and he saw as one sees behind many walls.
320) Happy is Moses, of whom it is written, “And the Lord came down on Mount Sinai … and the Lord called Moses.” Happy is the generation in which it is written, “The Lord will come down on Mount Sinai before the eyes of all the people.”
321) “On His right was a fiery law,” for He appeared from the right. On Sinai was the head and the body of the king, as it is written, “He bowed the heavens and came down,” since before that, it is written, “Smoke went up out of His nostrils, fire from His mouth devoured.” Thus, there is a head here, of which it is written “nostrils” and “mouth.” And where there is a head there is a body. But in Ezekiel it is written, “And there the hand of the Lord came upon him,” meaning that a hand appeared and not a body. And even in the hand there is the upper hand of the Creator, ZA, and there is the lower hand of the Creator, Malchut, who is called “a hand.” What was revealed to him was the lower hand.
322) It is written, “The heavens were opened and I saw visions of God.” “Visions” is written without a Vav [in Hebrew] to show that he was speaking about Divinity, and that Divinity was not everything. The King’s head is not like the King’s legs, which is Divinity, clothing Him from the Chazeh and below, which is called “His legs,” although it is all in the King’s body.
323) It is written about Isaiah, “And I saw the Lord.” Divinity is called Et [the]. In regard to Ezekiel, it is written, “And I saw visions of God.” Here “the” is Divinity and there “visions” is Divinity because what Isaiah saw, Ezekiel saw—only Divinity. Happy is Moses, for there was never a prophet as whole as him, who saw in the illuminating mirror, who is ZA.
324) “And I saw the Lord.” “The” is Divinity. “And I saw the visions of God.” “Visions” is Divinity. Isaiah and Ezekiel were on the same degree, so why did Isaiah not interpret as Ezekiel interpreted? Isaiah included and Ezekiel interpreted. What is the reason that Ezekiel interpreted so? All that Ezekiel interpreted was to be for Israel, so they would know the love that the Creator loves them, that Divinity and her Merkavot [chariot/assemblies] are coming to dwell among them in exile.
325) It is written, “In the land of the Chaldeans.” But it is written, “But the land of the Chaldeans—this is the people which was not.” Why did Divinity appear there? Can it be that it was good for Israel for Divinity to be among them and not be revealed? However, had it not appeared, they would not have known that Divinity was among them.
326) And where it did appear, it is written, “By the river Chebar,” on water, a place that is not defiled and in which there is no Tuma’a [impurity]. That river was one of four rivers that come out of Eden, as it is written, “By the river Chebar,” meaning it was already [Hebrew: Kevar] from the place where Divinity is on it. And it is written, “And there the hand of the Lord came upon him,” and not elsewhere.
327) “Within it was the likeness of four animals.” There are four animals in the holy palace, Bina. They are the first, elders, which extend from holy Atik. They are the whole of the holy name HaVaYaH. Yod is a lion; the first Hey is an ox, Vav is an eagle, and the bottom Hey is man. They are three lines and Malchut who receives them.
Ezekiel saw only the likeness of the upper Merkavot because he saw them from a place that does not shine so much, in the world of Yetzira. As there is above, in Bina, so there is below them, in ZON. And so it is in all the worlds BYA: all are gripped to one another and all that there is in the upper world exists in the lower world. He saw them in the world of Yetzira.
328) Can it be that he saw them higher than the world of Yetzira? Rather, Moses saw from the illuminating mirror, ZA, and all the prophets saw only out of a mirror that does not illuminate, as it is written, “And I saw the visions of God” without a Vav [in Hebrew], which is Malchut. It is also written, “If there is a prophet among you, I, the Lord, shall make Myself known to him in a mirror. …Not so, with My servant Moses, he is faithful in all My house.” It is also written, “With him I speak mouth to mouth.”
329) All the prophets compared to Moses are as a female compared to a male, as it is written, “With him I speak mouth to mouth, in a vision, and not in riddles,” which is the illuminating mirror. It is written about the rest of the prophets, “I … shall make Myself known to him in a mirror,” a mirror that does not illuminate, meaning a mirror and not mirrors, without a Vav. It is all the more so with Ezekiel, for even a mirror is not written regarding him, but mirrors without a Vav, which he saw in the world of Yetzira. It is all the more so about what is written of Moses, “Not in riddles,” but every word completely clear. Happy is the generation that this prophet was among them.
330) Israel saw the brightness of the glory of their King face-to-face, and there were no blind or crippled or amputated of hands or deaf among them. No blind means as it is written, “And all the people saw.” No crippled means as it is written, “And they stood at the bottom of the mount.” No amputated of hands and deaf, as it is written, “We shall do and we shall hear.” And in the future, it is written, “Then he will leap as a lame deer and the tongue of a mute shall sing.”
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