My Beloved Is Mine and I Am His, He Pastures among the Lilies

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358) Woe unto people who do not watch and do not know. When a thought came before the Creator to create His world, all the worlds rose in one thought, and in that thought they were all created, as it is written, “In wisdom have You made them all.” And in that thought, which is wisdom [Hochma], this world and the world above were created.

359) His right [side] leaned and He created the world above, ZA. His left [side] leaned and He created this world, Malchut, as it is written, “My hand has laid the foundation of the earth,” Malchut, “And My right hand has spread out the heavens,” ZA. “When I call unto them, they stand up together.”

All were created in a single moment, and He made this world corresponding to the world above, and all that there is above, its likeness appeared below. Thus, there is nothing below without a root in the upper worlds, and all that there is below on earth, its likeness exists in the sea, and all is one. In the upper worlds, He created the angels; in this world, He created people; and in the sea, He created the leviathan [whale], as it is written, “To join the tent together so that it might be one.”

360) It is written of man that He made man in the image of God. It is also written, “You have made him a little lower than God.” If people so cherish their deeds and they are lower than the dust of the well, for they are lowered by the Klipot that cling to the dust of Malchut, called “well,” how will they come to pump out abundance from the well? He chose the upper ones, the angels, and He chose Israel. He did not call the upper ones, “sons,” but called the lower ones, “sons,” as it is written, “You are the children of the Lord your God.” He called them “children,” and they called Him “Father,” as it is written, “For You are our father,” and it is written, “My Beloved is mine and I am His,” meaning He chose me and I chose Him.

361) “He pastures among the lilies.” He pastures among the lilies despite the thorns, the Klipot around them. No other can pasture in the lilies like Him. “He pastures among the lilies.” As this rose is red and its waters, which are melted out of it, are white, the Creator leads His world from the quality of Din, implied in the red, to the quality of Rachamim, implied in the white, as it is written, “Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow.”

362) Rabbi Abba was walking along the way and Rabbi Isaac was with him. While they were walking, they came across roses. Rabbi Abba took a rose in his hand and was walking. Rabbi Yosi met them and said, “Divinity must be here,” and I see a rose in Rabbi Abba’s hand, which is to learn much wisdom from him, for I know that Rabbi Abba took it only to show wisdom.”

363) Rabbi Abba said, “Sit down my son.” They sat. Rabbi Abba smelled that rose and said, “The world exists only by the smell,” the Mochin of illumination of Hochma that shine from below upwards, like the smell. “I see that the soul exists only on the smell,” which is why we smell the myrtle at the end of the Sabbath, to extend Mochin of illumination of Hochma, smell.

364) He started and said, “My Beloved is mine and I am His, He pastures among the lilies.” Who caused me to be my Beloved’s and my Beloved to be mine? It is because He leads His world with roses. As a rose has a smell and is red, when it melts, it turns to white, but its smell never goes away. So is the Creator: He leads His world in this way. Otherwise, the world would not persist because of the sinful man.

The sinful is called “red,” as it is written, “Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow.” Also, the sinner offers his sacrifice to the fire, which is red. He throws the blood, which is red, around the altar, and the quality of Din that is implied in the red. It melts when the offering burns on the altar and the smoke that rises is all white. Then the red turns to white, implying that the quality of Din has been turned into the quality of Rachamim.

365) The whole of the quality of Din needs its scent only from the side of the redness, since the smell, illumination of Hochma, does not extend from the side of the white—right line, which is all Hassadim—but from the side of the red, left line, from which comes Hochma, the point of Shuruk. It is written, “And cut themselves according to their custom … until the blood gushed out on them.” And yet, they knew that they would not obtain their wish from the quality of Din, meaning Malchut, to extend Hochma from above downwards, as is the wish of all idolaters. Rather, it is only in redness, through the left line, which is red. This is why they “Cut themselves … with swords … until the blood gushed out on them,” to extend the redness.

366) Moreover, red and white—left and right—approach the world and the smell rises from the both of them, since the Hochma in the left cannot shine without clothing in light of Hassadim on the right. Hence, as the rose is red and white, the smell of the offering and the offering itself is from red and white. In the scent of the incense, the oils are red and white. The frankincense is white; the flowing myrrh is red, and the scent rises from red and white. Hence He leads His world with roses, which are red and white, and it is written, “To offer unto Me the fat and the blood,” where the fat is white and the blood is red.

367) Correspondingly, a man sacrifices his fat and his blood is atoned for him, for this is red and that is white. As the rose is red and white, it is not melted to be made all white again, but in fire. Likewise, the sacrifice is not melted to be made all white again, but in fire. Now, one who sits in his fast and sacrifices his fat and his blood is not melted into being all white again, but in fire. Out of one’s fasting, his organs weaken and the fire overcomes him. At that time, he should sacrifice his fat and his blood in that fire, and this is called “the atonement altar.”

368) When Rabbi Elazar was sitting in fasting, he was praying and said, “It is revealed and known to You, the Lord my God and the God of my fathers, that I have sacrificed my fat and my blood to You, and I boiled them with the warmth of the weakness of my body. May it please You that this scent that comes out of my mouth at this time is like the scent of the offering from the sacrifice in the fire of the altar and You will grant me.”

369) It turns out that with his fasting, a man sacrifices the fat and the blood, and the smell that comes up from his mouth is the altar of repentance. This is why they established the prayer at the place of the offering, as long as he intends to what we were saying. “Everything that can stand the fire, you shall pass through the fire, and it shall be clean.” Through the fire, it is returned to being all white.

Rabbi Yosi said that while the Temple stood, a person would offer his sacrifice on that matter of the red and white and the smell that rises from them, and its complete return into whiteness through the fire, and he would be forgiven. Now, a man’s prayer atones for him in the place of the sacrifice in the same way as the intention of the sacrifice.

370) “My Beloved is mine and I am His, He pastures among the lilies.” As the lilies have thorns in them, the Creator leads His world with righteous and wicked. As the lilies would not persist without the wicked, the righteous would not be distinguishable without the wicked. By what are the righteous recognized? Because there are wicked. Had there been no wicked, the righteous would be undetected. “He pastures among the Shoshanim [lilies]” means that He leads His world in Shesh Shanim [six years], since “lilies” have the letters of “six years” [see brackets]. And the seventh is a Sabbath for the Creator. Another thing, “In lilies” means in those lilies in the Torah, since Shoshanim [lilies] come from the word Shoneh [delving].

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