SEVENTH EXPLANATION



Rabbi Azriel of Gerona's Text

QUESTION: If the inquirer persists after you have established that there are sefirot and that they are ten and they are emanated and not created and their multiplicity is derived from unity and asks: Now answer me, why should I not ascribe to them measure, limit, and corporeality?

ANSWER: I have already informed you that Eyn-Sof is perfection without imperfection, and that He has a finite power which is unlimited and that the limitation emanating from Him which delimits all existent beings is the sefirot, having the power to act in perfection and imperfection. Had he not existentiated for them limits, we would be unable to recognize that He has the power to existentiate limitation. As a testimony to the fact that nothing exists outside of Him, He brought into existence limitation, so that the confined beings could recognize their own boundaries. And though there are no limits above, the musings stemming from Eyn-Sof suggest that He is above and beyond extension in boundaries.

All that is limited, whether apprehended by the pondering of the heart or hinted at in thought extending below, can be found in speech and vision. Further, anything subject to limitation has magnitude and corporeality, because anything existent that is grasped by contemplation of the heart is called "body," not only spiritual things but even the sefirot. They are the root of limitation. This limitation which is unlimited is emanated, and thus it states: "Their measure is ten without end." (Sepher Yetzirah 1:5) Finally, the philosophers stated that man's intellect is finite, and that from the way of the Ruler we see that everything has limitation, magnitude, and measure.


Reb Yakov Leib's Commentary

Here R. Azriel returns to the exquisite logic that the "perfection" of God (by which is meant His all-inclusiveness) must, by virtue of being "perfect" include the potential (at least) for "imperfection." Based on such reasoning he can state, "This limitation which is unlimited, etc." which can be read to mean that unlike the "limitation" of man (who is finite), the "Limitation" of God (who is infinite) is "unlimited" or, like Himself, infinite.

Furthermore, according to R. Azriel, this potential for imperfection in Eyn-Sof becomes realized by its act of creation. Several centuries later R. Isaac Luria would incorporate this thought in his own cosmology of Tzimtzum and the "Shattering of the Vessels" attendant on God's first attempt at creating the Ten Sefirot. In that process, Luria proposes what he calls the Reshimu -- or a "lingering doubt" in the mind of God about mankind -- that "holds back" from the act of creation, contaminating the primordial space of Tzimtzum with a kind of "negative" Force, which can be likened to "evil" or "imperfection."

Finally, R. Azriel makes the point that Eyn-Sof makes man finite in order that he may have a base of comparison by which to comprehend the infinite nature of his Creator. In other words, just as one cannot "know" heat without cold, pleasure without pain, etc., one cannot know the "infinite" without the "finite."



EXPLANATION: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11




BIOGRAPHICAL NOTES:
| Sabbatai Zevi | Jacob Frank | Reb Yakov Leib HaKohain |
| A Critical Re-Assessment of Sabbatai Zevi |
| Reb Yakov Leib HaKohain's Professions of a Holy Sinner |
AUDIO LECTURES ON NEO-SABBATIAN KABBALAH BY REB YAKOV LEIB HAKOHAIN:
| The Zohar | Vedanta & Kabbalah | The Gnostic Gospel of Thomas |
| The Sponataneous Jesus Lectures | The Holy Qur'an |
| Special Topics |
ESSENTIAL PRINCIPLES OF "YALHAKIAN" NEO-SABBATIAN KABBALAH:
| Knowing the Unknowable |
| A Brief Note on Enlightenment |
| A Neo-Sabbatian Discourse on the Son of God |
| A Primer of "Yalhakian" Neo-Sabbatian Kabbalah |
| Participating in the Continuing Incarnation of God |
| Sabbatai Zevi's 'God of the Faith' | Evolution of the Ego |
| Two Torahs of Kabbalah: Torah D'Atziluth & Torah D'Beriah |
| On the Limits of Antinomianism | The Transformation of God |
| Commentary on the 13th Century "Treatise on the Left Emanation" |
| A Selection of Neo-Sabbatian Quotations Culled from Various Sources |
KABBALISTIC WRITINGS OF REB YAKOV LEIB HAKOHAIN:
| Commentaries on Rabbi Azriel of Gerona's 12th Century Text, "Explanation of the Ten Sefirot" |
| Kabbalistic Genetics of the Holy Seed & Reclaiming the Lost Sheep of the House of Israel |
| A Commentary on the Book of Job | Kabbalah and the Interpretation of Dreams |
| To Die for the People: A Kabbalistic Reinterpretation of the Crucifixion of Jesus |
| The Shemot Shel Katzar Tikkunim: Revealing the Concealed Names of God |
| The Christian Myth of Melchizedek vs. Hereditary Jewish Priesthood |
| The Apocrypha of Jacob Frank | The Tikkun of Raising Animals |
| Appointment in Smyrna: A Neo-Sabbatian Odyssey |
| Sabbatai Zevi and the Mystery of the Red Heifer |
| The Kabbalah of the Hindu Mantra "OM" |
| The Mystery of the Middle Column |
| The Hidden Structures of Water |
| Exegesis on the Rod of Aaron |
| Book of Silence |
POETRY OF REB YAKOV LEIB HAKOHAIN:
|YaLHaK's Garden of Neo-Sabbatian Verses|
ROADMAPS TO GOD:
| Ten Sefirot of Jewish Kabbalah | Sufi Lion of Bektashi Islam |
| Mandala of Tibetian Buddhism | Seven Chakras of Tantric Hinduism |
| Ox-Herding Pictures of Zen Buddhism | Rosarium Pictures of Christian Alchemy |
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