Blessed is the
Work in progress
Elijah's Lesson - from Tikunei
Zohar, Introduction II
Elijah - the prophet, although some say that this is a Rabbi Elijah from the era of the Mishnah.
cause of all causes - the First Cause, the Prime Mover, but not just the Prime Mover. There is no secondary mover, so all other causes are from You.
the activator of all activators - who continues to animate His creation. As Prime Mover, He does not leave the world to run on its own. Activation now is from His ongoing activation. This is Divine Providence.
Who waters the Tree - the Tree of Life
Who waters the Tree with irrigation from
Your full name - the spiritual flow from being the
Mover. This ongoing animation is likened to water.
Although a tree also needs light and air besides water to
grow, light and air seem to be ubiquitous. Rainfall for
a tree, on the other hand, is intermittent. In a similar
way, the Divine flow of causing and activating is only because
from Your full name - The Hebrew
These same letters are a source for the three Hebrew words of being – 'was', 'is', and 'will be'.
as the soul is to the body - Here, this
spiritual flow is likened to the animating soul. And,
just as the soul enlivens the body, the Divine creative flow
enlivens the Tree. The Tree of Life is a description of
the human soul. The human body is precisely shaped to
By derivation, the Tree represents the entire universe since everything was created for humanity's sake.
no similarity - You animate souls but there is nothing that animates You. Neither is there something that animates something else that animates You, like the soul animates the body.
Also, the gulf between You and the spiritual dimension is no less than the gulf between You and the material world. Unlike Creation which has inwardness and outside containment, You Yourself are not contained. And the fact that You contain – delimit – the Universe does not mean that You are shaped as a container in any way. There is no similarity whatsoever between You and anything that you cause and activate.
A phrase in Part 1 of this lesson is, "You
have no specific place." Creation has "place," but You
do not. Hasidism uses the analogy of the sun's relation
to its light to describe Creation.
This analogy only works to describe the gulf
between the sun itself and what it produces. However,
You created the heaven and the Earth - 'Heaven' and 'Earth' and are ways of speaking about 'light elements' and 'heavy elements'. The heavenly part of Creation is 'weightless', energy following the laws of energy but not mass. 'Earthly' refers to mass and the natural laws of its behavior.
And You brought out from them - From both the 'light elements' and the 'heavenly elements' together.
The Sun - Which is a mass releasing an
immense amount of energy – both electromagnetic and
gravitational. The primary energy of the Moon's
mass (relative to us on the Earth) is its gravity – a
force of energy. Light from the moon is energy reflected from the Sun, though. The planets consist of material
elements which are the same as on Earth except in different
proportions and states. Their
energy – inertia – is a coordination and
interaction that forms the solar system. (Distant
gravitational energy fields affect us in subtle ways.)
Note how we call the arrangement of the planets a
"system." If one of the planets were to disappear, the
entire arrangement would
The relationship between the Sun and its system is like the relationship between a juggler and what he or she is juggling. The entertainment by the juggler has a history. The juggler carefully and skillfully manipulates several elements into what seems to be a stable system. Then the juggler, finishing the act, dismantles this environment into a configuration that may or may not be ready for his or her next act.
The history of our solar system stems from unknowable conditions during the first several days of creation as recorded in the Biblical Book of Genesis. The situation of whether or how an end to Creation could come about is also unknowable and unthinkable. "If I were to know Him and what He wants, I would have to be Him."
Blessed is the
Compare with Rabbi Nissen Mangel's English translation of Elijah's
(Brooklyn, New York: Merkos L'Inyonei Chinuch, Inc., 1978) pp. 125-6.
Copyright © 1978 Merkos L'Inyonei Chinuch, Inc., All rights reserved.
Library of Congress Catalog Card Number: 82-81508
296.4 -- dc20