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Yehuda Leib HaLevi Ashlag (Baal HaSulam)

The Meaning of the Chaf in Anochi

Malchut that is clothed in the worlds is called Ani (me/I). It hangs down to Assiya, which is the separation, where each person feels as a separate entity, sensing the “self,” and by its expansion wishes to conquer the entire world for one’s own will and pleasure. This is the power of the shattering in Assiya, “I will rule,” meaning from holy sparks that were not yet sorted. It is called “the serpent’s skin,” which is the good and bad in the Noga shell.

There are two souls in the creature, in which one acquires. They clothe in two spirits: the “vital soul” and the “intellectual soul.” One is from the Noga shell, and one is a part of God above. It is also called “The soul of every flesh is its blood,” and this is the vital soul. The intellectual soul is the point in the heart (prior its completion, as in, “And my heart is awake”). And because the vital soul extends from the Noga shell, it is called “coincidental,” the opposite of eternal. The holy soul is called “eternal,” which is a part of God above.

The Difference between the Bodies of Idol Worshippers and the Bodies of Israel

Now we should scrutinize according to what is written, “One does not lift a finger below unless one is mentioned above.” It is also written that “the nations are as a drop of a bucket, and are counted as the small dust of the balance.” How can both be observed, for it is obvious that Providence and the dust of the balance or the drop of a bucket do not go together, as there is no thought without an action in the Creator, or an action without a purpose even in people?

Indeed, this is why there is a difference between the bodies of idol worshippers and the bodies of Israel. The body of a servant of the Creator is judged by Him in private Providence, to the Creator’s will, the desired purpose. For this reason, although the body is an inconsequential hell from its onset, it still appeared in the Creator’s thought as a tool for work. But the bodies of idol worshippers, which are unfit for serving the Creator, and which are not eternal, private Providence is unified in them only in general, and not in particular. It is as one who weighs meat on scales: he knows in his mind that over time some dust will be left on the balance, but that thought is not regarded as such because it is without an intention, for why would he need the dust, and he does not need the body at all!

Let me offer an example: A person buys a box with letters for printing, and gives them to the worker to print books with them. It follows that all the printing is done by the landlord’s supervision, although he is not the operator.

But it is one thing with motionless letters, for which they are not under the landlord’s monitoring, as they are never his intention, and all the thoughts regarding the above kind were only on actions, but not on emptiness and nothingness. And also, the merit of the landlord is not diminished by inactive letters, since he is not the operator, naturally. However, the merit of the operator does indeed diminish because he is idle and makes little use of the blessing that extends from the direct preparation that he gives to him.

The lesson is that the printing operator is the vital soul, which extends from the Noga shell with two forms—good or bad—and the points are taken from the point in the heart, while the body of the letters are from the spaces of the whole world.

Ani (me/I)—Anochi (also me/I)

If the printer draws near to good neighbors, who give him ways and hints of good combinations, that printer acquires a new form, called “one golden pan of ten shekels, full of incense.” The form of the initial feeling of the Ani is swallowed in a new form of Anochi [1], and this is the reward for his good act. At that time his merit reaches the merit of the author, like an uneducated printer who prints books. Over time, by looking in the books for his own needs, becomes educated and writes books like his prior landlords, as well as gives his books to other printers, and raises their pay.

But if the printer is in a bad environment, and he is made to print bad combinations, punctuated from the shell of the point in their hearts, the left hollow, he becomes as lost and forsaken as they are, like the dust of a bucket.

A Coincidental Form and an Eternal Form

By that you can understand that the printer and the box of letters are all coincidental and not eternal, and the author does not take them into consideration in and of themselves at all. It is just as one who hires an employee to do some work does not regard the beauty of his face or his appearance, for they are not the issue. What is important is his strength and loyalty, and on that the landlord’s guidance focuses, and not on the rest of his qualities, which are merely coincidental in regard to him (although they are to be noticed for other discernments: for mating, and for being liked by friends, and this is regarded as the general). The focus of his author’s thought is in direct, undistorted combinations due to work, so they are fit to disclose the wisdom concealed in those combinations, so all who sees them will acquire his form by himself and will become as wise as he. His intention to create a new creation, as spiritual as Himself, is similar to the desire of corporeal beings—man, fowl, and beast—to preserve the species.

This is the meaning of the keeping of the soul for eternity, regarded as the one Chaf (one of the Hebrew letters) that the printer purchased. It is the “new Anochi,” for then it acquires a new form, as the author himself, and makes by himself good and steadfast combinations, full of blessing and light. The combinations remain for eternity as vessels of Hochma, and his one Chaf, which is his Anochi, is filled abundantly with pleasures of joy, gladness, and preciousness, which are his lot eternity.

It follows that knowing and choosing come as one, since the printer has no freedom of choice, for he is printing other people’s books and not his own. However, when he is rewarded with taking off that form and putting on the form of Anochi, he becomes one of the chosen among the nation, chosen by the God above, as it is written in the Midrash, “‘And therefore choose life,’ as one who takes his son’s hands, places them on a good portion, and tells him, ‘Choose this for yourself,’ as it is written, ‘And therefore choose life.’”

We might say that his knowledge necessitates the act, and if he knew that the Ani would acquire the Anochi, then he would be compelled to acquire it. If so, what is the reward for his actions? This is the meaning of “If you walk contrary to Me, I will walk with rage against you,” to teach you that the acquired form is a new spiritual being that is made by taking off the corporeal form. Any printer who gives his coincidental form and is ready for the Creator, the Creator is ready to take off his coincidental form and replace it with a new, spiritual one, creating in him a new heart and a new spirit.

This is so with one who prints good books, and focuses on benefiting from them in eternity. But with one who prints bad combinations, who focuses on enjoying them and what has already been imprinted in him at birth, he clings to the pollution (lit. nocturnal ejaculation) in an inconsequential, passing world. And therefore, “I, too, will walk against you with rage.”

Thus, it is clear to you that this question has nothing to do with spirituality, for it is impossible to derive from corporeality. For example, if the Creator knows that Reuben will have a son, then Reuben must have a son even without the coupling of male and female. Such a thing is unthinkable, since we should say according to the nonsense of this question that He knew everything you’d do after all the scrutinies, and that you are compelled.

And the printer who clings to the pollution necessarily falls under the rage, as well, and we should not say that he does not deserve to be punished, since he has no choice or free will, for the punishment is the form he is in, as in prior to creation and absence. It is not a punishment from the Creator, but that He did not create one who does not want to be created and take off his coincidental form and adopt a new, spiritual, eternal form.

In that regard, we could ask about the affliction of the souls in Hell. This relates to the point in the heart before it is included in its root. It must emit its pollution from the material world, which is a bitter punishment for it, and not revenge. On the contrary, it is a great salvation. This is very deep and understand it as Arvut [(mutual guarantee) could also mean “pleasantness”], as general.

No Plurality in the Essence of Eternity

...Indeed, one who sows for bread is not meticulous in choosing the place, the particular place, but in the positive relation between the place and his seed, and any place where he sows and finds sufficient bread, and he is content without profit and without even a little of the value of the place itself, for it is the same everywhere. This is the meaning of what one must say, “The world was created for me,” since the whole world is rewarding for him. The whole world was created only to command this, since there is no plurality in the essence of eternity, and all the forms of the souls are one and unique essence. It is so because there is no “part” in spirituality, and the whole issue of deficiency and correction is a new creation made by taking off the old form. These are the entertainments of the Creator, as in “The king is glorified in the multitude of the people.”

Understand that there is no plurality of entertainment in the Creator in the general redemption of the entire world at once, more than the redemption of one soul at one time. It is so because remote people and bodies were not added without time, for one at a time is called “two couplings,” of heaven and of earth. Two people at one time are called “one coupling,” and the soul is jointly theirs, completely equally, without subtraction or addition, as in luck, time, cause, or age, for all who are born at the same time share the same sign (fortune).

Thus, it is clear that the main purpose of the creation of the 6,000 years is to multiply generations and times in which the couplings will change and multiply, but not to multiply bodies. Otherwise, it will be difficult, for He could have created all the bodies of the 6,000 years in one year. Moreover, it is known ... so the bodies are renewed, and the first ones themselves incarnate and come in time and in generations, meaning their “vital soul,” which is the root of the speaking.

Therefore, he does not care at all which body will disclose the desire as long as the desire is disclosed, by whomever it is disclosed. It is just as it does not matter what the face of the printer looks like, as long as the book is printed. But the printers themselves, who are numerous in the world, are as the drop of a bucket and the dust of the scales, consumed and lost by their own rage. However, we do need a printer who is capable in his work, and anyone who takes on the work takes his reward from the complete one, and knowing does not necessitate his face in particular, but rather everyone whose heart is kind will raise a donation to the Lord, and the more one hurries, the better it is, in and of itself.

Creation Is Primarily the Eternity in Creation

Explanation: The Creator is omnipotent, and therefore although the creatures are as beasts, still, one who is rewarded with annulling one’s will before the Creator’s will, He gives him and creates within him a new spirit and a new heart, and enthrones him over all His works, as in “By Me kings reign.” It is similar to a viceroy, to whom all the governance of the state is given, and one who is favored by that rewarded one, He takes him from the providence attributed to the shells, and places him under the Providence that is established for eternity, and He will do the will of those who fear Him. This is the meaning of “As I create worlds, so the righteous create worlds.”

It is so because creation is primarily about the eternity in creation, where the eternal in the first creation of this world, meaning Adam HaRishon, the Creator’s creation, is attributed to the Creator. But from Adam onward that creation is given to the righteous in each generation. They are the ones leading the worlds as they wish and desire, and “a righteous sentences and the Creator executes.”

Know that for this reason, the providence of corporeality need not change at all, since spirituality is not bounded by the corporeal boundary, and it is fitting for completion over all the boundaries in the corporeal reality.

This is why the world is filled with immeasurable corpses, to such an extent that even if 600,000 righteous are established, they will still be able to engage in creating new worlds. However, everything follows the internality, which is Providence, where the righteous establishes and the Creator executes. And the sense of surplus on that will be as the drop of a bucket or as the dust of the scales, and Nature cannot regard what is worthless.

The vital soul is regarded as corrupted and about to be burned, without the value of being. It is called “pollution” (lit. nocturnal ejaculation) to imply that the sensation of being of his own self is under rage of pollution, and incidental. However, a soul that acquires a part of God above is called “being,” and this is the meaning of “to give to those who love Me being (substance), and to fill their treasuries.” Only of this being can we speak, and not of all the shells that preceded its making, whose being is merely coincidental, present during the work, and finally destroyed. The heaven and earth will wear out like a garment, and only the acquired desire will remain for all eternity.

By that “being” is the plurality according to the generations and times, as incarnations. For this reason there is no division in the innovation of the “being” between one body and all the bodies in the world, since analysis and plurality are dependent on “times.”

[1] Chaf is a letter in the word Anochi (me).

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