I don't see any good Zohar threads so I wanted to make one about 2 of the most important themes in the mysterious Sepher Ha-Zohar. It is truly
unknown who wrote it but the stories told are about Simeon ben Yochai and friends, second century Rabbis, Simeon went on the run and lived in a cave
for years before the Roman who wanted him dead died, and while he was in the cave he may have written the Zohar, but the likelihood of him writing
that immense body of literature in the second century and hiding it until some Arabs found it and it got into the hands of Moses de Leon (one story I
read about) are slim to none.
Regardless it gained fame and has been passed down, probably people added to it and then a running commentary was added and today the English volumes
run from 3 to 5 to 15 volumes and another less trustworthy 22 from the not Rabbinical Kabbalah Centre that made it into a business empire and I would
not buy a pack of gum from them with their Kabbalah Water. I recommend the 15 or 16 volume versions because they are the whole Zohar including the
Greater Assembly and Book of Concealment starting from Genesis/Bere#h.
En Soph is the hidden source of the ten Sefirot. A good way to describe En Soph is as the hidden God, who seeks to reveal Himself and unloose His
hidden powers. (selected quotes from Isaiah Tishby vol 1)
The Sefirot are emanations of rays if light from Him. I would connect that with the creation of the light on day one before the celestial orbs, stars
or planets or moons, light still existed as did time, before the orbs. I would call the light the Sephirot. There are ten with one hidden called
Da'ath or Gnosis. It is too intricate to cover here so I will get back to En Soph.
Removed personally from the acts of creation which occur from His will alone, emanations, like the Christian Logos and Holy Spirit, they are God and
do the creating. The Holy Spirit is the Shekhina though and no regular emanation or Sephira but I will get into that in a few.
Nothing in the Tanakh can be compared to En Soph, it doesn't mention Him because He is impossible to describe though the Zohar tries, lets get to some
Zohar 1, 22b,Tikkunei ha Zohar
That which is called "cause of causes" is the cause of [known] causes, for not one of these causes performs any act without obtaining permission from
the cause that is above it, as I have explained on "Let us make man" indicates two, for one said to that which was above it, "Let us make," and it
could do nothing without the express permission of the one above it,and the one above it could do nothing without first obtaining advice from its
There is even a "cause above causes" that
"has no companion from which to take advice, for it is single, preceding all, with no partner, and it is for this reason that it says," See now that
I, even I, am He, and there is no God with Me," from whom it should take advice, it has no companion, partner or number. There does exist a shared
unity, as with male and female, of whom it is said, "for one I called him" (Isaiah 51:2 referring to Abraham and Sarah). But this is one without
number, and without companion, and it says therefore, "there is no god with Me."
"Happy is the man who is united with his master in the revelation of mysteries which are not revealed even to the angels. "
Zohar III, 225a, Raya Mehemna
He understands all, but none understands Him. He is not called by the name YHWH, nor any other name, except when His light extends himself upon
them (Yod, He, Vav, He, each corresponding to a Sefirot). And when He removes himself from them, He has no name of His own at all.
"That which is exceedingly deep, who can find it? "(Ecclesiasties 7:24). No one can look upon him without becoming dark. Even the supernal Keter
(Crown Sefirot), whose light is the strongest of all the levels, and of all the hosts of Heaven, both the upper and lower realms, is alluded to in" He
made darkness His hiding place " (Psalm 18:12);
He encompasses all worlds, and none but He surrounds them on every side, above and below and in the four courners of the globe, and none may go beyond
His domain. He fills all worlds, and none fill Him. He gives life to them, and there is no other god above Him.
If this is from the time of Moses de Leon and called the earth a globe, that is impressive.
In aggadic literature the Shekhina is the divine presence. The Tree of Knowledge (the 10/11 Sefirot) is the Shekhina, and Adams sin was separating the
Tree of Knowledge from the Tree of Life (Tiferet). You could say Jesus came to reunite the world with the Shekhina or Holy Spirit because it is
believed at times She is exiled through the sin of "cutting", which unleashes the power of the "other side " (Lilith, Samael,)
In other words, based on the state of the world whether it is good vs when it is evil, the Shekhina loses power during times of great sin and the
other side gains power. Cutting is akin to idolatry.
The Shekhina reveals the power of three judgements, the Judgement of justice, which promotes righteousness and virtue to sustain the world, using the
"other side" as a henchmen.
Judgement of vengeance, to protect the Shekhina and rescue her from her tormenters (reminds me of Pistis-Sophia).
Judgement of fury, aroused by sin and is a reaction to the harm done to the Shekhina. This is a destructive force when the "other side" is in the
world and defeats holiness.
(All quotes or paraphrased from Tishby)
Zohar 1, 221a A Rose and a Lily
Come and see. At first she is green like a rose, whose leaves are green ; afterward "a lily" (shoshanah), she is read with white colors.
, with six leaves; shoshanah, because she changes (ishtaniat) from color to color, and varies her colors. "A lily"----first a rose;
when she wishes to unite with the king, she is called" rose" and after she has become united with him, with the king, with those kisses she is called
"lily" since it is written "His lips are as lilies" (Song of Songs 5:13) "A lily of the valleys," for she changes color, sometimes for good,
sometimes for evil, sometimes for Mercy [Elohim], sometimes for judgment [Yahweh].
Zohar III, 97a, Raya Mehemna
A Woman of Worth
The woman who plays the harlot moves away from them, because she cannot exist by their side [loving wife and husband]. The woman of worth comes near,
and approaches the High Priest, and she certainly is pure: "Then she will be cleared and shall conceive" (Numbers 5:28), and she gives additional
strength to her husband. The woman who plays the harlot flees from the sanctuary, so as not to come near it, for if she came during the examining of
the woman of worth, she would perish from the world. She has no desire for the sanctuary, and flees from it, leaving Israel in purity, with no foreign
admixture, in respect to the mystery of faith. This recondite mystery is that of two sisters, and when one caught the examination of the other "her
belly became swollen, and her thigh fell away" (Numbers 5:27), for the examination of the woman of worth is a fatal poison to the woman who plays the
harlot. This, therefore, is the council of the Holy One, blessed be He, gave to His children ; that they should bring this offering for the sake of
the woman of worth, so the harlot flees, and leaves the people of Israel free of foreign admixture.
Happy are they in this world, and the world to come!
edit on 21-1-2017 by Joshuabennone because: (no reason given)