The Book of Zohar. Chapter “Heaven and Earth”

The Book of Zohar

The Book of Zohar. Chapter “Heaven and Earth” (abridged)

151. Rabbi Shimon opened (the way for the Light) and said (revealed it to his disciples), “In the beginning the Creator created the Heavens and the earth.” This verse should be looked at (revealed in the Light of Hochma), for whoever (he who attains) claims that there is another Creator (when he attains a property other than bestowal), (in this state) he disappears from the world (loses this degree), as it is written, “He who claims that there is another Creator perishes from both the earth (Malchut of that degree) and from the Heavens (Bina of that degree), for there is no other Creator (the Upper degree with regard to him), but the Almighty (a higher degree of bestowal than him).”

152.With the exception of the word ELEH, everything is written in Aramaic, which is called “translation.” He asks: However, should you suggest that it is because the holy angels (the forces of bestowal below the level of man) do not understand the translation (cannot participate in this action), i.e., the Aramaic language, then everything should have been said in Hebrew, so the holy angels would hear and be grateful for it (all the forces would participate in the action)

153. He asks: earth is called Arka, when it should read, Ar’a. He answers: because Arka is one of the seven lands below, where the sons of Cain’s sons reside. Indeed, after being banished from the face of the earth, they descended there and fathered generations; wisdom became so lost that all understanding was lost, and this is a double land, consisting of darkness and Light.

154. And there are two rulers there – one rules over darkness and one over Light, and they become hostile to each other. When Cain descended there, they joined together and became complete. And they all saw that they were Cain’s descendants. Therefore, their two heads are like two serpents, except for when the ruler of Light defeats the other, the ruler of darkness. Hence, they enter Light and darkness, and become as one.

155.For these are the two rulers, called Afrira and Kastimon, who resemble holy angels with six wings. One has the image of a bull, and the other of an eagle. And when they unite, they create an image of man.

156. When they are covered with darkness, they turn into a serpent with two heads, and move like a serpent. They soar in the void and bathe in the Great Sea, and when they approach the chains of Aza and Azael, they rile and rouse them and leap into the mountains of darkness, thinking that the Creator wishes to bring justice upon them.

157. And these two Creator-appointed rulers swim in the Great Sea, fly up from there, and at night go to Naamah, the mother of witches, for whom the first people fell. And they wish to approach her, but she leaps 60,000 Parsa’ot and assumes several different forms, so that people may be deceived and enticed by her.

158. These two rulers soar in the entire world and then return to their places. And they rouse the sons of Cain’s sons with a spirit of evil desires to beget children.

“Soar in the entire world” means that they bring harm to man in all of their thoughts, wherever they can, and lure him into the darkness of night.

159. The Heavens that rule there are not like ours, and the land bears neither seed nor fruit by the power of Heaven, as ours does, and the grains grow again only once in several years. Hence, it is written of them that they could not correct Shemaya and Arka, and perished from the Supernal land, called Tevel, where they will not be able to exist, nor rule over it, nor cause human beings to sin because of the night. Hence, they disappeared from Arka and from the place of Shemaya that were created by the name ELEH.

160. Hence, there exists a Targum, a translation (from Hebrew to Aramaic; the Zohar calls Aramaic – Targum), so the holy angels will not think that it is said about them, so they will not harm us. This is the secret of the word ELEH – as we have already stated, it is a holy word that cannot be translated into a Targum.

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