The work of the spiritual teacher is called a “mantle” (robe of the high priest). Baal HaSulam says in letter 26: This is why this work is generally called “a mantle,” as it is an overcoat, “beyond” human conception,” since the teacher dresses his pupil in it. “And in which there is a combination, as in the edges of the Kli, which is the place where the filth is collected. This means the ego.
During the training period, he is in a state of “to and fro,” as are all those who seek the opening. This means the exit to the next level. And in the last moment of the march when he is close to the opening, but he doesn’t know that, since the opening suddenly opens up at the last moment. When a person completes the left and the right lines and the only thing left for him to do is to create the middle line, this opening opens up.
But if he hasn’t done so yet, then when he approaches the opening, then, of all times, he grows weary and turns back. This is called Zahav (the golden), from the words Ze Hav (give me this), which means from the doubts: What for? Why? This vessel of gold is the most precious of all the other vessels, but it’s built out of the disappointments and the disrespect of everything that we go through. For the movement is done through the craving and the longing for Dvekut (adhesion) with Him, which is built gradually by such maneuvers, when a person almost reaches the opening itself, but doesn’t see it. And it is this place that he is repulsed by since there is the greatest filth, and so a person turns back.
He is also called “a bell” (Paamon) because he doesn’t have the strength to open and he turns back, thus spending his time going to and fro (Paama) again, time and time again, looking for the opening.
Also, he is called Rimon (pomegranate) because the Romemut (sublime, exaltedness) of above the intellect surrounds him from all sides. This is the place where the greatest filth has been accumulated and a person cannot overcome it or leap above it if he doesn’t work in exaltedness, above the intellect. Hence, again he is called Rimon for otherwise he would fall entirely. The only way to go through this is with our eyes closed, in exaltedness, above reason, by the power that one receives from the teacher, from the friends, and from the books.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/13/13, Writings of Baal HaSulam