Fundamental Hierarchy

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Hebrew Text


English Translation


Short Summary

The vertical structure of the spheres - with one being higher than the other - is due to the unique personality of each level and its inherent and essential qualities.

Long Summary

[In the previous chapters we discussed the hierarchy of the spheres and worlds based on their relationship with each other -- how they evolve from one another -- that their status (higher or lower) is defined by the measure of energy flowing from one level to the next, with the lower levels receiving a diminished degree of energy. Now, in this chapter, we discover that the quality of each level, whether it is higher or lower, is defined by its essential personality (not by the measure of energy). On the contrary: the measure of energy results from the essential quality of each respective level. in other words: the distinction between sphere and world and the next is not relative but absolute].
The "vertical" hierarchy of the sefirot -- with one being higher than the other -- is not due merely to the relative flow of energy from one level to the next (with the lower levels being defined by their diminished energy, including the concealment that takes place in each level even before it transmits to the next level), but to the unique personality of each level and its inherent and essential qualities. Indeed, this fundamental state of each level is the cause for its degree of energy.
The upper spiritual worlds above Atzilus are fundamentally higher than Atzilus: They manifest and relate to the essence (atzmus u'mhus) of the kav, while Atzilus only manifests and relates to its reflection, its existence, but not its inner personality. Beyond that, Adam Kadmon is inherently superior to the worlds beneath it, since it manifests the primordial desire for existence.
So too in the sefirot, Chochma is fundamentally higher than Binah, because though it is in the cognitive realm (unlike Keter, desire), it is higher than comprehension and expresses a dimension that is beyond reason.

Glossary

  • kav
  • energy
  • structure
  • sefirot
  • hierarchy
  • vertical
  • chochma
  • binah
  • emotions
  • malchut
  • keter
  • desire
  • adam kadmon

Concepts

Higher and Lower.

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Analysis/Compendium


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Points to Consider