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Yesod of the World of Chaos

According to this explanation, the twenty-third of Elul is the sixth day of the week of chaos that preceded the creation of the world, and therefore corresponds to yesod of the World of Chaos. (The seven days of the World of Chaos correspond to the sefirot as follws: da’at, chesed, gevurah, tiferet, netzach-hod [in the primordial world these two sefirot appear as one], yesod, malchut.) It is the same day that one week later will be Rosh Hashanah, the day that man, with his power to rectify, will eventually be created.


The name of the king relating to the sefirah of yesod is “Shaul from Rechovot Hanahar.” The first king of Israel, King Saul who reigned before King David, also had that name, however the original King Saul was not a Jewish king at all. He was an Edomite king and he came from a very mystical place called Rechovot Hanahar, “the Wide River.” In Kabbalah and Hassidism, this idiom symbolizes paradise. Saul is the king who reigned on the twenty-third of Elul and died on that very same day because he and his philosophy collapsed. His kingdom, like the other kingdoms of chaos, cannot last.


Shaul comes from the root “sha’al,” which means to ask, or request.  But the very same root in Hebrew also means the abyss, the grave or the pit as in the expressions “sheol,” “sheol tachtit.” The word to ask in Hebrew, “sha’al,” however, is often used to refer to desire or passion, as in the verse in Ecclesiastes “col asher sha’alu einai,” which means “all that my eyes desired.” Thus, the root “sha’al,” does not only mean to ask a philosophical or intellectual question, rather it is often used to refer to a very base drive, or desire, of the soul. That passion itself is “shaul” or “sheol.” In particular, this term relates to sexual desire, the basis of all passions and drives which the soul desires. Following this base drive, whether consciously or unconsciously, eventually leads a person into a deep abyss.

The abyss, or the grave, is also sometimes an idiom used by our sages for the impure womb. There are psychological theories today that believe that sexual desire originates in the womb. There is a longing to return to the prenatal state, a passion for that grave, for that womb. Our sages similarly express this by the fact that another synonym for the grave, “kever,” is also used to depict the womb.


This is the motivation of the Jihad suicide bombers. Their religion promises them the ultimate fulfillment of all their physical desires. They desire to return to the grave, believing it to be the ultimate paradise, where the fulfillment of all of their desires will be as readily available as they were in the womb.


According to Kabbalah, therefore, this day represents the ultimate energy and the ultimate subconscious desire of pegam ha’brit, the day that corresponds to the sefirah of the unrectified yesod of the primordial World of Chaos. [However, it is not only the motivation behind the radical Islamic terror onslaught, but the objects at which they strike that are related to the character of this day.]

To summarize: the Rashash writes that each of the seven days from the eighteenth of Elul until the twenty-fourth of Elul, have an important intention, relating to the rectification of each one of the seven primordial kings of the World of Chaos. The sixth king, Shaul, alludes to descending into the grave, with his belief that the “wide river” of the womb is the ultimate paradise. This however, is a perverted image of paradise and the rectification of this day must include the correction of this perversion.


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