We’d also need to explain the great difference between the lights of BaN and the higher ones.
It’s essential to realize that the whole idea of personal service is only relevant to the realm of BaN (and MaH which works in tandem with it) which has to do with the world of Atzilut. And we’d need to realize that the higher realms have no need for any “holding back” of the bestowal of God’s “flow”, since that only factors in when rah exists, which only occurs in the lower realms. Indeed, everything happens instantaneously in those higher realms. The idea of holding anything back also only exists when there’s an element of time (i.e., when things work on a linear level and one thing can only occur after another) which also doesn’t exist in the upper realms.
Thus, when things play out on the lower level of BaN where rah exists and things haven’t yet been rectified, they take time to work, given that they require humankind’s input. This goes to explain the need for and existence of the 6,000 years of human service. The point is that this realm will be rectified in the end, though. And once that happens, all of the realms will be elevated. For even though the lower realms are rooted in the lowest one of BaN, they nonetheless will ascend since they’re interconnected, and as such the higher realms will affect the lower ones beneficially.
Everything will thus be rectified in the tenth millennium (and onward) — in the eternal realm which we cannot fathom — thanks to the work that humankind engaged in, in the lower realms. And the higher realms will thus contribute to that, too.
Let’s see that all now in the words of the Petach itself.
Until MaH and BaN came about, that is, in the upper realms that came about before them, everything advance toward a state of Tikkun and nothing needed to be held back since there was neither linear time nor rah to contend with. But a form of damage occurred in BaN which is rooted in the existence of rah, whose Tikkun lay in MaH. They had to be given a place to do what they had to do to be rectified and so they could return to the state that’s beyond that of the worlds where the lower beings, i.e., humankind, could ascend higher and higher in keeping with the mystical notion of the offshoots of Adam Kadmon, that is, in keeping with the idea that all of the realms are related, like roots and offshoots, until the ultimate ascent of everything comes about.
So the Partzuf Attik — which is the mystical notion of the conjunction of MaH and Ban — alone is ready and constructed so as to transfer things from the current order of governance to that of eternity. So that every deed performed by those of us below has an effect on the conjunction of MaH and BaN and goes on to be fixed in eternity. Then when all the work of the lower beings, i.e., the lower realms and humankind, will have been completed, everything needed for the conjunction of MaH and BaN will be complete, and what has to be will be fixed for all eternity in accordance with humankind’s deeds. That way everything will be in the merit of humankind and in accordance with its deeds and all will be rectified.
(c) 2016 Rabbi Yaakov Feldman
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Rabbi Yaakov Feldman has also translated and commented upon “The Path of the Just” and “The Duties of the Heart” (Jason Aronson Publishers).