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There is yet another subject the knowledge of which is only imparted to those who are conversant with the teachings and wisdom of the Secret Doctrine. From all others I am prohibited and forbidden to discourse thereon. "What may that be?" asked Rabbi Jose. "I cannot," said the stranger, divulge it unless I am assured of your fitness to receive it." Travelling on together in silence, he turned to them and said: "When the moon approaches the sun, the Holy One by his power revives the North and attracts it to himself to himself in love; whilst the South revives itself. When the influences of these two combine and blend together; then occurs the conjunction of the two luminaries. When the sun rises in the east it attracts the influences of these two cardinal quarters and reflects them upon the moon at full. The approximation and conjunction of the sun and moon are analogous to that of the male and female. The law of attraction prevails throughout the universe, in the world above as in the world below and is expressed in the aphorism--"as above so below." As the right side of the sephirotic tree stands for love, the attractive principle, so does the left stand

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for rigour or the principle of repulsion personified by the serpent from whom emanate all impurity and corruption and death. It draws and attracts all who are receptive of its evil influence.

Now when the North is not revived by the Holy One, the moon becomes drawn to the left side and in order to prevent this, Israel is obliged to sacrifice a goat in which the serpent delighted, lets go his hold of that luminary that then begins to shine and daily increase in light and splendour. Thus on the day of atonement when the serpent or Evil One is engaged with the goat offered unto it, the moon freed from its evil influence undertakes to defend and protect Israel as a mother watches over the safety and welfare of her child. Then it is that the Holy One grants his blessings with remission and pardon of sins. During the Feast of Tabernacles the influence of the right side of the Sephirotic tree so attracts the moon that she attains its fulness and heavenly blessings are showered upon the tutelary guardians of pagan nations on earth in order to preclude them from imagining they have any right to share in those that are reserved and allotted to Israel. During its rise and fall the visible disk of the moon symbolises those blessings that are bestowed upon Israel, but the obscured part, those of idolatrous nations. When the moon however is at the full, Israel receives and profits from the full tide of blessings from heaven and therefore it is written "On the eighth day64a-64b
Num. 29:35
there shall be an "abzereth" amongst you (Num. XXVIII. 15) the word abzereth here meaning as the Targum translates it "a reunion" in order that the divine in all their fulness and extent may descend upon Israel as a whole. On this day, Israel prays to the Holy One for the blessing of rain not only for themselves but also all other nations. This feast peculiar to Israel is referred to in the words of scripture "My beloved is mine and I am his"Cant. 2:16 or its attendant blessings are shared in by no other nation; in the dispensing of which the Holy One is like unto a King who invites his friends to a banquet on a certain day. After reflection, the monarch says to himself, "I wish to enjoy myself with the company of my friends but in sending invitations to my governors, and chiefs and rulers of provinces I am afraid these will be so numerous as to interfere with and lessen my enjoyment." What did the King do? He first regaled his official guests with the usual meats and vegetables, and after their departure well filled and satisfied, he sat down at the table laden with the best and most delicious viands and after his friends had feasted

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thereon, he further added to their pleasure by granting the requests they made unto him and so the banquet passed off pleasantly and without any exhibition of ill-feeling or discontent. In a similar manner the Holy One acts with Israel and therefore scripture saith, "on the eighth day shall be your abzereth (coming together) that is, for the reception of blessings to be participated in only by yourselves." Amongst the requisites used during the Feast of Tabernacles, were the palm and the citron. During every day of the feast, Jews with a citron in their left hand and in their right a bundle of branches viz.: one of the palm tree and two of the willow and myrtle, pass around the altar exclaiming seven times,64b in memory of the conquest of Jericho and hence called the Great Hosanna. In preparing the Loulab, the stem of the branches was covered over with palm leaves. If it was dry or withered, crooked or split in the least, it was considered worthless. It must be fresh and green, smooth and without burr or blemish. It was encircled with sprigs of willow and myrtle each of which must have three leaves otherwise the Loulab was Posoul.

Then said Rabbi Hiya and Rabbi Jose to the stranger, "This; has indeed been a most pleasant and interesting journey; blessed are they who delight to study the Secret Doctrine." Then embracing him, Rabbi Jose exclaimed, "Surely thou art of the number of those referred to in Scripture "And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord and great shall be the abundance of their peace" (Ps. LIV. 14). Proceeding on their way, they at last sat down and rested themselves.

Next: Chapter XLVII. A Vexata Questio In Biblical Philology