Echad – One – 1:12

The second level in the Infinite Light is called Echad (One). Here, an intention arises, the desire to do a kindness. This desire is “Highlighted”, so to speak, within the singularity. Now, this desire for kindness is comprised of ten qualities. There is the desire for the kindness (Keter of Chesed), the insight of the kindness (Chochmah of Chesed), the understanding of the kindness (Binah of Chesed), the emotions of the kindness (Chesed, Gevurah, Tiferet, Netzach, Hod and Yesod of Chesed) and the deed of the kindness (Malchut of Chesed). All the sefirot are, therefore, present and we may now speak of them as unified and included as one within the essence. This desire to do kindness is the source of the source of Creation. This is because Creation is a form of revelation and all revelation is a function of the quality of kindness (Chesed). In contrast, the quality of restraint (Gevurah) is the withholding of revelation. For example, when one is happy, he becomes outgoing and uninhibited in revealing his thoughts and feelings to others. If a person is depressed or angry, on the other hand, he becomes withdrawn and introverted. Likewise, above, the fact that there is a desire for creation and revelation is a function of the quality of kindness. This intention for kindness becomes “Highlighted” and recognizable, so to speak. Because the desire to do kindness, along with all it’s implied sub-qualities, such as the insight of the kindness and the understanding of the kindness etc, is now “highlighted”, this level is called Echad, which is the Hebrew word for “one”. The word Echad – אחד, hints at the inclusion and unification of the ten sefirot as one simple unity. The value of the letter א – Aleph is 1. This hints at the first sefirah which is Chochmah. The value of the letter ח – Chet is 8. This hints at the eight sefirot under Chochmah (from Binah through Yesod). The letter ד – Dalet signifies the sefirah of Malchut. (The word דל – ‘Dal’ means poor. Malchut is called “poor” since it has nothing of its own and receives everything from the other nine sefirot. This will be explained later.) As mentioned before, on the level of Echad, it is applicable to use the terminology of ‘unification’ or ‘inclusion’, whereas, in the higher level of Yachid, only the absolute quintessential singularity exists.

Nonetheless, on the level of Echad, the sefirot only exist as “implied” abilities within the “simple unity” of Ohr Ein Sof. This is not a “composite unity”, such as a group of individuals who make up the unit of a nation. In the case of a nation, the members remain as separate individuals under the banner of the “concept” of a nation. There is no actual entity of a nation. Here the general entity is a “legal fiction” and the particulars are real. Neither is the simple unity of Echad similar to the “composite unit” of a continent, in which the general unit is real but its particulars are “legal fictions”. For instance the continent of North America is a real entity, but its particulars are “legal fictions”, such as the USA, Canada and Mexico, each of which break down into smaller fictions, such as the individual states of Mexico and the USA and the provinces of Canada. Furthermore, the simple unity of Echad cannot be compared to an entity whose general unit, as well as its particulars are real, such as a horse. A horse is made up of many limbs and organs, but it is more than just a conglomeration of organs. There is an actual horse, over and above the sum total of his parts. Rather, we must say that Echad is a simple unity which has no parts. This is because nothing has come out yet. The sefirot are merely implied heyulie-abilities which are one with the simple essential Self. This is because all the details are only implied, but no definite course of action has been concluded. There are still infinite possibilities, for all that has thus far been established is just the intention to create.

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