There are three main organs (vessels) in a human being which are the chief organs of the body. These are the brain, heart and liver. The brain is the vessel for the intellect, the heart is the vessel for the emotions and the liver is the vessel for the physical life force. The brain is the vessel for the Neshamah level of the soul, which animates the intellect. The heart is the vessel for the Ruach level of the soul, which is the spirit of life and emotions and the liver is the vessel for the Nefesh level of the soul, which is the physical life force invested in the blood. The two higher levels of the soul, the Chaya and Yechidah are not contained within vessels and are therefore called “encompassing lights”. (This will all be explained in greater detail in subsequent chapters)
Now, it is clearly observable that a vessel has three parts. There is the inner part of the vessel, which is the inner surface of the vessel that comes in contact with that which is contained in it. There is the external part of the vessel, which is its outer surface, and there is the inner part of the vessel, which is its thickness between the inner and outer walls. (This will all be explained later)
In general the emotions are called Zeir Anpin (Small Face) in contrast to Arich Anpin (Long Face). A human being has 248 limbs and organs. Likewise above, there are 248 vessels or ‘organs’ of Zeir Anpin. It is for this reason that Zeir Anpin is sometimes referred to as “The body of the King”.
(Footnote: The explanation of the limbs of Zeir Anpin is as follows: Zeir Anpin contains nine sefirot within it. The tenth sefirah is Malchut, which as we will later explain, is separate, for it becomes its own individual stature (called Nukva). Now, as mentioned above, the sefirot subdivide into subsequent sefirot. The 9 sefirot of Zeir Anpin multiplied by the 9 sefirot which each of the 9 sefirot contain, equals 81. 81 multiplied by the three parts of the vessels, (Inner, middle and outer) equals 243 (which is the numerical value of the name Avram). Plus the 5 kindnesses, which make the body grow, equals 248 (which is the numerical value of the name Avraham. This is the name that he was called after G-d added the letter Heh to his name.) These 248 limbs and organs correspond to the 248 positive commandments in the Torah. Altogether, there are 613 Commandments in the Torah. The 248 positive commandments correspond to the 248 limbs and organs in the body, and the 365 negative commandments corresponds to the 365 sinews in the body, as well as the 365 days in the solar year.)