Pekudei, Siman 3 פקודי, ג׳
1 א

וְאַף בְּצַלְאֵל שֶׁבָּנָה אוֹתוֹ, נִשְׁתַּבַּח לִפְנֵי הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא וְלִפְנֵי הַמַּלְאָכִים, נִשְׁתַּבַּח בָּעֶלְיוֹנִים וּבַתַּחְתּוֹנִים, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: רְאֵה קָרָאתִי בְשֵׁם (שמות לא, ב). וְכָתוּב אֶחָד אוֹמֵר, רְאוּ קָרָא ה' (שמות לה, ל). רְאֵה אָמַר בָּעֶלְיוֹנִים, וּרְאוּ אָמַר בַּתַּחְתּוֹנִים. וּלְפִיכָךְ אָמַר הַכָּתוּב, וּמְצָא חֵן וְשֵׂכֶל טוֹב בְּעֵינֵי אֱלֹהִים וְאָדָם (משלי ג, ד).

For example, Bezalel, who built the ark, was extolled before the Holy One, blessed be He, and the angels. He was praised in the upper regions and in the terrestrial regions, as it is said: See, I have called by name Bezalel (Exod. 31:2) and See, the Lord hath called by name Bezalel (ibid. 35:30). The word see in the former verse speaks of the upper regions, and the word see in the latter verse refers to the terrestrial regions. Thus Scripture says: So shalt thou find grace and favor in the sight of God and man (Prov. 3:4).

2 ב

אִישׁ אֱמוּנוֹת רַב בְּרָכוֹת (משלי כח, כ), זֶה מֹשֶׁה שֶׁנִּתְמַנָּה גִזְבָּר עַל הַמִּשְׁכָּן. וְשָׁנוּ רַבּוֹתֵינוּ, אֵין עוֹשִׂין שְׂרָרָה עַל הַצִּבּוּר פָּחוֹת מִשְּׁנַיִם אֶלָּא לְמֹשֶׁה שֶׁהָיָה נֶאֱמָן, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: לֹא כֵן עַבְדִּי מֹשֶׁה בְּכָל בֵּיתִי נֶאֱמָן הוּא (במדבר יב, ז).

A faithful man shall abound with blessings (ibid. 28:20). This refers to Moses, who was appointed treasurer of the Tabernacle. Our sages tell us that no less than two men must be appointed as overseer of a community, but regarding Moses, who was most trustworthy, it is said: My servant Moses is not so; he is trusted in all My house (Num. 12:7).

3 ג

דָּבָר אַחֵר, כְּתִיב: ה' בְּחָכְמָה יָסַד אָרֶץ וְגוֹ' (משלי ג, יט) וְאוֹמֵר: וָאֲמַלֵּא אֹתוֹ רוּחַ אֱלֹהִים בְּחָכְמָה (שמות לא, ג). לְלַמֶּדְךָ, שֶׁהַמִּשְׁכָּן שָׁקוּל כְּנֶגֶד כָּל הָעוֹלָם, וּכְנֶגֶד יְצִירַת הָאָדָם שֶׁהוּא עוֹלָם קָטָן. כֵּיצַד, כְּשֶׁבָּרָא הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא אֶת עוֹלָמוֹ, כִּילוּד אִשָּׁה בְּרָאוֹ. מַה יְּלוּד אִשָּׁה מַתְחִיל מִטַּבּוּרָם וּמוֹתֵחַ לְכָאן וּלְכָאן לְאַרְבָּעָה צְדָדִין, כָּךְ הִתְחִיל הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא לִבְרֹאת אֶת עוֹלָמוֹ מֵאֶבֶן שְׁתִיָהּ תְּחִלָהּ, וּמִמֶּנָּה הֻשְׁתַּת הָעוֹלָם. וְלָמָּה נִקְרָא שְׁמָהּ אֶבֶן שְׁתִיָּה, מִפְּנֵי שֶׁמִּמֶּנָּה הִתְחִיל הָקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא לִבְרֹאת אֶת עוֹלָמוֹ. וּבָרָא בֵּית הַמִּקְדָּשׁ לְמַעְלָה, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: מָכוֹן לְשִׁבְתְּךָ פָּעַלְתָּ ה' (שמות טו, יז). אַל תִּקְרָא מָכוֹן אֶלָּא מְכֻוָּן. לְשִׁבְּתְּךָ, כְּנֶגֶד כִּסֵּא הַכָּבוֹד, כְּמוֹ שֶׁכָּתוּב לְעֵיל. וִיצִירַת הַוָּלָד כִּיצִירַת הָעוֹלָם, כְּנֶגֶד יְצִירַת הַוָּלָד בִּמְעֵי אִמּוֹ.

Another explanation of It hath been already (Eccles. 1:10). It is written: The Lord by wisdom founded the earth (Prov. 3:19) and also: I have filled him with the spirit of wisdom (Exod. 31:3). This teaches us that the Tabernacle was equal both to all the world and to a human embryo, which is a world in miniature.7Ginzberg, Legends of the Jews 5:75, n. 20. How is that so? When the Holy One, blessed be He, created His world, He did so just as a child is born to a woman. A child starts to grow at the navel and then develops in all directions, and the Holy One, blessed be He, began the creation of His world at the foundation stone, and built the world upon it. Why was it called a foundation stone? Because the Holy One, blessed be He, began the creation of His world upon it. Then He created the celestial Temple, as it is said: The place, O Lord, which Thou hast made to dwell in (Exod. 15:14). Do not read the word as makom (“foundation”), but as mekuvan (“exactly opposite”). Your dwelling place above is directly opposite Your dwelling place below. The formation of the embryo is like the formation of the world, for just as the embryo is formed in the womb of its mother, so too the world was formed at the foundation stone.

4 ד

אָמַר רַבִּי יוֹחָנָן, מַאי דִּכְתִיב: עֹשֶׂה גְדֹלוֹת עַד אֵין חֵקֶר וְנִפְלָאוֹת עַד אֵין מִסְפָּר (איוב ט, י). תֵּדַע לְךָ, שֶׁכָּל הַנְּשָׁמוֹת שֶׁהָיוּ מִן אָדָם הָרִאשׁוֹן וְשֶׁיִּהְיוּ עַד סוֹף כָּל הָעוֹלָם, כֻּלָּן נִבְרְאוּ בְּשֵׁשֶׁת יְמֵי בְרֵאשִׁית. וְכֻלָּן בְּגַן עֵדֶן, וְכֻלָּן הָיוּ בְּמַתַּן תּוֹרָה, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: כִּי אֶת אֲשֶׁר יֶשְׁנוֹ פֶּה עִמָּנוּ עֹמֶד הַיּוֹם, וְאֵת אֲשֶׁר אֵינֶנּוּ פֹּה עִמָּנוּ הַיּוֹם (דברים כט, יד). וּמַה שֶּׁאָמַר, עֹשֶׂה גְדֹלוֹת עַד אֵין חֵקֶר, אֵלּוּ גְדוֹלוֹת שֶׁעוֹשֶׂה הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא בִּיצִירַת הַוָּלָד. בְּשָׁעָה שֶׁבָא אָדָם לְשַׁמֵּשׁ עִם אִשְׁתּוֹ, רוֹמֵז הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא לַמַּלְאָךְ הַמְּמֻנָּה עַל הַהֵרָיוֹן, וּשְׁמוֹ לָיְלָה.

R. Johanan asked: Why is it written: Who doeth great things past finding; yea, marvelous things without number (Job 9:10)? You should know that every soul, from Adam to the end of the world, was formed during the six days of creation, and that all of them were present in the Garden of Eden and at the time of the giving of the Torah, as it is said: With him that standeth here with us this day, and also with him that is not here with us this day (Deut. 29:14). What is the meaning of Great things past finding out? It refers to the great deeds the Holy One, blessed be He, did in the formation of the embryo. At the time that a man is about to have intercourse with his wife, the Holy One, blessed be He, informs the angel in charge of conception, whose name is Lailah.8Lailah’s role is described in Niddah 16b and Sanhedrin 6a. The Holy One, blessed be He, says to her: Know that on this night a person will be formed from the semen of a certain individual known to you. Guard this drop of semen, take it into the palm of your hand, and sow it on the threshing floor, in three hundred and sixty-five parts. And she would do so. She took it into her hand and brought it at once to Him who had said It hath been already (Eccles. 1:10) and said to Him: “I have done all that You have commanded. Here is the drop, what have You decreed concerning it?” The Holy One, blessed be He, forthwith decreed concerning the semen what its end would be, whether male or female, weak or strong, poor or rich, short or tall, ugly or handsome, heavy or thin, humble or haughty. He decreed concerning everything that would happen to it except whether it would be righteous or wicked.9Ketubbot 30a. That choice alone he left to the individual, as it is said: See, I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil (Deut. 30:15).

5 ה

וְהַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא אוֹמֵר לוֹ: דַּע שֶׁזּוּ הַלַּיְלָה נוֹצָר אָדָם מִזֶּרַע פְּלוֹנִי, דַּע לְךָ וְהִשָּׁמֵר בְּזוֹ הַטִּפָּה וְטֹל אוֹתָהּ בְּכַפְּךָ וּזְרֵה אוֹתָהּ בַּגֹּרֶן לִשְׁלֹשׁ מֵאוֹת וְשִׁשִּׁים וַחֲמִשָּׁה חֲלָקִים. וְהוּא עוֹשֶׂה לוֹ כֵן. מִיָּד נוֹטֵל בְּיָדוֹ וּמְבִיאָהּ לִפְנֵי מִי שֶׁאָמַר וְהָיָה הָעוֹלָם, וְאוֹמֵר לְפָנָיו, עָשִׂיתִי כְּכֹל אֲשֶׁר צִוִּיתָנִי, וְטִפָּה זוֹ מַה תְּהֵא נִגְזָר עָלֶיהָ. מִיָּד הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָרוּךְ הוּא גּוֹזֵר עַל הַטִּפָּה מַה יְּהֵא בְסוֹפָהּ, אִם זָכָר אִם נְקֵבָה, אִם חַלָּשׁ אוֹ גִבּוֹר, אִם עָנִי אִם עָשִׁיר, אִם קָצָר אוֹ אָרוֹךְ, אִם מְכֹעָר אוֹ נָאֶה, אִם עָבֶה אוֹ דַק, אִם בָּזוּי אוֹ גַס. וְכֵן גּוֹזֵר עַל כָּל קוֹרוֹתָיו. אֲבָל אִם צַדִּיק אִם רָשָׁע, לֹא, אֶלָא הַדָּבָר הַהוּא נוֹתְנוֹ בְּיָדוֹ שֶׁל אָדָם בִּלְבָד, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: רְאֵה נָתַתִּי לְפָנֶיךָ הַיּוֹם אֶת הַחַיִּים וְאֶת הַטּוֹב, וְאֶת הַמָּוֶת וְאֶת הָרָע (דברים ל, טו).

The Holy One, blessed be He, would summon the angel in charge of souls10See Ginzberg, Legends, 1:56. and say to him: Bring Me a certain soul which is in the Garden of Eden, whose name is so-and-so, and whose form is such-and-such. All the souls that would exist in the future were fashioned with the first man, and they will exist to the end of the world. All of them were created on the sixth day of creation. They were designated to be the descendants of Adam, as it is said: Whatsoever cometh into being, the name thereof was given long ago (Eccles. 6:10).

6 ו

מִיָּד רוֹמֵז הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא לַמַּלְאָךְ הַמְּמֻנֶּה עַל הָרוּחוֹת וְאוֹמֵר לוֹ: הָבֵא לִי רוּחַ פְּלוֹנִי שֶׁהוּא בְגַן עֵדֶן שֶׁשְּׁמוֹ פְּלוֹנִי וְתָאֳרוֹ כָּךְ וְכָךְ. לְפִי שֶׁכָל הָרוּחוֹת שֶׁעֲתִידִין לְהִבָּרְאוֹת, כֻּלָּן הֵן נִבְרָאוֹת מִיּוֹם שֶׁבָרָא הָעוֹלָם עַד שֶׁיִּכְלֶה כָּל הָעוֹלָם, הֵם מְזֻמָּנִין בִּבְנֵי אָדָם, דִּכְתִיב: מַה שֶּׁהָיָה כְּבָר נִקְרָא שְׁמוֹ (קהלת ו, י). מִיָּד הוֹלֵךְ הַמַּלְאָךְ וּמֵבִיא אֶת הָרוּחַ לִפְנֵי הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא. וּכְשֶׁהָרוּחַ בָּאָה, מִיָּד כּוֹרַעַת וּמִשְׁתַּחֲוָה לִפְנֵי מֶלֶךְ מַלְכֵי הַמְּלָכִים הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא. אוֹתָהּ שָׁעָה אוֹמֵר הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא לָרוּחַ, הִכָנְסִי בְּטִפָּה זוֹ שֶׁבְּיַד פְּלוֹנִי. פָּתַח הָרוּחַ פִּיו וְאוֹמֵר לְפָנָיו, רִבּוֹנוֹ שֶׁל עוֹלָם, דַּי לִי הָעוֹלָם שֶׁהָיִיתִי דָר מִיּוֹם שֶׁבְּרָאתָנִי. לָמָּה רְצוֹנְךָ לְהַכְנִיסֵנִי בְּטִפָּה זוֹ סְרוּחָה, שֶׁאֲנִי קְדוֹשָׁה וּטְהוֹרָה, וַאֲנִי גְזוּרָה מִגִּזְרַת כְּבוֹדֶךָ. מִיָּד אוֹמֵר הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא לַנְּשָׁמָה, עוֹלָם שֶׁאֲנִי מַכְנִיסֵךְ בּוֹ, יָפֶה יְהֵא לָךְ מִמַּה שֶּׁהָיִית דָּרָה בּוֹ, וּבְשָׁעָה שֶׁיְּצַרְתִּיךְ לֹא יְצַרְתִּיךְ אֶלָּא לְטִפָּה זוֹ. מִיָּד מַכְנִיסוֹ הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא לְשָׁם בְּעַל כָּרְחוֹ. וְאַחַר כָּךְ חוֹזֵר הַמַּלְאָךְ וּמַכְנִיס הָרוּחַ לְתוֹךְ מְעֵי אִמּוֹ. וּמְזַמְּנִין לוֹ שְׁנֵי מַלְאָכִים וְשׁוֹמְרִין אוֹתוֹ שֶׁלֹּא יֵצֵא מִשָּׁם וְשֶׁלֹּא יִפֹּל. וּמַכְנִיסִין אוֹתוֹ שָׁם נֵר דָּלוּק עַל רֹאשׁוֹ. זֶה שֶׁאָמַר הַכָּתוּב: מִי יִתְּנֵנִי כְיַרְחֵי קֶדֶם כִּימֵי אֱלוֹהַּ יִשְׁמְרֵנִי, בְּהִלּוֹ נֵרוֹ עֲלֵי רֹאשִׁי וְגוֹ' (איוב כט ב, ג).

Then the angel departed to bring the soul to the Holy One, blessed be He. When the soul was brought in, it prostrated itself before the King of Kings, the Holy One, blessed be He. At that time the Holy One, blessed be He, says to the soul: Enter the semen that is in this one’s hand. The soul opens its mouth and cries out: “Master of the Universe, I have always been satisfied with the place in which I dwelt from the day you created me, why do You desire that I enter this putrid drop? Now I am holy and pure, but then I will be cut off from the place of Thy glory.” Thereupon the Holy One, blessed be He, replied: The place which you are to enter is better for you than where you have dwelt. From the moment I created you it was only for this drop of semen. Then the Holy One, blessed be He, forced him to enter there though against his will. After that the angel turned around and placed the soul in the womb of his mother, and two angels were assigned to guard it lest it go out and fall. He placed a lighted candle at his head, as it is said: Oh, that I were as in the months of old, as in the days when God watched over me; when His light shined over my head (Job 29:2).

7 ז

וּמַבִּיט וְרוֹאֶה מִסּוֹף הָעוֹלָם וְעַד סוֹפוֹ. נוֹטְלוֹ הַמַּלְאָךְ מִשָּׁם וּמוֹלִיכוֹ לְגַן עֵדֶן וּמַרְאֶה לוֹ הַצַּדִּיקִים יוֹשְׁבִין בְּכָבוֹד וְעַטְרוֹתֵיהֶם בְּרָאשֵׁיהֶם. וְאוֹמֵר הַמַּלְאָךְ לְאוֹתוֹ הָרוּחַ, תֵּדַע לְךָ מִי הֵם אֵלּוּ. אוֹמֵר לוֹ הָרוּחַ, לֹא אֲדוֹנִי. חוֹזֵר הַמַּלְאָךְ וְאוֹמֵר לוֹ: הַלָּלוּ שֶׁאַתָּה רוֹאֶה, נוֹצְרוּ בַתְּחִלָּה כְּמוֹתְךָ בְּתוֹךְ מְעֵי אִמָּן וְיָצְאוּ לָעוֹלָם וְשָׁמְרוּ הַתּוֹרָה וְהַמִּצְוֹת, לְפִיכָךְ זָכוּ וְנִזְדַּמְּנוּ לְטוֹבָה זוֹ שֶׁאַתָּה רוֹאֶה. דַּע לְךָ, שֶׁסּוֹפְךָ לָצֵאת לָעוֹלָם. וְאִם תִּזְכֶּה וְתִשְׁמֹר הַתּוֹרָה שֶׁל הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא, תִּזְכֶּה לְכָךְ וְלַיְּשִׁיבָה שֶׁל אֵלּוּ. וְאִם לָאו, דַּע וּרְאֵה שֶׁתִּזְכֶּה לְמָקוֹם אַחֵר.

He looked about and peered from one end of the world to the other. The angel took him and led him into the Garden of Eden and showed him the righteous ones sitting there in honor, with crowns on their heads. The angel said to him: “O soul, do you know who these are?” And the soul replied: “No, my master.” Whereupon the angel told him: “These that you see were formed at first, like you, in the womb of their mothers, and then went out into the world. They observed the Torah and the commandments, and therefore were deserving and were selected for this beautiful place that you see. Know that when you leave this world, if you are worthy and keep the law of the Holy One, blessed be He, you will merit sitting among these. But if not, be assured, you will be assigned to another place.”

8 ח

לָעֶרֶב, מוֹלִיכוֹ לְגֵיהִנָּם. וּמַרְאֶה לוֹ שָׁם אֶת הָרְשָׁעִים שֶׁמַּלְאֲכֵי חַבָּלָה מַכִּים אוֹתָן בְּמַקְלוֹת שֶׁל אֵשׁ, וְקוֹרְאִין וַי וַי וְאֵינָם מְרַחֲמִים עֲלֵיהֶם. וְאוֹמֵר לוֹ עוֹד אוֹתוֹ מַלְאָךְ לְאוֹתוֹ הָרוּחַ, תֵּדַע מִי הֵן אֵלּוּ. וְאוֹמֵר: לֹא אֲדוֹנִי. וְאוֹמֵר לוֹ הַמַּלְאָךְ, אֵלּוּ הַנִּשְׂרָפִין, נוֹצְרוּ כְּמוֹתְךָ וְיָצְאוּ לָעוֹלָם וְלֹא שָׁמְרוּ הַתּוֹרָה וְחֻקּוֹתָיו שֶׁל הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא, לְכָךְ בָּאוּ לְחֶרְפָּה זוֹ שֶׁאַתָּה רוֹאֶה. וְאַתָּה דַע לְךָ, שֶׁסּוֹפְךָ לָצֵאת לָעוֹלָם, וֶהֱוֵי צַדִּיק וְאַל תְּהִי רָשָׁע, וְתִזְכֶּה וְתִחְיֶה לָעוֹלָם הַבָּא. וּמִנַּיִן שֶׁהוּא כֵן. שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: כִּי בֵן הָיִיתִי לְאָבִי רַךְ וְיָחִיד לִפְנֵי אִמִּי, וַיֹּרֵנִי וַיֹּאמֶר לִי יִתְמָךְ דִּבָרַי לִבֶּךָ, שְׁמֹר מִצְוֹתַי וֶחְיֵּה (משלי ד, ג-ד).

That evening he led him to the netherworld and showed him the wicked ones whom the demons were smiting with brands of fire and who were crying: “Woe is me, woe is me,” and none had mercy for them. The angel then said to the soul: “Do you know who these are?” And he replied: “No, my master.” Whereupon the angel told him: “These are the ones who will be consumed. They were formed like you and went out into the world, but they did not keep the Torah and the statutes of the Holy One, blessed be He, and that is why they have come to this disgraceful end that you are witnessing. Be assured that you will ultimately leave this world, but if you are righteous and not wicked, you will be worthy to enjoy life in the world-to-come.” How do we know that this is so? From the fact that it is said: For I was a son unto my father, tender and an only one in the sight of my mother. And he taught me, and said unto me: “Let thy heart hold fast upon My words, keep My commandments and live” (Prov. 4:3–4).

9 ט

כִּי בֵן הָיִיתִי לְאָבִי, קֹדֶם שֶׁיָּצָאתִי מִמְּעֵי אִמִּי, הָיִיתִי בְּנוֹ שֶׁל הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא, כִּי כֵן יִסְּרַנִּי כְּמוֹ הָאָב שֶׁמְּיַסֵּר אֶת בְּנוֹ. רַךְ וְיָחִיד לִפְנֵי אִמִּי, הָעֵת שֶׁהָיִיתִי רַךְ וְהָיִיתִי יָחִיד שֶׁלֹּא הָיָה שׁוּם אָדָם בַּחֲבוּרָתִי לִפְנֵי אִמִּי. וַיֹּרֵנִי הַמַלְאָךְ וַיֹּאמֶר לִי, יִתְמָךְ דְּבָרַי לִבֶּךָ שְׁמֹר מִצְוֹתַי וֶחְיֵה, כְּמוֹ שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר לְעֵיל. וּלְכָךְ עַל הַכֹּל מַזְהִירוֹ הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא. וּמְטַיֵּל אוֹתוֹ הַמַּלְאָךְ מִן הַבֹּקֶר וְעַד הָעֶרֶב, וּמַרְאֶה לוֹ מָקוֹם שֶׁהוּא עָתִיד לָמוּת בּוֹ וּמָקוֹם שֶׁהוּא עָתִיד לְהִקָּבֵר בּוֹ, וְאַחַר כָּךְ מוֹלִיכוֹ וּמְטַיְּלוֹ עַל כָּל הָעוֹלָם וּמַרְאֶה לוֹ אֶת הַצַּדִּיקִים וְאֶת הָרְשָׁעִים, וּמַרְאֶה לוֹ הַכֹּל. וּבָעֶרֶב חוֹזְרוֹ לְתוֹךְ מְעֵי אִמּוֹ, וְהַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא עוֹשֶׂה לוֹ שָׁם בְּרִיחַ וּדְלָתַיִם, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וַיָּסֶךְ בִּדְלָתַיִם יָם (איוב לח, ח). וּכְתִיב: וָאָשִׂם דְּבָרַי בְּפִיךָ וּבְצֵל יָדִי כִּסִּיתִיךָ (ישעיה נא, טז). עוֹמֵד וְאוֹמֵר לוֹ הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא, עַד פֹּה תָבוֹא וְלֹא תֹסִיף וְגוֹ' (איוב לח, יא).

For I was a son unto my father indicates that before I left my mother’s womb I was the son of the Holy One, blessed be He, who rebuked me as a father rebukes his son. Tender and an only one in the sight of my mother alludes to the time I was tender and alone and no one was with me in my mother’s womb. Then the angel instructed me and told me: “Take my words to heart, keep my commandments and it shall be as described above.” The Holy One, blessed be He, then warned him concerning everything that would transpire, and the angel led him about from morning until evening. He showed him where he would die and where he would be buried. Then he led him about and walked with him through the world, showing him the righteous and the wicked and everything else. In the evening he brought him back to his mother’s womb. The Holy One, blessed be He, fashioned bolts and doors (Job 38:10) before him, as it is said: Or who shut up the sea with the doors? (ibid., v. 8), and I have put My words in thy mouth, and have covered thee in the shadow of My hand (Isa. 51:6). Then He said to him: Thus far shalt you come, but no farther (Job 38:11).

10 י

וְהַוָּלָד הוּא מֻנָּח בִּמְעֵי אִמּוֹ תְּשַׁע חֳדָשִׁים ג' חֳדָשִׁים הָרִאשׁוֹנִים הַוָּלָד הוּא בִּמְעֵי אִמּוֹ בְּמָדוֹר הַתַּחְתּוֹן, וְהַשְּׁלֹשָה חֳדָשִׁים הַשְּׁנִיִּים דָּר בְּמָדוֹר הָאֶמְצָעִי, וְהָאַחֲרוֹנִים דָּר בְּמָדוֹר הָעֶלְיוֹן. וּכְשֶׁמַּגִּיעָ זְמַנּוֹ לָצֵאת לַאֲוִיר הָעוֹלָם, הוּא מִתְגּוֹלֵל וְיוֹרֵד בְּרֶגַע אֶחָד מִן הָעֶלְיוֹן לָאֶמְצָעִי וּמִן הָאֶמְצָעִי לָאַחֲרוֹן. וּמִכָּל מַה שֶּׁאִמּוֹ אוֹכֶלֶת וְשׁוֹתָה בָּרִאשׁוֹנָה, הוּא אוֹכֵל וְשׁוֹתֶה, וְאֵינוֹ מוֹצִיא רֶעִי. לְפִיכָךְ נֶאֱמַר, עֹשֶׂה גְדֹלוֹת עַד אֵין חֵקֶר וְנִפְלָאוֹת עַד אֵין מִסְפָּר (איוב ט, י).

The child remains in the womb of his mother for nine months. The first three months the child dwells in the lowest part of the mother’s womb; the next three months he dwells in the middle part; and the last three months he dwells in the upper part. When the time arrives for him to enter the light of the world, he rolls downward and descends in a single moment from the upper to the middle and from the middle to the lower part of the womb. He eats and drinks what his mother eats and drinks from the very beginning, so that he will not depart from her hungry. Hence Scripture says: Who doeth great things and unsearchable, marvelous things without number (Job 5:9).

11 יא

לַסּוֹף מַגִּיעַ זְמַנּוֹ לָצֵאת לַאֲוִיר הָעוֹלָם. מִיָּד בָּא אוֹתוֹ הַמַּלְאָךְ וְאוֹמֵר לוֹ בְּאוֹתָהּ שָׁעָה, הִגִּיעַ זְמַנְּךָ לָצֵאת לַאֲוִיר הָעוֹלָם. וְהוּא אוֹמֵר לוֹ: לָמָּה אַתָּה רוֹצֶה לְהוֹצִיאֵנִי לַאֲוִיר הָעוֹלָם. אוֹמֵר לוֹ הַמַּלְאָךְ, בְּנִי תֵּדַע שֶׁעַל כָּרְחֲךָ אַתָּה נוֹצַר וְעַכְשָׁו דַּע שֶׁעַל כָּרְחֲךָ נוֹלַדְתָּ וְעַל כָּרְחֲךָ אַתָּה מֵת וְעַל כָּרְחֲךָ אַתָּה עָתִיד לִתֵּן דִּין וְחֶשְׁבּוֹן לִפְנֵי מֶלֶךְ מַלְכֵי הַמְּלָכִים הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא. וְאֵינוֹ רוֹצֶה לָצֵאת מִשָּׁם, עַד שֶׁמַּכֵּהוּ וּמְכַבֶּה לוֹ אֶת הַנֵּר שֶׁהוּא דָּלוּק עַל רֹאשׁוֹ וּמוֹצִיאוֹ לַאֲוִיר הָעוֹלָם בְּעַל כָּרְחוֹ. מִיָּד שׁוֹכֵחַ הַתִּינוֹק כָּל מַה שֶּׁרָאָה בִיצִיאָתוֹ וְכָל מַה שֶּׁהוּא יוֹדֵעַ. וְלָמָּה הַתִּינוֹק בּוֹכֶה בִיצִיאָתוֹ. עַל מַה שֶּׁאָבַד מְקוֹם הֲנָחָה וְהַרְוָחָה וְעַל הָעוֹלָם שֶׁיָּצָא מִמֶּנוּ.

When at last the time arrives for his entrance into the world, the angel comes to him and says: “At a certain hour your time will come to enter the light of the world.” He pleads with him, saying: “Why do you wish me to go out into the light of the world?” The angel replies: “You know, my son, that you were formed against your will; against your will you will be born; against your will you will die; and against your will you are destined to give an accounting before the King of Kings, the Holy One, blessed be He”. Nevertheless, he remained unwilling to leave, and so the angel struck him with the candle that was burning at his head. Thereupon he went out into the light of the world, though against his will. Upon going out the infant forgot everything he had witnessed and everything he knew. Why does the child cry out on leaving his mother’s womb? Because the place wherein he had been at rest and at ease was irretrievable and because of the condition of the world into which he must enter.

12 יב

בְּאוֹתָהּ שָׁעָה מִתְחַלְּפִים עָלָיו שִׁבְעָה עוֹלָמוֹת. עוֹלָם רִאשׁוֹן, דּוֹמֶה לְמֶלֶךְ, שֶׁהַכֹּל שׁוֹאֲלִין בִּשְׁלוֹמוֹ וּמִתְאַוִּין הַכֹּל לִרְאוֹתוֹ, וּמְחַבְּקִין וּמְנַשְּׁקִין אוֹתוֹ, מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהוּא בֶּן שָׁנָה. עוֹלָם שֵׁנִי, דּוֹמֶה לַחֲזִיר, שֶׁהוּא שׁוֹגֵשׁ בָּאֲשְׁפַּתּוֹת, כָּךְ הַוָּלָד שׁוֹגֵשׁ בְּצוֹאָה כְּשֶׁהוּא בֶּן שְׁנָתָיִם. עוֹלָם שְׁלִישִׁי, דּוֹמֶה לִגְדִי, שֶׁהוּא מְרַקֵּד לְכָאן וּלְכָאן בְּמִרְעֶה טוֹב לִפְנֵי אִמּוֹ, כָּךְ הַתִּינוֹק מִתְעַנֵּג לִפְנֵי אָבִיו וְאִמּוֹ וּמְרַקֵּד לְכָאן וּלְכָאן וּמְשַׂחֵק וְהַכֹּל שְׂמֵחִים בּוֹ. אֵימָתַי, כְּשֶׁהוּא בֶּן חָמֵשׁ. עוֹלָם רְבִיעִי, דּוֹמֶה לְסוּס שֶׁהוּא מְהַלֵּךְ בִּסְטַרְיוֹת. וְאֵימָתַי, כְּשֶׁהִגִּיעַ עַל פִּרְקוֹ, כְּשֶׁהוּא בֶּן שְׁמוֹנֶה עֶשְׂרֵה. כְּשֵׁם שֶׁהַסּוּס רָץ וּמִשְׁתַּבֵּחַ, כָּךְ הַנַּעַר מִשְׁתַּבֵּחַ בְּבַחֲרוּתוֹ. עוֹלָם חֲמִישִׁי, דּוֹמֶה לַחֲמוֹר, שֶׁמַּנִּיחִין עָלָיו אֻכָּף. כָּךְ לִבְנֵי אָדָם מַנִּיחִין לוֹ אֻכָּפוֹ עָלָיו, נוֹתְנִין לוֹ אִשָּׁה וּמוֹלִיד בָּנִים וּבָנוֹת, וְחוֹזֵר וְהוֹלֵךְ לְכָאן וּלְכָאן וּמֵבִיא מָזוֹן וּמְפַרְנֵס לְבָנָיו וּמְכַלְכְּלָן, וְנוֹתְנִין עָלָיו מַשָּׂא וְהוּא מְעֻמָּס מִן בָּנִים וּבָנוֹת. וְאֵימָתַי, כְּשֶׁהוּא בֶּן אַרְבָּעִים שָׁנָה. עוֹלָם שִׁשִּׁי, דּוֹמֶה לְכֶלֶב, שֶׁהוּא חָצוּף לְכָאן וּלְכָאן וְנוֹטֵל מִזֶּה וְנוֹתֵן לָזֶה וְאֵינוֹ מִתְבַּיֵּשׁ. עוֹלָם שְׁבִיעִי דּוֹמֶה לְקוֹף, שֶׁנִּשְׁתַּנָּה דְמוּתוֹ מִכָּל הַבְּרִיּוֹת, שׁוֹאֵל עַל כָּל דָּבָר וְדָבָר, וְאוֹכֵל וְשׁוֹתֶה כְּמוֹ נַעַר, וּמְשַׂחֵק כְּמוֹ תִינוֹק, וְיָשׁוּב לִימֵי עֲלוּמָיו בְּדַעַת אֲבָל לֹא בְּדָבָר אַחֵר. וַאֲפִלּוּ בָּנָיו וְאַנְשֵׁי בֵיתוֹ מַלְעִיגִין עָלָיו וּמְקַלְּלִין אוֹתוֹ וְשׂוֹנְאִין אוֹתוֹ. וּכְשֶׁהוּא דוֹבֵר שׁוּם דָּבָר, אוֹמְרִים לוֹ: הַנִּיחוּ לוֹ, כִּי הוּא נַעַר וְזָקֵן. וְהוּא דוֹמֶה לְקוֹף בְּכָל עִנְיָנָיו וּבְכָל דְּבָרָיו. וַאֲפִלּוּ הַתִּינוֹקוֹת מַלְעִיגִין עָלָיו וּמְשַׂחֲקִין בּוֹ. וַאֲפִלּוּ צִפּוֹר דְּרוֹר יְנַעֲרֵהוּ מִשְּׁנָתוֹ.

Then the seven stages in the life of man begin for him. In the first stage he is like a king, for everyone inquires about his health and is eager to look at him. They hug him and kiss him, since he is only one year old. In the second stage he is like a swine that grovels in dunghills, for a child waddles in the dirt when he is two years old. In the third stage he is like a kid who skips about in the pasture. He is a delight in the eyes of his mother and a joy to his father. He skips about here and there, while laughing, and everyone takes delight in him. In the fourth stage he acts like a horse about to run in a race. When is that? At the time of maturity, when he is eighteen years old. Just as the horse prances about and preens himself, so the youth preens himself before his companions. In the fifth stage he is like an ass upon which a saddle has been placed. Men place a saddle upon him by giving him a wife who bears him sons and daughters. He roams hither and yon to obtain food and sustenance for his children. They pile additional burdens upon him, and he is overwhelmed with problems because of his sons and daughters. When is that? When he is forty years old. In the sixth stage he is like a dog, who intrudes here and there, and takes from one and gives to another and is not embarrassed. In the seventh stage he resembles a monkey, who is different from all other creatures. He asks about everything, he eats and drinks like a youngster and laughs like a child. He returns to his childish ways in discernment but not in other things. Even his children and the men of his household mock him, curse him, and hate him. When he offers an opinion they say: “Ignore him, for he is an old fool.” He behaves like an ape in all situations and in whatever he says. Even the children laugh at him and mock him, and the wild birds can awaken him from his sleep.

13 יג

לַסּוֹף הִגִּיעַ זְמַנּוֹ, בָּא לוֹ אוֹתוֹ הַמַּלְאָךְ וְאוֹמֵר לוֹ: תַּכִּירֵנִי. אוֹמֵר לוֹ: הֵן. וְאוֹמֵר לוֹ: לָמָּה בָּאתָ לִי הַיּוֹם מִכָּל שְׁאָר הַיָּמִים. אוֹמֵר לוֹ הַמַּלְאָךְ, כְּדֵי לְהוֹצִיאֲךָ מִן הָעוֹלָם, כִּי הִגִּיעַ זְמַנְּךָ לְהִפָּטֵר. מִיָּד מַתְחִיל בּוֹכֶה וּמַשְׁמִיעַ קוֹלוֹ מִסּוֹף הָעוֹלָם וְעַד סוֹפוֹ. וְאֵין הַבְּרִיּוֹת מַכִּירִין וְלֹא שׁוֹמְעִין אֶת קוֹלוֹ, חוּץ מִן הַתַּרְנְגוֹל בִּלְבָד. וְאוֹמֵר לַמַּלְאָךְ, הֲלֹא כְּבָר הוֹצֵאתַנִי מִשְּׁנֵי עוֹלָמוֹת וְהִכְנַסְתַּנִי בְּזֶה הָעוֹלָם. וְאוֹמֵר לוֹ הַמַּלְאָךְ, וַהֲלֹא כְּבָר אָמַרְתִּי לְךָ, שֶׁעַל כָּרְחֲךָ נוֹצַרְתָּ, וְעַל כָּרְחֲךָ נוֹלַדְתָּ, וְעַל כָּרְחֲךָ אַתָּה חָי, וְעַל כָּרְחֲךָ אַתָּה מֵת, וְעַל כָּרְחֲךָ אַתָּה עָתִיד לִתֵּן דִּין וְחֶשְׁבּוֹן לִפְנֵי הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא.

Finally, as his end draws near, the angel comes to him and asks: “Do you not recognize me?” And he answers: “Yes, but why do you come to me on this day of all days?” The angel replies: “To take you from this world; the time of your departure has come.” He begins to cry out immediately, and his voice can be heard from one end of the earth to the other, but no one recognizes or heeds his voice except a crowing cock. He says to the angel: “Have you not already taken me out of two worlds and brought me into this one?” And the angel responds: “Did I not tell you that you were formed against your will, that you were born against your will, that you would live against your will, and that ultimately you will have to render an accounting before the Holy One, blessed be He, against your will?”

14 יד

וְהֵן הֵן אַרְבָּעָה מַחֲנוֹת שֶׁהֶרְאָה הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא לְאֵלִיָּהוּ זִכְרוֹנוֹ לִבְרָכָה, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: צֵא וְעָמַדְתָּ בָהָר וְגוֹ' (מלכים א יט, יא). אָמַר לוֹ: אֵלִיָּהוּ, מַה הֵן אֵלּוּ אַרְבָּעָה מַחֲנוֹת שֶׁאַתָּה רוֹאֶה. אָמַר לוֹ: רִבּוֹן הָעוֹלָמִים, אֵינִי יוֹדֵעַ. אָמַר לוֹ הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא, אֵלּוּ אַרְבָּעָה עוֹלָמִים שֶׁאָדָם עוֹבֵר עֲלֵיהֶם. אֵלּוּ הֵם, רוּחַ גְּדוֹלָה וְחָזָק (מלכים א יט, יא), הוּא הָעוֹלָם הַזֶּה, שֶׁהוּא דוֹמֶה לָרוּחַ שֶׁהוּא עוֹבֵר. וְאַחַר הָרוּחַ רַעַשׁ (מלכים א יט, יא), אַחַר הָעוֹלָם הַזֶּה יוֹם הַמִּיתָה שֶׁדּוֹמֶה לָרַעַשׁ שֶׁמַּרְעִישׁ כָּל גּוּפוֹ שֶׁל אָדָם. וְאַחַר הָרַעַשׁ אֵשׁ (מלכים א יט, יב), הוּא אַחַר הַמִּיתָה, דִּינָהּ שֶׁל גֵּיהִנָּם, שֶׁהוּא כֻּלּוֹ אֵשׁ. וְאַחַר הָאֵשׁ קוֹל דְּמָמָה דַקָּה, אַחַר דִּינָהּ שֶׁל גֵּיהִנָּם, זֶהוּ יוֹם הַדִּין הַגָּדוֹל, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: כִּי גָּדוֹל יוֹם וְגוֹ' (יואל ב, יא). אַל יִשָּׁאֵר בּוֹ אֶלָּא הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא לְבַדּוֹ בְעוֹלָמוֹ בִלְבָד, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וְנִשְׂגַּב ה' לְבַדּוֹ בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא (ישעיה ב, יא).

These are the four camps that the Holy One, blessed be He, revealed to Elijah of blessed memory, as it is said: Go forth, and stand upon the mountain before the Lord and behold, etc. (I Kings 19:11). Elijah said to Him: “What are they?” These are the four camps that you will see. He told Him: “Master of the Universe, I do not know what they are.” The Holy One, blessed be He, replied: These are the four experiences a man undergoes. They are: The strong and mighty winds of this world, for man’s days are as a wind that passeth by. After the wind comes the earthquake, which corresponds to the day of death, for death is like an earthquake, causing the body of man to quake. After the earthquake comes fire, and after death comes the judgment of the netherworld, which is composed of fire. Following the fire there is a still, small voice, and after the judgment of the netherworld there is this great day of judgment, as is said. For great is the day of the Lord (Joel 2:11). And none shall remain in His world except the Holy One, blessed be He, as it is said: And the Lord alone shall be exalted on that day (Isa. 2:11).

15 טו

וְעָלָיו הוּא מְפֹרָשׁ בַּקַּבָּלָה עַל יְדֵי דָוִד מֶלֶךְ יִשְׂרָאֵל, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: לֹא נִכְחַד עָצְמִי מִמֶּךָּ אֲשֶׁר עֻשֵּׂיתִי בַסֵּתֶר רֻקַּמְתִּי בְּתַחְתִּיּוֹת אָרֶץ (תהלים קלט, טו), בְּמָדוֹר הַתַּחְתּוֹן שֶׁבִּמְעֵי אִמּוֹ.

This is explained in the tradition by David, king of Israel, as is said: My frame was not hidden from Thee, when I was made in secret and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth (Ps. 139:15). This refers to the lowest portion of the mother’s womb.

16 טז

דָּבָר אַחֵר רֻקַּמְתִּי בְּתַחְתִּיּוֹת אָרֶץ הֱוֵי, בָּרוּךְ אֲשֶׁר יָצַר אֶת הָאָדָם בְּחָכְמָה, כְּמוֹ שֶׁבָרָא שָׁמַיִם וָאָרֶץ בְּחָכְמָה, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: ה' בְּחָכְמָה יָסַד אָרֶץ וְגוֹ' (משלי ג, יט). וּבִבְצַלְאֵל אוֹמֵר, וָאֲמַלֵּא אֹתוֹ רוּחַ אֱלֹהִים בְּחָכְמָה וּבִתְבוּנָה וּבְדַעַת (שמות לא, ג). בְּמַה שֶּׁבָּרָא הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא עוֹלָמוֹ וְיָצַר אֶת הָאָדָם בְּצַלְאֵל וְעָשָׂה עִמּוֹ הַמִּשְׁכָּן. וְעוֹד שֶׁאָמַר, ה' בְּחָכְמָה יָסַד אָרֶץ וּבְדַעְתּוֹ שְׁחָקִים נִבְקָעוּ (משלי ג, כ), וּכְתִיב: וָאֲמַלֵּא אֹתוֹ וְגוֹ', הֲרֵי שְׁלֹשָׁה עוֹלָמוֹת, מַה שֶּׁאוֹמֵר בָּזֶה, אוֹמֵר בָּזֶה. הֱוֵי, עֹשֶׂה גְדֹלוֹת עַד אֵין חֵקֶר וְגוֹ'.

Another comment on Curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Blessed be He, who fashioned man with wisdom just as He created the earth with wisdom, as is said: The Lord with wisdom founded the earth (Prov. 3:19). Concerning Bezalel it is stated: He hath filled him with the spirit of God, in wisdom and understanding, and in knowledge (Exod. 35:31). The very attributes with which the Holy One, blessed be he, created His world and fashioned man were possessed by Bezalel. And he constructed the Tabernacle. Furthermore it is stated: The Lord by wisdom founded the earth; by understanding He established the heavens; by His knowledge the depths were broken up (Prov. 3:19–20). And about Bezalel it is written: And he hath filled him with the spirit of God, in wisdom and in understanding, and in knowledge (Exod. 35:31). The three attributes mentioned in the verse are referred to in the other: Therefore who doeth great things and unsearchable, marvelous things without number (Job 5:9).

17 יז

כְּשֶׁרָצָה הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא לַעֲשׂוֹת הָאָדָם, אָמַר לַתּוֹרָה, נַעֲשֶׂה אָדָם וְגוֹ' (בראשית א, כו). אָמְרָה לְפָנָיו, רִבּוֹן הָעוֹלָמִים, הָאָדָם שֶׁאַתָּה רוֹצֶה לַעֲשׂוֹת, קְצַר יָמִים וּשְׂבַע רֹגֶז (איוב יד, א), יָבֹא לִידֵי חֵטְא. וְאִם אֵין אַתָּה מַאֲרִיךְ אַפְּךָ עִמּוֹ, רָאוּי שֶׁלֹּא בָא לָעוֹלָם. אָמַר, וְעַל חִנָּם נִקְרֵאתִי אֶרֶךְ אַפַּיִם וְרַב חֶסֶד (במדבר יד, יח). הִתְחִיל מְקַבֵּץ אֶת גּוּפוֹ שֶׁל אָדָם הָרִאשׁוֹן מֵאַרְבַּע רוּחוֹת הָעוֹלָם, כְּדֵי שֶׁלֹּא תֹאמַר הָאָרֶץ, אֵין עֲפַר גּוּפְךָ מִשֶּׁלִּי. אִם לוֹקֵחַ מִמִּזְרָח וְיִפָּטֵר בַּמַּעֲרָב, כְּדֵי שֶׁלֹּא תֹאמַר אֶרֶץ מַעֲרָב, אֵין עֲפַר גּוּפְךָ מִשֶּׁלִּי, לֹא אֲקַבְּלֶךָ. וּלְפִיכָךְ נְטָלוֹ מֵאַרְבַּע רוּחוֹת הָעוֹלָם, כְּדֵי שֶׁבְּכָל מָקוֹם שֶׁיִּפָּטֵר שֶׁיְּקַבְּלוֹ הָאָרֶץ, כְּמוֹ שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: כִּי עָפָר אָתָּה (בראשית ג, יט).

When the Holy One, blessed be he, contemplated fashioning man, he said to the Torah: Let us make man (Gen. 1:26). It replied: Master of the Universe, the man You wish to make is of few days, and full of trouble (Job 14:1), and he will sin. If You are not forbearing with him, it would be better that he should not come into the world. He retorted: Is it for nothing that I am described as Slow to anger and plenteous in loving-kindness (Num. 17:18)? Whereupon He began to collect the dust for the body of the first man from the four corners of the earth, so that no one part of the earth might say: “The dust of the body of man is mine.” If he took the dust from the east and the man wished to travel to the west, the earth of the west might say: “The dust of your body did not come from me, I will not welcome you.” Therefore He took the dust from the four corners of the world, so that wherever man traveled the earth would welcome him, as it is written: For dust thou art (Gen. 3:19).

18 יח

וּשְׁתֵּים עֶשְׂרֵה שָׁעוֹת הָיָה הַיּוֹם. בְּשָׁעָה רִאשׁוֹנָה, צָבַר עֲפָרוֹ שֶׁל אָדָם. בַּשְּׁנִיָּה, גִּבְּלוֹ מִן הַמִּזְרָח לַמַּעֲרָב, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: אָחוֹר וָקֶדֶם צַרְתָּנִי (תהלים קלט, ה). אָחוֹר, זֶה מַעֲרָב. וָקֶדֶם, זֶה מִזְרָח, כְּמוֹ שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: קֵדְמָה מִזְרָחָה (שמות כז, יג). וְרָאוּהוּ וְנִתְיָרְאוּ מִלְּפָנָיו. הָיוּ סְבוּרִים שֶׁהוּא בְרָאָם, וּבָאוּ לְהִשְׁתַּחֲווֹת לוֹ. אָמַר לָהֶן, לָמָּה בָּאתֶם לְהִשְׁתַּחֲווֹת לִי, נָבוֹא כֻלָּנוּ נִרְאֶה כָּל הַבְּרִיּוֹת שֶׁבָּרָא הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא. וְהָיָה תָמֵהַּ בְּלִבּוֹ. הִתְחִיל מְשַׁבֵּחַ וּמְפָאֵר לְיוֹצְרוֹ, וְאוֹמֵר: מָה רַב טוּבְךָ אֲשֶׁר צָפַנְתָּ לִּירֵאֶיךָ (תהלים לא, כ). וְאוֹמֵר: מָה רַבּוּ מַעֲשֶׂיךָ ה' (תהלים קד, כד). קָם עַל רַגְלָיו וְהוּא כְּתֹאַר וְכִדְמוּת אֱלֹהִים, וְהָיָה קוֹמָתוֹ אַחֲרָיו. וְהִלְבִּישׁוּ גֵּאוּת וָעֹז וְהִמְלִיכוּ עֲלֵיהֶם לְיוֹצְרוֹ, וְאָמְרוּ, ה' מָלָךְ גֵּאוּת לָבֵשׁ (תהלים צג, א). קַנְקַן חָדָשׁ מָלֵא יָשָׁן.

There were twelve hours in that day. During the first hour He collected the dust for the body of man; in the second hour He kneaded the dust of the east and the west together, as it is said: Thou hast hemmed me in behind and before (Ps. 139:4). Behind refers to the west, and before to the east, as is said: Before the east side (Exod. 38:13). The creatures of the earth saw him and feared him. They believed that he was their creator. They came and bowed down before him, and he said to them: “Why do you come to bow before me?” “All of us have come because we have seen all the creatures that the Holy One, blessed be he, has created.” And his heart was filled with wonder. He began to praise and extol his Creator, saying: Oh, how abundant is Thy goodness, which Thou hast laid up for those that fear Thee (Ps. 31:20), and also How manifold are Thy works, O Lord (Ps. 104:24). He arose and had the appearance and the likeness of God; he was tall in stature and was clothed with majesty and glory, and he ruled over them for His creator. And they said: The Lord reigneth; he is clothed in majesty (Ps. 93:1).