Zohar Hadash, 62b


When [Shekhinah] ascends, it ascends from gradation to gradation, and from crown to crown, until everything is united above. And this is the secret of “The Song of Songs of Solomon.” The Song of Songs was decreed by the mouth of Elijah by means of the supernal authority. The “Song of Songs,” the praise of praises to the King to whom peace belongs, for this is the place that desires joy, for no anger or judgment is there. The world-to-come is entirely joyous, and it gladdens everyone, and thus it dispenses joy and happiness to all the gradations. Just as the joy must be aroused from this world above, so the happiness and joy must be aroused from the world of the moon in relation to the supernal world. Consequently, the worlds exist in one pattern, and the arousal ascends only from below to above.

Translated by Elliot Wolfson in “Asceticism and Eroticism in Medieval Jewish Philosophical and Mystical Exegesis of the Song of Songs.” In With Reverence for the Word- Medieval Scriptural Exegesis in Judaism, Christianity and Islam, 92-118. Edited by Jane Dammen McAuliffe, Barry D. Walfish, and Joseph W. Goering- Oxford and New York- Oxford University Press, 2003.

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