Isaac (ben Solomon) Luria Ashkenazi (1534 – July 25, 1572), commonly known in Jewish religious circles as “Ha’ARI” (meaning “The Lion”), was a leading rabbi and Jewish mystic in the community of Safed in the Galilee region of Ottoman Syria, now Israel. He is considered the father of contemporary Kabbalah, his teachings being referred to as Lurianic Kabbalah.
THE TREE OF LIFE
Behold that before the emanations were emanated and the creatures were created,
The Upper Simple Light had filled the whole existence.
And there was no vacancy, such as an empty air, a hollow,
But all was filled with that Simple, Boundless Light.
And there was no such part as head, or end,
But everything was One, Simple Light, balanced evenly and equally,
And it was called “the Light of Ein Sof (Infinity).”
And when upon His simple will, came the desire to create the worlds and emanate the emanations,
To bring to light the perfection of His deeds, His names, His appellations,
Which was the cause of the creation of the worlds,
Then the Ein Sof restricted Himself, in His middle point, precisely at the center,
And He restricted that Light, and drew far off to the sides around that middle point.
And there remained an empty space, an empty air, a vacuum
Precisely from the middle point.
And that restriction was equally around that empty, middle point,
So that the space was evenly circled around it.
And after the restriction, when the vacant space remained empty
Precisely in the middle of the Light of Ein Sof,
A place was formed, where the Emanations, Creations, Formations, and Actions might reside.
Then from the Light of Ein Sof, a single line hung down from Above, lowered into that space.
And through that line, He emanated, created, formed, and made all the worlds.
Prior to these four worlds, there was one Light of Ein Sof, whose Name is One, in wondrous, hidden unity,
And even in the angels closest to Him
There is no force and no attainment in The Ein Sof,
As there is no mind of a created that could attain Him,
For He has no place, no boundary, no name.