Basics in Kabbalah: Malchut

The Ten Sefirot: Divine Emanations







Malchut is the last of the ten sefirot, and the final emotive attribute within Creation (or, more precisely, the power to express one's thoughts and emotions to others).

Malchut appears in the configuration of the sefirot at the bottom of the middle axis, directly beneath yesod, and corresponds in thetzelem Elokim to the "crown" of the procreative organ (the corona in the male; the labia in the female), or to the mouth.

Malchut is associated in the soul with the power of self-expression. Kabbalah identifies three basic "garments" (levushim) of the soul which enable it to achieve expression: "thought" (machshavah), by which the soul is revealed inwardly; and "speech" (dibur) and "deed" (ma'aseh), by which it is revealed outwardly.

Malchut as a whole is often referred to as "the world of speech" insofar as the spoken word represents the essential medium of self-expression, allowing one to not only reveal himself to outer reality but to guide and influence that reality as well. Hence, speech allows one to exercise authority and "kingship," the literal meaning of malchut.

Malchut also serves as the means for establishing an identification with outer reality. Exercising kingship requires utmost sensitivity to the needs of the realm which one seeks to rule. Hence malchut demands that every agent of influence within Creation assume a recipient posture vis a vis the Divine source of all authority, for only then can the ultimate good of the mundane realm be assured.

The soul, in its meditation of Divinity, can only perceive and ascend to the higher sefirot through the "pane" and portal of malchut. "This is the gate to God, the righteous shall enter through it" (Psalms 118:20). In one's devoted service to God this means receiving upon oneself, in total commitment, "the yoke of the kingdom of heaven."

Malchut = 496, the sum of all numbers from 1 to 31. In addition to being a "triangle" (as are as well the two sefirot of tiferet and hod, as described above), 496 is a "perfect number" (a number which equals the sum of all of its divisors. The first four "perfect numbers" are 1, 6, 28, 496). Thus the ten sefirot end (reach their consummation) with a "perfect number."

The union of the last two sefirotyesod (80) and malchut (496) = 576 = 24 squared.

The beginning, middle and end of the sefirot (all along the middle axis), keter (620), tiferet (1081), and malchut (496) = 2197 = 133.

The sefirah of malchut develops to form the partzuf of Nukva d'Zeir Anpin. Beginning as a single point, Nukva d'Zeir Anpinreceives all of its 9 higher sefirot from the individual levels of malchut contained within each of the higher sefirot (the malchut ofchochmah becomes the chochmah of malchut, etc.).

The spiritual state identified in Chassidut as corresponding to the sefirah of malchut is that of shiflut (humility).

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