Hod and Netzach, the third and fourth Sefirot from the bottom, are seen in most all texts as working together, much as our two legs do for us. (As oppose our arms, where most people typically favor one.) They are considered as functioning closely with Yesod, as its ‘wings’ with regard to their connection to Malkhut/our world.
Terms that NETZACH is associated with are; Victory, eternity, prophecy, orchestration, initiative, persistence, bitachon (confidence), right leg, “Hosts of YHWH,” and Moses
HOD is associated with: Glory, majesty, splendor, reverberation, prophecy, surrender, temimut (sincerity), anchor, steadfastness, left leg, “Hosts of ELOHIM, and Aaron.”
Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan writes about the triad of Netzach, Hod and Yesod as follows:
These are said to surround the physical world, that is, all influence and enlightenment in the physical world comes through these. (1)
Netzach and Hod are seen as relating to G-d’s governance and guidance of the world. As such the have a relationship to the angels who do G-d’s will in this world, the “Hosts of YHWH,” (on the side of Netzach) and the “Hosts of ELOHIM” (on the side of Hod).
Netzach and Hod act as “filters” through which pass the higher emanations of Chesed and Gevurah. They are also considered to be the conductors through which the G-d’s essence is conveyed from the three upper Sefirot (Keter, Chokmah, Binah) to the lower Sefirot. They are in this sense, the “source” of prophecy. (i.e., Zechariah 4:14, Revelation 11:3)
The following Zohar passage gives insight as to the role of Netzach and Hod in connecting this world to the one above. All parts of the Tabernacle/Temple are said to be a representation of the heavenly realms. Netzach and Hod are represented by the hooks:
Zohar, 2:175b – THE HOOKS OF THE PILLARS AND THEIR FILLETS SHALL BE OF SILVER. Said R. Isaac: ‘I presume that the “hooks of the pillars” symbolize all those who are attached to the supernal unifying pillars, [Translator’s note: Netzach and Hod, who are attached to the three Sefirot above them] and that all those who are below (Malkhut) depend on them. What is the significance of the word vavim (hooks; also the letter vau, the numerical value of which is six)? Six within six (vv), all united and nourished by the Spine which is set over them. And we have learnt in the Book of the Hidden Mystery (Sifra di-zeniutha) this dictum: “Hooks above, hooks below (six above, six below), all comprehended in one meaning and one name, having one and the same significance.”
Morpheus and the Merovingian.
There are two characters that exhibit different aspects of the Yesod-Netzach-Hod triad, Morpheus and the Merovingian. (Morpheus is also a main focus in our other section on Yesod and also regarding Chesed.
Morpheus hints to Neo that he has attained the level of Yesod via the Path of the Tzadik:
“… sooner or later you’re going to realize just as I did that there’s a difference between knowing the path (as he begins to learn through fight-training with Morpehus) and walking the path.”
As mentioned, there is the concept of the ‘wings’ of Yesod, which are the two Sefirot that directly interact with it. These are Moses on the right side of “force” at the Sefirah of Netzach (i.e., as prophet reaching up to G-d) and Aaron on the left side of “form” at the Sefira of Hod (i.e., as priest bringing down the restrictions of the Torah).
Yesod functions along with Netzackh on the right ‘pillar of mercy” with Chesed above it, and with Hod on the left ‘pillar of judgment’ with Gevurah above it. Each channels it dominating attributes to Yesod, which then connects to Malkhut.
Morpheus and the Merovingian represent contrasting characteristics of Yesod, each respectively leaning more to the right or left. The basic difference between the two is as follows:
Morpheus operates through Yesod along the right path of Chesed-Netzach-Yesod-Malkhut. Chesed is the aspect of unlimited mercy. This right side of the Tree of Life is also that of “force” (with the left being the side of “form.” Netzach brings with it the concept of a proactive spark that initiates things. As such, Morpheus sought out Neo. Morpheus operates on “belief” in how he relates to the Matrix.
His “world view” is well summed up when he tells Neo:
“What you must learn is that these rules are no different than the rules of a computer system. Some of them can be bent. Others can be broken.”
The Merovingian relates to the Matrix in a very different manner than Morpheus. His character relates to the function of Yesod into the Matrix world along the left path of Gevurah-Hod-Yesod-Malkhut. Gevurah is the aspect of strict judgment and limitations. Hod is the aspect of ‘reverberation’ – it reacts and judges to what comes its way. Thus Neo must go to him.
As he makes clear:
“You see there is only one constant. One universal. It is the only real truth. Causality. Action, reaction. Cause and effect.”
What the Merovingian failed to understand was how this was true only at a low level of existence.
The correct view on how things work and how we are to act recognizes the ‘Cause of Causes.” This is well stated in a recently published book as follows:
“And we must tell stories of miracles. We can only break through the vice grip that mechanistic science has on our consciousness by recognizing the role of God in everything. … Each of us experiences amazing events – from coincidences to clear miracles – in our lives. We must see the Divine acting in all these things and have the courage to tell those stories. When we do, we will see that the billiard-ball causation of the old mechanistic science is not the only force in the universe. God is in our midst with the force of cohesion rather than mere causation, bringing people and events together for an ultimate good. ‘God sent me before you’.” (As Joseph said to his brothers.) (2)
Believing himself to have correct understanding of ‘how things work,’ the Merovingian sets himself up as “judge.” In the fantastic freeze-frame below, from the fight scene in his lair, we see the Merovingian sitting at his table behind the image of a hexagon which represents the seat of Solomon. Note that the outline on the table is that of the city of Jerusalem:
The tzadik is the one who ‘makes the connection’ between the ‘physical’ world below and ALL spiritual worlds above. Yesod/Foundation is in fact called by the word “Kol” (“All”) among other names.
The Merovingian sees himself in this connective role – he calls himself the ‘trafficker of information’ and we’re told nothing goes between the worlds without dealing with him. (A key function of Yesod, as already mentioned). “Merv” (as Trinity calls him) is however, all ego.
Each of these levels/spheres/sefirot is associated with a name of G-d as well as many associated ‘cognomens’. Malkhut is linked to Adonai and Yesod is to both El Shaddai and El Chai, the latter having to do with ‘life.’
Netzach, being on the pro-active right side of the kabbalistic Tree of Life, is associated with Moses. Hod, emanating from the re-active left side, is connected to Aaron.
Looking at the idea of “life” (how we are to live) with regard to Yesod which is the “foundation” (yesod=foundation) of the characters of the Merovingian and Morpheus and how they draw from the respective attributes of the left and right sides:
Merovingian, being of the Left/Hod/Aaron/Torah represents this truth:
See, I set before you today LIFE and prosperity, death and destruction. – Deuteronomy 30:15
Morpheus, being of the Right/Netzach/Moshe/Emunah represents another truth:
The just shall LIVE by his faith – Habakkuk 2:4
Both characters had a ‘deficiency.’ The Merovingian had a warped sense of ’cause and effect’ that made no room for faith, which is based in ‘nothing we see,’ which is the aspect of Chokmah/Wisdom.
Wisdom comes into being from nothing. – Job: 28:12
Morpheus’s faith was shaken because (as the Oracle expressed), He could not see beyond his level of Binah/Understanding.
The left side draws from this upper attribute of Binah/Understanding. This is the root of the Merovingian’s ‘strength’ and Morpheus’ ‘weakness.’
Alternately, the right side draws from Chokmah/Wisdom, the root of Morpheus’ strength and the Merovingian’s weakness.
- The Bahir: Translation, Introduction and Commentary,Aryeh Kaplan, Samuel Weiser, Inc., York Beach Maine, 1979, 161.
- The Gift of Kabbalah, Tamar Frankiel. Jewish Lights Publishing,Woodstock Vermont, 2010, P. 87