The Potter’s Wheel
“For as the clay in the hand of the potter, so are you in My hand, O house of Israel (Jeremiah 18:6). What does כַחֹמֶר (kha-ḥomer), as clay, mean? The חֹמֶר (ḥomer), material, of glass—which even if broken can be recast, mended as before” (Zohar 1:178a).
“For the pauper will not cease from the midst of the land (Deuteronomy 15:11)—it was taught, Rabbi El’azar ha-Qappar says: Always will a man seek mercy over this measure, since if he does not come [to poverty] his son comes [to poverty]. And if his son does not come [to poverty], the son of his son comes [to poverty], as is said, בִּגְלַל (Bigelal), because for this thing (Deuteronomy 15:10). The House of Rabbi Yishma’el taught: It is a גַּלְגָּל (galggal), wheel, that rotates in the world” (BT Shabbat 151a).
“He revolves wheels by His devices, according to their deeds, whatever He commands them on the face of the inhabited earth (Job 37:12). He revolves wheels—the blessed Holy One spins revolutions in the world, bringing cloaked dazzelers to carry out His acts, then turning and transforming them. How? By His devices, cunningly spinning revolutions to generate them anew. According to their deeds—on account of human deeds: As they act, so He transforms them. Whatever He commands them on the face of the inhabited earth—because of human acts He rotates the wheels, the turn of events, in all that He commands them on the face of the earth…. Like an artisan fashioning pottery: as long as that kick-wheel keeps spinning in front of him, he can fashion as he imagines—this way or that, turning one into another—since the wheel is spinning before him” (Zohar 1:110a).