Part 2. Truth is With Jacob
“The path of the One” is bit of a “mind field.” The Matrix is about truth/reality being hidden in multiple ways – at times very subtly and craftily. This is the nature of the various levels of klippot – the “shells” that conceal the light of G-d in the world. You may leave an area of darkness and go into light, but this new reality has its own darkness.
Each one of the “problems” or “tests” that the various characters, especially Neo, encounters, is a “nut to crack,” with the kernel of fruit within being the new truth that becomes exposed. This further enables the characters to learn more about the true nature of reality – it is a cyclical process.
For example, Neo, at various times and in various ways, does not recognize himself as “The One.”
Upon first meeting the Oracle he gets the “bad news”:
As the story progresses, it seems Neo comes to believe he is the “One” who will save Zion. Yet, much later in the story when nothing seems to be coming together for them, he firmly expresses his doubt to his mentor:
NEO: It was a lie, Morpheus. The prophecy was a lie. The One was never meant to end anything. It was all another system of control.
Neo has received more incomplete information about "the One" (this time from the "Architect"), However, it is not the same circumstances nor does it lead to the same set of possibilities.
Upon hearing this directly from Neo, Morpheus (even with all of his 'belief') seems thoroughly confused (as do the other characters). There is a whole new level of klippot to overcome.
The Oracle's insightful explanation for this phenomenon is, "We can never see past the choices we don't understand." (A criticism she correctly holds of the Architect himself.)
Morpheus, like Solomon, the son of King David, had great inner wisdom – and also like him, his ‘devil was in the details’ of Understanding (Binah).
Morpheus...he, he almost had me convinced...
This "path of the one" in the Matrix, is called "the path of the tzadik" in kabbalistic teachings. On the Tree of Life, it is mainly referring to the central path of 'harmony' between the left/judgmental and right/merciful aspects of the Image of G-d.
All three paths work together in our efforts to ascend/conform to the B’tzelem Elohim (Image of G-d). The central ‘path of the tzadik’ is initially focused on the connection between Malkhut and Yesod, but continues upward to Tiferet and Keter, an in another sense, all the way to Ein Sof.
This path is that of the ultimate "reality" which is emeth/truth. Note when Neo is 'stuck' in the Merogingian's 'train station' he has the vision of the '3 parallel paths' that lead back to 'the source.' (You can see this between the 7 to 15 second marks from this movie trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1PQ40oCLiqI.
It is interesting that Neo, like Joseph, is thrown into a hopeless prison, but it is here that he gains great insight into his path.
In kabbalistic thought, “truth” is associated with the Sefirah of Tiferet (“Beauty”) which is closely linked to the figure of Jacob. In addition to being the next ‘vertical step’ in the Path of the One/Tzadik, Tiferet also represents the concept of beauty in harmony between the extremes of total mercy and harsh judgment. This is a chief characteristic of Jacob.
The Zohar comments:
Zohar, Shemoth 175b - R. Simeon, we are told, explained thus the words, "And the middle bar in the midst of the boards shall pass from one end to the other." ‘ "The middle bar" ‘, he said, ‘signifies Jacob, the perfect saint, as we have pointed out on another occasion in connection with the characterization of Jacob as "a complete man, dwelling in tents" (Genesis 25:27). It does not say, "dwelling in a tent", but "dwelling in tents,’, which denotes that he unified the two "tents" (of Severity and Mercy). The same implication may be found here: "The middle bar in the midst of the boards shall pass from one end to the other", uniting them. Jacob was perfect in regard to both sides, the Holy Ancient and the Microprosopus, and also to the supernal Grace and the supernal Power, harmonizing the two.’ R. Simeon said further: ‘I perceive that Wisdom (‘Hokmah) is the totality of all the holy Sefiroth, and that supernal Grace (Hesed) emanates from Wisdom, and Power (Geburah), which is the prompter of severe judgment, from Understanding (Binah). Jacob harmonized both sides: the Fathers (Abraham and Isaac) signified the totality of all, and Jacob signified the union of the Fathers. Then came the merit of Jacob and synthesized both and made them one, for he signifies supernal harmony.’
In addition to balancing the “right and left” the Sefirah of Tiferet is seen as “central” to all the Sefirot and is seen as the representation of the “Supernal Groom.”
Zohar, Shemoth 136a -138b - Because of this current, we have a true Faith in this world, and all mankind can discourse of the mystery of the Faith of the Holy One in connection with these grades, as if they were revealed to and not hidden from them. Therefore it says: "And their words to the end of the world" (Ibid.), which means that from the beginning to the end of the world the "wise of heart" discourse of those hidden grades although they cannot be comprehended. And how far are they comprehended? "In them hath he set a tent for the sun" (Ibid.), because the holy sun [Tr. note: ‘Tifereth.] is as a tabernacle of all those supreme grades, and is as a light which has taken into itself all the hidden lights and the whole current of their extension, whereby Faith is manifested in the whole world. To grasp the Sun is equivalent to grasping all grades, because the sun is a "tent" including all and absorbing all; and he in turn lights up all the shining colours below. Hence "He is a bridegroom coming forth from his canopy (covering)" (v. 6), in the gleam and flash of those hidden lights which in strong yearning and desire give him tokens of their love, as to a bridegroom to whom all his friends give presents and gifts. And what is "his covering"? Eden, the "covering" which covers up all things. "He rejoiceth" from the side of the primeval light in which judgement has no place at all. "As a strong man" (gibbor) - from the side of "strength" (geburah); and note that it does not say here "a strong man", but "as a strong man", which means that Judgement is tempered by Mercy.
Neo’s jouney can thus be seen as attaining the level of Jacob/Tiferet/Truth. For this he will need to learn of and connect to all the emanations of the Tree of Life, even those of the “other side” (the Sitra Achra”) commonly called, the “evil realm.”