Similarly, before the children of Israel sinned [with the Golden Calf], at the time that they stood at Mount Sinai, the filth of the Primordial Snake was removed from them, because the Evil Inclination was made void in the world and they pushed it completely away from them. They then were united with the Tree of Life, rose up to the highest levels, and did not go down. Then they understood clearly and saw supernal visions, their eyes shone, and they rejoiced to know and hear [the voice of Zeir Anpin]. Then G‑d girded them with belts of the letters of the Holy Name [with the letter Yud above their heads, the 2 Hei's on their arms, and the letter Vav on their bodies], so that the Serpent would not be able to have power over them or defile them again [like 'Satan' did to Adam and Eve].

When they sinned with the calf, all these supernal levels and lights
[of higher consciousness] were removed from them. And the armored belts that were adorned with the supernal Holy Name were removed from them. They drew upon themselves the Evil Serpent as before, and again caused death for the whole world [as happened with Adam after he sinned]. Afterwards, it is written: "And when Aaron and all the children of Israel saw Moses, behold, the skin of his face shone; and they were afraid to come near him" (Ex. 34:30).1

Come and see: it is written at first, "And Israel saw the great hand..." (Ex. 14:31) At the splitting of the Sea of Reeds, they all saw the supernal lights which illuminated in the shining mirror
[a clear and shining vision of the spiritual force acting in the physical world, as was on Mount Sinai], as it is written: "And all the people saw the thunder..." (Ex. 20:15) By the sea they saw, yet did not fear, as it is written: "He is my G‑d, and I will praise Him" (Ex. 15:2). But after they sinned, they could not even look at the face of [Moses] the mediator, as it is written: "And they were afraid to come near him."

Come and see: it is written of them, "And the children of Israel stripped themselves of their ornaments by the Mount Horeb" (Ex. 33:6). For the armor
[i.e. the Holy Name] that was attached to them at Mount Sinai so that the Evil Serpent could not have power over them was removed from them. Once it was removed from them, it is written: "And Moses would take the Tent [of Meeting, i.e the Tabernacle], and pitch it outside the camp, afar off from the camp". (Ibid. 33:7) Rabbi Elazar said: What has this verse to do with that previous verse? When Moses knew that the supernal armor was removed from the children of Israel, he said: Surely from now on the Evil Serpent will come to dwell among them, and if the Tabernacle would stand here among them, it will become defiled. Immediately, "Moses would take the Tent and pitch it outside the camp, afar off from the camp," because Moses foresaw that the Evil Serpent would have power over them, unlike what was before.

BeRahamim LeHayyim: An amazing synchronicity between today's Zohar and Purim!

When we Israel reaccept the Torah again as one "VeKibel HaYehudim" - this time, by accepting upon ourselves the oral command of the Sages (Mordechai), we removed the Evil Serpent (Haman) and thus the potential for death from us, and for the entire Jewish world.

The past Torah portion Tetzaveh and Megilat Esther both are flowing with descriptions of garments and their spiritual potential. Above we read that we were adorned too with the supernal Holy Name. How can we dress ourselves like this again? How can our head mirror the letter Yud of the Divine Name, our arms the letters Hei, and our torso the letter Vav? The above Zohar is illustrative of how we can make a significant move back to the glory days at the foot of Mount Sinai, and accordingly, to removing the stain from our exile from Gan Eden.

The question is personal, essential, and worth contemplation as we begin to clear out all the puffy chametz and leavening from our lives and move toward redemption on Pesach.

[Bracketed annotations from Metok Midevash and Sulam commentaries]