Blessed are the holy people, whose Master seeks them and calls to bring them close.

Then the holy people need to join and come to the synagogue, and whoever comes first joins with the Shechinah in one union. Come and see, concerning the first one to be present in the synagogue. Blessed is his portion for he stands in the level of the righteous in relation to the Shechinah, [for the righteous unite with the Shechinah] and this is the secret of: "And those who seek me early shall find me" (Proverbs 8:17). Such a person rises to the highest level.

Whenever G‑d comes into a Synagogue and does not find ten persons...He becomes angry at once...

And if you say, but we learned1 that G‑d immediately becomes angry when He comes to the synagogue and does not find ten people, yet you say that the one who precedes them becomes joined with the Shechinah, and is in the level of righteous?

This is similar to a king who sent a message to all the inhabitants of a city that they should gather with him at a certain time at a certain place. Before the inhabitants of the city could prepare themselves, one person came first to that place. In the meantime, the king arrived and found that person who came early and said to him: You, where are the inhabitants of the city? He said to him: My master, I came earlier than they and they are coming after me in accordance with the king's order. This pleased the king, who sat with him and spoke to him, and they became friends. In the meantime, all the people came and the king accepted them and then sent them away in peace. But if these people would not have come, and one would not have preceded them to speak before the king that they are all coming, he would immediately get angry and wrathful.

In this case also, since one preceded and is present in the synagogue, and the Shechinah arrives and finds him, it is considered as though they are all present there, because he is waiting for them there. Immediately, the Shechinah joins with him. They sit together, and she becomes acquainted with him and sets him into the level of righteous. But if one did not precede and was not there, it is written: "Why, when I came, was there no man?" (Isaiah 50:2). It does not say, 'And there were not ten men,' but rather "Was there no man?" to join with Me and to be near Me, as it is written: "the man of G‑d" (Deut. 33:1), which means to be in the level at righteous/tzaddik [who are at the level of yesod, called 'righteous'].

And He also makes a friend with him, and inquires if he does not come one day, as we have established, as it is written: "Who is there among you that fears G‑d, that obeys the voice of His servant" (Ibid. 50:10).

With Ten the world can be sustained...

BeRahamim LeHayyim: With Ten the world can be sustained: ten Martyrs who died by Roman hands, ten mystics in the Idra Rabba, ten students of the Ba'al Shem Tov. Are there ten righteous in Sodom? As the Book of Yetzirah says, Ten, not nine. The hint is that 1 x 1 plus 2x2 plus 3x3 plus 4x4 plus 5x5 plus 6x6 plus 7x7 plus 8x8 plus 9x9 plus 10x10 = the gematria of the word Shechinah. So we need Ten; we get by with a little help from our chaverim, our joined/connected group.

We need to do this work below to bring forth blessing from above in certain aspects. Which is why perhaps G‑d in the above story gets angry: there is no cup to receive the wine He wishes to pour to us. We need to work beTziBuR, which means the Righteous, Intermediate, and yes, Evil amongst us2. If we do, we will rise up like the sacred incense which too included the foul smelling yet essential galbanum.3

Bracketed annotations from Metok Midevash and Sulam commentaries
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