In any event, as Ar”i depicted it, there came to be a terrible, unholy crashing of vessels in the cosmic order . Essentially, that came about as follows.
It’s known that each vessel compliments and corresponds to its light and vice versa. As such, the lower the potency of the light, the smaller and less durable is its vessel. Thus, when the Infinite Light first entered into Keter’s vessel, the latter was easily able to endure that light and to stay intact, and the same was basically true when it came to Chochma and Binah’s vessels . The vessels of the lower seven lower Sephirot couldn’t endure that light, though, so they shattered in a sort of domino effect.
These seven then came to comprise the world of Nikkudim – dots or points — since they separated into distinct and independent point-like, relatively small “shells” or “shards”. And they became the basis of our world. They represent the kings of Edom who reigned for a time then died we referred to above.
 Ar”i’s teachings about this were recorded in many places including Eitz Chaim, Heichal HaNikkudim; Mevoh Sha’arim 2:2:1-11; Sha’ar HaHakdamot, Derush b’Olam HaNikkudim; etc. Ramchal laid out the details in HaIlan HaKodesh Ch. 2; Pitchei Chochma v’Da’at 31- 41; etc.
 … overall, though they did diminish to some subtle degree
(c) 2012 Rabbi Yaakov Feldman
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