Metaphysical meaning of Maktesh (mbd)
Maktesh, mak'-tesh (Heb.)--pounding; mashing; crushing; grinding; mortar; depression; tooth socket; hollow.
Webster tells us that a mortar is a strong bowllike vessel in which substances are pounded or rubbed with a pestle; also any of various devices in which materials are brayed or crushed, as in a stamp battery, the box into which the ore is fed.
Maktesh (pounding, mashing, crushing, grinding, a mortar), a valley just out of Jerusalem where merchants traded, signifies in individual consciousness a place where there is an exchange of ideas regarding substance, life, understanding, and all the kinds and shades of thought that these merchants' wares represent in consciousness. In this place in mind, or state of mind, these ideas are threshed out; they are turned over and over in thought, are affirmed, denied, and undergo a regular siege of beating on the one hand and upholding on the other, until there is seemingly nothing left of them but a broken, confused state of mind.
This trading of ideas and opinions between the higher, more spiritual activities of our consciousness (Israelites) and the lower and more earthly sensate thoughts, such as are symbolized by the nations round about Israel, does not always result in good. It rather brings depression and confusion, and so it must come to an end, as is signified by the text.
Truth must be taught to the lower states of consciousness in us by the higher ideals, through the ministry of the I AM, which must always be kept in conscious dominion. Thus the valleys, the low, depressed and empty places in mind, will be lifted up. But they will never be lifted up so long as we attempt to reason out Truth with these earthly, limited phases of consciousness on their own error, ignorant plane. Truth can be seen aright from the spiritual plane only. "Come now, and let us reason together, saith Jehovah" (Isa. 1:18).