Public Lecture: Was presented on February 15th 2022 in IOK Room 1
This lecture is scheduled to be presented again on Tuesday March 14th 2023.
The presentation given last February was recorded and you can access this video from our Videos page, or by clicking on this direct link:
This lecture will introduce you to the most basic concepts of the mystical Kabbalah. I use the term 'mystical', because when you enter into the the mystique of the Kabbalah you are entering into the most spiritual nature of Judaism, in the same way as Sufism is the the most holy, mystical part of Islam, and Gnosis is the most holy, mystical part of Christianity.
(Updated 04 November 2022)
What is Kabbalah?
The word 'Kabbalah' means 'to receive'. Kabbalah is the key to the deeper, mystical interpretation of the Hebrew Torah, the Holy Bible of Judaism.
Kabbalah is a traditional system based in Jewish mysticism which is multi-faceted and far reaching in its teachings. It is an open source system which is not tied or restricted into any one ideology and is open to all.
Kabbalah is based upon a glyph called the tree of life which holds within it the DNA of creation of everything, anything and no-thing.
Studying this glyph gives you glimpses into the unknown and unknowable, by this I mean you reach levels of inner understanding where your lives take on new meaning away from the inert and mundane.
It is one of the many spiritual pathways lighting the route towards greater spiritual self-discovery. This radiating clarity eternally pulsates dissolving everything within its essence, until all that remains is the realisation of the endless omniscience of our true Supreme nature.
'To receive' is only possible, however, if the student is ready. Traditionally, when the student is ready, he or she will be given the teachings of Kabbalah from a master.
Where did the Kabbalah originate?
The origins of the Kabbalah are lost in the mists of time. According to Ezekiel 1:1-28, it was in the beginning of the sixth century BCE that the prophet Ezekiel had a vision of God on a throne.
Another tradition claims that Kabbalah was revealed from the Divine three times. The first revelation was given to Adam through the Archangel Raziel. The second revelation was given to Abraham four thousand years ago around 1700 BCE by Melchizedek, the High Priest of Salem. The third revelation of the Kabbalah was to Moses when he ascended Mount Sinai to meet God. On his first ascent, he received the Ten Commandmaent, the outer teachings. On his second ascent, he received the inner teachings of the Kabbalah.
The earliest known written documentation on the Kabbalah was in the Sepher Yetzirah, or the Book of Formation, supposedly written by Rabbi Akiva. Much later, in the 14th century, Moses De Leon wrote the Zohar, a profound book on Kabbalistic philosophy.
How does Kabbalah teach?
Symbolism is the language of the Kabbalah. It is in the understanding of the relationships between symbols that the inner meanings of the Kabbalah can be revealed.
The Tree of Life (in its various forms) shows us the relationships between symbols. By studying and meditating these relationships, many hidden teachings become revealed.
Examples of Relational Symbolism can be used to give parallels when decoding a group of symbols on the Tree of Life.
The Biblical Hebrew letters and their inter-relationships is also another powerful decoding tool, given that each letter is also a number.
We learn from Kabbalah in the same way that we learn all things by applying, testing and evaluating the lessons learnt
How is Kabbalah applied in day to day living?
Kabbalah is not a religion, nor is it a sect. Kabbalah is a spiritual quest; a journey of self-discovery into the Inner Being. To enter into and to apply our actions the Way of Kabbalah in daily life is a therefore a big responsibility.
Kabbalah is about accountability. The Multiverse is continually evolving and unfolding, owing to the endless energies emanating from the Unmanifest forever. As tiny as we are in the cosmic scheme of things, we are all tightly connected together by the collective unconscious. Therefore, every action we do in life, every word we pronounce and, even every thought, carries consequences, some of which can be far-reaching.
By applying spiritual principles learned from the Kabbalah in daily life changes us as human beings. The key word for applying Kabbalah is to restore balance. The Tree of Life reveals where imbalance lies and then shows the way to re-adjust them. In this way, we slowly disperse our delusions.
Certain actions and words can have a powerful effect on the person and the environment. I do not mean in the physical sense, but on another level entirely.
Once we have awoken to our hearts chosen ideal and begun to digest and comply with the teachings thus imparted, we become more aware that we are now seeing with new eyes. We start to notice a new richness glowing from within our environment and the people we meet. Inwardly we also observe a feeling of being centred, a perception of closeness and stillness. The more we actually focus and become the teachings, the greater our clearness and recognition.
If we try to practise daily towards living in the moment with selflessness, compassion, non-aggrandisement and non-attachment, we align within the unity and oneness of all things.
Selfless deeds develop perpetual emotions and thoughts towards the Divine Avatar of your hearts chosen ideal. Without any trace of desire or gratification make choices based upon the needs of others. Treat every child as your own. View every adult as a reflection of yourself. Observe the Supreme radiating within all.
As there are an infinite number of Trees, each and every person has his or her own personal Tree that mirrors the person at all levels.
The whole purpose of applying Kabbalah in daily life is to restore balance.
To be continued...