It took me about 30 years of studying and working with Kabbalah to finally make the discovery that there really is such a “thing” as a “True” Kabbalah.
True Kabbalah is not a dogma. There is nothing to believe contained within it.
Kabbalah is a sacred “tool” used by initiates to assist them in ascending into higher states of consciousness and accessing higher levels of divine power.
It is also used by initiates to “hint” students toward a deeper level of spiritual awakening.
The two essential components that comprise the “tool” of Kabbalah are the Tree of Life paradigm of the spiritual process of creation, and Gematria.
Gematria is a mystical and magical way of interposing letters with their numerical equivalents to arrive at higher levels of consciousness. It is directly linked to certain versions of the Tarot that pictorially represent the ancient mystery wisdom conveyed through Kabbalah.
For the sake of accuracy, spiritual development, and even sanity, it is important to bear in mind what it is that the “mystery wisdom” revealed through higher consciousness really consists of.
The answer is: The Ineffable.
In other words, there are no words to describe the “contents” of higher states of consciousness that Kabbalah facilitates.
The closest we can really come to describing it is to say that it is “Light”.
What it REALLY is, though, is a non-verbal experience of indescribable “contact” that “satisfies the soul”, lifts the spirit, and prepares the mind to integrate higher, deeper levels of profound understanding of life.
One does not actually receive more information or more data as consciousness awakens to the deeper or higher levels. But one develops a sort of acumen permitting one to cut through data, to “transcend” it if you will, and grasp the underlying truth of any matter.
Students and teachers of Kabbalah who engage in a sort of encyclopedic exercise of amassing all of the data contained in Kabbalistic teachings are often caught up in an intellectual exercise of bloating their damaged egos.
There is a value in gathering and organizing Kabbalistic data when that activity is guided by the ineffable from within. A skilled Kabbalah teacher is careful to connect each bit of data provided to the energy of the teacher’s experience of the ineffable, so that the data serves as a sort of vehicle of connection to the ineffable for both the teacher and the student.
The data of the Kabbalah is entirely malleable, rather than dogmatic or absolutistic (to use a Korzybski term-coinage). But it is not so malleable as to mean whatever you want it to mean. It is malleable, in the legitimate sense, only to the extent that it facilitates greater integration of consciousness with the ineffable (referred to as Ain Soph, or “The Limitless” in Kabbalah).
A true Kabbalah teacher is therefore always “anchored” in consciousness to that inner dimension of “light” when teaching Kabbalah, for access to that “light” is what the teaching is about.
When degenerated into a mere intellectual exercise of rote memorization to come across as an “authority” of Kabbalah, or when used as a means of infantile fantasy to travel through a facsimile of the spiritual planes, Kabbalah is nothing but a distraction, the fruits of which will always manifest as the bitter fruits of impracticality.
Specifically, physical health problems, money problems, relationship problems, and psychological problems will abound. Often, poor hygiene is a manifestation of this “flight from reality” as well.
Kabbalah is therefore a trap for fools, as it is a tool for initatiates and initiation.
The quest for a true kabbalah has value only in the failure that it leads to. In other words, if one quests deeply enough, one discovers that the “True Kabbalah” is truly beyond dogma, beyond data. It is a non-verbal experience of spiritual consciousness development.
Let’s look at an example of how the “tool” of Kabbalah can work.
The first three attributes of the Kabbalah Tree of Life are numbered 1, 2, 3 respectively.
The first attribute represents Divine Will, the second Divine Wisdom and the third Divine Understanding.
We can “manipulate” these representations to tell us a sort of story. For instance, Divine Will plus Divine Wisdom equals Divine Understanding – since 1 plus 2 equals 3.
The meaning from this manipulation? Think about it. Open your HEART to it. Seek a deeper spiritual experience THROUGH it.
Perhaps it is telling us that God’s Will is to be Wise, and to be Wise is to be Understanding.
How can we “apply” this? You are following God’s Will when you aspire to be wise, and to aspire to be wise is to seek to understand what is really going on.
We can take this a step farther and grow a bit deeper. The number 1 represents the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet, which is Aleph. This letter hints at our intrinsic spiritual freedom to expand into oneness with the Divine, which is infinite love and spiritual light – the utter fulfillment of the soul – the state of its complete or infinite union.
Number 2 represents the Hebrew letter Beth, which suggests containment of that divine love and light craved by the soul. A suggestion here is that it is wise to contain or to preserve your spiritual light, your spiritual energy. Avoid squandering it through talking too much about it to people who are not ready to receive that much of its influence. Silence is an aspect of wisdom.
Number 3 represents the Hebrew letter Gimmel, which suggests transport. It’s association with the attribute of Understanding leads us to recognize that the power of understanding has the capacity to “transport” consciousness into deeper spiritual experience. This warns against the superficial use of understanding, which is to analyze and synthesize irrelevant data for empty distraction that may boost up pride for a while, but serves to reinforce unconsciousness.
The 4th attribute of the Tree of Life is Mercy, representing the quality of Divine Giving or Benevolence that so generously and charitably pours forth the Divine Light for all who are willing and ready to receive it. The fourth letter of the Hebrew alphabet is Daleth, which suggests a way of entry and exit. As the Divine Light pours “out” to the souls prepared to receive it, those souls pass “in” to more enlightened and empowered states of being.
The 5th attribute of the Tree is Justice, the force that counterbalances Mercy. Here is where careful limits are set on how much Divine Light flows out. Too much of anything becomes destructive.
While we receive the Divine Light as a gift, there are also things we need to do to earn it. Until that criteria is met, more than what we have is withheld, for our own protection and for the good of all.
The fifth Hebrew letter is Heh, which signifies the ability to see. Its association with requirements of preparation imposed by Divine Justice is obvious. Too much light is blinding. Just the right amount of light can enhance perception to the utmost.
Now of course it is possible to quibble with the above meanings and associations. Or, out of mere curiosity that really seeks nothing but superficial amusement, you might cry out for more data. But that would be missing the point.
One result of studying Kabbalah is the development of a new way of thinking, one that does not merely hunt for facts but rather works in alignment with spiritual growth.
There are 5 more basic attributes on the Kabbalah Tree of Life, and they associate with the next 5 letters of the Hebrew alphabet.
This suggests that in any group or system there are really only 10 aspects that comprise its completion. All other aspects are just permutations of those 10.
What is the link between this concept and the ineffable?