Part III - The Middle Pillar
This supposition on the Middle Pillar, or the Pillar of Mildness, is actually Part III of the two previous suppositions on Adam’s descendancy, Genealogy I and II. What was proposed with those two descendancies is the esoteric construction of the Qabalistic Tree of Life, presented through millennia as a Biblical drama of fictional characters whose qualities resemble those within each of us. Depending upon how serious you, the reader, might be with all of this, I would suggest reading the two Genealogies in their entirety for the full appreciation of The Middle Pillar. Keep in mind, however, that those Qabalistic analyses do not in any way resemble all what has been said concerning Biblical explanations through the centuries. Ecclesiastics, evangelists and other ‘authorized’ commentators of the Bible have never considered Qabalah and rendered their commentaries based solely on the most superficial and basic transliterations.
About the Tree of Life: Accomplished Qabalists teach us that the ten Sephiroth ‘appear’ out of No-Thing as in a Lightening Flash, according to the Sepher Yetzirah. The paths come later, they instruct. And it is not until the Paths of Letters are manifested do the ten Spheres become realized. Prior the Paths the Spheres are in a sort of ‘dream’ state, yet impotent; a vision inanimate. The Paths and Letters activate the Spheres. The thirty-two elements of the construct show the obvious connections of the fourth dimensional apparatus. However, there are far more hidden connections. Some associations reveal themselves through number. For example; there appear no direct connections between Spheres Chokmah and Hod; and no apparent link between Sphere Chokmah and the 12th Path of letter Beth. The connections are occult by their number hints, if we have eyes with which to see. Again, there is a hidden relationship between Sphere Chesed and Sphere Yesod in another manner, this revealed by their respective colors. Every element of the Tree is intimately connected to every other. It takes meditation and thought to discover. We must work for it.
Thus the Tree of Life can be approached and examined from many perspectives: by the elements and colors, or cosmically, chemically, angelically, mathematically, astrologically, musically and through other platforms. Then there are the Four Worlds that may be examined separately. This particular supposition will use the Tree focused primarily on the human personality complex with its spiritual, mental, emotional and physical components. And, with this emphasis on the Middle Pillar it proposes to demonstrate to some extent the anatomy and alchemy of human consciousness.
One noted Qabalist said somewhere, at a lecture I believe, that if there could be such an image as an X-ray of the human soul, it would very likely appear as a construct much like the Tree of Life. Through the years I have come to see the brilliance behind that statement. The Sepher Yetzirah and its addendum of the 32 Paths of Wisdom is a combined document outlining 32 very distinct aspects or modes of Consciousness delineating qualities of the Creator reflected through us all. Some Qabalists group all the spheres and paths under one metaphorical phrase, “the 32 Teeth of God”. We cannot think, feel, say, do, imagine or plan anything in this life that is not already illustrated on one level or another within one or more of its spheres and connecting paths. Collectively we are not consciously aware of this at all, of course, and being unaware we reflect mostly the negative, primitive side of all these modes. However, those reflections are currently shinning more positively than they have ever in past centuries. Slowly and painfully, as is Nature’s pace, things are steadily improving, outward appearances notwithstanding.
Up until most recent centuries Nature (God, evolution, the Cosmos, Ain Suph Aur) has performed the principal impetus behind our evolutionary progression from sub-conscious levels, pushing past all the conscious resistances reacting back. Currently, however, there are more and more individual units of the All Consciousness who seem not only to be consciously aware of the creative process, but are becoming more so with surfacing desire to want to actively participate in this Universal Experience and Its unfoldment, to become co-creators. Recently, on the whole, the angst we harbor collectively is the question of how, exactly, do we go about doing this? How do we learn what needs to be accomplished as an individual to become an effective participant, co-creating with the Divine Principal? Political ‘isms’, corrupt at the core, mostly separate and destroy. Corporate businesses, corrupt at the core, mostly exploit. Philosophies mostly come and go. Cults mostly flash and fade. Religions, licentious at the core, and having portrayed God in so many erroneous and ludicrous ways, keep trying and mostly failing. So science has now become the new religion. And the Spirit behind everything that ever was, is, and shall be, still remains largely unrecognized, ridiculed or adamantly denied.
One answer offered, at least in the Western Tradition, lies within that X-ray, for it is also a map. The Qabalistic Tree of Life is a complete etheric ‘blue print’ of how Pure Spiritual Consciousness descended into becoming physical substance while simultaneously laying the Road Map of Return from that Matter back into Its Real First-Essence. The Creator did that for Itself, us. And we carry it within us. We need but look into it, read and follow its instruction encrypted in symbol.
The road we want to follow, if Qabalah in the Western Tradition is our chosen spiritual methodology, is called The Middle Pillar.
The Three Pillars
The Rav, Michael Laitman, is the founder and leader of a Qabalah Institute in Israel. One of his students queried him:
Question: In the book Shamati (I Heard), the term “right and left line” is often encountered. In which states are we in the left line and in which ones in the right?
Answer: These are quite difficult concepts. The right line, as a rule, is bestowal, love, emanation, Light. The left line is egoism, reception, attraction to yourself.
We must remain in two lines because a connection with man or with the Creator is built on the interaction of bestowal and reception.
The combination of both lines creates a middle line, the correct combination of properties of giving and receiving. In it, we build up a dynamic system of interconnection. For example, I receive as much as I give you, and you receive as much as you give me. By correctly adjusting our connection, we begin to feel the Creator between the two lines.
In other words, the middle line is the Creator Himself. His disclosure is built on two opposite properties, but these properties do not have anything to do with Him.
The Tree of Life is fundamentally constructed of three columns of points, illustrated as spheres for convenience, all interconnected by twenty-two lines or paths. Images of it abound on the Internet. Pull up any one of them for reference if it is not already in conscious memory. Some Qabalah schools call this simply the Three Pillars concept, as the above example. Others might refer to the Middle Pillar as a Journey through the Straights. This last has spurred classical alchemists to compare it to the passage between Scylla and Charybdis in Greek mythology. The left pillar (as we look upon the Tree in diagram) some schools call the Pillar of Severity or the Pillar of Darkness due to its northern position on the porch of Solomon’s Temple. The left Pillar was named Boaz, and is so illustrated on the High Priestess Tarot Trump.
In the supposition of Adam thru Cain – Genealogy I the original author of Genesis described the personality traits of those steeped in the way of this left path. Qabalists teach that we tread the left and the right paths up and down this Tree until we come into some sense of ourselves. This ‘left’ path is considered the path of suffering, of separative egoism. The suffering is rooted in the false premise that we are unto ourselves only, not recognizing that we carry God within us due to our inflated, separative egos fed by voracious desires. We are deluded into believing that we must make our way through this physical world by the sweat of our brow. We must fight, struggle, cajole, deceive and even kill one another for some position of safety and security over all others entrenched in the same mindset. The promulgation of this view of existence has waxed through millennia resulting in all we see around us this day. So to continue to live in such a mental state, of course, brings us nothing but more suffering, more darkness.
This is a state of perpetual spiritual bankruptcy. To continue is to receive more of the same. And we do. Collectively, populations on this planet are receiving our rewards in the form of radically changing weather patterns, more violent earthquakes, devastating fires, floods and droughts, rising seas, dwindling food and clean water sources; floating islands of plastic debris in the middle of the ocean larger than some countries; our fowl and fish food sources dead on beaches with plastic junk in their stomachs. This is because we as individuals remain blinded due to our bloated egos wanting more of everything. And now we must clamor for it even faster before it is all gone. We so desperately want to be happy. Therefore, individually we receive our rewards in the form of misery, want, pollution, sickness, various mental derangements, broken families, killer drugs, thefts, shootings, slavery, rape, murder, war. And now we have junk in outer space. The tenacity of stupidity, ignorance and arrogance is overwhelming.
The right pillar on the Tree (as we look at it) some schools call the Pillar of Mercy or the Pillar of Light, a path of spiritual bestowal and realizations altering our perceptions. On the porch of Solomon’s Temple the southern, right Pillar was named Jachin, and is also illustrated on the High Priestess Tarot Trump.
With the supposition of Adam thru Seth – Genealogy II the method by which we might change individually is outlined. The right Pillar is calling for individual surrender to THAT WHICH IS WITHIN. The left Pillar imbues us with the “little i” wanting to receive everything by our trying to make things happen for ourselves; that we know better than anyone what and how to do things for ME. The right Pillar guides us to let go of all that delusion and let guidance come from the Creator within us rather than the separative, swelling, petty tyrant egos. The right Pillar beckons us to rely solely on faith in the Creator within us.
Our personality complexes, collectively, are directly influenced from both sides of the Tree. From the Pillar of Severity, disguised as the Descendancy of Cain in Genesis, the influx descends into Yesod (our seemingly personal sub-conscious minds) via the 30th Path. The impetus from the Pillar of Mercy, outlined as the Descendancy of Seth, descends into sub-consciousness via the 28th Path.
Simultaneously both Pillars infuse Malkuth (our self-conscious body of sensations Qabalists name גוף, guph, body). From the Pillar of Severity the influx descends from the 31st Path, and from the Pillar of Mercy influxes descend through the 29th Path. It is through the blending of the influences from both sides of the Tree that we eventually come to the True Self within us, not by the avoidance of either.
Central to the outer pillars is the Pillar of Mildness. And it is the Primary Influence descending from this Center that forces us to evolve; like it or not, want it or not. The True Self does this by the action and impetus of three paths: the 24th, the 25th and the 26th.
And all of the above begins with…