Four Faces of Qabalah
It was requested that something like this be presented on the site; that an overall generalization for the approach to this study might serve as an introduction for the beginner. After all, it is eventually an all-consuming labyrinth of twists and turns into a multitude of sub-topics.
The first consideration, nay, requirement with approaching Qabalah, or any other Spiritual discipline, is to possess the intrinsic quality within ourselves of a basic belief in some Supreme First Principle, a belief, hunch or gut-feeling that there is a certain something? someone? way bigger and beyond all this which we sense must have originated. The hard-core material scientists and atheists might have a problem with all this, although the atheist might reconsider in that Qabalah in no way purports any sort of god that the atheist denies. And the material scientist might reconsider in that Qabalah itself is a 'hidden science' forever verifying ancient theorems and principles that have occupied the minds of philosophers since mankind began walking upright and thinking.
Can a bird’s-eye road map of sorts describe how one might even begin with the amount of information initially presented to the bona fide tyro? I believe, yes. Even before a curious aspirant might take up the study, a general overview of what that might entail could prove most beneficial. In that case, then, the study of Qabalah might be compared to something like this, perhaps.
A young man grows up on a farm somewhere to eventually take over its workings from his father’s generation. His tutored years from the father and his accumulated practical experiences with the land and animals has taught him to see and read elemental nuances totally foreign to the city-bred. His seasoned senses begin alerting him intuitively to plantings and harvests. He feels the weather and is cognizant of rain or storm ere a cloud appears on any horizon. He sees and reads his livestock with an inner vision that warns him of severe or mild winters. His communion with Nature’s secrets and her spirits becomes second nature to him. He learns wisdom, adaptation and acceptance.
So might it be compared with Qabalah, also a life-long journey of adaptation and acceptance. It matters not when we may take up the actual conscious effort to mine and to cooperate with its revelations. Life has its own way of introducing and preparing us, knowing it or not, wanting it or not. Qabalah has many names, many forms, many cultures, many countries. We come into it gradually from many paths, experiences, traumas or tragedies; blessings and surprises sourced supernatural. It may come upon anyone at any time, in any place.
The specific word “Qabalah” may sound out ethnic origins, perhaps. The popular opinion is that the outer forms of Qabalah originated in Babylon. These forms or methods, like numbers within letters and such, were adopted into the Hebrew language during Babylonian Captivity. The ideas behind those outer vestments, however, are rooted much further back into timelessness. Subsequently, the Hebrew/Chaldea word was outwardly expressed as קבלה, QBLH (the Hebrew from left to right). Commonly the word means Reception or Acceptance (many aspirants seem to ignore the latter). It has other nuances of meaning, but these two are most basic. The structure of its outer semblance does contain certain regional roots. Those inner revelations that unfold, however, we eventually come to discover, are and always have been, universal. “All roads lead to Rome,” a familiar proverb, which may be applied to and refer to the fact that many routes can lead to a definitive end. The resulting state revealed by Qabalah is merely one route of many spiritual byways offered humanity for guiding us into Ancient Wisdom. Others might probe even further back and come to understand it as being Ageless. Long before any ethnicity, long before Genus Homo and its earlier versions, long before our galaxy even, there is Universal Ageless Wisdom. So it does not matter, ultimately, whether we take up with ‘The Qabalah’ or any other inward journey rooted from the East or West, above or below the equator. What matters at all is that we come to IT by whatever means are available to us particularly, perhaps even through the mundane, familiar and comfortable. We grow into the more serious investigations as we mature in our quest.
If the medium that entices us beyond casual interest happens to be called the Qabalah, rooted in the Judeo-Christian traditions, then what follows here proposes to introduce the reader to some of its elementary tenets.
What follows naturally, then, is: “What is Qabalah, actually?”
Ask the general populace this simple question and up comes an array of responses from the ridiculous to the sublime. Qabalah has become quite popular in the last 20 years or so, with some veins leaning to the most bizarre ends. Witness “Kabbalah Water,” and a red “Kabalah Wrist Band” to ward off negative influences. I’m sorry for that.
However, for the more sincere and discerning aspirant seeking deeper and more meaningful answers to serious inquiries, the shortest quick answer for that individual would most accurately be a ‘hidden science.’ And like all sciences, it relies on knowledge in the search for Truth. Truth of the scientific kind that does not depend on religious or philosophical opinion. The science of Qabalah is directed to a Spiritual World and spiritual truths. Unfortunately it is impossible to explain, to the scientific mind devoted to mere physical phenomena, the intricacies of Spirit. That world which Qabalah proposes to unveil also reveals the intimately natural causes that directly affect our physical universe. Not too long ago there was a debate between two very noted voices who have yet to discover the Principal Cause behind the material tapestry of our physical universe. Or if perhaps they have, they are not saying so openly.
Does the universe have a purpose or meaning |
Michio Kaku vs Richard Dawkins Debate
Published on Dec 23, 2015
“Anyone who expresses a more definitive response to the question is claiming access to knowledge not based on empirical foundations. This remarkably persistent way of thinking, common to most religions and some branches of philosophy, has failed badly in past efforts to understand, and thereby predict the operations of the universe and our place within it.
To assert that the universe has a purpose implies the universe has intent. And intent implies a desired outcome. But who would do the desiring? And what would a desired outcome be? That carbon-based life is inevitable? Or that sentient primates are life's neurological pinnacle? Are answers to these questions even possible without expressing a profound bias of human sentiment? Of course humans were not around to ask these questions for 99.9999% of cosmic history. So if the purpose of the universe was to create humans then the cosmos was embarrassingly inefficient about it.”
If humans have been around for a very short time by cosmic history, then science has been here for an even lessor period. As recently as the late nineteenth century the leading thinkers in science have deduced the universe is under the operation of natural laws, and concluded that these natural laws and forces are blindly impersonal. The universe takes no account of man; that prayerful worship is only superstition. The concept that humans are hapless victims of blunt, impersonal forces because these laws are simply mechanical only demonstrates the arrogant infancy of science in general. Scientists are assuming by these conclusions that they are the be-all and end-all; that they have reached some ultimate end where mankind is concerned. Science, it seems, is becoming the New Religion.
To all who cannot not see or even imagine anything beyond the physical appearances of our universe the above portion of that debate would seem to prove true. On the other hand, the accomplished investigative adventurer into any form of Ageless Wisdom, of which Qabalah is merely one, will most certainly come into that empirical foundation. S/he will also come to understand that the purpose of the universe was not merely to create humans. Nor would s/he presume to predict the operations or the unfolding course of the universe, or its eventual outcome, or its Intent. The Universe, and all therein, as presently witnessed by countless generations of sentient primates remains an incomplete work-in-progress.
The present collection of world scientists studying the physical phenomena of our galaxy and the whole universe beyond are working entirely from the self-conscious intellect, which, on its own, draws all its conclusions based on the report of the physical senses. All the humans’ manufactured instrumentation is geared to aid the extension of these same physical senses. Therefore the causes of all observed physical phenomena, which is merely a reflection on the invisible waters of a Universal Mind, is inadequate for the paraphernalia created through the present humans’ level of finite cognition.
Qabalah explores and reveals to the persistent and discerning the hidden laws of Nature which creates and sustains the macro-cosmic universe. Those laws which perpetuate universal existence are synonymous with the very laws which sustain us, mankind, the microcosm. The causes which sustain both lie far beyond, and within, the physical presentation before us that we have come to name the ‘known universe.’ The Principal Cause and all subsequent causes and effects remain beyond the ken of all our physical sciences. Once more, the primal initiator of this ONE UNIVERSE is Itself a Causeless Cause (let the physical scientists try to wrap their self-conscious minds around that one).
There exists a higher, inner region which lies beyond the level of intellect. The study of Qabalah proposes to develop an expanded evolution of our natural self-conscious intellect to become receptive to something the psychological sciences have just recently come to name the super-conscious. If in the quotation above science surmises humans not to have been around for 99.9999% of cosmic history, then the psychological sciences have not been around for 99.9999% of Genus Homo. The concept of the ‘super-conscious’ to the psychological sciences is very, very young, like minutes ago. However, Qabalah does introduce the inquirer into a realm of consciousness that probes far beyond the capabilities of the ‘hard’ sciences, and even beyond reach of the psychological and social sciences.
The study of Qabalah is offered to us generally through four basic venues or classifications. This grouping is not written in stone. That in itself should not be surprising with Qabalah. Different schools claim slight variations. According to one noted author, Aryeh Kaplan, there are three classes: 1) the Theoretical; 2) the Meditative; and 3) the Magical. But when we break down what these classifications are actually describing, we come to discover that essentially the same basic points are being discussed. Different authorities overlap each other with their classification breakdowns. Perhaps they differ so that the various authors do not appear to be parroting each other. If we search the Internet with the question, what pops up most commonly is a list of these four: 1) The Dogmatic; 2) The Literal; 3) The Practical; and 4) The Hidden Qabalah.
What follows is a brief outline and discourse of each.