I've been doing some reading and thinking on the kabbalah as of late. And finishing another primary kabbalah text I hadn't heard of until recently, I
decided to try to read the zohar. I found a translation of a significant portion online. I will post a link. Now, really this OP will just be my
writing on a very small portion of the zohar which I have read so far. So there is certainly endlessly more that could be said than what I will say in
the OP. My hopes is that others may be interested enough to read from the link I provide, and perhaps they may have thoughts they could share. And I
may keep posting more if there is any interest. This turned out quite long. But I would prefer to not cut what I have written into separate posts. So
keep that in mind.
First, I think it is important to understand a significant part of kabbalistic thinking that will come into play. And that is, that there is some sort
of mystical power in language. Particularly with Hebrew, every letter is loaded with meaning, conceptually and also as representative of a number. The
Hebrew letters are seen as sort of elements of creation, along with the 10 sephiroth, which are the 10 numbers. So keep in mind this idea. Toying with
the letters is toying with the elements of creation.
I personally find the Jewish religious tradition absolutely fascinating. Try to consider the view. It almost sounds similar to what we would call the
fundamentalist view, but they take it to such an extreme that the results are much different, and interesting. With a much wider range of potential
interpretation. The torah in particular, is seen as being an absolutely perfect text. The word of God. And that is not taken lightly. Every single
minor detail you can imagine has the potential to be absolutely loaded with meaning. There is nothing that is arbitrary or coincidental in the Torah.
Spiritual illumination comes from seeing the wisdom hidden in the most minute of details in the way it is written. So they can endlessly analyze the
bible, with endless analysis of minute details and cross-referencing. If the same word is used multiple times, and in one instance is equated with
something else, then that something else can be applied to all uses of the word. And just lots of methods of extrapolating seemingly endless meaning
from the text.
There is a discussion on the significance of 'Elohim,' which is the most commonly used word for God in the hebrew bible. It goes on about how the
original names for God are Mi(who) and Mah(what). Keep and mind the letters yud and heh are in a way representative of the ultimate polarity, which
can be labelled masculine and feminine respectively. Mi being masculine with its yud and Mah feminine with its heh. They're like the initial polarity,
Mi is also the 'higher,' Mah the 'lower.' Elleh is a word which means 'these.' Elleh seems to signify manifested forms of individual existence, in a
somewhat lofty sense. It seems to me that Mi, meaning who, is like the idea of the absolute subject, like the Hindu concept of Self, the Brahman which
is Atman. Elohim is seen as being a combination of elleh and mi, mi being reversed. Thus it represents the union between subject and object, the
transcendental and hidden with the imminent and manifest. So it is by virtue of the Divine name Elohim, that Mi, the transcendental creative force,
manifested the Universe, through union with elleh in Elohim.
A few rabbis are having a discussion on the opening of genesis. One offers an interpretation of the word berasheet, the very first word, which is
translated 'In the beginning. 'Bara(he created) #h(six, in Aramaic). So, he created six. 'He' being the transcendental. There are also 6 letters in
the word berasheet. Now, if berasheet is taken to mean 'he created six,' then there is one potential interpretation one could arrive at which is
interesting. The bara, created, could be interpreted as taking on a whole new meaning. It can then be taken as an action which is done by the six.
Thus God created the six, who created heaven and earth. This is just one possible interpretation that occurs to me that concurs with certain things I
have read before. So, the transcendental created six, which also correspond to the six days of creation. Elleh, the word which is supposed to
represent the manifest universe, has a numerical value of 36, which is 6 squared. The seventh day is the shabbath, which I think may well correspond
to the transcendental. Thus, the transcendental created the six, it itself being the first existent-one. Yet it corresponds to shabbath, which is the
last day. 'I am the first and the last.'
It was said that Abraham marks the dawn of ordered, tangible existence. This is marked by the linguistics of the opening of genesis and Abraham's
name. A big part of the points they are making here revolve around Genesis 2:4, which says: These(elleh) are the generations of the heavens and the
earth, [when they were created.] I put the part that is in question in brackets. This is the straightforward reading. In hebrew, it is b'hibram. The
zohar is saying that you take b as a prefix, and take the rest of the word as being an anagram to abraham. The only difference in reading is the
switching of aleph and heh. And keep in mind that heh is the additional letter which God gave to Abram which made him Abraham, that here would mark
the beginning of his name in the anagram. So, it is saying: "In that day the Lord God made the earth and the heavens, by abraham.' Thus the telling of
the creation story alludes to abraham, 'in that day the Lord God made the earth and the heavens.' Thus Abraham is somehow representative of creation
being actualized. It's important to note that on the tree of life Abraham represents Chesed, which is the first sephirah beneath the abyss.
Genesis begins 'beresheet bara elohim eth...' 'In the beginning God created...' Look closely at the first 4 words. The first 2 words start with bet,
the 2nd letter of the hebrew alphabet. The second 2 words start with aleph, the 1st letter. This was alluded to as being a significant mystery in an
earlier section, where there was a long drawn out dialogue between the letters and God, one by one in reverse order, about which letter would be
honored with being the opening letter of the Torah. In the end Bet was chosen, and Aleph accepted it and was made special and significant in its own
way. So, aleph and bet were switched at the opening of torah, which is also the story of creation. The second word used to open genesis, bara, means
created. If you put aleph in front of of bet in bara, restoring the original order of the alephbet, you get abra, which is the beginning of Abraham's
name. Keep in mind yud and heh sort of represent the ultimate polarity, which could be labeled masculine/feminine. So heh was added to abra, becoming
abrah. A yud was then added to elleh, becoming elohi. Then mem, the remaining letter of Mi who is the creator, is added to both of them, and you get
abraham and elohim. Another interpretation for all of this, goes back to the original dual-names for the transcendental. Mi and Mah. Mi was added to
elleh, forming elohim(elleh is aleph-lemed-heh, elohim is aleph-lamed-heh-yud-mem). Mah was added to abra, thus abraham(abra, which is arrived at by
putting aleph at the front of bara, is aleph-bet-resh. Abraham is aleph-bet-resh-heh-mem). Notice they both reverse the letters in their utilization
of mi and mah.
edit on 20-1-2015 by TheJourney because: (no reason given)