Voyen Koreis





INTRODUCTION


1. WHAT IS KABBALAH?

2. OTHER PATHS TO KNOWLEDGE

3. PYTHAGORAS

4. THE TAROT

5. ADAM KADMON

6. ACT OF CREATION

7. THE TREE OF LIFE

8. THE FOUR WORLDS

9. HOD & NETZAH

 10. LIFE IS EVERYWHERE

11. LIFE AND DEATH

12. REINCARNATION

13. PSYCHOLOGY

14. THE VITAL PRINCIPLE

15. SYNCHRONICITY

16. TZIM-TZUM

17. BODIES OF MAN

18. HUMAN MIND

19. LILITH

20. KNOWLEDGE

21. OF ANGELS AND MEN

22. CREATION IN  GENESIS 2

23. THE LETTER YOD

24. TWENTY-TWO LETTERS

25. THE NAME OF GOD

26. THE ZOHAR

27. ABRAHAM AND SARAH

28. THE HEBREW LANGUAGE

29. THE PATRIARCHS

30. MALKHUT - THE LAST SEPHIRA

31 THE MYSTICAL KABBALAH

32. BETH – THE FIRST LETTER





11. LIFE AND DEATH




INTRODUCTION


1. WHAT IS KABBALAH?

2. OTHER PATHS TO KNOWLEDGE

3. PYTHAGORAS

4. THE TAROT

5. ADAM KADMON

6. ACT OF CREATION

7. THE TREE OF LIFE

8. THE FOUR WORLDS

9. HOD & NETZAH

 10. LIFE IS EVERYWHERE

11. LIFE AND DEATH

12. REINCARNATION

13. PSYCHOLOGY

14. THE VITAL PRINCIPLE

15. SYNCHRONICITY

16. TZIM-TZUM

17. BODIES OF MAN

18. HUMAN MIND

19. LILITH

20. KNOWLEDGE

21. OF ANGELS AND MEN

22. CREATION IN  GENESIS 2

23. THE LETTER YOD

24. TWENTY-TWO LETTERS

25. THE NAME OF GOD

26. THE ZOHAR

27. ABRAHAM AND SARAH

28. THE HEBREW LANGUAGE

29. THE PATRIARCHS

30. MALKHUT - THE LAST SEPHIRA

31 THE MYSTICAL KABBALAH

32. BETH – THE FIRST LETTER












Meetings With Remarkable People   Mephisto & Pheles    Intrusion   The Kabbalah  
 The Čapek Brothers    Struggle of the Magicians    
The Fools' Pilgrimage  Contact 




11. LIFE AND DEATH

 

THE LIFE WAVE

 

We know already that the Creator could only manifest himself by dividing the original state of unity. When we have the rule of undistinguishable unity, we cannot identify any qualities. Without light and darkness, we cannot have day and night. Unless there is a will to do something, to express oneself, everything would forever remain the same. If the Creator wants to make himself visible, he has to meet some resistance. If there is no resistance, he has to create it. This is why, at a certain point, he creates the principle of contrast, which will oppose him. Thus a polarity is introduced, at the very beginning of the journey that the spirit descending into the matter will follow. This is the moment when Multiplicity begins to wake up within the Unity. This is when the Time comes into being, together with the sounding of the first “Yes” and “No”, the positive and negative. All the individual things that came into being in the Cosmos after the break-up of the unity have carried within them a portion of the vitality from the first source. The process of manifestation, of differentiation, involves a progressive loss of Divinity.

During this process, an infinite variety of living and active beings come to exist, each one a separate and distinct compound of energy of different grades and levels, the whole forming the special ‘staircase’ of living creatures. Each is a conglomeration of life, of energy, of thought and needs, each living and spiritual in its essential nature. All of these creatures are seeking the fulfilment of their own reason for existence, all forming one great community living in cacophony and kaleidoscope of organised disorder. The polarity and the resultant diversity that is now possible, rules all the kingdoms of the Universe. The opposite contradictions and contrasts are ever present in every being, including ourselves, ever fighting for prominence: Love – Hatred, Bitter – Sweet, Heat – Cold, Courage – Fear, etc.

The one thing that we need to understand about polarity is that there are a certain relations between the two opposite poles, and that they are, to a degree, interchangeable. It is like what we see with the model of the DNA structure (above left), where one side of the intertwining spirals turns to the other side and back again. Naturally, one thing cannot change into an entirely different thing, but it can under favourable circumstances slide along to become its opposite or something close to it.  Fear, for instance, can be transmuted into Courage, but cannot become Love or Hatred, or suddenly acquire the quality of sweetness, bitterness or sourness. The difference between, for instance, Heat and Cold, as any physicist would tell you, is all a matter of vibrations. Cold therefore can become Heat, simply by increasing its vibrations. It is a little more difficult however for us to understand what it is that makes it possible for Hate to turn into Love and vice-versa, though not one author of romantic novels has done very nicely financially from exploring this little enigma. Another phenomenon that we might encounter, and that many people find puzzling, is the similarity of psychological and character traits found at the opposite ends of the spectrum of political parties. Members of the parliament at the far left and the far right, for instance, might violently disagree with each other publicly, though if one has the chance to question them separately, one might well find out that have very similar views on some issues. They might both turn out to have racial prejudices, sexist views, etc. We just have to accept that there are various mental and emotional states, that they all belong to certain classes and subclasses, that all have their opposite poles, and that a transmutation between these poles is always a possibility. Perhaps if we understood these mysteries, life might not be quite so interesting.

There is a real harmony and consonance of Nature in the whole Universe, the Macrocosm (the Divine world) and the Microcosm (the world of man). Everything moves in circles and cycles. All things originate from the Macrocosm, they flow, and eventually they return to the One, to the Creator. Thus the Earth is a mirror reflection of Heaven, Heaven and Earth are co-existent. To those who are sensitive enough, the heavenly bodies sing. Some great philosophers have said this, for instance Plato, and particularly Pythagoras, who has based his whole philosophical system on his concept of the ‘music of the spheres’.

The ancient Sumerian astrologers, some 5000 years ago, already knew that the celestial bodies are animated and that they exert influence on us. Everything around us, including our Earth as celestial body, is alive. The initiates of this world know this, though official science would pour scorn on such a statement. Modern science draws the line between the organic things and inorganic things, between the animate and the inanimate, without even being able to define what the former is, or what death is, which marks the moment when things slide from one state of being into another state of existence. 

WHAT IS DEATH?

We might want to put such question to a scientist, because in this age scientists generally count as the most knowledgeable members of our society. However, there is hardly such a creature as a “Scientist” to be found, at least not in this day and age. Science has lost its quality of wholeness, and during the past three or four centuries it has been gradually divided into many smaller sections, with each such section becoming a domain of a group of specialists. Thus we would most likely be referred to a specialist, in this case probably a biologist.

“What is death?” we ask the biologist.

“Death is the absence of life,” he or she would most likely answer. Or something along these lines.

“Yes, that’s obvious,” we would persist. “But how would you define life?

“Hmm… well… Life has not yet been scientifically defined, you see?                                                                                 We’re still working on it.”

“OK, couldn’t we perhaps reverse the question?” we continue pestering our imaginary biologist. “Is life the absence of death?”

“Well, that sounds logical, doesn’t it?” he or she would answer. “Only, I wish it were this simple. But it isn’t.”

“Why do you say that?”

“You see, death is a built-in part of the whole cycle of life. It seems that everything that lives has to die, sooner or later. The individual cells that form our body also are constantly dying, so that new ones can replace them. This is how our body grows; this is how it repairs itself when it’s been damaged. And, of course, we have to die too, so that our descendants can replace us. Because if that wasn’t so we would be soon forced to stand on each other’s heads. How long do you think before this would happen?”

“Probably not very long,” we would hazard a guess.

“Well, A couple of centuries, maybe. But we are Homo sapiens, the thinking beings, so maybe we could make some adjustments, like more efficient anti-conception devices, or even abstention from sex. Other creatures that share this planet with us couldn’t do this, so they would most likely go on reproducing themselves, even if the old members of their kind would not die. Do you know what that would mean?”

“That would have to be a bad news for us. Especially in case of the carnivorous beasts. Oh, just realised – they wouldn’t be able to maul us to death!”

“Well, in that case we would be able to live alongside the tigers or lions for quite some time, without any of us falling pray to them, perhaps even a whole century. But imagine that only people and rats have stayed alive. Within a decade only one or the other would be left, and no prices for guessing which one it would be. Still, if the common flies were also to share the space with people and the rats, we wouldn’t need to worry much about being eaten by the rodents.

The flies would have suffocated us long before the rats or mice could get to us. We’d all be gone within three or four years. But that’s still nothing compared to the havoc created by some one-cell organisms. If the ordinary bacteria were not dying at all, we would not be able to recognise each other, or indeed our whole world, within a day or two. I’m afraid that clouds of fantastically colourful bacteria, which would nevertheless give out a horrible smell, would hover around and soon cover us all and everything else!”

The biologist has finished this little lecture to us, and went away to the laboratory, perhaps to kill a rat or two for scientific purposes. We are left wondering if it would not be better after all if things remained as they are, and if death stayed part of the life cycle on this planet. Regardless of what the biologist might think, together with the ancient philosophers, the medieval alchemists and hermetists, and with the Kabbalists, ancient, medieval or modern, we will continue to believe that everything around is animated, be it the stones, the metals, or the wood, that they have a life and that they have a soul, and that correspondences between everything in the world with one thing influencing the other, pervade every field. Also that everything that surrounds us is subject to moving in cycles, some of which we might be able to recognise and acknowledge, others not, because they are too long or too short for our perception.

Let’s look now at death from a different angle. In my book The Fools’ Journey, inspired by the Tarot cards, the two protagonists are being initiated while making a journey through the Tarot arcana. One of them finds himself in the presence of Death. Here is a part of their conversation:

 

- As you no doubt realise, I operate from the timeless zone and can therefore observe the past and the future. The medical sciences are poised to make great advances. Like everything else, it will have its positive and its negative aspects.

- Tell me about the positive ones, please.

- People will live longer.

- Is that all?

- Isn't that what they always dreamed about? It's the quality of lives of some of them that worries me the most. If their bodies and their brains could retain a reasonable level of productiveness, that's fine with me, and I might even close both my eyes to let them enjoy themselves in this world a little longer. But how would you like to go on living for years, just lying on a hospital bed surrounded by various instruments, unable to move or do anything, being artificially fed through some tubes attached to your veins, and having iron lungs doing your breathing for you?

- That's horrible! Is that what's going to happen?

- That's not all. Various organs will be taken from the not quite dead bodies of some people and grafted to the bodies of others.

- Couldn't you prevent it from happening?

- I'll keep trying, but all I would be able to do is cause the bodies to reject the foreign organs and, of course, in their stealthy ways the medicos will find out that this can be counteracted with some drugs and, sadly, for a time at least, I'll be cheated out of the game.

- Where will the supply of organs come from?

- That's going to be the main problem that will eventually cause the practice to halt. At first, it’s going to gain a popular support, because people are easily taken in by anything new and promising, particularly when it appeals to their emotions. But there will always be more potential receivers of organs then available donors, and the shortage of suitable organs in due course will attract various criminals and black marketers, who will stop at nothing to get what they want. The rest you can easily imagine yourself.

- When people realise that their lives might be in danger, they will turn against it.

- It will do some good, too. It will make some people think more about their lives and come to understand the eternal truth, which states that truly alive is only the person who is willing to die while still full of life. And that while their appointment with you can be postponed, it cannot be cancelled altogether.

- Do you often talk to people, the way you did to that man and the way you talk to me now?

- I cherish every opportunity to have a nice talk, so I'm always available for a little gossip, unfortunately most of the time I’m not perceived by people. Mind you, my presence does not always herald a person’s passing to the other side, in fact most of the time this is not the case at all, so there usually is no need for any panic on their part. I’m around when it’s time for a person to change the course of their life. I assist these changes and I help him or her to bury the part of their old personality that is destined to die.

- You amaze me. But what you say really does make sense.

- Of course it does. During your life’s journey you encounter many death experiences, some of them quite drastic, others less so. You must realise that in a certain sense you die every night. Your sleep is only a mild form of death, and when in the morning you wake up it is like being reborn.  

- I think that I'm beginning to understand you. You have a controlling power over all parts of our bodies and over every cell that forms it. They die and new ones are replacing them. A similar process goes on in our minds. The old ideas die and new ideas take their place. We never have quite the same physical body that we had yesterday, and we are also constantly revising our ideas and building new systems of thinking, which are based on our latest experiences.

- You do understand, indeed. I only have to add, that the two of us are really associates. At first you were more like a silent partner to me, but your recent trials have speeded everything up. Your old personality is about to surrender to the new one, and our meeting here today will further enhance the process of your initiation.

- Have you arranged this meeting or has it happened naturally?

- You did not exactly call me, did you? It happens to be one of the more pleasant tasks called for in the course of my official duties, to initiate those, who have warranted it, into the mysteries of Death.

- Thank you very much.

- Not at all. It was a real pleasure meeting you. I want you to walk away from this little tête-à-tête with the understanding that the two of us have now become partners and companions. But now, you'll have to excuse me, because I really must go!

 

TO: 12. REINCARNATION


Meetings With Remarkable People   Mephisto & Pheles    Intrusion   The Kabbalah  
 The Čapek Brothers    Struggle of the Magicians    
The Fools' Pilgrimage  Contact 



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