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










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











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 

14. THE VITAL PRINCIPLE


THE ARCHETYPES & THE TAROT

        Another principle to be learned from this aspect of the Kabbalah is that there is no such thing in this world that does not have its roots in the mind of the Creator. When the Creator created the world, he created certain principles; Carl Gustav Jung was the first 20th century psychologist who has recognised them, and named them as archetypes.

Pivotal to Jungian psychology is the term Collective Unconscious. Freud was the first psychologist who determined that in the human mind an unconscious part exists, not unlike a subterranean labyrinth, where personal thoughts and desires, perhaps suppressed at an early age, are being held. These are continuously trying to gain our conscious attention through our dreams, through mistakes that they cause us to make, through various symptoms of mental or even physical diseases, etc. Jung accepted this premise and further developed the idea. To the concept of personal unconscious, essentially as described by Freud, he added the notion of collective unconscious, which also includes the memories and experiences of our ancestors, as well as synchronistic events, such as I have already described. Collective unconscious is like an invisible net, and can thus be compared to the Internet, which connects the individuals from many nations and potentially the entire human race. We could take this analogy farther, and say that archetypes might play a role similar to that the Internet servers do in our modern times.

History is littered with acts of fervent believers in various orthodoxies, who saw no other way of protecting their interests but destroying anything that looked remotely threatening. Thus millions of books had ended their existence in flames, and such fate would have without a doubt awaited the Tarots, had their unknown but immensely wise creators decided to put their wisdom in written form into a book. Their acumen instead led them to design a pictorial book, in accordance with the Chinese proverb: “One picture is worth a thousand words”. Pictures in hands of the nomadic Gypsies or the gambling patrons of medieval taverns, were always going to be overlooked in such purges, and the cards were thus saved for the generations to come of those “who have the eyes to see and the ears to hear”.

I see the Tarot trumps as milestones, which were set to mark the paths of the future initiates. Carl Jung was also the first of the modern psychologists who seriously studied the esoteric subjects; Alchemy, Hermetism, the Kabbalah, etc., and the Tarots naturally had not escaped his attention. He described the Tarot trumps as archetypes. Our body is ruled by instincts, which unknowingly make it react to the outside influences, and the archetypes have a similar role within the realm of the human spirit. Culture and traditions of various nations or social groups may differ to a large degree, whereas archetypes always retain their particular character. In dreams, in myths, in fairy tales or songs of peoples of all historical epochs and cultural environments, essentially the same archetypal figures will always be appearing: the Mother, the Father, the Child, the Hero, the Magician, the Tempter, the Trickster, the Wise Man/Woman, the Fool, etc. There are also archetypal situations and concepts, such as love, birth, death, success, misfortune, justice, self-sacrifice, hope, indecision, pleasure, etc. Archetypes in various guises can thus be found in the twenty-two Tarot trumps. Above them all stands the Fool. The Tarot Fool is the archetype of an eternal pilgrim, who threads his way through the labyrinth of the world.

Perhaps the best course of study to take by anyone who wants to understand the archetypes is getting oneself a pack of Tarot cards together with a good book (An introduction to the Study of the Tarot by Paul Foster Case is highly recommended here), and have a good look at the 22 trumps of the Major Arcana. I would not recommend however delving in the fortune telling side of them. The Tarot cards (and the archetypes) sometimes have very strange ways of making themselves embedded in our minds, as you may remember from the description early in this book of my first encounter with the Hanged Man, and of this card’s weird and wonderful influence on me that lasted for so many years.

The card titled Strength (right) is another example. A lion, this certainly fits the title, but who would immediately associate the concept with a woman? We must understand that in reality every idea that comes into the mind of man is an archetype, though when we are born we forget all about this original state of universal harmony, in which man was at the beginning of Creation. It is only our conscious mind that forgets about this state of unity, while our soul, our bones, our flesh, and even every one of the cells of our body, remembers it. Whenever we have an idea, this idea carries with it all the potentialities for expression.

There does not exist one single idea that would not have this potentiality, because all the ideas in this world are pristine ideas that have already been in the mind of the Creator when he created the world. In the same way as a seed carries within itself the potential of becoming a flower, a fruit, or a fully-grown tree, an idea in our mind has the potential of being similarly fulfilled. All depends on us; however; we must have the desire to bring the idea into fruition. We should therefore never assume that desire is a negative thing. Desire is positive; it works in a similar way as does the law of gravity, which makes things fall towards the earth. The fulfillment of our ideas is made possible by the pull of our desires.

As always, there are conditions. The obvious ones are: who is going to profit from this? Is it meant to enhance someone’s ego, while not serving any real purpose at all? Is it going to stand empty and never be used, like some of the gigantic buildings and monuments built by the totalitarian regimes of Hitler, Stalin and the like? If people have the purity of desire, if what they want so badly is meant to be used for constructive purposes, if it is meant to be shared with others to be of benefit to mankind rather then for a selfish reason, then it may be brought to fruition. Provided that the originators have the consistency and persistence to overcome obstacles that inevitably would come their way. It must also be born in mind that there are forces that are hostile to mankind and that they are going to attack any project that would be of its benefit; they might manifest in the shape of obstinate neighbours, city council bureaucrats, politicians, almost anyone and anything imaginable. Still, we must bear in mind that there is the necessary resistance, the ever-present Tzim-Tzum; this opposition originates from the world of Kelifot, the opposite of the world of the Sephiroth, the negative world of the Shells, which forever provides the restriction.

 

THE VITAL PRINCIPLE

 

There are two worlds, the spiritual world above, and the material, physical world below. The intermediary and the link between these two worlds is man, who stands between them and eventually straddles these two worlds. According to the Kabbalists, this link is in our very blood.

A Renaissance picture of the Tree of Life (left) resembles the heart with the blood vessels; it is unlikely though that the artist would have known much about the human anatomy and blood circulation system. The Hebrew word Nefesh, which is traditionally translated as “living soul” but can also be understood as “living creature,” is the same word used for all breathing creatures. It is the vital principle comparable to prana of the Hindus and Buddhists, or qi of the Taoists. The Kabbalah states that Nefesh is of the lowest spiritual level and that it is present in our blood. This is the main reason why the Jews are not allowed to eat any meat that still contains blood, which is why the meat that is “kosher,” or suitable to consumption is so prepared that all the blood has been drained as much as possible.

        Some esoteric groups maintain that the cells still contain the spirit and this may be so, however the degree of spirituality is very low, highly diluted. There is spirit in everything, even a grain of sand contains the part of God, and this is the immanence of God who is present in everything that he has created. When we talk about the blood, we talk about a much higher degree of spirituality then one contained in a grain of sand, a cell of a plant or even an animal. It is a different spirit, it is animated spirituality, it is the spirit that makes things alive, moving, breathing, and thinking.

 

        THE POWER OF SPOKEN WORD

        As I have said at the beginning of this book, the word Kabbalah implies knowledge, being both passed on and received. Whenever knowledge is imparted to someone, it is done in an edited form, so that the one who is receiving would be able to understand it. In other words, the person who passes the knowledge may have to lower the standard of that knowledge to be able to reach the mind of the person who receives it, if that person has not reached a high enough level of understanding. Also, the person who passes the knowledge does so with certain freshness. One can never achieve this in a book — that will inevitably become at least to some degree calcified, it would lose some of its freshness. When, for instance, you attend a lecture, along with the words you hear there is also the voice of the lecturer, his or her facial impression, in addition there is the setting and, above all, present is a certain mystical accompaniment that goes with the words; all this and much more plays its part.

        Some lectures may be a great deal more then simple words; they might be part of an initiatory process. This is the case with many people who place themselves into the position of giving lectures to the public. On a lecture given in the Czech Republic in the early 1990’s, there were some people present who were still much under the influence of the decades long predominance of Marxist ideology, which they are only slowly able to shake off. As a consequence they are not atheists any more, nor agnostics, but they cannot be classified (if such thing is possible) as being believers either. One such person, an anthropologist, afterwards said to the lecturer that during the whole night he could feel a certain optimism and positivism in these teachings, and how much he appreciated the expressed optimism and hopefulness about life and about the future of the world. If such a person came more often to similar lectures and if he let himself be receptive, if he became a vessel for receiving the knowledge, he too would become more positive, would have more belief, hope and faith to become a stronger and more successful person in the Odyssey of Life. When Vladimir Ilyich Ulyianov-Lenin left that flat at Spiegelgasse 17 in Zürich, on his mission leading to the “victory of the working classes” in Russia, a pattern was set that profoundly affected several generations of people in many countries, which came under the rule of the Communist regime in the Soviet Union.  The legacy will be here for some time yet.


 

        Life is no picnic, we do not come here only to enjoy ourselves, we come here to learn and whilst we are learning we experience the full thrust of existence. We all come here with some particular mission to be accomplished; some people’s assignments are relatively simple and undemanding, while others’ are complex and arduous, full of heavy responsibilities. The course of a life can be compared to a train journey. Some of us have a ticket that will take us through the entire trip of the train, through all the stations, all the stops. It allows us to observe the vicissitude of life, hear all the noises, see people getting out or on the train, witness their joyful meetings and tearful partings, watch some people rushing on or off, some lounging around the station, others perhaps even being arrested, see a cargo of chickens being loaded at one station and a herd of sheep unloaded at the next and so on . . . Others’ tickets are only valid for a very short and uneventful trip and it is preordained that they should get off the train at the next station. However, having a one-way ticket for a short ride does not necessarily mean that we have to get off the train at that point. There are also synchronistic events, and the ever-present element of free will, which might make us decide to suddenly change our destination. Here is a place for the story of romance, which was narrated by my mother (more than once), and which I will now try to retell.

It all happened in the 1930’s. A tallish, bespectacled man, with slightly curly soft brown hair, came into the compartment on the train going from Prague to the Adriatic coast, about halfway in the journey, somewhere between Bratislava and Budapest.  My mother, then thirty-two and as yet unmarried, occupied the coupé together with a young lady of her acquaintance, who was to be her travelling companion on the holiday package to Split. The friend had tactfully withdrawn and moved to another compartment when the train was about to cross the border between Hungary and Yugoslavia, as by then it had become obvious that the charming stranger was only interested in chatting up my future mother. From what she had told me later, still starry-eyed of sorts, his manners must have been impeccable, his intelligence dazzling, his knowledge most impressive, and his Czech very refined. Not only that. When a Hungarian conductor came into the compartment to ask about their tickets he spoke to him in Hungarian, when later the express train stopped at some stations to be besieged by the peddlers selling drinks, sausages and various other goods, he gallantly bought refreshments for both of them, while conversing with the vendors in Serbian or in Croatian. His original destination was Dubrovnik, but this had proved flexible. Instead of changing trains in Zagreb, as he should have done, he stayed on and continued the journey to Split with my mother.

A year or so later the two were married — the marriage incidentally took place in Tirana, Albania, where my father was by then on the diplomatic staff. The Albanian king was getting married on the same day, so my parents even had their big day with the twenty-one-gunshot salute.

I find it almost frightening just thinking about all this. Without this decision, obviously made on the spur of the moment, my parents would almost certainly not have married; their respective lives would have taken different courses. And, of course, I would not be here to tell you about it.

We all get chances to make such sudden decisions, which could sometimes change our entire life, at some points during our respective train journeys. It might be that we suddenly know that we want to stay on the train, regardless of whether we have a valid ticket or money to pay for it, and even if several attempts are made to throw us off the train we may determinably keep coming back and grimly hang on to continue the ride. Someone around then might perhaps be so impressed by our resolution and stubbornness that he would pay for a new ticket for us. Or, less dramatically, we simply seek out the Hungarian conductor and pay for it ourselves. Which is what apparently my father had done.

 

FREE WILL

A question inevitably arises: what is free will and how much of it do we have? The answer is that it is both unlimited and limited. In theory it is indeed without a limit, but in practice we are always limited at least to some degree. At first the limits are set by our horizons, which determine also our ambitions. Let’s tell ourselves another little story, this time an invented one though not terribly original:

A hundred years or so ago, a child was born into a working family of coalminers, the fifth generation, living somewhere in Wales. Or Serbia. Who knows? From the moment it begins to notice things around itself, the child is severely limited in what it would see. A pretty looking green valley, spoiled by some mining towers, a village or small town full of people much like its own parents — the hard-working fathers, the care-laden mother, brothers, sisters and other children that go to school with it, all having a similar background. There is nothing much to look up to. The owners of the mine are the town’s aristocracy; sometimes the child might glimpse them riding by in their horse carriage, perhaps even an early motorcar. The village or town in the next valley where the family visits some relatives occasionally looks very much the same. There is little to stimulate the child, little to aspire to. Unless that child was born with some special mission in life, it will almost certainly follow in the footsteps of it father or mother, and live a quiet, uneventful life. It would more or less forfeit the free will that the Fate has given it, or use it only on making the decisions that affect it personally or the people in a small circle around it, such as in choosing its future spouse, etc.

But since we have began this story that reeds like an early 20th century novel with a strong social dimension, let’s assume that our child is an exceptionally spiritually advanced soul, very intelligent and with high moral standards. It will use its free will in making the decision to move to Cardiff (or Belgrade) as soon as it leaves the school, against its family’s will, naturally, and gains some higher education. Eventually this young person moves to London, where he or she becomes a great scientist or heart surgeon, take your pick, making fantastic inventions or saving many lives.

Spiritual people can have their free will simply because they seek it, and they exercise it. They might come to this world preordained to lead a significant life that is going to leave some mark on the world and perhaps also influence many other peoples’ lives. Theirs is an advanced soul that comes to the world of Malkhut from a high source, and although they may not initially be aware of the nature of the task that awaits them in life, they often develop all types of gifts that are going to be the tools to help them in their mission.

Of course that having the free choice may also mean that they disregard all this and decide to do nothing, just marking time throughout their life. They may change the course of it and, taking up once again the analogy of a train journey, they get out at the nearest station, take a rest and go on a sightseeing tour or wait for the next railway junction and board an express train going in a different direction. Our highly successful heart surgeon might for instance decide at some point that life in London is too stressful, and that becoming a general practitioner in his hometown and marrying his high-school sweetheart is what he really wants to do.

There were people who had lead very important lives, but if they had stayed around longer they might have done some things that would have endangered the advantages they had made for themselves and for others. For instance, if Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart had lived beyond his thirty-five years, isn’t it possible that the compositions he would have written after that fatal year of 1791 would have become less fresh, more repetitive, not so appealing? Perhaps even to the point where he would have grown tired of composing, spend the next forty years just drinking wine and playing billiards, and die at seventy-five, an alcoholic and a totally forgotten man?

In such situations people might have to be removed before they could do any damage to their reputation, to other people, to the course of history. Out of a blue there comes a sudden death, they might fall to the bullet of an assassin, die in a car accident, drown in a lake or succumb to influenza. This is deus ex machina, the Divine mechanism, which is also sometimes at work to protect us and to save us from the very same type of accidents, if our time is not up yet and if we are meant to survive.

TO: 15. SYNCHRONICITY



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



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