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To: alt.magick.tyagi
From: (mordred)
Subject: Re: BAPTISM / MIKVAH (Now, Kabbalah too)
Date: 13 Feb 1995 14:55:03 -0800

[from alt.magick: (Colin Low)]

Mark Kagy x3636 1E-331 (nq8230100) ( wrote:
: Since I am the one who originally asked about baptism, I want to
: personally thank Michael Dinowitz for sharing some of Aryeh Kaplan's
: writing with me.  I must get a hold of more of his books, especially
: those which are written about Kabbalah.  I have also thoroughly
: enjoyed reading Colin Low's Kabbalah notes, which I found to be the
: most understandable of the writings about Kabbalah I have read so
: far.  In fact, the notes answered many of the questions I had about
: the "nature" of Kabbalah, which were not adequately answered by the
: Kabbalah.FAQ.  I also want to thank everyone who has responded to 
: my Kabbalah posts recently; thanks for the good information.

I would caution you against using the treatment in the Notes as
a basis for interpreting all statements made by all kabbalists - the
treatment contains many modern elements. I have given up trying to
reconcile statements made by different Kabbalists, and I think it is
a good policy to attempt to understand the statements of any given author
within the context of their overall scheme, rather than attemping to
understand them in the context of what someone else has said.


: My basic problem, is to grasp the concept of what the Holy Spirit of
: God is.  I am referring to specifically those scriptures which 
: contain such words as "...when the Holy Spirit came apon them...they
: prophecied...".  This, I would think, corresponds to the Binah aspect
: of En Soph, but with the looseness of the use of the term "spirit"
: I am left somewhat confused.  Keep in mind that MY understanding of 
: Kabbalah is still in its infancy stage, so try not to be too harsh 
: with me. :)

: Sheesh!  These ideas are not easy to put into words!  I don't know 
: how well this is coming across.

Triiicky... The basic problem is the overloading of words, and the use
of the same or similar terms to describe different things. You will find,
for example, that the influx of the Shekhinah seems to correspond closely
to what Xtians appear to mean when they talk about "the Holy Ghost" or
the "Holy Spirit". I haven't attempted to read Kaplan's discussion (recently
posted) on the creation in Genesis in any detail, so I won't 
confuse the issue by adding a hasty interpretation of what I think he means.

: Another thing that bothers me is that, I believe, Malkuth is associated
: with Kether.  In my mind, I sort of see Kether as being the "point of 
: contact" of the En Soph(transcendent) with creation.  In other words,
: Kether seems to be the interface which allows the transcendent En Soph
: to be immanent in creation as the "Light".  This seems to me to 
: correspond better with Yesod, which has been described as the aether, 
: or infrastructure which allows emotions and urges(Netzach), and thoughts
: and concepts(Hod) to have physical presence in Malkuth(the physical
: world).  Therefore, I might be inclined to associate Malkuth with 
: En Soph, and Yesod with Kether, rather than the usual association of 
: Malkuth to Kether.  Can anyone add to my understanding here?(stupid
: question, huh?)

There is no right answer to this, but there are lots of useful
perspectives which do throw some light on the question.

From the point of view of our sense of individuality and identity,
Kether and Malkuth represent two extremes of "absolute otherness", and
so it is possible to entertain a dualistic perception of Kether and
Malkuth as "opposites". A change of consciousness in either direction
entails a "loss of self", but in a radically different way, consciousness
becoming "obsessed" by diversity in Malkuth, and unity in Kether. However,
it can also happen that Malkuth literally "becomes" Kether and vice-versa - 
the duality is an illusion of self-consciousness, and moving in the direction
of either reveals the other. I can offer no rational explanation of this, but
the following analogy might help: turbulence is a characteristic property
of flowing water, and a dualist might, by focussing on one or the other,
be able to see the water (Kether) or the turbulence (Malkuth) as
distinct. There is only flowing water, and nothing that is not flowing water.

There is a view that Kether is the crystallisation of the En-Soph, and
hence the Malkuth of the unmanifest.

There is the point of view that Malkuth is the realisation or
instantiation of Binah.

There is the point of view that Daath is the hole left when Malkuth

There is the point of view that Daath and Yesod are two sides of the
same coin.

Your question isn't stupid, other than the fact that it may be based
on an attempt to unite different (and not necessarily consistent)


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