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selections from "On The Mystical Shape of the Godhead" by Gershom Scholem - The Yoke

About selections from "On The Mystical Shape of the Godhead" by Gershom Scholem

selections from "On The Mystical Shape of the Godhead" by Gershom Scholem Mar. 27th, 2005 @ 08:28 pm Next Entry
"A multitude of worlds are attached to each and every Sefirah, filled with its potencies, that break out of the divine realm and realize the particular essence of that Sefirah in descending degrees...

..the fire of wrath burning in God...is a holy quality within the divine totality. So long as it operates within the union of all the Sefiroth it is not evil, although it is the source of evil (as Boehme put it, the Urqual, the primal source of evil.)

The fire of divine severity melts and refines the power of judgment, known as the sacred gold; however, the dross is externalized becoming the "shells" (kelippoth) in which the holy is either nonexistent, or present only as a spark, concealed and glowing within the dross. In the language of the Zohar, this is the Sitra Ahra, the "Other Side," which is the opposite of the holy and schemes to seize it and draw it over to its own side. The Other Side is the fire of divine severity, externalized and made independent, where it becomes an entire hierarchial system, a counterworld ruled by Satan.

Once removed from its joint root with the Tree of Life, the Tree of Knowledge itself becomes a "Tree of Death".

..a spark of the divine light shines even in evil...One theory states that independent of human conduct, such a spark from the primoridal light fell into the so-called "Emanation of the Left Hand"--the system of the Stra Ahra and is still glowing within the slag of evil. It could be argued that this spark was drawn there during the eruption of that emanation, and is now held captive, so to speak, awaiting its redemption to be returned home. This was the theory of Lurianic Kabbalah: upon the "Breaking of the Vessels" that great drama in the Sefirotic world that constituted the turning point in the theosophic proccess. ...Along with the shards of these shattered vessels, from which the "shells" or kelippoth were thereafter formed, a few sparks of the inner light from the world of Adam Kadmon likewise broke away and descended. It is these sparks (nitsotsoth) that now shine even in those spheres over which evil gains control. Their activity is strangely ambivalent: on the one hand, these sparks animate evil, guaranteeing its existence and its power of action; on the other, they are like captives, awaiting their own redemption from evil. The Kabbalists disagreed as to whether the removal of these sparks would destroy the sphere of evil, by depriving it of its vitality, or whether it would redeem evil as well, transforming it and returning it to the reconstituted harmony of things.

In Kabbalistic theory, this proximity and interlacing of good and evil finds its classical expression in the notion of a sphere in which these two emanations are blended, and which has special significance as the source of souls--namely, kelippath nogah, the "brilliant shell." This conception originated in a mystical reading of Ezekiel's vision of the Merkavah, in which the prophet saw "a stormy wind come out of the north, a great cloud, with a fire flashing up, so that a brightness was round about it: and out of the midst therof as the color of electrum, out of the midst of the fire" (1:4). This world of kelippath nogah is actually a Luciferian world, belonging to the domain of shells and hence of evil, but is penetrated by a brilliance from the world of the Sefiroth that shines within it, so that the realms of good and evil appear uncannily blended. The souls that originate in this realm bear the stigma of this unresolved essential conflict. According to Lurianic Kabbalah, man's natural soul, with all its powers, derives from this source of kelippath nogah, and hence enjoys the possibility of choice between good and evil that is the lot of every human being, even without the influence of the divine soul within him stemming from the light of the Sefiroth. The doctrine of kelippath nogah is the classical form in which the Zoharic doctrine, according to which the world of evil is independent of man, but rooted in the dialectics of emanation itself, became most widely known and influential.
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From:o_lucky_man
Date:March 28th, 2005 03:13 pm (UTC)
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Yeah, that's it. You were definitely right on with what you were saying--I'll loan it to you :D

I don't know why I posted it in this community, though--a little off-topic. Or maybe the kelippah nogah might have something to do with addiction or condition behavior? At least that'll be my excuse.
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From:o_lucky_man
Date:March 28th, 2005 04:57 pm (UTC)
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I think there's one other person who joined--maybe somebody from your friends list.

I'll send the book to you--I really got a lot out of it (I guess I read it 11 or 12 years ago, though!) I think some Thelemites believe Crowley invented Kabbalah or something! I mean, c'mon, people have to acquaint themselves with the actual source and the actual tradition, the Zohar and Isaac Luria and all the rest--which Crowley certainly did (although, like with yoga, he was idiosyncratic about what he chose to incorporate into Thelema).
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From:o_lucky_man
Date:March 31st, 2005 04:56 am (UTC)
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Oh, cool, I just noticed you added some interests! Thanks!
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From:oswaldcrowlius
Date:April 2nd, 2005 01:02 pm (UTC)
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Lol. yeah, me again. Sorry to disturb you in your "private club", lol. I found this community in looking from my interest list for "Julius Evola"...
The fact is that the discussion is very interesting, even if i'm not keen on Gershom Sholem (probably because the only books i've read of him where all written for the profane ;-} ; but it seems he wrote some others interesting stuff like this one). I was reading (trying?) Isaac de Luriah a few years ago, but i was probably too young to understand : i just remember me of stuff like the Keilim (the broken vessels, i think) and the Tikkoun concept ("reunify" the keilim). Could you advice me a good introduction to Lurianic Kabbalah ?

I dobt know if you have the same edition in USA, but in our preface to the Liber 777, in england, we have an interesting writing about Crowley's perception of the Sithra Ahara : i will try to quote the name of the editor for my next post.

I was lookin for a community were you will be both speakin of esoterism (i mean, your the only persons i've found on LJ which spiritual interest are near of mine), and it seems that i found it. If you feel i will poluate your discussions, just tell me i will simply watc, but otherwise, i will be glad to ask a few questions.
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From:o_lucky_man
Date:April 2nd, 2005 05:20 pm (UTC)
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To tell you the truth, the best book I know of about Lurianic Kabbalism--other than Luria himself--is this Scholem book quoted. On The Mystical Shape of the Godhead is the title.

My copy of 777 doesn't seem to have the essay you mention--sounds very interesting though.

And of course you're more than welcome to join this community, ask questions, and share your wisdom, with the understanding that it's primarily devoted to being magical and healthy and/or alcohol and/or drug free (or any variation thereof) and not being (hopefully) total wankers about it. You're a cool guy, though, and and very knowledgable, so I'm sure you'd have much to offer.

You may also be interested in anti_banish hippie_sex_cult both of which are wide-ranging and esoteric.
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