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By realizing our true purpose in life_ man attains perfection by dfhercbml

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									                 Kabbalah Revealed #5
     Introduction to the Four Phases of Direct Light
          Lecture presented for the American television channel, Shalom TV
                                   Anthony Kosinec
                                     July 4, 2006

             Bold and indented: Original text of Baal HaSulam
             lowercase italics: emphasized words
             Capitalized Italics: titles and transliteration from Hebrew

Hello again and welcome to Kabbalah Revealed. I’m Tony Kosinec.

Let’s begin by reading a quote from Baal HaSulam, from the Introduction to the
Talmud Eser Sefirot (The Study of the Ten Sefirot). He says:

     Therefore we must ask: why then, did the Kabbalists obligate each
     person to study the wisdom of Kabbalah? Indeed there is a great
     thing in it, worthy of being publicized: There is a wonderful,
     invaluable remedy to those who engage in the wisdom of Kabbalah.
     Although they do not understand what they are learning, through the
     yearning and the great desire to understand what they are learning,
     they awaken upon themselves the Lights that surround their souls.

     While one has not attained perfection, these Lights that are destined
     to reach him are considered Surrounding Lights. That means that
     they stand ready, and wait for one to purify one’s vessels of reception.
     At that time these Lights will cloth the able vessels.

     Hence, even when one does not have the vessels, when one engages in
     this wisdom, mentioning the names of the Lights and the vessels
     related to one’s soul, they immediately shine upon us to a certain
     measure. However, they shine for him without clothing the interior of
     his soul for lack of the able vessels to receive them. Despite that, the
     illumination one receives time after time during the engagement
     draws upon one grace from Above, imparting one with abundance of
     sanctity and purity, which bring one much closer to reaching
     perfection.

In this lesson we will look at the four phases of the creation of a creature. This is the
macro-template for everything that exists in creation: the way in which the creation
came into being; the way in which a creature is created; and the way in which
everything that stems from that is created in every aspect of the creation.

Here’s what the Kabbalists tell us. [Tony drawing] First of all we need to know that
there are secrets of Torah, but we are not going to speak of these secrets and they are
above our ability to convey them. No Kabbalistic book talks about the secrets of
Torah, only about the tastes of Torah.
These secrets are called His Essence, or Atzmuto. It’s forbidden to speak about this.
What forbidden means is that it is impossible. There are no words for this. We have
no Kelim (vessels) for it. This can only be known by attainment.

We start here [Tony draws the symbol for infinity]. We start with the Creator. The
Kabbalists tell us that the initial Thought of the Creator, those who have attained this
level, tell us that everything began with an intention, and this intention is to create a
creature and to bring pleasure to the creature. This is what’s called Behina Shoresh.
This is the root of all reality.

Now since this will to create a creature and to give that creature pleasure is the initial
thrust of the creation, immediately what occurred is that there was a will to receive
this pleasure. So this thought is now what we call “Light,” and this is a will to receive.
This is our vessel. This is the initial creature. This phase is one in which the total
Light of creation fills a vessel capable of holding the entire Light, but this vessel is
almost nullified against that, it’s so incorporated with it that really these things came
into existence at the same time and they depend on each other completely.

You have here a giving force, a desire to give, that presses into a reception and creates
this opposite desire, the desire to receive. These things are locked together. They are
sort of part and parcel of the same idea, but opposite. This is called the second
discernment, which is Behina Aleph. Aleph is the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet
and it has the value 1, and this is the first discernment.

What happens when the Light enters this first Kli, the will to receive, is that the will to
receive feels the pleasure, but the Light also imparts something about its own nature
into the Kli, and something happens as a result of feeling this.

When this Light goes all the way down and reaches the total filling within this will to
receive, the vessel begins to sense something about the nature of the Light itself.
Since this is only a will to receive, it makes a movement based on its programming,
and it notices that there is a Giver, so that the first discernment is “there is a Giver”; in
other words, this is the first thing that is not the Creator. It has the sensation that there
is a giving mode and there is a receiving mode. It’s in existence, in relation to
something.

Let’s look at this first and second part here in terms of Sefirot.

The first discernment is called “Keter” or “crown.” The second discernment is called
“Hochma.” Hochma means wisdom. So this Light that is felt by the first creature here,
this first phase of the creature, is a delight that is a response to the qualities of the
Creator, and this Light that it feels, that enters it, is called “the Light of Wisdom” (in
Hebrew, “Ohr Hochma”). So anytime you hear the word “wisdom” in Kabbalistic
texts, it’s talking about this quality of this Phase.

Now something happens here, and as a result of feeling that there is a Giver, it also
feels the pleasure of the desire to give, and it wants this pleasure because it is a will to
receive. So in this desire, a new discernment appears. In order to reach this—because
it felt this lack within it (first it was filled completely, then it felt a lack for what it
sensed in the quality of the Light)—in order to reach this, to try to attain this for itself,
it realizes that it doesn’t want to receive. What it wants is the pleasure of giving, so it
makes that move to be able to experience that pleasure of giving, but since it’s only
built to receive, the only thing that it can do is to not receive. In other words, it rejects
the Light. This phase is called “Behina Bet.” Bet is the second letter of the Hebrew
alphabet too, and the perception that it has is that to give is better than to receive. It is
a desire to give.

Now here we have a very interesting thing occurring. We have two phases that have
moved (Phase 1 moving to Phase 2), has moved to its complete opposite. Phase 1 is a
desire to receive and Phase 2 is a desire to give. This Sefira (Phase 2) is called “Bina.”
Bina comes from the word Hitbonenut which means “to observe.” And what it really
observes and what it discerns is a quality of the Creator, that the quality of the Creator
is to give. So this is the quality of giving, this Sefira Bina, this Behina Bet, this Phase
2.

In this state of emptiness there is another discernment that comes to the vessel. Now I
want you to notice that what is being spoken about in each one of these Behinot, in
each one of these discernments, is not about the action of the Light. The action of the
Light is always the same. It always only uses this primary law—the will to create a
creature and to fulfill that creature. That’s the only thing the Light does. What we are
speaking about are discernment changes within the Kli, within the desire, within the
creature. So here inside the Behina Bet, in the lack of Light, there is a discernment
that happens, that its nature is actually to receive, and that it can’t exist without the
Light of Wisdom.

This rejection of the Light, this passing back of the Light, is called “the Light of
Mercy” (in Hebrew, “Ohr Hassadim”), so it knows that it can’t exist like this, it must
receive. But it doesn’t want to be a receiver, so it has to find a way in which its
reception is actually a form of bestowal. And this brings about the next discernment.

This is Behina Gimel—the third letter of the Hebrew alphabet. This discernment here
brings about a dual phase. That is, this phase incorporates these two opposites, both
the reception of Ohr Hochma, and it also includes—Ohr Hochma and Ohr Hassadim.
So these two opposite desires are included here in this mixed phase. Why? What’s
going on here? In this mode of reception, Behina Gimel has found a way to turn its
reception into a way of giving.

The only thing that exists in creation is the creature and the Creator—the Light and
the vessel—that’s it. And even if the creature feels that it is doing an act of giving just
within itself, really, the only one that there is to give to from the point of view of the
creature is the Creator. Behina Gimel makes the decision that it will copy the act of
the Creator, that it understands that the Creator wants it to be filled with pleasure, that
it must receive this pleasure, and that part of the Thought of Creation is to create a
creature and to give to the creature. Well the only kind of creature that it can really
create is something within itself. So it makes the decision that it will receive a portion
of the Light, say 20% of the Light, under the condition that it only does it in order to
fulfill the Thought of Creation, this desire of the Creator to create a creature and fill it
with delight. So it will receive it with the intention that by its reception it fulfills this
Thought. And this is the only mode in which reception can be giving. But giving is an
intention. It doesn’t matter what the act is; it’s an intention. So this is really in
similarity of form with this Phase 0 (Keter) to a certain degree.

This 80% of Ohr Hassadim (Returning Light) it’s still pleasure, it’s still Light coming
into it, but she pays no attention to it here. This phase, in Sefirot is called Zeir Anpin,
and it really consists of a number of Sefirot: of Hesed, Gevura, Tifferet, Netzach, Hod,
and Yesod. It’s a mixed phase that allows for reception in order to bestow.

In this simulation of the act of bestowal that Behina Gimel does, a new discernment is
born. She feels here another quality of the Light because of her action and that quality
is actually the Thought of Creation itself. She comes to the attainment that it’s not just
to give, and it’s not just that she receives a certain portion in order to fulfill the desire
of the Creator to give to her, but that the Thought of Creation is to fill the creature
completely with unbounded delight and she then realizes that she must accept this
Light in order to fulfill the Thought of Creation. She must accept the whole Light.

So here, the Light enters and fills the entire vessel. This is Behina Dalet, 4, but this is
very different than Behina Aleph. Even though it looks the same, something very
different has occurred here because here, [Tony points to drawing] in Behina Shoresh,
Aleph, Bet, and Gimel, all of these actions were not independent actions. These were
all actions done by the Creator. The Force of the Light, the response and the desire
created in each one of these were actions done by the Creator. In Behina Dalet
something entirely new happens. This is an independent desire to be and do precisely
what the Creator had placed there. Here, in the intention to receive all of this Light,
there is the possibility of the equivalence of form with the very Thought of Creation
itself.

At this point, everything changes for the creature. There is a restriction, a change in
the nature of desire that happens here. Instead of receiving, as she did, Direct Light,
and trying to achieve this for herself, she feels here, because of this last discernment
that she had, she feels the stature of the Creator. And now, she no longer wants the
doing part of creation, the Direct Light, what she wants is the mind of the Creator, the
thinking part of the creation. She wants to reach equivalence of form with the Creator,
which is, in fact, the intention of the Creator in the first place. So here we have the
beginning of everything else in creation. We have an independent creature.

Hence, this fourth phase in Sefirot is called “Malchut.” Malchut comes from the word
“king” or “kingdom.” It means that everything is ruled here by desire. Now here, this
new intention not to receive for herself alone, because she feels the stature of the
Creator, she feels ashamed at the manner of reception, and this is called a
restriction—the First Tzimtzum—and from now on she pursues the Thought behind
creation, and not the actions of creation.

So here we have this Malchut, the beginning of creation. And this vessel, this number
four Behina, is called “Olam Ein Sof,” that is, “World Without End,” and all the
Worlds and souls extend from here.

Every part of creation uses exactly this form. This process, this macro-template, is
also the four-letter name of God. You have seen it. There is the tip of the Yod, Yod,
Key, the Vav, and the lower Hey—the HaVaYaH. When we see this name, it
represents these series of forces.

All names and words in Kabbalah are like formulas in physics. They talk about
relationships of Light to Kli. So, here you see that the Kabbalists have given us a map
from Above downward—how we came into being. But it’s not only that. It also
describes the states that a person must attain on their ascent upward. It gives us the
purpose, it gives us the root, and it gives us the places along the way. And that’s what
the creature does once it makes this restriction. It starts to build a system of worlds so
that it can attain the Thought of Creation, but as an independent desire, and become
equal to the Creator.

This is a quote from Rav Laitman:

“Man includes everything inside of him. If man does corrections, it means that
accordingly the entire creation approaches the Creator. Therefore, man has to
correct only himself. Man who elevates, brings up with him all of the worlds. That is
why it is said that all worlds were created for man.”

Join us again next time when we will learn about the primary tool of attainment—the
building of a screen, the sensor that allows us to feel the Thought of the Creator and to
attain equivalence of form with Him. See you then.

								
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