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Kabbalah: The Universal Tree of Life

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Life is a beautiful, complex layering of laws and interdependent movements of matter and energy. Kabbalah is a systematic overview of how existence functions, on every level, from the microcosmic to the macrocosmic. Kabbalah is the basis of all religions, sciences, philosophies, and arts.

Gnosis reveals the living structures of existence, a beautiful and complex layering of laws and interdependent movements of matter and energy. Kabbalah is a systematic overview of how existence functions, on every level, from the microcosmic to the macrocosmic. Kabbalah is a science, a philosophy, an art, and a religion, but is universal, and applies to all religions, all sciences, all philosophies, and all arts. Kabbalah provides an understanding of how the human being fits into nature, and how nature functions, from the lowest, most dense levels, all the way up to the most profound. Through this knowledge, a person comes to know where they are now in the scale of the universe, and how to traverse those levels and reach a better station in life.

Kabbalah is a universal knowledge that has appeared in many forms around the world. Although we use the Hebrew word Kabbalah to describe it, this knowledge is not the property of the Jews or any other group. Kabbalah is also known by other names, such Kalachakra in Tibetan Buddhism. Modern science calls it "physics," but they have not yet discovered the full range of this knowledge. For that, they need to use other instruments that reach far beyond the reach of the physical senses.

The word Kabbalah comes from the Hebrew language and can be spelled Cabala or Qabala, since it is derived from the Hebrew קבלה, from קבל which means "to receive." (In the Gnostic tradition, the spelling with the "K" is preferred because the three arms of the letter represent the three primary forces, the trinity or trimurti). The root word is significant because real Kabbalah is not an invention or theory: it is the direct perception (reception) of the truth. When the truth is seen, there is no theory or belief needed. The truth simply is. Yet, the fundamental truth cannot be seen physically, because the fundamental truth is beyond the reach of the physical senses. Thus, the true investigator of Kabbalah knows how to perceive that which is beyond the physical senses.

The objective of studying the Kabbalah is to be skilled for work in the Internal Worlds... One who does not comprehend remains confused in the Internal Worlds. Kabbalah is the basis in order to understand the language of these worlds. - Samael Aun Weor, Tarot and Kabbalah

The Kabbalah is the foundation of every form of spiritual wisdom, although it is known by many other names. Every religion has a Kabbalistic basis, even though they may not use that word. Even science studies Kabbalah, yet without realizing it.

In the West, the Kabbalah utilizes a primary symbol called the Tree of Life, which illustrates the organizing principle found in every mystical tradition.

...the Tree of Life also in the midst of the Garden (of Eden)... - Genesis 2:9

The Tree of Life, as one of the two primary trees in the Garden of Eden, is one of the roots of all human understanding. To understand the Tree of Life is to understand the basic formula of existence.

The Tree of Life is the foundation of countless ancient cultures. It is Yggdrasil of the Nordics, the Tree of Life of the Aztecs and Mayans, and the Bodhi Tree of the Buddha.

tree-of-life

From left to right: the burning bush of Moses; the tree of the Greek Hesperides; an Egyptian tree of life; the Buddhist Nagarjuna drinking from the tree of life. 

Every great mystical tradition has a profound structure or cosmology. Every great cosmology corresponds to the Tree of Life.

The Qabalistic cosmology is the Christian Gnosis. Without it we have an incomplete system in our religion, and it is this incomplete system which has been the weakness of Christianity. - Dion Fortune, The Mystical Qabalah

The Kabbalah is also the science of numbers. The Kabbalah expresses the mathematics of all creation.

The Kabbalah is intimately related with the ancient and sacred Tarot. The twenty-two symbols of the Tarot contain the entirety of divine wisdom, and that wisdom is organized and explained in the Kabbalah.

On such a simple thing, scholars have written millions of volumes and theories that would turn anyone crazy who had the bad taste of becoming intellectualized with that entire arsenal. - Samael Aun Weor

The Kabbalah is a symbol which expresses the structure of creation. Understanding the Tree of Life, one can understand the structure of the universe around us and within us, for it maps the macrocosm and the microcosm and everything in between. However, this understanding cannot be derived solely from reading books and attending lectures.

There are two kinds of Kabbalists: intellectual Kabbalists and intuitive Kabbalists. The intellectual Kabbalists are black magicians. The intuitive Kabbalists are white magicians. - Samael Aun Weor

The intellect is a tool that is useful when placed under the service of the Spirit. But when the intellect seeks to control the Spirit, the intellect becomes destructive. Therefore, the intuitive Kabbalist is the one who learns through the experience of the consciousness. The intuitive Kabbalist learns directly, without opinions or theories. This one seeks a radical Intellectual Culture: a comprehensive knowledge of esotericism that is qualified by direct investigation.

In order to be a complete Kabbalist, one has to study; one has to record the teachings in the memory. - Samael Aun Weor, Tarot and Kabbalah

In synthesis, the intuitive Kabbalist studies the writings of the great masters, then investigates to find out for himself, and accepts what he directly experiences as true. Until then, the writings and opinions of others remain as opinions.

kabbalah the tree of lifeTo approach this level of comprehension, it is necessary to know how to utilize the consciousness through Self-observation and meditation. When the mind is stable and quiet, the Voice of the Spirit can be heard; it is the voice of the Intuition, and the revealer of all true knowledge.

The esotericist, when endeavoring to formulate his philosophy for communication to others, is confronted by the fact that his knowledge of the higher forms of existence is obtained by a process other than thought; and this process only commences when thought is left behind. - Dion Fortune, The Mystical Qabalah

Therefore the student of Gnosis is encouraged to understand the Kabbalah through intellectual study, but also to go further, and to meditate in order to comprehend the Kabbalah through intuition and direct experience. The one who retains the knowledge solely in the intellect fails to grow.

Kabbalistic studies must be combined with work on oneself. One must be conscious of these studies, for it they remain only in the intellect they will be lost when one dies. Yet, if one is conscious of them, the knowledge will manifest itself from childhood. - Samael Aun Weor

Similarly, the one who rejects the study of the Kabbalah also fails to grow, for he rejects the study of the steps of the Path.

We must walk the Path of the Middle: investigation with all of our cognitive abilities in psychological equilibrium.

Through the intellect: by studying the words of the Initiates.

Through the heart: by meditation.

Through our actions: by sexual transmutation.

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Quote of the Moment

"Manushyatva (human birth), Mumukshutva (keen yearning for liberation), Sat-sanga (company of sages), service of Guru, hearing of Srutis, reflection and constant, protracted and profound meditation are necessary for the attainment of salvation. Faith, dispassion, self-restraint, one-pointedness of mind, purity of heart, devotion, desire for liberation and meditation are the immediate factors of liberation for the aspirant. He who is endowed with these qualities attains immortality and knowledge. Absence of egoism, development of good qualities, cheerfulness, self-surrender, absence of passion and anger, keeping up a balanced mind at all times, facing honour and dishonour with same feeling, aversion to sensual objects, heat and cold are some of the signs of the person who is on the path of Realisation. These are not to be achieved in a day or two. It is the work of years of ceaseless and protracted Sadhana [spiritual practice]."

- Swami Sivananda

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