Kabbalah, Theosophy, etc...
Aug 04, 1997 04:39 PM
by Vincent Beall
"Jerry Schueler" wrote:
> Subject: Qabala vs Theosophy
> I respect your opinion. She was a lot more versed in Kabbalah
> than I am (I am reasonably versed in Qabala, but know very little
> of Kabbalah--I leave that to Alan).
It is doubtful that HPB was more knowledgeable about Kabbalah than
either you or Alan in my oppinion. As for myself I am slowly collecting
the traditional view of Kabbalah, and my take on the subject is
necessarily non traditional.
> I am uncertain what you mean by Hinduistic pantheism. I don't
> see much difference between the Cosmocrators or Manus of HPB
> and the Angels or Archangels of the Kabbalah.
That may well be, although, there is the theosophical animistic doctrine
which proports all motion as life; having intellegence and spirit which
together with the doctrine that all is spiritually evolving toward
divinity make a very pervasive case for pantheism.
> >Kabbalah is a model of theosophy which would be ultimate reality. Models
> >are excellent tools for exploration of systematic knowledge, and in this
> >case the model has magical properties and purposes.
> Here we have a point of difference. I see theosophy (little t) as the
> pursuit of ultimate reality, but not ultimate reality itself.
I agree with your position, having meant to say that Kabbalah is a model
and a tool that makes for a systematic exploration of reality which is
ultimately magickal; modifiable.
> The fact that the Kabbalah and Qabala have magical properties is
> the very reason why most good theosophists shun them. Like you,
> I enjoy the magic, and in fact have dubbed the entire inner 5 planes
> the Magical Universe to emphasize the point.
> >The discovery that the "Tree of Life" is a fractal geometry makes less
> >likely the assertion that the Tree or even the Decalogue are human
> >inventions, although, it does not eliminate that possibility.
> The entire Magical Universe is fractal. Life is fractal. Earth is
These "fractals" are each things that we did not create, man has not
created the Magical Universe, life or the Earth. Fractals are specific
formulations; infinitely repeating self similar patterns. What specific
"fractals" are you referring to?
> It is my personal opinion that the Tree of Life is, indeed,
> a human invention.
This is a difficult point. It is possible that the Tree of Life is an
invention I will grant you that, but the truth of the matter may be the
same as the case with mathematics. For instance, mathematics has been
developed to describe the geometry of the Platonic Solids, but that does
not mean that these solids are the invention of mathematicians as was
thought by some until recent times when the last elements of the
complete set were discovered in natural crystals. This in a round about
way supports the Platonic notion of forms, lending creedence to the idea
that we discover mathematical concepts, describe them in a languge that
we have invented, and don't invent the concepts themselves.
In the case of the Tree of Life the implications are a bit convoluted.
The Tree has always described Kabbalistic theosophy, but here I have
found a fractal that describes the Tree itself. The questions that
remain are, does this fractal still describe the theosophy, and what,
considering that Platonic forms have 'always' existed, does this say
about the origin of the Tree and the Decalogue which is one of its
features. Traditionally the Tree and the Decalogue were given to man by
G-d, and having a geometric 'version' of the Tree, IMHO, may very well
support that history.
> >Ethics stem from self knowledge. Western tradition recommends
> >that one seek self knowledge in order to love completely.
> This is a different slant on the picture, but I can't disagree with you.
> The thing is, when we finally come to grips with our "self" we will
> learn that we are not so different from others. Do unto others as
> you would have them do unto you is still probably the only real
> ethical law we need.
We are here in partial agreemeent, to say that we need only one ethical
law may be throwing the baby out with the bath water. The Golden Rule is
really a rule of thumb applied to rules of thumb.
> Subject: Re: Magick
> Yes humans have self-consciousness more than animals (who DO
> have some, contrary to what a lot of experts think). But what does
> this have to do with ethics?
> I can't see any "parts of the soul that ethics preserve." Maybe we
> differ about the word ethics itself?
> >If we look deeply into the origin
> >of ethics we find the "relationships among the parts of the soul" that
> >ethics preserve.
The key word is relationships. Kabbalisticly the soul has five parts,
which I have 'interpreted' as Heart, Spiritual-Soul, Mind, Strength, and
Senses. Some claim that the Ein Soph is among the five parts, and if the
Ein Soph is truly part of the soul, there would be six parts, IMHO.
A simple case of relationship is the functional relationship between
your Senses and your Mind which implies the need to truthfully describe
your experience; Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.
> Actually most "soul components" do not produce much harmony.
The parts of the soul are meant to function together harmoniously. The
source of harmony is transcendental.
> Not with most people. And one of the problems is the conscience.
Pain in the conscience is a high level form of negative feedback which
is what you are addressing as a problem, although, conscience can also
promote positive behaviors which provide the pleasure of self
> In Jungian psychology, this equates to the Shadow archetype, which
> will only allow harmony when it is in balance with the Persona.
> Jung taught that the problem with ethics and morals was the very
> first step in the individuation process that we have to settle. The
> entire dualistic battle between right and wrong, good and evil, must
> be resolved within each psyche in order to proceed with individuation.
> I haven't a clue what you mean by forbidden knowledges and actions.
The 'Thou shalt nots' especially the prohibition of covetousness which
forbids 'evil thoughts' so to speak.
> Do you mean repression?
No. Repression is a state of difficulty that is the result of
surpressing ill feelings or actions repeatedly over a long period;
according to Freud.
Following an ethical code should make one relatively free of 'guilt', I
> Subject: Magickal Response to Vincent
> >This is a case where I find that Kabbalah provides valuable insight.
> >Many or most think of the mind in terms of logic or Binah consciousness.
> Whoa!! Binah is above the Abyss, and is vastly superior to logic and
> reason, which I would put at the Hod level. Binah is Understanding,
> an intuitive function.
My remark represents a misinterpretation of what I have read concerning
Kabbalah, although, I have been told that the Tree is open to
interpretation, and my view of the abyss greatly departs from tradition.
However, for me Binah simply represents particles such as atoms in Fire
or words in language, and it also represents the Fire itself or
languages such as logic would be.
Hod would be associated with the faculty of memory or honor, and all
things virtual Air, spirit etc..
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