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Serial Lesson 48
From Course VI, The Sacred Tarot, Chapter 1
Original Copyright 1936, Elbert Benjamine (a.k.a. C. C. Zain)
Copyright 2010, The Church of Light
Subheadings: The Kabbalah of the Jews The Sephir Yetzirah The Letters Sephir Sephiroth Asch Metzareph The Zohar Reincarnation Soul-Mates The Four Realms Interpreting the Kabbalah Summary The Tarot Cards Utilize Both Extra-Sensory Perception and Extra-Physical Powers
Illustrations: Table of Correspondences King of Coins King of Cups King of Scepters King of Swords Queen of Coins Queen of Cups Queen of Scepters Queen of Swords
The Doctrine of Kabalism
THE word Kabbalah signifies traditional knowledge. It thus refers to the Oral Law, as handed down from antiquity; and embraces the occult traditions of all lands and all peoples.
Often it is used merely as referring to the esoteric doctrines of the Jews; but in its broader sense it includes also the secret doctrine of other races. This secret doctrine, common to many lands, was jealously guarded from the profane, and was never permitted to pass into writing except in such ambiguous terms as to baffle the uninitiated as to its true purport.
In this sense the sacred books of the world, including the Avesta, the Vedas and the Bible are largely kabbalistical; for they set forth traditions that are capable of an inner, or esoteric, interpretation. In fact, there are usually several interpretations possible, each more inner version revealing a deeper truth to those who have advanced along the path far enough to comprehend it.
The Kabbalah has two divisions; the Written Kabbalah and the Unwritten Kabbalah.
Of the unwritten Kabbalah, S. L. MacGregor Mathers, in his Kabbala Unveiled says: “The term ‘Unwritten Qbalah’ is applied to certain knowledge which is never entrusted to writing, but communicated orally. I may say no more on this point, not even whether I myself have or have not received it.”
The author of these lessons is not so modest about his acquaintance with the unwritten Kabbalah. He has received it fully, and has also investigated the written traditions of the Jews and of all other peoples having had much influence in shaping the world’s thought. And this seems the proper place to point out that the unwritten Kabbalah, like the written Kabbalah, is set forth in symbolical language, with purposeful blinds and subterfuges to confuse the uninitiated; so that of the few who undoubtedly exist at the present day who have received it, most remain in as much ignorance of its true interpretation as the majority of students do after studying the more accessible written Kabbalah.
This unwritten Kabbalah has been transmitted only through certain secret schools. Those receiving it well merit what is given to them. They are left to their own devices in the matter of interpretation. And because the real keys to its interpretation—astrology and the tarot—have been largely ignored, or distorted, they have floundered sadly in arriving at its meaning. Whether written or unwritten, the Kabbalah is a philosophy correlated to esoteric astrology as exemplified by the tarot; and it can only be comprehended fully by those who perceive the true relation between astrological energies and their pictured tarot exemplification.
The Kabbalah of the Jews
Because the Jewish Kabbalah has been the source of inspiration to so many alchemists, metaphysicians, occultists and mystics, it deserves special attention, and the remainder of the lesson will largely be devoted to it. It has three main divisions: A. The Practical Kabbalah. B. The Literal Kabbalah. C. The Dogmatic Kabbalah.
A. THE PRACTICAL Kabbalah treats of ceremonial magic, and includes the making of magic circles, wands, swords and pentacles, and the use of inscriptions and symbols for performing wonders. It deals with necromancy, sorcery, exorcisms, sigils, enchantments and communications with angels and devils.
Accessible books treating of this subject are: The Sixth and Seventh Book of Moses, The Greater Keys of Solomon the King, and The Lesser Keys of Solomon. Needless to say, as set forth in detail in Chapter 3 (Serial Lesson 185) of Course XVIII, Imponderable Forces, these books and all such practices are highly dangerous, and innocence is no protection to those who dabble in such matters.
B. THE LITERAL Kabbalah is so written that the letters and numbers and words must be transposed to perceive the meaning. It is a work really written in code, and must be systematically decoded to have any value. And the code in which it is written, and which must be used to decipher it, takes three different forms as follows:
1. GEMATRIA.—In this system, words of the same numerical value are used as symbols of each other, and phrases of the same numerical value are employed to explain each other. And as each Hebrew letter is a number, this number is also obtained and used, by adding the numerical value of the letters of a word or phrase.
2. TEMURA.—This is a code in which, according to prescribed rules, certain letters are substituted for other letters. In addition to this permutation, the form of the letters occasionally used, and the variations in spelling, all have a hidden meaning, and for important matters anagrams are employed.
3. NOTARIQUON.—In the practice of this, abbreviations are extensively used. Every letter, for instance, may be taken as the abbreviation of a word, and a single word expanded into a sentence. Or the first letters, or the medials, of every word in a sentence may be used to construct one word that conveys the mystical import it is desired to impart.
But even after, though determining just what code has been used, having translated the literal Kabbalah into ordinary language, it still presents the matter in the form of universal symbols, which, while quite pregnant with meaning to those who understand this universal language, is merely a collection of babbling allegories to one ignorant of the tarot and astrology.
C. DOGMATIC Kabbalah This division of the Jewish secret doctrine has four chief headings, each embracing more or less numerous commentaries which were written at different times by different writers: 1. Sephir Yetzirah. 2. Sephir Sephiroth. 3. Asch Metzareph. 4. The Zohar. Yet none of what is now called the Jewish Kabbalah was placed in writing before the beginning of the Christian Era.
We are seriously informed by commentators that it was first taught by God to his select angels who formed a school in Paradise. Then, after the fall, the doctrine was communicated to man that by its means he might regain his lost estate. From Adam it passed to Noah, then to Abraham, on to the Egyptians, from whom it reached Moses.
Moses was further instructed regarding it by an angel, during his forty years in the wilderness. Then Moses injected its doctrines covertly into the first four books of the Pentateuch, and initiated Aaron and the Seventy Elders into its secrets. From them, according to this tradition, it was handed down through an unbroken line of priesthood succession which included David and Solomon, to the time of the destruction of the second temple; when, for the first time, it was committed to writing.
This account, due allowance being granted to its symbolism, conforms rather closely to the traditions regarding the line of descent of the secret doctrine as recorded by initiates of other than the Jewish race.
It is held by this tradition that once the earth had a very different climate, warm and mild, and that the people of the Golden Age, like those in Jewish Paradise, were free from strife, and needed to take no thought as to what they should eat or what they should wear. So pure were they that they had constant communion with the angels.
But gradually changing climatic conditions, in which life became increasingly severe, coarsened the bodies and the minds of the people of the earth. And finally, so terrible was the struggle for survival with the advent of the Age of Iron, when a glacial sheet covered most of the northern hemisphere, that man was forced to eat the flesh of animals to avoid starvation. And thus descending to the plane of a carnivorous creature, the increasing activity of his animal soul cut off his ability to communicate with still higher entities. He no longer could get his information direct from the angels, because he had become too selfish and coarse to be able to tune in on their vibratory rates, and he must, perforce, get whatever he wished of the secret doctrine from those of his race who had preserved the tradition from an earlier time.
This kabalistic knowledge was a teaching concerning the origin of the universe, man’s proper relation to God and all other entities, why man entered material conditions, and how he might through partaking of the Tree of Good and Evil ultimately regain his spiritual estate and also partake of the Tree of Life, and so attain Self-Conscious-Immortality.
From the children of the Golden Age, the tradition relates, this information was handed down by word of mouth, as allegorical stories, to more material times. And thus it came to be an essential part of the wisdom for which the ancient lands of Atlantis and Mu are renowned.
Before the last cataclysm, in the Bible referred to as the flood of Noah, when the last of these two older continents sank, the Priests of Stellar Wisdom, perceiving through astrological cycles the approach of such a disaster, had encouraged the establishment of colonies in what later were to become the seven ancient centers of civilization—Egypt, India, Crete, Peru, Mexico, China and Chaldea. And to these colonies then established, that the ancient spiritual wisdom might not perish from the earth, they sent those to reside who were familiar with it.
Just when the colonists from Atlantis or Mu reached their various outposts is not clearly defined. But in Egypt, Moses, educated by the priesthood, came directly in contact with their teachings, and in his wilderness wanderings received further communications from higher intelligences; all of which became a part of the doctrine held by the Jewish priests, and handed down to later times in the form of abstruse allegories.
It seems certain that none of what now is known as the Jewish Kabbalah was written until after the commencement of the Christian era. The first to place any of this traditional knowledge in writing is reputed to have been Ben-Ha-Kanah, about 70 A.D. Rabbi Ismael be Elisha wrote about 121 A.D. And Simon be Jochai, another Talmudist, the supposed writer of the Zohar, appeared about 150 A.D.
However as a matter of historical research, it is found that the Kabbalah first put in an external appearance in the seventh century, apparently through Neo-Platonist and Neo-Pythagorean channels. The main body of the Zohar seems to have been unknown, except in the secret schools, until the thirteenth century of our era.
The early writings on the Kabbalah include a work called Palaces, describing God’s throne and His angelic household, a work of The Dimensions of Deity, and the Alphabet of Rabbi Akiba. In this letter each Hebrew letter is taken to represent a primordial spiritual idea.
The Sephir Yetzirah
In the eighth century the Sephir Yetzirah put in an external appearance. It is a complete philosophical system, divided into 33 brief sections, each in reality based upon one of the 12 zodiacal signs, one of the 10 planets, one of the 10 numerals, or the seal of the earth.
The work opens with the statement that there are 32 paths of secret wisdom. These are further elaborated in a commentary, called the 32 Paths of Wisdom, written in 32 brief sections.
Sephir Yetzirah signifies The Book of Formation, and is supposed to have been dictated by Abraham. The key to its meaning is the manner in which it is divided into chapters. As in all there are 6 chapters, the formation of the universe is to be explained through a study of the number 6. This number, as reference to Arcanum VI indicates, has for divinatory significance the word Temptation, and in numbers indicates the oscillation of unequilibriated forces in their action and reaction. Astrologically, it corresponds to Venus, the planet of love. Therefore, according to the system upon which the Sephir Yetzirah is to be interpreted, the idea is conveyed that the Infinite was Tempted into expression through the desire to love. The Supernal Mind, that it might enjoy love, brought forth the manifested universe.
Of these 6 chapters, the first contains 12 sections, which, of course, correspond to 12 zodiacal signs.
The second chapter has 5 sections and the third chapter has 5 sections. Thus these two chapters represent the universal man divided as male and female; the number of man being 5 and the number of woman being 5; and together these numbers embracing the 10 numerals of the decade.
The fourth chapter has 4 sections, each representing one of the formative attributes of the septenary, corresponding to the 4 negative planets: Saturn, Venus, Moon and Mercury.
The fifth chapter has 3 sections, each representing one of the 3 active principles of the septenary, corresponding to Sun, Mars and Jupiter.
The sixth chapter contains the remaining four sections each representing one of the three remaining planets of the chain, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto, and the seal of the earth which synthesizes these 32 numbers and astrological forces into a single grand unity.
Masonry and the tarot are both founded upon 33 universal principles. These are rather unsatisfactorily set forth in kabalistical code in the Sephir Yetzirah. They bear a correspondence in human anatomy to the 24 vertebrae plus the 9 ankylosed bones that form the base of the spine. In the widest sense Deity is the 33, or unifying principle. Thus we have the doctrine set forth kabalistically that Deity, all-potential and alone, was Tempted into an expression of his Love, and this formative power became diversified into the 32 principles through which His love is Realized.
In the kabalistical system each Hebrew letter is not only a number but in addition represents an idea. Just what the idea is which is thus associated with each letter it is a function of the Tarot to reveal.
The Hebrew alphabet as a whole contains 22 letters. These are divided by kabalists into three groups. The first group contains the three mother letters, representing certain general principles, from which the other letters and their corresponding principles were formed. Then there are seven double letters, and finally twelve single letters.
The three mother letters are Aleph, Mem, and Shin. Aleph represents the plane of spirit, Mem relates to the astral world, and Shin to the physical where all is given form. Thus do the three mother letters correspond to ego, Soul and Body of the Universal Man.
Certain other letters are sometimes aspirated and sometimes not, and are thus called double letters. As there are seven planets and seven active attributes in nature so are there seven double letters; Beth, Gimel, Daleth, Caph, Pe, Resh, and Tau. And as there are 12 zodiacal signs, so there are 12 single letters, although in detail they do not correspond to them: He, Vau, Zain, Cheth, Teth, Jod, Lamed, Nun, Sameck, Ayin, Tzaddi, and Quoph.
And now we arrive at a point which may easily prove somewhat confusing to the student. It is the numerical equivalence of the Hebrew letters, and of the corresponding English letters.
The Hebrew and the Chaldean square-formed letters are identical, and the square-formed Egyptian letters are very similar. These letters were originally hieroglyphics for the spiritual ideas represented by the corresponding Major Arcanum of the tarot, these, in turn, being correlated spiritually to astrology. Each letter, thus, expressed a number—some number from 1 to 22—which had the same thought-vibratory rate as one of the 22 astrological influences.
But these letters coming into use by those uninitiated in this spiritual and vibratory relation naturally were subject to conventionalizing influences. And furthermore, those who sought to make translations from Hebrew into the English language had no knowledge of the vibratory rate of a letter, and no care for its spiritual correspondence. Consequently, translators have made use of equivalents which, although convenient for them, are not of the same vibratory rate.
Therefore, to preserve the true numerical value of each square-formed letter, occult students have continued to use their original numerical significance rather than those established by later conventional use. And in deriving the English equivalent of a square-formed ancient letter, in those cases where translators have substituted an English letter with a different thought-vibratory rate, occult students use a true vibratory equivalent. Thus the Hebrew Tau, which means the sign of the cross, is translated conventionally as Th ; and Teth, which means serpent, is translated conventionally as T. But not only is T in the form of the Tau cross used in many lands, but with its point down thus represents the creative energy diverted to earthly ends, and as such it has the significance of 22 and not 9; and 9 has the vibration of Th, the serpent, the spiral of life, being the Deific number.
This translation of T and Th is the outstanding difference between conventional translators and occult students. But it should be understood by those who study the Kabbalah and the tarot, that in such studies the real vibratory rate of a letter is the important thing in determining its correspondence in another language; and that the English equivalent of each square-formed letter has been tested out on this basis.
The correct numerical and English equivalent of each square-formed ancient letter will be found in a table at the front of this booklet. And that the student may also have the conventional, and therefore exoteric, significance, a list here follows:
1. Aleph, A, means ox. 2. Beth, B, means house. 3. Gimel, G, means camel. 4. Daleth, D, means door. 5. He, H, means window. 6. Vau, V, means nail. 7. Zain, Z, means weapon. 8. Cheth, Ch, means fence. 9. Teth, T, means serpent. 10. Jod, J, means hand. 20. Caph, K, means palm of hand. 30. Lamed, L, means ox-goad. 40. Mem, M, means water. 50. Nun, N, means fish. 60. Samek, S, means support. 70. Ayin, O, means eye. 80. Pe, P, means mouth. 90. Tzaddi, Tz, means fishing-hook. 100. Quoph, Q, means back of head. 200. Resh, R, means head. 300. Shin, Sh, means tooth. 400. Tau, Th, means sign of the cross.
The Sephir Sephiroth is also called the Book of Emanations. It treats of the numerical expansion of the undifferentiated state of evolution. That is, it explains that creation, as it later came into existence, was first in the Divine Mind. Then to give this mental conception a more external form it was projected into an evolutionary system, by means of definite impulses, each of which bears a relation to a certain number. The universe is thus shown to have been created according to a definite plan, the parts of this plan bearing numerical relations to each other. This plan calls for a continuous expansion of possibilities, whereby an infinitely diverse number of forms move perpetually forward toward greater perfection.
The work, as written, is highly mystical; for it considers these impulses from the Divine Mind, by which the universe is brought into existence, as bearing the same relation to each other as do certain numbers. These numbers are thus the representatives of universal principles.
The student, therefore, who would read the Sephir Sephiroth understandingly must be well versed both in the Hermetic System of Numbers, and the Doctrine of Signatures; for the Doctrine of Signatures reveals in full concrete details the action of those principles which are but abstractions when merely considered as numerical relations.
Asch Metzareph, or Purifying Fire, treats of alchemy. To comprehend the allegories in which it is written the student must have a thorough knowledge of chemistry, of astrology, and of the tarot. The action of substance upon substance, as set forth in this treatise in the language of universal symbolism, depends upon the inner nature of each; upon that quality which we now recognize as its vibratory rate.
The most studied of the Jewish kabalistical works is the Zohar, or Book of Splendor. It is generally supposed to have been written by Simon be Jochai, about 150 A.D. Moses de Leon made it accessible to the public in the thirteenth century.
It embraces The Book of Concealed Mystery, The Greater Holy Assembly, The Lesser Holy Assembly, The Aged Man, The Book of Clear Light, The Faithful Shepherd, The Palaces, The Secret of The Law, The Concealed Treatise, Mysteries of Mysteries, Song of Songs, Come and See, The Youth, Illustrations of The Law, The Early Work, and certain fragments.
The aim is to reveal to the worthy the nature of the Supreme Being, the equilibrium of contrarities, cosmogony, the symbolism of numerals, the nature of man and angels, the law as revealed, the nature and destiny of the soul, and much about angels, elementals, demons and other occult intelligences.
The most essential and most emphasized of all kabalistical doctrines is expressed in translations of the Jewish work as “Quod Superius, Quod Inferius,” which means, that which is above is as that which is below, the Macroposopus, the universal man, is to be understood by a study of Microposopus, the finite man. God is thus related to the natural universe as the ego is related to the body of man. Consequently, we find Deity commonly referred to as The Ancient One, The Vast Countenance, Illimitable One, The Concealed of the Concealed, Adam Kadmon (the Archetypal Man), etc.
Next in kabalistical importance comes the doctrine of the Ten Emanations of the Sephiroth, by which the universe was created. Sephiroth means numerical emanation, and the Kabbalah teaches that all manifestation is accomplished in definite numerical proportions through actions and reactions in the One Primeval undifferentiated substance.
Prior to creation there was Ain Soph Aur, meaning limitless light, or non-differentiated substance. The first emanation, or numerical impulse is known as Kether, meaning Crown, and symbolizing Motion or Life.
Instantly, upon motion being transmitted to the non-polarized, universal, all-diffusive spirit, it becomes polarized into two attributes, positive and negative, masculine and feminine, action and reaction; for life or motion is impossible apart from sex, or polarity. It is impossible to have action without reaction, positive polarity without negative polarity, motion without something moving, something moving without form. Consequently, springing into existence simultaneously with Kether, or Life, are two other emanations called Chocmah and Binah. These usually are translated as Wisdom and Intelligence by theological kabalists who try to dethrone anything feminine from the Deific Trinity. But all initiates are aware that they mean Love and Light; for Love is the highest and truest Wisdom.
However large the orbit of the student’s investigations, or however recondite the plane of its action, he will find that it must start with, and finally end in, this kabalistical trinity of Life, Light and Love. From this primitive trinity of positive, negative and union the universe became differentiated into Seven specific attributes through seven additional emanations.
The Ten Emanations of the Sephiroth are, therefore, the Seven Active Principles of Nature springing from a central source of Life, Light and Love—from a triune God-head, or Spiritual Sun—just as we receive magnetism, light and heat from the physical sun.
Although it has been well known that there is a strict correspondence between astrological principles and the 10 Emanations of the Sephiroth, the Emanations really manifesting as astrological forces, this correspondence has heretofore been carefully concealed as part of the Greater Mysteries. Also, as the universe is divided into positive, negative and union, kabalists have divided the 10 Emanations into three pillars, or Trees. The tree on the right is the Biblical tree of Good, the Masonic pillar Jachin, kabalistically known as the Father, or Pillar of Mercy. The tree on the left is the biblical tree of Evil, the Masonic pillar Boaz, kabalistically known as the Mother, or Pillar of Justice. Centrally between these two trees of the knowledge of good and evil stands the tree of Life, conferring Immortality. It is the place of union of Jachin and Boaz, kabalistically known as the Shekinah.
But early kabalists, to conceal their knowledge from the profane, in illustrating the trees in the form of a diagram, gave it incorrectly, knowing the spiritually enlightened in the course of their initiation would discover the error. It would thus point to the truth without actually revealing it, which by their oath they were bound not to do. In all current works upon the Kabbalah, therefore, being copied from older works, we find emanation 2-4-7 constituting the Tree of Good, 3-5-8 the Tree of Evil, and 1-6-9-10 the Tree of Life, the Shekinah, or Pillar of Mildness. The correct diagram is given on page (this reference is not available in the html file), where it will be seen that as should be, the even, or esoteric, numbers 2-4-8 constitute the right-hand Pillar of Goodness, and the exoteric numbers 3-5-7 constitute the left-hand Pillar of Evil. Also it will be seen that the necessary planetary correspondences to each of the emanations when arranged in the latter manner will place benefic planets on the Tree of Good and malefic planets on the Tree of Evil.
The First emanation is called Kether, meaning Crown, and symbolizing Life or Motion. It corresponds to the planet Pluto. It belongs at the head of the Tree of Life, containing latent within itself both male and female potencies.
The Second emanation is Chocmah, meaning Wisdom, and symbolizing Love. It corresponds to the planet Neptune, the head of the Tree of Good, in a spiritual sense being positive to Uranus, though not so from the material plane.
The Third emanation is Binah, meaning Intelligence, and symbolizing Light. It corresponds to the planet Uranus, being the head of the Tree of Evil, being external to, and therefore more gross and spiritually negative than Neptune, and also commonly much more malefic.
The Fourth emanation is Chesed, meaning Mercy, and symbolizing Beneficence. It corresponds to the planet Jupiter, being the middle of the Tree of Good, and positive to the Saturn principle of Evil.
The Fifth emanation is Geburah, meaning Severity, and symbolizing Affliction. It corresponds to the planet Saturn, the middle of the Tree of Evil, and is negative to the principle of Good.
The Sixth emanation is Tippereth, meaning Beauty, symbolizing Attraction. It corresponds to the planet Venus, the middle of the Tree of Life, where all influences join in a common harmonious Union.
The Seventh emanation is Netzach, meaning Victory and symbolizing Conflict. It corresponds to the planet Mars, the foot of the Tree of Evil, and is negative to Mercury even as blind force is ever subject to intelligence.
The Eighth emanation is Hod, meaning Splendor, and symbolizing Knowledge. It corresponds to the planet Mercury, the foot of the Tree of Good, and is positive to the instincts and impulses of Mars.
The Ninth emanation is Yesod, meaning Foundation and symbolizing Formation. It corresponds to the Moon, next to the foot of the Tree of Life, the enfolding, formative power that gives external expression to Tippereth.
The Tenth emanation is Malkuth, symbolizing Vitality. It corresponds to the Sun, at the foot of the Tree of Life, wherein the Spiritual Ideals of Kether, having been attracted by Tippereth, and having undergone formative gestation of Yesod, are brought forth in full Virility of expression, becoming in man Self-Conscious-Immortality.
These three trees have been the great mystery of the Kabbalah, and volumes of abstruse reasoning and mystical allegories have been written in the attempt to throw light upon it; for kabalists have all perceived that the Tree of Life, or the four emanations 1-6-9-10, constitutes the secret of Immortality. But just what this signifies in human life only a few have discovered, and others have blundered along blindly for want of proper keys, which astrology and the tarot alone afford. But the moment any kabalist is shown that Venus is Tippereth he immediately perceives the truth.
The head of the Tree of Life is the planet Pluto, symbolizing the separation of the sexes, the place where soul-mates part on their downward journey and the place where they must again unite on their upward path. But the Tree of Life itself is formed by the union of the Tree of Good with the Tree of Evil—three positive forces and three negative forces meeting at a common point called Tippereth. Thus what Venus is to the human body, by the law of correspondence, Tippereth must be to the Tree of Life.
Now Venus rules the seed and union, and kabalists are well aware that the Shekinah, or Tree of Life, is some kind of union. But what they usually fail to recognize is that in man there is a spiritual seed as well as one physical, and that union, as indicated by the four vibratory levels, or stations, represented by the four emanations within the Tree of Life, can take place on the plane of degeneration, on the level of generation, in the realm of regeneration, or in the exalted state of the reunion of soul-mates.
Yet Venus, the planet of love, is the key to this revelation. For those who recognize that Tippereth is a seed endowed with life during union, giving formative expression in the womb of Yesod, and brought forth into life and action by Malkuth, even as daily this is known to happen in the generation and birth of children, should easily recognize that the same principle applies to the evolution of Immortality. But, of course, as in bringing forth life in the domain of Malkuth, at the foot of the tree, the energies are directed toward the earth, and as immortality is not of earth but of the highest spheres, the energies must be directed toward the highest level of union, toward the exalted and permanent exchange of spiritual energies which corresponds to Pluto when that planet is represented by the letter T with its point up, instead of down toward Malkuth, as commonly written.
A few kabalists have perceived the truth of this matter. One, for instance, who was also a great alchemist, states in his writings that he was acquainted with the mystery of transmutation but had never proceeded to the practice because he had not found a woman who could help him in the work.
Also Mr. A. E. Waite, the eminent kabalist, in speaking of the Shekinah says: “I have said there are intimations of this state in eastern teachings, by which, I mean India, but that—so far as I am aware—they have not passed into writing.” And he further concludes, after an exhaustive study of kabalistical literature: “We shall come to recognize only one secret doctrine of Jewry, which is the secret concerning sex.”
This seems to be the place to mention that the Jewish Kabbalah teaches reincarnation, but only for those who fail to finish their work, and never more than three times. And even in these instances, more often than not, more than one soul occupies the same body to gain strength. Thus the teachings of the Zohar contradict the teachings of reincarnation as commonly taught in the East. It sets forth the impossibility of numerous reincarnations, and really seems to be a confused notion regarding the attachment of a discarnate soul to one in the flesh for some definite gaining of experience or the performance of some unusual purpose.
The doctrine of soul-mates is quite distinctly taught in the Zohar, it being stated that those who abide by the laws of the Lord will meet and marry their true soul-mates; but that those who pervert the law will be denied such union. Impurity keeps soul-mates apart, but purity and a moral life bring them together, and when so united there also will be a permanent heavenly union after death.
God, Himself, is both Father and Mother. The word Elohim, translated in Genesis as God, is Feminine plural; but the translators of the Bible, not wishing women to share in anything Divine, have rendered it throughout in the Masculine singular. There is, however, an inadvertent admission of the Father-Mother principle when Adam is said to have been made in the image of “Elohim, Male and Female made He them.” Hebrew scholars say that “Eloh ” is feminine singular, and that the ending “im,” is a termination of the masculine plural, the two being used together to indicate a feminine potency united to a masculine idea.
Throughout the Kabbalah “The Ancient of Days” is considered both Male and Female, and the Ten Emanations are divided into 5 positive and 5 negative attributes.
The Four Realms
The Ten Emanations of the Sephiroth are divided into groups having affinity with the four worlds; but at the same time the ten emanations also each manifest in these four realms. The four kabalistical worlds are: 1. Atziluth, meaning Emanation and symbolizing the celestial realm and the element fire. 2. Briah, meaning Creation and symbolizing the spiritual realm and the element air. 3. Yetzirah, meaning Formation and symbolizing the astral realm and the element water. 4. Assiah, meaning Action and symbolizing the physical realm and the element earth.
The first 3 emanations relate particularly to Celestial realms, the place of ideals, even as Pluto, Neptune and Uranus have an influence over the highest ideals of man.
The second 3 emanations pertain specifically to Spiritual realms, to the creative regions, even as Jupiter, Saturn and Venus have an influence over man’s moral nature, his reflective powers and his affections.
The third 3 emanations relate more closely to the formative regions, to the Astral realms, even as Mercury, Mars and the Moon image, construct and mold the products of man’s genius.
And the final emanation belongs to the Physical world, to the realm of practical action, even as the Sun vitalizes and brings forth from the soil innumerable forms of life.
Interpreting the Kabbalah
The great kabalistical student, Eliphas Levi, asserts that the Kabbalah is a sealed book to anyone unfamiliar with the tarot. Not only is this true, but the tarot, as here presented, will be found a key to unlock all other sacred books as well. To the discriminating student the most difficult kabalistical phrases will yield their inner meaning when the tarot methods are applied.
Very briefly to illustrate, we find The Book of Concealed Mystery opens thus:
“The Book of Concealed Mystery is the Book of the equilibrium of balance.” The balance here referred to is Polarity, as exemplified by the Second Major Arcanum of the tarot.
“For before there was equilibrium, countenance beheld not countenance.” That is, consciousness was not possible before this duality.
“And the Kings of ancient times were dead, and their crowns were found no more: and the earth was desolate.” These kings of the tarot being in ancient times, indicates a previous round of evolution; being dead refers to the cosmic sleep of nirvana. Kether, or Crown, means activity; therefore, intelligence of the Divine Mind was inactive, and there was no differentiation in progress.
“Until that head, desired by all desires, appeared and communicated the vestments of honor.” Arcanum I, Deific Intelligence, awakens and sends the first Divine thought-wave throbbing throughout the unmanifested void of Ain Soph Aur.
“This equilibrium hangeth in that region which is negatively existent in ‘The Ancient One.” Arcanum II, Isis, where polarity first manifests, is negative, or feminine.
Such explanations might be carried out in regard to every Kabalistical statement.
As the Jewish Kabbalah is mostly written in code, and all of it in the form of allegories, it takes much effort for the student to form a clear idea of its chief tenets. I will, therefore, here sum them up in unequivocal language:
1. God and the Universe are the Ego and Body of the Grand Man, or Macrocosm; and finite man, or the microcosm, is a miniature copy of the Grand Man, corresponding to Him in all details.
2. The universe sprang into differentiated existence in conformity to the law of numbers. These ten emanations from Deity manifest on every plane as 3 general and 7 specific attributes. In their interaction with one another they form, by a principle similar to that giving musical overtones, 22 less abstract and more specialized influences, or astrological qualities. These, manifesting as the 12 zodiacal signs and 10 planets of the chain, together with the 10 original numbers, form the 32 paths of evolution, which really are the 32 factors of all manifested existence. Yet at any given time all these 32 influences converge at every point in the universe. That is, in some quantity they are everywhere present. And the specific point where they thus manifest—the earth, for instance—being a synthesis of their influence, constitutes a 33rd factor.
3. Great importance is attached to sex, it being taught that man can reach the feminine principle above only through union. The Shekinah is perfect union; and it is taught that mankind approaches God only through Shekinah. Those of impure mind and gross passions can not partake of Shekinah, for Shekinah is the Tree of Life, partaking of the fruits of which mankind is brought face to face with Adonai ; entering thus into Divine Consciousness.
4. Souls are differentiated in pairs, have an existence before material birth, are separated before incarnation; and it is this separation which constitutes the original transgression. But through living a pure and spiritual life on earth they ultimately are attracted to each other and may even meet on earth. This meeting is the Shekinah, and in time permanently reunites them in heaven.
5. As exemplifying these four doctrines and their numerous offshoots, there is the mystery of the pronunciation of the name of Deity, which in the Bible is translated Jehovah, and in Hebrew is a word of four letters, IEVE, or Jod-He-Vau-He.
Jewish tradition holds that, “He who can rightly pronounce it, causeth heaven and earth to tremble, for it is the name which rusheth through the universe.”
The real significance of this venerated word is that it stands as representing the four universal principles; and therefore he who understands these four letters is also able to comprehend all power and all manifestation; and he who is able to pronounce it—or utilize his knowledge—is able to live in complete harmony with the Divine Law and thus partakes also of Divine power. It really signifies that nothing is impossible to one who unites himself to the Cosmic Will.
Because it is composed of four letters the name is called the Tetragrammaton. These four letters, which are symbols of positive, negative, union and vibration, can be transposed in 12 different ways, all conveying the same meaning, just as nature manifests through the 12 zodiacal signs, yet in essence remains the same.
These twelve ways of expressing the Deific name are called the 12 banners. These banners are spelled thus: IEVE—IEEV—IVEE—EVEI—EVIE—EEIV—VEEI—VIEE—VEIE—EIEV—EIVE—EEVI.
The Tarot Cards Utilize Both Extra-Sensory Perception and Extra-Physical Powers
A vast amount of experimentation by universities in America and in England since the discovery of Pluto in 1930 not only proves that man possesses the power to gain, through extra-sensory perception, information not accessible to reason and the physical senses, but that this perception extends into both the past and the future.
On the inner plane consciousness can be extended unhindered by physical distance,and extended backwards and forwards in physical time. Even as to gain knowledge on the physical plane, so on the inner plane the attention must be focused on the information desired. The tarot cards, through their universal symbols, are designed, among other things, to assist in extending the inner-plane consciousness and focusing it on the information desired.
All mental processes are governed by the LAW OF ASSOCIATION. What has been perceived on the inner plane through extra-sensory perception resides in the unconscious mind as a memory. To remember it—to bring it up into objective consciousness—there must be a line of association between what is in objective consciousness and this memory. The symbols on the tarot cards are the most effective means known of forming the associations that enable what was perceived through extra-sensory perception to be recognized by objective consciousness.
The university experimenters have also demonstrated that physical objects can be influenced without the aid of any physical contact with them. This result of using extra-physical power they call the PK (Psychokinetic) Effect. The unconscious mind, or soul, uses this power to cause the tarot cards in a spread to become so placed as to reveal information obtained through extra-sensory perception.
Table of Correspondences
King of Coins
King of Cups
King of Scepters
King of Swords
Queen of Coins
Queen of Cups
Queen of Scepters
Queen of Swords