Posts tagged TRANSCENDENCE MEDITATIONS
This week is Parsha Mishpatim, and I discovered a common thread running through everything I gathered for it. It is a common thread regarding transcending mind noise, or in a positive expression, it’s mindfulness. It’s about transcending mind noise, and I’ll show how events in this Parsha fit into that category.
First of all, Parsha Mishpatim talks very directly about staying away from shekker, which means deceit or lies. Our Sages come up with all kinds of recipes and definitions of what that means in our lives, part of which are transcending the mind noise created by the actions and lies of others people toward us.
Another aspect this Parsha talks about is to not take bribes. Bribes create a mind noise which makes a person fail to see objectively any more, even a righteous person. We have to stay away from that mind noise, the Parsha tells us.
We have to stay away from the noise of doubt. When the people said, “We will do and we will hear,” they kicked doubt out of their mindset. That’s the most profound mind noise-ridding we have in the Parsha, because that got them back to the level of the Garden of Eden when they said, essentially, “Sight unseen, G-d, we’re jumping in and doing whatever you say!”
At that, the Israelites were blessed with zero mind noise, unlike all of us living in these not-yet-Garden of Eden times who are struggling constantly, in every situation. Staying away from doubt is probably the biggest mind noise trap of all.
But, there’s more… There’s the mind noise we spoke about in the previous Parasha which is a preemptive strike. It has to do with one person coming into another person’s house in order to steal from them. They are coming into that house with the assumption they may be killed, so they will probably be locked and loaded, and ready to shoot first.
We have to be able to pre-empt that thing when they come in, and to shoot first in that situation. And that’s a way of dealing with the evil inclination as well. When we deal with the Evil Inclination as our own inner struggle by pre-empting the battle, we win. When we don’t, we don’t. That’s a huge transcendence of the mind noise happening to us as well.
In Parsha Mishpatim it talks about the righteous convert. So, another type of mind noise transcendence is compassion. It is to look at a person, as the Torah tells us to do, and to have compassion on that person, who may be a stranger, or a convert. Many people fall into the trap of cruelty as opposed to compassion.
We have the mind noise of people in our lives whom we hate. The Torah tells us, “You’ve got the mind noise of hate in your mind? Help the hated one. If you see a person who is bent down with some kind of burden, drop what you’re doing and go help him. That will help you get rid of you get rid of your mind noise as you help him. It gets rid of the horrible mind noise called hating.
Another mind noise is taking pleasure in G-d. There are passages that say G-d is going to help us get rid of our sickness, and so forth, because we will get to a place where we are taking pleasure in what’s happening in the world and what’s happening in our lives. That’s a mind noise inside ourselves. And we need to take pleasure in G-d and the role he’s playing in our lives instead. That’s a pleasure that is sort of the opposite of worldly pleasures.
Moses going up the mountain for 40 days is one of the scriptures here. It represents freedom from mind noise in the form of detachment. He was detached enough to not eat or drink or probably even sleep for 40 days up on the mountain. He was a human being, but he had such a high level of detachment that all the mind noise of, “I need this, I need that…” was removed from who he was.
Perhaps I’ll find other examples of mind noise cancellation, maybe in this Parsha and maybe in my life. But it opens up a very big topic, the idea of the mindfulness of getting rid of mind noise.
The theme of Parsha Yitro, as I see it, is transcendence of Torah, and the power of receiving Torah. It happened in and around the receiving of Torah, which is in Parsha Yitro.
Yitro is the name of Moses’ converted father-in-law, who had tasted every aspect, every flavor of every religion in the world before he came to realize and accept upon himself Judaism as the one, true religion. In doing so, he made a great sanctification of G-d’s name in his life.
He was also a man of vision and insight into people. So he was the one, maybe the only one qualified to successfully give advice to his son-in-law, Moses, the greatest scholar and prophet of all time. He was able to tell Moses that he needed to allocate the various responsibilities of helping and guiding the people to many others, along with himself. This shows, retroactively, that he was able to go down to the essence of every person, and to see who they were and what their essence was, because Moses’s soul was an over-soul. He was able to see the essence of everybody inside of himself, and thereby he’d know exactly what to tell them.
Another transcendent aspect that comes through in this Parsha is that Moses was able to see other people’s essence and greatness, not only by identifying it inside his own self, but also, as the Zohar goes to great lengths to explain, to see how each person’s body reveals deep secrets about that person. That includes lines on the face, the distance of eyes, ears, nose and mouth from each other, the color of the eyes, the entire arrangement of the face. These are things we may feel intuitively, but the Zohar goes into great detail about knowing the essence of a person, based on his or her physical make-up. It reveals what the spiritual personality is all about. It’s another transcendence, inside-information resource about humans.
The whole of Parsha Yitro is leading toward coming to the mountain, which is probably the most transcendent experience mankind has ever had. Even before they got to the mountain, their openness to accept whatever G-d offers them, sight unseen, puts them at the level of Adam before the sin. It earns them the level of transcending sickness, aging and death because they were living on the level of accepting unseen whatever it was that G-d would bring out for them. They lifted themselves up to angelic reality, where they would not age, become sick or die.
Another transcendent point was that all the Ten Commandments were given in one word. In one word, they got the entire Torah, which is a very hard thing to understand. Their experience, as they received the Torah, were also very, very extraordinary. They were actually able to see the audio and to hear the visual. They rose themselves up to a place beyond space and time and normal understanding.
Another extraordinary point is that Torah was downloaded into each person who accepted it at that time. The Zohar talks about how the Torah and the Israelites and G-d are all one. When you get to the level where you connect to one of them, you connect to the other two as well. Torah, G-d and the Neshama, the soul… that’s the level the Israelites achieved at Mt. Sinai as well.
One extraordinary thing is how we hear a story. Parsha Yitro begins with the words that Yitro (Jethro) heard. You could have a thousand people, and 999 of them hear something one way, but that one, rare person hears it in the proper way, and that completely changes the reality of how we understand. So, we learn from that how to hear. Yitro heard from the cosmic happenings, what was happening to the Israelites, and understood, “I have to come. If that’s what’s happening to them, then they are my people.”
Within the Ten Commandments the Israelites received there are 620 letters, which equals the numerical value of the Sephira Keter, which shows they are G-d’s will. All of the letters of the Ten Commandments are hints to the entire Torah as well. Another hint is that 620 is 613 mitzvoth plus another seven mitzvoth from the rabbis. So, it’s Keter, and it’s all the mitzvoth and the entire Torah just waiting to be expounded upon.
Parsha Yitro also talks about the idea of Torah itself being the culmination of the Israelites’ entire experience in Egypt, coming out of Egypt, and in preparing themselves to get to Mt. Sinai. The Torah they received is the ultimate, transcendent aspect of life. It showed them G-d’s will in any particular situation, but Torah, in itself, is a type of a cure-all. Connecting to Torah lifts a person above any negative effects in nature and any other way.
My teachers have told me, and they got this from our Sages… if anything is bothering you, just turn up the volume of Torah. Turn up the intensity, and turn up the quantity of Torah you’re learning. You’ll find healing in that.
So, it’s an interface with G-d, the fact we learn it now and that they received in the past it as well.
Continuing in the Soul Series, this post is on the topic of Holy Sparks. It’s about seeing how our soul develops itself and speaks to us, and how we speak to our soul as well, through the idea of the Holy Sparks.
Anytime there’s a fall-out in the cosmos, such as the original fall-out of the broken vessels, or the fall-out of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, or the fall-out of any exile of the Jews throughout history, there are Holy Sparks hidden inside reality. And it’s our soul’s job to be drawn toward those sparks in order to liberate, elevate and clarify them, and to raise them up wherever they need to go. So we need to raise the sparks in that way.
So, I’d like to share a list of ways our soul can restore us to ourselves, and to the lost parts of our soul.
First we have to be able to resonate with what’s going on in our lives. Then we have to be able to bring back into ourselves that which is calling to us in life, through the language of resonation, an energy wavelength we need to plug into and feel personally, “This is me. I need to work with this now.”
And we need to do this in all different times of our lives, because every day we have new sparks, more lost parts of our soul that are calling to us, to bring them back home. This is the essence of what our day is all about, really. Every weekday we have more sparks, and we bring them all, from all the weekdays into Shabbat, creating the power of Shabbat and its connection with each weekday as well.
We have sparks in every prayer, and every time we pray we raise up these hidden, lost parts of ourselves. Every meal we eat provides lost sparks of our souls, and if we eat in a holy and properly-intentioned way we raise up those sparks in the food itself.
We raise up sparks in our reincarnations. We ARE those sparks of our previous incarnations, and we raise up sparks by being here and now in our current life. Just by being present, here and now, we are automatically going to connect with sparks in our lives.
We raise up sparks by being in a state of receptivity, and receiving whatever G-d sends to us. Realizing it’s from G-d is what will raise up those sparks. We raise us sparks by understanding that nothing is coincidental, and everything is divine guidance, including the people the people in our lives who are there to supply us with something we lack, but something they have.
We raise up sparks in our relationships, including male/female and other relationships. The depth of our connection with others is the depth of the sparks we can raise up.
We raise up sparks by coming into the land of Israel. We are the sparks returning home, just as we will be caught up one day to return to our divine home. We are the exiles, wherever we are, and we’re there in order to raise up the trapped sparks, wherever they may be. The sparks of Torah, of potential converts, of divine information and energy – these are all put into our lives to be raised up as well.
We’re here as a legacy, to raise up the sparks that fell from Adam & Eve’s fall in Paradise. We’re here to raise up sparks, and when they’re all raised up it will be the Messianic Age. When we are beckoning to another person to fill us up with their life force, which we don’t have, that’s an interaction of sparks, too. Even in suffering, even in the holocaust, even in the lowest of places, Rabbi Kalonymus Kalman Shapira taught us that in that suffering and in those worst situations there are Holy Sparks to be raised up inside the pain itself.
When we have clarity of an unclarified situation and we are learning, we raise up lost sparks in those situations. We raise up sparks by seeing that all the highlights of our lives are basically sacred text; they are the texts of G-d’s book that he’s writing, with each of us as the central character of our own story. We need to interpret that text and understand it, because that’s how we come to home the holy, pristine, divinely providential place where we’re meant to be.
TREE OF LIFE MEDITATIONS – LIFE APPLICATIONS OF THE ‘AITZ CHAIM’ –THE ARIZAL’S CLASSIC KABBALISTIC WORK – Part 1
The following meditations represent a lifetime collection of ‘Pnimiyut’ (spiritual life applications), which are translations of the otherwise very technical Creation Principles comprising the important Kabbalistic Classic—the Eitz Chaim—the Tree of Life.
These translations are in the form of meditations in order to best internalize and be impacted by them. This is the first of several posts with Creation Principle meditations.
- GIGULIM\ CIRCULAR PROVIDENCE INTERTWINED WITH YOSHER \ LINEAR PROVIDENCE
Know that you have access to G-d in a transcendent and in an immanent fashion. Experience G-d’s transcendence, His Infinite Presence being beyond your fathoming, beyond any limitations at all, while at the same time, experience G-d’s immanence, His intimate presence inside of you, nurturing you, loving you, guiding you, knowing you better than anyone in your life.
Know that in order for you to grow into becoming the best person that you can become, you need two seemingly contradictory approaches to life. First, draw down into yourself a certainty and a clarity that all is now perfect as is along with a knowing that nothing is perfect and you have the responsibility to improve and perfect everything that comes your way.
- THE PARRALEL INNER AND OUTER LIGHTS OF ADAM KADMON \ PRIMORDIAL MAN
Know that your life is a blend of information you’re aware of, knowledge that’s accessible to you and also knowledge that’s beyond you. The way you grow spiritually is to draw down into yourself that which is beyond you.
This is called, “the outer lights,” or sometimes it’s called, “the surrounding light.”
Focus on what you know, in your life. Focus on it in conversation, in learning, in facing challenges. In any aspect of life, identify that which is known to you and that which is not known to you.
And make it a point to try and grow in your spirituality by stepping up into the world of the outer lights, the great world of the unknown. And ask G-d to send you the information, and wisdom and the knowing that it will take to fathom and to become familiar with that which is beyond you in life.
You’ll find that the very question itself, and the very request itself, when done earnestly, will bring the response, the answers, and the ability to fathom that which is beyond you.
- AKUDIM \ THE PRIMORDIAL BANDED PHASE OF THE CREATION PROCESS
Know that there is a future consciousness, a world of reward, where there will be reflected to us the reward of all we have done well in our lives. In that reward world, we will see how all of the wonderful things we accomplished, and the choices we have made result in their power. We will see their power ad infinitum, forever.
Step into that world right now. Experience how there is a result, there is a birthing of all the good things you think, feel, think and do. Step into the other side of your choices and your actions. Set that as a primary focus in all that you do, and you’ll find it all becomes primordially potent and effective.
- MATEI AND LO MATEI \ THE ‘TOUCHING AND NOT TOUCHING’ PRIMORDIAL CREATION PHASE
Know that ladder leading from one world into the other world is a ladder that cannot be climbed head on, or directly. It must be climbed as the angels approached infinity in the prophetic visions we learn.
We must connect to that which is higher to us, by taking a step forward, touching it, then taking a step back and not touching it. Then we repeat it… stepping forward and touching it, then stepping back and not touching it.
Experience reaching out for that which is beyond you this way. But when you reach out for that which is beyond you, touch and grasp and engage and encounter and embrace that unknown area for just a short moment. Then stop and come back to where your base line is located.
Consider how it felt to extend yourself, and when you feel ready, go back and touch it again.
You’ll notice the more often you go forward and touch, and then stop and go back again, the more you’ll be ready to step into the new reality.
- THE WORLD OF NEKUDIM \ POINTS
Know that the world, before it was in a state of Tikkun, or Rectification, was in a state of Tohu, or Chaos. The main reason for that is because the light, the influence of life, was so incredibly powerful that the vessels could not properly contain them. Know that in a future time we will re-engage these primordial lights in such a powerful way that we will be able to harness the most powerful energy, which today would be considered animalistic or criminal.
At that time in the future we will have the ability and the capability to contain them and to hold them.
Step into that future time, and experience a more powerful light force than you have ever experienced before. And visualize your ability to contain that, and to harness that and to hold that, and to step into a whole new levels of inner, positive, beneficial power.
- SHVIRA \BREAKDOWN AND TIKUN \ RECTIFICATION
One of the keys to rectification of all that is broken is to build a proper foundation. It’s to have a vessel that can contain whatever light or life force is being directed at it. One to of the ways to accomplish this is by using teamwork. Two heads are better than one, and three are better than two.
So, step into a community. And search out the strengths of each individual member of the community, and unite the community by sharing that particular strength that nobody else has, and pool those strengths into some kind of single-minded directive or goal that can only be accomplished by a group, instead of one person alone.
- THE DIVINE NAMES –‘MAH’ AND ‘BEN’
Know that in the world as we know it now, in its march towards perfection and rectification, one person can be an influencer, a healer, a rectifier, and another person will be the influenced, the healed and the rectified.
Step into a reality where you completely accept, with full peace of mind, that relative to any particular person in your life, you are the one to be influenced by that person. While you will be, relative to a different person, the influencer.
When you accept and embrace this dynamic, then life becomes very rich and full and effective.
- THE DOUBTS OF THE UNKNOWN HEAD
Know that the core of reality is the understanding that we don’t understand. It’s the knowing that we don’t know. It’s the mystery.
Accept the fact that the deepest levels of your processing of life, and of your knowledge, is a mystery. And have the humility to accept that, as much as you know, there’s much more that you don’t know. That very humility will draw down an incredible amount of knowledge to you, which you wouldn’t otherwise be able to access.
- SEFIROT VS. PARTZUFIM \ PERSONAS
Know that we all have certain traits which dominate our personalities. One person might have the character trait of transcendence. Another person might be an enabler or empowerer.
But know that on a deeper level we are holistic beings. We are personas, containing all of the Sefirot. Engage and empower and enliven all of the traits of your personality, until they are all shining as powerfully as possible.
- ATIK – THE ANCIENT OF DAYS
Know that the highest of the Sefirot is the bridge between that which is above and beyond, and that which is within time and space.
When you step up to be a person with the ability to remove yourself from your own, natural limitations, you step up into the place which is beyond.
The way you do that is to leap straight into it.