Dear George,

Thank you for your beautiful interpretation of B'reshit (Book of
Genesis).

By your description, I have the feeling that you think about Sefirotic
Kabbalah. Briefly, Sefirotic Kabbalah believes that God emanated in 10
Sefirot (the meaning of the word is unclear, the root "Seper" is
related to the words "letter", "number" and "speech"). This 10 Sefirot
are attributes of the divine that need to be in a harmonious
relationship with each other in order to pour the divine influx over
the world. This school of kabbalists believed that they could
influence the Sefirot and in this way exert changes in the divine and
human realms, basically making sure that the divine influx continued
pouring and sustaining the world. For this reason Sefirotic Kabbalah
is also described as Theurgical Kabbalah.

The kabbalist I have been talking about, Abraham Abulafia, created a
different school. Deeply influenced by Maimonides philosophy (who, in
turn, adapted Jewish beliefs to harmonize with Aristotelian
philosophy) Abulafia practiced a form of Kabbalah aimed at the union
with the divine intellect. To put it in radical terms, his Kabbalah
was not about influencing God's divine emanations but to become (part
of) God.

I think your insight into consciousness is very thought-provoking.
>From the whole Creation, nothing makes me feel greater wonder than
consciousness. The union with the divine intellect (prophecy) could be
probably described as a higher state of consciousness. What is
surprising about Abulafia is that he did not reach this state by
suppressing his conscious mind, as most mystics do by repetition of a
single formula/mantra, but by overstimulating it with letter
combinations accompanied by body motions.

I haven't thought enough how the technique of letter combinations
could be related to consciousness. Any ideas?

Shabbat Shalom,

R. Rabbit

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