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    Kabbalah: for or against? – Ask the Rabbi

    Q. Are you in favour of Kabbalah?

    A. Kabbalah (literally “tradition”) is the metaphysical aspect of Judaism. Those who prefer a rationalist approach find it difficult. The kabbalists themselves make a distinction between sit’rei kabbalah, “the secrets of kabbalah“, and ta’amei kabbalah, “the principles of kabbalah“.

    The secrets are for those who are immersed in kabbalistic literature and are spiritually and emotionally mature enough to transcend time and space and to enter the mystical realms.

    The principles are accessible to all who are capable of spiritual development. These principles provide an underpinning for the rules and regulations which some people mistakenly believe are all that there is in Judaism. For such people it is a revelation to find and focus on light, love, energy, goodness and spirituality and to become able to rise above the banal and mundane – even to rise above oneself.

    The principles of kabbalah create awareness of the inner meaning of the commandments and the balance between heart, mind and soul.

    Today, when so many are searching for spirituality, there is a new interest in kabbalah and a thriving market for user-friendly introductions to kabbalistic classics. We all have to decide whether this is for us.

    For myself, the principles of kabbalah are helpful in finding the meaning of life and the purpose of Judaism. I am not adept at the secrets of kabbalah, but I know that others are.

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