Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Kabbalah (קבלה "Reception", Standard Hebrew Qabbala, Tiberian Hebrew Qabbālāh; also written variously as Cabala, Cabalah, Cabbala, Cabbalah, Kabala, Kabalah, Kabbala, Qabala, Qabalah) is a religious philosophical system claiming an insight into divine nature.
"Kabbalah" is a doctrine of esoteric knowledge concerning God and the universe, asserted to have come down as a revelation to elect saints from a remote past, and preserved only by a privileged few. Kabbalah is considered part of the Jewish Oral Law. It is the traditional mystical understanding of the Torah. Kabbalah stresses the reasons and understanding of the commandments, and the cause of events described in the Torah. Kabbalah includes the understanding of the spiritual spheres in creation, and the rules and ways by which God administers the existence of the universe.
Origin of Jewish mysticism
Early forms of Jewish mysticism at first consisted only of empirical lore. Much later, under the influence of Neoplatonic and Neopythagorean philosophy, it assumed a speculative character. In the medieval era it greatly developed with the appearance of the mystical text, the Sefer Yetzirah. Jewish sources attribute the book to Abraham. It became the object of the systematic study of the elect, called "baale ha-kabbalah" (בעלי הקבלה "possessors or masters of the Kabbalah"). From the thirteenth century onward Kabbalah branched out into an extensive literature, alongside of and often in opposition to the Talmud.
Some historians of religion hold that we should limit the use of the term Kabbalah only to the mystical religious systems which appeared after the twelfth century; they use other terms to refer to esoteric Jewish mystical systems before the 12th century. Other historians of religion view this distinction as arbitrary. In this view, post 12th-century Kabbalah is seen as the next phase in a continuous line of development from the same mystical roots and elements. As such, these scholars feel that it is appropriate to use the term "Kabbalah" to refer to Jewish mysticism as early as the first century of the common era. Orthodox Jews typically disagree with both schools of thought, as they reject the idea that Kabbalah underwent significant historical development and change.
Since the late 19th century, with the emergence of the "Jewish Studies" approach, the Kabbalah has also been studied as a highly rational system of understanding the world, rather than a mystical one. A pioneer of this approach was Lazar Gulkowitsch.
Antiquity of esoteric mysticism
Early forms of esoteric mysticism existed over 2,000 years ago. Ben Sira warns against it, saying: "You shall have no business with secret things" (Sirach iii. 22; compare Talmud Hagigah 13a; Midrash Genesis Rabbah viii.).
Apocalyptic literature belonging to the second and first pre-Christian centuries contained some elements of later Kabbalah, and as, according to Josephus, such writings were in the possession of the Essenes, and were jealously guarded by them against disclosure, for which they claimed a hoary antiquity (see Philo, "De Vita Contemplativa," iii., and Hippolytus, "Refutation of all Heresies," ix. 27).
That many such books containing secret lore were kept hidden away by the "enlightened" is stated in IV Esdras xiv. 45-46, where Pseudo-Ezra is told to publish the twenty-four books of the canon openly that the worthy and the unworthy may alike read, but to keep the seventy other books hidden in order to "deliver them only to such as be wise" (compare Dan. xii. 10); for in them are the spring of understanding, the fountain of wisdom, and the stream of knowledge.
Instructive for the study of the development of Kabbalah is the Book of Jubilees written under King John Hyrcanus. It refers to the writings of Jared, Cainan, and Noah, and presents Abraham as the renewer, and Levi as the permanent guardian, of these ancient writings. It offers a cosmogony based upon the twenty-two letters of the Hebrew alphabet, and connected with Jewish chronology and Messianology, while at the same time insisting upon the heptad as the holy number rather than upon the decadic system adopted by the later haggadists and the "Sefer Yetzirah". The Pythagorean idea of the creative powers of numbers and letters, upon which the "Sefer Yetzirah" is founded, and which was known in the time of the Mishnah (before 200 CE)..
One of the first books on Kabbalah is the Sefer Yetzirah, Book of Creation. The first commentaries on this small book were written in the 10th century, and the text itself is quoted as early as the sixth century. Its historical origins are unclear. It exists today in a number of recensions, up to 2500 words long. Like many Jewish mystical texts, it was written in such a way as to be meaningless to those who read it without an extensive background in the Tanakh (Hebrew Bible) and Midrash.
Another early book of Kabbalah is the Bahir ("illumination"), also known as The Midrash of Rabbi Nehuniah ben haKana. It is some 12,000 words long. First published in Provence in 1176, many Orthodox Jews believe that the author was Rabbi Nehuniah ben haKana, a Talmudic sage of the first century. Historians, however, believe that the book was likely written not long before it was published.
The most important work of Jewish mysticism is the Zohar (זהר "Splendor"). It is an esoteric mystical commentary on the Torah, written in Aramaic. In the 13th century, a Spanish Jew by the name of Moses de Leon claimed to discover the text of the Zohar, attributing it to the 2nd century Rabbi Shimon bar Yohai. This book was subsequently published throughout the Jewish community. Though the book was widely accepted, over the subsequent centuries a small number of significant Rabbis published works espousing the view that it was a forgery, and that it contained concepts contrary to Judaism. Gershom Scholem (the most famous scholar and historian of Kabbalah in the twentieth century), echoing many of the arguments of these Rabbis, contends that de Leon himself was the author of the Zohar. The Zohar contains and elaborates upon much of the material found in Sefer Yetzirah and Bahir, and is considered the Kabbalistic work par excellence.
Gnosticism and Kabbalah
Gnostic literature testifies to the antiquity of the Kabbalah. Gnosticism - systems of secret spiritual knowledge, or some sources say - — that is, the cabalistic "Chochmah" (חכמה "wisdom") - seems to have been the first attempt on the part of Jewish sages to give the empirical mystic lore, with the help of Platonic and Pythagorean or Stoic ideas, a speculative turn. This led to the danger of heresy from which the Jewish rabbinic figures Akiva and Ben Zoma strove to extricate themselves.
Original teachings of gnosticism have much in common with Kabbalah:
- Core terminology of classical gnostics was Jewish names of God.
- Mainstream Gnostics accepted Jewish Mashiah as key figure of gnosticism
- Key text of Gnosticism - Apocryphon of John - mentions 365 powers who created the World. The same is a number of dark powers among 613 powers of the soul in Judaism & Kabbalah.
Theodicy: explanation for the existence of evil
Kabbalistic works offer a theodicy, a philosophical reconciliation of how the existence of a good and powerful God is compatible with the existence of evil in the world. There are mainly two different ways to describe why there is evil in the world, according to the Kabbalah. Both makes use of the kabbalistic Tree of Life:
- The kabbalistic tree, which consists of ten Sephiroth, the ten "emanations" of God, consists of three pillars. The left side of the tree, the female side, is considered to be more destructive than the right side, the male side. Geburah (גבורה), for example, stands for strength and discipline, while her male counterpart, Chesed (חסד), stands for love and mercy. The center pillar of the tree does not have any polarity, and no gender is given to them.
- In the medieval era, old ideas from Babylon gained new strength. The Qliphoth, or Kelippot(קליפות the primeval "husks" of impurity), was blamed for all the evil in the world. Qliphoth are the evil twin of the Sephiroth. The tree of Qliphoth is usually called the kabbalistic Tree of Death , and sometimes the Qliphoth are called the Deathangels, or Angels of Death. The Qliphoth are found in the old Babylonian incantations, a fact used as evidence in favor of the antiquity of most of the kabbalistic material.
Mystic Doctrines in Talmudic Times
In Talmudic times the terms "Ma'aseh Bereshit" (Works of Creation) and "Ma'aseh Merkabah" (Works of the Divine Throne/Chariot) clearly indicate the Midrashic nature of these speculations; they are really based upon Gen. i. and Ezek. i. 4-28; while the names "Sitre Torah" (Talmud Hag. 13a) and "Raze Torah" (Ab. vi. 1) indicate their character as secret lore. In contrast to the explicit statement of Scripture that God created not only the world, but also the matter out of which it was made, the opinion is expressed in very early times that God created the world from matter He found ready at hand — an opinion probably due to the influence of the Platonic-Stoic cosmogony.
Eminent Palestinian rabbinic teachers hold the doctrine of the preexistence of matter (Midrash Genesis Rabbah i. 5, iv. 6), in spite of the protest of Gamaliel II. (ib. i. 9).
In dwelling upon the nature of God and the universe, the mystics of the Talmudic period asserted, in contrast to Biblical transcendentalism, that "God is the dwelling-place of the universe; but the universe is not the dwelling-place of God". Possibly the designation ("place") for God, so frequently found in Talmudic-Midrashic literature, is due to this conception, just as Philo, in commenting on Gen. xxviii. 11 says, "God is called 'ha makom' (המקום "the place") because God encloses the universe, but is Himself not enclosed by anything" ("De Somniis," i. 11).
Baruch Spinoza may have had this passage in mind when he said that the ancient Jews did not separate God from the world. This conception of God may be pantheistic or panentheistic. It also postulates the union of man with God; both these ideas were further developed in the later Kabbalah.
Even in very early times Palestinian as well as Alexandrian theology recognized the two attributes of God, "middat hadin," the attribute of justice, and "middat ha-rahamim," the attribute of mercy (Midrash Sifre, Deut. 27); and so is the contrast between justice and mercy a fundamental doctrine of the Cabala. Other hypostasizations are represented by the ten agencies through which God created the world; namely, wisdom, insight, cognition, strength, power, inexorableness, justice, right, love, and mercy. While the Sefirot are based on these ten creative potentialities, it is especially the personification of wisdom which, in Philo, represents the totality of these primal ideas; and the Targ. Yer. i., agreeing with him, translates the first verse of the Bible as follows: "By wisdom God created the heaven and the earth."
So, also, the figure of Metatron passed into Kabbalah from the Talmud, where it played the role of the demiurgos (see Gnosticism), being expressly mentioned as God. Mention may also be made of the seven preexisting things enumerated in an old Baraita; namely, the Torah, repentance, paradise and hell, the throne of God, the Heavenly Temple, and the name of the Messiah (Talmud Pes. 54a). Although the origin of this doctrine must be sought probably in certain mythological ideas, the Platonic doctrine of preexistence has modified the older, simpler conception, and the preexistence of the seven must therefore be understood as an "ideal" preexistence, a conception that was later more fully developed in the Kabbalah.
The attempts of the mystics to bridge the gulf between God and the world are evident in the doctrine of the preexistence of the soul, and of its close relation to God before it enters the human body — a doctrine taught by the Hellenistic sages (Wisdom viii. 19) as well as by the Palestinian rabbis.
Kabbalistic understanding of God
Kabbalah (Jewish mysticism) teaches that God is neither matter nor spirit. Rather God is the creator of both, but is himself neither. But if God is so different than his creation, how can there be any interaction between the Creator and the created? This question prompted Kabbalists to envision two aspects of God, (a) God himself, who in the end is unknowable, and (b) the revealed aspect of God who created the universe, preserves the universe, and interacts with mankind. Kabbalists believe that these two aspects are not contradictory but complement one another. See Divine simplicity; Tzimtzum.
Some Kabbalistic Jews, such as Moses ben Jacob Cordovero and Lubavitch (Chabad) Hasidism, hold that the first aspect of God is all that there really exists; all else is an illusion. Depending on how this is explained, such a view can result in panentheism, or pantheism. However, most other Jews who believe in Kabbalah hold that there is an aspect of God that is revealed to the world.
Kabbalists speak of the first aspect of God as "Ein Sof" (אין סוף); this is translated as "the infinite", "endless", or "that which has no limits". In this view, nothing can be said about this aspect of God. This aspect of God is impersonal. Kabbalists speak of the second aspect of God as being seen by the universe as ten emanations from God; these emanations are called sefirot. See also Kabbalistic use of the Tetragrammaton.
The sefirot mediate the interaction of the ultimate unknowable God with the physical and spiritual world. Some explain the sefirot as stages of the creative process whereby God, from His own infinite being, created the progression of realms which culminated in our finite and physical universe. Others suggest that the sefirot may be thought of as analogous to the fundamental laws of physics. Just as gravity, electro-magnetism, the strong nuclear force, and the weak nuclear force allow for interactions between matter and energy, the ten sefirot allow for interaction between God and the Universe.
The Kabbalah's idea of emanations can be compared to the distinction made by fourteenth century Christian theologian Gregory Palamas. Palamas drew a distinction between God's essence and energies, affirming that God was unknowable in His essence, but knowable in His energies. Palamas never enumerated God's energies, but described them as ways that God could act in the Universe, and particularly on people, from the light shining from the face of Moses after Moses descended Mt. Sinai, to the light surrounding Moses, Elijah and Jesus Christ on Mt. Tabor during the transfiguration of Jesus. For Palamas, God's energies were not some other thing separate from God, but were God; however the idea of energies was kept distinct from the idea of the three persons of the Trinity.
The human soul in Kabbalah
The Zohar posits that the human soul has three elements, the nefesh, ru'ach, and neshamah. The nefesh is found in all humans, and enters the physical body at birth. It is the source of one's physical and psychological nature. The next two parts of the soul are not implanted at birth, but can be developed over time; their development depends on the actions and beliefs of the individual. They are said to only fully exist in people awakened spiritually. A common way of explaining the three parts of the soul is as follows:
- Nefesh (נפש) - the lower part, or animal part, of the soul. Is linked to instincts and bodily cravings.
- Ruach (רוח) - the middle soul, the spirit. It contains the moral virtues and the ability to distinguish between good and evil.
- Neshamah (נשמה) - the higher soul, or super-soul. This separates man from all other lifeforms. It is related to the intellect, and allows man to enjoy and benefit from the afterlife. This part of the soul is provided both to Jew and non-Jew alike at birth. It allows one to have some awareness of the existence and presence of God.
The Raaya Meheimna , a later addition to the Zohar by an unknown author, posits that there are two more parts of the human soul, the chayyah and yehidah. Gershom Scholem writes that these "were considered to represent the sublimest levels of intuitive cognition, and to be within the grasp of only a few chosen individuals".
- Chayyah (חיה) - The part of the soul that allows one to have an awareness of the divine life force itself.
- Yehidah (יחידה) - the highest plane of the soul, in which one can achieve as full a union with God as is possible.
Both Rabbinic and kabbalistic works posit that there are also a few additional, non-permanent states to the soul that people can develop on certain occasions. These extra souls, or extra states of the soul, play no part in any afterlife scheme, but are mentioned for completeness.
- Ruach HaKodesh (רוח הקודש) - a state of the soul that makes prophecy possible. Since the age of classical prophecy passed, no one receives the soul of prophesy any longer.
- Neshamah Yeseira - The supplemental soul that a Jew experience on Shabbat. It makes possible an enhanced spiritual enjoyment of the day. This exists only when one is observing Shabbat; it can be lost and gained depending on one's observance.
- Neshamah Kedosha - Provided to Jews at the age of maturity (13 for boys, 12 for girls), and is related to the study and fulfillment of the Torah commandments. It exists only when one studies and follows Torah; it can be lost and gained depending on one's study and observance.
Foretelling the future
A small number of Kabbalists have attempted to foretell events by the Kabbalah. The term has come to be used to refer to secret science in general; mystic art; or mystery.
Following that, the word cabal came to refer to any small, secretive and possibly conspiratorial group.
The Midrash and Talmud are replete with the use of Divine names and incantations that are claimed to effect supernatural or metaphysical results. Most post-Talmudic rabbinical literature disapproves of the use of any or most of these formulae, termed Kabbalah Ma'asith ("Practical Kabbalah"). There are various arguments; one stated by the Medieval Rabbi Jacob Mölin (Maharil) is that the person using it may lack the required grounding, and the spell would be ineffective, leading to a de facto deminuition of belief in the power of these statements.
One of the most serious and sustained criticisms of Kabbalah is that it may lead away from monotheism, and instead promote dualism, the belief that there is a supernatural counterpart to God. The dualistic system of good and of evil powers, which goes back to Zoroastrianism, can be traced through Gnosticism; having influenced the cosmology of the ancient Kabbalah before it reached the medieval one.
- Some early mystics believed in a heavenly being called Metatron, a lesser Adonai "God", that worked in concert with the greater Adonai. While this essentially Gnostic belief was never a mainstream trend within Jewish thought, some Kabbalists accepted it.
- Later Kabbalistic works, including the Zohar, appear to more strongly affirmed dualism, as they ascribe all evil to a supernatural force known as the Sitra Ahra ("the other side".) "The dualistic tendency is, perhaps, most marked in the Kabbalistic treatment of the problem of evil. The profound sense of the reality of evil brought many Kabbalists to posit a realm of the demonic, the Sitra Ahra, a kind of negative mirror image of the "side of holiness" with which it was locked in combat." [Encyclopaedia Judaica, Volume 6, "Dualism", p.244]. However the Zohar indicates that the Sitra Ahra has no power over God, and only exists as a creation of God to give man free choice.
- According to Kabbalists, no person can understand the true, unknown nature of God. Rather, there is God that makes Himself known to man, and a hidden Ein Sof that is totally removed from man's experience. One can have a reading of this theology which is totally monotheistic; however one can also have a reading of this theology which is essentially dualistic. Professor Gershom Scholem writes "It is clear that with this postulate of an impersonal basic reality in God, which becomes a person - or appears as a person - only in the process of Creation and Revelation, Kabbalism abandons the personalistic basis of the Biblical conception of God....It will not surprise us to find that speculation has run the whole gamut - from attempts to re-transform the impersonal En-Sof into the personal God of the Bible to the downright heretical doctrine of a genuine dualism between the hidden Ein Sof and the personal Demiurge of Scripture." ("Major Trends in Jewish Mysticism" Shocken Books p.11-12)
Most forms of Kabbalah teach that the Sefirot are not distinct from the Ein-Sof, but are somehow within it. The idea that there are ten divine sefirot could evolve over time into the idea that "God is One being, yet in that One being there are Ten". This would be similar to the Christian belief in the Trinity, which states that while God is One, in that One there are three persons. This interpretation of Kabbalah in fact did occur among some European Jews in the 17th century.
Rabbi Leon Modena, a 17th century Venetian critic of kabbalah, wrote that if we were to accept the Kabbalah, then the Christian trinity would indeed be compatible with Judaism, as the Trinity closely resembles the Kabbalistic doctrine of sefirot. This critique was in response to the fact that some Jews went so far as to address individual sefirot individually in some of their prayers.
Kabbalah had many other opponents, notably Rabbi Yitzchak ben Sheshet Perfet (The Rivash); he stated that Kabbalah was "worse than Christianity", as it made God into 10, not just into three. The critique, however, is considered untenable. Most followers of Kabbalah never believed this interpretation of Kabbalah. The Christian Trinity concept posits that there are three persons existing within the Godhead, one of whom literally became a human being. In contrast, the mainstream understanding of the Kabbalistic sefirot holds that they have no mind or intelligence; further, they are not addressed in prayer, and they can not become a human being. They are conduits for interaction - not persons or beings.
Kabbalah in Judaism
Although it was criticized by a small number of Rabbis, Kabbalah has nevertheless been a fundamental part of most Jewish theology for many centuries, and is particularly influential in Hasidic and Sephardic thought. As well, the Vilna Gaon, the greatest leader of the Mitnagdim - opponents of the Hasidim - was also a major Kabbalist. Gershom Scholem has written that between 1500 and 1800 "Kabbalah was widely considered to be the true Jewish theology". Though many Modern Orthodox Jews do not ascribe to Kabbalah, most other Orthodox Jews still consider it a fundamental part of Jewish thought and belief
Kabbalah tended to be rejected by most Jews in the Conservative and Reform movements, though its influences were not completely eliminated. While it was generally not studied as a discipline, the Kabbalistic Kabbalat Shabbat service remained part of the Conservative liturgy, as did the Yedid Nefesh prayer. Nevertheless, in the 1960s, Rabbi Saul Lieberman of the Jewish Theological Seminary, is reputed to have introduced a lecture by Scholem on Kabbalah with a statement that Kabbalah itself was nonsense, but the academic study of Kabbalah was scholarship. This view became popular among many Jews, who viewed the subject as worthy of study, but who did not accept Kabbalah as teaching literal truths.
According to Rabbi Bradley Shavit Artson (Dean of the Conservative Ziegler School of Rabbinical Studies in the University of Judaism), "many western Jews insisted that their future and their freedom required shedding what they perceived as parochial orientalism. They fashioned a Judaism that was decorous and strictly rational (according to 19th-century European standards), denigrating Kabbalah as backward, superstitious, and marginal".
However, in the late 20th and early 21st centuries there has been a revival in interest in Kabbalah in Conservative Judaism. The Kabbalistic 12th century prayer Ani'im Zemirot was restored to the new Conservative Sim Shalom siddur, as was the B'rikh Shmeh passage from the Zohar, and the mystical Ushpizin service welcoming to the Sukkah the spirits of Jewish forbearers. All Conservative Rabbinical seminaries now teach several courses in Kabbalah, and the Ziegler School of Rabbinical Studies in Los Angeles has a fulltime instructor in Kabbalah and Hasidut. According to Artson "Ours is an age hungry for meaning, for a sense of belonging, for holiness. In that search, we have returned to the very Kabbalah our predecessors scorned. The stone that the builders rejected has become the head cornerstone (Psalm 118:22)... Kabbalah was the last universal theology adopted by the entire Jewish people, hence faithfulness to our commitment to positive-historical Judaism mandates a reverent receptivity to Kabbalah".
Kabbalah in non-Jewish society
Kabbalah eventually gained an audience outside of the Jewish community. Christian versions of Kabbalah began to develop; by the early 18th century some kabbalah came to be used by some hermetic philosophers, neo-pagans and other new religious groups.
The Western Esoteric (or Hermetic) Tradition, a precursor to both the neo-Pagan and New Age movements, is intertwined with aspects of Kabbalah. Within the Hermetic tradition, much of Kabbalah has been changed from its Jewish roots through syncretism, but core Kabbalistic beliefs are still recognizably present.
"Hermetic" Kabbalah, as it is sometimes called, probably reached its peak in the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, a 19th-century organization that was arguably the pinnacle of ceremonial magic (or, depending upon one's position, its ultimate descent into decadence). Within the Golden Dawn, Kabbalistic principles such as the ten Sephiroth were fused with Greek and Egyptian deities, the Enochian system of angelic magic of John Dee, and certain Eastern (particularly Hindu and Buddhist) concepts within the structure of a Masonic- or Rosicrucian-style esoteric order. Many of the Golden Dawn's rituals were exposed by the legendary occultist Aleister Crowley and were eventually compiled into book form by Israel Regardie, an author of some note. The credibility of Crowley is inconsistent at best though, as many of the rituals "exposed" were actually manipulated versions.
Crowley made his mark on the use of Kabbalah with several of his writings; of these, perhaps the most illustrative is Liber 777. This book is quite simply a set of tables relating various parts of ceremonial magic and Eastern and Western religion to thirty-two numbers representing the ten spheres and twenty-two paths of the Kabbalistic Tree of Life. The attitude of syncretism displayed by Hermetic Kabbalists is plainly evident here, as one may simply check the table to see that Chesed (חסד "Mercy") corresponds to Jupiter, Isis, the color blue (on the Queen Scale), Poseidon, Brahma, and amethysts--none of which, certainly, the original Jewish Kabbalists had in mind!
However popular within certain sects, Crowley is not without many critics. Dion Fortune, a fellow initiate of the Golden Dawn, disagreed with Crowley, and her work The Mystical Qabalah implicitly states this. Elphas Levi's works such as Transcendental Magic, heavily steeped in esoteric Kabbalah (rendering it very difficult to understand correctly; it is completely misunderstood by critics), agrees. Samael Aun Weor has many significant works that discuss Kabbalah within many religions usually considered unrelated to Kabbalah, such as the Egyptian, Pagan, and Central American religions, which is summarized in his work The Initiatic Path in the Arcana of Tarot and Kabbalah.
A recent modern revival has been initiated by the controversial Kabbalah Center founded by Philip Berg in Los Angeles in 1984, and run by him and his sons Yehuda and Michael. With a number of branches worldwide, the group has attracted many non-Jews, including entertainment celebrities such as Demi Moore, Madonna, Mick Jagger and Britney Spears. Reactions from organized Jewish groups have been almost uniformly negative.
- Isaac Luria
- Chaim Vital
- Yosef Karo
- Moses ben Jacob Cordovero
- List of Messiah claimants
- Sabbetai Zvi
- Yehuda Ashlag
- Elijah ben Solomon
==Footnotes==Artson, Bradley Shavit, Fromt the Periphery to the Centre: Kabbalah and the Conservative Movement, United Synagogue Review, Spring 2005, Vol. 57 No. 2
- Aivanhov, Omraam Mikhael THE FRUITS OF THE TREE OF LIFE (The kabbalistic Tradition), ISBN 2-85566-467-5
- Kaplan, Aryeh Inner Space: Introduction to Kabbalah, Meditation and Prophecy. Moznaim Publishing Corp 1990.
- Scholem, Gershom, Kabbalah, Jewish Publication Society.
- Wineberg, Yosef. Lessons in Tanya: The Tanya of R. Shneur Zalman of Liadi (5 volume set). Merkos L'Inyonei Chinuch, 1998. ISBN 082660546X
- The Wisdom of The Zohar: An Anthology of Texts, 3 volume set, Ed. Isaiah Tishby, translated from the Hebrew by David Goldstein, The Littman Library.
External links and references
- Overview of Kabbalah
- FAQ about Kabbalah
- Kabbalah 101
- What Kabbalah Is & What Kabbalah Is Not
- Extensive survey on both Hebrew and Hermetic Kabbalah
- Gnostic Kabbalah - The Mysteries of Daath
- Psyche.com: 1,000 Qabala Links
- The Interactive Qabala
- Initiatic Kabbalah in modern Gnosis
- Kabbalah news archive
- The Qabalta: The Nazorean Qabbalah
- Practical Kabbalah for personal and spiritual development
- True Kabbalah (Chabad Lubavitch)
- Kosher kabbalah of Safed masters
- Important original texts in English
- Chassidic Kabbalah
- Kabbalah Center Official Website
- Ashlagian tradition of Rabbi Laitman
- New Lithuanian Kabbalah School of Vilna Gaon
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