I love opinionated non-PC people. This blog is to vent my opinions on life, the universe and everything. Which is 42 which in gematria is "My Heart" (LBY) according to Rabbi Abulafia. The Divine Heart is the centre of everything.
Friday, September 16, 2005
Adoration of the Heart
A Hebrew Catholic Way
“What is His Heart?” asks the ancient Jewish mystical Book of Bahir in the 63rd section. The reply, “He said: Mother thus Ben Zoma is outside, and you are with him.” This seems a strange reply to make to this question but it has deep spiritual significance. Above this passage in ‘Bahir’ 62 this Heart is called “The Heart of the Blessed Holy One” and is referred to as a ‘field’ (sadeh) and ‘carriage’ (sidah) and is linked to the ‘Beloved’ of the Song of Songs. “His Heart said to the Blessed Holy One, Come my Beloved…”. Here we see this Heart speaks to the Blessed Holy One. This is a Mystery (sod). Who is this Mother and why is she connected to the Heart of the Blessed Holy One? Who is speaking to the Mother? Why is Ben Zoma the famous 2nd century Rabbi with her?
Bahir 63 explains that the Heart (Lev/Leb) is numerically 32. The Hebrew letter Lamed is 30 and the Hebrew letter Beth is 2. “These are the 32 paths”. These 32 paths within the Heart of the Blessed Holy One are “concealed and with them the world was created”. Thus this Divine Heart created the World. According to the ‘Bahir’ the Divine King’s Heart is revealed through the Daughter, who is called the King’s Mother and Sister. It is through the Heavenly Mother that one can see the Heart of the Blessed Holy One.
“This is like a king who was in the innermost of many chambers. The number of such chambers was 32, and to each one there was a path. Should the king then bring everyone to his chamber through the paths? You will agree that he should not. Should he reveal his jewels, his tapestries, his hidden and concealed secrets? You will again agree that he should not. What then does he do? He touches the Daughter, and includes all the paths in her and in her garments. One who wants to go inside should gaze there…because of his love for her sometimes he calls her ‘my sister’…sometimes he calls her his daughter…And sometimes he calls her ‘my mother’.” (Bahir 63 translated by Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan). The King here is God himself and the Mother, referred to in regards to Ben Zoma, is the Mother of the King or the Mother of God. Here it is clearly revealed that one does not directly gaze at God but one must gaze upon the Mother as a mirror of the Divine Heart.
In Jewish tradition YHVH is often referred to as the Blessed Holy One and in the mystical tradition the Blessed Holy One is known as the Personification of Zer Anpin also called the Son (Ben). The Heart is also considered to be the personification of Imma (Mother) which is closely linked with the Attribute of Understanding (Binah). In the Talmud it says “the heart understands”. From the womb of Imma (Mother) comes the Son (Zer Anpin).° This union of Imma-Mother and the Son –Zer Anpin is called in the Jewish mystical tradition the ‘Concept of the Heart’. Catholics call this ‘two hearts that beat as one’ or ‘the alliance of the Two Hearts’. The womb (Yesod/foundation) of Imma extends to the Heart of Zer Anpin. Imma reveals the Heart of the Son and the Heart of the Son reveals Abba-Father. It is in relation to Zer Anpin-Son that the Divinity is revealed as Abba –Father. The revelation of the Fatherhood of God (Ain Sof) is the Divine Wisdom (Hokmah). The Divine Son of Man is thus the Divine Wisdom that reveals Abba. It is the Mother through the Spirit of the Divine Understanding that understands the concept of the Divinity as God (Elohim). She is Em ha Elohim (Mother of God).
“He said, Mother thus…” states ‘Bahir’ 63. The “He” is the King mentioned in the same passage. This is the ‘Ani Hu’ (I am He) of the Gospel of John. This Mother who is called Daughter (Bat) is the daughter or Lady of Zion. She is the daughter of Abba, the Mother of Zer Anpin the Son, and the spouse or bride of the Holy Spirit especially in his role as the Spirit of Understanding (Binah) and Wisdom (Hokmah). “He (the Divine King) married her to a King (the Holy Spirit), and also gave her to him (the Son) as a gift” Bahir 63.
‘Bahir’ 98 also speaks of this Divine Heart in connection with the Tree of Life which is the Tree or Body of the Sefirot (Divine Attributes)- “The Heart is the Beauty of the fruit of the Body.” Thus this Heart is the Divine Fruit. St Louis de Montfort calls Our Blessed Mother the mirror of the Divine Tree of Life. In ‘Bahir’ 97 the Heart is said to be sustained by the ‘Lifted Offering’ (in Catholic terms the Mass) made by the willing hearts of the pious and righteous ones. “This refers to the righteous and pious in Israel who raise Me over all the world through their merit. From them the Heart is sustained, and the Heart sustains them”. These are in Catholic terms the holy priests who lift up the Eucharistic Heart in the Holy Sacrifice and the Catholic faithful who lift Him up in adoration. They sustain the Eucharistic Heart with their adoration, and the Eucharistic Heart sustains them with his very self. One adores this beautiful Fruit and consumes it in communion.
‘Bahir’ 63 tells us that the one who wants to enter or know this Heart and its 32 paths of Wisdom must gaze at the Mother. This is why Ben Zoma is outside with the Mother. In Jewish tradition Ben Zoma is one of the four rabbis that made the spiritual ascent. It has been demonstrated by modern Jewish scholarship that Ben Zoma taught Christian doctrines after his ascent but due to his greatness as a Torah scholar and teacher the Rabbinic Jews covered this up by stating that Rabbi Ben Zoma went mad in the Spiritual Ascent. In fact he ascended through the Immaculate Heart of the Mother into the secret paths of the Divine Heart of the Blessed Holy One by gazing at the Mother and the Divine Attributes mirrored in her (her garments). In reality it was Rabbi Akiva, the one Rabbinic Jews consider to have safely ascended and descended that was deceived by the Evil One. The origin of some occult beliefs mixed into the Jewish tradition such as reincarnation seem to have their source in Rabbi Akiva and his followers secret teachings.
In the Jewish mystical tradition the whole of the 32 paths (which are also called Adam Kadmon) are the Heart but the Heart also refers in a special way to the Attribute (Sefirah) of Beauty- Compassion (Tiferet-Rahamim) and this Attribute is also called the Blessed Holy One. It is also called the Holy One of Israel. This Attribute is seen as the heart of the Divine Body. It is from this Heart that the Divine Justice (Din/Gevurah) symbolized by the colour Red and the Divine Mercy (Hesed/Gedulah) symbolized by the colour white pour forth as the Divine and Beautiful Compassionate Fruit of the Holy One of Israel.
The Jewish tradition also connects the Divine Heart with the Divine Glory (Kavod). The word Kavod (Glory) also is numerically 32 the same as Heart (Leb). The 32 paths of Wisdom are also the Divine Glory. While the Divine Kavod includes the whole Divine Heart or Body of the Son, two attributes of God are especially linked to Kavod. The higher Kavod with Divine Wisdom (Hokmah), in its role of revealing Abba. The lower Kavod with Hod (Majesty/Splendour) connected with Mystic Vision. Exodus 33 links the Divine Face with the Divine Glory. This Divine Face is seen as the luminous form of the Divinity manifesting as Divine Glory (Kavod).
In the Jewish tradition, based on Scripture, God’s Attributes are seen as grouped into ten. Of course God’s Attributes are infinite. These ten groupings of Attributes make up the visible manifestation of the Deity known as Adam Kadmon or the Primordial Man. This is also called the Divine Man, Supernal Man and the Son of Man (Ben Adam). This is also called “The Heart” and the ‘Body’ and the ‘Tree of Life’. We receive these attributes as the Bread or Fruit of Life- the divine Dew or Wine of the Divinity.
Adam Kadmon is the Divine Blueprint and he is referred to as the Son as Zer Anpin. Adam Kadmon is also in one Jewish tradition the ‘Soul of Mashiach’. In this tradition it is seen that when the Messiah comes he will besides having a human soul have the Divine Soul of Adam Kadmon. This correlates with the Catholic doctrine of the Divine and human natures of the Messiah. Man is made in the image of the Supernal Man or Son of Man. The Divine Man is also called Arik Anpin which is the Son as the Divine Will to Create also called the Word. As Zer Anpin he is the vehicle (or chariot) for the Supernal especially in his relating with mankind. Zer Anpin is the Son especially in his role as the ‘Mystical Body’ (of the Messiah) with the 7 lower attributes that mirror the 7 sacraments.
In a sense we see that the Divine Face of God which manifests his Divine Will (Arik Anpin) reveals himself in the Creation and in the intellect of Man that contemplates that creation. This is the area of Science and Reason. As Zer Anpin the Divine Face is revealed in the heart of man as the Divine Love. This is the area of faith and emotion. The divine Revelation (Torah) unites the two as one. This is the Prince of the Torah (Sar ha Torah) who is also the Prince of the Faces (Sar ha Panim). This Prince of the Faces gazes with one face (Arik Anpin) at the Father (this is the higher Glory) and with his other face (Zer Anpin) he gazes with love at Man (this is the lower glory). He is the uniter of the Concealed Divinity with Man.
Rabbi Kaplan states: “Zer Anpin is what is usually referred to as the ‘Supernal Man’, and it is with regard to Zer Anpin that it is written that ‘God made man in His image’ (Genesis 1:27). In the spiritual realm, when two things resemble each other they are said to be in proximity, and one can be a vehicle for the other. Therefore since man is the counterpart of Zer Anpin, it is through Zer Anpin that man can become a vehicle for the Supernal.” Thus we see that Zer Anpin is the concept of the Incarnation of God the Son as a Man. Zer Anpin –the Son does this by uniting himself with Matronita (the Female, the Mother).
Matronita is the Mother in her role as Heavenly Prayer Warrior and Intercessor. Matronita is both Warrior Maiden and Heavenly Queen Mother. Raphael Patai calls her the Hebrew Goddess. This binding unity of the Son (Zer Anpin) and the Mother (Matronita) by the Holy Spirit is called the Shekinah. The Shekinah is the Divine Presence. The Shekinah as Male is also called Metatron and Zer Anpin and as Female it is Matronita and Sabbath Queen. As male this is the Church as the Mystical Body of Christ and as female the Church is the Mystical Bride of Christ.
It is through the Mother that the Son manifests in creation as a Man. The Mother leads all men to recognize who her son is. This is the second mystery of Light the ‘Bahir’. Rabbi Kaplan states: “Therefore, since man is the counterpart of Zer Anpin, each individual has a portion there, and each individual’s deeds have an effect on the ‘body’ of Zer Anpin.” this is very close to St Paul’s concept of the Mystical Body of Christ.
The Mother or Female is seen in the Attribute of Binah –Understanding in connection with the Heart as Heavenly or Mystical Mother and in the Attribute of Malkut-Shekinah (Kingdom-Presence) as Heavenly or Mystical Bride. In Miriam (Mary) ha Kadosha’s role as Immaculate Heart she is linked to the Attribute of Binah (Understanding) and is associated as a Heavenly Leah. Miriam (Mary) as Mother of the Church is linked with the Attribute of Malkut-Shekinah and associated as a Heavenly Rachel. Miriam the sister of Moses and Aaron and the section in the Torah referring to her are an earthly shadow or type of the Heavenly Miriam and her role in God’s Plan.
Two letters in Hebrew are associated with the Mother’s womb. The letter Mem is associated with the Mother’s womb in Binah and the letter Tet associated with the Mother’s womb in Malkut- Shekinah. Mem is open from below to give birth to Zer Anpin-the Son. Tet is a womb open at the top to receive from Zer Anpin the Son. As Mother of the Messiah Miriam gives birth to her son and as Mother of the Church she receives from her Son on behalf of herself and all the members of the Church.
Thus we see the Heart of Imma-Mother in Binah is the Immaculate Heart and closely linked to the Heart of the Blessed Holy One in Tiferet-Rahamim. Tiferet is the sefirah of Divine Beauty. The name of Yofiel or Yefefiah for the Prince of Torah (Sar ha Torah) who Moses encountered on Sinai is connected with this Attribute of Divine Beauty. This Yofiel is also called Yeshua Prince of the Faces (Sar ha Panim). This Angel of Yahweh or Yahoel is also called Memra (The Divine Word in Aramaic) and Metatron. He is Azbuga the one with the eight-fold name. AZ=8, BU=8 and GA = 8. 888 is the numerical value of the name of "Jesus" in Greek and the verse in the Torah in the section about Miriam the verse “For I am the Lord that healeth thee” also is numerically in Hebrew 888. Metatron in the the Jewish tradition is called Angel of YHWH, Prince of the Faces, Prince of the Universe, Shekinah, Memra and Adam Kadmon. Metatron is also called the Holy Youth and Holy Child. In the Zohar the Holy Child “Son of Joseph” is also called the Angel of YHWH and Son (Ben). In the Zohar it gives the eight princely titles of Metatron as 1. Prince of the Faces (Sar ha Panim), 2. Prince of the Torah (Sar ha Torah) 3. Prince of the Power ( Sar ha Gevurah),4. Prince of the Glory (Sar ha Kavod), 5. Prince of the Sanctuary (Sar ha Kodesh), 6. Prince of the Angels (Sar ha Malakim), 7. Prince of Kings (Sar ha Melekim) and 8. Prince of Princes (Sar ha Sarim). The synagogue liturgy for Rosh ha Shanah includes mention of the Prince of the Countenance or Faces as Yeshua. Tartiel is also another name meaning ‘God’s other Form’ (Tartei El) and this is also called Yosher, Adam Kadmon and Shir Qoma. Yosher in Judaism means the manifestation of the Deity in his 10 Attributes (Sefirot) in the form of a Man. This divine Man is the Divine Heart that expands from Tiferet-Rahamim and includes all the Sefirot in its form. This Heart is the Eucharistic and Sacred Heart of Yeshuah which is Yeshuah himself. Yeshuah is the Heart that turns the darkness into light. This Heart we adore in the Blessed Sacrament which is the Blessed Holy One.
The concept of Zer Anpin in Jewish mysticism emphasises the seven lower Sefirot as the ‘Body’ of Zer Anpin. In Catholic terms this the Body of Christ that manifests God’s grace in human lives through the seven sacraments or mysteries of the New Covenant. We can link Baptism with Malkut (Kingdom), Confession to Yesod-Tzaddik (Foundation/Righteousness), Confirmation to Din-Gevurah (Judgement/Power), Holy Orders to Hod-Kavod (Majesty/Glory), Matrimony to Netzach (Victory/Endurance) and Anointing of the sick to Tiferet-Rahamaim (Beauty/Compassion) and the Eucharist to Chesed (Mercy/Grace/ Love). The greatest of the Sacraments is the Eucharist as it is the sacrament of Divine Love. This is the fifth mystery of Light called ‘Tov’. Chesed is also called Gedulah (Greatness). The mysteries of the Rosary are also found in this Heart. This Heart has been described as a Diamond by St Teresa of Avila with many chambers grouped into seven mansions. The Jewish traditions also refer to the concept of the Diamond. A young Catholic Man Craig Williams who knew nothing of Catholic or Jewish mysticism was given an understanding of the Soul and spiritual life as a dynamic diamond that mirrored the ten Sefirot. This young man from Texas received this insight after some Greek Orthodox monks prayed over him in Athens where he was on a modeling shoot. This man dedicated himself to Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration and was led to Jerusalem where he shared these insights with me. This inspired me to write the present article.
Binah (Understanding ) is linked to Prayer. As stated above’the heart understands’ and prayer is described as ‘service of the heart’. In Judaism one must pray with Kevanah (devotion or concentration of the heart). We have seen that this Heart linked with Binah is the Heart of Imma-Mother who has the deepest kevanah (heart devotion) so that she is the mirror (Mariah) of the Divine Attributes of Adam Kadmon. Other men are darkened and clouded mirrors of the Divine Attributes but the Mother is a pure and crystal clear Mirror. Thus the highest and best way of prayer (the service of the heart) is with and in and through the kevanah (heart devotion) of the Holy Mother. This Mother is the Mother of Sorrows. Her name Miriam means Bitter Sea and she sheds an ocean or sea of tears in union with her Son which becomes the Ocean of Mercy for the world. St John of the Cross calls the spiritual path the Ascent of Carmel and Miriam is the Mother of Carmel and it is through the Dark Night that one walks with Miriam on the spiritual ascent. This spiritual path is centred on the Living Bread- the Eucharist. Imma –Mother is also called in Kabbalah the Sea of Wisdom and she is associated with the waters (sea) called mayim. The mem and sofit mem in the Hebrew alphabet are very significant. Mem being the Sea or womb that is the vessel that contains Wisdom which is the final or closed mem. The name mayim (waters) and the name Miriam (Bitter Sea) and mem itself contains both the open and closed mems. The 13 Attributes (Aspects) of Mercy are seen as 13 shining triangular Mems which are seen as spiritual or Living Waters (mayim). The 13 Attributes of Mercy are part of the 32 paths of Wisdom which is the Divine Heart and Glory. Miriam is the Mother of Mercy and is the perfect mirror (Mariah) of the 13 attributes or aspects of Mercy (Chesed). 13 is the number of Our Lady of Fatima as well as Queen Esther who in turn is a type of Our Lady. The numbers one (echad) and love (ahavah) also are numerically 13 in Hebrew. Esther means star and Miriam ha Kadosha is called Star of the Sea (Stella Maris) in Catholic devotion. In many European languages the first part of Our Lady’s name MR means Sea i.e. Mer, Maris and in Hebrew the last part of her name means Sea (yam). The Sea in Genesis is called Mayim (waters) below and Genesis also describes the waters (mayim) above. Kabbalah calls these waters the Spiritual Waters. These spiritual waters are seen as the colour blue or sapphire and this is the colour of Miriam. These spiritual waters (mayim) are associated with the Sefirah of Chesed-Mercy. These spiritual waters flow forth from the Blessed Sacrament through the heart of the Mother (Imma/Em) Miriam. Miriam can thus be called ‘Sea Sea” or ‘Waters Waters’. Heaven (Shamayim) is called in Bahir 59 Sham Mayim –‘There is Waters’. And ‘Heaven’ in the Kabbalah is also a name for Zer Anpin- the Son. Heaven is also called Esh Mayim in Bahir 59 which means ‘Fire Waters’. Thus the Attribute of Gevurah-Din (Power/Judgement) contains ‘waters combined with fire’. Without the waters Gevurah becomes the fire of Gehinnom on the Sitra Ahra. This all has its base in the mystical reading of the section of the Torah in Exodus (Shemot) which speaks about Miriam and the Sea of Suf.
When the Jewish mystics such as Rabbi Ben Zoma made the spiritual ascent they encountered Miriam ha kadosha (Mary) as pure marble as transparent a water. Rabbi Akiva warns one not to cry out ‘Waters Waters’ ‘Mayim Mayim’. It would seem that Rabbi Akiva was afraid that his fellow Jewish mystics would realize that this was Miriam (Waters Waters) as did Rabbi Ben Zoma when he gazed on the Mother as mentioned in Bahir 63. Rabbi Chananel ben Chushiel states that there is actually no water there but a form is seen. This form is called ‘The Watcher of the Chamber of the Marble Door’ who casts forth thousands upon thousands of waves of spiritual water. The Rabbis forbade the Jewish people to ask what the purpose of this water is. This whole ascent is seen as occurring in the depths of the Heart. It is through the Eucharistic Heart of the Blessed Sacrament that one enters the Spiritual realm. Mary is the one who mediates the spiritual waters (graces) as an Ocean or Sea of Wisdom and Mercy. The waves of spiritual water are the numerous graces dispensed by the Mediatrix of Graces. Alternately the waves of spiritual water are Mary and the Watcher or form (Yosher) is Yeshuah himself (see John 7:38).The name Nazareth means Watcher. Yeshua ha Notzri can mean Jesus the Watcher or Watchman. Mary is the Crystal Sea in Heaven to whom all the saints do homage by casting down their crowns to her. She is also the Heavenly Rainbow and the Heavenly Ark of the Covenant. She is the Divine Throne and the Divine Chariot. Jeremiah 31 and 32 states that YHVH will give the House of Israel and the House of Judah a new Covenant and will put Torah in their minds and write Torah on their hearts. “And I will give them a single Heart and a single Way”. Torah is the way of the Heart – the 32 paths. This single Heart and Way are the 32 paths of Wisdom /Torah. This is the Sacred Heart. The Jewish mystical tradition calls the Torah the Divine Heart as the first word of the Torah begins with the Hebrew letter beth (bereshit) and it ends with the Hebrew letter lamed (Yisrael) and lamed beth is leb or lev which is Heart in English. And as mentioned above leb (heart) is numerically in gematria 32. This is why the Church calls the Messiah the Sacred Heart as well as calling Scripture the Heart of Yeshuah (see CCC). It is interesting that the Scriptures begin with the letter Beth in Genesis I and the last letter of the Scriptures in the Apocalypse of John is the nun of 'amen' thus the word 'ben' (beth nun) which is the Hebrew for Son. Thus the whole of Scriptures is a relevation of the Divine Son (Ben) as Divine Word (Davar). We unite our hearts with the kevanah (heart devotion) of the Mother . This kevanah or heart devotion of the Mother is what Catholics call the Immaculate Heart of Miriam (Mary). We unite with Miriam’s kevanah by fixing our gaze on the Mother and her garments (i.e. ten Sefirot/ 13 Attributes of Mercy mirrored in her) and she takes us in to the heart of her Son, the Blessed Holy One – the Holy Child, Son of Joseph, mentioned in the ‘Zohar’. In the Heart of this Son is revealed Abba-Father, the source of Wisdom/Word/Torah. The precious blood that flows from this Divine Heart is Love or Mercy (Chesed). When we adore the Divine Heart, in union with the Mother, then waves of Divine Water (Mercy) gush forth as the blood of the Mashiach. This is Mayim Chayyim (Living Waters) as mentioned by Yeshuah in John’s Gospel.
The Holy Child and his Mother are mentioned in the ‘Zohar’. In this account the Holy Child is called the Blessed Holy One and YHVH and the Angel-messenger of YHVH. It is his Torah that the rabbis feed on in this Zoharic account just as did the rabbis in the Temple when Yeshuah was 12 years old in the New Testament account. This Zoharic account alludes to the fact that the Holy Child is Ben Joseph (a son of Joseph) and thus he is Mashiach ben Joseph. This Holy Child who is Mashiach ben Joseph raises/lifts the Cup of Salvation (Yeshuah). In other traditions it is the Heavenly David or the Mashiach ben David that raises/lifts the Cup of Salvation. This seems to indicate that Mashiach ben Joseph and Mashiach ben David are the one Messiah. The Jewish tradition speaks of Mashiach ben Joseph as the Suffering Messiah who bears Israel’s sin and he is killed and resurrected. He is also called the Comforter (Menahem). The Holy Spirit is called another Comforter in the New Testament by Yeshuah. Noah was also called Menahem. Yeshuah is the New Noah (Menahem) and his New Ark is the Heart of his Mother in which he resides/dwells. The humanity of his flesh and blood is uniquely from his Mother alone. Thus in one sense the flesh and blood of Yeshuah is the flesh and blood of Miriam – they are two hearts that beat as one. Yeshuah is flesh of her flesh, bone of her bone, blood of her blood and heart of her heart. Miriam he Kadosha as the New Ark (vessel) bore Yeshuah within her. As the New Ark of the Covenant she also bore his Presence. She is also the Cup (Chalice/vessel) that contains his precious blood and she is the golden vessel that contains the Living Bread (Manna). These two hearts are in alliance (covenant) and this is the New Covenant which was sealed by the Mother at the foot of the Cross where her heart/soul was pierced by sorrow as she united it with the Heart of her Son as he wrought the salvation of Mankind on the Cross (Tav). This is why it is so fitting to call Miriam the Co-Redemptrix. In a unique way the Heart of the Mother participated in the Sacrifice of the Son for the Redemption of the world. In the Jewish tradition Queen Esther is called a Redeemer so how much more appropriate is it that the New Esther- Miriam he Kadosha- should bear the title Co-Redemptrix. When we unite our hearts with the Heart of the Co-Redemptrix we become co-redeemers or co-workers with Christ (Mashiach). We thus enter in to the single Heart that is engraved with the 32 paths of Torah. The 32 paths are the one Way – the Way of the Heart. How do we enter this Way of the Heart? By adoration of the Heart - by gazing at (or adoring) the Heart. This Heart is the Divine Presence (Shekinah).
Bahir 63 teaches us that one can’t gaze directly at this Heart and its mysteries but one can gaze at the Mirror of this Heart which is the Mother-Daughter of the Divine King and her garments. One begins this Way of the Heart in union with the Mother through the quality (Hasidut) of Lowliness (Shiflut). Lowliness was demonstrated by Miriam at the Annunciation by her joyful acceptance of the Word of God. To attain this lowliness one must be familiar with the Word of God (the Torah) and then one must humble himself and obey the Word by uniting one’s ‘Yes’ with the ‘Yes’ of Miriam. One thus enters the Kingdom (Malkut) of the Son (Heaven=Zer Anpin=Son) which is the Divine Presence (Shekinah) in union with the Mother of the Kehilla which is Miriam as Matronita and Bride (Kallah). One offers his body as a living sacrifice in union with the sacrifice of Yeshuah. This is shiflut (Lowliness). This is the inner Grace of the Sacrament of Baptism. One thus enters the Light of the Divine Presence which is also called Metatron. This first stage of the Spiritual Way can be summed up as ‘humble thyself’. This stage in the Mass is genuflecting and kneeling in preparation for the start of the Divine Mysteries.
The second stage which is the foundation (yesod) of the Eucharistic spiritual life can be summed up as ‘know thyself’. That is, know the truth (emet) about yourself, the truth about life, the truth about sex, the truth about the person and the truth about the heart. This foundation in truth is called Righteousness (Tzaddik). The quality to attain in this second stage is carefulness or watchfulness of the heart. This stage is the stage of confession and teshuvah (repentance/return). This is a purifying and turning of the heart to the Divine Heart. One must build a solid, truthful and righteous foundation for the spiritual life by facing the truth and confessing one’s sins through the Sacrament of Confession/Reconciliation. This is the level of Name, of finding one’s true identity or name in Christ/Mashiach. In order to discover this truth one must realize the necessity of placing oneself before the Divine Presence in order to adore. Yeshuah said, “Would you not watch one hour with me?” One is here called to be Watchmen (Notzrim/Christians). This is the first sorrowful mystery. This is the first level of the soul – the level of the vessel called nefesh. At this level we prepare for adoration of the Divine Heart by confessing and naming our sins and we attain to the quality of carefulness or watchfulness of the heart. In the Mass this second level is also the rite of confession of sins. This second level is the level of Mashiach ben Joseph the Suffering Messiah taking on our sins in the Garden of Gethsemane. This 2nd level is also the Mystery of the 2nd Joyful mystery of the Visitation when in joy Elizabeth (Elisheva) names Miriam ha Kadosha as the Mother of God and the New Ark of the Covenant. Confronted with this Divine Truth she becomes aware of her own sinfulness and unworthiness of such a blessing. This level is the Light of Life (Chaim). This 2nd level is the phallus of the Divine Body associated with the righteous one (Tzaddik) Joseph and Messiah son of Joseph. It is the level of guarding the loins by purity and righteous.
In regards to the human body we have the concepts of flexion and extension, and in the soul this is called Constricted Consciousness and Expanded Consciousness. These are the 3rd and 4th levels of the spiritual ascent – the levels of mystic vision and prophecy. The 3rd stage is God’s Attribute of Splendour or Majesty (Hod) – it is the Light of Radiance (zohar). It is the level of the left side of flexion or constricted consciousness. In order to attain the grace or quality of this level one needs ‘cleanliness of heart’ and the grace one receives is sincerity of mind, heart and action. This is the level of the 2nd sorrowful mystery of the scourging in order to counteract the 39 spirits of lust. At this level is the inner grace of the sacrament of Holy Orders. It is the level associated with Aaron the High Priest. This is the prophetic level of love of God. This is the level of 1st Ranan adoration or meditation (hitbodedut). There are two levels of Ranan (joyful praise) but this is the level of 1st Ranan Adoration. It is closely associated with Hagah adoration which follows it. Ranan is a method of charismatic prayer/praise. It is emotional heart worship /adoration with ecstatic expressions such as tongues and songs. One arouses the emotions with songs of joyful praise in preparation for entering the level of Hagah adoration. One starts to focus and concentrate on the Lord by lively charismatic praise. In the Mass this is the singing of the Gloria. The 3rd level is the left leg (regel) of the Divine Body associated with mystic vision.
The 4th level is associated with the Divine Attribute of Netzach. Netzach is Divine Victory/Endurance/Perseverance. This is the level of extension or expanded consciousness. This is the level of the Light of Brilliance (bahir). This is the step of ‘zeal or diligence of the heart’. Its grace or quality is confidence or boldness. It is a boldness to proclaim the Word of God and confidently and with authority to enter into his Eucharistic Presence/Heart. This is the level of the inner grace of the Sacrament of Matrimony. The 3rd Joyful Mystery is between this 4th level and the 3rd level – thus we can say that the Mystery of the Nativity is on the left side of Netzach and the right side of Hod. On the right side of Netzach is the 1st Glorious Mystery – the Mystery of the Victory of the Resurrection. This is the Light triumphing over Darkness. This is the level of Hagah adoration. Hagah adoration is attained by the use of chants or mantras such as the Rosary, litanies, the Divine Mercy chaplet and the Jesus Prayer. This method of adoration purifies and clears the mind and heart so that it can focus on the Divine Heart. Its goal is to bring one into a state of resting or relaxing within the Divine Heart. This is a state of just being with the Lord. This method of adoration induces the melting of the self/heart and being directed by the Holy Spirit. Hagah is called ‘directed existence’ by Rabbi Kaplan in his book “Meditation and the Bible”. It is a receiving from the Divine Attributes of the Divine Heart. It is the stage of gazing and receiving from the Divine Light which is the Sacred Heart. This level is also a changing/transforming of the darkness in to light. Rabbi Kaplan explains that one reaches through Hagah to the experience of Nogah (the Meditative Light) and from there one experiences Chasmal – the speaking silence. This is the Word of God coming in the still small voice in the silence of the heart. In the Mass this level is the reading and reflecting on the Word of God and the homily. The 4th level is the right leg of the Divine Body associated with prophecy. This is the Attribute associated with Moses.
The 5th level is the level associated with the Attribute of Tiferet-Rahamim (Beauty / Compassion). This is called the inner heart or soul. It is also the emotive soul or vital soul called Nashamah (Breath). It is the step of ‘abstention or separation of the heart’. It is the compassionate Heart and measured giving. Its light is Kavod (Glory). It is the level of the inner grace of the Sacrament of Healing/Anointing. Its grace is compassion (rahamim). On the left of Tiferet is the 3rd sorrowful mystery of the Crowning of Thorns. On the right side of Tiferet is the 2nd glorious mystery the Ascension. Its inner light ‘Kavod’ is manifested in the 4th mystery of Light the Transfiguration. This is the level connected with divine healing and the archangel of Healing St. Raphael. The angels of this Attribute are called Melakim (Kings or Dominions). Its symbol is the Sun. Its archetype is Jacob or Israel. It is called the Holy One of Israel. In a sense this is the heart within the Divine Heart. It is the Divine Centre of the Heart. Deep calling to deep. The adoration method of this level is called Rinah (Joyous Song) or 2nd Ranan adoration. It is a deeper and higher level of ‘charismatic’ praise or emotional worship. One at this stage uses the emotions to elevate oneself to a high spiritual plane. This is the path, says Rabbi Kaplan, “where one rises to the shadow of God’s wings”. The shadow of God’s wings is also called in Judaism the ‘wings of the Shekinah’. At this level one binds or consecrates himself to God. Through this heart-felt praise one enters into spiritual warfare against the Evil Ones and this praise acts as a protective shield (Psalm 149:5,6) against the Other Side (Sitra Ahra). This is the level from which the Holy Spirit’s gifts of ‘healings’ proceeds. The ‘gifts of healings’ comes via a compassionate heart for the sick and suffering. In the Mass this is the level of preparation leading to the Kadosh, Kadosh, Kadosh. This is the Heart and Torso of the Divine Body.
The 6th level is associated with God’s Attribute of Din (Judgement) also called Gevurah (power), Justice, Fear, Severity, Strength, Awe and Discernment. This is the constricted consciousness area of concentration. Concentration is also called kevanah (heart devotion). It is the level of ‘purity and perfection of the heart’. It is associated with spiritual prudence or withholding. Its archangel is St Gabriel and its angels the Seraphim (i.e. fiery serpents). This was the choir of Lucifer before his fall. He through pride and harsh judgement rejected Divine Mercy/Love and passed to the Other Side (Sitra Ahra). This level is connected with preaching the Word of God with strength and power. It is also the 4th sorrowful mystery of the Way of the Cross. This is the heart of the Dark Night of the Soul whose light is called ‘Nogah’ or glow light. It is the inner grace of the Sacrament of Confirmation. In the Mass it is the words of consecration. The spiritual gift (charism) of this level is Discernment of Spirits. It is also the adoration method of Siyach adoration. In this level one is moved by the Holy Spirit into spontaneous mental and verbal praises. It is the level in which one has internal conversations of the heart. Rabbi Kaplan calls this stage “inner directed, unstructured meditation whether verbal or non verbal”. One focuses on a spiritual subject and looks at it from all sides. In general it is a meditation on God’s wonders and teachings. It can also involve spontaneous singing and chanting (Psam104:33,34; Psalm 105:1). It involves spontaneous prayer forms and meditation on one’s spiritual and moral development. This method leads to concentrating on one idea and distracting the mind from everyday thoughts. This adoration method causes the soul to float and elevate ascending the Tree of Life which is the Attributes of the Divine Body/Heart. One ascends and gazes on the Attributes of God mirrored in the Mother’s Heart. This is the left arm of the Divine Body associated with the colour red. It is the level associated with the Power of the Precious Blood.
The 7th level is associated with God’s Attribute of Hesed (Chesed). Hesed is Love, Mercy, Loving kindness and Grace. The inner light of this level is called ‘Tov’ (good). It is the 5th mystery of light – the Eucharist. This is the level of piety or saintliness which is loving kindness to the Father and to one’s neighbour. It is the level of relaxation and receiving from the Divine Heart of the Lord. The inner grace of the Sacrament of the Eucharist is associated with this Attribute of God. The grace of this level is Love (ahavah). This is the Divine Mercy. The Divine Mercy has 13 attributes or aspects. Hesed or Love/Mercy is the life blood of the Heavenly Body (Adam Kadmon). It is the greatest (gedulah) of God’s attributes (Sefirot). It unites the Godhead as One (echad). The ten Sefirot are one Love, one Body, one Tree of Life and one Heart. The 13 aspects of Mercy are one Divine Mercy in the one Heart. The ten Sefirot are also three Lights, and the three Lights are one power of Love. The 10 Sefirot and the three Lights are the 13 aspects of Mercy and they are the one power of Love. The 10 Sefirot are one God in one Essence. The three Lights are the one God of Light. This is a deep mystery of the Triune God.
Maimonides (the Rambam) taught incorrectly that the 10 Sefirot in the Godhead are created Lights or emanations but Nahmanides (the Ramban) taught, in accord with earlier Kabbalists, that the 10 Sefirot were of the Essence of the Deity. The mirrors of the 10 Sefirot in the Creation, in the spiritual world, in Miriam ha Kadosha and in Man are the created emanations of the Divine Light. Unfortunately the Lurianic Kabbalists followed Maimonides rather than Nahmanides.
In the Mass this 7th level is Communion. On the left side of Hesed is the 4th joyful mystery of the Presentation of the Living Shekinah the Holy Child in the Temple and on the right side is the 3rd glorious mystery the descent of the Holy Spirit as tongues of fire. It is the white right arm of the Divine Man. It is the level from which the 13 aspects of Divine Mercy blaze forth from the Divine Heart. It is the level of Shasha adoration in which one enters into tranquil rapture by the power of the Holy Spirit – “Be still and know that I am God”. The soul is unaware of outside happenings in this state. Shasha adoration is meditation of intense passion on the Love/ Mercy (Hesed) of God. It is a vision of Divine Love and Mercy. Shasha is a gazing at the Divine Mysteries and receiving. Shasha is to reach the goal of one’s meditation and to be totally absorbed and enraptured in adoration by the Divine Mercy which is the Divine Heart. It is utter sincerity and peace. It is the level of ‘running and returning’ (see Ezekiel 1:14) and if one stayed too long the body could not survive the intensity of the burning fire of God’s Love. Shasha adoration ascends to the level of contemplation (hitbonenut) which is the adoration of the 8th, 9th and 10th levels of the spiritual ascent of the Tree of Life which is the Divine Heart and Glorious Face of the Lord. Beyond this only a person of the highest and deepest spirituality can probe beyond Hokmah (Wisdom) into the Divine Will. The highest possible level to attain while in the flesh is called ‘Living in the Divine Will’ which was the level that Miriam ha Kadosha attained. Contemplation (hitbonenut) is the level of understanding (binah) by gazing with intense concentration (kevanah/heart devotion) on a subject until one understands it completely. This can start at the level of Siyach adoration (6th level) and ascend through Shasha until the higher levels.
The 8th level is associated with the Attribute of Binah (understanding). this is the level of deep prayer of the heart. This is the level of deep joy (simcha). The fruit of this level is humility or littleness. This is the level of the Magnificat. As mentioned above this level is closely associated with the Imma-Mother and the Divine Heart. It is the level of the 5th sorrowful mystery. In the Mass it is the fruits of Communion via reflection and thanksgiving. It is an entering into Divine Joy.
The 9th level is associated with Hokmah (Wisdom) and is the level of Divinization (Divinicise). It is a high level of Fear and Awe of Divine Majesty and Fear of sin which together are Divine Wisdom. This is Beginning (Reshit). This is the level of the 4th glorious mystery of Miriam’s assumption body and soul into Heaven. It is the level of nothingness or self- nullification and selflessness.
The 10th level is that of Ruach or Spirit. It is called Keter (Crown). It is the level of the 5th glorious mystery of the crowning of Miraim ha Kadosha in Heaven. Her crown is the Divine Heart of her Son. This is the level of Divine Knowledge and Divine Union. It is the level of complete Holiness. It is the level of total unity or union with God. In Hassidut it is called ‘Yachid’. Yachid is the only begotten son mentioned in the Akeidah of Isaac. We can say that the three lights or roots which are the source of the 10 sefirot are the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The Father is the level of emunah (faith), the Son is Will (Ratzon) and the Holy Spirit is Desire (taanug).
Thus this is a Hebrew Catholic Way of Adoration of the Divine Heart. In Judaism this Mystical way is called the ‘running of the heart’. This is the 32 paths of Wisdom /Torah. These 32 paths are mentioned in the first chapter of Genesis with the 32 times that God (Elohim) is mentioned. These 32 paths are linked to the 10 numbers that are the 10 Sefirot and the 22 letters of the Hebrew Alphabet which are the Alef and Tav (in Greek Alpha and Omega). The first ten utterances of ‘God said’ are seen as the ten Sefirot which created the world. They are ten utterances that are One Word manifesting over 7 days. This is linked in Jewish thought with the 10 utterances or commands on Mt. Sinai which is One Torah manifesting in 7 voices. The other 22 times God (Elohim) is mentioned is connected with the 22 letters of the alphabet.
The three ‘mother’ letters are linked to the three ‘God made’ expressions. The term ‘Mother’ is linked to Understanding (binah). This is because it is the Mother (Imma) who understands and mirrors God (Elohim) to the deepest level. ‘God made’ is connected to the concept of the Mother gazing at and reflecting the Three Divine Lights which are the Triune God. The three mother are the letters alef, mem and shin. Mem is the 13th letter of the Hebrew alphabet and is associated with the Attribute of Divine Mercy/Love (Hesed/ Ahavah) in its 13 aspects. The path of Mem is the path that connects the Divine Majesty with the Divine Victory. The mem is closely connected with the Mashiach who is born by Miriam.
The alef represents the source of Wisdom - the Father. Alef is the path connecting Divine Mercy and Divine Judgement in the Heart of the Divine Body. In the heart of the Son one can see the Father. Shin is the path connecting Divine Wisdom with Divine Understanding by the power of the Holy Spirit. Mem is associated with the spiritual waters (mayim), alef with the spiritual air (avir) or breath and shin with the spiritual Fire (esh). Mem is connected to the Hay (H) of the Divine Name, Alef with with Yod (Y) of the Divine Name and Shin with the Vav (V) of the Divine Name.
Mem in a sense envelops the whole Divine Heart or Diamond. The thirteen shining triangular Mems are the thirteen triangular paths found in the diagram of the Sefirotic Tree or Body. This appears as the Divine Diamond. This is the Son as King of Mercy.The Alef is connected with the concept of the Alef and Tav which are the paths within the Divine Heart. This is the Father as the source of Wisdom that dwells in the deepest reaches of the Divine Heart of the Son.
The Jewish mystical tradition holds much light or knowledge but it is in fragments like a jig saw puzzle. In Yeshuah ha Mashiach the Hebrew Catholic is called to unify these traditions and to purify them with the spiritual waters of the Son and the spiritual fire of the Holy Spirit. Then they will reflect the Divine Beauty hidden within them. This unity is the mystery of the Divine Heart. Assess to this Divine Heart is through adoration in and with and through the heart devotion of the Mother. The mysteries of the Divine Heart is the mystery of the unification of the Divine Name Yod Hay and Vav Hay by the Shin. The Shin represents the 3 pillars of the Sefirot and thus is Adam Kadmon who is the soul of the Mashiach ben Joseph. The letter Shin represents the Wisdom and Understanding of the Triune Godhead and the Incarnation of God becoming Man for the salvation (yeshuah) of the world. This is YHShVH (Yeshuah). This is the Divine Name of power. This the power of Love called the Divine Heart of YHShVH. Yeshuah is the name that turns darkness into Divine Light. Yeshuah is also called Metatron and Yahoel. Metatron is also called Naar (Youth) and Yeled (Child). This is the Holy Child of the Zohar that raises the Cup of Yeshuah (salvation).
The seven mentions of ‘God saw’ in Genesis 1 are connected to the seven double letters of the alphabet. This is connected with the seven Sacraments and the seven mansions of St Teresa of Avila. They are the seven vertical lines or paths ascending upwards from the seven lower Sefirot. The remaining 12 mentions of Elohim in Genesis represent the 12 elemental letters of the alphabet. These are the diagonal lines of paths in the Diagram of the Sefirotic Tree or Body.
Let us adore this Heart which is so pierced by man’s indifference. Let us follow the Way of the Divine Heart by loving and adoring the Heart with the love of the Mother’s Heart. This is Eucharistic Adoration as it is the adoration of the Eucharistic Heart of Yeshuah. These are the 32 paths (netivot) of ascending within the Heart and one will be led by Mary along the paths best suited to their personality and level of development. This is the Heart of her Son. This is not written to try and convert Jews to the Catholic Faith but it is written to help Hebrew Catholics to go deeper into the mysteries of our Faith and to develop our own Hebrew spiritual theology that can enrich the whole Church. This is only my very poor effort to contribute to this development.
So like Ben Zoma let us ascend and gaze with the Mother at the mysteries of the Divine Heart so that we too can receive the crazy/mad/insane Love of the Heart. Our Rabbinic brothers may, like they did of Ben Zoma, say we are insane and have misunderstood the mysteries. Nevertheless let us lift up our Jewish brethren in adoration to the Light and Love flowing forth as Living Waters from the Divine Heart in the Blessed Sacrament which is the Cup of Salvation. We expectantly await the day when the veil will be lifted and we are one in the knowledge that the Divine Heart is the Mashiach Yeshuah.
Posted by Catholic Jew at 4:15 pm