RELG 447 - KABBALAH QUESTIONS

RELG 447 - KABBALAH QUESTIONS - Hevruta 6 Assignment Unit 6...

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Hevruta 6 Assignment Unit 6 Read chapters 3 and 4 in the Dan book, and do Summary Reading . Read Cohn-Sherbok, “ Ayn Sof ” (p. 84), “The Emanation of the Ayn Sof ” (p. 85-6), “The Order of the Sefirot” (p. 89-90), “The Cosmic Structure of the Sefirot” (p. 90), The Sitra Ahra ” (p. 90) Discuss the following with your hevurta and send me written responses. 1. What image seems most concrete and understandable to you when the Zohar speaks about creation? In The Order of the Sefirot , the description of emanation has a correspondence with the current physical theory of the origins of the universe. This may seem strange and abstract but it is actually quite concrete to the scientific mind. The concept of the unfolding universe is described concretely in what is called the “standard model” of physics. Consider, for example, that the Ayn Sof is unknowable, and un-describable. This corresponds to the first nanoseconds before the Big Bang, which cannot be described in modern physical theory. The subsequent stages of aggregation and nucleogenesis seem to also correspond with the solidification of the universe in sefirotic stages. Such works as The Elegant Universe and The Fabric of the Cosmos , by Brian Greene, include detailed explanations of cosmogenesis that comport with the Sefirotic process of emanation and unfolding. Further reading in Cohn-Sherbok ( Creation Through Light , p. 88) has implications that also correspond with physical nature. The concepts described in this passage correspond somewhat to the unification of matter and electromagnetic radiation as described in string theory. 2. Why do you think that the image of a human body is used in many visual depictions of the sefirotic system? The human body is considered to be a microcosm whereas the universe (depicted as a physical manifestation of the sefirotic system) is a macrocosm. They are viewed Kabbalistically as mirror images of one another. The Ayn Sof is the unnamable, incomprehensible central point to all the universe and equally to the central point of the human. The various emanations which comprise unique aspects of the universe correspond to the various aspects of the spiritual and corporeal body. In this way the Kabbalist develops a unity between his self and the universe that
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This note was uploaded on 02/02/2011 for the course RELG 447 taught by Professor Nutkiewicz,m. during the Fall '10 term at New Mexico.

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RELG 447 - KABBALAH QUESTIONS - Hevruta 6 Assignment Unit 6...

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