Monday, March 21, 2016

Tzimtzum: Primordial Space & Time in the Kabbalah


"The tzimtzum or tsimtsum (Hebrew צמצום ṣimṣūm "contraction/constriction/condensation") is a term used in the Lurianic Kabbalah to explain Isaac Luria's (1534-1572 AD) doctrine that G-d began the process of creation by "contracting" his Ein Sof (infinite) light in order to allow for a "conceptual space" (Primordial Space) in which finite and seemingly independent realms could exist. This primordial initial contraction, forming a Chalal/Khalal/Khalal Hapanui ("vacant space", חלל הפנוי) into which new creative light could beam, is denoted by general reference to the tzimtzum.".......

"Tzimtzum.....a refraction and concealmentof the radiating emanation.....two meanings:
1. Contraction, condensation
2. Concealment, occulation"
.....Schochet (page 49)

"These tzimtzum are all in the nature of a 'veiling of the countenance' to obscure and conceal the light and life-force so that it shall not manifest itself in a greater radiance than the lower worlds are capable of receiving.".....Schochet (page 57)

"En Sof.....The luminary, Radiator.....Infinite, without limits, beyond all concealments....a radical leap or jump (dilug and kefizah)....a radical act of creation....after that has occurred begins an evolutionary process culminating in finite and material entities."
Or En Sof.....The light, Radiation....the light of the En Sof....this manifestation is equally omnipresent and infinite."........Schochet (page 51)

"Ohr ("Light" Hebrew: אור‎; plural: Ohros/Ohrot "Lights" Hebrew: אורות‎) is a central Kabbalistic term"

"The term En Sof indicates no grasping nor any thought, prior to all that are emanated, created, formed and time of start, no beginning, no end, continually present, absolute perfection."

"Ein Sof, or Ayn Sof (/eɪn sɒf/, Hebrew: אין סוף), in Kabbalah.....may be translated as "no end", "unending", "there is no end", or infinity. It was first used by Azriel ben Menahem, (c. 1160 – c. 1238 AD) who, sharing the Neoplatonic belief that God can have no desire, thought, word, or action, emphasized by it the negation of any attribute. Of the Ein Sof, nothing ("Ein") can be grasped ("Sof"-limitation). It is the origin of the Ohr Ein Sof, the "Infinite Light" of paradoxical divine self-knowledge, nullified within the Ein Sof prior to creation. In Lurianic Kabbalah, the first act of creation, the Tzimtzum self "withdrawal" of God to create an "empty space", takes place from there. In Hasidism, the Tzimtzum is only the illusionary concealment of the Ohr Ein Sof, giving rise to monistic panentheism.".....

"Olam Ha ba....'olam ha-ba, (עולם הבא) "world to come"....the spiritual world to come, the supernal Garden of Eden."

"Primordial Space....brought about by a contraction and concentration of Divinity into itself....this first act of creation was to bring about space in which the divine emanations and the evolving finite world could have a place to was screened, dimmed, hidden and concealed...where this concealment and occulation of the light occurred, an 'empty' place, a 'void' evolved into primordial space....this is the act of the first tzimtzum, an act of 'Divine Self Limitation' rather than 'Divine Revelation'.....

"In the second phase of the creative process, an overt ray or radiation of the divine light beams into the primeval space of the chalal (a void)......this thin ray or line (kav....the thin line of energy that emerges after the tzimtzum) irradiates the chalal and is the source of the subsequent is both the creative and the vivifying force of creation.....the 'kav' itself undergoes a series of contractions and concealments making possible successively lower stages of creation.....the lowest stage is the finite, pluralistic and material world.....lower beings in this world are in a state of finitude and limitation."........Schochet (page 56)

"Tzimtzum, the process of a progressing dimming, occulation and condensation of the light of the En Sof, brought about umerous levels, one lower than the other.....The are referred to as the Five Realms or Worlds....the 'higher' worlds receive a radiance infinitely greater than the 'lower' ones.".....Schochet (page 105)

"Change depends on time..... it is a relative, temporal-spatial concept....time and space are themselves creations....from our temporal-spatial perspective there is 'before' and 'after' but not from the supra-temporal/spatial perspective."

"Because the tzimtzum results in the "empty space" in which spiritual and physical Worlds and ultimately, free will can exist, G-d is often referred to as "Ha-Makom" (המקום lit. "the Place", "the Omnipresent") in Rabbinic literature ("He is the Place of the World, but the World is not His Place"). In Kabbalistic interpretation, this describes the paradox of simultaneous Divine presence and absence within the vacuum and resultant Creation. Relatedly, Olam — the Hebrew for "World/Realm" — is derived from the root עלם meaning "concealment". This etymology is complementary with the concept of Tzimtzum in that the subsequent spiritual realms and the ultimate physical universe conceal to different degrees the infinite spiritual lifeforce of creation. Their progressive diminutions of the Divine Ohr (Light) from realm to realm in creation are also referred to in the plural as secondary tzimtzumim (innumerable "condensations/veilings/constrictions" of the lifeforce). However, these subsequent concealments are found in earlier, Medieval Kabbalah. The new doctrine of Luria advanced the notion of the primordial withdrawal (a dilug - radical "leap") in order to reconcile a causal creative chain from the Infinite with finite Existence."....

"The symbol of Tikkun ha-Olam embodies the most distinctively Jewish, as well as the the single most important ethical injunction of the Kabbalah: the command that humanity must restore and redeem a broken and fallen world (see Shevirat ha-Kelim) articulated by Isaac Luria in 16th century Safed.....the Unification of G-d and His Shekhina: An erotic union between the masculine and feminine aspects of G-d is an important Kabbalistic symbol which predates and was incorporated into the Lurianic symbol of Tikkun. The Zohar holds that G-d's feminine aspect is exiled on earth as the "Shekhinah" and that she must be reunited with "The Holy One Blessed Be He." The unity between the masculine and feminine aspects of the godhead was broken by the sins of mankind, and the exile of the Jewish people, and is maintained by the "Other Side". Through the observance of the mitzvot and divine worship, humankind is able to reestablish the union between God and His Shekhina,".....

Mystical Concepts in Immanuel Schochet.....Brooklyn,New York......Jacob Immanuel Schochet is a rabbi of Kielcer Congregation and a well-known authority on Jewish Philosophy and Mysticism.

"The teachings of the Kabbalah originally were restricted to 'Yechidei Segulah'....a chosen few whose saintliness matched their scholarship...R. Isaac Luria (1534-1572 AD) declared that as of then it was not only permissible but a duty to reveal Pnimiyut haTorah, the esoteric part of Torah."......Schochet (page 17)

Transhumanism: The History of a Dangerous Idea......Page 77.....By David Livingstone


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John Hopkins.....New Mexico


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