Kabbalah and Psychology ©

I discussed Kabbalah many years ago on the Institute’s international radio show, Mind, Brain, and Body with the Good Doctor. If you go to our website, you will find several recordings from the show and some written discourses concerning Kabbalah from my perspective.  The Rav I know best is Michael Laitman who founded Bnei Baruch in the early 1990s.  The members I have dealt with are serious students.

I do not consider myself a Kabbalist, though, my friends, who are serious Kabbalists, claim that what I teach is fully consistent with true Kabbalah. Curiously, my Christian theologian friends claim that I am a mystical Christian as what I teach is found in the New Testament. Other friends swear I am a Magus. So much for ‘labels’ eh?

I suggest you reread my teaching tale, the Tower of Babel, which is on the Institute website and on my blog. Truth is subtle and consistent; it has no need for separatist cognitive labels so to identify it with one school or another.

Many believe that the Hidden Teachings revolve around the developing of ‘psychic power (iddhi in Pali)’ to be utilized for personal advantage, i.e., to seek power, fame, or wealth. Others believe that the Ancient Knowledge is about the actual nature of creation with its several layers of experience. Unfortunately, very few seekers understand that Esoteric Knowledge is meant to be used by a seeker so to develop and grow his or her soul personality, while living in the physical world–nothing else. The Gospels are not about the actual physical life of Jesus, they describe and teach one how to deal with one’s inner man Pharisees, demons, helpers, and trials. Esoteric Knowledge is psychological in the ancient sense.

Back to Lurianic Kabbalah. Briefly, the course of instruction at BB follows the Kabbalah of Isaac Luria (16th century), as codified and expanded by the 20th century Rabbi Yehuda Ashlag in his Commentary on the Book of Zohar. If you have an interest, Google BB and check out their Kabbalah archives.

This Kabbalah teaches that Creator withdrew a portion of His Essence from a region in Ein Sof (the Limitless) creating a central void in which Primordial Man (Adam Kadmon) and all the countless worlds (Olamot) emerge. From Primordial Man emanate ten archetypal states (Sefirot) and twenty-two Holy Letters (Otiyot Yesod) as building blocks of the psychical universe, i.e., the Light of Bestowal. [Kabbalah does not speak about physical creation even though the names relate to physical items.]

The Wholeness of the emanating Light first forming Vessels for Reception (Kelim) built for the reception of further emanations (Ohr Ein Sof). For some unknown reason, the Kelim was unable to contain the added light and fractured and scattered in what is called the Catastrophe known as the Breaking of the Vessels (Shevirat ha-Kelim). This rupture in the cosmic psychological universe caused a separation of the unity into duality, a split between the masculine and the feminine aspects of Creator and Adam Kadmon.

The broken vessels tumbled downward, being scattered within the void, entrapping such individualized sparks in shrouds of darkness comprising the Sitra Achra [leftovers of a failed prior Catastrophe]. The world soul, instead of containing the pristine archetypal values of Wisdom, Understanding, Knowledge, Love, Judgment, Beauty . . . , now contained the broken, displaced, and obscured lights and vessels as they coalesced as Quippoth (Husks). As a result, our world (Assiyah) is the worst of all possible worlds in which there is still hope.

As a result of the Breaking of the Vessels, the Primordial Adam was shattered into a multitude of individual souls, each comprised of the same fragments that form our world and exiled and alienated within the Sitra Achra (the Negative Tree). The inner work of each man and woman is to extract those sparks that are his or her fortune to encounter in life, and to raise and spiritualize them. If all persons are successful, they shall reconstitute the Sefirot and rebuild Primordial Man with his five Partzufim (Visages or Faces of Creator), restoring the harmony of the opposites, as well as the conjugal relations between the masculine and feminine aspects of God, man and the world.

Clearly, the above story is a psychological one as it applies individually and collectively to the psychological and conscious evolution of mankind and not the physical world.

Chaos Theory, Fate, and Destiny

Having a scarcity of time to produce new blogs during the day, I found myself composing this blog in my dreamtime. So here goes.

Fate or Destiny? A perpetual conundrum, “What are they? How do I know which is which? Does it matter? Is human life predetermined and set? Does man possess free will or does he possess wise choice? Are the life experience of humans chaotic or not? Why is it so difficult to decide?”

The optimal starting point for resolving such questions begin with a very brief introduction to chaos theory. Chaotic systems follow deterministic laws of motion, but, are highly unpredictable over time (the uncertainty increasing exponentially with elapsed time). The behavior of the system after two or three system time constants appears stochastic to an observer (but, are not random systems as such  demonstrate a randomly distributed error function). Moreover, some chaotic systems are under the influence of particular basins of attraction such that observables trace similar paths in phase space.

Persons adept in self-observation of moment-to-moment changes in the states of the body, emotions, desires, and cognitions report that the proximal causes for every psychological and physiological action are preprogrammed and respond to innate or learned triggering events. Each moment-to-moment experience is no more than a highly complex and layered ‘stimulus-evaluation-response-patterned activity’ (SERPA).

Such changes progressing smoothly over time and without the intercession of conscious direction. If we were not so perfectly programmed by physical evolution none of us would be alive today.

It is not an overstatement to claim that, over most of the day, each of us are psychobiological robots! So we can be said to be psychologically determinate creatures.

I know some of you will disagree with me and claim that you are conscious right now. This may be true, but such does not change the truth of what I have said. If you do not believe learn self-observation and tell me I am wrong after daily practice for three months.

Like any programmed machine, given repetitive sets of closely related stimuli, we automatically active the same SERPA and act the same. We make the same mistakes, interact with the wrong people, feel abused and violated, and so on. So our life histories repeat themselves (not exactly) year after year as we remain bound by our own conditioned, psychological basins of attraction formulated over childhood.

This is the true meaning of karma–living as a lower creature fully dependent upon your personalized set of ‘controlling basin(s) of attraction.’ Karma operates automatically and casually in this life now. Only a stream enterer needs concern himself or herself with a future life experience.  Remember the Devil’s Tale in Heidelberg.

So, on first blush, we can liken ourselves to chaotic systems moving about our individual psychological basins of attraction. And you continue, day after day and year after year, to robotically follow the paths set by your unrecognized basin of attraction (in your mental and emotional phase space) and suffer so much unnecessary and detrimental suffering and pain.

This, dear Reader, is the true esoteric meaning of the term Fate; but, Fate need not be permanent or is it preassigned to you by three witches weaving a thread or boiling a cauldron. Changing your Fate, or more accurately placing yourself under a more appropriate set of laws, is a teachable skill and concerns the Path of Work with the Institute. At the Institute you will learn how to become more than a robot and how to exercise wise choice.

Destiny is not a kind of Fate. As Fate is not preassigned at birth, neither is Destiny. Everyone suffers Fate, but, not everyone has a Destiny. Destiny is a state of being which must be earned via super efforts in Study and Work. Destiny is born following immersion into the stream of enlightenment so to locate and swallow the seed of immortality so to become a cosmically significant being. A man or woman of Destiny has made an immortal soul.

A person having a Destiny can begin to work for the salvation of our species.

A Visit to Judgment Hall

A very long time ago, when I was four or five years old, I lived in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Every day, I went across the street to my neighbor to have red beans and rice during the midday meal. But, most of the time, I strolled the streets on adventures. Nothing much of significance happened other than having mumps and the removal of my tonsils and adenoids. Ether inhalation is a very weird thing to do for sure.

However, one night after I fell asleep, I found myself standing at the Gates of Heaven and talking to the gatekeeper. He told me he was St. Peter and one of his jobs was to greet new souls when they arrived. Naturally, I asked him, “Mr. Peter, why am I here? I am only a kid and was fine when I went to bed.”

St. Peter responded, “Michael, you must have died last night since you are here.”

I replied, “Funny, but I don’t feel dead at all. My body seems quite solid to me.”

“Regardless of the details, you wouldn’t be here unless you died,” replied St. Peter, “and that is that.”

“OK, Mr. Peter. Where do I go now?” I said.

“Well, young fellow, you must go to the Judgment Hall to have your sins weighed,” said St. Peter.

“I replied. That seems very dumb to me, Mr. Peter. How much sin can a four year old commit, anyway? Don’t they have playgrounds around here or red beans with rice?”

And with that, St. Peter grabbed my right hand and walked me quickly to the Judgment Hall and told me to sit down in a pew and be quiet until my name was called. I was wondering whom I was going to talk too anyway as everyone else was grown up and I did not know them.

So I decided to see what was going on. I noticed that God was sitting behind a judge’s bench and there were two tables in front of his bench. At my left was an angel who was to recite the major events in some person’s life and which showed up on a giant TV screen. The person being judged sat to the right at his or her bench.

When the prosecutor angel was done, God looked kindly at the person on trial and asked him or her where they wanted to spend eternity, in Heaven or in Hell. The persons who had lived a kind life chose Heaven and those who lived a mean life chose Hell. And each one seemed very happy with his or her decision, thanking God as they left.

Eventually, I heard my name called and I walked up to the right bench and sat down. The prosecutor angel looked at me with a funny expression on his face. I raised my hand and God said, “Michael, you have a question?”
I stood up saying, “Hello, Mr. God. I hope you are well. I really don’t know why I am here as I am only four years old and haven’t done anything bad or really good. I told Mr. Peter this and he said I had to talk to you anyway. May I ask you a question, please?”

God laughing to himself, smiled saying, “Of course, lad, you may ask me any questions you want to. We have nothing, but time.”

I began, “Mr. God, Mr. Peter put me in the back. I saw that many people come to be judged. But, I do not understand why this place is called the Judgment Hall since you just let people go to the place they liked the best.”

God looked down at me with sparkling eyes saying, “You are right, my lad. I never judge anyone for I love everyone. The people who come here think they must be judged so we just have a pretended trial to make them happy with their choices. You are a very bright little boy, Michael. Is there anything you would like from me?”

I had to think about this for I did not want to ask for something stupid. At last, I looked up to God saying, “Mr. God, I think you must have a very difficult job to watch over the entire universe. I was wondering, if maybe, maybe you could use a helper? I am not very big yet and need to learn many more things, but, I don’t tell lies and I try not to cause any trouble for anyone . . . and I do eat vegetables. If you helped me, I would be a good helper, I am sure.”

Then, God stood up and went to the front of his bench and stood right next to me. “So Michael, you want to be my helper, really? No one has ever asked to be my helper. But, it is a very good idea and I think it might just work. I think we should shake hands and make a deal, don’t you.”

God extended his right hand and we shook on the deal. I said, “Thanks, Mr. God. I will be a good helper, but, don’t I need to go to helper school?”

God said, “Actually, I am going to send you back to Earth so you can live a long life and be a real help to me. But, don’t worry, I will make sure the angels teach you many good things and make you a strong helper. But, you need to learn how to be a warrior also.”

I smiled, “Mr. God, can I be a Viking–a good Viking, I mean?”

All the angels in the Judgement Hall laughed in the kindest way. One of them came up to me and said that his name was just like my name, Michael. He said, “OK, my little Viking warrior. I will return you to your bedroom and watch over you. You will have many fights to bear, but I will teach you all that you need. But, never-ever let your heart grow cold or mean. Promise?”

And I promised Angel Michael that I would always be a good Viking and fight fairly and take care of people who are afraid and hurt or crying. And the next thing I knew it was time to get up in the morning. It was more than a dream. I am sure. And I am glad I am a nice Viking.
I guess this is why the very old Grannies in Ukraine believe that I am an Angel on the earth. Maybe I am.

The Golden Dawn, the AA, and Beelzebub

During my university career, I transferred a few times. I had begun at Brown University with a merit-scholarship and stayed my freshmen year. As they did not have a program in Chemical Engineering, I transferred to UC Santa Barbara for a quarter and then to UC Berkeley for a year. I returned to UC Santa Barbara as I found the professors more amenable to my desires.

The department head, Dr. Myers allowed me to complete both my junior and senior year courses at the same time. This left time for independent research my last year.

It was the year of the draft lottery and my number was 19. I was only able to complete two quarters of independent research as I was drafted and so returned to Northern California and went to my induction appointment in Oakland. Fortunately, I had fractured my 5th cervical vertebra at Brown in the wee hours of the morning, having fallen over the 4th floor banister and onto the steps just above the 3rd floor. The last thing I remembered was hoping that I did not fall between the railings as that would have really hurt!

I heard a loud thud when my upper back and neck struck the red rubber lined wooden stairs. It was a very old dormitory located on Thayer St, Providence, RI. The thud brought me to consciousness and I realized that it was most amazing that I was not dead! As I lay there, my feet faced up the stairs and my neck and back were on the landing. All of a sudden I was surrounded by students as a party had been in progress on the 4th floor. A basketball player from Springfield College picked me up and over his right shoulder. I yelled, put me down–this is killing my stomach.

So he put me down and steadied me as I return to my room on the first floor. I opened the door and told my roommate John (who was involved with a young lady) that I had just fallen off the 4th floor to the 3rd floor and needed to go to bed. And this is what I did.

Skipping over the remainder of my freshman year, I found the sequellae of my injury was constant, sharp, and stabbing pains in my shoulders and neck. Fortunately, as I did not know any thing about drugs, I came to the conclusion that I guess the pain was here to stay. So I made peace with it and decided to continue doing sports and getting along with my life as if the pain was not there.

The pain never went away while I was in university–and some days it was intolerable-but, most of the time I just forgot about it. My shoulder hurt, yes, but, I did not have any significant amount of suffering. It finally resolved itself some 15 years after the injury for reasons unknown.

The injury turned out to have a good side as it kept me from being drafted. I remember waling toward the exit door on the ground floor of the induction center and a brother asked me why I was smiling. I told him I been rejected from the Army and he congratulated me. We parted and as I walked to the exit, I realized how unfair human life truly is. I thought, “Here is a nice man, undereducated, but with a good heart. He is going to die in Vietnam and I will not. Not that I am better than he, but, only because I had the advantage of foresight and education so to make a plan to avoid serving in the armed forces by insuring that my injury had a long medical treatment history.”

My induction day in Oakland, CA was indeed an eye opener of a day!

The reason I brought the matter of the injury up is that I would be at home for some time. Five months before starting graduate school at MIT in Boston, MA and three months before a summer job in Delta, PA working on construction of the Peach Bottom Nuclear Power Plant.

So I decided to study the occult material of the Golden Dawn , as I had found an early copy of Francis Israeli Regardie’s The Golden Dawn. I was a diligent student and prepared all required magical paraphernalia–including, lotus wand, sword, and a set of Enochian Angelic Tablets. I prepared and completed all the Temple Grade rituals as best I could, given my limited monies and talents. I do not remember having any fears about my results.

During this time interval, I contacted Regardie so to locate whether or not Crowley’s AA still functioned. Surprisingly, Regardie replied by sending me a very cryptic note with name and address of another person. I wrote to the second initiate(?) and received another name and address. I continued to follow the path and at last introduced by letter to the secretary of an AA chapter in Los Angeles, CA. The man’s name was John.

John and I began correspondence and I was provided more information as to occult practices. After several months, I was invited to come to the bookshop where the AA was headquartered and participate in an evocation of Beelzebub. John said that this invitation was a very high honor and a catapult.

I did attend such evocation on the scheduled night. As it was impossible for me to physically travel to LA, I accomplished a presence using bilocation, or astral projection.

I will not go into the ritual details of the evocation, as occult practices are often damaging to unprepared psyches, other than to say it was a resounding success. And most entertaining!  Demons are quite misunderstood creatures.

I continued to toy with the occult world experience for a few more months so to continue my experiences. Modifying the rituals using my intuition, I was able to evoke the shades of past historical greats, study with discarnate occult masters, speak with elementals, and even partake of the favors of succubi.

But, in the end, I came to the conclusion that occultism was just dream world manipulation. Moreover, I really never was taught anything significant as to the actuality of human life. So, I left the occult arts to the occultists and began the study of the mystic path of the Rosicrucian Order, AMORC. It was more attuned with my particular personality.

Though, at times the occult arts have proven useful tools for spiritual growth.

Starry, Starry Night

I feel that I owe everyone a blog, so while I am involved in legal stuff, I will fill you in with some curious stories of my life.  All absolutely true outside of memory lapses.  I trust you all shall be entertained!

Before and after my birth, my father and mother worked in Saudi Arabia, being employed by ARAMCO. I was born November 1, 1949, at 13:57 Apparent Solar Time. The place of my birth being Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. Here is the story I was told by my father as to my birth when I turned 13 years old.

My father had spent the day inspecting a new section of oil pipeline. He was returning home and noticed that a large sand storm was up ahead and quickly approaching. He knew of a small oasis ahead and decided to park the car near the date palms. Speeding up, he shortly arrived at the oasis. As he parked his car, he saw that three camels secured in the date trees.

He parked the car and saw three Bedouins seating around a campfire and drinking cups of kawa (Arabic coffee). He approached them and requested, in good Arabic, permission to join them.

The three Bedouins stood up as he approached. One, extending his right hand, greeted my father with the traditional “As-Salamu-Alaykun.”

Too which my father, shaking hands, replied, “Wa-Alaikum-Salaam.” He shook hands with the two other gentlemen and sat down to the campfire.

The Bedouin who first spoke sat across from my father. He broke the desert silence saying, “We have been waiting for you since midday. It is us who rose the sand storm between you and home. It will be here shortly.”

The Bedouin to the right of my father handed him a cup of unsweetened coffee and a small brass plate with dates. Taking the coffee, my father said, “shukran.”

The elder Bedouin continued, “Friend Iidghar, my brothers and I are holy men living in the desert distance from here. Six months ago, I noticed an unusual conjunction of the planets with some background stars. I noticed such to my two friends here, who are very accomplished readers of the sky. After much discussion, we came to the conclusion that Allah the Merciful was going to bring an Angel to earth in a human body. For all of us know that Mohammed was the last prophet and no more shall be given to the world.”

My father drunk his coffee and ate his dates while the elder Bedouin continued.

“Friend Iidghar, in our dreams, Gabriel, came to each of us and told us where to find the father of the Angel to be born. He who was to be known as ‘the Reminder of Truth. And so Gabriel told all three of us where to find you, friend Iidghar.”

My father knew not what to say and so remained silent. The brother to his left continued, “This child will be born on your day, November 1, 1949, 2 hours after the sun reaches its peak in the sky. You shall name him, Mikaeel. Though, he be sent by Allah the Merciful, he must be raised without religious upbringing so he will not fall pray to prejudice in any path to the Lord. His religion shall be of his own making and so be true.”

Soon they found themselves surrounded by the sand storm, but in the oasis it was calm. My father told me later that he was most amazed. He had heard of such tales, but he had thought such to be myths of the desert.

My father said he was told many things by the holy men, but, was prohibited from telling me. So what I tell you, is what was told me. Nothing more. The story stands alone for I cannot verify it. But, it does seem to fit my life in many ways. You, the reader, shall have to judge based upon what is in your heart.


Hello friends.  No time for a path of study blog, just something new on the website.  I have added an autobiographical section recalling some of the strange experiences I have lived through.  Such experiences being part of another life I entered in very early childhood and have explored for many years.  I am blessed to possess an equal twin opposing my earthly and pragmatic side.  Such twin operating within the mystical and occult realms of psychic experience.  Consequently, I live with a bicameral mind, a mind allowing me to work in both worlds simultaneous–which was rather strange until I got use to being such.

In Institute terms, I managed to fully merge types I-d and I-n realities into a single mental state, removing contradictions in my type II reality so to allow type III reality to begin functioning.  The old occultists would say that I possess an astral vessel.

This updates are found in the Teaching Tales page of the website at freedomexercises.org.

Explaining Self: Psychospiritual Significance

Some Readers may be of the opinion that I spent an inordinate amount of time explaining: [1] the reality of self and self-ascribed operations, [2] common misconceptions as to the existence of individualized, permanent spiritual selves, [3] the operational meaning of the psychological term, ego, as a transient psychoneurological function (a verb) and not an objective entity (an action noun), [4] cognitive presence as the touchstone for our innate, formless feeling of existence and beingness, [5] the imago operators and the virtual worlds created by their conjoint operation, [6] how the proto-imago (somataffective sensations) and autobiographical memory function together so to form an objective, somataffective vessel demonstrating in time, continuity, contiguity, and causality, regardless of incremental physical changes, and [7] how the operational imago, with its feeling of unity, permanence, and surety, arises after the cognitive presence merges with the somataffective vessel.

If you have come to truly understand what I am teaching, then, you shall exclaim with me:

Voilá! Et avec cela, votre âme est née!

Moreover, this ‘living’ somataffective vessel, this holy soul, this aphysical self, or supreme ‘I am’, is the most important entity associated with your physical body in this lifetime. It is not permanent, but believes itself so; it is not divine, but believes itself so; it is what suffers mental anguish and pain; it believes it possesses free choice, but normally acts as a zombie; but, in truth, is no more than a psychofugal artefact, an underutilized epiphenomenon, and another figment of our virtual existence.

Attention! Cette âme est le seul véhicule à l̀illumination et Dieu.

For you see, dear friends, the secret to enlightenment is NOT in the physical world per se. True, without the physical there would be no instrument for attaining enlightenment, but the vehicle must not be mistaken for the resultant. And the resultant is found only within the aphysical [one day I will explain what I mean when I use this term in its brilliant splendor]. Trickery, indeed.

I would suggest reviewing these blogs frequently and contemplating upon the two sentences I wrote in French. I have answered the question from yesterday completely.

L̀homme fait son âme, pas Dieu.

I will be taking several days off from our journey upon the Path of Study. I need to allow you all some time to review and contemplate upon this new knowledge and to provide some time for the lessons to take root within your unconscious minds so that the branches may form in your preconscious. Rushing is always a bad gardening technique.

In addition, I need to finalize a Writ of Mandamus to have a superior court Judge overruled! Isn’t enlightenment fun–always the mundane remains?

The next subject, I will discuss is the true inner significance of the Kabbalist Teachings–call it Neo-Kabbalah, if you would like.