Kabbalah is the mystical teachings in Judaism that are mainly based on the Zohar (traditionally attributed to Rabbi Shimon Bar Yohai) and then later elaborated upon by others such as Rabbis Isaac Luria and Israel Baal Shem.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (2)

5
votes
0answers
118 views

Does 'not in heaven' apply to kabbalah?

There is a famous dictum: 'lo ba'shomayim he', meaning that after the torah was given at Sinai its rules, mandates and precepts are determined by man and not dictated by heaven. An example is when ...
5
votes
0answers
138 views

Maharal and Kabbala (a few questions)

Since the Maharal (born 1512) lived around the same time as the Arizal (born 1534), and it doesn't seem like they had any acquaintances. Which sources did the Maharal utilize when learning Kabala? ...
4
votes
2answers
266 views

Are there any female kabbalists?

Are there currently or have there been historically orthodox female kabbalists? If not is this a quirk of history or is there a specific reason?
4
votes
3answers
329 views

Differences of Opinion in the Order of the Ushpizin

The order of the Ushpizin according to the Zohar (Thank you Mekubal!) corresponds to the order of the Sefiros each one represents. Why does the Shelah disagree and place Yosef before Moshe, Aharon, ...
4
votes
1answer
193 views

Sources in Rishonim on the Authenticity of the Zohar

Are there any early contemporary discussions from the time of the revelation of the Zohar among recognized Rishonim about it's authenticity? I mention "among recognized Rishonim" because I am aware ...
4
votes
1answer
105 views

What is Shevirat Hakeilim?

Shvirat hakeilim seems to be a Kabbalistic concept denoting how the light was created within the Genesis account. However, I cannot seem to find information regarding it. Can someone please explain ...
4
votes
2answers
539 views

Rav Yaakov Moshe Hillel and wearing tzitzios out

Does someone know anything about Rav Yaakov Moshe Hillel shlita hamekubal stating that tzitzios should be worn outside the clothes? I read it once but without any sources on a web forum. It would be ...
4
votes
1answer
242 views

Playing with non-kosher animals

I have often heard it said that there is a tradition amongst kabbalists not to own, play with or possibly even look at animals that are not kosher. Assuming that this is correct, my question is ...
4
votes
1answer
174 views

Kiddush cup with the name of angels engraved on the inside

I just bought an antique kiddush cup in Yerushalayim with names of the angels written all throughout the inside on the whole length of the kiddush cup (in several columns around the cup). The store ...
4
votes
3answers
199 views

The essence of a thing is in its Hebrew name?

Based on this comment here. According to Kabbalah, how do physical objects derive their life-force from their Hebrew name, if Hebrew doesn't have names for everything?
4
votes
1answer
132 views

Learning Kabbalah & Yeshiva World

What are the principles for learning kabbalah in Ashkenaz Yeshiva world (Litvish/Yeshivish, non-hasidim)? I understand that Yeshiva bochurim do not learn kabbalah: in Yeshiva they concentrate solely ...
4
votes
1answer
73 views

What is the source and substance of the kabbalistic holiday on 17 Shevat?

In the work of Isiah Tishby he records a kabbalistically based holiday celebrated by the Ramchal and his followers on the 17th of Shevat. I'm looking for any further information on this holiday ...
4
votes
0answers
96 views

Sources for Hamsa

I know from Ben Ish Hai Shana Bet Parashat Pinehas siman 13 where he writes to make a Hamsa from wood. However, I am wondering if there any earlier sources to solidify the fact that this would ...
3
votes
3answers
168 views

What are the major ancient literature on Judaic mysticism and spiritual development?

What are the major ancient literature on Judaic mysticism and spiritual development? By ancient I mean B.C.E. I also would appreciate if you can also provide links to online English translations if ...
3
votes
3answers
446 views

Clairvoyant Powers

Recently met a certain Rabbi with clairvoyant powers. He was able to look at my name and tell me all sorts of spooky stuff. For example, that I have two mezuzas with problems. (I hired a sofer to ...
3
votes
1answer
62 views

What is the significance of “mayim nukvin” according to chassidus

What is the spiritual significance of "Mayim Nukvin" (feminine waters) according to Chassidus? I have seen it plenty of times in Tanya and various Maamarim, but I never really understood the concept.
3
votes
3answers
155 views

Does Jewish mysticism involve “feeling” G-d?

I have read an accusation from the Traditionalist Catholics that Modern Catholicism has changed under the influence of Judaism its understanding of the Holy Ghost. Modern day Catholicism together with ...
3
votes
2answers
105 views

Is there a list of Nusach -> Shevet correspondence?

It says in the introduction of the English Tehillas Hashem siddur (in the name of the Maggid of Mezeritch - Likutei Amarim 133) that each tribe has it's own Nusach (and the Nusach Arizal is the Shaar ...
3
votes
2answers
119 views

What does the concept of rehovot hanahar mean?

I have seen the phrase Rehovot HaNahar (wideness of the river) used, often in a kabbalistic context, but am not sure what it symbolizes. The phrase can be found in the shabbos song Kel Mistater (the ...
3
votes
2answers
103 views

Why is Sefer Yetzirah attributed to Avraham?

It seems fairly widely accepted that Sefer Yetzirah, one of the primary books of Kabbalah, is attributed to Avraham Avinu. Why is that?
3
votes
2answers
181 views

What are the three impure klippot?

Kabbalah and Chassidus discuss the "three impure klippot" and Klippos Noga. What is the difference between each of these three klippos?
3
votes
1answer
270 views

Who wrote Tohar HaYichud?

Who wrote the anonymous rationalist debunking of kabbalah entitled Tohar HaYichud?
3
votes
1answer
78 views

Painting the backs of tefillin straps black?

I've heard and seen religious Jews painting the backs of the tefillin straps black, and they claim a kabbalistic reason somewhere in the Schulchan Auruch. Does anyone know anything about this, the ...
3
votes
1answer
97 views

Place to study Zohar

What is a good place for an American to learn Zohar in person (anywhere internationally)? (This question is for a friend who is much more learned than I am).
3
votes
2answers
115 views

Source for saying Aramaic parts of davening quietly?

I remember reading somewhere that there is a kabbalistic tradition to say the parts of davening that are in Aramaic (e.g. the targum in Uva Letziyon) quietly. What is the source for this?
3
votes
1answer
117 views

Question on Terminology used in the Teaching of the Ari regarding Levels within the Highest Emanation

In Otzrot Hayyim, Sha'ar Tant"a (Ta'amim Nekudot Tagin Otiyot), in a description of Adam Kadmon, the first form taken by the line of light of the Infinite that enters the vacated space, it says that ...
3
votes
2answers
302 views

Is there a special significance of 4 directions as opposed to 6?

According to halacha, when a person says the word "echad" (אחד) in Shema: בדלי"ת צריך להאריך יותר כדי שיעור שיחשוב שהקב"ה יחיד בעולמו ומושל בד' רוחות העולם [One should] draw out the dale more ...
2
votes
3answers
290 views

Demon or Sheidim

My son since birth never has been peaceful. At around 1 year old he would stand on his crib while sleeping fighting who knew what and crying and crying, I tried to calm him and soothe him. But that ...
2
votes
2answers
164 views

How did Chazal know they were right about “who is a Jew”?

My question is predicated on the assumption that Jews were created by God as fundamentally different from non-Jews. (I am referring, for example, to the idea that Jews have a special type of soul. And ...
2
votes
3answers
87 views

Ramchal and Tzimtzum

Tzimtzum is a term said to be used in the teaching of Isaac Luria. It claims that God began the process of creation by "contracting" his infinite light in order to allow for a "conceptual space" in ...
2
votes
3answers
146 views

What was Hevel (Abel's) sin?

The Arizal says that Hevel was reincarnated many times to purify his sin. What was his sin?
2
votes
1answer
126 views

Where is it written in the Zohar that the Yishmaelites must have Eretz Israel until Mashiah comes?

I remember reading a paper where it was written that the Yishmaelites should have Eretz Israel until the coming of Mashiah according to the Zohar. Is it true ? If it is the case, where is it written ...
2
votes
1answer
216 views

Belief in Yechidah

According to Chabad.org, Yechidah connotes the essence of the soul--its unity with its source, the singular essence of G-d. For the essence of the soul of man is "literally a part of G-d ...
2
votes
1answer
93 views

Seforim of Ramchal

I have heard (and don't remember where) that the seforim of the Ramchal, Mesilas Yesharim, Derech Hashem, and Klash Pischei Chochma are meant to be as steps in a ladder (no pun intended) of learning. ...
2
votes
1answer
496 views

What coin is this?

It is a little over an inch diameter, thicker and heavier than any coin would be. The lettering almost seems random....or maybe the middle word is a name? Can someone help me identify this coin? ...
2
votes
1answer
117 views

What is the Zohar referring to when it speaks about 'Zer Anpin' (ז"א)?

The Zohar (and the Sulam even more so) refers to 'Zer Anpin', usually in relationship to other middos/bechinos such as Malchus. What does Zer Anpin mean?
2
votes
2answers
126 views

What is a Parzuf?

Can someone please explain in terms that a simple Jew can understand, the definition of the kabbalistic concept called a Partzuf?
2
votes
1answer
74 views

How are we to understand Lurianic Kabbalah?

We believe that the Torah is eternal and never-changing. And yet, the Arizal brought quite a number of innovations to our religion. Although none really change halacha, they certainly do build upon ...
2
votes
1answer
156 views

Days you shouldn't visit a cemetery

Someone told me you shouldn't visit a cemetery on Friday. Is this correct? More generally, are there any other days (holidays, events, etc) that you shouldn't go to a cemetery?
2
votes
1answer
69 views

Is there a tikkun to say/do when your relationship is in danger?

Has anyone come across a tikkun for a spouse during a separation?
2
votes
2answers
234 views

Red string on Tefillin arm?

I've heard a man shouldn't wear anything on his left arm (as a bracelet, watch, etc) while having tefillin tied on. If this is true, would it be completely wrong to wear a red string on the left arm ...
2
votes
0answers
128 views

Leaving the room during a kabbalistic dvar Torah

We learn from Maran HaRav Ovadia Yosef Z"l, as well as R' Hamburger Shlit"a, and the rest of the non-Chassidic, non-Lurianic world that it is improper for one unlearned in sha"s and halachah to learn ...
2
votes
0answers
72 views

Are there mystical underpinnings to Maccabi?

One of the explanations I have heard for the title מכבי is that it is an acronym for the pasuk 'מִי-כָמֹכָה בָּאֵלִם ה (Shemos 15:11). Is there any reason, mystical or otherwise that that pasuk (or ...
2
votes
2answers
278 views

From which side does Klipa come?

It says in some seforim, that Klipa "leeches" off the "right" side (since Gevura is about limitation, it can only give to one who is worthy, while Chesed, kindness, can give to everyone). On the ...
2
votes
2answers
150 views

Is there a “peshat”-style commentary on Chaim Vital's Etz Chayim?

Does there exist a commentary that explains the basic (if it weren't kabbalah i would say "peshat") of Chaim Vital's Etz Chayim (as opposed to a commentary "al derech ha-derush" which expands or ...
1
vote
2answers
153 views

What does this piece of jewelry say?

A classmate showed me a pendant that she recently acquired. It was described to her as representing some sort of blessing for marriage. None of the people who looked at it could figure out what the ...
1
vote
2answers
213 views

Validity of Houston Kabbalah centers?

For you Houstoners, there is a building on S Shepherd called "The Kabbalah Center" that uses a map of the 10 sefirot as it's logo. It looks like something that might exist in other cities. All the ...
1
vote
4answers
714 views

Ayin Hara - The evil eye - Hocus Pocus

There are people that do some sort of procedure with lead that they claim gets rid of Ayin Hara. Is this hocus pocus or true?
1
vote
1answer
92 views

Current Attitude Towards Sefer Raziel Hamalach

What is the current attitude of Kabbalists towards Raziel Hamalach? Is it considered a legitimate work of Kabbala? Is it studied? If not, why not?
1
vote
1answer
174 views

Was Shlomo Molcho a great kabbalist or a false messiah?

History records that a Portuguese Marano, Diego Peres (born 1500), after being spurned by Jewish adventurist David Reuveni, circumcised himself, changed his name to Shlomo Molcho, and went on a ...