The Kabbalah of Preventing War
by Nechama S.G. Nadborny-Burgeman
For the sake of this discussion, let's assume that all of humanity agrees
that G-d gave the Torah to the People of Israel, that Moses is a true
prophet, and that all the words of the Torah are true. Let us also assume
that everyone agrees that the Torah is a divine instruction for guiding
all of humanity to redemption, at which time there will be an end to all
suffering, whether it be war, disease or any type of human catastrophe.
Many have difficulty honoring the truth of Israel's unique spiritual
role in relationship to the world - even many Jews. However, it is incumbent
upon us to transcend this mental block as well as Israel's assimilated
apology for being different. All we have to do is look at world history
and we see that these mentalities have not brought a solution. Many civilizations
(e.g. the Roman and the Greek) have risen and fallen. None have offered
a lasting solution to lead humanity to peace and harmony. If it is so
difficult for many of us to humble ourselves to the idea that Israel does
have a separate and distinct role in alleviating world suffering and in
leading world redemption, then we must consider at what price for humanity
are we willing to hold on to our "liberal" ideas?
So too, at what price will Israel hold on to her false humanity of being
no different than the rest of the world? If a brain surgeon insists he
has the same function as a heart surgeon, is he going to argue the point
while the patient dies during the debate? We're not claiming qualitative
superiority, rather, recognition of a distinct function in healing humanity
as we return to our true united self. Every archetypal nation is a vital
organ and plays a vital function in the survival of all of humankind.
It is not a question of superiority vs. inferiority, but rather complimentary
differences. When we recognize this truth we have a chance to establish
harmony and well being for all of humankind.
G-d never planned for Israel to be like other nations. "You are
a nation of priests". (Ex. 19:6) However, as a political entity with
a human army, we are often regarded as many of Israel erroneously regard
ourselves, as being a nation like other nations. Even so, G-d's miraculous
protection of us in our land is still apparent. Yet we are still challenged,
for the sake of our survival, to define and live our unique, intended
role as a holy "nation of priests". Priests have congregations.
Israel, as "priests", has a specific role to play in relation
to the congregation of humanity.
The claim of Israel's separate and distinct role arouses the fear of
racism. This is a valid fear. However the ingathering of Israel's exiles
reaches out to all nations and races. Since individuals who wish to convert
and join the Jewish people have only certain spiritual requirements to
fulfill, their country of origin and skin color are totally irrelevant.
" All of humanity shares their source in the collective soul of Adam
The congregation of humanity is one collective whole whose shared collective
unity is declared in the teachings of the Kabbala. The Arizal explains
that all of humanity shares their source in the collective soul of Adam
and Eve, the first human couple. What is Israel's distinction really about?
What is the mission of those souls who identify directly with Israel?
As we individually connect with the source of our soul, we will re-experience
our essential oneness-the consciousness we all shared in the Garden of
Eden. In the very life-pulse of our hearts, we yearn for the primal closeness
and intimacy. It is our passion to experience this oneness, and live according
to this consciousness that will bring the final redemption. In this consciousness,
we find ourselves of reflections of one another.
However, we are struggling with the consciousness of "Adam Beliy'al",
the pre-shadow psyche that was formed in the World of Tohu, the world
that was created before ours. This primitive consciousness does not grasp
the reality of a Creator and our responsibility as created beings in relationship
to each other and our Creator.
The Arizal explains that the moment Adam and Eve ate from the Tree of
Knowledge of Good and Evil, the united soul of Adam and Eve splintered
and shattered. The resulting sparks intermingled with Adam Beliy'al. From
head to toe, billions of sparks of the soul of Adam and Eve became enmeshed
in the parallel limbs of Adam Beliy'al.
This cosmic drama is the source of humanity's experience of exile, pain
Adam's unified consciousness was transformed into the kaleidoscopic consciousness
of the seventy archetypal nations. Humanity's collective soul thus became
enclothed in all of the varieties of cultural skins.
When Adam and Eve gave birth to sons and daughters, the elements of their
soul that expressed the original light, a consciousness which embraced
their Creator and their obedience to His Will, were extracted from the
elements of their soul that retained the potential to express that light
but did not recognize the existence of the Creator.
Their descendants embodied either the original light elements of their
soul or more opaque elements. This process of soul clarification continued
20 generations until Abraham was the first to actualize this latent soul
potential by deliberately discovering the one G-d hidden in reality. Through
his descendants, the line of Israel emerges. The seed of Abraham and Sarah,
Isaac and Rebecca, Jacob and Rachel, Leah, Bilha and Zilpa became the
inheritors of the consciousness of one Creator. In addition Abraham and
Sarah created the souls of converts when they engaged in marital relationships
but did not actually conceive children. These souls were born into the
world's cultures and are challenged with a unique path to discover their
Seventy souls, descendants of the line of Israel, descended to Egypt.
Six hundred thousand were redeemed and brought to Mt. Sinai to receive
the Torah. The Torah guides Israel and ultimately all of humanity in the
process of reparation and return, to a level even higher than that of
the Garden of Eden.
The Arizal explains that just as Adam had 365 sinews and 248 limbs (total
613), each paralleling a corresponding spiritual limb. The same was true
of Adam Beliy'al. Israel's intimate relationship with the Creator is consummated
through living according to Divine will as manifested through the 613
Divine commandments of the Torah (248 positive commandments and 365 negative),
each organically rooted in the 248 limbs and 365 sinews of Adam.
There are commandments that are specific to men, to women, to those who
live in the Land of Israel, to the priestly tribe and to the time of the
Third Temple. As we fulfill the commandments that relate specifically
to each one of us, we enliven ourselves and all of humanity. In essence
we are reclaiming Adam and Eve's consciousness from that of Adam Beliy'al.
In essence, by keeping the commandments we are transforming and restoring
consciousness. However, it is not always easy to grasp the metaphysical
effects that each mitzvah has. The mitzvot of the Torah are Israel's instructions
for picking up the pieces of our one collective soul that shattered and
fell from the Garden. Israel has been assigned the task to study, guard,
teach and perform these commandments. The rest of humankind has been commanded
to keep the seven mitzvot of the Children of Noah (Bnei Noach) in addition
to discovering their unique contribution to redemption. Through the teachings
of the Kabbala, all of the details of the mitzvot are appreciated and
understood as being an essential part of the process of transforming reality
to its perfected state. Only in this way can our unity and harmony be
restored peacefully. If we do not consciously participate in this process
we fall into the prophetic warnings of war and suffering.
If we do not make the connection between the spiritual teachings of the
Kabbala and the physical performance of the mitzvoth, G-d forbid, we either
have lights without vessels (i.e. study without doing) or vessels without
light (doing without the proper intentions of making unifications between
the Upper Worlds and the Lower World). Israel's unique role as "a
nation of priests" is to transform physicality so that it may return
to the original situation of "form expressing essence" ? "body
expressing soul". Separation and disparity cease to exist as we transform
to a lasting state of unity and harmony with each other and with our One
May our enemies, within and without, who are distracting Israel from
fully carrying out her unique role, become supporters of this priestly
process of transformation. May all of Israel who understand and value
the 613 commandments, return home and light the path for others.
[Nechama S.G. Nadborny-Burgeman, www.NechamaSarahGila.com, is the author
of The Twelve Dimensions of Israel, and of Israel and the Seventy Dimensions
of the World a Kabbalistic approach to an Enduring World Peace
from which all quotes in this essay are taken]