Putting your belief where your existence is.Many have thought and think they have discovered the keys to the universe, mastered the fourth dimension and ready for complete liberation from the practical….
…When it is there, we are said to feel it “in our bones,” which is usually considered to be a response to the necessities of survival. To create order, especially an intellectual order,is a particularly significant human talent, and it has been suggested that mathematics is the science of total intellectual order. Graphic or visual order, pattern, or symmetry has been defined and analyzed in terms of the invariants of various transformation groups trying to corner the unknown. A mathematician, like a painter or a poet,” wrote G. H. Hardy, “is a master of pattern.” But what can one say about pattern as it occurs within mathematical discourse itself? Are mathematical theories of pattern self referring?
When scientists propose laws of wide generality they set forth rules of law in place of primeval chaos. When the artist draws his line, or the composer writes his measure, he separates, out of the infinitude of possible shapes and sounds, one which he sets before us as ordered, patterned, and meaningful….
Rick Salutin:Madonna’s mysticism: Kabbalah is a broad Hebrew term for every current in Jewish mysticism over a stretch of 2,500 years. It compares to, say, philosophy. Calling yourself a Kabbalist is about as informative as calling yourself a philosopher. Madonna, who played Toronto this week, has become Esther, as part of her adherence to “the” Kabbalah. The term now appears in media outlets the way “anarchism” did in the anti-globalization phase just before 9/11: widespread, vague and ill-defined….
…A Toronto Star piece said its “goal” is “knowledge of the divine” via a “finely shaded approach to experiencing God who conceals and reveals himself, who is both transcendent and immanent in the world.” Something scandalous lurks here since, in the Bible, God relates to the world only through His words. He never inheres in or is part of it. That is a key division between Bible-based religions and all others. When Kabbalists speculated on immanence, they flirted with pantheistic heresy. But you get none of that from the anodyne phrase, “conceals and reveals himself,” without context. Read More:http://www.gaudiyadiscussions.com/topic_2006.html
Firstly and most evidently, there is entirely too much flaky, half baked ill conceived and expressed rubbish in this domain. The actual knowledge, if ever there was any, has long ago been lost in translation, both literally and deliberately such as DaVinci’s code. Also, because very simply the true knowledge and experience is highly personal and individual, it is not meant for vulgarization.
Ironically, the secret societies further contributed to this with all their ritual, pomp and mumbo-jumbo to the point that whatever “meaning” is or may have been there is likely for the most part lost and incomprehensible. Time to get serious: That Madonna is “into” Kabbalah -numerology, geomancy- is good for her alone, if in fact she is a “believer”. What is not clear is what there actually is to “believe”. Belief in and of itself is for the most part meaningless or irrelevant, but that is an entirely different area of discussion.
Ray Tyler: It’s true value lies in doing one’s own thinking. Nicolas of Cusa ( 1450) believed that the true love of God is “amor Dei intellectualis” and that the intellectual act through which the divine is revealed is mathematics- the divine is to be reached through…”thinkliness” However my take: you can lead a horse to water but you cannot make it drink; you can lead a man to reason but you cannot make him think :)
From Pascal Wager: Regardless of God’s state of existence, likely a factor of perception of knowledge i.e. faith, belief seems preferable to non-belief. The only unambiguous, non-contradictory choice, the only way with any significant payoff of benefit, is to bet on God’s existence, putting your belief where your existence is. At the very least you are affirming that you are in some way a part of God, which of course presumes you in fact exist. Whether you think or not as DesCartes put it. Pascal didn’t seem too concerned as to confirming the existence of either oneself or God for that matter. ( Ray Tyler )
Yet really, what’s wrong with inserting another version of spirituality into this forlorn world, even if it’s a bit stupid and commercialized (“Kabbalah water from very pure springs”)? Well, calling a thing spiritual doesn’t make it so, any more than using the word Kabbalah means you’ve actually said something. At times, spirituality feels like another word for privatization: the reduction and introjection of the public or social to tiny personal size….
…Once, after a class in Jerusalem, I asked Gershom Scholem, the giant of modern Kabbalah studies, why he did it, what was its “relevance.” He scowled, then barked, “Because it interests me. That is all! It has no relevance.” He pretty much tossed me out. I guess he smelled a rat. Read More:http://www.gaudiyadiscussions.com/topic_2006.html