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Go Back   Spiritual Forums > Religions & Faiths > Judaism

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  #1  
Old 21-01-2014, 04:35 AM
Adept
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Judaism and Occultism

Has anyone else noticed that Judaism seems to have some correlation to modern occultism. I was raised Jewish and will never lose my heritage, I'm certainly proud of it. Yet I think it is also what boosted me completely into Thelema and Luciferianism. To start, Judaism is a rather "elitist" (I don't mean this negatively) in that we are proud, chosen, you can't just casually convert like with other religions. Also, Jewish mysticism. The Tree of Life may be the most important symbol in western occultism. And let's not forget openmindedness - Judaism evolves unlike other religions. We can take other paths, see the stories as metaphor, anything like that and it's just part of the religion.

Just a mini-thought-rant. Any thoughts?
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  #2  
Old 21-01-2014, 05:05 AM
Yamah
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Judaism is Exclusive but not necessarily Elitist. Important distinction. When someone's trying to convert we don't look for 'the best of the best' or the cream of the crop... we just check to see if the person will follow the rules (and knows what he's getting into).

Yes, the Tree of Life... adopted as the central symbol of Hermetics (and then twisted by poor understanding)... used as the 'big secret' of many societies, including The Order of the Golden Dawn (before being partially disseminated). Also the inspiration of Tarot cards, an important tool in modern occultism.
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  #3  
Old 21-01-2014, 05:14 AM
Adept
Posts: n/a
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yamah
Judaism is Exclusive but not necessarily Elitist. Important distinction. When someone's trying to convert we don't look for 'the best of the best' or the cream of the crop... we just check to see if the person will follow the rules (and knows what he's getting into).

Yes, the Tree of Life... adopted as the central symbol of Hermetics (and then twisted by poor understanding)... used as the 'big secret' of many societies, including The Order of the Golden Dawn (before being partially disseminated). Also the inspiration of Tarot cards, an important tool in modern occultism.

How can a symbol be twisted? The meanings aren't objective.
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  #4  
Old 21-01-2014, 05:24 AM
Albalida Albalida is offline
Ascender
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 751
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adept
Has anyone else noticed that Judaism seems to have some correlation to modern occultism. I was raised Jewish and will never lose my heritage, I'm certainly proud of it. Yet I think it is also what boosted me completely into Thelema and Luciferianism. To start, Judaism is a rather "elitist" (I don't mean this negatively) in that we are proud, chosen, you can't just casually convert like with other religions. Also, Jewish mysticism. The Tree of Life may be the most important symbol in western occultism. And let's not forget openmindedness - Judaism evolves unlike other religions. We can take other paths, see the stories as metaphor, anything like that and it's just part of the religion.

Just a mini-thought-rant. Any thoughts?

Judaic mysticism did form the basis of several traditions of Western Ceremonial Magick.

Modern occultism does also have influences from Core Shamanism (which could be more problematic because these practices were basically stolen from indigenous tribes who should have had option to be "elitist" because that would keep their sacred secrets respected), Theosophy (which in turn also has Eastern occult influences), science (every time we use the word "energy" in a woowoo sense of the term, Richard Dawkins' blood pressure goes up a little bit more), and now chaos magick (very modern tradition that incorporates pop culture references as Jungian keys to the magical psyche).

If you're proud of the influence, that might be a sign that it was done right. A lot of people from other source influences would look at what their culture has become in the occult and go "Are you serious??"
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  #5  
Old 21-01-2014, 05:30 AM
Yamah
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"How can a symbol be twisted? The meanings aren't objective."

That's how.
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  #6  
Old 21-01-2014, 05:43 AM
Adept
Posts: n/a
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yamah
"How can a symbol be twisted? The meanings aren't objective."

That's how.

Care to elaborate?
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  #7  
Old 21-01-2014, 07:31 AM
Yamah
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The Tree of Life is a set of symbols that represent Divine Truths. They have specific, objective meanings and associations.

Though many texts disagree on certain specifics they all agree on the generalities and their disagreements can usually be resolved by understanding that they approach the symbols from different perspectives.

The best example would be with the 4th symbol. The ancient name for it was 'Gedulah' or Greatness and the modern name for it is 'Chesed' or Kindness. Though the name for it has changed all sources agree that this symbol represents the force of Expansion. Nobody says it is a force of Contraction and there is no room whatsoever for saying so. The change of the name can be understood by following the perspectives used in Kabbalah through the ages and their nuances. Nonetheless, the general understanding remains the same.

In Hermetic Kabbalah the tree of life was taken in many different directions through gnosticism, so much so that all the meanings have been skewed. Even basics like how to apply it to the human body (traditionally Chesed is Right, Gevurah is Left; in Hermetic, Chesed is usually Left and Gevurah is usually Right) have been skewed. Many other things have been misinterpretted because the interpretters' understandings didn't have a proper foundation in Torah, Gemarah and other Jewish texts and usually didn't even have a good understanding of the Hebrew language and how it relates to the tree of life (an essential foundation).

Not having a proper foundation leaves the mind floating through the air, reaching conclusions without backing and following assumptions to half-truths which lead to drifting falsehoods. True Knowledge is like a Tree, not a cloud.
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  #8  
Old 21-01-2014, 07:36 AM
Adept
Posts: n/a
 
Objective implies a truth independent of the mind, of belief, etc. You can assign any symbolism to the tree of life you want, and for you, it'll be valid. That's the beauty of occultism. To say the ToL has an objective, proper way would be like saying a pentagram has one, objective meaning. It's restriction, ego, and if you've studied the tree you should see the flaw here.
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  #9  
Old 21-01-2014, 07:38 AM
Yamah
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PS. Albalida, When I started learning about Kabbalah from authentic sources I looked back at everything I knew from Hermetics and basically said exactly that... "Are you serious??"
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  #10  
Old 21-01-2014, 07:43 AM
Yamah
Posts: n/a
 
Adept: I understand your opinion makes sense to you from a gnostic hermetic perspective and, as I've stated, that perspective is antithetical to the Jewish understanding of the tree of life. The TREE of life.

Why do you think that name was chosen? A tree has roots; yes it grows, develops, blossoms and to an extent changes but the trunk is solid, and the roots are strong. If your understanding isn't a proper derivation of the source body of knowledge then you are no longer exploring the TREE, you are instead lost in your own ego and understanding, disconnected from the truth.
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