The 13 Rungs of the Heavenly Ladder

What is the measure of love? There are many romantic and philosophical answers to that 3D-Fire-Heart-black-wide-wallsquestion, but Kabbalah traces all answers to their roots and love in Hebrew is Ahava (EHBH) of numerical value 13, in Kabbalistic tradition, a lucky number.

Tracing the number 13 back to its spiritual source, we see that there are 13 letters in the 3 iterations of the spelled out letter Yud (Y), the first letter in the ineffable Name of G-d, the YHVH, connecting to divine wisdom (Chochma) at its highest level.

Y

YVD

YVD VYV DLT

Together these 13 letters that create an expansion on the highest aspect of G-d’s Name add up to 506, the numerical value of Ahavat Chinam, unconditional love. According to the Arizal, spelling out, or filling out a Name adds power (koach) to that Name.  506 is also the complete value of Moshiach Ben David (the Messiah) and is also deeply associated with the Ana B’koach (42 Letter Name of G-d).

It’s no coincidence that the all-important 13 verses of the 10 Commandments begin in Exodus 20:2 with a 13-letter phrase of G-d saying, “I am God, your Lord (Anochi Adonai Elohaycha, ENCY YHVH ELHYC).”

Or that the Torah gives us the 13 Attributes of Mercy, showing us G-d’s unconditional love, amongst other special gifts (yet another article).

ו  וַיַּעֲבֹר יְהוָה עַל-פָּנָיו, וַיִּקְרָא, יְהוָה יְהוָה, אֵל רַחוּם וְחַנּוּן–אֶרֶךְ אַפַּיִם, וְרַב-חֶסֶד וֶאֱמֶת. 6 And the LORD passed by before him, and proclaimed: ‘The LORD, the LORD, God, merciful and gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth;
ז  נֹצֵר חֶסֶד לָאֲלָפִים, נֹשֵׂא עָו‍ֹן וָפֶשַׁע וְחַטָּאָה; וְנַקֵּה, לֹא יְנַקֶּה–פֹּקֵד עֲו‍ֹן אָבוֹת עַל-בָּנִים וְעַל-בְּנֵי בָנִים, עַל-שִׁלֵּשִׁים וְעַל-רִבֵּעִים. 7 keeping mercy unto the thousandth generation, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin; and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children’s children, unto the third and unto the fourth generation.’

“..and the measure of my days, what it is” Pslams 39:5

According to the Arizal, the secret meaning of the verse “..and the measure of my days, what it is” is the equalization of Zeir Anpin and Malchut that occurred in the times of the Holy Temple and that will occur again at the end of days in the time of the Third Holy Temple. In the understanding of the Ari’s explanation we’re given that the Hebrew word for Temple, as in the 2 previous Holy Temples and the Future one, Mikdash (MKDSh) is spiritually equivalent to the word for measure, Midat (MDT), both of which have a gematria value of 444.

In his discussion in Shaar HaPsukim about the above mentioned Psalm, the Arizal explains that teh significance of 444 is that it is the sum of the 4 Alephs (ELP), each of numerical value 111, that are the initials of the 4 iterations of Eyheh (EHYH), the Name of G-d associated with Binah (Imma).

Rav Ashlag, also know as HaSulam (“the Ladder”) saw the number 444 as 444 years, ladder_to_heavensince this was .666 of 666 or 2/3 of 2/3 in his revelation about the timing for the arrival of Moshiach in the 5778 (2018CE) time period, the measure of the days.

Rav Ashlag further noted that it was not coincidental that the Arizal passed away 444 years before the final redemption (the geula).

So now we must note that that time period of 444 years is 1/13th of the 13 time periods from Adam to Moshiach. One part love.  When a tzaddik like the Arizal passes away, he becomes much more powerful to us as he guides and steers us with loves. And we can’t ask for a more powerful guide than the Arizal to help us ascend the final rung.

This knowledge gives us the equation 13 x 444 = 5772 and in Kabbalah 444 is the same as 444.444, which is what Rav Ashlag of blessed memory used in his computations, thus we get 13 x 444.444 = 5778

It can now be seen by us as well that there are 13 measures and/or 13 Spiritual Temples in all, bringing us to the year 5778 (2018CE), 5 years from now.

The number 13 is not only connected to the route of Love, the unconditional love of the Creator, as we saw above, but it is the numerical value of Echad, “One,” as in G-d is One.

Love = 13 = One

So back to the 10 Commandments (Utterances), the highest point in the Torah, which begin in Exodus 20:2 with G-d saying, “I am God, your Lord (Anochi Adonai Elohaycha, ENCY YHVH ELHYC).” These 13 letters divide into its first 2 words that equate to 107 and the 3rd word which equates to 546, or altogether to 653 plus the kolel of 13 (letters) for a total, not coincidentally of 666And while the number 546 is the sum of the initials of the 10 sefirot (dimensions) of the Tree-of-life, the sum of all the integers from 1 – 107 equals 5778.

Given all this, we can see the divine design is the 3 windows specified for the Tree-of-Life reality: the 1st of which was with Adam; the 2nd occurred in 2448 HC (1313 BCE) with the receipt of the 10 Commandments; and the 3rd exactly 66.6 jubilee years later in 5778 (2018 CE).

The ladder, Sulam, has a numerical value for 130 or 10 x 13, as does the grandest ladder of them all, Mt Sinai (130 or 10 x 13), where the 10 Commandments where given . The ladder is Zeir Anpin, the nexus from our world of Malchut to the Heavenly realms.  As 10 is the numerical value of the letter (Yud) we are where we started, with the integration of the letter Yud and Love. Subtracting 444 from 506, the numerical value of Ahavat Chinam, unconditional love we get 62, as in the 62 Yuds in the 620 letters of the 10 Commandments.

There are 13 rungs on the divine ladder of time, each of equal measure, 444 years, each segment a measure of love, each a step closer to the Future Holy Temple.  Yes, there is a Divine Calendar revealed here, but there is also the measure of love, which we find permeating everything G-d has tried to give us. In it is also the answer of how to ascend that final rung: love.

Love will bring about the Future Holy Temple in this final period.  Nevertheless, of the 444 years, there are only 5 left. And yet, because the whole system was built on love, there is still time.

The Simple Hamotzi; Not So Simple.

Hamotzi, the blessing over bread should be recited all year with the exception of Pesach (Passover) in order to elevate the holy sparks in our meals amongst other divine reasons. But, in Kabbalah we strive to make even higher connections whenever we can by educating ourselves on what we’re actually doing and connecting to it through the hidden technology that most people take for granted. According to the Arizal, there is a right way to do the blessing and it’s pretty simple. We won’t go into all his other meditations, as most people would find them far to cumbersome. I mean, he had 15 minutes of meditations just to wash his finger tips after the meal.  The washing is recommended, as he explained that there is a negative force that hovers over tables and by washing our fingertips we disconnect from it.  That negative force is also somewhat responsible for malevolent conversations that break out from time to time, G-d forbid. It is also one of the reasons it’s not recommended to sit on a table at any time.

Nevertheless, back to the hamotzi. The right way, according to Arizal, is to place all 10 fingers on the bread when reciting the 10 words of the blessing.  What you’re actually doing then is connecting to the 10 sefirot (dimensions) of the universe, especially if you recite the sefirot in your head when placing your fingers upon the bread.

Simple, right?

Sure, and easy too. So let’s see what else there is. Eser, spelled Ayin-Shin-Resh (AShR) is the Hebrew word for 10, as in the 10 sefirot and as in the 10 fingers (and fingertips), represented by the letter Yud (Y) of numerical value 10, which not coincidentally graphically looks very much like a fingertip. And Eser (AShR) has a numerical value of 570.

As we learned from Abraham, the Patriarch in his book, the Sefer Yetzirah, there are 10 sefirot of nothingness, cleaved down the middle, 5 on one side, 5 on the other, just like our 2 hands, which we place on the challah to do our blessing properly.

Ten (10) for the 10 fingers (Yuds) times 570 = 5700. Just as the previous universe, Tohu had 8 Kings and was unstable, our stable one (the world of Tikkune) has 10 Kings, metaphysically speaking, one for each sefirot. And the numerical value of King in Hebrew (Melech, MLC) is likewise 570. So the 10 Kings add up to 5700 as well.

The word King in Hebrew (Melech, MLC) reflects the entire Tree-of-life in that the Mem stands for Malchut (Kingdom) at the bottom of the tree and the Caf stands for Keter (CTR), meaning crown, at the top, and the Lamed (L) in the middle, of numerical value 30, represents the rest of the 32 Paths of wisdom that comprise the Tree-of-life (10 sefirot and 22 interconnecting pathways).

Now, we should complete the equation by adding the bread as a physical medium for the connection. We must note that the numerical value for bread, Lechem (LChM) is 78, or 3 (for the 3-columns of the tree-of-life) times the Tetragrammaton (YHVH, 26), or 26 x 3 = 78.  Thus added to the completion of the 10 Kings,  we get 5700 + 78 = 5778, the year Rav Yeduda HaLevi Ashlag gave for the coming of Moshiach (the Messiah).

It’s not for nothing that the only 10-letter word in the Torah is the Hebrew word for a kneading trough (VBMShERVTYC) in which the Egyptians and Israelites made their bread, as found within the 2nd plague, frogs (tzardeya) of numerical value 444, directly connected to 5778, which we’ll explain in a separate article shortly. The gematria of (VBMShERVTYC) with the kolel of 10 for the 10 letters is 1565, the exact small gematria of the ineffable Name (YHVH), an indication how important this word is.

In our next article we’ll explain how the tree-of-life is designed structurally similar to the Torah.

Shabbat Shalom

The Source of the Ana B’Koach

The Ana B’koach, is the 42-Letter Name of G-d that bridges heaven and Earth, carrying our prayers upward and drawing down the spiritual dew that transforms our reality in seemingly miraculous ways. In fact, according the Arizal, no prayer can be elevated with it, which is one reason why it is so crucial to our existence and spiritual well-being.

To clarify my last article about us being the kings of our kingdoms, the Creator would always be above the King, at least 1000 infinite levels above and beyond. That was the whole point of the article.  Kingdom, Malchut is the lowest of the levels, which is why we can create an illusionist world within it. The very elements we build our world with (physicality) are filled with negative husks (klippot) that suck on the remnants of the original destroyed world of the 8 kings/kingdoms of Tohu.  It is the lack of Light that inspires us to create and it is the little light we do get that we use to create with.  The secrets shared below help us to tap into that light and to draw nearer to it.

The Ana B’koach, is the 42-Letter Name of G-d that bridges Heaven and Earth, carrying our prayers upward and drawing down the spiritual dew that transforms our reality in seemingly miraculous ways. In fact, according the Arizal, no prayer can be elevated with it, which is one reason why it is so crucial to our existence and spiritual well-being.

The 42 Letters of the Name are divided into 14 triplets, which are independently found 506 times throughout the Torah, and by no coincidence 506 is also the value of the first line (6 letters) of the 7-stanza ladder that defines the structure of the Name.  The 42-Letter Name is really a 7 x 6 matrix, just like the dimensions of the Gate of 42 that stands guard right outside the Holy of Holies in the Future Holy Temple, as provided by Rabbi Chaim Luzatto of blessed memory.

506 is also notably the numerical value of Ahavat Chinam (Unconditional love) and is the complete numerical value of Moshiach Ben David (the Messiah). But 506 is also something else.

When we expand the letter Yud (Y), the first letter of the ineffable Name of G-d, YHVH, we get over 3 iterations:

Y

YVD

YVD VYV DLT

And these 13 letters total exactly 506.

Similarly, when we follow the Arizal’s instructions to dissect the YHVH into its component parts, we get a Yud and as each Hei becomes 3 Vavs, the rest of the Name becomes: 7 Vav, each of numerical value 6, just like the 7 x 6 matrix of the Ana B’koach and also the structure of the Magen David (shield of David).

As you can see, the 42-Letter Name is drawn out of the Letter Yud of the YHVH, the highest point imaginable, but this is more than just knowledge; it is also a powerful meditation that brings us closer to G-d, for it is through the Gate of 42 that the shefa (life-force) flows into our world from the Holy of Holies.

The Deepest Secret of Kabbalah Explained

A while back I wrote an article titled The Deepest Secret of Kabbalah. In it, I revealed that whatever we truly desire in life we can have and we are only limited to the extend that we don’t truly desire it. And that is as true today in this highly complicated world as it was thousands of years ago. The understanding here is that those that have special things in their lives have it because they truly desired it–even if it came to them relatively easily–and those that don’t, it’s because they only gave lip-service to those things.  Being jealous about something or even obsessed with it, is not true desire for that object, it’s just a desire to complain about it.

Here’s how it works. All students of Kabbalah know that there are 10 (or 11 including the reservoir called Da’at) sefirot which comprise the dimensional structure of the universe and each of these have 10 sub-sefirot.  They also know that these are hierarchical from Keter (crown) at the top to Malchut (kingdom) at the bottom.  But why Kingdom at the bottom?

Here is another powerful secret, we are all architects of our own world; we are the kings of our Kingdom.  To the extend that you grasp this in your heart, you will be able to not only understand life, but take control over it, and thus achieve your true desires.

It’s commonly believed in Kabbalah that we are at the bottom of the tree-of-life (Malchut of Malchut), vessels receiving only reflected filtered Light from above. And that’s not wrong.  Neverthless, the Arizal also said we are at the top of Malchut, head of the Kingdom.  There’s no discrepancy here as there are many levels of Malchut.  There is the all-important Malchut of Yesod at the crucial juncture between Zeir Anpin and Malchut (Heaven and Earth) and then lower down on the hierarchy there are the 10 sub-levels of Malchut within the greater sphere of Malchut.

The Tanahk contains endless stories about kings. As does the Bahir, the main Kabbalistic text prior to the Zohar. And there are endless stories about Kings amongst the educational stories of the sages and tzaddikim? Why?

Is it because there is a large audience of interested Kings out there? Or because a peasant needs to know how a King acted or should act? Or is it because we all have the power to be Kings if we’d only wake up to it, and the sages understood that?

Of course that power doesn’t derive from us, the same way the kings in your world don’t have any special powers of their own–they are just people, no different from the rest of us. The power, for those that understand, comes through Arich Anpin, the partzuf of Keter, in other words a higher aspect of G-d’s divine will. The divine will to create is a life-force that we eventually tap into and use to shape our own individual kingdoms.

You may be asking yourself if you’re the architect of your own kingdom (world), how come everyone else sees the world more or less as you do and not their own way? The answer is that they exist in your world only for you. It’s like the holodeck on Startrek; they don’t really exist, but because you created them they are very very real to you.  And unless you obtain an extremely high level of spiritual enlightenment, you had better continue treating them as real because the consequences are grave. If it makes you feel better there are myriad other souls going through similar experience as you and because they are tapping into the same divine will, their worlds are similar in structure and all the worlds have the same divine intricately encoded guidebook, The Torah.

Nevertheless, Kabbalah teaches us that because we created our world we can learn from everything/everyone in it.  It’s a beautifully large window into our psyche and our tikkunim (karmic corrections).  Every time you see or hear about something terrible happening in the world, remember you wrote that news report and need to ask yourself why? What were you trying to tell yourself about yourself? And when things go wrong in our worlds, as they do so often, we can react to them and blow up, or we can realize that we requested (designed) them and enjoy the process of fixing them.  Think of your kingdom as an amusement park for your soul.

Unfortunately, our bodies and minds are just the clothes of our souls and like our jackets and jeans they pay the price when we decide to play in the mud. While we continue acting like a jacket, unconscious, and just going along for the ride, we’ll have no control over what happens in our world, but if we learn to align ourselves with our souls we can experience the amusements and thrills of our world as they do.

The real question, though, is if we are the architects of our own kingdoms, why do so many of us choose to be peasants in those kingdoms and not the king?

You designed and built the kingdom and then decided to be peasant in it with control over only a tiny piece of it instead of all of it.  Why? I’m sure your soul is having fun, but are you? What’s missing? Your desire to be king.

President Obama was no one special, with no real work, political, leadership, or business experience, yet he had the true desire to be a king, and thus became one–your king, in your kingdom.  So far you have achieved exactly what you desired–you must have because you are the architect.

When two top football players go up together to catch a ball hurling toward them, who comes down with it? Not the best athlete, but the one with the most desire. The same can be said for teams. It’s not the one with the best or most expensive players, it’s the team with the most desire that wins the game.

The beauty of it all is that you can redesign your kingdom at any time.  The Ana B’koach (42-letter Name of G-d) can help, but if you want to be king, prince, princess, or a star in your kingdom you have to truly desire it in your heart.   You’ve got to really want it.

Lots more secrets to follow soon…