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 Anonymous
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23/03/2012 8:56 pm  

I have a copy of the book of formations written by Aryeh Kaplan. In it he claims Binah is fire and Chokmah is water, which is the opposite to what is taught in magical qabbalah. Does anybody know if the attributes can be reversed for some reason, or if there is no absolutely correct attribution? I guess it could be a typo or deliberate error as well.


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Shiva
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23/03/2012 11:54 pm  

Above the Abyss, nothing is true unless it contains its contradiction within itself.


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 Anonymous
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24/03/2012 8:42 pm  

While that is true it does not really answer the question. All things may contain their opposite to some degree yet this is a very specific statement. I was wondering if perhaps there are various kabbalistic traditions that differ on this point.


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mika
 mika
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26/03/2012 7:50 pm  
"Pointy Stick" wrote:
I have a copy of the book of formations written by Aryeh Kaplan. In it he claims Binah is fire and Chokmah is water, which is the opposite to what is taught in magical qabbalah. Does anybody know if the attributes can be reversed for some reason, or if there is no absolutely correct attribution? I guess it could be a typo or deliberate error as well.

This was NOT a typo or deliberate error. 

When you say this is "the opposite to what is taught in magical qabbalah", what exact teaching are you talking about?  There are many layers of symbolism and interpretation; the elemental associations entirely depend on what angle you're considering. I'd need to know what your background is to address your question specifically.

For example:  With most hermetic magick, western alchemy based systems, the 'Mother' or 'primary feminine' is associated with water and the 'Father' or 'primary masculine' is associated with fire, as with the Queen and King/Knight of tarot, or the alchemical symbols of the downward-pointing and upward-pointing triangles.  Sometimes the 'Mother' and 'Father' symbolism is associated with Binah and Chockmah, which I'm assuming are the "magical qabalah" associations you mention in your post.

However: from a qabalistic perspective, in particular a Hebrew QBL perspective, Binah is the 'crown' of the pillar of severity which is associated with fire, and Chokmah is the 'crown' of the pillar of mercy which is associated with water.  If you find the seeming contradiction to be too difficult to process, then meditate on the whole pillar rather than focusing on Binah and Chockmah individually.  These elemental associations are based on the nature of the two pillars, not the Mother/Father aspects of Binah and Chockmah.


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Markus
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26/03/2012 8:05 pm  
"Shiva" wrote:
Above the Abyss, nothing is true unless it contains its contradiction within itself.

Yes, well said. But is this really only true above the abyss? Hegel famously said: "Contradictio est regula veri, non contradictio falsi" i.e. contradiction is the norm of truth, non-contradiction that of untruth. This is an extremely important point, IMHO. However, I do believe that it pertains to matters below the abyss as well.

Markus


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Shiva
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26/03/2012 9:49 pm  
"Markus" wrote:
"Shiva" wrote:
Above the Abyss, nothing is true unless it contains its contradiction within itself.

Yes, well said. But is this really only true above the abyss? Hegel famously said: "Contradictio est regula veri, non contradictio falsi" i.e. contradiction is the norm of truth, non-contradiction that of untruth. This is an extremely important point, IMHO. However, I do believe that it pertains to matters below the abyss as well.

In this case, the question was in reference to supra-abyssmal matters: Binah & Chokmah.

But yes, of course, it has applications below the abyss ... maybe even in the Malkuthian marketplace (although we probably won't see it there too much).


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Azidonis
(@azidonis)
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Posts: 2964
26/03/2012 9:52 pm  
"Shiva" wrote:
"Markus" wrote:
"Shiva" wrote:
Above the Abyss, nothing is true unless it contains its contradiction within itself.

Yes, well said. But is this really only true above the abyss? Hegel famously said: "Contradictio est regula veri, non contradictio falsi" i.e. contradiction is the norm of truth, non-contradiction that of untruth. This is an extremely important point, IMHO. However, I do believe that it pertains to matters below the abyss as well.

In this case, the question was in reference to supra-abyssmal matters: Binah & Chokmah.

But yes, of course, it has applications below the abyss ... maybe even in the Malkuthian marketplace (although we probably won't see it there too much).

There is the Switch.


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Azidonis
(@azidonis)
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26/03/2012 9:52 pm  
"mika" wrote:
"Pointy Stick" wrote:
I have a copy of the book of formations written by Aryeh Kaplan. In it he claims Binah is fire and Chokmah is water, which is the opposite to what is taught in magical qabbalah. Does anybody know if the attributes can be reversed for some reason, or if there is no absolutely correct attribution? I guess it could be a typo or deliberate error as well.

This was NOT a typo or deliberate error. 

When you say this is "the opposite to what is taught in magical qabbalah", what exact teaching are you talking about?  There are many layers of symbolism and interpretation; the elemental associations entirely depend on what angle you're considering. I'd need to know what your background is to address your question specifically.

For example:  With most hermetic magick, western alchemy based systems, the 'Mother' or 'primary feminine' is associated with water and the 'Father' or 'primary masculine' is associated with fire, as with the Queen and King/Knight of tarot, or the alchemical symbols of the downward-pointing and upward-pointing triangles.  Sometimes the 'Mother' and 'Father' symbolism is associated with Binah and Chockmah, which I'm assuming are the "magical qabalah" associations you mention in your post.

However: from a qabalistic perspective, in particular a Hebrew QBL perspective, Binah is the 'crown' of the pillar of severity which is associated with fire, and Chokmah is the 'crown' of the pillar of mercy which is associated with water.  If you find the seeming contradiction to be too difficult to process, then meditate on the whole pillar rather than focusing on Binah and Chockmah individually.  These elemental associations are based on the nature of the two pillars, not the Mother/Father aspects of Binah and Chockmah.

Wonderful way to explain this, mika.


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 Anonymous
Joined: 51 years ago
Posts: 0
27/03/2012 8:08 pm  
"mika" wrote:
"Pointy Stick" wrote:
I have a copy of the book of formations written by Aryeh Kaplan. In it he claims Binah is fire and Chokmah is water, which is the opposite to what is taught in magical qabbalah. Does anybody know if the attributes can be reversed for some reason, or if there is no absolutely correct attribution? I guess it could be a typo or deliberate error as well.

This was NOT a typo or deliberate error. 

When you say this is "the opposite to what is taught in magical qabbalah", what exact teaching are you talking about?  There are many layers of symbolism and interpretation; the elemental associations entirely depend on what angle you're considering. I'd need to know what your background is to address your question specifically.

For example:  With most hermetic magick, western alchemy based systems, the 'Mother' or 'primary feminine' is associated with water and the 'Father' or 'primary masculine' is associated with fire, as with the Queen and King/Knight of tarot, or the alchemical symbols of the downward-pointing and upward-pointing triangles.  Sometimes the 'Mother' and 'Father' symbolism is associated with Binah and Chockmah, which I'm assuming are the "magical qabalah" associations you mention in your post.

However: from a qabalistic perspective, in particular a Hebrew QBL perspective, Binah is the 'crown' of the pillar of severity which is associated with fire, and Chokmah is the 'crown' of the pillar of mercy which is associated with water.  If you find the seeming contradiction to be too difficult to process, then meditate on the whole pillar rather than focusing on Binah and Chockmah individually.  These elemental associations are based on the nature of the two pillars, not the Mother/Father aspects of Binah and Chockmah.

I understand what you are saying. If the writer had wrote that Binah is fire, being the head of the pillar of severity then that would have been clear.

I have no problem with the symbolism, which is pretty standard stuff. I was just asking if anybody knew why that writer seemingly has the elemental associations the other way round to what is normally taught. I suppose that in Atziluth the three top sephiroth are all in one palace anyway, so perhaps it is not simply a matter of attributing an elemental association.


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herupakraath
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28/03/2012 4:32 am  
"Pointy Stick" wrote:
I have a copy of the book of formations written by Aryeh Kaplan. In it he claims Binah is fire and Chokmah is water, which is the opposite to what is taught in magical qabbalah. Does anybody know if the attributes can be reversed for some reason, or if there is no absolutely correct attribution? I guess it could be a typo or deliberate error as well.

The "magical qabalah"  as you call it is largely rooted in patterns developed by the Golden Dawn and the Western Hermetic practices that influenced their ideas. Kaplan provides a pretty standard translation of the Sefer Yetzirah, so its not the Jewish view of Chokmah and Binah that deviates from the norm, but the Western Hermetic/Golden Dawn view of them, a point none of the previous respondents evidently care to admit, offering instead apologetic double-speak.

Although I have little interest in traditional qabalah at this point in my evolution as an initiate, and have no time or concern with researching the details, I suspect the deviation in question has something to do with the link made between the four elements, the four familial archetypes, and the Tetragrammaton by the Golden Dawn; in that schemata, the father represents fire, and the mother water, hence the decision to attribute Binah the mother to water, and Chokmah the father to fire.

In following discussions about the tree of life and its attributes, what I have garnered from them is there are several versions of the tree that deviate from each other, stretching back for centuries.

 


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 Anonymous
Joined: 51 years ago
Posts: 0
28/03/2012 8:32 pm  
"herupakraath" wrote:
"Pointy Stick" wrote:
I have a copy of the book of formations written by Aryeh Kaplan. In it he claims Binah is fire and Chokmah is water, which is the opposite to what is taught in magical qabbalah. Does anybody know if the attributes can be reversed for some reason, or if there is no absolutely correct attribution? I guess it could be a typo or deliberate error as well.

The "magical qabalah"  as you call it is largely rooted in patterns developed by the Golden Dawn and the Western Hermetic practices that influenced their ideas. Kaplan provides a pretty standard translation of the Sefer Yetzirah, so its not the Jewish view of Chokmah and Binah that deviates from the norm, but the Western Hermetic/Golden Dawn view of them, a point none of the previous respondents evidently care to admit, offering instead apologetic double-speak.

Although I have little interest in traditional qabalah at this point in my evolution as an initiate, and have no time or concern with researching the details, I suspect the deviation in question has something to do with the link made between the four elements, the four familial archetypes, and the Tetragrammaton by the Golden Dawn; in that schemata, the father represents fire, and the mother water, hence the decision to attribute Binah the mother to water, and Chokmah the father to fire.

In following discussions about the tree of life and its attributes, what I have garnered from them is there are several versions of the tree that deviate from each other, stretching back for centuries.

Thanks for that. I have seen different versions of the tree. Maybe both methods are correct depending on the individuals perspective


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Azidonis
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Joined: 14 years ago
Posts: 2964
28/03/2012 9:42 pm  

Something to consider:

Source:
"Note 1: Nouns for females often end with -ah.
Note 2: Verbs and adjectives typically also take the ending -ah when used with female subjects. "

Note 3: Both Binah and Chokmah maintain an "-ah" ending (feminine), instead of "-eh" (masculine).


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 Anonymous
Joined: 51 years ago
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29/03/2012 9:10 am  

Isn't Binah feminine anyway? Home to the great mother...Babalon, and Nuit. Also the supreme female concept.
S/S


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Shiva
(@shiva)
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29/03/2012 2:52 pm  
"Sophie/Stewart" wrote:
Isn't Binah feminine anyway? Home to the great mother...Babalon, and Nuit. Also the supreme female concept.

Yes. In a certain manner of thought. The Babalon correlation is certainly "standard thinking," but I believe we will find Nuit (the "higher self" of Babalon) out in the realms we call Ain and Soph and Aur. On the other hand, Binah is correlated to Saturn, a "he-god" in nature, and we even find Isis being attributed to Chokmah in a certain way by his Crowleyness in 777.

"Thinking" & "Correlation" & "Attributions" (my words) are mental matters, below the Veil. This thread is asking and answering questions beyond that veil, so that's why it is cleverly dancing around the maypole.


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mika
 mika
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29/03/2012 9:55 pm  
"Pointy Stick" wrote:
I was just asking if anybody knew why that writer seemingly has the elemental associations the other way round to what is normally taught.

Kaplan's associations are not "the other way round to what is normally taught".  They are entirely consistent with standard Hebrew Kabbalah.  It is *you* who are assuming hermetic qabala is "normal", the base standard, and then concluding Hebrew Kabbalah is "the other way round". 

It would be very easy to argue that Hebrew Kabbalah came first and anything that followed that is inconsistent with the interpretations of Hebrew scholars is "the other way round", but that's not the point.  The point is that you are assuming something you were taught is the standard and everything else is a deviation, simply because you were taught that one thing first.  In reality, any and all interpretations that are consistent with the Sefer Yetzirah are equally valid "normal" teachings.


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 Anonymous
Joined: 51 years ago
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30/03/2012 9:54 pm  
"mika" wrote:
"Pointy Stick" wrote:
I was just asking if anybody knew why that writer seemingly has the elemental associations the other way round to what is normally taught.

Kaplan's associations are not "the other way round to what is normally taught".  They are entirely consistent with standard Hebrew Kabbalah.  It is *you* who are assuming hermetic qabala is "normal", the base standard, and then concluding Hebrew Kabbalah is "the other way round". 

It would be very easy to argue that Hebrew Kabbalah came first and anything that followed that is inconsistent with the interpretations of Hebrew scholars is "the other way round", but that's not the point.  The point is that you are assuming something you were taught is the standard and everything else is a deviation, simply because you were taught that one thing first.  In reality, any and all interpretations that are consistent with the Sefer Yetzirah are equally valid "normal" teachings.

Actually your post is not very helpful at all. I am not trying to start a debate about what method set of attributions came first. I was just asking if anybody knew any reason why in his book they are the opposite of what is commonly written. I have read many books on qabbalah and have never once seen binah listed as fire and chokmah as water except in Kaplans book

I suppose we could go with 'all words are sacred and all prophets true'!!


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MoogPlayer
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05/07/2012 10:59 pm  

I'm surprised that no one has mentioned yet that the main body of Kaplan's text on the Sepher Yetzirah is a translation of the Long version. He includes the other versions, and this is significant because it is the short version which is usually referenced by the Hermetic kabbalah.

From what I've gathered, the Hebraic qabballah was greatly influenced by the appearance of the Zohar. All the different traditions, and threads were synthesized into a standard version that falls back on the Zohar (which may or may not be a forgery).


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