Arizal: Prince of the Kabbalists
Arizal: Prince of the Kabbalists
Rabbi Yitzchak Luria, known as the Ari or Arizal was born in Jerusalem in 1534, in his short life he influenced greatly the learning and development of the Kabbalah. No one as of today, dares to refute or contradict any of his teachings. The level of his knowledge and revelation was and still is far above the possible comprehension of most men.
To best describe his heavenly nature, his main student Rabbi Haim Vital writes as an introduction in one of his works the following: The Ari overflowed with Torah. He was expert in Scripture, Mishnah, Talmud, Midrash, Maaseh Bereishit and Maaseh Merkavah. About all the different levels of prophesy, their details and from which level the prophets had their revelations. He understood the whistling of the trees, the grass and stones, the language of the birds and other animals, the conversations of angels, the flicking of a candle. He could read lines on the hand or faces in the manner outlined in the Zohar (2:74b). He could discern all that any individual had done, and could see what they would do in the future. He could read a person’s thoughts, even before the thought entered his mind. He saw future events and knew about all happening here or decreed in heaven. He understood the mysteries of reincarnation, who had been born before or incarnated for the first time. He could talk to the soul of a person in front of him; know of his previous incarnations, what he did from the day he was born until now and what his present Tikun is. He could tell anyone about his sins in his previous life and why he came back in this present life. He could look at someone and let him know how he was connected to higher spiritual levels and what is his original root in Adam Harishon. The Ari could see extraordinary things about someone in the light of a candle or through the flame of a fire. He was able to see the souls of the righteous, those who had died lately or had lived in ancient times.
With these souls he studied supernal secrets. By a person's scent he was able to know all that he had done. The evildoers avoided him, he could see though them and know what they did or thought. When sincere men wanted to repent, then he would tell them what was their exact Tikun to restore and completely repair their souls. He would tell his students how lost souls would come to him by the thousands whenever he was in the fields. They would fill the trees, the rivers and ask him to help and repair them. He knew every deed a person had done or would do in the future. He could see anyone’s thoughts and foresee all his future ones. He could travel great distance by concentrating and projecting his physical body instantly. All the secrets and mysteries were in him and disclosed whenever he desired. All this we witnessed with our own eyes not heard from others. They were extraordinary things never revealed since the times of Rabbi Shimon bar Yohai. This was not achieved through magic since it is strongly prohibited to use these forces. Instead, it came naturally because of his saintliness and asceticism after studying for many years ancient and newer Kabbalistic texts. He increased and reached higher levels of piety, purity and holiness where Elijah the prophet continually revealed himself to him, speaking to him directly and teaching him these secrets.
I have tried with this work to first give a truthful description of the Arizal’s extraordinary life by translating an annotating known publications as ‘Shivhe HaAri’ and ‘HaAri Veguriav’ which factually describe some of his wonders as witnessed and testified by his contemporaries. In the second part, I have translated and explained some excerpts of his main works as to give a first idea of the extremely high level of his revelations and explanation of the authentic Kabbalah. I chose not to translate some works as Shaare Hakdamot, Shaare Mamarei Rashbi or Shaare Mamarei Razal as they are about very advanced concepts of Kabbalah and above the scope of this book.
By: Rabbi Raphael Afilalo | Publisher: Kabbalah Editions - Montreal | Language: English | Volumes: 1 | Pages: 223 | Binding: Soft |View full details