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The Judaism of Tomorrow
My Rav Kook
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#4 The Holographic Oneness of the Universe
8Collections 1:813, 1:902; Glimmerings of Holiness 2:394

It is a simple and straightforward teaching

that everything happening in the world,

all creatures, all their doings, and every detail of their makeup,

their natures, their traits, their dimensions, their lifepaths,

corporeal and, of course, spiritual,

every thing1,

is a condensed version2 of the phenomenon of the whole of existence,

and there is readiness in human intelligence and in the power of spiritual imagination

to find the roots [of particular phenomena] in their original source3 .

And this is the principle of God's secret to those who revere Him4,

and of sublime intimacy [with God5] at its peak value.

The ultimate purpose of all existence6

is the revelation of the light of God at its pinnacle of exquisite pleasure,

in a unity so high,

that there will be no spark of life whose own personal existence does not rise to this level7,

which is higher than all height.

And then will the genius of all existence as a whole

shine forth in each and every particular detail,

something on the model of a mirror,

where everything opposite it is lit up and visible within it;

and there is no end to this great joy.

And this is the reason the cosmos first needs to be divided into the tiniest of parts,

and enormous shatterings must take place in order to separate the smallest particles.

And after they are polished up and clarified, behold:

each speck will contain the whole of all existence,

and it all is filled with God’s light and His glory.

עברית +/-
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Footnotes

  1. And everything: Hakol hu tamtzit. Back to text
  2. Tamtzit, the verbal noun of mitza (to drain out, squeeze out), means that which gushes forth (lifeblood, juice) in Mishnaic Hebrew. In Modern Hebrew tamtzit means essence, both the lemonade concentrate in my freezer and a summary or abstract of a paper: a condensed version of something bigger, with all the essence preserved. Back to text
  3. Perhaps this should read Source; that is God, The One, the Source of all existence. This is certainly a difficult phrase to translate. Back to text
  4. Ps. 25:14 Back to text
  5. HaDevekut ha‘Elyona. The Hebrew root d-b-kuf means ‘to cohere, to attach or cleave to something else’; it denotes union without loss of inherent distinction. While it has many semantic associations (the intractability of a disease, the pinning down of an enemy, close association with scholars, demonic possession), its first usage in Torah connotes the unity of the two different halves of humanity; the body-soul intimacy of man and wife: their face-to-face love, their mutual and absolute bond of fidelity, their generative unity of paradox. “Therefore shall a man abandon his father and his mother and cleave to his wife and they shall become one flesh” (Gen. 2:24). In this Glimmering, devekut refers to devoted, intimate attachedness to God, a positive commandment (see, e.g., Deut. 10:20, 11:22, 13:5). The Zohar (2:82b, 2:97b, 3:202a et al.) says that devekut with God is the end goal of all the commandments, the constant communion of fidelity and love that bonds dissimilar ones: the human one and the One Beyond All Human Knowing, the finite and the Infinite. Devekut is the state of human consciousness that binds the universe of all-is-one to the One Who created it to make His Name known. See Glimmering #8, “Israel’s Role: Uniting Oneness and The One” for the Jewish People’s role in this. Back to text
  6. These two pieces, one beginning “It is a simple and straightforward teaching,” the other beginning “The ultimate purpose of all existence,” are printed together in Glimmerings of Holiness, even though they are distinct entries in Rav Kook’s spiritual diaries. I kept them together because their combination is fruitful. Back to text
  7. This is what the process of Teshuva Elyona is about. See Chapter IV, “Teshuva ‘Elyona – The Mysteries Within You.” Back to text
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