Kabbalah and Art
In the dialogue relating to healing, art and Judaism, it is helpful to have the perspective that “illness”, particularly the whole range of mental disorders, even normal tension, is the result of a “constricted” consciousness, which is called in the Kabbalah: MiTZRayim - the Hebrew name for Egypt, connected to words with the Hebrew root M-TZ-R meaning straits and constriction. (It is interesting to note that the suffix "ayim" in the word Mitzrayim connates a doubling effect, as if to imply a "constriction within a constriction". That is to say a person who is (perhaps happily) completely unaware of his constricted view of life.) The responsibility of the healer is to help deliver his patient from his mental "Egypt" to achieve a new and expansive vision of his life and mission. The constricted mundane consciousness is often described in the Kabbalah as the Elo-kim mode, a world ruled only by natural & rational laws. Expansive consciousness is the Yod-Kay-Vav-Kay mode, which implies the Past, the Present and the Future, together and simultaneously, and is the essence of the Jewish religious faith. This mode name is so holy that we substitute in a secular context just the word: HaShem: The Name.
The above approach, especially in the areas of the rejuvenation of prayer and holiday observance & verbal oriented meditation, is commonly practiced in many synagogues and havurot. Our innovation is its implementation in the visual arts.
There is a saying: “You are what you eat”. We would change it to: “You are what you hang up on your walls”.
Certainly, the quality and direction of a person’s daily visual stimuli must have an influence on his/her mood and can be a springboard to profound spiritual meditation. We would argue that in the Judaic tradition, usually thought of as essentially iconoclastic, according to the misinterpretation of the percept, not to make a “graven image”, there are many areas which are especially appropriate to visual meditation and a source of inspiration for the artist.
1. The Sacred Letters or the Hebrew letters according to the scribal style that appears in the Torah scroll.
3. Images of the Dialogue-Antilogue series , suggesting through abstract forms and archetypes the intimate relationship between a man and his wife, the most potent kabbalistic metaphor for spiritual connection.
4. In general, abstract art, or more precisely illusionist or “gestalt” art, can be become a strong stimulant to meditation, since it invites the active participation of the viewer with the endless possibility of seeing “new things”, thus eliciting multi-layered expansive consciousness.
5. The use of the Golden Section (Fibonacci series), Cubes and Supercubes, Spiral Helixes and Fractals, all of which are hinted at in Jewish philosophy and in particular the Kabbalah.
Since “seeing is believing” we invite you to test our “thesis” by viewing samples of our work at our web site. Just follow the menus:
Links to recommended sites on Kabbalah:
The Gal Einai Home Page
Ascent of Safed
For more information, please inquire:
Telephone in Israel: 972-2-5618303
Mailing address: POB 7143
Jerusalem Israel 91071