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michael berg kabbalah scholar

Michaels Blog

Michael Berg is the co-director of The Kabbalah Centre and editor of the first-ever English translation of The Zohar... read more

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The Reason We Fall

Topic: Personal Transformation | Posted: April 10, 2019

The process of purifying an individual from tzara'at, leprosy, occurs in the portion Metzora. It’s not just specifically speaking, however, about leprosy, but also about the purification of any individual who has found themselves in darkness because of their own negative actions. It says the person who has leprosy is sent outside of the city where he or she lives. After seven days, the kohen, the priest, also goes outside of the city and ascertains whether that person has gone through enough purification; if so, then he or she is allowed back. This whole process of the kohen going and finding out whether that person can come back or not holds within it, the kabbalists teach, a tremendous amount of secrets - one upon which all the spiritual work is based. The purpose of spiritual work, they explain, is to recover sparks of Light that have been given over to the Negative Side, called... read more

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Using Kabbalistic Tools to Create Protection

Topic: Prayer & Meditation | Posted: April 3, 2019

Most of the portion Tazria deals with the laws of tzara'at, leprosy. In one part, it says leprosy can occur in three places: on the individual, on his or her clothes, or on his or her house. The Talmud says that worthy are those who the Creator gave the tools and gifts of: the tefilin, that we wear on our head and our arm, the tzitzit, that we wear either in our clothing or tallit, and the mezuzah, that we put on our door. The kabbalists explain that these three tools represent the three parts of our lives: our body, the things that we own (clothing), and our home. Therefore, they tell us a person who uses these three tools can purify these – and all - elements of their life. In the Talmud, Rabbi Eliezar, the son of Yaakov, says, "Every person who uses these tools every day will not sin,” meaning he will not do anything negative that day. It says that if we use these three tools we are... read more

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Choosing to Soar

Topic: Kabbalistic Concepts | Posted: March 27, 2019

In the portion Shmini, after giving the kosher food laws, explaining that some foods have the ability, spiritually, to either bring us down or to elevate us, the Creator then asks why this direction that “I, the Light of the Creator that elevated you out of Egypt” is giving them is important. There are many different words in the Torah relating to the going out of Egypt; however, the word used here specifically means “elevated.” So, why does the Torah in the portion Shminispecifically use the word that means “I elevated,” and what are we to receive from that secret on this Shabbat? To understand this, the kabbalists begin by quoting a verse from Ecclesiastes, from King Solomon. It says, “…Who pays attention to the soul of man, whether it elevates upwards, and the animal soul, which goes down…” pointing out that there are two sets of existence in this world. He’s not literally referring... read more

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The Greatness of Each Action

Topic: Kabbalistic Concepts | Posted: March 20, 2019

There is an interesting discussion in the beginning of the portion Tzav. It begins, “The Creator spoke to Moses, telling him, ‘Command Aaron and his children, saying this is the law of the burnt offering…’” Here, the Creator is explaining the work that the priests, the kohenim, were to do every morning in the Mishkan. The altar had a fire that was burning all the time, and overnight it had burnt it up all the sacrifices that had been brought. In the morning, the priest would put on special clothing, go to the altar, and take out a certain amount of ashes and then burn them, making them a sacrifice. Clearly, this is not work that was meant to be janitorial; what, therefore, was the meaning of this action, and what are we meant to learn from it? My father, Rav Berg, often spoke about the fact that everything we see is an illusion. One of the greatest illusions we fall to is an idea of... read more

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Secrets of the Bible

The book by Michael Berg

Secrets of the Bible is a lifelong pursuit and there are many teachings within its veiled text. Bringing forward a fresh and relevant message about ou

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The Thought of Creation

The book by Michael Berg

In The Thought of Creation, Rav Yehuda Ashlag describes the process of the original Creation, which is highly relevant today because life is a continu

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