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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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Becoming One with the Light

Topic: Kabbalistic Concepts | Posted: February 13, 2019

In the portion Tetzaveh, the Creator gives commandments to Moses, beginning with the words Ve’ata Tetzaveh, “And you should command,” but does not mention Moses by name, only using the word “you.” This is important, because the kabbalists point out it is the only place in the Torah from the time Moses was born until now where his name is not mentioned. The Baal Haturim gives an explanation as to why this is. At the time of the fall of the golden calf, the Creator wanted to destroy all the Israelites, but Moses told the Creator, “You have to forgive them and remove the judgment; if You do not, then You can erase me from Your book.” And although the Creator accepted Moses’ request and forgave the Israelites, the statement “erase me from Your book,” the Baal Haturim explains, came to fruition for Moses in the portion Tetzaveh, where his name is not mentioned. That is the literal... read more

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Taking In the Light

Topic: Personal Transformation | Posted: February 6, 2019

The portion Terumahis a very beautiful one. Physically, the story talks about the gathering of material for the building of the Mishkan, the Tabernacle. However, at the core of this reading, and this Shabbat, is really an awakening of the heart and soul to a connection with the Light of the Creator. And many of the most beautiful sections of the Zohar that speak about that awakening of our heart and soul are discussed in Terumah’s Zohar portion. As such, what is really unique about Shabbat Terumah is the assistance we receive from the Light of the Creator to truly open and feel the awakening of our heart and soul. The portion begins with the Creator telling Moses, regarding the Israelites, “They should bring Me an offering . . . Any person,” meet kol ish asher yidvenu libo, “whose heart is awakened to give,” kol ish tikkhu et terumati, “from him you can and should take the offering.”... read more

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Fix This World

Topic: Personal Transformation | Posted: January 30, 2019

There is a story in the Talmud about Shabbat Mishpatim. It says when Moses went up to the Heavens to receive the Torah, the angels asked the Creator, “Master of the World, why is there a human being here among us?” And an argument, or conversation, ensues. Because what was being given to humankind, through the Torah, was not wisdom or a spiritual path; it was an actual detachment of the essence of the Light of the Creator, being sent down for anybody who wants it. The angels could not understand that, therefore, they asked the Creator, “How can you give over control of the essence of Your Light to man?” If the Creator was simply giving over wisdom, or even giving over a spiritual path, the angels would have no difficulty understanding. But the Creator is giving over His essence, and that is what this Shabbat is about: the concept of the giving of the Torah, which is a giving over of the... read more

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Protection from Doubts

Topic: Kabbalistic Concepts | Posted: January 23, 2019

There is a section in the Midrash that I believe to be a driving thought and force of Shabbat Yitro: The Creator says to Moses, regarding his father-in-law Jethro, or Yitro, "My Essence is always to bring forth, to bring close, and never to push away." We understand from this that in the portion Yitro, the Creator brings us close to Him. However, in order for that to happen, we have to beg for it, and the reason we have to beg for it is important. On the other side of the Creator’s bringing us close is the force of Amalek, the force of doubt and uncertainty, the force that pushes us away from the Creator. Amalek is when the thoughts of, “I don’t even want to connect,” come into our mind. The only way to counteract such thoughts is to first understand what Amalek is, and then, especially on ShabbatYitro when the essence of the Light of the Creator is bringing us close, beg for that... 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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