Item description for Endless Light: The Ancient Path of Kabbalah by David Aaron...
Overview The head of Jerusalem's Isralight Institute offers a path to spiritual growth and answers to life's deepest questions drawn from the Kabbalah (occult Jewish philosophy based on a mystical interpretation of the Scriptures). Reprint.
Publishers Description After years of careful study, David Aaron helps us find the answers to life's questions as revealed in the Kabbalah, the mystical tradition of Judaism. Unlike other works on the Kabbalah, which are often academic, abstract, and unrelated to our everyday challenges and concerns, Endless Light is a thought-provoking, practical guide that illuminates our path in life.
Rich in personal stories and anecdotes, Endless Light offers a deeper awareness of ourselves, our inner conflicts, and the way we understand and receive life's bounteous gifts. Drawing upon the profound, timeless teachings of the ancients as well as on his own contemporary insights, David Aaron helps truth-seekers of all faiths to enrich their lives, strengthen their faith, and enjoy more meaningful relationships.
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Studio: Berkley Trade
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.3" Width: 5.28" Height: 0.47" Weight: 0.35 lbs.
Release Date Nov 1, 1998
Publisher Berkley Trade
ISBN 0425166295 ISBN13 9780425166291 UPC 071831012005
Availability 1 units. Availability accurate as of Mar 28, 2017 08:15.
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More About David Aaron
Rabbi David Aaron is the founder and dean of the Isralight Institute, an international organization with centers in Israel and the United States. He travels throughout the world lecturing and leading retreats. Spiritual mentor to many, including several celebrities, Aaron is also the author of Endless Light. He lives in the Old City of Jerusalem with his wife and their seven children.
David Aaron currently resides in Jerusalem. David Aaron was born in 1957.
Reviews - What do customers think about Endless Light: The Ancient Path of Kabbalah?
Amazingly Good Book Jul 21, 2006
If no one said anything, you might not even know that there's anything Kabbalah in the book. It's a very light reading with a lot of positive info and wisdom. I truly enjoyed the read and it has stuck with me over the years and made a valuable impact.
Here's a small excerpt of one of my favorite sections to give you a general idea of the type of teaching inside:
"So let's go back to the beginning of creation again. In the very opening sentences of the Torah we are told that the first human being was created in G-d's own image. And what was that image, you might ask? Consider the possibility that the first human being was actually a single entity that included both sexes. If you don't believe me, read Genesis, chapter 1, verse 27. This is the Soncino Press version of that very puzzling sentence, from which it is apparent that the translator had some trouble juggling genders: "And G-d created man in His own image, in the image of G-d created He him; male and female created He them.""
"So there we have it - the first human being, both male and female. And in this union of the sexes, in this oneness of the sexes, the first human being reflected the image of G-d - a oneness that includes otherness and yet remains one."
"Incidentally, this notion is clearly expressed in the words of a Jewish wedding ceremony. When two people get married, this blessing is recited: "Blessed are You, Hashem, King of the Universe, Who created the human being in Your image." Why is this blessing said at a wedding ceremony? Wouldn't it be more appropriate to say such a blessing when a child is born? The answer is no: it is through the uniting of a man and a woman that the image of G-d is most closely reflected."
"This is a very important concept. A lone individual does not reflect the image of G-d. An individual in unity with an other does. As we saw in the Kabbalistic picture of creation, the light of G-d is a oneness that includes an otherness. So until an individual makes a space to include an other, and allows that other to do the same, we do not have the oneness that reflects the image of G-d."
"But creating that kind of oneness is not simple. It takes real love. And real love is not simple, either. Yet it is possible, even though we usually stumble and fall - fall in and out of love - trying to learn how."
"If we go back to the Torah's story of creation, we come upon a passage, after the human being has been created, where G-d says: "It is not good for man to be alone." After every other act of creation we are told and it was good." But suddenly, "it is not good" - "not good to be alone.""
"G-d determines that the human being needs "a helpmate," but it is a while before Eve is created. Instead, all the birds and animals are created and the human being is asked to name them. At the conclusion of this, the Torah tells us, "... but for Adam no fitting helpmate was found.""
"Why wasn't Adam happy with an animal for a helpmate in his quest for love and oneness? Because an animal is subordinate to man. It's not his equal. In fact, the first human being had been commanded earlier: "Have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth." So Adam could not overcome his loneliness and find true love with a subordinate being, over whom he ruled."
"Indeed, the Torah is very clear in describing an appropriate spouse for Adam. The helpmate is to be kenegdo And the Torah plainly states that man did not find among the animals a helpmate who was kenegdo. The Hebrew word kenegdo means "against, opposite, parallel to." Although the passage is often mistranslated as "I will make a fitting helpmate for him," G-d actually says, "I will make a fitting helpmate *against* him." G-d intends that Adam's helpmate be someone who, in a very positive, respectful way, will stand opposite him and engage him on parallel ground."
"An animal may be a great help to Adam in doing his work, but an animal cannot be the significant other with whom he can share his existence, whom he can truly love. You, too, will not be ultimately satisfied in the quest for love unless it is with a helpmate who is kenegdo - a person whom you acknowledge as your equal and whose difference you respect. A helpmate kenegdo is an other. You cannot overcome loneliness and achieve true love if you are looking for someone who is subordinate to you, who has no mind of his or her own."
"Of course, that's not to say that some insecure people would prefer not to be challenged. I have heard men advise one another, "Get yourself a woman you can mold." And yes, a man might find someone young, inexperienced, and vulnerable and try to make her fit his ridiculous fantasy of a wife who considers him the lord and master. But he will only make his life harder as a result. His will be a very lonely existence and he will sorely miss the engagement that a helpmate kenegdo would have provided, an engagement that is so essential in the process of spiritual growth. All the sadder, in this way he will deprive himself of the opportunity of being the living manifestation of G-d, which is expressed through the ability to love, making a space within oneself to include a unique other."
"A relationship of dominance is not the image of G-d or the image of love - it is not making a space within yourself for an other and giving of yourself to that other. Only when two people give to each other and help each other within a relationship of mutual respect and inclusiveness can they receive the gift of love, the Everlasting Light of love."
"You are probably wondering how all this fits with the well-known verse from the Torah: "He will rule over you." Is this not the very source and justification for man's dominance over women? The answer is, "No, on the contrary." The Torah is telling us that this is a curse, not the norm, and certainly not any kind of an ideal to strive for. Indeed, as part of our mending work, we are responsible for nullifying this curse, just as modern technology in agriculture is nullifying the curse of "by the sweat of your brow shall you eat bread.""
"The Torah and the Kabbalah see the relationship between every couple as part of an ongoing process, fixing the cursed relationship of Adam and Eve and thereby receiving the light of love back into the world."
"This process of restoring the equilibrium between the sexes is seen in all the key male-and-female relationship, in the stories of the Torah. For example, G-d tells Abraham, "All that Sarah [your wife] has said to you, hearken to her voice." Like Sarah, Rebecca, the wife of Isaac, could hardly be described as subordinate to her husband. It was Rebecca who courageously coaxed her son Jacob into disguising himself as his manipulative brother, Esau, so that his blind father would give him the blessing of the first born, intended for Esau. Rebecca had the insight to know that it was truly Jacob who deserved the blessing, and she needed to orchestrate this ploy in order to help Isaac realize his own vulnerability to manipulation. Later, when Jacob married, he did not rule over his two wives, Rachel and Leah. We are told he worked hard to get their agreement before he moved the family, rather than merely announcing his decision regardless of their opinions on the matter."
"The Torah and the Kabbalah clearly teach us that true love is not achieved through domination. It takes mutual respect. It takes appreciation of each other's unique strengths. It takes a great deal of giving to each other."
"A quest for love is a quest for a helpmate kenegdo. It is a quest for someone who thinks differently and yet who will help you, not so much with the responsibilities of daily living as with the responsibilities of daily loving."
Deep Thoughts And Wisdom Apr 15, 2006
An inspiring book in a light hearted way. David Aaron interweaves biblical stories with real life tales of spiritual growth. I enjoyed the analogy how man would not be suited to having an animal as a help mate. Thus woman was created. Each chapter ends with some questions for thought which one can read again at a later date.
This is a short book but yet somewhat useful for future reference. Somehow many readers will want a little bit more. Some parts repeat themselves in spots. However, there is plenty of inspirtation to make one feel fulfilled.
"Wisdom in a "Bottle" Mar 20, 2006
This is the second book I am reading from Rabbi David Aaron. I am an octogonarian and have learned most of the wise teachings of Kabbala interpreted and explained in such an easy understandable languege,rather from long life experience, I think all young teen-agers and adults, should be taught and learn these "instructions" to life and enjoy a productive and meaningfull life. It is true that what one learns from experience - making mistakes - has more indelibility in ones phsyche, then just learning or studying. However knowing early in life the true purpose of life = love, could spare mankind of a lot of unnecesary suffering. Thank you Rabbi of making this deep and abstract "philosophy" so enjoyable and easily understandable. Kol KaChavod, Shalom V'Hatzlacha Rabba Alfred Dukes
great insight Feb 24, 2006
this gives you insight into the hebrew mindset and into old testament understanding.
Highly enjoyable, very enlightening and uplifting Nov 21, 2005
Rabbi Aaron offers new and interesting insights into how to form relationships without losing your autonomy. All this is based on Biblical principles and delivered in a concise manor followed by questions to ponder. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I tried reading The Purpose Driven Life, but I never made it past day six. I also highly recommend Rabbi Aaron's other books Seeing God and the Secret Life of God. You don't have to be Jewish to appreciate them. In fact he dispels the often cited myth of the "Old Testament" G-d as wrathful and unforgiving.