Monday, December 5, 2016

Withdrawal or Contraction?

For those who have studied the story of the "Tzimtzum" from Lurianic Kabbalah, I have always wondered why the "Tzimtzum" is often translated as "the contraction". I would have expected that the word "withdrawal" would have been a more idiomatically apt description of the event.

Today, it dawned on me that besides "contraction" being a better literal translation, it also points to an important aspect of the event. The "Tzimtzum" didn't simply happen by the Infinite Light withdrawing from a space. It happened via a polarization of the earliest expression of cosmic masculine and feminine.

During this polarization, the components of the cosmic feminine gathered together from out of the fabric of the Infinite Light and then "contracted", forming the "Reshimu" or the "afterglow". (It is misleading to think of the newly formed area as hollow or empty. That was only in a very relative sense.)

So it is the "contraction" of the cosmic feminine which was a very key driving force behind the event - making the term "contraction" far more idiomatically correct than I initially thought.


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