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Kabbalah: An Introduction to the Jewish Mystical Tradition

Kabbalah: An Introduction to the Jewish Mystical Tradition

Course Code: WE 160 NE (online-English)

Course Dates: Commences April 4th 2011

Instructor: Cody Bahir

Note: Within the wider academic field of Western Esotericism, scholars and new students often meet with the syncretic form of Christian Kabbalah while  studying esoteric history in the Renaissance period, and scholarly debate has at times dealt with the question of whether Kabbalah can even be fully considered part of the Western Esoteric corpus per se. Phoenix Rising Academy holds that in order to fully comprehend and absorb the full import of later syncretic versions of Christian and Renaissance Cabalah and Hermetic Qabalah, it is of paramount importance that its original history and content within the heart of the Jewish mystical tradition be fully understood first. This becomes doubly significant for anyone wishing to enter into practical engagement with the topic beyond a scholarly perspective, and while such an approach is beyond the purview of Phoenix Rising Academy, we see it as a matter of scholarly and educational responsibility that we provide a thorough foundation in the topic, taught by an instructor who has himself engaged with the subject from both scholarly and experiential perspectives.

Course Objectives: To familiarize students with the historical development of the Jewish mystical tradition and the complexities of its cosmology, philosophy, theology and practice. We start by examining select biblical and rabbinic references to mystical practices and experiences. We then explore the early flowerings of the Kabbalistic tradition and the evolution of the doctrine of the Sefirot (Tree of Life) from the medieval period through the present as primarily embodied by the Zohar, Lurianic Kabbalah and Hasidism. This course will also cover such central topics as Theurgy, Tikkun (spiritual repair), Magic, ritual, meditation as well as heterodox movements in order to provide students with a firm foundation upon which to pursue further study of any aspect of Kabbalah.

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Required Texts:

    • Aryeh Kaplan, Meditation and Kabbalah, Red Wheele, 1985.
    • Gershom Scholem, Major Trends in Jewish Mysticism, Schocken Books, 1995
    • Supplementary readings will be supplied by instructor

      Prerequisites: None . This course is a prerequisite for several of our other courses.

      Languages: English only. Our English language requirements do apply to this course.

      Delivery: Online only. A substantial amount of reading material will be made available to students through our online learning centre.

      This course may NOT be audited.
      Scholarships apply for this course.

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