i’m in a mood tonight to make william burroughs look like enid blighton

I have been pondering this for two or three days and it seems like a fairly stable flight of fancy, so to speak. You don’t have to believe it, but for me, in my psychotic way, it represents the next logical step along the gangplank of actuality. You recall that our takeaway from the mysterious Tishby’s officially untranslated “Doctrine of Evil” was that the entire root of the problem is this cursed castration or, as they call it, circumcision. I argued that the trauma on the unprotected neonate is such as to invite the demons into the poor little mite’s very soul on a permanent basis, so naturally all Jewish males are soulless monsters. This is an appalling and probably illegal thing to say, but it’s rather obvious if you allow yourself to consider it objectively. Now, as you can easily imagine, there are beings of various sorts which exist upon different planes of consciousness. The kabbalists distinguish four planes. The entities in the four levels are (working from the bottom up):

  1. material bodies such as our own, with purely animal consciousness extinguished at death;
  2. minds such as our own, themselves also mortal but which act as the bases for the attraction of
  3. souls… for want of a convenient better word… and these souls are definitely above us, be they angels, devils, root-souls in the kabbalistic sense, or what C S Lewis in “That Hideous Strength” (a masterpiece of 1950s catholic science fiction, recommended), called “macrobes”. My personal belief is that it is only by being taken up into one of these macrobes that the (mind of the) human individual attains to immortality, but that they are non-moral, much more so than we are. They have no particular concepts of “good & evil,” in my view. Some of them have become addicted in a sort of a vampiric way to the continuous sacrifices of flesh, blood and agony that we call circumcisions. In return they provide supernatural aid to the Jews.
  4. Finally, which is somewhat of a stretch, some sort of over-mind perhaps. Not AFAIAC ‘God’. An over-mind would be more or less the same as ‘God’ in the sense of ‘process theology’, which is something cooked up by masons & you-guessed-it. I would think of it as Hegelian in the sense that Hegelian logic would determine its evolution, if anything did, but there might be as it were factions within it as it evolves. And for Hegel it would have a consummation, an end point, but not for me. And I think this is the mirror image of the bottommost world, which is the world of the shells, or material universe, for which the Marxian logic is more appropriate than the Hegelian – RB


  1. tiqla
    Posted April 4, 2016 at 4:03 am | Permalink

    I don’t know if this appears in the tishby book you quote constantly but Luria himself says that this material world is רובו רע ‘for the most part bad/evil= theoretically %99.99999999……….So this gives license to any theory of theodicy and despair.

  2. niqnaq
    Posted April 4, 2016 at 4:12 am | Permalink

    Yes, the general idea is that the entire manifest universe is an excretion of noxious matter from above (“stern judgments”). After all, this is gnosticism. The fallen sparks have pretty much all been retrieved since they wrote, I guess, though there will always be odd ones turning up in unexpected places. The great excursus on the circumcision (or castration) starts pretty much ex nihilo somewhere in the second half, and ends pretty much in mid-air, so to speak. The angels convert all the foreskins into hashmal, whatever that is, and use it to plug the hole to keep the devils from the anti-universe out of this universe, the positive one as they fondly imagine it to be.

  3. niqnaq
    Posted April 4, 2016 at 4:22 am | Permalink

    I could send you the hebrew pdf of the Tishby book by email if you want. The reason I have been transcribing it is that it isn’t a machine-readable text, they never are. I have a book by Ronit Meroz, head of the kabbalah dept at HUJI now (which must be the ultimate surrealistic dream job in the world), and I can’t machine-read that either. But it is possible that it would be machine-readable for you. If so, I would be interested to know how. I am seriously thinking of getting an iPad, anyway. Everything I have now is Ubuntu (Linux).

  4. niqnaq
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 12:06 am | Permalink

    Fallen sparks: concretely, lost Jewish conversos, or rather the descendants thereof. Until they are identified and recovered ‘for the Jewish people’ as we say nowadays, the process of tikkun cannot proceed further, towards the elimination of the shells altogether, which Tishby uses as his dramatic finale (this being 1942).

    I have a problem here, which is the definition of the special ‘Jews-only’ soul, if anybody wants to comment on that. I mean, if this is a higher order of soul altogether, not just a tag saying “hey, I’m a Jew!”, then it ought to have a few properties to distinguish itself as such. If you’ve read Chaim Vital’s diaries, you know how confused he is. Probably, he will say that the Ari says that you will know you have this superior Jewish soul, just because you know you’re a Jew. In other words, because you know you’re a Jew, you can have faith that you also have this higher soul. But I am asking about what happens if you don’t know (or can’t prove) you’re a Jew. Have you still got this special soul lurking within you? How would you know? Or, how could you prove it?

    Answer: you couldn’t. It would overwhelm the rabbinical defense systems against interlopers, if you could. The idea that a person could demonstrate in some non-halachic way that they were somehow intrinsically possessed of a Jewish soul, and therefore should be ‘recognised’ as being Jewish, rather than needing conversion…. well, it’s obviously out of the question. If there were such a prodigy, a quickie conversion pro forma would be much more sensible, but such a thing does not exist in the discursive field (that is, one doesn’t talk about it).

    You might then say, what is all this about quickie conversions and non-halachic Jews? If you really had this supposed “Jews-only soul” as you call it, then you would not be talking about quickie conversions and neglect of halachah. On the contrary, you would be devouring the halachah, all four ells of it! It would be sweet as honey in your mouth! To which I reply that thistles are not sweet in anybody’s mouth, except possibly a donkey’s. And to me that is all that the halachah is, not ‘the law’ but ‘the fence around the law’, made of thistles.

    BTW, I keep writing down here that the ‘Jews-only soul’, if it existed, would correspond to the Lurianic Hayyah or Yehidah, and then I keep remembering that this is absolutely impossible, because this higher soul is nothing like a tag that you can find them with amidst the galut on earth, this is a truly higher soul which dwells in B’riah, not in the galut.

  5. niqnaq
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 7:28 am | Permalink

    I don’t know who is reading this peculiarly echoing thread, but having spelled out all the above, I am going to jump to the concrete conclusion that whatever a Jewish soul is, I have got one, and I can prove it too, and in the process, prove a contentious point about hereditary awareness. I believe that my mother’s mother was really Jewish. She and my mother’s father-to-be, a British army captain, colluded to conceal the fact of her alien (Austrian Jewish) origin in their marriage declaration of Nov 24 1917 (a copy of which I have), by stealing the identity of an English country girl who happened to have a foreign surname (thus covering the fact
    of her accent). They managed this so effectively that even their own daughter (my mother) never knew the truth (not courageous enough to enquire, probably). I would have to spend a great deal on private dicks to prove that claim myself. But I’m probably entitled to demand some examination of the claim on my behalf from some sort of Jewish ‘heritage’ outfit. I spent a whole year studying for conversion (with a masorti rabbi), but the more fundamental idea that I just plain am Jewish anyway, never seemed welcome.

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