Monday, March 24, 2014

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Eye to the Infinite: The 3 Keys

Excerpt from Eye to the Infinite / REVISED EDITION – by Reb Aharon Rubin…

Another vital tool is speech. Speech automatically connects with the soul because speech comes from the soul. In the verse, “and G-d blew in his nostrils a spirit of life” (Gen. 2:7), Targum translates the latter half, “and man became a living soul”, as “and man became a speaking spirit”.[1] In other words, G-d’s ‘blowing’ Adam’s soul into his body, gave him the gift of speech. Man’s power of expression, his ability to use language, is innately specified and bound up, not in the human brain, but with the human soul. Which words we say and how we say them, determine our character, thought process and behaviour. The very act of speaking, especially when done with emotion, touches our innermost being.

Repetition is another important key. According to the Kabbalists, attainment of higher, mature states of conscious­ness can only be done if one first perfects the lower, im­mature states, the so-called inner child, states of restricted con­sciousness and the animalistic, egotistic urges of the Yetser HoRo. These are the foun­dations to the higher, mature states and their pe­riphery. The prophet or seeker of the Divine must first refine these lev­els before he can move higher.

During medita­tion, however, the conscious and subconscious mind merge, allowing the inner mind to surface, de­spite the restrictions and imperfections of im­mature states (this is similar to the sleep-state we will be exam­ining presently); focus­ing con­sistently on a thought or man­tra mutes the constant undercurrent of ego-originating messages, al­lowing the in­ner mind to come to the fore. Providing a point of fo­cus through repetition of a word, phrase or thought, is then an im­portant meditation technique.[2]

Regu­lar repetition of Mitsvos, bringing their performance to the level of habit, causes the practice of the Mitsvoh to have a mantra-like affect. When action is auto­matic and the mind is focused on the action’s in­ner in­ten­t, the mind is drawn into a medi­tative state.

We now have three keys: emotion, speech and repetition. Emotion, especially when connected to deep belief, opens wide the doors of the inner mind. By then using repetitious speech to bring the mind into focus, we have a pow­erful and formidable tool, enabling us to access deep and pro­found con­scious­ness.

Though focus, emotion, speech and repetition are all methods by which we can by­pass the subconscious’ “filter” and access higher con­scious­ness, using emotion (alone) has the disadvan­tage of arousing the ego, the antithesis of prophetic meditation. This will be addressed next.

Plaque: Meditation Bring your awareness to your breath. Acknowledge that G-d is with you. Say clearly, softly and slowly, “I love G-d and G-d loves me.” Breathe in slowly “I love G-d”. Breathe out, “G-d loves me.” (Imagine G-d looking at you with infinite love.) Now say, “G-d loves me and I love Him.” Breathe in, “G-d loves me”; breathe out “I love G-d.” (Feel that love. Imagine that G-d is looking at you, loving you, embracing and filling you with His infinite, eternal love.) Repeat, “I love G-d.” “G-d loves me.” (Feel the love). “G-d loves me.” “I love G-d.” (Feel the love increasing). Keep on repeating. Afterwards, learn Torah or make a blessing on spice or a drink. Record the session in your journal. Meditation Make yourself comfortable. Breathe slowly and deeply, bringing your awareness to your breath. Acknowledge that G-d is with you. Say clearly, slowly, ‘I love G-d and G-d loves me’. Breathe in ‘I love G-d’; breathe out, ‘G-d loves me’. (Picture that love. Imagine G-d looking at you with infinite love.) Now say, ‘G-d loves me and I love Him.’ Breathe in, ‘G-d loves me’; breathe out ‘I love G-d.’ (Feel that love. Imagine that G-d is looking at you and loving you, embracing and filling you with His infinite, eternal love.) Repeat, ‘I love G-d.’ ‘G-d loves me.’ (- Feel the love). ‘G-d loves me.’ ‘I love Him.’ (- Feel that love increasing). Keep on repeating, with silent fervour. Afterwards, learn some Torah or make a blessing on spice, food or drink. Record the results in your journal. [3]

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[1] Targum Onkelos, Onkelos the Proselyte’s Aramaic translation of Pentateuch (c.35–120 AD).

[2] This technique is also used in hypnosis. Dr. J. Braid (Man­chester, U.K. 1795-1860), the originator of the term “hypnosis,” initially called the hypnotic state “mono-ideism,” i.e. the focus of the mind on a specific idea to the exclusion of all else.

[3] This meditation was adapted from בוצינא דנהורא Botsinoh DiNehoiroh (R. Boruch of Mezibuth).

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