A question I received: I have been very curious about this for a long time. We say that Kabbalah is not religion, or does not require a particular belief system, yet atheism is now considered a religion among many and it is one of the fastest growing, though that may be a contradiction in terms, as many consider religion a system of belief in God. In any case, we have said Kabbalah study is secular, so my question is – can an atheist be a Kabbalist, or does Kabbalah require a belief in God? After all, in Kabbalah the idea is to become like the Creator.
My Answer: Kabbalah differs from “everything else” (religion or not) in that it facilitates a clear attainment of the Creator, so that you will feel Him like you feel a friend of yours, and even more. Hence there is no room in Kabbalah for belief in something others have told to you. Rather, you have to attain yourself, the entire world, and all the souls, and inside them – the Creator in His entirety.
Atheism is a belief that the Creator does not exist, whereas religion is a belief that the Creator does exist. In contrast, Kabbalah is the revelation of the Creator, through researching Nature inside yourself or inside your perceptions.
In this regard, Kabbalah is similar to other sciences. However, the other sciences reveal the world within the senses that we already have, whereas Kabbalah does it in an additional sense – the soul, which you first have to develop inside you. In any case, just like any other science Kabbalah speaks only about the things that are present in one’s senses! It is not interested in anything that’s imperceptible and that cannot be researched, repeated, and tested, and considers these things unreal. This approach makes it a science by definition. See the definition of Kabbalah in Baal HaSulam’s article “The Essence of the Wisdom of Kabbalah” – “Kabbalah is the method of revealing the Creator to man in our world” – to every person and to everyone together.
Like all sciences, Kabbalah uses the scientific method or instrument (even though scientists find it difficult to agree with this because they are used to researching the world only through the animate body). The scientific method assumes that:
- Every scientific statement must be proven by experiment.
- Every scientific statement can be proven wrong.
- It is pointless to discuss an idea that cannot be verified in practice. For example, here is a scientific opinion about G-d’s existence: Immanuel Kant showed that it cannot be proven that G-d exists as well as that He does not. The very notion of an unattainable and almighty G-d is not subject to experiment, because if G-d is almighty, then he’s able to control the outcome of the experiment. People don’t accept G-d through evidence, but through faith. Hence, the idea of G-d is beyond science. Any question that asks “Why is so and so this way?” can be answered, “Because it’s G-d’s will.” (This is how religion compelled people to answer all questions, and therefore it slowed down scientific progress.) Kabbalah allows one to reveal the Creator and His actions in practice. However, it is just as indifferent to the things that cannot be verified in practice as the earthly sciences.
- Every scientific statement must be logical and not contradict the laws that are already known. Usually, the old laws become particular cases of the new laws.
- Every scientific statement must indicate its “weak spots”; it should mention which of it constituents are subject to doubt and objection.
Laitman.com Post: Kabbalah Leaves No Room for Faith
Laitman.com Post: Some Quotes by Albert Einstein
UPI Article: “Everybody’s God”
Kabbalah Today Article: “Contradictory Phenomena”
What the Bleep!? – Quantum Physics Meets Kabbalah