A question I received: What is faith in Kabbalah?
My Answer: In Kabbalah, faith is bestowal. It’s when one is able to bestow despite his will to receive. This is called, “faith above reason.”
A person’s nature is the will to receive, and faith is the property of bestowal that’s opposite to our nature. The only way for us to acquire the property of bestowal is with the help of the Upper Light, because it gives us the ability to rise above ourselves and to act out of a different desire: for the sake of others, or for the sake of the Creator. One then acts out of this desire, instead of one’s own, natural desire. And because of this, one becomes dependent on the Upper Level (one becomes “the Creator’s slave”) rather than on oneself (a “slave to oneself”).
Therefore, if you have faith in me, it means that you act for my sake with all of your abilities. Actually, you become like me. That is because normally, every person is completely opposite to another. But if someone has faith in me, it means he has neutralized his desires in regard to me, and through these desires, he and I are one.
The opposite of faith is knowledge, which is when we act for the sake of our own desires. Faith, however, is when we act for the sake of fulfilling the desires of others. When a person has this quality, he is able to sense things outside of himself, through the desires of others. And what one senses through these desires is the higher, spiritual world. This is why faith is closely related to love (love for another person), because love is the ability to replace one’s own desire with the desire of another person, and to fulfill that desire.
As you can see, in Kabbalah, faith is when a person masters the quality of bestowal – a higher quality. Clearly, this bears no relation to faith as it is understood in our world: believing in what someone else says and accepting it as a fact. With this kind of faith, I may accept another person’s mistake or false belief as a fact, and then use it as a foundation for all my actions and my entire life.
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