A question I received: Why does Kabbalah talk about “the signs of the zodiac” (Mazalot), making it seem like it has a connection to astrology?
My Answer: Well, where did astrology take all of these notions from, if not Kabbalah? The use of this terminology dates back to Abraham. After all, our entire system on all levels (inanimate, vegetative, animate, and speaking) is parallel to the system of the Upper Worlds, from where forces descend and become imprinted in our world on all levels. This is why we see the same correlations in the celestial constellations, as they are built by the same laws in accordance with the connection of the branch and root.
The only problem is our approach. The text Midrash Raba (The Great Commentary) says that Abraham used to come outside at night to look at the stars. He would ask, “Am I under the stars’ control or is there an Upper Force that is higher than all of them?” If I am under the power of the stars, then I have to worship them, but if there is an Upper Force above them, then the stars are mere signs. Granted, these signs are correct when read by those who know how to read them in order to tell what is happening in the system above them. After all, all the events take place parallel in all the systems (or worlds) from Above downward. We only have to know how to read or interpret them.
Yet, do all the astrology experts really understand this? If they are like Haman, who is described in “Megilat Ester” as being a great astrologist, then it would be interesting for us to hear what this great astrologist has to say. After all, he had attained the Creator!
A person who desires to attain the truth aspires higher than the stars and the signs of the zodiac. This is why we view the celestial signs as mere symbols demonstrating higher forces. Our real aim is to attain the Force that governs these symbols, to unite with It, and to rise to Its level.
The celestial signs are structured in the same way as the signs of Zeir Anpin “in the sky,” which is Bina. All the stars in the sky are Bina’s connection with Zeir Anpin, and we are influenced by them when they attain Sefira Yesod. A person who knows how to read this “celestial book” can understand these symbols.
But what use is it for us to understand these signs? Our focus and attention must be higher than the stars and the signs of the zodiac. We have to look to the force that controls them. Therefore, it is forbidden to engage in astrology because it obstructs us from attaining the goal of creation. It doesn’t lead us to the goal, but distracts us from it.
If a person ascends and attains the Upper System, then he understands all the signs and how they are reflected below. Yet, he is not interested in this, because his entire work is focused on the Upper Forces, which influence his soul directly. He isn’t interested in mechanical signs in our world, which are simply a lower level demonstration of what has already occurred higher. Even the occurrences that will take place in the future have already descended and materialized; we simply don’t feel them yet.
Therefore, there is no use trying to reveal the future because we will not be able to change our fate this way. If you want to change your fate, you have to ascend to the level of fate. This is the level of luck (Mazal) – the level of the Light.