Kabbalah uses words that we are all familiar with, but they can either be interpreted in the material sense or the spiritual one. When one is just starting to study the science of Kabbalah, one imagines everything it talks about through images of this world. Later one starts to think that Kabbalah does talk about spirituality, but in whatever form one imagines it to have. In reality, what he imagines is not yet spirituality, but just his own fantasies about it. Thus, one imagines various charts and images.
It’s not easy for a person to shift to the spiritual perception since it can only be felt through qualities that have no time, motion, or space. A person is unable to immediately imagine it in this form, and therefore he depicts various pictures and images. This is how he shifts from one screen to another, as if in a computer, until he finally corrects his perception.
Yet, the vocabulary and terminology remains the same throughout. I have thousands of changing screens, like in “Windows,” which are described by the same words. However, the picture is always changing. At first you imagine every term in the material sense, but gradually you start to imagine it more and more spiritually. Instead of imagining arms, legs, an embrace from the left, an embrace from the right, Rosh (head), and Toch (torso), you start to imagine qualities that don’t have any material form.
Even in the material world, quantum physics has revealed that there are no “solid” particles such as electrons, protons, and myons. Everything is smudged, like some sort of disappearing electron clouds that are actually closer to the notion of qualities. Nevertheless, the names remain the same because we don’t have any other place to take names besides our world.
But why do we have to be so pedantic and never change a single word? It’s because a word is the material branch that points to its elevated spiritual root. If we change the words, then we will confuse the connections between the roots and branches. Then it won’t be a science any longer. Imagine that we are chemists who randomly change the names of substances, and then start mixing them according to a formula to produce a chemical reaction. We will come up with a completely different substance.
This is why we always keep the same language, but constantly try to improve our perception of it, moving toward a more advanced, truer spiritual form.
From the 3rd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 4/12/10, “Exile and Redemption”