Why was the study of the kabbalah banned?

Mya Purdy asked a question: Why was the study of the kabbalah banned?
Asked By: Mya Purdy
Date created: Mon, Feb 8, 2021 8:08 AM

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  • The study of Kabbalah is banned because of such danger, and genuine study is nearly lost in our time. Black magic is the only kind of magic. Sefer ha-Chinuch defines magic as a destructive force with no constructive abilities, however the author admits that he is not quite sure what magic is.

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And this may explain why R Landau was prepared to revert to such an extreme measure as banning the study of Kabbalah. This suggestion would hold true considering, as mentioned earlier, that R. Landau was indeed respected by both Talmudists and Kabbalists and in fact had previously participated in the circulation of Kabbalistic works while serving at the Brody Kloyz .

The anti-Sabbatean 1756 Brody Cherem, which was endorsed by the Va’ad Arba Aratzot, the Council of Four Lands, banned the study of Lurianic kabbalah for those under age forty. It did, however, permit the study of the Zohar, Shomer Emunim by Rabbi Yosef Ergas and Pardes Rimonim by Rabbi Moshe Cordovero for those above age thirty."

Ban on studying Kabbalah The Rabbinic ban on studying Kabbalah in Jewish society was lifted by the efforts of the 16th-century kabbalist Avraham Azulai (1570–1643). I have found it written that all that has been decreed Above forbidding open involvement in the Wisdom of Truth [Kabbalah] was [only meant for] the limited time period until the year 5,250 (1490 C.E.).

The anti-Sabbatean 1756 Brody Cherem, which was endorsed by the Va’ad Arba Aratzot, the Council of Four Lands, banned the study of Lurianic kabbalah for those under age forty. It did, however, permit the study of the Zohar, Shomer Emunim by Rabbi Yosef Ergas and Pardes Rimonim by Rabbi Moshe Cordovero for those above age thirty. 10

The ban forbidding study of the Zohar was lifted in 1540 when the balance of power shifted to the Ashkenazi rabbis. Luria's Kabbalah opus was published after his death, and Kabbalah replaced Hakirah ( Mishne Torah) as Judaism's mainstream theology.

Why study Kabbalah? The reason we study Kabbalah is not just to learn, but to apply what we learn to our lives. We study to gain wisdom, and wisdom is the combination of what we learn and what we do. Studying spirituality is all about taking what we learn from our books and classes and then assimilating and molding this knowledge into a pattern ...

I have found it written that all that has been decreed Above forbidding open involvement in the Wisdom of Truth [Kabbalah] was [only meant for] the limited time period until the year 5,250 [1490 A.D.]. From then on after is called the "Last Generation", and what was forbidden is [now] allowed.

A: The holy Ari said that everyone could study the wisdom of Kabbalah, provided they have the desire. A desire is when a person feels an inner need to answer the question, “What am I living for?” If such a desire does not give us peace of mind, then we must study the wisdom of Kabbalah. Kabbalah exists only for that.

According to many conservative rabbis, there is a danger when people who study Kabbalah take these sexual expressions literally rather than metaphorically. Reb Zalman was of course aware of all this. He was also aware that if people follow the Baal Shem Tov’s instructions in prayer, but not in bed, it is hollow and ridiculous.

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