Tree of the Sephiroth

"The spontaneous fruit of the edenic tree."



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Andean Market in Cuzco, Peru

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Mystic Robert Fludd's seventeenth century drawing of the Sephirothic tree.

As one commentator on Qabbalah writes "The Tree of the Sephiroth may be considered an invaluable compendium of the secret philosophy which originally was the spirit and soul of Chasidism and the Qabbalah.

It must continually be emphasized that the Sephiroth and the properties assigned to them, like the tetractys of the Pythagoreans, are merely symbols of the cosmic system with its multitude of parts. The truer and fuller meaning of these emblems may not be revealed by writing or by word of mouth, but must be divined as the result of study and meditation."

"The Sephirothic Tree consists of ten globes of luminous splendor arranged in three vertical columns and connected by 22 channels or paths. The ten globes are called the Sephiroth and to them are assigned the numbers 1 to 10.

The three sounds–Ie - ho - va; in Jehovah–may also be said to represent Wisdom, Strength, and Beauty, which form the triune support of the universe, for it is written that the foundation of all things is the Three."

"... none can gain entrance to the secret House of Wisdom unless he wear the voluminous cape of Apollonius of Tyana and carry in his hand the lamp of Hermes. The cape signifies the qualities of self-possession and self-reliance which must envelope the seeker as a cloak of strength, while the ever-burning lamp of the sage represents the illumined mind and perfectly balanced intellect without which the mystery of the ages can never be solved."

The world of our senses is the house or vehicle of the deity -- dislaying a direct relationship between the House of the Deity and the universe -- for those who believe the Qabbalah reveals hidden cosmic knowledge. According to Qabbalistic teachings, God created the world with words uttered upon the breath -- therefore the word of each Sephirah is the creative force of that Sephirah.

(Pythagorean tetractys of addition, as interpreted by Robert Fludd, 1626)

A triangle separating light (Lux) from darkness (Tenebrae) arranged in the pythagorean manner.

The Pythagorian formulation













Earth Water Air Fire

The tetractys is a symbol composed of ten dots in an upward-pointing triangular formation. It was a sacred pattern for the school of philosophers who followed the teachings of the Greek sage Pythagoras (lived 6th century BC). They used the tetractys to swear their oaths upon, in much the same way that modern Christians swear oaths upon the Bible.

The Pythagorian formulation



2 tetra 3
4 5 6
7 8 9 10
Earth Water Air



The Four Elements