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The Name Adonai and the Holy Mother

Posted: Sun Aug 06, 2017 12:10 am
by SophiasNemo
I was wondering if you could explain to us in more detail what the name Adonai actually means and represents in relation to the Holy Mother (Shekinah), the human one and the Infinite One. I've often seen it to be generalized as Lord, but I wonder in what context is the word Lord used? What did the word Lord mean to the Jewish people in the original Kabbalah and is the name Adonai specifically male or does it represent a genderless divinity? Im trying to get a better grasp of these divine names and their meanings. Thanks!

Re: The Name Adonai and the Holy Mother

Posted: Sun Aug 06, 2017 9:21 am
by Tau Malachi
Greetings and blessings in the Holy Light of the Messiah!

The Name Adonai does, indeed, mean ‘Lord,’ and specifically ‘my Lord. Grammatically it is masculine, though it connotes ‘Sovereign,’ as in a king or queen. As a Name of the Infinite One, and as an action and manifestation of the One, it indicates the One as the life and light of all things, all creatures, the Holy One manifest as the entire matrix of creation, all realms, worlds and universes, and all that is in them; hence, the Holy Shekinah, the exterior Shekinah.

This Holy Name corresponds with Malkut, which receives the influxes of all of the upper Sefirot, and receiving corresponds with female in the Kabbalah; in turn, Malkut gives life and light to all of the realms, worlds and universes of creation, and giving corresponds with male in the Kabbalah, thus the Name of Adonai. In the Kabbalah the gender associations change depending upon the interactions and manifestations of the Sefirot, the Divine Attributes. Thus they can be ‘male’ or ‘female’ depending upon the mystery being spoken or revealed, or depending upon the manifestation of a Sefirah, giving and receiving, and so on. It’s simply a way to indicate secret mysteries, deep metaphysics, in terms of our human experience for the sake of contemplation so that we might acquire some insight and understanding.

Now, in general, Malkut is called Nukva, ‘female,’ Bat, ‘daughter’ and Kallah, ‘bride,’ and Binah is called Imma, ‘mother.’ Malkut, the Bride, is the lower or exterior manifestation of the Holy Shekinah, and Binah, the Mother, is the upper or interior manifestation of the Shekinah; generally, to speak of the Shekinah as ‘Holy Mother’ is to speak of Binah, and to speak of Shekinah as ‘Holy Bride’ is to speak of Malkut. In advanced teachings of the Kabbalah there are times in which Malkut is called ‘Mother,’ or it is said the “Bride becomes the Mother,” or it is said the Mother and Bride are unified, One; but most often ‘Mother’ corresponds with Binah and ‘Female,’ ‘Daughter,’ ‘Bride’ corresponds with Malkut.

The shifting between masculine and feminine associations reflects something essential, that though gender may arise from within the Infinite One, the Infinite One transcends gender; likewise, it reflects that all of these qualities, attributes, are all aspects of the Infinite One - we are speaking about the One God. Thus, to say ‘Father,’ ‘Mother,’ and so on, is to speak of the One, qualities, actions, manifestations, of the Infinite and Eternal.

Concerning Adonai, as well as the manifestation of light and life in all things, Adonai corresponds with our direct experience of God in the moment, the Living Presence of God in the moment; hence, the Holy One as That Which Is Transpiring within and behind that which appears. As such, Adonai also indicates that which is revealed and known of Yahweh - Eternal One, and Eheieh - Supernal One; therefore instead of speaking the Great Name of Yahweh in Judaic tradition Adonai is pronounced, and Adonai is called the “house of Yahweh.”

Adonai indicates the Living Presence of Yahweh (Shekinah of Yahweh), our experience of Yahweh - what is revealed and known of Yahweh. Though Yahweh is often translated as ‘Lord,’ Yahweh literally means ‘That Which Was, Is and forever Shall Be,’ and rather than a noun it is actually a verb; as such it indicates ‘being,’ and would be better translated as ‘Eternal One.’ There is that which we can know and understand of the Infinite and Eternal One - this is Adonai, and there is that which transcends our knowledge and understanding, or that is yet to be revealed, or that is concealed, hidden - this is Yahweh, or Eheieh. What is revealed and what is concealed, though, is inseparable, is all the Holy One, the Infinite and Eternal. Yahweh is Adonai, Adonai is Yahweh - aspects, actions, manifestations of the Holy One of Being.

In closing we can share that there is one ‘true’ Name of God in the Kabbalah - Yahweh, the ‘Explicit Name,’ and all other Names of God are qualities, actions, manifestations of The Name - Yahweh; Adonai is the Divine Presence, within creation, within us, yet ever beyond creation, ever beyond us.

This is a beginning for the contemplation of Adonai. Needless to say, the Names of God correspond with secret mysteries of God that run very deep, having layers and layers of interpretation and meaning as we become acquainted with them and they are revealed to us on an experiential level.

“Gnosis of the Cosmic Christ” is currently out of print, but if you can find a copy used there are good introductory teachings on the Names of God in it, along with other teachings on the Holy Sefirot.

May the Holy One bless you this day! Amen.

Shabbat Shalom!

Re: The Name Adonai and the Holy Mother

Posted: Sun Aug 06, 2017 7:46 pm
by SophiasNemo
Thank you so much. Very moving and detailed. It answered all my questions! Thank you!!!!

Re: The Name Adonai and the Holy Mother

Posted: Sun Aug 06, 2017 9:28 pm
by Bevan

Adonai indicates the Living Presence of Yahweh (Shekinah of Yahweh), our experience of Yahweh - what is revealed and known of Yahweh.
I’m trying to better understand the difference between the divine name Adonai (male) and the term Holy Shekinah (female), specifically as the lower or exterior manifestation. Can they be used interchangeably? When is it more appropriate to use one versus the other? Is the Holy Shekinah an attribute of the name of God, the presence or the radiant display, instead of a name of God itself?

What is interesting is that Adonai is a word explicitly used in the Old Testament, while the term Shekinah appears to only be alluded to as the glory of Yahweh on earth, as in:
Then the cloud covered the tent of meeting, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle. (Exodus 40:34)

How did Shekinah come to be used in Kabbalah as a description of the Holy Presence?

Thank you SophiasNemo for your question and Tau Malachi for your guidance. How wonderful to better understand more about the Holy One and our experience of this!


Re: The Name Adonai and the Holy Mother

Posted: Mon Aug 07, 2017 10:50 am
by Tau Malachi
Grace and peace to you in Messiah Yeshua!

The word Shekinah is used in the Holy Kabbalah because the word means ‘Divine Presence’ or ‘Indweller.’ There are numerous passages in the Holy Torah and prophets that indicate or connote the Holy Shekinah. If you wish to look into them study the Gates of Light by Rabbi Joseph Gikatilla, his chapter on the ‘Tenth Sphere’ cites many. There are direct references to the ‘presence of Yahweh’ dwelling among the children of Israel, or with the children of Israel, indicating something more than the glory of God - instead a ‘presence.’ As an example, while it says in the verse you quoted that the “glory of the Yahweh” filled the tabernacle, ‘radiance of the Holy Shekinah,’ it is known that the Shekinah - Divine Presence, dwelt in the holy of holies, concealed behind the veil, resting, as it were, upon the holy ark of covenant.

The word Shekinah is not a name, but it designates the presence of God - it is not a name, and therefore is not the same as a Name of God, such as Adonai. It is a general term, designation, for the Divine Presence, Living Presence, while the Names of God correspond with specific attributes, actions and manifestations of the Holy One; hence, specific manifestations of the Presence and Power of the Holy One (Shekinah of the Holy One). In this regard the Holy Shekinah can manifest as any or all of the Names of God - any divine attribute, divine action, of the Holy One. If you consider it, just as the Names of God correspond with aspects of the Holy One, so they are aspects of the Presence of the Holy One, the Holy Shekinah, for the Holy One and Shekinah are One - Achad.

Every Name of God corresponds with a manifestation of the Presence and Power of Holy One - the Holy Shekinah. Adonai corresponds with the most common and accessible manifestation of the Holy One, Shekinah.

As is known, the Divine Feminine corresponds with the Divine immanent in creation; hence, everything that is revealed of the Infinite and Eternal One, everything we experience, know and understand of the Holy One - this is the Holy Shekinah, the Divine Presence, on earth and in heaven, in the material, astral, spiritual and supernal dimensions.

As such, at times the Holy Shekinah is called Ha-Shem, The Name, for through the Holy Names - Divine Attributes and Actions, there is revelation of the One, knowledge of the One: Ain, Ain Sof, Ain Sof Or (Yahweh).

In closing we can say the Living Presence of the Holy One is the Holy One; but the Holy One is ever beyond any and all manifestations of the Divine Presence in creation. Thus we speak of the ‘Holy One and Shekinah,’ the concealed and revealed, transcendent and immanent.

Remember, though, this it is all a figure of speech pointing at, hinting at, Ain, the ‘No-Thingness,’ Ain Sof, ‘the Infinite,’ that is the source and foundation of all reality - the One God, the True Light (Ain Sof Or, ‘Infinite Light’).

May you be blessed to reach, returning to be One! Amen.

Shalom Aleichem!

Re: The Name Adonai and the Holy Mother

Posted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 8:12 am
by Linda B

I appreciate this discussion regarding Adonai and the Shekinah. Could you help clarify how the Holy Spirit relates to the Shekinah. Is the Holy Spirit, the Divine Presence in movement while the Shekinah, the Divine Presence in repose? Also how does the Holy Spirit relate to the Name/Divine Attributes? Is it the same as the Shekinah or different?

Thank you for your help.

Linda B

Re: The Name Adonai and the Holy Mother

Posted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 10:19 am
by Tau Malachi
Greetings and blessings in the Holy Light of the Messiah!

The Holy Shekinah, the Holy Spirit, are inseparable from one another, and in the Infinite One they are one and the same, and yet they are two distinct terms and are used in our Christian Kabbalah to indicate various subtle nuances in our experience of the Holy One, our experience of the presence and power of the Holy One. At times these two terms can indicate ‘repose’ and ‘movement,’ respectively, but then phrases like the ‘dance of the Shekinah’ and ‘angel of the Shekinah’ can also imply action, movement. In general Holy Shekinah indicates Divine Presence, and Holy Spirit indicates Divine Power, though Shekinah can also be used to indicate both the Divine Presence and Divine Power. Are the presence and power, or action and power, of the Holy One separate from one another? Not in the least, and yet, in our experience there can be a distinction between the presence and power, and so we may use the terms Holy Shekinah and Holy Spirit in a way that indicates a distinction between them. How we use these two terms is all a matter of the mysteries we are speaking about, or the experience from which we are speaking; hence, there is something of a mystical and poetic play in our use of Holy Shekinah, Holy Spirit. We intend these two terms to swirl together, sometimes being completely synonymous, sometimes indicating subtle distinctions - we tend to play with these two terms and often push the boundaries of their meaning.

In Hebrew, Holy Shekinah, Holy Spirit, are both feminine, both indicate the Divine Feminine.

Consider this: Shekinah, Divine Presence, corresponds with quality, attribute, and Holy Spirit, Divine Power, corresponds with action, force; a Sefirah is a Divine Attribute, and is a Divine Action, and the attribute and action are inseparable from one another, though we can speak of them as having a subtle distinction in our experience at times.

We often speak of the reception of the Holy Light and Spirit, but then the Holy Light and Spirit is also called the Shekinah of the Messiah in our Kabbalah - ‘Living Presence of the Anointing.’

All of the Sefirot are the manifestation of the Holy Light and Spirit of the Infinite, and with each there is a specific manifestation of the Holy Shekinah - Malkut within each. What shall we say? These terms get very swirly in our teachings, in our experience, in our spiritual realization, and through our play with them deep secret mysteries are revealed to those who have ears to hear them.

I would not be inclined to pin these terms down too much, for then it would ruin them.

The Holy Shekinah, the Holy Spirit, sometimes they are synonymous in our experience and teachings, but then sometimes they are not synonymous in our experience and teachings; but that’s not surprising, because direct spiritual and mystical experiences of the Holy One are mysterious - the Holy One is the Supreme Mystery, and so also the presence and power of the Holy One, the Infinite and Eternal.

O Holy One we bless You, and we bless Your Holy Name - Holy Shekinah! Amen.

Shalom Aleichem!

Re: The Name Adonai and the Holy Mother

Posted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 12:37 pm
by Linda B
Thank you for this teaching. This dance between the Shekinah and the Holy Spirit has always been a mystery to me. Now I have a better understanding of why it's been so swirly.

In Gratitude,
Linda B

Re: The Name Adonai and the Holy Mother

Posted: Thu Aug 10, 2017 9:09 am
by Tau Malachi
Grace and peace to you in Yeshua Messiah!

There is something more to be said of the Holy Spirit, Ruach Ha-Kodesh, given what has been said of the Shekinah and Holy Spirit previously in our discussion.

As we know, wisdom is a common term for enlightenment in the Holy Torah and Gospel, and the other common term for enlightenment is Ruach Ha-Kodesh, the Holy Spirit. It is associated in the Scriptures with enlightenment and prophecy, and as is known the Holy Spirit is called the ‘Spirit of Truth’ and said to lead into ‘all truth’ in the Gospel of St. John; hence, the ‘Spirit of Enlightenment,’ leading to enlightenment, or divine illumination. Understanding this, to receive the Holy Light and Spirit from above, receiving the Holy Spirit corresponds with something of the enlightenment experience, the experience of higher, more expanded state of consciousness, greater intelligence, greater perception, a greater presence of awareness, and therefore greater clarity and insight, greater knowledge, understanding and wisdom, and greater love and compassion. In general there is a greater manifestation of the qualities of God, the Divine Attributes, with the reception, experience, of the Holy Spirit, and in the full reception, embodiment, of the Holy Spirit there may be an experience of Mochin Gadlut, or God Consciousness at the level of the spiritual or the supernal, supramental; hence the experience of the Perfect Thunder Intelligence - fullness of the Holy Spirit.

All who have received the true anointing have experienced something of this, and if and when we encounter a living tzaddik we witness something of this in their teaching and imparting of initiation - light transmission. We watch teachings freely flow from them with clarity and understanding, with an intelligence beyond the ordinary human intellect - a fiery divine intelligence, and there is distinct power in their thoughts, words, and in their prayers, contemplations and meditations - the Holy Spirit, and they are able to communicate something of that power of their spiritual or supernal realization to us, something of the Divine Presence and Power that is within them and that surrounds them. All who have received the true anointing experiences something of this and participate in this, more or less, and as we walk with the Lord (Adonai), as we walk with the Holy Shekinah, more and more the Holy Spirit moves with, in and through us, more and more there is this enlightenment experience.

It is well known that there are three principle aspects of the soul involved in our incarnations, neshamah, our heavenly soul, divine nature - the ‘breath of God,’ ruach, our spirit or intelligence, and nefesh, our vital soul. As Ruach Ha-Kodesh implies, receiving the Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit merges with and transforms our ruach, more or less, and as such we have a ‘Holy Ruach,’ and with the Holy Ruach, Holy Spirit, we are able to realize and embody our neshamah - who and what we are in malkut shamaim, the’ kingdom of heaven,’ and the Holy One.

As perhaps you might intuit there are many grades of the experience of Ruach Ha-Kodesh reaching into the Primordial and Supernal One, the One-without-End.

Ruach means ‘spirit’ or ‘wind,’ and like the wind the Holy Spirit is revealed and known when in motion; when at rest, still and silent, she is hidden, concealed.

When a person is in an experience of the Holy Spirit there is a distinct and corresponding manifestation of the Divine Presence with them that can be perceived by those who have faith, those open and sensitive to the Spirit of God, and so it may be said that the ‘Holy Shekinah rests upon them’ and they are illuminated by the Holy Spirit - ‘on fire with the Spirit.’ Praise God!

As you might imagine the experience of the Holy Spirit corresponds with various gradations of nearness, oneness, with the Holy One; indeed, for such is the very nature of enlightenment according to the Kabbalah. Thus, there may be experiences of nearness, oneness, corresponding with Adonai, or corresponding with Yahweh, or corresponding with Eheieh, and there can be experiences of unification, oneness, with any of the Holy Names, or Divine Attributes, Divine Actions; this, in turn, generates various manifestations of the Holy Shekinah, various aspects of the Presence and Power of the Holy One embodied.

In this you will understand that when we use the term Holy Spirit often we are indicating the enlightenment experience - or enlightenment itself, and we may say that when we use the term Holy Spirit in this way Shekinah may be used to indicate the presence and power of the realization and embodiment of that enlightenment experience, the presence of divine or enlightened being.

Truly, there are layers and layers of interpretation and meaning of these two terms - they run very deep in our spiritual and mystical vocabulary!

May you be uplifted in the Spirit this day, returning to be One! Amen.

Shalom Aleichem!