Four Camps

Elder Gideon
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Four Camps

#1 Postby Elder Gideon » Sat Aug 11, 2018 10:19 am

Shalom Tau Malachi:

I'm moved to ask about times of prayer and cardinal directions as they pertain to the principle of the four camps of the Shekinah. I've found in more than one place in Zohar (1:33b) how these four camps correspond to the four matriarchs. I also recall a discussion of camps in context of the merkavah (2:136a). To the circular shape, you attributed mysteries of hayyot; to the directions, the cherubim. Perhaps wheels and vehicle interact in these metaphors.

Over my summer, I've been drawn to invoke and pray through a growing sense of this mystery, relating the camps of the Shekinah as hosts that heal (east), defend (south), prophesy (west), and illuminate (north). By calling more recently upon Yah YHVH Yeshua, this is expanding. My desire in communion is to identify as the One with the needs of people corresponding to these directions, elements, and yesodot. Something very grounding in solidarity with everyone in these times is opening my heart and mind to how to be in and love the world as it is.

Given your teachings of the Straight Path, how may I grow this awareness in practice of the four camps surrounding the Shekinah?


Elder Gideon

Tau Malachi
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Re: Four Camps

#2 Postby Tau Malachi » Fri Aug 17, 2018 10:07 am

Greetings and blessings to you in the Holy Light of the Messiah!

There are two sets of attributes of directions through which you may contemplate the times of prayer. The first, to which the camps of the Holy Shekinah correspond, is that of the traditional invocation of the sacred circle, beginning in the east, the place of dawn, following the cycles of the day and life through south, west and north, returning to the east. There are secret mysteries to be discerned in the contemplation of the times of prayer in this way, morning prayer corresponding with the east, afternoon prayer with the south, evening prayer with the west, and the final prayer laying down with the north, following the path of the sun. The fifth additional prayer when offered at midnight corresponds with center, or with ‘above’ and ‘below.’ Here we may remind that the camp of healing is also a camp of initiation, rebirth and renewal, the camp of protection or defense is also the camp of the force of will, strength, courage and fortitude, the camp of prophecy is also the camp of reflection and contemplation, and sight into the hidden, unseen worlds, and the camp of illumination is also the camp of ascension and manifestation. Thus there can be en expansion of invocations and prayers with regard to these holy camps of angels in the Divine Presence, Holy Shekinah.

Understand, though, that the standard attribute of the times of prayer and the directions isn’t based upon the traditional invocation and attributes of the directions of the sacred circle associated with it, but rather it is based upon the Sefirot and the directions assigned to the Sefirot in the Sefer Yetzirah. Thus, morning prayer corresponds with Mercy-Hesed, which is ‘south,’ and noon prayer corresponds with Judgment-Gevurah, which is ‘north,’ and evening prayer corresponds with Compassion-Rehamim (Tiferet), which is ‘east,’ and the final laying down prayer corresponds with Foundation-Yesod; the additional pray of arising at midnight corresponding with the unification of the exterior and interior Shekinah, Malkut-Binah. As we know with the revealed invocation of sacred circle that’s oriented to the World of the Sefirot rather than to this world, there is a change in the attribute of archangels and angels so that Gabriel stands in the north and Oriel in the west. The times of prayer are most commonly attributed this way because turning to God in prayer we turn our face away from creation and towards God, and invoking, we cleave to God through the Most Beautiful Names and Attributes of God Most High.

If you consider the four camps of the Holy Shekinah, these are oriented to creation and the manifestation of the needs of creatures, creation. Naturally, in invocation and prayer something of this intersects so that turning to God we also pray for creatures and creation to receive the grace, mercy and blessings of God.

So there are these two ways of contemplating the times of prayer and the directions of the sacred circle.

May the Lord bless you and keep you! Amen.

Shalom Aleichem!
Tau Malachi
Sophia Fellowship
Ecclesia Pistis Sophia

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