Abûlʿafiyā, Avrāhām (1240-1291)
The Spanish kabbalist Abraham Abulafia (1240- after 1291) advocated a concept of Kabbalah that had little or nothing to do with the well-known schools of thought. He considered Kabbalah neither as a form of gnosis nor as a kind of theosophical theory that concentrates on the Sefirot, the emanation of the Divine Being. Instead he attempted to attain a state of prophetic-mystical ecstasy, based on his conviction that the experience of the prophets was an ecstatic experience and that all true mystics were prophets. This work of his was especially popular and circulated under the titles Hayyei ha-Olam ha-Ba ("Life of the World to Come"), Sefer ha-Shem ("Book of the Divine Name") or Sefer ha-Iggulim ("Book of Circles"); in this manuscript, however, it is called Sefer ha-Shem ha-Meforash ("Book of the Ineffable name"). The manuscript presents ten inscriptions in concentric circles in red and black ink, as well as 128 only in black ink. They contain detailed instructions for mystical meditation. While contemplating these circles, one should recite the 72-lettered name of God, which is arrived at by combining the numerical values of the letters in the names of the twelve tribes of Israel, of the Patriarchs, and the nine letters of the words shivtei yisra'el ("the tribes of Irasel"). The reader should "enter" each of the triple black and red circles at the point where an "entrance" is designated by means of a small pen stroke.
Online Since: 12/18/2014
- Abûlʿafiyā, Avrāhām (Author)