BY HELEN KIRBY
Here are some quick Qabalah basics:
Jewish mystics back in the day used Ten Emanations, or spheres, to represent the highest and most abstract ideas of Deity. Together, these Ten Spheres (Sephiroth in plural, and Sephira in singular) make up the Tree of Life. They are, in their English names, the Crown, Wisdom, Understanding, Mercy, Severity, Beauty, Victory, Glory, the Foundation, and the Kingdom.
Today, Qabalah is the basis for a plethora of magical and mystical systems.
The so-called Eleventh, or false Sphere (named Daath which means Knowledge) is still largely speculative within the Qabalistic and magical community. Some say it represents all the Ten united as one, others say it only appears when the highest Sphere, the Crown, does not.
Overall, occultists tend to agree that the Daath Sephira is some kind of finite reflection of the infinity of the Crown. The best blurb that I could find for it is that it is the “image of God embedded in humanity.”
A long time ago, I had named myself after the “false” Sephira because I felt unreal. Unreal, like many other first-generation Asian American girls growing up in a suburb.
For a long time, I grew up not realizing I looked different to everybody else in my class. Instead, I took insults and exclusion personally, as if there was something wrong with “me,” not just the way I looked. It also didn’t help that I had “strange” interests like Qabalah, esotericism, the occult, and liked girls as well as boys.
I wonder if the “false” sephirah, Daath, ever felt that way.
Like all magical mottos, the reason behind the name reveals itself to the practitioner over time, when the wisdom behind it is grasped in some personal way. When that is done, it is time to choose a different name.
For me, my name came to mean: find yourself in the world around you; or: Knowledge of Self.
This meant embracing my heritage, interests, personality, quirks and all. By doing so, I found that people began to accept me for me, instead of complaining that I wasn’t, “like them.”
Now, my motto is Nihil Obstat, Latin for, “there are no obstacles.”
For more self-study, The Urban Howl recommends The Universe Has Your Back: Transform Fear to Faith.
Sip a little more: