Bereshit A: Chapter 25

Idolatry, bloodshed and incest


These three negative actions are the primary cause of the entire world's negativity. In a lengthy discussion, the Zohar expounds upon their metaphysical source.

The Kabbalists teach us that idolatry does not only pertain to man-made statues and icons. An idol is defined as any material possession or external situation that controls our emotions, our behavior, or our motivation. When any such circumstance determines or influences our experience of life, we have surrendered control and severed our connection to the Light, which is the true source of fulfillment.

Often, our negative tendencies lead us to become worshippers of wealth or disciples of our own ego. formatting

The sin of bloodshed does not refer exclusively to cold-blooded killing. Bloodshed occurs when we publicly or privately disgrace or humiliate others, causing the blood to rush to their face out of embarrassment.This includes, for example, character assassination caused by an evil tongue.

The Hebrew word for, and connotation of, incest is not limited to sexual relations between direct family members. It also includes adulterous relations between a married woman and another man; a man that marries two sisters; and relations between a stepbrother and stepsister. Even though the stepbrother and stepsister are not connected by blood, a spiritual bond is created when their respective parents join together in marriage. In Kabbalah, spiritual connections are far more significant than blood relations. The spiritual forces released by the letters of this section protect and purify us from these negative actions.