For Isaac Luria - HaAri
1534 - 1572
Chapter One: in which Heaven and Earth-- and Light-- are created.
1. In the beginning, there was God.
2. God was – is – will always be - endless and forever. There was no place that was not God. In fact, there was no Place. No Something or Nothing or Anywhere. Not even an Anything as finite as a Somewhere. There was just God.
3. And because there was no Place, there was no space into which God could bring forth Creation, and creating was God's greatest and truest desire. So into the Infinity that was God, into that Divine Everything, God gathered in Her (His) breath, so that there could be an Emptiness into which there could be created a Somethingness.
4. And in that breath, into that Divine contraction, God spoke, and the World came to be. There was Heaven, there was Earth, and into this roiling, riotous, joyous and searing Act, into this rending of the Endlessness into Somethingness, there was Light.
5. And God declared that it was Good.
6. Now understand: this Light was like no light you have ever seen. It was neither sunlight nor starlight - they would not be created for several more Days. This was the Light of Creation itself.
7. This Light was pure and luminous and filled with Everything that God thought to speak into being. God didn't miss a thing (as if God could!). The Light of God blazed forth and illuminated the All, growing brighter and brighter, creating shadows where once there was only God.
8. "What a shame," God thought, "that My Light should overshadow all My other creations."
9. So God thought to capture His (Her) - or really, no Pronoun at all, because God is an Endlessness, defying division - so God thought to capture the Light, and contain it.
Chapter Two: In which the Light is Contained.
1. God crafted ten Vessels, made of Earth and Air and Fire and Water.
2. And God is okay with inconsistency; some of these elements hadn't quite been created yet, and weren't on the docket for several more Days. God didn't let that get in the way of a good story.
3. Into these Vessels God placed the Light of Creation, that shone with the holiness of God - that illumined the Everything of Creation and Eternity with God's own radiance, and which contained all the sacredness and transcendence that God could gather. But this was an awful lot of holiness to occupy the same Place at the same time as Anything or Everything all at once.
4. The Light stretched itself up and out, seeking a path in which to flow and leap and dance. The Vessels, though, were static, being made of Earth and Air and Fire and Water. They could not hold that holy radiance, though they tried - oh! They tried to stretch with the Light, and move with it, and so contain it all.
5. Instead of moving with the fluid grace of that radiant Light, those Vessels, crafted by God, made beautiful and holy by God, those Vessels shattered.
Chapter Three: in which the Light, along with the Vessels, is scattered
1. The shards of those shattered Vessels were scattered into the Everywhere. The Light, once contained, rose and leaped and was free again.
2. It soared and danced and sang a psalm, a joyous hymn to God. "Hallelujah!" cried the Light.
3. The Light grew brighter, illuminating Heaven and Earth and All that was in between, brighter and faster and more luminous--
4. More holy, infusing the darkness with Light--
5. More radiant, wrapping around the Everything it touched--
6. Over and under, everywhere and all at once: holy, holy, holy! In the space of a heartbeat (though hearts were long from being Created), in a moment of Endlessness (though there were Beginnings), the Light, with each turn and tumble and leap, left behind a Spark, nestled in the subtle curve and rough edges in each of those myriad and broken pieces.
7. And so the Vessels, though they could not contain that holy and sacred Light, could instead be sheltered by It. Could instead offer shelter to It.
8. A multitude of Broken. An Infinity of Holy, bound together, scattered to the Everywhere of Heaven and Earth.
Chapter Four: In which Things are Revealed
1. God watched that shimmering cascade, reminding Him (Her) (God) of celestial fireflies on a clear summer night (for while there were finally fireflies, Summer was still a long way off) (But God can remember forward, so it was Good). God saw, but was sad.
2. Creation, by its very nature, is an Act of separation. It is a Breaking-- glorious and breathtaking in its wondrousness to be sure-- but a Breaking nonetheless. Creation makes a space where once there was none, separates the Not into the Is. Creation has the power to break vessels and scatter Light.
3. So if God's greatest Desire is to Create, God's greatest yearning is to Complete and bring to Wholeness (because God is, ever and always, ok with inconsistency). God watched that glorious, electric, magnificent display, and decided to Fix it.
4. Now God could not un-Create: what was brought into being, what now Was, could never be Not - not anymore.
5. Just as God breathed in to make a Space for Creation, so now God exhaled, in a great and gentle rush of breath. As with the Light, God's breath danced and leaped and rushed over the All, and those shards, those broken pieces made of Earth and Air and Fire and Water danced with God's breath, and they flowed and shifted through the Everything.
6. But they were not yet repaired.
Chapter 5: In which a Path is Made Clear, and a Purpose made certain
1. Into each piece of Broken that lay shimmering before Her (Him) (God), into that infinite field of possibility, God breathed a Name, a Soul, a Heart.
2. And with that singular, miraculous breath, God declared, into the Was and the Is and the Yet to Be: "What I broke, in My desire to Create, let My creations, in My yearning for wholeness, be charged with its repair."
3. And into that glorious, wondrous swirling cascade, God sang out: "Heal the World." And God knew (because God is smart like that) that it would be Good.
4. And so it is, and so it shall ever be: each of us-- every Heart, every Soul, we each of us have a piece of the Broken that is ours, to find, to heal, to bring together with all the other infinite pieces of Broken. Some infinitely small, some excruciatingly large, waiting to be found, aching to be healed. Yearning, as God yearns, to be made Whole again.
5. And so into this glorious expanse of Broken and Whole, into the endless beauty of Creation, let us say, "Amen."