Outward ritual cannot destroy ignorance, because they are not mutually contradictory. Realized knowledge alone destroys ignorance.
–Shakara (“father” of the Swami order)
“The paradigm that imagines a God in reality either leads to a philosophy of absolute surrender, total effacement of the human being and life in this world, or—for those not willing to accept that—it leads to atheism. By the way, the atheist, by denying God, is actually partly right—in reality there is no God.
But the Kabbalah inspires a complete paradigm shift. It teaches that Hashem does not exist in reality—Hashem is reality. And we do not exist alongside Hashem, we exist within Hashem, within the reality that is Hashem.
Hashem is the place. Indeed, Hashem is the all-embracing context for everything. So there can’t be you and God standing side by side in reality. There is only one reality that is hashem, and you exist in Hashem.
You exist within reality, embody an aspect of reality, participate in reality. That’s a completely different understanding. All of a sudden, you are no longer a puny insignificant creature existing alongside God, sharing the same place. In light of this perspective, you are not only not puny, not insignificant, not nothing, your existence is intensified because it is a manifestation of the Divine.
Seeing God is all about getting in touch with reality.”
– David Aaron (Seeing God:Ten Life-Changing Lessons of the Kabbalah)
There were several roads nearby, but it did not take her long to find the one paved with yellow bricks. Within a short time she was walking briskly toward the Emerald city, her silver shoes tinkling merrily on the hard, yellow roadbed…The next morning, as soon as the sun was up, they started on their way, and soon she saw a beautiful green glow in the sky just before them. “That must be the Emerald City” said Dorothy
–L. Frank Baum
The only honor that a man can pay his Creator is to seek Him
–Swami Sri Yukteswar Giri