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Is my relationship with God personal? While I don't think God is a person, is this God’s ‘Presence' a personal presence? Something warm, someone we can talk to? Someone who listens? Or is God a mechanical, impersonal force/being? Is it accurate to call or think of God as "My Father?" Thank you. ~MM
What a powerful question. I am sure many people who study Kabbalah and also come from any sort of traditional background can become confused about this concept.
In Kabbalah, the words we use have very specific meanings. Often, these meanings are somewhat different than in traditional terms. The word “God” is one of these terms. In the original Hebrew language of the Bible, there are ten different words for “God,” because each word represents a different form of spiritual energy. These details are beyond the scope of this question. So, let’s narrow our discussion to your question specifically.
“God” is the Endless Light, and “Creator” is the source of the Light, which is something well beyond our conscious grasp. It’s already a lot to truly grasp the idea of Infinite Endless Light.
Now, each of us was created with a soul 100% full of Light. Therefore, each of us DOES have a personal relationship with God. The Light within us consists of unique talents and abilities meant to help us complete our spiritual work. Our spiritual work in this world is NOT to receive the Light (because we are already full), but to reveal our Light through sharing acts of proactive transformation. As we learn through studying Kabbalah, the revelation of our soul’s Light will give us a greater sense of true and lasting fulfillment. Therefore, our talents, abilities, and resources are necessary to complete our individual correction (tikun) and the collective correction (tikun).
Therefore, while God is not a being as we understand “being,” the Light is an intelligent, conscious energy force. And that Light, which is the source of ALL lasting fulfillment, shines 24/7. So, there is NO place where the Infinite Light doesn’t exist. The reason people don’t experience it 100% is because through our own actions we can create a curtain that separates us from the Light.
When a person “speaks” to God in those terms, it is really opening one’s consciousness to receive inspiration from the Light, to have clarity about a situation in life. As we open our hearts and minds to receive this Light, there will be a sense of “warmth” because the Light within us is being activated.
The term “Father” also has a specific meaning in Kabbalah. It represents the level of Light called Chochmah on the Tree of Life, which is also called aba, “father.” From this point of view we can all call God our “Father” because all of us are created “in the image and likeness of God.” This also reflects the unity and oneness of people; we are all perfect beings of Light in the “eyes of God,” with no distinctions between us.
Bottom line, we all have a personal, warm, loving, and open-hearted relationship with God, the intelligent Light force that is our source of existence, inspiration, motivation, and love for all human beings. As Rav Berg and Karen teach as the goal of the Kabbalah Centre – Love your neighbor as yourself, human dignity to all, and peace.
Much Light and blessings,