Ask A Kabbalist

Finding Light in the Darkest Times


I have read The Power of Kabbalah and I enjoyed it very much. To me it makes total sense. However, while the principles described in the book can be applied to the ordinary, normal life (where your biggest issue might be not finding a job or even losing someone you love to death), I live in Iraq. In my country, if you die of natural causes or illness you are LUCKY! Here, where death and sadness have taken root, I find it very difficult to be positive all the time. It is even more challenging to be proactive. Proactive behavior here means death. I mean, if I see injustice taking place before my eyes (by injustice here I mean someone being killed, tortured, or robbed), Kabbalah, I believe, advises me to try and help, but I cannot because simply, I cannot. Failing to help always makes me even more depressed. Therefore, being proactive results in nothing but more depression. How can one find the Light in such an unordinary environment? ~NA


Kabbalah teaches that each individual will find himself or herself exactly at the right place and at the right time in moments where he or she needs to go through a test. A test in Hebrew is nisayon. The first two letters read out nes, which means miracle. Blessings and miracles always come in disguise. Whether you are born or live in Iraq, England, or Chile, if you need to be tested you can run, but you cannot hide from that test.

It is true that certain environments are more precarious and difficult than others, such as Iraq, Syria, or other places in the world where human trafficking, sexual abuse, and lack of human rights are dominant. As you said, the ability to see the Light amidst all of the darkness is made more difficult, if not humanly impossible by these things. But we must hang on to the belief that the Light is present and can come to our help as soon as we ask for it in our heart and soul.

Applying the tools of Kabbalah, such as the proactive formula, restriction, using the 72 Names, and scanning the Zohar can help us enhance that presence and connection to the Light. If circumstances don’t allow you to help, pray and meditate for all people in need or suffering. Pray for them to find the Light in the midst of darkness.

There are incredible stories of people surviving genocide or 40 years as political prisoner. One might expect them to become bitter, full of blame, and feeling like a victim. Instead, they have become a voice for their nation, an inspiration for their people.

Today, choose to see the Light, even if it’s only a little spark in the darkness. Darkness is dominant only when we don’t make a little room for the Light. Wishing you all the best. May you and all the people in Iraq find peace. Have hope that all will reach true and lasting fulfillment.


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