What is the course about?
From its roots in Jewish mysticism, kabbalah has spread through Western culture, attracting everyone from magicians to alchemists to Madonna. We’ll explore the allure of kabbalah as we discuss its essential history, themes, and symbols.
What will we cover?
o The history of kabbalah: its origins in medieval Spain, its spread in both Jewish and Christian communities in Europe, its adoption by the Western magical tradition, and its contemporary manifestations in alternative religious groups like the Kabbalah Centre.
o The central practices and beliefs of Kabbalah, including meditation, prayer, cosmic balance, divine gender relationships, and mystical union with the divine.
o The most important symbols of Kabbalah, including the Tree of Life and Shekinah, the feminine aspect of God.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
o Describe a number of central practices, symbols and concepts in kabbalah.
o Identify some of the main religious groups interested in kabbalah.
o Explain why kabbalah has proved attractive to contemporary alternative religious movements.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
This is an introductory course, so no prior knowledge is required.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
This course will alternate between lecture sessions, group discussion, and interaction with short texts, images, and videos. No work outside of class will be required.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
There are no other costs, but please bring an open mind, respect for opinions different than your own, and paper and pen.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
General information and advice on courses at Build is available from the Student Centre and Library on Monday to Friday from 12:00 – 19:00.
See the course guide for term dates and further details