“The heart has wisdom the head knows not.”

The above statement is one I heard repeatedly at the start of my spiritual healing. We intellectuals don’t tend to put much stock in emotional intelligence and rely on logic to make our decisions for us. While this can be very useful practice I can now, albeit somewhat begrudgingly, admit that I actually exhibited little to no control over my emotions in those early stages. God bless the patience of my spiritual director. All these years later as heart and head have come into a more balanced relationship I can actually look back and laugh at the man-child I was. Oh! Such lovely rhetoric to justify why the emotional capacity of a teaspoon wasn’t actually a problem at all.

“Where’s your sense of adventure?” they’d say.

“Not exploring the depth of my emotional pain.” Take that Captain Ahab.

Sure. It’s funny to reflect on now but at the time I brushed over every gem of wisdom emotions had to offer. I ran from pain by suppressing it and pretending it didn’t exist. I’d even throw around all the cliché quotes we use like “the only way out is in” to others. I’d offer sound advice on how it’s done too but I wasn’t willing to take those steps myself.

I, who found Sophia in his heart was still mortified by the thought of really diving into the depths of my own emotions. Sometimes I still won’t gaze into them in those instances when something triggers the absolute darkest moments.

That’s actually what I want to talk about. When something triggers… In the last post on A Personal Path to Peace I had mentioned the 32 paths of Wisdom found in the Sefer Yetzirah. What most modern students do with that information is play with the mathematics-

32 is the fifth power of two. The 10 sephirot define a 5 dimensional space. The 32 paths corresponds to the number of apexes on a 5-dimensional hypercube.

-Of course, all of that is good fun and shows how relevant the scriptural account actually is scientifically. We can see that the Creationists who take a literal translation from Genesis have completely ignored what the mystics have been saying for a couple millennia. The mystics, on the other hand, extrapolate all this philosophical meaning from the Tree of Life and give us some really really good insights.

What if I told you there is more to it all than mere philosophy?

What if I said that the Tree Of Life itself also serves as a model for, not only our bodies but, how they connect to God as well?

Kabbalists site that the 32 paths of Wisdom have their parallels in the human nervous system. 31 paths then parallel the 31 pairs of nerves that emanate from the spinal chord: 8 cervical, 12 thoracic, 5 lumbar, 5 sacral, and 1 coccygeal. Now here’s where it get’s philosophical again. The 32nd and highest path corresponds to the entire complex of cranial nerves. Which are 12 in number- think 12 zodiacs, 12 disciples, 12 disciplines. As above so below, as within so without. Yadda! Yadda!

Anyways, the nervous system serves a double purpose. First It transmits messages from the brain to every part of the body allowing the brain to control all the limbs and organs. Secondly, the nervous system transmits information from the various senses to the brain. Now, four of the senses- sight hearing taste and smell- come directly through the cranial nerves which are entirely in the brain. The impulses that come from the lower 31 nerves deal primarily with the sense of touch and feeling.

Like the nerves each of the 32 paths of wisdom is a two way street. First, It is a channel through which the Mind- the infinite Ein Soph- exerts control over creation. Secondly, it is also the path through which man can reach the Mind. As the Universe, so the Soul! If one wants to attain a mystical experience and approach the Mind they must travel along the 32 paths.

Okay! That’s great but what does this have to do with the Heart?

In Hebrew the number 32 is written Lamed Bet. This spells Lev(לב). The Hebrew word for HEART. It is in the heart that the action of the Mind is manifested in the body. As soon as the influence of the Mind ceases the heart ceases to function. Medically speaking, that’s what we call death. The heart also provides life force to the brain and nervous system. When the heart stops pumping the nervous system can no longer function and the Mind no longer exerts influence on the body. The heart therefore serves as the causal link between Mind and Body. It’s for this reason that the Sefer Yetzirah calls the heart the King over the Soul.

This is why the mystical experience is sometimes referred to as the running of the heart.

So when we say the Wisdom of the Heart is vital, it is because it is literally the source of the vital life force within our being. Sure, our minds may share consciousness with each other and the Cosmos but we will eternally manifest what we feel we deserve.


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