Origin of the Kabala
Used by the Order of Melchizedek
Not long after the founding of the Order in 1969 I followed a deeply-felt need to get away from the city and moved into a cabin I built in the woods. For reasons that were not entirely clear to me at the time, I was obsessed with trying to formulate a way to graphically relate the numbers 1, 3 and 7. I tried every arrangement I could think of but there seemed no satisfactory solution.
One day as I was returning from working in my garden I felt an urgent need to lie down and barely made it back to the cabin before I was whisked out of my body into a visionary experience unlike anything I could have imagined. I saw hordes of angels streaming down from the heavens and arranging themselves in a geometric pattern around me.
While there seemed to be thousands of angelic beings present, they were arranged in clusters so that I could see that there were three large groups arranged in a triangle around and below me. Farther away were seven groups of angels arrayed beneath the three. These comprised the points of what would become the kabalistic structure. Other angels were flying between these groups, following paths that would become the paths linking the various points. It was a most spectacular sight and the relationships were etched in my memory.
As soon as the experience ended I attempted to put down on paper everything I could recall of what I had seen. Most importantly I began to construct the first model of the kabala.
I must take a moment to comment on our use of the term "kabala." Most people when they see it are going to think of Jewish Cabala -- also spelled cabbala, cabbalah, kabballa, qabala, etc. In my dictionary (Webster's Seventh Collegiate) that is the first definition. The second definition is "a traditional, esoteric, occult, or secret matter; esoteric doctrine or mysterious art." Our use of kabala derives from that collection of definitions, though I personally think that what I was shown also has some relationship to Jewish cabala.
In the months that followed I spent many hours meditating about the structure, mostly within the structure as what I had constructed was about eight feet tall so I could comfortably sit inside it to meditate.
It was during this time that I began to appreciate that what I had been given was a universal system for organizing information sets. Over the years we have been primarily concerned with applying this sytem to various kinds of esoteric and spiritual systems. But it is also the case that it seems to be relevant to the organization of the basic building blocks of matter that physicists have named quarks.
The most intense work with the structure came during the years the members were living in a monastic environment in Seattle. The entire group meditated each morning on aspects of the kabala. It was an extensive period of combining chanting with the meditation that allowed us to ascertain which sounds correlated with the points and paths of the structure. This was of major importance in enabling us to incorporate the kabala into our ritual.
Other meditations confirmed the names of the points and paths, which then became the basis for the religious calendar used by the Order. That calendar has undergone some modification over the years, but remains based on kabala.
We spent considerable time becoming acquainted with the archangels that were associated with each point of the kabala, which required us to greatly expand our understanding of the angelic kingdom. Once complete that added yet another dimension to what was available for ritual use.
In the years since our time living together work has continued in expanding our understanding of this structure. For example, while I was living in Hawaii I became interested in Buddhism and discovered that the list of Buddhas could be correlated to the kabala! And the I Ching is easily correlated. It was very gratifying to me to know that the structure didn't apply only to western systems of thought. A friend who has worked with the structure extensively was inspired to develop a complex kabalastic chant designed to help heal the planet. This chant has now become a staple in the way we observe the solstices and equinoxes.
I feel certain that as the Priesthood moves into a more active stance of teaching that much more will be revealed about this structure and its many applications to our spiritual work.