December 28, 2006
Kabbalah boom prompts meeting of mystical minds
(Page 2 - Previous Page)"Not only do we now have permission to reveal the great secrets," Berg said, "but we are standing on the threshold of a new spiritual era, and only the wide dissemination of the Zohar, through the writing of many books and the opening of many centers of study, will be able to end global pain, suffering and even death."
Although the centre already has more than 50 branches worldwide, a children's education program called "Spirituality for Kids" and a sizeable charity foundation, Berg said they feel their work has only just begun.
Another powerful Ashlagian force, Rav Michael Laitman of Bnei Baruch, wasn't able to attend, although two of his students came to distribute free copies of his book, "From Chaos to Harmony: The Solution to the Global Crisis According to Kabbalah." Laitman sees the world in terms of Kabbalists and non-Kabbalists and is also on a mission to bring not only personal transformation but global redemption through Kabbalah.
The logo of Tiferet Institute is the "seed of life." Although there were still more questions than answers by the end of the forum, some seeds of understanding had been planted in the most fertile soil.
"I always had a negative impression of the Kabbalah Centre," Frankiel said, "but I don't feel that way anymore.... The problem is, we all have ideas that we believe passionately in, and it becomes very important to prove we're right and the other wrong...."
At the end of the conference, people filtered outside for the lighting of a six-foot-high menorah. "Although I've hardly eaten all day, I feel as if I've come away from a really satisfying meal," said Ariella Shira of Covina.
The lights in San Diego Bay quivered, and it took a few tries for the menorah candles to catch. As a military plane flew overhead, Rabbi Moshe Halfon played his guitar, and the group sang the perennial Chanukah song, "Maoz Tzur" -- "Rock of Ages."
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