Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Union with God

In my previous post I mentioned some ideas on union with God that I found a while ago in Lawrence Kushner's book God Was in This Place & I, i Did Not Know. I went back and re-read this section in Kushner's book. It's very good stuff.

The rabbi he references is Kabbalah expert Moshe Idel and the Hebrew term Idel uses to describe the mystical union is devekut. He gives three types of union: cognitive devekut, devekut of behavior and devekut of prayer. Kushner summarizes this way:
We don't want just to read about what God wants. We don't want someone else telling us what God wants either. We don't even want God telling us what God wants. We want our eyes to be God's eyes so we can see the world the way God sees it. We want our teaching to be God's Torah. We want our hands to do God's work. We want our prayers to be God's prayers. We want what God wants. Devekut: being one with God. At last the "little i, Anochi," and the "Great I, Anochi, of All creation" are one.
That's not too much to ask, is it?

It reminded me of what St. Augustine said of his conversion experience: "This was the sum of it: not to will what I willed and to will what you willed." (Confessions, Book 9, Chapter 1)

No comments: