"Regarding the degenerated forms of asceticism, I would like to point out the spirit of a phenomenon that is more properly connected to the plane of "work" (that is, of the fourth caste). The modem world knows a sublimated version of work in which the latter becomes "disinterested," disjoined from the economic factor and from the idea of a practical or productive goal and takes an almost ascetic form; I am talking about sport. Sport is a way of working in which the productive objective no longer matters; thus, sport is willed for its own sake as mere activity. Someone has rightly pointed out that sport is the "blue collar" religion.
Sport is a typical counterfeit of action in the traditional sense of the word. A pointless activity, it is nevertheless still characterized by the same triviality of work and belongs to the same physical and lightless group of activities that are pursued at the various crossroads in which plebeian contamination occurs. Although through the practice of sport it is possible to achieve a temporary evocation of deep forces, what this amounts to is the enjoyment of sensations and a sense of vertigo and at most, the excitement derived from directing one's energies and winning a competition without any higher and transfiguring reference, any sense of "sacrifice" or deindividualizing offering being present. Physical individuality is cherished and strengthened by sport; thus the chain is confirmed and every residue of subtler sensibility is suffocated. The human being, instead of growing into an organic being, tends to be reduced to a bundle of reflexes, and almost to a mechanism.
It is also very significant that the lower strata of society are the ones that show more enthusiasm for sports, displaying their enthusiasm in great collective forms. Sport may be identified as one of the forewarning signs of that type of society represented by Chigalev in Dostoyevsky's The Obsessed, after the required time has elapsed for a methodical and reasoned education aimed at extirpating the evil represented by the "I" and by free will, and no longer realizing they are slaves, all the Chigalevs will return to experience the innocence and the happiness of a new Eden. This "Eden" differs from the biblical one only because work will be the dominating universal law. Work as sport and sport as work in a world that has lost the sense of historical cycles, as well as the sense of true personality, would probably be the best way to implement such a messianic ideal. Thus, it is not a coincidence that in several societies, whether spontaneously or thanks to the state, great sports organizations have arisen as the appendices of various classes of workers, and vice versa."
"The primary human conception of God is then" the Passive state of Negative Existence AIN-not active; from this the mind of man"passes to conceive of AIN SUPH, of God as the Boundless, the Unlimited, Undifferentiated, Illimitable One; and the third stage is AIN SUPH AUR-Boundless Light, Universal Light-" Let there be Light" was formulated, and "There was Light." The Passive has put on Activity: the Conscious God has a'waked.
Let us now endeavour to conceive of the concentration of this effulgence, let us formulate a gathering together of the rays of this illumination into a Crown of glorified radiance, and we recognise KTR, Kether, the Crown, the First Sephira, First Emanation of Incomprehensible Deity, the first conceivable attribute of immanent manifested God- head: also named ADM OILAH, Adam Oilah, The Heavenly Man, and Autik Yomin, The Ancient of days. The devout Rabbi bows his head and adores the sublime"conception. He is represented in the Hebrew Old Testament by the Divine Name AHIH, Aheieh, " I am " (Exodus iii. v. 4).
The conscious God having arisen in His energy there follo\v immediately hvo further Emanations, the "Trio shining in the symbol of a radiant triangle. CHKMH, Chokmah, "Visdom, The King, with the Divine Name IH, Jah is the Second Sephira; BINH, Binah, Understanding, The Queen, and the Divine Narne IHVH Jehovah is the Third Sephira, - the "Supernal Triad" is demonstrated. Then follow GDULH, Gedulah, also called CHSD, Chesed, MIercy, with the Divine Narne AL, El; and its contrast GBURH, Geburah, Severity, also called Pachad, Fear, with the Divine Name ALH, Eloah; and the reflected triangle is completed by the Sixth Sephira, the Sun, named TPART, Tiphareth, or Beauty, vlith the name ALHIM Elohim; considered as a triangle of reflection with the apex below. The third triangle may be con- sidered as a second reflection with the apex below;
it is formed of the seventh, eighth, and ninth Sephiroth; NTzCH, Netzach, Firmness or ·Victory, \vith the name Jehovah Sabaoth; HUD, Hod or Hud, Splendour, with the name Elohim Sabaoth; and ISUD, Yesod, Foundation, with the name AL CHAI, El Chai.
Finally, all these ideals are resumed in a single form, the Tenth Sephira, MLKUT, Malkuth, the Shekinah, the Kingdom, also sometimes called Tzedek, Righteousness. The whole Decad form "Adam Kadmon," "The Archetypal Man," and the wondrous OTz CHIIM, "Tree of Life." In the ancient figures of Adam Kadmon we see Kether, the Crown, over the forehead; Chokmah and Binah are the two halves of the thinking brain; Gedulah and Geburah are the organs of action, the right and left upper limbs; Tipbareth is the heart and the vital organs of the chest; Netzach and Hud are the lower limbs right and left; Jesod refers to the digestive and reproductive organs and abdomen; and lastly Malkuth is compared to - the feet as a basis or foundation of man upon this earth or lowest plane: see the plate of The Adam Kadmon, Archetypal Man, or The First Adam.
These Triads were looked upon as formed of a Principle of Union and a male and female potency, and thus a Balance, MTQLA, Mlethequela, exists.
The Kabalah demonstrates the grouping of the Ten Sephiroth into Three Pillars; the Pillar of Mercy, the Pillar of Severity, and the Pillar of Mildness between them: these may also be associated with the Three Mother Letters, A, M, Sa; Aleph, Mem and Shin. Then again by two horizontal lines we may form three groups and con- sider these Sephiroth to become' types of the Three divisions of Man's Nature, the Intellectual, Moral, and Sensuous (neglecting Malkuth, the material body), thus connecting the Kabalah with Mental and M:Dral Philosophy and Ethics.
Frequently quoted Kabalistic words are: Arikh Anpin, 1-fakroprosopos, the Vast Countenance v,'hich is a title of Kether the Crown, Deity Supreme; the Lesser Countenance is the Central Sun, Tiphereth, a conception that has something in common with that of the Christian Christ, the Son of God. (The former was represented by a face in profile, the latter by the full face. M. Mathers).
Binah is the Supernal Mother, Aima. Malkuth is the Inferior Mother, the Bride of the Mikroprosopos. Daath or Knowledge is the union of Chokmah and Binah, of 'wisdom and under- standing. Merkabah was the Chariot Throne of God of the vision of Ezekiel; it rested on wheels and was carried by Four Cherubim, the Sacred Animal Forms, 'which resembled the Man, Lion, Bull and Eagle, which were related to the Four quarters of the World, and to Four types of humanity.
The Four Letters Yod, He, Vau, He, or as we say IHVH, of the name 'we call Jehovah, are allotted and distributed by the Kabalistic doctrine among the Sephiroth in a peculiar manner, forming the mysterious conception of the Tetragrammaton, that awful name of Divine Majesty which might never be uttered by the common people, and whose true pronunciation has been for many centuries confessedly lost to the 1ews and has never been known to the Christians.
The Supreme Boundless God, the "Ain Suph" was not the direct Creator of the World, nor was the world made out of nothing.
The highest Trinity of "The Crown, King and Queen" having arisen by Divine Emanation, its powers descended and expanded into the Seven Lower Sephiroth, and produced the Universe in their own image, a decad of forces, as a wh~le constituting the ADM QDMUN Adam Quadmun, or Adam Kadmon, the Primordial or Archetypal Man; the world produced is the existing Universe of which we have cognizance. The universe is called the "Garment of God": this lower world is a copy of the Divine world, everything here has its prototype above.
Man was the final Word of Creation, he was a resume of all-forms, and so transcended the angels in his faculties.
The Sephirotic Crown was First, then came Chokmah, a masculine Potency, and then Binah, a feminine one; from their union arose the created universe of angels, men and earth: but 'as above so below,' so we have in Genesis a Man formed, then succeeds a Woman, a.nd from them all others. The Kabalah then teaches that the Egos have come out from the Spirit Fountain, suffer incarnation again and again until experience and perfection have been attained, and ultimately rejoin the Divine Source.
The several Kabalistic treatises give several groupings, which are all relevant one to the other, the most usual one being a triple division, into Nephesh, the passions referred to Malkuth; Ruach, the Mind, Reason, and Intellect referred to the group of Six Sephiroth lying around the Sun of Tiphereth; and Neshamah, the spiritual aspirations associated with the Supernal Triangle of the Queen, King and Crown." [Westcott, An introduction to the study of Kabbala]
As you can see, in Kabbala, the directive goes from the Transcendental Godhead ---> Heart/Beauty ---> Foundation of the earth, life, etc.
In the Chakra system,, the directive goes from foundation of the earth at the spinal store of all your genetic potential called the Kundalini energy ---> Heart ---> blossoming open the Head-crown...
These are inverse systems of revelation.
In Kabbala, it is the beauty/heart/perfection derived from godhead that sets the foundation of earth, and life in it. In Yoga, it is the imperfect striving of energy from base regions to flower into a perfection of vision and state of godhood.
In the former, godhood is an assumed premise,,, in the latter, an ideal one strives to attain.
In the former, godhood is the great mystery,,, in the latter, man, the earth and life here is the great mystery.
In the former, it is the descent of god into man,,, in the latter, it is the ascent of man to god.
"Anybody who has practiced climbing may remember what a strange influx of new strength has sometimes occurred when, after feeling literally worn out by a storm and having almost reached a point of giving up, all of a sudden the place of and the way to safety are recognized; or when, after hours spent on the mountain face, feeling exhausted and uncertain about the way out, one finally sees the much yearned for peak.
Psychology has given a name to this phenomenon: it is called the "second wind" (W. James). In this way we must recognize that, aside from the vital force, which is usually at work in the limbs and organs related to them, there is a deeper and greater reservoir that manifests itself only in exceptional circumstances, almost always under the influence of a psychological or emotional factor. Thus, the task consists of finding a method through which to tap into this hidden source of energy, the essence of which is, however, experienced instinctively, causally, and emotionally.
The first way to achieve such a goal is rather intuitive. First of all it is necessary to empty one's self and to be willing to exhaust, as quickly as possible, the amount of energy available to the body, until a critical level of exhaustion is reached. Then, what occurs is the phenomenon of the second wind, in which the vital energies in reserve are forced to emerge. Since they are not connected to the physical body, they are not limited' they can do much more than physical energies. Thus, one enters into a new rhythm and state of tirelessness.
And so, for all practical purposes, one can overthrow the habitual conduct among climbers of trying to avoid exhaustion by proceeding at a slow pace, by becoming fatigued as soon as possible, tackling the ascent offensively.
The secret lies for the most part in the breath. It is necessary to get used to feeling one's breath, to immediately take control of it from the very first step, without ever letting go of it. Second, it is necessary to connect the rhythm of breathing to the pace of walking, without ever brewing this connection…
The point is to activate a psychic force because the pace must be increased and yet that connection with breath must also be maintained. Thus, what occurs after a short time is a condition of weariness that would induce most people to break the connection in order to breath more frequently or even to stop and to catch one's breath. Once a certain limit is reached, an inner act is required in order to go farther. Then what sets in is a new state in which walking and breathing form a natural unity no longer requiring one's supervision; there is no more tiredness and the initial speed of the assault is not only maintained effortlessly, almost by some mysterious inner push, but it is even increase despite steep inclines.
When this phenomenon is actively assumed and actualized, mountain sickness is replaced by a sense of lightness, by lack of tiredness, and almost by an intoxication that does not dull the senses but which bestows lucidity, a sense of impulse to action, which is the same that, in psychic training, always accompanies in a particularly lively and characteristic way every ascent, almost erasing the perception of time.
Those who, in every physical ascent, experience a little the sense of an inner elevation; those whho look at every icy height almost as the symbol of an intangible culmination; those who really grasp the message of the vast spaces, where there are only heaven and pure, free forces - they will most likely experience themselves not as body, but rather as life; they are likely to transform their lives with a creative vital tension so much as to achieve the results of the technique I describe.
In contrast, those who do not ascend as if they were carried by the body as if by a well-trained beast of burden are guarding the body's life forces. They are directly and consciously supporting the body with its inner energy, and thereby exalting it, energizing it, and bringing it forward in a manner that does not need to struggle against the flesh's weariness and weight. They are the most likely to intimately perceive the ritual meaning of an ascent, that living meaning of purification and liberation, whereby the ancient world (from the Greek Mount Olympus to the Hindu Mount Meru) saw in the great heights the symbolic dwelling of superhuman entities: what I have described in this is one aspect of what the ancients may have experienced as sacred on a mountain." [Meditation on the Peaks]
On the one direction, as discipline of the body grows into more systemic martial arts, the other trend is 'body development' through abandoning all rules, and discipline, and just play - Tarzanism/Parkour/'Roughhousing'…