This thesis would be given the glowing imprimatur of Frances Yates in her classic Occult Philosophy in the Elizabethan Age: "surely the influence of the Friar of Venice lies behind this scene, the influence of the famous Christian Cabalist
." (44) Now it is of course possible that Shakespeare read an esoteric work written in Latin and published in Venice in 1525.
It is the personal account and practical guidebook of Moses Basola (1480-1560), Italian rabbi, teacher, private tutor, distinguished head of the Ancona Yeshiva, cabalist
, and sometime banker, who recorded his pilgrimage to Eretz Yisrael beginning in 1521.
The reading is the crucial act and the Cabalist
remains boundlessly acquiescent in silence.
When, frightened by the Thirty Years' War in the seventeenth century, Johann Valentin Andreae, Tommaso Campanella and Guillaume Postel all took time off from looking for a perfect language to draw up projects for an ideal republic to insure the universal peace, maybe their behavior had more to recommend it than, say, the characteristic paralysis of our own literary vanguard--those ecstatic cabalists
who have assured us there's no such thing as causality, history, rational planning, coherent representation, intelligent action or ethical purpose, only showbiz--just as the artists of Them (or Lascaux, or Altamira) could teach Picasso something about jouissance.
For Demetz, Prague is not so much "magic Prague," the city of Cabalists
, Lurianic mystics, and the ubiquitous Golem, but instead a city of rationalists.
A true total text would have to be the product of what to the modern mind is an almost unimaginable metaphysical situation: something akin to the Bible of the Cabalists
, whose omniscient author has encrypted not only every word, but every letter of every word--and the order of every letter of every word, and so on--with a universe of meanings.
The multiplicity and diversity of post-Babelian languages is brought back to a point of unity in and through pure letters in what is itself a translation of a translation and a symbolon of a symbolon -- a version of those immemorial letters which, cabalists
tell us, are themselves only a metaphor for the derivation of all the diversity of finite living entities from the same, unknowable infinite and infinitesimal point.
Rosicrucians regard themselves as direct descendants of Christian Cabalists
infused with Pythagorean doctrine and directly influenced by Paracelsus.
Elements of theosophical thought were embraced by the Cabalists
(see cabala ) and the Gnostics, although modern theosophy is largely based on the writings of Jakob Bohme.
In a brilliant, exhaustive, and groundbreaking study, Booth, who is publishing director at Century and has taught philosophy and theology at Oriel College, Oxford, gathers the insights of so-called secret societies such as the Freemansons, the Rosicrucians, the Knights Templars, the alchemists, and the Cabalists
into the mysteries surrounding the creation of the world and humanity, the forces of good and evil, and the end of time.
2) its name, `Aleph', is the first Hebrew letter which, according to the cabalists
, represents infinitude;
, Jewish and Christian, have had the Book of Splendor to ponder since the 13th century, and the truly wise among them have said that it is a work of such wisdom that nothing can be understood of it at all.