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Letters of C. G. Jung: Volume 2, 1951-1961

To James Kirsch

Dear Kirsch, 18 November 1952

I am sending you an English letter this time as I am still unable to write longhand letters myself.

I had another attack of arrhythmia and tachycardia due to overwork.

I am now slowly recovering and my pulse is normal again for almost a week, but I am still tired and have to go slowly.

Your question is a very important one and I think I can understand its full import.

I would not be able to give you a satisfactory answer, yet having studied the question as far as is possible, I can call your attention to the extraordinary development in the Kabbalah.

I am rather certain that the sefiroth tree contains the whole symbolism of Jewish development parallel to the Christian idea.

The characteristic difference is that God’s incarnation is understood to be a historical fact in the Christian belief, while in the Jewish Gnosis it is an entirely pleromatic process symbolized by the concentration of the supreme triad of Kether, Hokhmah, and Binah in the figure of Tifereth.

Being the equivalent of the Son and the Holy Ghost, he is the sponsus bringing about the great solution through his union with Malkhuth.

This union is equivalent to the assumptio beatae virginis, but definitely more comprehensive than the latter as it seems to include even the extraneous world of the Kelipoth.

X. is certainly all wet when he thinks that the Jewish Gnosis contains nothing of the Christian mystery. It contains practically the whole of it, but in its unrevealed pleromatic state.

There is a very interesting little Latin mediaeval book written either by Knorr von Rosenroth or at least under his direct influence.

It is called Adumbratio Kabbalae Christianae, Id est Syncatabasis Hebraizans, Sive Brevis Applicatio Doctrinae Hebraeorum
Cabbalisticae Ad Dogmata Novi Foederis. Francofurti, 1684.

This little book is highly worthwhile; it contains a very useful parallel to the Christian and the Kabbalistic mystery and might give you much help as it has helped me in understanding this all-important problem of the Jewish religious development.

It would be highly commendable to translate the book.

I am pretty certain that the extraordinary and venomous response of the orthodox rabbis against the Kabbalah is based upon the undeniable fact of this most remarkable Judeo-Christian parallelism.

This is hot stuff, and since the 17th century, as far as my knowledge goes, nobody has dared to touch it, but we are interested in the soul of man and therefore we are not blindfolded by foolish confessional prejudices.

Sincerely yours,

C.G. Jung ~Carl Jung, Letters Vol. II, Pages 91-93.