Subverting the Church: Judaism, Kabbalah and Vatican II

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Subverting the Church: Judaism, Kabbalah and Vatican II

Postprzez Jerzy Ulicki-Rek » Wt gru 05, 2017 1:46 pm

Subverting the Church: Judaism, Kabbalah and Vatican II


Far from claims made by critics of the conciliar Church, the Vatican submitted to modernity and Judaism neither after a council, nor over a century. The Second Vatican Council (1962-65) punctuated a silent, secretive, multi-secular war… The first attempts by Kabbalistic rabbis to turn the Church into an advocate of Judaism, which date back to the Middle Ages, happened by way of their approximation to the high clergy, and even to the cardinals and popes.[i]

Christian Kabbalah: a weapon for subverting the Church

We can trace the origins of Christian Kabbalah back to 13th century Spain, the period during which, and the location where, Kabbalah matured, and where the great Kabbalistic rabbi, Moses Nahmanides, whom I’ve identified as the father of active messianism, was active.[ii]

In Spain during this period, Raymond Martini, a catholic missionary, published Pugio fidei (“the dagger of faith”), a treatise in which he claimed that the Talmudic Aggadah (rabbinic teachings and stories) and the Midrash (biblical exegesis and interpretation) already carried the mark of Christianity.[iii] Gerschom Scholem writes:

Martini lived in Catalonia at the end of the twelfth and well into the thirteenth century, the precise location and period during which a group of kabbalists, led by Nahmanides, began consolidating kabbalist literature (1194-127). Despite Martini’s physical proximity, and the fact that his missionary zeal resulted in a general confiscation of books belonging to Catalonian Jewish communities, he was not aware of the existence of the kabbalah. While kabbalist literature burgeoned before his eyes, Martini failed to notice. Thus, as part of his Christological endeavors, Martini pointed to the ancient Talmudists as the principal authorities of Christianity and credited them with a historical function to which they were as unsuited as were [Pico della Mirandola and] the kabbalists who would later replace them.[iv]
The history of Christian Kabbalah truly begins during Abraham Aboulafia’s lifetime (1240-1291).[v] Aboulafia himself bears testimony to this idea by evoking, in one of his texts, some of his students who converted to Christianity. Indeed, those who had studied in Capua under his direction around 1280 – the same year that Aboulafia tried to meet Pope Nicolas III to obtain his submission[vi] and liberate the Jews from exile in hopes of repatriating them to the Holy Land – converted to Christianity and tried to have kabbalah penetrate through it.

Moreover, Scholem reports that there have been attempts to prove that Aboulafia exercised a certain influence on Arnaud de Villeneuce, a famous Spanish Franciscan doctor who, after learning Hebrew, thought he could use kabbalah to convince Jews of the veracity of the Trinity.[vii] While it is unclear if Arnaud was aware of Aboulafia’s writings, nevertheless Ytzhak Baer (1888-1980), a historian who specializes in the history of Spanish Jews, tells us that Aboulafia lived in Italy for a while, during which he was in contact with Italian Franciscans and Joachimites (a millenarist movement created by Franciscans).[viii]

In 1320, a Jewish man named Abner de Burgos (alias Alphonse Valladolid) converted to Christianity, and in doing so, became the first Jewish-Christian convert to explicitly refer to the kabbalah, which he did by using Aboulafia’s way with combinations of Hebraic letters.[ix]

Pico della Mirandola’s master: the kabbalist who infiltrated the Vatican

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Jerzy Ulicki-Rek
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