Powers of the Soul

Basics in Kabbalah: Emet

The Powers of the Soul to Experience God


Emet is the spiritual state associated with the sefirah of yesod.

In the words of our sages, "the seal of God is truth." The final letters of the three words that conclude the account of Creation–baraElokim la'asot ("God created to do" [Genesis 2:3])–spell emet. God created reality "to do," which as interpreted by the sages means that it is incumbent upon us, God's creatures, to complete the "doing" (i.e. "rectification") of His Creation.

Here, emet, whose three letters are referred to as the beginning, middle and end of the alef-beit, means the actual "verification" ("end" or "seal") and "realization" of God's primordial will (the "beginning") in Creation. (Emet in its intellectual sense, represents God's plan for reality which follows His will and precedes His seal, and thus corresponds to the "middle" stage of emet).

As a spiritual emotion of the soul, emet is thus understood to be the experience of the soul's almost impulsive "drive," at the end of a creative pursuit, to "make it come true." Emet thus entails the experience of self fulfillment in all of one's life endeavors.

The tzadik ("foundation of the universe," referred to as the "tzadik emet") is the one granted the power to "decree" that God realize and fulfill in actuality all of His good promises to Israel. It is the inner potential of each and every Jew to become such a tzadik emet.

Thus emet is the power to realize one's own deepest potential, which is in fact the power of the Jewish soul to bring about the ultimate realization of God's potential.

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