The 4 Quadrants

Kabbalah refers to the existence of 4 Worlds or Quadrants of experience, relating to the body (physical), heart (emotional), mind (intellectual) and soul (spiritual).

Since the goal of Kabbalah is integration, not separation, an ideal life is one whereby these 4 distinct, but interrelated aspects of our life, are in balance.

However, as you will notice from the diagram (below), though all are necessary for balance, all are not necessarily of equal weighting. Each successive layer, beginning with the physical, is encased by the next, concluding with the spiritual.

 

Atzilut (Soul): The Spiritually Quadrant: 

This relates to your overall vision and is the 1st and highest level

What are your living for? What principles do you stand for and what are your values? Does your life have meaning and a sense or purpose or are you lacking direction, drifting aimlessly?

Atzilut is the moment of choice. It is the proper integration of the 10 Principles and living a life of vitality and purpose.

It is the difference between our 'Nefesh Elokit' (conscience) and our 'Nefesh Behamit' (ego) or as Stephen R. Covey says, in his book 'The 8th Habit', it's whether you decide to follow the path of a Gandhi or a Hitler.

Of course, for most of us we know that life isn't so extreme, but it is a question of the gradient. Is our moral compass pointing us towards the path of selflessness or selfishness? The answer is either via the voice of conscience or via the voice of ego.

 Briyah (Mind): The Intellectual Quadrant: 

 This relates to your creative capacities and is the 2nd level

What are your natural talents? What are your unique qualities and virtues? Are you more  intuitive or rational? Are you more a lateral thinker or do you prefer the traditional  linear approach to problem solving? Do you prefer more creative endeavours, such as the arts, music, swimming, gardening etc. or, perhaps, are more scientifically inclined and  favour  more intellectual pursuits, such as reading, chess playing, or even writing blogs?

Yetzirah (Heart): The Emotional Quadrant:

 This relates to your emotional health and is the 3rd level

What are your innate temperaments? What excites and motivates you? Where do your passions lie? Are you by nature introverted or more of an extrovert? Are you generally confrontational, unafraid to speak your mind, or do you seek to avoid conflict at all costs? Are you comfortable taking risks or, perhaps, more risk averse? Are you more spontaneous by nature or more inclined towards routine? And when the inevitable setbacks occur, do you tend to bounce back quickly and move forward stridently, or do you prefer to retreat into your shell, i.e. once bitten twice shy?

Assiyah (Body): The Physical Quadrant:

This relates to your physical contribution is the 4th level

  We all have a unique and irreplaceable role to play in the world - what's yours? The answer lies in a) Taking  into account your collective life experiences - i.e. your given circumstances, the events you have faced, the situations you have confronted, and the people you have encountered - friends, acquaintances and even strangers - in what way can you make a tangible difference? b) What are your underlying fears and destructive self-beliefs? Poverty? Insignificance? Failure? Uncovering and confronting these is central to discovering your life purpose.

Combined, these 4 Quadrants are the keys to finding your personal 'tikkun', i.e. process of rectification, and ultimate life mission.

 

Synergy: Integration of Body, Heart, Mind and Soul

This that feeling when everything just kicks right into place.

  • It is when you have clarity of vision, purpose and meaning driven by the voice of conscience (Spirit).
  • It is when you can give voice to your unique talents, qualities and virtues (Intellect).
  • It is when you are aware of your natural temperaments and know where your passions lie (Emotion).
  • It is when you incorporate your collective life experiences and address your inner fears to make your unique contribution to the world (Physical).