An Introduction to the Four Degrees of Kabbalah
An experienced Christian pastor and author based in Port Jefferson Station, New York, Sheila R. Vitale is the founder of Living Epistles Ministries and Christ-Centered Kabbalah. In leading these teaching ministries, Sheila Vitale integrates the lessons of the Bible with Lurian Kabbalah concepts to offer new spiritual insights to individuals around the world.
In a recent open letter to her students, Pastor Vitale clarified the distinctions between the varying degrees of Kabbalah, an ancient Jewish tradition involving the mystical interpretation of religious texts, the essence of God, and His relationship to the universe. Practiced with the ultimate goal of spiritual fulfillment, its four iterations include philosophical Kabbalah, which involves the study and comparison of scripture in its varying translations. This is the only degree of Kabbalah that Christ-Centered Kabbalah and traditional Jewish Kabbalah share in common. Other forms of this practice include meditative Kabbalah, which comprises the personal study of Hebrew scripture with the intention of receiving divine spiritual insight from angels, and prophetic Kabbalah, which seeks to glean prophetic truths directly from God. The fourth degree of Kabbalah, practical Kabbalah, refers to the physical demonstration of God’s power via the manipulation of the natural world. Although practitioners of Christ-Centered Kabbalah do not engage in this form of Kabbalah, they believe that it was exemplified in the many miracles performed by Jesus Christ during his lifetime.