Omer 12, Inspired Learning

Omer 12, Inspired Learning

Day 12: Hod she’b’Gevurah, Splendour in Judgment

Gorgeous camellia blossom on the sidewalk

TEXT STUDY: Divine inspiration filled him with wisdom and with understanding and with knowledge and with every craft (Exod. 35:31).

COMMENTS: To make a splendid judgment, Kabbalah teaches, we need all three of these skills. Wisdom, khokhma, is the first flash of intuition. Understanding, bina, is the fully developed insight. Knowledge, da’at, is the integration of the new idea into thought and practice. (For more detail on this, click here.)

Or, as the book of Proverbs puts it, With wisdom a house will be built; with understanding it will be well-established; and with knowledge its rooms will be filled with all precious and beautiful things (24:3-4).

Both Tankah and Kabbalah say you need all three skills. But, really, no two minds are alike. We all use the skills in different proportions. Some of us are better at creative insight, or logical deduction, or integration. So, maybe we can use the three concepts to better understand our own learning style—and the role of our spirituality in our learning.


IDEAS. How can it be helpful to understand your own learning style?

FEELINGS. What do “aha” moments feel like to you? Do you feel this way most strongly during experiences of khokhma, binah, or da’at?

PRACTICES. When you want to solve a problem, into which of the three stages do you put the most conscious energy? Does one stage come to you more easily than the others?

Think of how you recently approached some practical, intellectual, or psychological issues. Did you work with the three stages of learning in the same way? Or differently, for each kind of challenge?

GOD. In which of these three stages of learning does God (or divine inspiration) seem most present to you?

About the questions

These questions take off from the text above. And they also go deeper into the day’s reflections in the book Shechinah, Bring Me Home: Kabbalah and the Omer in Real Life.

There are many ways to explore these questions. You can: Tell a story from your own life. Give an example from a book or a movie. Write a poem. Analyze a concept. Offer a definition. Draw a picture. Sing a song.

New to the Omer? Here’s a guide to the theory and practice.

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