Actually, Andy, I now want to return to two things Patrice said in her "17 Questions" interview with you.
So the rituals that Bigou participated in, how do they relate to the Grail?
Well they were the grail rituals because they’re all documented on scrolls which take two hours to perform. They’re not simple. It’s at least a two hour event, and it has to be performed by initiates of a high order who have prepared for the ritual. Even to witness the rituals you have to be in a state of purification and have a very high energy level in your nervous system. So you would have been fasting, for instance.
You would have very clear thoughts, and it’s very similar, if not the same, as the one the Kabbalists did in the middle ages where they left these four dimensions and went off to other places, to other spheres. Some didn’t come back, one went mad, one ran away from Judaism, one died and the other lived and wrote a book the experience.
The story Patrice is referring to is NOT medieval ... it's from the early centuries CE and forms part of Jake's favorite book ... the Talmud. BTW, the story doesn't say they "went through portals to other dimensions". It says specifically they entered Paradise (Pardes) - the Garden of Eden (Orchard). http://www.kabbalaonline.net/Safedteach ... radise.asp
Four Who Entered Paradise
Translated and edited by Rabbi Moshe Miller from Pardes Rimonim
The Talmud (Chagiga 14b), Zohar (I, 26b) and Tikunei Zohar ( Tikun 40) report the following incident regarding four Mishnaic Sages
The Rabbis taught: Four [Sages] entered the Pardes [literally "the orchard."] Rashi explains that they ascended to heaven by utilizing the [Divine] Name, i.e., they achieved a spiritual elevation (Tosafot, ad loc) through intense meditation on G-d's Name]. They were Ben Azzai, Ben Zoma, Acher [Elisha ben Avuya, called Acher -- the other one -- because of what happened to him after he entered the Pardes] and Rabbi Akiva. Rabbi Akiva said to them [prior to their ascension]: "When you come to the place of pure marble stones, do not say, 'Water! Water!' for it is said, 'He who speaks untruths shall not stand before My eyes' (Psalms 101:7)." Ben Azzai gazed [at the Divine Presence - Rashi] and died. Regarding him the verse states, "Precious in the eyes of G-d is the death of His pious ones" (Psalms 116:15). Ben Zoma gazed and was harmed [he lost his sanity -- Rashi]. Regarding him the verse states, "Did you find honey? Eat only much as you need, lest you be overfilled and vomit it up" (Proverbs 25:16). Acher cut down the plantings [he became a heretic]. Rabbi Akiva entered in peace and left in peace.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pardes_(Jewish_exegesis
The Pardes typology describes four different approaches to Biblical exegesis in rabbinic Judaism (or - simpler - interpretation of text in Torah study). The term, sometimes also spelled PaRDeS, is an acronym formed from the name initials of these four approaches, which are:
Peshat (פְּשָׁט) — "plain" ("simple") or the direct meaning.
Remez (רֶמֶז) — "hints" or the deep (allegoric) meaning beyond just the literal sense.
Derash (דְּרַשׁ) — from Hebrew darash: "inquire" ("seek") — the comparative (midrashic) meaning, as given through similar occurrences.
Sod (סוֹד) (pronounced with a long O as in gold) — "secret" ("mystery") or the mystical meaning, as given through inspiration or revelation
Association with paradise
The Pardes system is often regarded as mystically linked to the word pardes (Hebrew פָּרְדֵּס), meaning orchard. "Pardes" is cognate with the word "paradise", and Firdaus (Arabic فِردَوس), and probably originally from Persian. It occurs only three times in the Tanakh, namely, in Song of Songs 4:13, Ecclesiastes 2:5, and Nehemiah 2:8. In the first of these passages it means "garden"; in the second and third, "park." In the apocalypses and in the Talmud the word is used of the Garden of Eden and its heavenly prototype. From this usage, comes Christianity's denotation of Paradise as the abode of the blessed.
I think this directly relates to Patrice's next response.
What book was that?
It was the Book of Splendour, or the Zoha. It’s in there, it’s called the Nut Garden, the actual experience, and then there was all the documentation of the experience in Girona. So what we’re really doing is going away from this planet to other places, reaching for effects from there, and resonances and bringing them here. Some people say that they’re not ours to have
This text BTW is called the Zohar
Here's the passage she's referring to. Notice BTW in the Talmudic story Rabbi Akiva is the only one who entered the garden and returned - sane, alive, etc. http://www.kabbalah.com/k/index.php/p=z ... 15&sec=554
259. Rabbi Akiva said to him: What is the meaning of the passage, "I went down into the garden of nuts" (Shir Hashirm 6:11)? He said to him: Come and behold. This garden comes out of Eden, and this is the Shechinah. Nut is the holy supernal Chariot, which is the four headwaters of the rivers that separates from the garden, WHICH IS THE SECRET OF THE FOUR FACES - NAMELY THE FACE OF A LION, THE FACE OF AN OX, THE FACE OF AN EAGLE, THE FACE OF A MAN. This nut has four holy heads inside, MEANING IN ITS FRUIT, AND IT ALSO HAS FOUR KLIPOT ('PEELS') THAT COVER THE FRUIT, WHICH ALLUDES TO THE FOUR KLIPOT: A STORM WIND; A GREAT CLOUD; A FIRE FLARING UP; AND A BRIGHTNESS, LIKE THE SUPERNAL CHARIOT. And when he said: "I went down," IN "I WENT DOWN INTO THE GARDEN OF NUTS," it is as we learned that so and so descended to the Chariot.
260. Rabbi Akiva said to him: If so, he should have said: 'I went down into the nut', WHICH IS THE CHARIOT. Why does it say, "I went down into the garden of nuts"? He said to him: Because THE GARDEN, WHICH IS MALCHUT, has all that is goodly in the nuts, FOR THEY GROW IN AND EMERGE FROM THIS GARDEN, WHICH IS MALCHUT. THEREFORE, HE MENTIONS THE GARDEN SPECIFICALLY. AND HE CONTINUES TO EXPLAIN HIS WORDS, AS TO WHY THE CHARIOT WAS ALLUDED TO IN THE NUT. Just as the nut is hidden and concealed from all sides IN ITS PEEL, so the Chariot that emerges from the garden, WHICH IS MALCHUT, is concealed from all sides. All these four heads in the nut are attached to each other on this side, MEANING IN THEIR CENTER, and separate on this side, OUTWARDLY. Thus, THE FOUR ASPECTS OF the Chariot attain each other in unity, in joy, in completeness, and they separate, each one to its individual aspect for which it was appointed. This is what is written: "That it is which compasses the whole land of Chavilah" (Beresheet 2:11). Likewise, "that is it which goes toward the east of Ashur" (Ibid. 14). It is the same with the rest of them.
261. Rabbi Akiva said: This dirt in the peel of the nut, MEANING IN THE FOUR KLIPOT THAT SURROUND IT, to what do they allude? He said to him: Even though the Torah did not reveal it, BECAUSE THE TORAH SPEAKS ONLY IN THE ASPECT OF GOOD IN THE NUT, it did reveal in this - MEANING IN THE ALMONDS - AS WILL BE EXPLAINED WILL THAT THE TORAH SPEAKS ABOUT THE FOUR KLIPOT OF THE ALMOND IN PARTICULAR, ALLUDING TO JUDGMENT, AND NOT THE ASPECT OF THEIR GOOD.
262. Come and behold: Some almonds are bitter BECAUSE OF THEIR PEELS, and some are sweet, implying that some are of Severe Judgment, TO WHICH THE BITTER ALMONDS ALLUDE, and some serve HOLINESS, TO WHICH THE SWEET ALMONDS ALLUDE. But we see that every open allusion TO THEM in the Torah is about Judgment, AND DOES NOT DISCUSS THE GOOD IN THEM - THE SWEET ONES. And so it is in Jeremiah, who was shown the Judgment THAT IS IN THEM as is written: "I see a rod of an almond tree (Heb. shaked)" (Yirmeyah 1:11). What is the meaning of shaked? Actual almonds - "AND IT WAS SAID TO HIM, 'FOR I WILL HASTEN (HEB. SHOKED) MY WORD TO PERFORM IT,'" MEANING TO UPROOT, CRUSH, DESTROY AND DEMOLISH...It is written by the rod of Aaron: "And yielded almonds" (Bemidbar 17:23), AND IT BECAME A SIGN TO THE REBELLIOUS PEOPLE. SO WE SEE THAT THE TORAH SPEAKS ONLY OF THEIR ASPECT OF JUDGMENT. And from the word itself, THAT THEY ARE CALLED 'ALMONDS' (HEB. SHKEDIM) it is understood that it refers to Severe Judgment, as is written: "And Hashem watched (Heb. yishkod) over the evil" (Daniel 9:14). And, "I will hasten my word," and so all of them. So it IS CLEAR THAT THE WORD "SHAKED" REFERS TO SEVERE JUDGMENT. Rabbi Akiva said to him: It seems that one could gain much wisdom from everything the Holy One, blessed be He, does, as is written: "Whatever Hashem has done is for His own purpose" (Mishlei 16:4). Rabbi Elazar says: We learn it from these words, "And Elohim saw everything that He had made and, behold, it was very good" (Beresheet 1:31). That is the meaning of "very" - IT IS GOOD to learn supernal Wisdom from it.
The Chariot = The Merkavah of the Vision of Ezekiel 10