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Using the Tables of Correspondences




The tables of correspondences play an important role in the study and practice of Qabalah. In this short text I shall outline the main uses that they are put to as well as saying a little about the nature and limitations of the information to be found within them.
Firstly, the tables of correspondences are a method of attempting to explain and describe the inexplainable and indescriobable. Language is inadequate to explain the high sprititual truths represented by the spheres and paths of the Tree of Life; they are simply beyond that which words are able to express. The associations given in these tables therefore act as signposts along the way, pointing and guiding one in the right general direction so that you may find these qabalistic truths for yourself. They can be used for rational study, for meditation, or within rituals.



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In addition to this the tables provide a way for Qabalists to approach and relate to the study and practice of other spiritual traditions and disciplines; using these correspondences to more easily understand alien concepts and traditions by related their teachings to more familiar concepts. In this way they provide a system of classification through which one may engage in the study of the 'perrenial philosophy'.
As to the limitations it is necessary to make clear that the correspondences are neither absolute nor infallible.  To say, for example, that Geburah corresponds to the image of a crowned warrior in his chariot does not mean that this image can express the entire truth of the Geburah, and if we say that a particular sphere corresponds to a particular Chakkra in the eastern tradition, that does not mean that these two things are identical, but merely that there is a similarity and resonance that could be useful.
Also, these correspondences are not derived from some infallible revelation, but from centuries of work by various fallible people, collated and edited by myself. And some aspects of them may be coloured by personal experiences and prejudices rather than based upon unalterable truths
Whats more, these lists are in no way to be considered complete; there are many other things which could be usefully added but which are beyond the expertise of the authors whose work has gone into these lists.
Many practitioners find it a useful exercise to put together their own lists and tables, finding correspondeces which resonate with their own life experience and adding to established lists.

"One of the greatest difficulties experienced by the student - a difficulty which increases rather than diminishes with his advance in knowledge - is this: he finds it impossible to gain any clear idea of the meanings of the terms which he employs. every philosopher has his own meaning, even for such universally used terms as soul; and in most cases he does not so much as suspect that other writers use the term under a differnt connotation...
But we must not suppose that we know anything of the tree a priori: We must not work towards any other type of central truth than the nature of these symbols themselves. The object of our work must be, in fact, to discover the nature and powewers of each symbol. We must clothe the mathematical nakednes of each prime idea in a many-coloured garment of correspondenes with every department of thought." - Brief Essay Upon The Nature And Significance Of The Magical Alphabet, Aleister Crowley.
 



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Using the Tables of Correspondences
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