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What are the Four Worlds?

Kabbalah provides a view of creation and existence based upon a division into four levels, which are beautifully illustrated in this verse from the Bible:

Everyone that is [1] called by My name, and [2] whom I created for My glory, [3] I formed him, yea [4] I made him. - Isaiah / Yeshayahu 43:7

These four levels are called the Four Worlds, and outline a conceptual view of how subtle, latent potentialites become manifested into physical form. The first world relates to the highest, most subtle level, and the lowest world relates to the physical world, while the middle two illustrate the stages towards full manifestation.

four-worlds-of-kabbalah

  1. Atziluth [אצילות], the world of Archetypes or Emanations, the level of potentialities or "blueprints." Example: In the sperm and ovum are the possibilities for a child.

  2. Briah [בריאה], the world of Creation. Example: the father and mother unite sexually and the embryo of a human being is created.

  3. Yetzirah [יצירה], the world of Formation. Example: the child is formed in the womb for nine months.

  4. Assiah [עשיה], the world of Action. Example: the child is born into the physical world.

To learn more about the Four Worlds, study this free online course: Gnostic Kabbalah.

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