Parashat R’eih begins with a set of instructions for the Israelites to tear down the altars of other gods once they enter the Promised Land. By today’s standards, these instructions may appear to be harsh.
Kabbalah (also spelled Kabalah, Cabala, Qabala)—sometimes translated as “mysticism” or “occult knowledge—is a part of Jewish tradition that deals with the essence of God. Whether it entails a sacred text, an experience, or the way things work, Kabbalists believe that God moves in mysterious ways. However, Kabbalists also believe that true knowledge and understanding of that inner, mysterious process is obtainable, and through that knowledge, the greatest intimacy with God can be attained.