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  ©2009 1 Zain  Y  Color the letter Zain orange. The surrounding area may be colored blue. Zain is the 7 th  letter of the Hebrew alphabet. The letter Zain  Y  is also the number 7. The English equivalent is Z. The letter Zain  Y  looks like the last letter, Vav V  with the Yod on top shifted over to sit on top of the upright descending line. The letter name Zain,  FIY  means “sword” and also more generally “weapon”. In this light, the yod on top looks like the scabbard that protects the hand and the descending line is the blade of the sword. The previous letter, Vav V  meant nail or hook; something which binds other things together. In a sense, each Hebrew letter is the opposite of the preceding and the following letter. This principle is very evident here as a sword does the opposite of unite. A sword divides and separates. A sword cuts, dissects, and cleaves apart. Thus Zain includes the meanings of division, contrast, opposition, distinction and the mental function of discrimination. Discrimination allows us to perceive fine differences, hones our mental perceptions, and makes our mind “sharp”. Seven, the number for which Zain is the symbol, is an important number in the Mystery teachings. There are seven chakras, seven notes of the diatonic scale of music, seven colors, seven days of the weeks, seven powers of human consciousness, seven laws of nature, seven stages of spiritual unfoldment, seven days of creation. The star of David, the Mogen David, has six triangles around a hexagram in the center, thus seven parts. The six triangles fold in perfectly, completely covering the exact area of the hexagram. Six coins fix around one coin of the same size. Six honeycomb hexagons fit perfectly around one in the center. Because of these geometric relationships, seven is called the  ©2009 2 number of maximal compactness. The astrologer, Dane Rudhyar, describes the development of human consciousness in cycles of seven years (1/4 of the ~28 year cycle of Saturn). The six days of the working week are followed by the seventh, the Shabbat, which should be a day in which your mental attitude is that all the work is done. The sensory function ascribed to Zain is the sense of smell. Someone who can differentiate between type of perfumes or other odors is said to have a sharp sense of smell. The connection between smell and discrimination is evident in sayings such as, “I smell a rat.” “Something stinks.” “Let your nose lead you.” “You can sniff out the truth.” Smell is unique amongst the five senses. All the other four senses are processed in the cerebral cortex before reaching our awareness. This means that we can think about them before reacting. No so with the sense of smell. The sensory impulses from the inner nose reach the hypothalamus and create immediate emotional reactions without the conscious mind being able to inhibit them. Smell “gets you” like no other sense. Zain is the 17 th  path of wisdom, which defines Zain as the Disposing Intelligence or the Intelligence of Sensation. To dispose is to set apart, to divide, to apportion – this much here, this much there. This mode of consciousness includes ideas of adjustment, classification and organization. This includes the values by which we make decisions and thus forms the nature of our disposition. It is through the impact of experiences and our reaction to them that our powers of observation, classification and fine discrimination are developed. Fine development of our sensory awareness is stimulated by the need to overcome inimical circumstances. This must be developed before inner plane awareness is awakened or much error will ensue. Even in the outer world, our prejudices, erroneous opinions and fixed ideas prevent us from seeing things as they are. Our sensory awareness is “colored” by our preconceptions. However, in the outer world, the physical objects are relatively constant in form and this prevents us, for the most part, from straying too far away from reality. On the inner planes, there is no such constancy. What you observe changes its form according to your projections. The substance of the inner planes wraps around you and your imaginings like a dream, making it seem like it is real. Until you can (at least temporarily) “dispose” of your personal unregenerate opinions, ideas and prejudices, inner plane awareness will only reflect your own errors back to you. It is best to not attempt to awaken on the inner until much clean up work has been accomplished on the outer. You have to at least be able to be honest with yourself about your immaturities. You need to know the areas that still need purification and correction. Transforming and transmuting them takes time and requires the assistance of what is called the “Higher Self”. You can ! t do the deeper clean up work “by yourself”.  ©2009 3 There are personal, family, national, racial karmic imbalances that require more than “personal” effort to clear. But as long as you are more or less aware of where your problems still lie, you can define them and put them aside (dispose of them) when exploring the inner worlds. When you first awaken on the inner planes, you are confronted with what has been called “the dweller on the threshold”. This consists of all of your most undesirable and immature traits. It seems like a real beast, confronting you and blocking your path. Unless you can “own” it and know that all the yucky qualities it possesses are you own, you cannot perceive accurately on the inner. Everything you perceive will be colored by your own junk. Many people try to be spiritual by avoiding all awareness of their own shadow qualities. This is dangerous. Whatever isn ! t owned is projected upon others. And then those others give us back what we have projected upon them. This is often called “bad luck”. Until you can admit to yourself that you do have antisocial drives and tendencies, you will find others expressing those very qualities towards you. This is the nature of projection. You receive the very qualities you have but that you deny in yourself. They are “in your face” until you resolve those very issues within yourself. This is especially true of spiritual aspirants. We experience a kind of “instant karma”. The extra energy that spiritual studies such as you are here undertaking speeds up the process of awakening. Unresolved problems come back at you “with a vengeance”, demanding that you become aware of them and attend to them. Some try to be spiritual by avoiding outer experiences whatsoever. They “meditate” as a way to avoid painful outer conditions of their lives. Qabalah teaches the opposite. The seemingly inimical conditions of this life are the very prods that increase awareness. In is not through closing off sensory awareness that we become spiritually aware. Rather it is through finely tuning each and every one of the senses to the utmost. When you experience something that exalts your awareness, use every sense consciously. Feel, see, touch, smell and taste as deeply as you are able and the desire to know even more deeply the nature of that which is exalting you. It is this state of complete sensory awareness and the intense longing for more that will open the inner awareness. This is the “Intelligence of Sensation”. In Astrology, Zain corresponds to the sign of Gemini c , the twins. This already makes logical sense as Zain cuts and divides one into two. Zain discriminates between “this and not that”. Identical twins are very similar in appearance and it requires fine powers of discrimination to tell them apart. Gemini rules the lungs, collar bones, shoulders, arms and hands – and all of these come in pairs. Gemini c  is ruled by the planet Mercury C , the planetary correspondence of our letter Beth  B . Mercury is the “winged-footed swift messenger of the Gods who flies between  ©2009 4 Heaven and Earth, exchanging information. The Greeks called Mercury, Hermes. To Hermes is ascribed the invention of numbers, letters and words – the tools of the conscious mind. In Egyptian mythology, Mercury is Anubis, the jackel-headed god who, like any dog, has a highly developed sense of smell. On the Tree of Life, Zain is the pathway that connects the 3 rd  sphere, Binah, Understanding to the 6 th  sphere, Tiphareth, Beauty. Thus this path connects the cosmic Mother to the Son. As Zain is the number 7, we can obtain insights into the meanings of the 7 th  sphere of the Tree of Life by considering the correspondences of Zain. At first glance, this is not logical. Zain is the sword of discrimination, an intellectual function that separates topics for individual consideration. The seventh sphere is Netzach, sphere of the planet Venus, the goddess of love, creativity and beauty. Love unites and discrimination divides. So what is the connection? One can only exercise discrimination in areas where you have great interest. You have to care (Venus) before you are able to focus your attention that sharply. Many people believe that they cannot concentrate well. That ! s not true. When in great danger, everyone concentrates vividly. For most of us, it is only when we have great problems that we are able to concentrate. When confronted with an urgent problem, we think about it almost constantly. The secret of success is to concentrate that intently upon chosen positives instead of only upon negative topics.
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