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THEMES of Featured Zohar Articles

Soul Journeys
The Zohar describes the ascent of the soul in the World to Come.
A person's spiritual make-up can generally be understood to be comprised of three major elements: the Nefesh - one's life force, Ruach - the power that causes this life force to endure in this physical world, and Neshama - the life force higher than these that ascends to the higher spiritual planes when a person deceases.
Pursuing the Hidden Sparks
The righteous will endanger themselves to return holy sparks.
"He armed his disciples who had grown up in his house";

When a tzadik sees that a wicked person has been deserted by his Good Inclination and become trapped by his sin, he goes and grabs him, for perhaps he can bring him back.
"And he pursued them as far as Dan" - he chases after him, after the sentence ['din'] of Purgatory.
David's Star, Abraham's Shield
The Attribute of loving-kindness needs special protection.
Abraham was the example of pure kindness in a dangerous world so G-d promised to shield him from all who would try and have power over him. King David likewise brought good into the world, sincerely relying on G-d as a shield, and was protected on many occasions.
Leaving Home
Abraham could not reach his potential outside the Land of Israel.
"G-d said to Abram, 'For your own sake, go away from your land, from your birthplace, and from your father's house'"

The Zohar teaches that G-d told Abram, "It is not fitting for you to be here, among these wicked people," for even though they did not influence Abram to emulate them, G-d told him that the evil which surrounded him taints the soul.
Above the Stars
Intermediate
Above the Stars
Abraham was taken to a place beyond mere worldly possibilities.
Children, health and livelihood do not depend upon one's merits and righteousness, but on one's mazal. Abraham saw in his constellation that he would not have a son. But G-d "took him outside", raising Abraham above the stars, beyond the realm of reason and nature, promising him that his offspring would be as numerous as the stars.
Now I Know You are Beautiful to Look At
Based on Zohar Breishit 81B
When Abraham went down to Egypt, he observed those low levels of external forces in their chambers in order to better keep his distance from the Egyptians in thought as well as in his behavior.

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