Kabbalah By Heart

Allison Gilbert, LMFT, Certified Kabbalah Coach


This blog comes from my heart. I want to share the Judaism that Jews are yearning for. To help them access the beautiful wisdom coming from their own back yard, ancestors and tribe. And this is for non-Jews as well, to come to know that what has evolved into Western Civilization has come from a depth that is ancient and rarely revealed and mostly distorted due to mistranslations and cultural appropriation and blind anti-semitism. 


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Are You Shy Like Me?

Posted on January 18, 2023 at 5:55 PM

Shyness & Introversion

I have read that Introverts aren't necessarily shy people but the two are very much linked in my case. My shyness has furthered my being introverted but my introversion has been a very good thing!


Reasons I am shy:



  • My early upbringing was with a highly judgmental mother (who actually become a superior court judge!) So, I decided to stay quiet to avoid the painful criticisms that would come my way.
  • I developed a mistrust of my inner promptings.
  • Early on I made the decision to not ask for help because I had experiences when there were no adults to depend on.
  • I came to believe that if I stayed hidden, I would stay safe.
  • Reply back with the reasons you became shy!



My shyness created a huge Inner World!! That's what I think my introversion is and it's a big gift!! I want to share about how using cards has come out of the strength of being an Introvert.





Cards As Visual Affirmations of Fear


When I was under 5 yo, my mother sent me and my sister, 2 yrs younger, out to play on the street alone while she studied for law school. Our little dog, Barbette (a miniature black poodle) was our babysitter (this was Mom's joke). The neighborhood kids took us inside of a camper where we were showed Monster Cards. Do any of you remember those from the early 60's? At the time, those cards really scared me!!!


Until just recently, I never put that memory together with my later interest in using cards for self-improvement.


When I was in grad school, I was so shy I would never talk in class and so the director of the program wanted to kick me out! He called me a J.A.P. Can you believe it?! That's anti-Semitism. My Tarot teacher stood up for me and I was able to stay in school.


Cards Became Not Scary but Helpful


The Tarot cards became a way for me to help myself:



  • to work on myself
  • to find answers within myself
  • to trust myself
  • to become stronger in my Inner Wisdom


They worked within my introverted boundaries to build me up from the inside. Reply to me whether the above list is something you want and need too! Or let me know what YOUR needs are.


So when I created the Kabbalah Cards, I added an element of working with Jewish wisdom. That helps with pride in my heritage as well as being able to apply Jewish wisdom to my life. The cards I created are not in any way connected to Tarot cards. They are completely different but the way I teach people to work with them is the same as how I helped myself with Tarot cards.


Kabbalah Cards Site

Unfortunately, the printing website I send people to to purchase my cards doesn't allow me to know who has purchased them!! So, if you do get a deck, please let me know so I can stay in touch with you and help you learn to use them.


Take care,




My Kabbalah Card that reminds me of Introversion:


Kabbalah Cards are Visual Affirmations of Jewish Wisdom



Happy Lucky Friday the 13th!

Posted on January 13, 2023 at 6:00 PM

Is Friday the #13 really a LUCKY day?



Well, according to Judaism it is!!! Here's a list of all the reasons why the #13 is lucky:


This list was compiled by John Kunza on this website talking about the Jewish associations with the #13:



  • 13 attributes of Hashem/Mercy- שלושה עשר מידיא (appears in Exodus after we were forgiven for the whole golden calf incident)
  • 13 Jewish principles of faith according to Maimonides
  • 13 is the age a Jewish male becomes obligated to follow Jewish law, (i.e. the age at which a Bar Mitzvah is performed)
  • Israel (Jacob) had 13 children
  • According to gematria (Jewish numerology) the words אהבה (Ahavah/Love) and אחד (Echad/Unity) add up to 13
  • Number of days of Yom Tovs (festival days) in a year in the diaspora
  • 13 months in a leap year on the Hebrew calendar
  • Adar II (or the 13th month in a leap year) is considered extra lucky because the month of Adar according to tradition is a “lucky month”
  • 13th of Adar (or Adar II in leap years) is the Fast of Esther
  • Unit Shayetet 13 (שייטת 13‎;) is considered to be the Navy Seals of the IDF


But he left out one: the word "GOOD" in Hebrew = 13 in gematria. The word good in Hebrew is "tov" which is used in Genesis in reference to the third day - "And God saw that this was good. (13) And there was evening and there was morning, a third day."




You might argue - but that's Tuesday, the third day. What about FRIDAY? So, Friday is actually a very good day in Judaism since it is the day we begin to greet each other with "Gut Shabbos!" or "Shabbat Shalom!" since we are full of anticipation for the holiest day of the week: the 7th day! Friday is permeated with the Sabbath because most of us are preparing for the Sabbath on that day by cooking, planning meals, inviting guests, bathing and choosing the clothes we will wear! Friday then is associated with a Holy, Divine day.


Tarot and the 13th Card


When I was in grad school many years ago, I learned that the #13 was associated with the Tarot card called "Death". Yikes!! But I found out that it didn't mean "death", it meant one door closing and another door opening. So, could it be that all depends on your interpretation of the #13? Yes, I believe it does and why not interpret things in a positive way?


The word "Tarot" itself spelled backwards can be read: Torah. So, let's interpret things in a Holy, Divine way. Stav Appel has shown very clearly that the Marseille deck, which all the later decks were based on, was created by Crypto Jews in the 1600's hiding Judaism in the cards because it was a time when you'd be hung, burned or otherwise slaughtered for teaching it. (See his video lectures here.)


A Bit About My Kabbalah Cards


When I learned Tarot, I learned it from a teacher who's wisdom I wanted to absorb. So I took all her classes on Tarot and used the cards to try to heal myself. I later wondered why it was called "Tarot" when it sounded like "Torah" and why there was something called "Qabalah" attached to it and why there were Hebrew letters on the cards as well and why did the major arcana have the same number as the Hebrew alef-bet but how strange that we weren't learning anything about Judaism!!! This made me determined to create my own cards.




49 is also an interesting number because it can be associated with the 49 Gates of Wisdom. "The Babylonian Talmud states that there are 50 gates of wisdom and Moses was only revealed 49 of them; therefore, no human, not even Moses, can attain the absolute Truth of 50. (Babylonian Talmud Nedarim 38a)" (This quote is from this webpage.) In addition, the number 49 equals the number 13 in numerology because 4+9=13!!


The daily ritual I created to use with these cards is like asking a question and then going to the Rebbe's letters or to a holy book and randomly choosing a page to answer your question. Plus, it's not about fortune-telling. Instead it's about self-trust. It's using a mirror outside of you to unlock your own Inner Knowing. It can help remind you that you have all the answers to your own questions. Just pull a card, see what it says on it. If it doesn't help you answer your own question, well then, it's ok because you've just learned something Jewish from the Kabbalah that I have learned from all my teachers. Jewish history, holidays, concepts, Tree of Life.


For people who have bought cards from me, I have now put up on my website pdf's to download to help you work with them. Just go here and find the booklet. If you just pull one card a day or a week, you can learn lots about Judaism and Kabbalah. And if you want to apply these concepts to your life, do what I learned to do with the Tarot - pull one card and refer back to it as your day or week goes along. Apply that concept to your life.




Because really, it all depends on your interpretation!!



What Are Miracles?

Posted on December 10, 2022 at 2:40 PM

We are now in the month of Kislev, past the full moon, coming close to the holiday of Chanukah. And so, as the moon turns darker, we will start lighting the menorah on the 25th of Kislev (this year that day starts at sunset on the 18th of Dec.). Each night we'll be adding one more candle until the entire menorah of 8 candles is lit up on the darkest night of winter.


See the free preview of the "How to Celebrate Chanukah" handout on my Kabbalah and Judaism 101 online school in the course called "Learn About the Winter Calendar".


Publicizing the Miracle

We light the menorah by the front door or window so it can be seen from the outside of our homes - in order to "publicize the miracle" that happened when the Maccabees fought the Syrian-Greeks and took back control of the 2nd Temple. This was before the Romans finally destroyed it and the Jewish people were exiled from their homeland for 2000 years. (In the 1880's, they miraculously started moving back to that land!!) So what's the miracle of Chanukah that we are supposed to be publicizing anyway???


We don't celebrate the miracle of the small band of soldiers who fought off a huge army, though that was a completely amazing miracle! Instead, we celebrate the miracle of a tiny cruse of oil lighting up the Temple menorah for 8 nights. A tiny bit of the sacred oil was discovered undamaged but it was only enough for 1 night! Still, it lasted for 8! That's the miracle we are publicizing.


To me this translates as: When the "Temple" of your life seems completely defiled and even unkosher pigs have been slaughtered on your "alter", please remember that a tiny bit of "sacred oil" can transform EVERYTHING, doing more than you ever could have believed!


The Dark Moon of Kislev

It's finally raining in California! Rain is a holy gift from G-d. As I look out at the trees all around me in my new home, I notice that every drop of rain on the trees looks like a pinprick of light this morning as the sky clears. Now isn't that a miracle? Rain in California seems like a miraculous event after many years of drought.


According to Kabbalah, the darkest places contain the most light. What does that mean? Why does it feel so good after a dark day of rain? How is it that the darkest times in our lives bring us the most growth, healing and renewal? Can you see the miraculous oil in the midst of your own dark times? Have you been noticing any miracles in your lives over the past 2 weeks since the coming of this darkest month of miracles?



But what IS a miracle? According to the Tzamach Tzedek there are four types of miracles:


"1. Those that supersede nature entirely, such as occurred in the Exodus from Egypt.


2. Miracles flimsily dressed in a guise of nature, such as the victory of Chanukah {of the few over the many} and the Purim story {the story of Esther}.


3. Miracles of coincidence and synchronicity, where it is apparent that things out of the ordinary have occurred – yet all events have normal explanations.


4. Miracles that go unnoticed, perhaps even perceived as unfortunate. This last form is the greatest of all. A time will come when our eyes will open and we will see these hidden miracles and say, ‘The miracles of Egypt are nothing in comparison to these.'"


This life can sometimes seem like challenge after challenge after challenge. Just when one is resolved, up comes another one. The challenges are even coming faster now that it seems like time has revved up! It's hard to keep our thoughts, beliefs and attitudes in the direction of perceiving the miraculous amidst all the darkness. Still, each challenge that comes in is so perfectly tailored to the development of each individual soul that the challenge itself can seem miraculous!


Gratitude Brings Miracles

If you can focus your mind to look for miracles, you are really focusing your mind to look for the good things that are happening to you. If you think about what you have in your life, rather than what you don't have, you will feel a sense of gratitude. That gratitude can expand you into a sense of the miraculous. Some people make a list of things they are grateful for at the end of each day - to help them focus their minds on gratitude.


That tiny pinprick of Light builds on itself. As you look for miracles and focus on gratitude, you will begin to see that your life is exactly the way it's supposed to be. Challenge yourself - can you even be grateful for the hard things in life? When something difficult comes up, can you refocus your mind on what you are gaining from this situation? Doing so can help you to see the biggest light hidden within the darkest places.


I have posted my lessons on the winter months of the Jewish calendar. Here you'll find the handout for how to celebrate Chanukah. The whole 3 month course can be found here:


I have made it so that the entire month of Tevet is viewable for free. That's the month of anger - so it can be helpful to those who have challenges dealing with this emotion.


Enjoy! And Happy Chanukah. May you find that tiny bit of "oil" bringing you a miraculous new Light this season. May you reveal all of your hidden miracles!



Why Is Time Going So FAST?

Posted on November 9, 2022 at 5:20 PM

Today is November 9, 2022 and the 15th of Cheshvan 5783 on the Jewish calendar.


I think all of us can agree, time seems to be moving faster these days than in previous years. Why is that happening? Is it simply that we have gotten older or is it a mirage of some sort? Usually when time flies, it's because we are having fun, right?


I don't think that we are having more fun than usual....unfortunately.


Still, we ARE sensing something quite remarkable and perhaps shall I dare say, other-worldly?


Seems to me, I start on Sunday and by the time I get to Wednesday, I can't believe that I am nearly at Shabbos! Wasn't it the new year of 2022 recently, and I am already 11 months later? Weren't my taxes done just yesterday but now it's almost time to do them again? Didn't my husband die in 2020, just yesterday, but it's been over 2 years! So much is happening and it's all such a blur.


Yet, there are times that I feel quite stuck and sludging through incredible blocks. And it can feel like there is no end in sight yet things flip on a dime and then all seems to be moving in the right direction.


Do you understand what I am saying? Do you experience this too? And as hard as things can be, are you also learning and developing at warp speed? Are you also discovering that you might have some real psychic-like powers you didn't realize you had? What IS going ON?


All of this reminds me of something I'll never forget that I learned years ago in a Kabbalah class with Shifra Hendrie. She taught that the material world is becoming more permeable, more spiritual. That all of the mitzvot that all of the Jews have done over all of the millennia has made this mundane reality more accessible to the Divine that lies within it.


Somehow, that hit me and it made sense.


You may know of or heard of a mitzvah. Usually it refers to a good deed. And it is literally translated as commandment - like in the 10 commandments. They're usually referring to the bulk of spiritual practices that make up Jewish religious activity - and it's said that there are 613 of these practices. The Hebrew word itself "mitzvah" also means "bound" or "connect". So, the Jew has literally 613 ways to connect to spiritual Source, many times a day in many different ways, throughout the entire day.


A prayer is a mitzvah. Prayers in Hebrew always start with the word, "Blessed are You" or "Baruch Atah". (CH at the end of Baruch is pronounced with the gutteral H sound) The word Baruch can also be read Berech if you change the vowels and Berech means "knee". The knee of course allows you to bow down. The ancient sages always made connections between Hebrew words to create more meaning. So the meaning of "Baruch" indicates that in the practice of prayer, you are drawing down Divine energy. A simple way to explain how this works is by showing what happens when a person says a prayer over food or drink.


When saying a prayer over food, one is literally drawing down into the food Divine energy or revealing and releasing the divine energy that is locked within the materiality of the food. The Jewish prayer over a specific food simply acknowledges that food's divine Source of existence. The Jewish prayer before eating isn't like other religions' prayers over eating because it isn't about gratitude. Instead, it's about acknowledging that specific food's Divine Source. In authentic Kabbalah from Jewish sources, it is understood that through a human being's awareness and acknowledgement, the divine sparks within food are enabled to be released from the dense materiality of the food and then once it is eaten, can be used as fuel for another mitzvah.

Example of prayer over a milk, meat, or a drink of water: Blessed are you, Lord our G-d, King of the Universe, by whose word all things came to be.  An example of the prayer over fruit: Blessed are You, L-rd our G-d, King of the Universe, who creates fruit of the tree.

This "releasing of sparks" can be done with anything that is in this material world. Each mitzvah you do allows those sparks to be released from behind the veil of materiality. Those sparks are now allowed to be revealed rather than hidden.

This is a simple way of understanding how and why time seems to be flying. The very materiality of everything is starting to reveal a deeper reality where there is really no time at all. No space at all or perhaps, really, a space filled with timelessness, fullness and wholeness, where it is empty of all separate things.

In Judaism, this entire world is moving in the direction of oneness, peace, and unity. We are traveling back to having this world be a Garden of Eden. We will eventually be seeing clearly and constantly that we live on a supernatural planet, in a cosmic existence and are deeply connected to our Source of Being and each other, always at all times.

As we find ourselves hurtling through this calendar year, I find myself holding on to the Jewish calendar in order to get my bearings. Six months ago we were in the time that connects Passover with Shavous. It's really just one long holiday of letting go of whatever enslaves us so that we can find ourselves in unity surrounding a holy mountain able to download directions from the Highest Mind. Am I becoming a clear channel for that Highest mind?


I am so far from being a clear channel!!!! But I know that's the goal. That we all become transparent to Higher wisdom and develop the ability to take the Higher road in all we do. And as far as I am from my highest intention, I know deep down in my soul and I am completely sure of this one thing: that we all have that hope, desire and wish to be on the higher road.


And so we went through the High holidays in non-stop prayer for days at a time, renewing our commitment to the purpose of mankind, and then finishing several weeks-long series of holidays by dancing! Then we started the Jewish new year re-reading Genesis and remembering who we are and what the plan was for creation. But now we are in the darkness of the year and finding the light - which is what our journeys on this earth plane are all about. All of the dark places we encounter have been uniquely designed for each and every human being. Because finding that light and transforming that darkness is what human life is all about. And so, time will continue to go faster and faster as we transform the heavy materiality within our own consciousness by bringing down the Higher perspectives and thus, transforming the density of our material world in the process.




I highly recommend contacting your local Chabad and getting yourself a Jewish Art calendar - just google Chabad and your city. Or let me know and I will get one to you! Or search for Jewish Art calendar here: judaica-world.com/index.php/jewish-art-calendar-5783-2022-2023-large.html In it you'll find a monthly explanation of the Jewish holidays for that month. If you want to light candles every Sabbath, it will give you candle-lighting times for each Friday night. It also gives you knowledge of when all the Jewish holidays are - they change every year since the Jewish calendar is based on the moon. It also gives you the name of the Torah portion that we read that week so you can read along with Jews all over the world, finishing all 5 books of the bible by the next Jewish new year!

I know that astrologically there are planets going retrograde and an eclipse going on and many of us are looking to astrology to understand how we are being effected in these times. But looking at the Jewish calendar is another way to find your bearings. I love it that I know when the moon is going to be full because I know when the 15th of the Jewish month is. Following this calendar connects me with the moon's transits and I know I am starting a new series of lessons once a new Jewish month starts. Plus, I get to know what opportunities I have to work on my issues with, the energies available during that specific month on the calendar - the energies are based on all that has happened to the Jewish people throughout the millennia. Each month has it's own unique flavor for our own specific renewal.




I wish you all a deeply transformative winter.




Kabbalah and Judaism 101 Online Course


Kabbalah Cards



Happy Birthday!!

Posted on September 21, 2022 at 2:55 PM

Happy Birthday?

Yes! On Jewish calendar, today is the first day of Creation. And tomorrow is the 2nd day of creation and so on. We start the countdown of the first 6 days of creation today, leading up to the holiday of Rosh HaShanah, the Jewish New Year. We celebrate the new year on the 6th day of creation - the day human beings were created.


Jewish Calendar:


Today I will share some fun things with you about the Jewish New Year. Recipes mostly! I have a 2lb brisket in my fridge that I will put into a crock pot on the Friday night after Rosh HaShanah. And I plan to bake an apple cake. These are traditional foods for Rosh HaShanah. But why make it on Friday when the holiday is over? Answer: See Shabbos Shuvah below!


But first, you should know that according to Judaism, creation started in the year 3761 BCE.


Gematria of the Date

This year will be 5783 on the Jewish calendar! Gematria is Jewish numerology where each Hebrew letter is also a number. So if you spell out the year in Hebrew, gematria can be done with the date in order to look deeper at what this year will be all about.

A Kabbalist I love to learn from looks at the letters for each year and finds passages in Torah (the Jewish literature, including "old" testament, psalms, etc.) and lets us know what the new year holds through it's letters! He said that if you spell out this year, each letter starts the Hebrew words that are translated as "May it be a year of great wonder" Learn more about Rabbi Ginsburgh here.​



So yes, today is a birthday of sorts! But the new year is not counted until the creation of mankind on the 6th day. That's how important our purpose is to this world!


And what is our purpose? Why were we created? Isn't that just the most important question of our existence? What am I here for? Why was this world created? And what am I supposed to be doing with my life? I created a Kabbalah card for the concept of "Dira B'Tachtonim" which are the Hebrew words for the purpose of creation:



Shabbos Shuvah

Friday night between Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur is Shabbos Shuvah - the Shabbos (Sabbath). For 25 hours, the world is replete with the strongest energy of the entire year that can help us renew and return to our Purpose in Life! Shabbos Shuvah is from sundown next Friday night through sundown Saturday.


If you have any amends to make, this is the time to do it.


Here's a great video/song for Rosh HaShanah:



Do you know what Challah is? (the "CH" in Hebrew is pronounced like the gutteral H in German.) Challah is the traditional bread served on Shabbos and holidays in the Jewish religion. If you've never tried this delicious bread, you are in for a treat. Go check it out at Trader Joe's!! They sell it! It comes long and braided during the rest of the year but during this time of year, it comes in a round loaf - symbolizing the round cycle of the year. Traditionally it can be made with raisins for a sweet new year.


A Sweet Year

We also eat apples dipped in honey to symbolize the wish for a sweet new year. We greet each other with "Shana Tova oo'Metooka!" meaning "Have a good and sweet new year!" Why sweet? Because in traditional Jewish thought, everything is "good", as G-d said in Genesis when He created everything. Still, we may not be able to know why something is good because it makes us feel bad! So not everything feels good which is why we wish for a "sweet" year too. For even medicine, which can heal you, can be bitter, just like the good things in life that feel bad.


I Love to Cook

I used to bake my own challah every Friday and when my kids were little, they'd each get their own dough to braid. The house would smell awesome on Fridays! Unfortunately, my house is empty now (except for me) and since I still love cooking, I end up with too much food over here! It's just - who will eat all this food with me? That can be a problem...because, yeah, I don't want to eat an entire loaf of challah all by myself - which I could do since I love it so much!


This weekend I have a friend who just went through surgery and so I asked her if she will eat red meat.... Not everyone does these days! And she said she loves brisket. Yes!!! So, she'll be getting some of my food, instead of my freezer!


Recipe Links

Here are links to the recipes I plan to make:


Brisket like my mother-in-law used to make:



Apple Cake instead of Honey Cake - but I'll add less sugar!! And replace it with a sugar substitute, like honey and stevia!



Here's my recipe for Challah:

Mix one packet of yeast and 1/3 cup of sugar into 1 1/3 cups of lukewarm water. Let stand and dissolve for a few minutes.

Add 1/3 cup of oil, 2 eggs and 1 1/4 tsp of salt

Add 3-4 cups of flour and mix and knead, adding more flour to make it not too sticky - up to 1 or 2 more cups but the less flour you add, the better.

Once it's done kneading and is a smoother dough, turn into an oiled bowl and then turn dough over in the bowl to get all sides coated with the oil from the bowl.

Cover and let rise for an hour until doubled in size. I put in a warm oven that's been turned off.

Take out, divide and braid. Then brush beaten egg over the loaf.

Bake for 1/2 hr to 40 min. depending on the size of the loaf. This recipe can make 2 small loaves or 1 large one.

So Eat on Rosh HaShanah because 10 days later is the fast day of Yom Kippur!!

But in the meantime, Hear the Shofar. On Rosh HaShanah and all of the past month we've been hearing the haunting sounds of the Shofar. Take a listen and tell me if it doesn't do something inside of you to hear this!


Blessings for a sweet new year!




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Endings and New Beginnings - Rosh Ha Shanah, The Jewish New Year

Posted on August 31, 2022 at 2:35 PM

My Purpose?


I have written most of my blogs here first as an email blast that I started in 2016. The first thing I will always remember a psychic telling me when my husband was diagnosed in 2017 was that my soul had plans and had been desiring to accomplish something important and that all of this trauma will help me to do that. Is my Kabbalah class the thing that my soul wanted to accomplish? And the cards I had created? I have been wondering. Maybe it's what I will learn through accomplishing that. I guess I started the cards in 2015. But the Kabbalah class was much earlier - maybe 2011? I don't know.


But I had abandoned all of that in order to go through the excruciating last years of my husband's life - it was a gradual 3 year decline. I believe I put everything on the back-burner. And I kept thinking, is this Kabbalah stuff I'm teaching going to end too or do I need to revive it? Since May, I have decided to revive it and realized that much of my wanting to let it go had to do with overwhelm and fear of not doing it all correctly. I have always had a belief of needing to do the right thing and also have had much insecurity about doing the wrong thing - as if there was one right thing for me, and as if I could prevent bad things from happening if I just did the right thing, and could avoid regrets over doing the wrong thing. I am letting go of that irrational belief because truly, there is no one right thing and whatever is done "wrong" can be corrected anyway and it isn't the end of the world to do the "wrong" thing! Regrets are irrational too because I believe that everything happens for a good reason and have learned from Kabbalah, that it was all in G-d's plan or it would not have happened. Anyway, I simply moved forward and did whatever made me happy because writing, and being creative makes me happy.




I am retiring from my psychotherapy practice too. I decided that I deserved to be retired after all I have been through. And I deserve to take a nap every day. And I deserve to have a happy, relaxing, fun life now, full of creative pursuits, like writing this blog to you! It's scary and sad though, to let go of people who have been with me for over a year and some of them for over a decade! Endings are not easy! March 1st of next year is my deadline for retirement. And I have planned a trip to Israel mid-March to celebrate all I have accomplished and to "put forward into the Universe" all I wish for my new life.


This Month - New Beginnings


This last month of the year on the Jewish calendar is really feeling like new beginnings for me. The month is called Elul and is so mystical and magical!! I love it. It is said that the King is in the Field. And this year I am so in tune with that feeling! It's a huge blessing to see the Mystery here in our realm, in our "boots on the ground". It's a month of letting go of and correcting missteps that you have done over the past year, making your amends, and making your recommitments to the Purpose of your life for the coming year. It's all in preparation for the Jewish New Year starting next month: Rosh Hashanah - which is the day that man was created on the 6th day of creation! You can read Genesis and not know this if you don't learn from Jews! And you'd never know that this time of the year is when Moses went up Mt Sinai for the 2nd time to get forgiveness for the debacle of the Golden Calf. So the month is replete with the energies of forgiveness!

This is the Kabbalah card I created for Elul:

Kabbalah and Judaism 101 Class


So I re-did my class for Elul in my Kabbalah and Judaism 101 online class, and it is available for viewing online. And I broke it down into sections so that you can go and look and read a bit at a time. Those of you who have taken the classes I taught in Soquel, will recognize the handouts and lectures. But here it's all online so you can easily click on links to watch videos, listen to audios or read articles that I've recommended for each month of the year. In my class, I go through the entire year of the Jewish calendar - 12 classes for 12 months. I figure that the best way to learn about Judaism and Kabbalah - even if you know nothing about them - is to go through the calendar, applying the concepts to your life on a monthly basis, like Jews do. It's been called, "living with the times". This way, you get all of the holidays and learn all of the concepts that come through us on a yearly basis, new moon to new moon.


I also re-did my class for the next month - Tishrei - which is full of all of the High Holy Days on the Jewish calendar. You can see that here too. At some point - maybe (if it doesn't feel too overwhelming) - I will do a zoom class that I can record and add to the online classes. Here's the

Kabbalah card for Tishrei:

The Kabbalah Cards


The Kabbalah cards are used in the Kabbalah and Judaism 101 class but not required for the classes - the classes stand on their own. But I do incorporate the cards into the class by having a specific Layout each month tailored to exploring yourself and your purpose, coinciding with the themes and concepts of that month. It's similar to the self-exploration I was taught to do with Tarot cards' concepts. But the Kabbalah cards have nothing to do with Tarot cards! Instead, they contain cards for the 12 months of the Jewish calendar, 12 Sefirot cards (from the main Kabbalah Concept of the Tree of Life), and the rest of the cards are all Kabbalah concepts that are important to learn, adding up to 49 cards total. The Kabbalah Cards can be seen and purchased for yourself here on the PrinterStudio website where I created them. I don't make any money off of them but think they are useful for people who want to learn by simply shuffling and pulling one card per day to apply to your daily life. It's a quick, easy way to learn these things.


Here's a concept card for this time of the year:

Recommendations for Inspiration


**If you want to have a companion book to guide you through the High Holy Days - this book is highly recommended. It's a daily reader that goes for 60 days starting a few days ago. Today is the 4th day. It's like a workbook but goes through Jewish history, traditions of these days, and lessons from Torah (Old Testament). You can also subscribe to a shortened version for free by email here.​


**I also highly recommend reading Psalm 27 every day for the next month. This is a beautiful translation of it. Get the PDF here. It's a Psalm Jews read every day, twice a day during this time of the year. It's full of hope!


**In addition, I recommend a free class that one of my Kabbalah teachers is only up for a few more days and you can learn more about it here on Shifra Chana Hendrie's website - the workshop is called, "5 Days of Soul Activation".​


**Lastly, if you wish to get a Jewish calendar for yourself, google Chabad and the town you live in. You'll be able to find one from your local Chabad House. Ask for their Jewish Art Calendar, the new one usually comes out this time of the year. It will tell you the time to light candles on Friday nights along with all of the holidays and chapters of Torah that are read each week of the year, so you can "Live with the Times!"


I wish all of you a year of completions and new beginnings.





Purim & Jewish Ukraine

Posted on March 17, 2022 at 4:25 PM

I've been wanting to write something about Ukraine since the start of the war but it kept getting postponed. First of all, I bet you thought that the title of this email had a typo. Shouldn't it be Putin & Jewish Ukraine? Right. Here we are on the day of an Irish-American holiday where most people will not know that today is the Jewish holiday of Purim. So I suppose it's appropriate for me to have postponed writing this email until today.


But mostly I haven't really had the energy to pursue anything creative or purpose-driven since my husband died. The energy it takes to "create a new life" (which seems to be the task of a widow) is sorely lacking in me right now. Still, I thought I'd try and see how it goes.


(And now that I'm done and re-reading this, -it's taken me a whole lot longer than it usually does!- it seems a bit rambling, so apologies but I'm sending it out anyway!)


Hasidism comes from Ukraine


As you've gathered from knowing me through these emails, I do see everything through a Jewish lens - even Ukraine. And maybe you haven't thought about the fact that the Jewish roots of Ukraine go very deep. In fact, my dad's parents came to America from Ukraine. But as a Jew, I don't see myself as a Ukrainian-American and neither did my grandparents. They were just Jews in American - wanting to be American - trying to assimilate and grateful to be in a new country where they wouldn't be murdered for being Jewish. Still, it's been fascinating to me to look at Ukraine from that lens.


When the war first started, I definitely went to my rabbi to hear his perspective. He's Hasidic. Ukraine is where that form of Judaism began. It's the form of Judaism I like to learn: I think of it as modern-day Kabbalah since Hasidism came to life in the mid-late 1700's and illuminated the more ancient philosophies of Kabbalah and brought them to the common Jew. The group my rabbi comes from is one of the dynasties of Hasidism called, Chabad. The Chabadniks are all over the world and their Rebbe was the one with the brilliant idea to send out these incredibly strong, young couples to the furthest corners of the world to be there for the Jews living there. My Rabbi told me that he studies weekly with a Rabbi Levitansky who lives in a Ukrainian town near the border with Russia. My own rabbi was trying to study with him that day I came over through zoom but his connection was shaky because he was sheltering from the bombs in his basement! It was so inspiring to hear his story. Luckily he and his family is now safe outside of Ukraine but he is still working to help other Jews stuck inside of Ukraine - with food, medical supplies and ways to get out of there. If you want to donate to his work, go here: www.jewsofukraine.com/sumy


The thing that really struck me was that he and his wife, who had been there since 2004, had nearly completed a mikvah and had just chosen the tiles! That absolutely broke my heart since I know how much effort goes into building a mikvah and then to just have to let it all go and get out of there! Rabbi Levitansky told us that there isn't anti-Semitism any more there - at least he hasn't seen it. Even the non-Jews there were telling him that they believe that Jewish people's prayers are what is keeping them safe!!! And did you know that Ukraine has the largest Jewish Community Center in the entire world?!!


A Complete Reversal


How does all of this relate to today's holiday? In the Book of Esther (which we call Megillas Esther) there is a theme called, nahafoch hu - which means, "just the opposite". It represents what happened on this day on the Jewish calendar - Adar 14, 356 BCE - today's date! This Ukrainian war really to me represents an entire reversal of the norm and has the potential to really change and reverse so many things. The first of which in my mind is the anti-Semitism that was so prevalent in that country. Even today as I listen to the necessity of mass graves there, I get such an awful deja-vu.


The reason my family and many Jews came to America from Ukraine was to escape anti-Semitism. In fact, Hasidism came to Ukraine to revive the Jews who had just been slaughtered by Bohdan Khmelnitsky - ever heard of him?! He invented pograms and slaughtered 1/2 the Jews of Ukraine mid 1600's - a 1/3 of European Jewry at the time. He's a hero in Ukraine & there's a statue of him there. Then in 1768, Ivan Gonta, another Cossack murdered Uman’s 33,000 Jews. And they have a statue of him too! Yes, Ukrainians are proud of their Cossack heritage. So how "nahafocho hu" is it that they voted in a Jewish president who is now the hero of all freedom-loving people in the entire world?!!!


Crazy times call for a look at the deeper teachings within Judaism. I love Chabad because that's where I learn so much of those deeper teachings.


Here's an article from Chabad about the concept of Nahafoch Hu: Complete Reversal


Please do peruse Chabad to learn about Purim and Esther - even if you think you know something about the story, you don't really know the entire story until you have learned it from a Jewish source because you won't know the depth and breadth of what is written between the lines. You cannot know about any book from the "Old Testament" unless you learn about it from a Jewish source. The Bible comes from Jews anyway, right? Why not learn about it from them?! Here's the Purim Megasite with anything you could possibly want to know about this holiday. It's loaded with articles, videos and audios for you to choose from: Purim Megasite


Some things to help you with your broken heart over what's happening in our world with regards to Ukraine:


!. Read Psalms 121 & 20. Reciting Psalms can help remind us that we are in G-d's hands. Psalms Online


2. Meditate on one of the directives of the Purim holiday: to drink until you don't know the difference between "Blessed is Mordechai & Cursed is Haman". (Mordechai is the hero of the story of Esther and Haman is the villian). It is really important for us to find a way to expect that those things that feel like curses are truly blessings. And vice-versa - what do we really, truly know the TRUTH when we are being triggered by what is going on outside of us? Go deeper inside and discover what your triggers are all about and find a Nurturing Inner Voice that can support and heal them. That can bring you a peace and the equanimity that comes with knowing all is in G-d's hands. Even the Hamantachen cookie is open at the top to remind us to have a higher perspective & to keep an open mind.


3. Look below the surface of things. Esther in Hebrew comes from the word, hidden. Like Esther, take the next steps that are in front of you (like my writing this email without the energy for it!), pray, and move forward - act on the surface of things while staying connected to and aware of the Higher hidden hand that guides and is entirely in control of outcomes, trusting in that hand.


I have copied my class handout for the month of Adar where you'll find even more about the story of Purim, the history, the deeper meanings of the traditions we have on this holiday today. Class for Adar  My entire year of classes can be found here: Kabbalah and Judaism 101


In conclusion: A quote from Kabbalist Rabbi Yitchak Ginzberg on Adar:

“...the Rebbe explains that oil that serves as a source of light is a reference to the atzmut (the essence) of Hashem. The crushing of the olives...reveals... the unknowable head, experienced as pure faith in the Jewish soul. The Rebbe explains that... in order for us to become luminaries of the essence of God, we have to be crushed. It is impossible to reveal this highest source of light in us without being broken, without having a broken heart.”


And Lastly, Rabbi Levitansky reminded us to light our Shabbos candles - that the Hebrew words: Narot Shabbos Kodesh (Holy Shabbos Candles) makes the acronym: Neshek (NSHK) which is the word for ammunition.


May we all find the Higher Hand in all that we experience in our lives and in the world - especially in the difficult things that bring a broken heart. And may Moshiach come to immediately, swiftly, peacefully and easily usher in a new world in our days.


Take good care,




Here's one of my Hasidic Kabbalah Cards for the month of Adar:

What Does This Year Hold For You?

Posted on January 7, 2022 at 2:15 PM

It's that time of year when many of us reflect on what the future will bring and what we can do to make our lives better. But maybe for you it's about starting over or finding yourself again because that's what it's been for me.


I held myself off for a year. After my husband died, I immediately wanted to move out of the house I'd built for us to help us go through his demise. Once he was gone, I wanted to start something new. But I held myself back, saying "wait at least one year - right now isn't the best time to make a big decision like moving". But all year I was on Zillow and felt antsy.


Finally in November, nearly one and a half years after his death, I found a place. It seemed "right". It reminded me of who I was before I met him. But it was enough like the house I'd built for us so that I wouldn't feel so bad about letting it go. I was trading an expensive mobile home rental for a cheaper one, trading an ocean view for the redwoods. Letting go of a dream house based on what my husband would love and moving into a place he'd never agree to live at.


In a way, I'm starting over. And I'm finding myself again.


I put crystal balls in the windows to reflect the light and make rainbows all over the place when it's sunny. That makes me feel like myself again.


It's only been a week here but I find that I'm thinking more about things that are meaningful to me - which is why I wanted to write this - to share something meaningful with you. There are a few things I want to share: 1. How the Jewish calendar mirrors my life, 2. What I learned to apply to my life from numerology when I learned the Tarot archetypes many years ago, & 3. How to pray for yourself and others using the Psalms


The Jewish Calendar


My life always mirrors the Jewish calendar. It was the first thing I learned when I was starting to apply Judaism & Kabbalah to my life. For example, I found my new house during the month of miracles. Then I moved into this house with a view of redwoods on the cusp of the month of celebrating trees.


I highly encourage anyone interested in learning more about the Jewish calendar to contact your local Chabad and ask them for a calendar.




You'll see that it contains some important information about some of the days during each month.




There's a book I recommend getting if you want to read more about the meaning of each month but it's out of print and very expensive:


Kabbalah Month by Month - A Year of Spiritual Practice and Personal Transformation by Melinda Ribner


There's a less expensive way to learn about the calendar - it's by going to my online class:


Judaism and Kabbalah 101


there you'll find 12 classes that go through the Jewish calendar. Or get yourself a deck of my Kabbalah Cards - it contains all of the months of the Jewish year and you can learn about the months that way: Kabbalah Cards can be purchased on this website.


Numerology and Tarot Archetypes


I still think about the numerology I learned in the early '80's from my Tarot teacher. She linked numerology with the symbols of the Major Arcana Archetypes and showed us how to look at our Lifetime and Growth Cycle symbols based on our birthdates. Her book explaining all of this is The Tarot Handbook by Angeles Arrien. Since then I am always remembering to think about the symbol I am working with every year starting on my birthday. It helps me to clarify the main focus of my life from year to year.


This year, on my birthday, I will be focusing on #9, the Hermit, which is also the symbol of the year I was born. So this year it's both my Lifetime symbol as well as my Growth Cycle. And I find this so interesting because in a year where those two are the same thing, you feel more like yourself. And I feel like I am on a journey of finding myself. It was also my Growth Cycle on the year before I met my husband...


Lately, I discovered a man who is writing a book showing how the Tarot Major Arcana were originally painted by what he believes was a Crypto Jew. He surmises that based on the fact the Tarot De Marseille was created in France circa 1650 when Jews weren't allowed to practice their religion on pain of death, and points out that its creator hid various Jewish symbols into the artwork to secretly teach Judaism when it was forbidden to. Learn more about his work on his website: TorahTarot.com or in his Facebook Group.


My Lifetime Symbol, the Hermit, is really Moses in the Tarot de Marseille! So, taking time alone to reflect on what I have completed and then teaching from what I've learned is both the meaning of this Tarot symbol, according to Angeles, and is also my Growth symbol for this year!! We call Moses, "Moshe Rabbeinu" (Moses, Our Teacher). He definitely took time alone in the desert to introspect, meditate and then teach. The Symbol on the card represents that action. My teacher Angeles, called this symbol of the Hermit, "the Way Shower". He shines a lamp in the darkness. When I first learned this was my Lifetime symbol, way back in the early 80's, I connected to a higher part of me and it directed me toward a higher intention and purpose for my life.




Praying Using the Psalms


Another way to learn about your year is to look at the Psalms. Just this morning, I read this on a Kabbalist's website :


"Q: Is there is a special chapter of Psalms that I can say for myself?


A: According to the Ba’al Shem Tov, a person should daily recite the chapter in Psalms that corresponds to his age plus 1. This chapter reveals all that will happen to the person in that year and the way to become closer to God in that year. You can also pray for others using the same method: Their age plus one."


I use a beautiful book of Psalms, which in Hebrew are called, "Tehilim": Tehillim by Rabbi Chaim Miller It's a gorgeous presentation with Hebrew and commentary. 63 is my Psalm for this year.




Blessings on a year of starting anew or finding yourself again!

It's Not the Jewish Xmas

Posted on November 28, 2021 at 1:15 PM

Happy Holidays!


Do you hate when people say "Happy Holidays"? I kinda do - I've seen memes around with people wearing T-Shirts that say  



That sounds like me. "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Xmas" doesn't help me feel more included because it isn't MY holiday season! Mine was a couple months ago during the Fall when I take off so many days to attend services for an entire month full of holidays. When people ask me if I'm taking off for Chanukah I want to tell them that Chanukah is only one of two holidays that we DON'T stop working for. And we have holidays nearly every month of the year. And every week, starting on Friday, we have a meal like Thanksgiving!


But people don't know about Jewish holidays. They really don't know. And that's sad to me and that's why I continue to write these emails.


My life has changed in so many ways since my husband got sick and died. But I think I keep finding myself going back to this same purpose for living: to educate Jews and non-Jews about Judaism and to share my love for it. And my experience of being a Jew in a Christian society.


Because people just don't know.


Chanukah commemorates a time around 150 BCE when the Jewish people and their beloved country, Israel, and their Temple were being overrun and taken away from them by the Syrian-Greeks. It's about a small group of Jews fighting against assimilation and against having their religious rights to practice taken away from them. And the miracle is that they won against the huge Greek army...it's another David and Goliath story. And it just seems appropriate that this holiday comes at this time of year in the USA, giving us Jews a message: don't assimilate no matter how enticing all of those lights and trees are.


When I grew up, my father told us that seeing all the xmas merriment was beautiful yes, but it's like seeing someone's Cadillac. You can admire and enjoy the neighbor's car but remember that it's theirs, not yours. That didn't necessarily make me feel any better though.


When I got older, I decided I would gift myself a tree and put lights on it. So one season, I walked through a xmas tree yard and realized that it was really a tree graveyard and so I couldn't buy one... Instead, I got some colored lights and put them up in my office. That was 30 years ago now and I have never done it since that one time. There's something inside of me that I know not every Jew has - but it's about staying true to my ancestors and especially the ones who died rather than convert or were murdered just because they were Jewish. And especially staying true to those who were murdered every year in Europe on xmas just because of this holiday and the anti-Semitism inherent in that religion.


If you want to learn more about Chanukah, here's a good article: The Triumph of Hanukkah


And here's a cute Hanukkah Hip Hop


So, for now I will say, have a happy winter. It's such nice weather here - we're finally getting summer here in SCruz!! But I'm glad that during this time of year, Jews include a prayer for rain in the daily prayer book. Yes, that started a couple of months ago and will continue for another few months when the prayer changes to one for dew instead. We really need rain!


Best to you and yours,



Jews for Judaism

Posted on July 4, 2021 at 2:30 PM

There is a website that I like to learn from and it's also an organization that I like to donate to.  JewsForJudaism.org helps to combat the anti-Semitism that tries to convert Jews to other religions.  Their specialty is to help Jews who have been coerced into christianity by missionaries.  I especially like to learn from them about distortions and mistranslations xtians use from our Torah to prove things that are just completely wrong. So many Jews are influenced because they just don't know the actual translations and meanings of said texts.

This week I watched a video on the erroneous chapter of Isaiah 53.  "Erroneous" because the imposition of chapters in Isaiah are not placed there by our Jewish sages but rather by xtians.  I learned that the book of Isaiah is really full of promises that the hated ones (Jews) will eventually become the honored ones.  And this will shock the rest of the world.  We read Isaiah as a ritual after the day of mourning for the destroyed Temples.  Those passages are a comfort to us.

I love this video.  It made me feel better knowing it was a temporary situation that this misinformation that has spread throughout the entire world, based on a theology of hating Jews (xtianity) and making into a god a man who was supposedly an iconoclast.  It helped me see G-d's hand in the spread of these destructive interpretations of our holy book through the spread of an anti-Semitic theology.  It's like it is G-d's plan to spread the disinformation over the entire world so that when the truth comes out, many, many will be shocked into a mind-blowing, mind-opening spiritual awakening!

Ha!  I love it.  I spend too much time frustrated with all the adoration of a guy who isn't even seen as having been Jewish!  It makes me so angry that credit is not given where credit is due.  Instead, xtian theology makes Jews into the devil incarnate with horns and huge noses while making that guy J.C. into a complete "Adonis" - with no huge nose anywhere!  I even had a friend of mine tell me, "well, he wasn't an Orthodox Jew"....what do you think they were back then?  Reform Jews?  So hilarious, if it wasn't maddening!!

Yes, I've got an enormous chip on my shoulder and can rant and rave about this for a very long time.  I have experienced first-hand this kind of anti-Semitism coming out of that theology.  Even my first college roommate, when I told her I'm Jewish said, "but I thought Jews were a mythical character and had horns!"  She'd been educated pre-college, her whole life in a catholic school, plus her mom was Syrian - does that mean you won't know what Jews are?  Real Jews?

Here's a lovely, short video that Chabad put out explaining what is Judaism where you can also get a quick overview of what is a Jew?  youtube.com/watch?v=yx-_IhUcAmk

We are now starting the 3 Weeks of Mourning that is prior to the day when the original Temples in Jerusalem were both destroyed on the same day hundreds of years apart.  It is a very meaningful time and is the anniversary of my husband's death on Tammuz 29.  My life has always seemed to mirror the Jewish calendar and so my connection to the cycles of the year and the seasons and holidays seems almost comical.  You can read my story of why I created the Kabbalah classes I once taught in my office (which are now online) here.  There I have made the month of Tammuz which starts the countdown of the 3 weeks, available to view for free.  You can find it here.  It also contains an article about why a calendar class and how I came to teach this series.

Even though we now have a country of our own, we still consider ourselves to be in the Roman exile that started 2021 years ago with the destruction of the 2nd Temple.  Until the New Age comes - The World To Come - we won't believe we've been taken out of exile.  It is with the coming of Moschiach that all gets restored and Jerusalem becomes the center of the spiritual world for all mankind and peace comes to the world that we can feel our exile is over.  It will bring a shock to the world that the messiah isn't "he", as we read in Isaiah, that the Jewish people, the hated ones, will be recognized and no longer hated but valued and honored.  May we see this in our day, AMEIN!!!