My Jewish Learning

Kabbalah & Mysticism Quiz

Jewish mystical teachings about the nature of God and reality have had a profound impact on the development of Judaism. How much do you know about this area of Jewish contemplation and spirituality?

Question 1. According to kabbalistic thought, the Holy Sparks are
 the spiritual illuminations inherent in all things
 the 36 righteous people in the world
 the letters of the Torah as seen after fasting for a week
 the inspiration for holiness one finds in misery


Question 2. Which of these forms of Jewish mysticism came first?
 Merkavah mysticism
 Jewish Renewal
 Hasidic mysticism
 The Zohar


Question 3. From the 13th to the 15th century, where was the world center of kabbalistic teachings?
 Small villages throughout Eastern Europe


Question 4. Which of the following people are associated with the authorhsip of the Zohar
 Moses de Leon
 Moses Maimonides
 Baruch Spinoza


Question 5. Which of the following non-kabbalistic books was written by a kabbalist?
 Shulhan Arukh, the code of Jewish law
 Sefer Hahinukh, the list of mitzvot in the Torah
 Halikhot Bat Yisrael, the code of Jewish womenís behavior
 Sefer Minhagim, the directory of Jewish customs


Question 6. Abraham Abulafia, a 13th-century mystic, was a devoted follower of
 The Emperor Constantine
 The prophet Samuel
 David Ben Gurion


Question 7. What is significant about Safed, the northern Israeli city?
 In medieval times, many spectral lights were seen in the sky over Safed
 The water surrounding Safed was seen as mystically enriching
 The city contained dirt carried from Mount Sinai, where the Torah was received
 After the Jews were exiled from Spain, many Jewish mystics settled there


Question 8. What is Kabbalah?
 A 26-volume book of Jewish mystical thought
 A loosely-defined umbrella term representing Jewish mystical thought
 A collection of the mystical passages in the Torah and Talmud
 The most mystical of the four sects of post-Babylonian Exile Judaism


Question 9. What is tzimtzum?
 A product of the shevirah, shattering
 A vessel of light flowing from the orfices of the first man
 Godís essential self
 A contraction of God into a finite space


Question 10. According to Rabbi Yehuda Ashlag, the study of Kabbalah is:
 An otherwordly tradition
 A logical system intended for the ethical and political redemption of human society
 The only way to guarantee one will have a place in the World to Come
 A good way to rub elbows with celebrities