In this episode of the 18Forty Podcast, we sit down with Joey Rosenfeld, social worker and kabbalist, to talk about the differences between mysticism and rationalism and the roles they should play in our lives.
Mysticism is often misunderstood and dismissed by rationalists without much thought, but what is mysticism? One might define it by what it’s not: reductionism, which combined with complexity is science. But what if we saw things as their whole instead of their constituent parts? Maybe we’re limiting ourselves by reducing the big picture to a list of atomic components; maybe seeing the unfiltered unity in all things would be freeing.
Joey Rosenfeld began to learn Kabbalah in depth in yeshiva, when he was supposed to be dedicating his time to Talmud, and found its ideas to be profoundly life-changing. He does not fit the stereotype of the secluded, white-bearded mystic, as he is a social worker and addiction counselor. As someone with a unique window into people’s vulnerabilities, Joey sees deep connections between Kabbalah and psychology, particularly in the theory behind Alcoholics Anonymous, which drew from the work of Carl Jung.
-What are the differences between rationalism and mysticism?
-Are they compatible or incompatible?
-What approach should people take when learning Kabbalah?
-Are there parallels between mysticism and therapy?
-And how is or isn’t mysticism suited for a modern audience?
Tune in to hear Joey discuss the role that mysticism plays in his life, and how one can find peace in transcending rationality.
For more, visit https://18forty.org/mysticism/#rosenfeld