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There’s only one way to transform the ugliest, nastiest, darkest gunk of this world: by letting it make you stronger. That’s when you’ve ripped off its mask . . .

Kosher Kung Fu

Kosher Kung Fu

What’s really hiding under the ugly face of darkness?

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Kosher Kung Fu: What’s really hiding under the ugly face of darkness?

There’s only one way to transform the ugliest, nastiest, darkest gunk of this world: by letting it make you stronger. That’s when you’ve ripped off its mask . . .
Struggle, Challenge & Adversity, It'hapcha (transformation), Bereishit, Good and Evil

“In the beginning, G‑d created the heavens and the earth—that earth being a hyperchaotic mess, darkness over the face of something real deep, and a divine wind hovering over the waters. So G‑d said, ‘Be light!’—and it was light!”

Cut! Let’s read that a little differently. Instead of reading it as an event, let’s read it as a concept forming in G‑d’s mind:

“When G‑d was first considering creating spiritual and material worlds, He imagined a material world that would seem totally empty and meaningless, shrouded in darkness, a real sense of otherness about it, with a sense of His presence as something transcendental hovering beyond it all. And yet, He imagined, all this darkness would exist only in order that it could be transformed into light. And so, eventually, it would become light.”

Which tells us three things:

  1. This world is all about meaninglessness, confusion and darkness.
  2. This world is all about revealing G‑dly light.
  3. Life is about moving things from meaning #1 to meaning #2.

Now doesn’t that explain a lot?

It explains why everything in this world seems so dead-set on confusing, confounding and stomping into the mud any venture you make towards improving it.

It explains why this world is so full of eye-popping freakin’ amazing beauty of unfathomable, deeply intricate structure—for those with open eyes, and especially if they have an electron microscope.

It explains why things so often seem futile and pointless, why so many tragedies occur that make life look meaningless, why each object and event in this world superficially looks like “it’s just here ’cause it’s here.”

It explains why there are those who find meaning in life, create beauty and rejoice in it, but only after a hell of a struggle.

And it explains why all these spiritual gurus keep telling you that to get spiritual, you need to abandon all worldly, material pursuits.

Why? Because the Creator wanted a real good story. Transforming a nice guy into a better guy—what’s the excitement in that? But to create a world that superficially appears in every way as the diametric opposite of G‑d’s oneness, a world that openly denies it was created for any meaning at all or that it has a Creator to begin with—and then to watch the beauty of that world uncovered, its darkness transformed into pure light, its every detail brought to reflect the oneness and magnificence of its Creator—now that’s a real thriller!

Who’s the hero of that thriller? You are. Your mission, which you decided to accept before you even came here, is to unmask the sinister mask of this world and to reveal that darkness is really light in disguise. After all, it all comes from the same, single Creator.

Your worst enemy is your best friend

Now we know something else about this world: When it’s challenging you, misleading you, confounding all your efforts, looking super-ugly and just plain mean—really, it’s on your side. It’s purpose is not to beat you, but to bring out your innermost powers. To make you try harder.

That’s the purpose for which it was created. And what other way does this world have to demonstrate what it’s really all about?

You could sit and meditate all day long, until you perceive a transcendental truth, so clear, so bright, that all else has no meaning.

But the confusing, dark world that you have abandoned will remain dark and confusing.

You could explore its beauty, the majesty of its mountains, the mysteries of its oceans, the impenetrable genius it contains in every atom, the drama of life it nurtures. In all this, if you’re a smart cookie, you could see the infinite depth of G‑d’s wisdom and the endless diversity of His works.

But the ugliness of the world will remain dark and ugly. Darkness has not been transformed, ugliness has not been unmasked.

And really, you would not even have begun to fathom the depths of the divine wisdom—because where is that wisdom and light hidden in its greatest intensity, in all its strength? In that which appears to you as utter, pitch-black darkness.

There’s only one way to transform evil this ugly: by letting it make you stronger

Only when the confusion, the meaninglessness, the ugliness and the darkness itself brings out the innermost core-essence of your divine soul to the point that you say, “You think you can stop me? No way! The harder you try, the more force you give me to defeat you!”

—only then have you ripped off the mask of the whole of creation and said, “Aha! You are really divine light in disguise!”

Because, after all, if it truly were just darkness, what’s it doing sabotaging itself by bringing out your innermost powers?

When darkness strikes, grab the power it is giving you. You will find that power deep inside yourself.

Soon, very soon, all the world will shine. G‑d said, “Let it be light!” That’s what you’re doing right now.

Written and conceived by Tzvi Freeman. Rabbi Freeman is available for public speaking and workshops. Read more on his bio page.
Music by The Piamentas
Rabbi Infinity played by Andrew Torres
Animation and SFX by Pilar Newton of Pilar Toons
© Copyright, all rights reserved. If you enjoyed this article, we encourage you to distribute it further, provided that you comply with Chabad.org's copyright policy.
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Anonymous December 8, 2011

its great!!!!!!!!!!!!! its great!!! I love Kabbalah Toons all the videos are great, I especially love this one because of the Kung Fu part in it.


I LOVE KABBALA TOONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Reply

Jon T. Colorado Springs, CO/USA November 2, 2011

Great stuff, but for the detail of HOW The cartoon was wonderful.
However, the details in life situations I find not so easy. For instance, I have some difficult family situation with one of my son's and I don' know how to change the intense negativity coming from him and fueled by my ex-wife to change the situation. I try to stay to my ethics and values so that I don't sink into my own depths, but it doesn't change the situation and it is painful.
Philosophically, I totally understand what the Rabbi is communicating. But for this current situation, I don't know what to do.

It makes me think of when I used to study Tai Chi from a Tai Chi master in Chinatown in N.Y.C. Staying calm and in balance and allowing an opponent to use their own energy against themselves was amazing. Reply

Neshi R ottawa November 2, 2011

comment I've often thought that there is a Torah for women, which isn't written down the same way., which has a slightly different set of suppositions - I understand the dichotomy you are describing and even accept, it sort of, but recall a long time ago when a visiting Chabad rabbi said- In Torah, the men are all out there fighting and struggling, warfare and battling, and the women, mostly, are taking care of the children, watching out for the weak and the elderly, maintaining the society- doing what he called "the real business of life'"
until the men get off track and then a woman would step in, remind the men what it was all about and then move back into the supportive background, keeping the world going- I don't 'like' the concept of a game, the puzzle, that it is hidden to be revealed and that the more hidden, the greater the joy of the revelation- I'm not a chess player, not a sports fan- when things are going right, without that struggle, that's the real good- Reply

Menachem Kovacs BALTIMORE, Maryland November 2, 2011

very helpful! This is deep & practical!
Thank you. Reply

rabbi dr katherine Hans Von Rotes Schild Zitler November 2, 2011

transcendency and being the it We learn from this passage that we Jews are never created to just sit on the side lines and watch we must become what we are to be doers and changers completing creation. We exist in the though patterns of the illuminated mind of Hashem. Each one of us must become a most valuable player that make something happens tliting the balance in the favour of righteousness. Reply

Anonymous wisc October 20, 2011

take 2 Another intersting aspect to the title of the article, i don't know much about kung fu, but in judo the idea is to turn the strength of your opponent to your advantage, something akin to ' it's all about leverage '.

The article would seem to suggest a similar approach. Turn the negatives into positives. Turn your weaknesses or attackers to your advantage. Turn darkness into light, which is the message anyways. Reply

Rhema Corona, CA October 19, 2011

Timely Message Thanks for the timely and simple message to help put "it" back into perspective. I was having a really funky day and this little video helped tremendously. Reply

Levi Sasonkin Akron, OH October 18, 2011

*Problem* Never mind. I got it. Reply

Levi Sasonkin Akron, OH October 18, 2011

*Problem* When I click on the video, it only shows the 1st three seconds and then it freezes. What should I do? Reply

matthew Washington October 18, 2011

"G-d said" reading it as a "concept" is interesting, only issue is it seems to have left out the all important: "and G-d said".. Reply

Anonymous wisc October 18, 2011

complicated made simpler To paraphrase, develop and strengthen your physical and spiritual sides. Actively make the world a G-dly place. Think G-dly thoughts. For example, on Simchat Torah, dance with the Torah. At the same time, be mindful of holding the Holy Torah, the scroll of Hashem, which has accompanied us through thick and thin for 5 thousand years. Reply

Jjule mill valley , CA October 18, 2011

Thank you I'm in the funk, the " why bother" the liars seem to win. Not finding much joy, or strength .... Reply

Emmanuel .A. Ocheja Abuja, Nigeria October 18, 2011

Re: Kosher kungfu I love this stream of thougth, is it not for the same reason that the prophets wrote that the anger of the wicked will glorify G-d? The evil happenings around us being darkness are meant to bring to the fore our latent qualities i.e. Potentials. being the light in us.(bringing down the great Goliaths by the seemingly little Davids. Reply

Anonymous Sayreville, NJ October 18, 2011

Thanks I agree with M Lillian. These thoughts are much needed for me today. There is no such thing as coinciudence and this is exactly what is happening in my life now, today. Thanks Rabbi !!! Reply

M Lillian Las Vegas, NV October 17, 2011

Thank you Thank you so much, Rabbi. This will help me feel more joyful today. Reply

Carmen October 17, 2011

Thank you so much! Thank you so much ,Rabbi Tzvi!

Now,can you answer how to accomplish this whole task/process with Joy?

How to grasp Joy, to never let it go? Reply

Eric Sander Kingston Beverley Hills, CA October 17, 2011

The third way to unite opposites is to show they are one and the same.

Words spoken from the heart enter the heart.

THE REBBE Reply

Anonymous October 17, 2011

Kabbalah-קבלה Full Screen To download this video to your computer, right click on this link and select "Save Target As"
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2 Comments

Kosher Kung Fu
Posted by Rabbi Infinity
“In the beginning, G‑d created the heavens and the earth—that earth being a hyperchaotic mess, darkness over the face of something real deep, and a divine wind hovering over the waters. So G‑d said, ‘Be light!’—and it was light!”

Cut! Let’s read that a little differently. Instead of reading it as an event, let’s read it as a concept forming in G‑d’s mind:

“When G‑d was first considering creating spiritual and material worlds, He imagined a material world that would seem totally empty and meaningless, shrouded in darkness, a real sense of otherness about it, with a sense of His presence as something transcendental hovering beyond it all. And yet, He imagined, all this darkness would exist only in order that it could be transformed into light. And so, eventually, it would become light.”

W Reply

Carmen October 6, 2011

Most of the time I pity evil. I pity evil because it seems to me it is a sacrificed.It is sacrificing itself for our benefit to find light.
When we fight to destroy it(when there is no other way other than destruction),we might became enlighted,but what about the poor sacrificed that is destroyed in the process?
It is sad indeed...It is sad because after all it is also a creature of G-d.
Was it created only to be destroyed?
And supposing it is not a "it",but a "he"or a"she"?

Can you answer? Reply

Chuck Montrose, PA September 4, 2011

Evil unmasked? I grasp the non-duality of this thought, but find it hard to live it. My Shadow side is too destructive. I recently embraced my shadow side and have found great healing, but at the cost of many loved ones. Why is unmasking the evil so painful? Is there an easier path or am I mistaken with the path? Reply