We can now return to the earlier questions.

The line can and must be drawn in the context of an honest, objective and critical self-evaluation.

The line can and must be drawn in the context of a frank and open pursuit of truth, regardless of what the consequences may be; without prejudging, without personal bias, without considering what others might think or say.

We need no more than the same criteria used in determining our general concept of truth and reality - the same criteria, be they historical or philosophical; no more.

It is here that Jewish mysticism differs radically from all other kinds or schools of mysticism.

Judaism is based on the public Revelation at Sinai, when the Torah was given to Israel.

The historical event of Sinai attests to the Divine source and nature of the Torah, and the Torah in turn serves as the exclusive criterion for any subsequent claims and teachings.

Authentic Jewish mysticism is an integral part of Torah, and Torah determines what is authentic Jewish mysticism.

The general term for Jewish mysticism is - Kabbalah.

Kabbalah means tradition.

The Kabbalah is *not* a compound of personal insights.

It is *not* a collection of reports of what various sages and saints had to say on the meaning of life and ultimate values - based on their mystical experiences or visions.

It is *not* a system born in a vacuum.

The Kabbalah and its teachings - no less than the Halachah - are an integral part of Torah.

They are traced back to the historical roots of Sinai, part and parcel of "Moshe kibel Torah miSinai umesarah.... (Moses received the Torah from Sinai and transmitted it....)."

To be sure, in various works of the Kabbalah one can find reports of mystical experiences, visions, the supernatural - all those things and more which we normally link to mysticism.

They are there, but they are not the essence or even a major part of the Kabbalah.

At best they are effects, possibilities or potential effects, that may accompany a mystic's life.

The authentic mystic, however, will not seek to manipulate, and will shun interfering with the natural order instituted by the Creator.

The authentic mystic seeks knowledge, understanding.

He wants to "Know the G‑d of your father," to fulfill the precept of "You shall know this day and consider in your heart that G‑d He is G‑d in Heaven above and upon the earth below - there is nothing else."

He seeks to realize and understand this axiom not only as an intellectual affirmation of truth but as a living reality within the limits of his capacity - profoundly sensing the literal omnipresence of G‑d, with a penetrating understanding and knowledge, as much as possible.