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Definition of Tsimtsum

Tsimtsum Definition from Religion & Spirituality Dictionaries & Glossaries
Tsimtsum (Chaldean) [from the verbal root tsaman to contract, press together] Contraction; a Qabbalistic term containing the philosophical idea of a previous expansion -- otherwise there could have been no subsequent contraction. Hence, tsimtsum is used to designate centrifugal and centripetal motion, expansion and contraction, which under the direction of the supreme of the Sephiroth brought forth and maintains the universe.
"The Unknown Absolute, above all number, manifested Itself through an emanation in which it was immanent yet as to which it was transcendental. It first withdrew Itself into Itself, to form an infinite Space, the Abyss; which It then filled with a modified and gradually diminishing Light or Vitalization, first appearing in the Abyss, as the centre of a mathematical point which gradually spread Its Life-giving energy or force throughout all Space. This concentration or contraction and its expansion, being the centripetal and centrifugal energies of creation and existence, the Qabbalists called Tzimtzum. The Will of Ain Soph then manifests Itself through the Ideal Perfect Model or Vitalizing Form, first principle and perfect prototype in idea, of all the to be created, whether spiritual or material. This is the Mikrokosm to the Ain Soph, the Makrokosm as to all the created. It is called the Son of Elohim, i.e., God, and the Adam Illa-ah or Adam Qadmon, the Man of the East or Heavenly Adam " (Myer, Qabbalah p. 231).
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Tsimtsum Definition from Encyclopedia Dictionaries & Glossaries
English Wikipedia - The Free Encyclopedia
The tzimtzum or tsimtsum (Hebrew   "contraction/constriction/condensation") is a term used in the Lurianic Kabbalah to explain Isaac Luria's new doctrine that God began the process of creation by "contracting" his Ein Sof (infinite) light in order to allow for a "conceptual space" in which and seemingly independent realms could exist. This primordial initial contraction, forming a Khalal/Khalal Hapanui ("vacant space", חלל הפנוי) into which new creative light could beam, is denoted by general reference to the tzimtzum. In contrast to earlier, Medieval Kabbalah, this made the first creative act a concealment/Divine exile rather than unfolding revelation. This dynamic crisis-catharsis in the Divine flow is repeated throughout the Lurianic scheme.

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